Today was my first race of the year, the mad dog 10k in Southport. Throughout January my running has been going really well, running 4 times a week and fitting in long runs and some park runs too. I ran 80 miles in January which is more than I ran altogether in 2012! I was feeling really ready for the 10k this Sunday, until I felt terribly run down with a sore throat this week which resulted in me skipping 2 of my planned runs. Not exactly perfect planning for a race!
Luckily I felt better by Sunday and ready for my race. The weather however...was not ideal. Winds of up to 30mph! When I saw the forecast that there was no rain, I decided to forego wearing my running jacket and just pin my number to my t-shirt. I quickly regretted that when I realised how cold the wind-chill was! The race was really well organised, with buses from the car park to the start line. The race started prompty at 10.40 (pretty reasonable race start time too, no bleary-eyed wake up calls!).
The first 3 miles were along the seafront at Southport, straight into the wind. Oh gosh, the wind! My hands were red raw from the wind and at one point it felt like we were being sandblasted by the beach. Luckily we then looped around into shelter and the sun actually came out. I was then glad I made the choice to leave the jacket at home! I reached 5k in about 28 minutes and calculated that if I kept up this pace, I could possibly make a 56 minute 10k - 2 minutes off my PB! That spurred me on for the next 5k.
By now, we were running with the wind rather than against it and I started to get in some faster miles, 8.43, 8.34 and 8.16 to be precise! I was running towards the finish line and to my amazement the gun time clock had just ticked over to 55 minutes.
After - looking a bit windswept!
The race overall was really good - great organisation, good medal and goody bag. I would like to see races do ladies t-shirts as the small sizes are still always huge. I usually just end up wearing them as pyjamas!
Now I've come down from my endorphin high of getting a pb by 3 minutes, I need to re-focus on marathon training. I've got the Liverpool half marathon at the end of March also, so I'll be ramping up the length of my long runs and trying to build in some speed work to try and get a new half marathon pb (aiming for below 2 hours).