Despite the last 2 months’ worth of Grant’s training being predominantly focused towards 5-10km speed work, it was decided that The Prudent Riverside 10 mile, would provide a perfect bench mark as a fitness check and confidence boost before starting specific training for The Great North Run.
Race conditions were looking surprisingly good. It was a little humid and there would be a slight headwind on the return – although nothing which would seriously impact my time. Since not training for this distance though, I was unsure of the pace, or perceived effort that I could withstand for the distance. Having completed a full working week of 12 hour shifts (as well as fitting in 2 hard training sessions), I didn’t particularly feel race-ready on the start line either. However, it would be good to see how I could hold up, without a taper, to set a realistic target goal for The Great North Run.
As the race kicked off, I held back a little bit to see how the race would develop at the front. I tucked in just behind the lead runners for the first mile, to see how the pace felt. I felt rather comfortable with the pace, but as we approached the first mile marker, the pace began to drop slightly. I decided to step to the front at this point and maintain the pace that we had set off at.
At this point, only 1 runner, Rob Affleck (of Preston Harriers), stayed with me and we slowly developed a gap between us and 3rd place. I remained on the front for the first 3 miles, then Rob decided to help with the pace a little at the front for half a mile. I still felt very comfortable here though and got myself back on the front again to lead us to the 5 mile marker in just over 27 minutes.
The 2nd half of the run gave the task of several hills and undulating sections to tackle. Thankfully for me, there is nothing closer to home for a Cumbrian road runner and so I pushed on up the hills, still feeling fresh from mile 6 and 2nd place started to fall behind.
I held the pace for the remainder of the run, with the last 4 miles being the fastest of the run. I cruised home to victory in a time of 53 minutes and 44 seconds and 2nd place came in 42 seconds behind. All in all it was a successful run, where I was not pushed for pace, plus I gined a negative split on a more difficult 2nd half. It has provided all the confidence needed to set myself a respectable target time for the Great North Run. I felt strong and relaxed running at that pace, which gives great self-confidence going into specific half marathon training next week. Onwards and upwards!
Fuel consisted of a regular pre-race breakfast of :
1 x Cinnamon and Raisin Bagel with Strawberry Jam
Plus sipped on 500ml of TORQ Energy – Blackcurrant leading up to the race
Immediately following the race, I sped up recovery with a Refreshing TORQ Recovery shake – Banana and Mango – Delicious! ☺
Distance 10 mile – Time: 53:44 – Position – 1st
The TORQ Running Team is sponsored by the following and without them we would not be able to do what we do, thank you: