Posts Tagged ‘10k’

Abbey Dash 2017

Monday, November 6th, 2017 | Sport

November means the Abbey Dash. Last year I set my personal best over 10k, 56:45, which bested my previous PB of the awesome time of 59:59 set at the Leeds 10k.

This year I had a support time, as Elina and Venla came down to the starting pen. Much welcomed given how cold it was as I could keep my hoodie on until the final 10 minutes before the race.

This year seemed bigger than ever. The announcer said 11,000, though whether that many actually showed up I’m not sure.

My target time was 54 minutes, nearly three minutes ahead of my personal best. It was carefully calculated from the Run Less, Run Faster conversation tables which told me that if I could run a 54-minute 10k, I could do a sub-2 hour half marathon.

However, training has been going really well recently, including taking my Parkrun PB down to 24:37, so I decided to set off fast and slow down when my chest felt like it was going to explode.

As it happens, I managed to avoid this and bring it home in:

49:46

Very chuffed. Well ahead of my target. I had done a sub-50 training run, but it’s always harder on race day because you can never take the perfect like, so you always end up running an additional 100-200 metres with all of the dodging around people and taking corners wide.

I came on to the finishing straight, and Strava told me I had hit 10k with 49:11, giving me 49 seconds to sprint to the actual finish.

Does this mean I can run a sub-2 hour half marathon? Hopefully! It’s not as straightforward as it might seem. The Abbey Dash is very flat while the Leeds Half is almost entirely set on hills. Second, the weather is often very warm in May. But that is certainly the target.

The conversation tables also suggest I can run a sub-4 hour marathon. But I doubt that would be true!

A big shout out to Jane for whom this was her first 10k race. And it was great to grab a beer with Rob, Dr Chris and Elina after the race.

Leeds 10k 2017

Sunday, July 23rd, 2017 | Sport

July means the Jane Tomlinson’s Run For All 10k in Leeds. It is usually boiling, making for difficult running conditions but is also a really fun event to be part of: you set off from the east side of town and loop all the way around before heading up Kirkstall Road.

Last year I set an awesome time: 59:59.

I wanted to beat the hour and did so: by one second!

Race Time
Abbey Dash 2016 56:45
Run For All 2016 59:59
Abbey Dash 2015 1:07:58
Abbey Dash 2014 1:07:36
Run For All 2014 1:06:14

This year was a mixed bag. I managed a time of 57:28. This is 43 seconds behind by Abbey Dash time, but 2:31 ahead of any time I have set in the heat.

Any hope of the run being good for me was quickly dashed. We went for brunch at Wetherspoon’s, followed by recovery ice cream at Baskin Robbins. That was Venla’s favourite part of the whole event.

The race was well organised. You get a colour coded number based on your expected finish time: blue (elite), red (not so elite), and green (everyone else). Previously, I have been held up by slower runners, so I put in a target time of 54 minutes.

This seems to have been the magic that moved me into the red zone. 55 minutes plus seems to have put you in the green zone. However, there were only two pens: all the blues and reds were in the same one. This meant that while I expected it to take 10-15 minutes to get to the start, I was actually through a couple of minutes after the gun.

Well done to everyone else who took part, what were your times?

Abbey Dash 2016

Monday, November 28th, 2016 | Sport

abbey-dash-2016

Earlier this month I took part in the 31st Abbey Dash.

It was the first time I had run the Dash. However, it is not a race I do particularly well. Last year, I set a personal worst over 10k. This year looked like to be a repeat of previous years: old and wet.

Luckily Jane and Rob were already there when I turned up and Chris and Carley turned up later too. Usually, I am stood around by myself for the hour you have to wait, so it was nice to feel like I had some friends for a short while.

Organisation was improved. They only do one water point (Run For All does two) but they did text me my result this year. There was still stuff to fix, though. They let the sub-60 and sub-70 pens go at the same time. I was at the back of the sub-60 pen, so I was running behind a lot of the sub-70 runners. By the finishing straight, I was literally having to push my way through, and it slowed me down a lot.

Despite my previous bad times, I was hopeful. So far in 2016 I had run my first half marthon, set a personal best at Parkrun and run my first sub-60 over 10k when I managed a 59:59 in the Leeds 10k in July. My faith was rewarded: I brought it home in 56:45 setting a new 10k PB.

Leeds 10k 2016

Monday, July 11th, 2016 | Sport

leeds-10k-2016

I ran my first Run For All Leeds 10k in 2014, achieving a time of 1:06:14. Despite it being a hot day this was faster than both my subsquent Abbey Dash times, and remained my personal best 10k race time. This year’s Leeds 10k was also warm (19 degrees) but cloudy (and still cooler than the half marathon!).

I have been running better than ever before in training so I was hoping to knock a significant block off my personal best, and for a stretch target try and run a sub-60 time.

Unfortunately, things were off to a poor start. The 60-minute pacer was right at the front of the green group (athletes predicted to run 60+, I think) so I couldn’t get close to her. By the time I had crossed the starting line she was out of sight. I only saw her at the turnaround point, at which time she was way head of me.

My GPS said that I was running a sub-60 time. However, it kept reporting I was ahead in distance: it would give me my kilometre split before I reached the official marker points and clocked my total 10k distance at 10.26km. When I clocked my final time via GPS I was at 1:00:10. 10 seconds over the hour!

workout-details

I had given it my all, and come up short.

Run For All usually text you your official time straight however. Mine never arrived, so I faced a nail-biting wait in the pub while waiting for the official times to be posted.

Finally, it arrived.

chip-time

My time was 0:59:59. The slowest possible time you can run while still being under an hour. But it was under an hour. I had taken 6:15 off my personal best. An incredibly fortunate ending.

I really like the way Run For All run their events. My race pack and race number arrived on time. They have markers at every kilometre, plenty of water, pacers every five minutes and even though my my text never arrived, the results were available online within a few hours.

Abbey Dash 2015

Tuesday, November 24th, 2015 | Sport

abbey-dash-2015

Earlier this month I ran the Abbey Dash for the second time. It was their 30th birthday, making them even older than me. The photo above is me the next day. I did not look like that after the race. I looked more like an shrivelled old man about to have a heart attack.

The weather conditions were not ideal. It rained before the race, leaving us stood around for an hour in the cold and wet. Once the race started (at which point you actually want the rain to cool you down a bit) it backed off.

I was 22 second slower than last year, coming home in 1:07:58. Not brilliant, but I trained harder last year, so to get such a small difference entires de-values all the work I did for the 2014 Dash. It certainly wasn’t the nightmare that my friend Howell had, running a 32:10, over 6% slower than his target time. I’ll give him some tips for next year.

I made the mistake of putting 70 minutes as my expected time which bumped me down to the slowest starting pen. Next year I think I will bump it up as I have never run a 70+.

I am not sure they are quite as well organised as Run For All. There is only one water station and I had to skip that because there was a queue. There was no big banner for the finish line so I did not know when it was time for that very final push until it was almost upon me. I was unable to spot some of the kilometre distance markers either. Finally I did not get my time until more than 24 hours after, whereas Run For All text me in under a minute of finishing (which I was very impressed at, later in the day would have been fine).

Leeds 10k

Thursday, July 31st, 2014 | Sport

Recently I ran the Leeds 10k. I think it was the hardest run I have ever done. I was not expecting it to be that difficult as I run 10k quite regularly. However, it proved much more of a challenge doing it as an organised event.

That is not entirely unsurprising as my Parkrun times are usually slightly slower too. However, why it is, I am not entirely sure. The race is later in the morning and has less shade than my usual route, so I think heat had an effect. Also possibly lack of familiarity with the route.

At the start, you also spend half an hour crammed in with 10,000 other runners too, which was quite anxiety-provoking, so that probably took a bit out of me,

I finished in 1:06:14, which is about 8 minutes slower than my personal best when out running by myself. Not the complete disaster I was expecting though, from my pace on the home stretch I remember thinking I was on for a 1:20:00!

The event was well organised. They had water stations along the route, lots of volunteers to hand out goodie bags and you were texted your result within a minute of crossing the finish line.

I was very grateful for Elina coming to meet me too. I felt really ill after I ran 10k last week before attempting to run up to the park, so it was awesome to have someone bring me drinks and snacks.