Friday, 4 July 2014

BOOM...just another Julie-ism!

On Sunday morning I was up bright and early for the Lambton 10k. My brother-in-law Craig and friend Claire were also running. My best friend Rachael and her boyfriend Karl came along to support us.

I drove us to Craig’s house then he drove to the Lambton Estate (partly as he has a bigger car, but mainly as he has a better sense of direction!)

We set off nice and early and I was nervous and excited rolled into one! As we approached the car park I saw a sign that said ‘BOOM’. As we got nearer we were talking about running down this stretch of road and I realised that the sign didn’t say BOOM at all…it actually said 800m (clearly an easy mistake to make… and certainly one which had us laughing all the way to the car park! And as Craig pointed out... it's just another ‘Julie-ism’)

We were pretty much the first people there (after the Marshalls) and got parked really easily. We wandered around looking at the grounds and the excitement built the busier it got.

We posed for some pre-race photos and we also spoke to some of the other girls from running J We queued for the toilet (which took a surprising length of time due to the large number of people and small number of portaloos). I saw Colin (South Shields Parkrun Director) and I waved and said hello :) it's always nice to see a friendly face.
Craig, me and Claire
I started off with Craig, not far into the race there was a little bit of a bottle neck due to the large number of runners but it didn’t take long to get past this (may well have cost some people a personal best though!)

My sole aim for the event was to get to the finish – I hadn’t ran many hills previously so decided to use it more as a training session than an actual race.
Me running
(Thanks to Hippie for the photo)
I set off at a steady pace and tried to maintain this throughout. I was doing ok, and the scenery was making it a much more pleasant experience. The hills were hard work but I’ve learned a lot from Steve in the training sessions. I kept asking myself ‘are you going to own the hill or is the hill going to own you?!’ I was doing well at owning the hills until the last mile and there was a killer hill. I was determined to keep running up it but my poor little legs just couldn’t keep going so I walked the remainder of the hill. I started running again when it was flat then my heart sank at the next bit of hill (which was really just an extension of the previous one!).

I knew I didn’t have far to go so just kept telling myself to keep going. Some of the marshalls were really friendly (others not so much) and the smiley ones really helped me to keep going.

BOOM just 800m to go! (Just twice round the track!) I knew if I kept going at the pace I was running at I would be able to finish in a good time so I kept focused and put one foot in front of the other. At 400m Craig and Hippie Lee were there to cheer me on, they started to run with me which really helped, but also made me go faster. At 200m to go I had very little left but just kept going.

Everybody was cheering me on as I got near the finish, and seeing Rachael and Karl really helped! When I finally crossed the finish line I felt sick and my legs were like jelly - but I DID IT. I completed my 2nd ever 10k race (in a time of 1hour 17 minutes which was two minutes faster than the Sunderland 10k). I was so pleased with myself even though I was aching all over and could hardly breathe!

Rach came running straight over to give me a hug and tell me how proud she is of me! I’m proud of Rachael too, she’s part of the reason I run – she’s an inspiration J

When I was eating my refresher and drinking my water I met a fellow Great North Run Beer Tenter and said well done (unfortunately I didn't catch his name but it was nice to meet another member of the group). I really enjoyed the whole experience and I am excited for the Great North 10K a week on Sunday!
Huge thanks to Rach and Karl for coming along to support us (after a night out too!) and also to Hippie Lee and Craig for getting me to the finish. Thanks to Hippie for the fab photos too!

My official 10 week training plan started on Monday (with a well earned rest day!) I went for 7 mile run last night (which accidentally turned into 7.5miles). I really struggled with the first couple of miles (heavy calves) and didn’t know how I’d get to 7. I settled into it after a little while and I actually enjoyed the middle few miles (who ever thought I'd say that?!). I really struggled with the last mile as my knees began to hurt. I walked a little bit during the first couple of miles as I was getting cramp in my calves but from about 2.5miles until 7.2 miles I ran all the time which is really good going for me when I run on my own! Looking forward to a track session in the morning!
View on my evening run yesterday
A huge thank you to everyone who is reading this and those who have supported me in any way on my journey to the Great North Run.

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