Elswick Village Elswick Village the kind of lovely little place, you’d love to go and stick a fracking drill…..well if your the UK government that’s what you want to do. To runners, it’s a place you go to try and set a fast 10 mile time, over a relatively flat and pleasant route.
I ran this race last year, where I set a 10 mile PB of 1:04:24, although I did face a few moments of heavy wind which took way some of the advantage of what is a fairly flat route.
So here I was again a year later, the weather conditions were overcast, but there was little wind…or so it seemed at this point…and it was still fairly warm. I am guessing the runners took too long getting into position for this race, as we set off with half the field still walking from the side road, where the pre-race talk was delivered, to the road where the race started. Myself included, as I was in the middle of giving some advice to a fellow harrier. Race organisers i dont know. a bit of warning and i am sure the runners would of quickly lined up.
Setting off, I knew I was going at a good pace as I was within touching distance of the lead runners. So I took the sensible decision of falling back in line with my race pace plan of 6:15 mins per mile. A plan I never achieved, although most the miles I ran were around that time.
By mile five I was pretty much out on my own, except for a couple of Wesham runners down the road ahead of me, I couldn’t hear anyone behind me and they looked too far way to catch. This is the kind of situation I hate, there is no one to pace off, it is all down to you and if you are trying to run at an unfamiliar pace it can be hard going.
As per last year, the second half of this race featured a number of unprotected sections and you felt a strong enough breeze, to make you feel the need to put in an extra shift just to stay on pace. I myself found my face down at 6:40 a couple of times, during the windier sections. Although that is still very fast and it showed that I have become stronger than I was last year. When i dropped to over 7 minute per mile pace during these sections. However, I was still out in no mans zone and despite following this great “How to run a 10 mile race” plan, I found very difficult to up the pace and maintain a faster pace with no one around me to pace off.
However by mile eight, i started to realise that the two chaps ahead of me were actually getting closer and by mile nine, i decided to would try and catch them. As i pushed on, they split up with one of them moving on ahead of the other. This changed my focus to just one runner but also meant that they were in a battle and were now picking up the pace themselves. I did my best to try and close down at least one of them and despite reaching sub 6 minute pace at times, completing the final mile in 6:05 pace and covering the final 321 metres or so, in 5:35 pace, i narrowly missed out on catching them up.
It was a really good finish, but a shame to have spent so long out on my own and i also missed out on my 10 mile race target of going sub 1:03:00, finishing the race in 01:03:15. Close but not close enough.
Disappointed but in high spirits, is how I will sum my feelings up of this race. It’s a great PB of over a minute, just one year after setting the time. But i still think I have it in me to go under 01:03:00 for the 10 mile, so I have my eye on a couple of other 10 mile races this year. I have my new 10 mile race strategy and I have decied on a new pace plan and that plan is to set a 6:20 pace for the first six miles, as trying to 6:15 for 10 miles clearly didn’t work out for me, as my Garmin Connect splits show [here].
But I have a plan and an aim. Sub 1:03:00 for 10 miles is within reach and reach it I will!!
This race, also saw me try out my new running belt. The Fitletic Double Pouch, that I have bought, as I cannot find my other belt and rather than stress myself out looking for it. I thought it would be easier to get a new one. It fits better than my old one, although one pouch is smaller than the other for some reason. Something that might annoy me when it comes to my next marathon. But is fine for all distances below that, as you won’t need that many gels. Also, it stayed in place and was very comfortable to wear, so it was a good purchase.
Race stats : Elswick 10 mile : Saturday July 16th 10:30 am start
Distance : 10 miles
Total runners : 113
My position : 10th
My time : 01:03:15
First male : 54:47 | First female : 01:04:34
Last male : 01:46:07 | Last female : 01:54:44
Would i run it again : Yes