Was I mad to sign up for the Derby 10k run! Yep!
I was sat in a meeting one day, in a wintery old Derby and talking at that time about the forthcoming Flanders bike ride! When an associate of mine, Ian Randle from Konnect-IT suggested we entered the Cooper Parry sponsored Team Challenge at the Derby 10k run.
“Yeah” I shouted “I’m up for that!” – This is where I think I went wrong!
So 10k is approx. 6.7 Miles, I was due to do 83km on our bikes at the Tour of Flanders so shouldn’t have been too bad. Flanders I found great and so much easier than I had envisaged.
Training for the run was hard, I had a couple of Gym sessions, a bit of swimming and my treadmill. First off, it does help if you know what measurements your treadmill are in, I had mine in KM at first and though I was doing really well.
In the end the most I could get out of my little (yet long) legs was 2.6 miles before the acids kicked in and slowly turned into a Jelly!
Even the week before the actual race, I did the traveling to Alicante and Venice for my travel reviews, according to my Jawbone UP I had walked about 20 miles over the weekend.
But before I knew it race day was here…
I was at my office on Pride Park quite early, waiting for Ms Gorman to confirm her whereabouts. She was still at home and I wanted to be where everybody else was, soaking in the pre race vibe.
I walked across to the Pedigree Suite, in my racewear and met up with Ian (Randle) he gave me my number and electronic tab, I helped myself to a tea and waited to have the team photograph, once Ms Gorman had turned up that is!
Eventually we were called outside to the warm up with Gem 106, my son and my ex had come to watch me and I was greeted by a massive cuddle from Charlie. My warm up wasn’t the most enthusiastic and I probably made the mistake of putting Charlie on my shoulder, he is heavy now.
At about 9.10 we went to our “Pen” – for some reason I had been selected for E, which when I read it was sub 60 minutes. I knew this wasn’t achievable and was happy to hit a target of 1hr 30 mins.
At just past 9.30 the front runners started, we started about 5 minutes later. I made sure I had got all my app’s ready, my Jawbone Up and my NikeID Trainers connected to my phone.
I jogged the first section of Pride Park, heading up Riverside Way towards the bridge that connects the business park with the main drag into Derby. I found the bridge difficult to go up, but had one of my Torq Gels to give me a boost to go back down the otherside. By the time I got to the bottom of Pride Parkway near the old Cockpit Island, my jog had slowed into a walk.
I was out of breath but a few cheers from the crowds waiting on the corner were a great boost to speed up slightly. From there we headed under the car park and right onto East Street opposite the Casino, I was still jogging, if not a little slow but still couldn’t be classed as walking.
As I turned righ, to go down St Peters Street, my brother in-law (who works for Greggs) was standing at the doorway. I remember shouting “Give us a Greggs” and it was followed by cheers of support all the way down to the bottom.
The race went on and around the streets of Derby, from Victoria Street to Sadler Gate, up Iron Gate and around Full Street. By this point I was in pain, the back of my legs were hurting and according to my phone I had 6-7 km left to go. I sped up past the Casino and left towards the River Gardens, at the bottom by the river there was a very loud lady shouting out our numbers telling us to go faster.
We went under the bridge and could see the refreshment table in the distance, that was my first goal! Get to the water, I was probably stumbling more than running at this point but I reached out for a cup, missed my mouth slightly but polished the water off in no time at all, a second cup from the right handside helped, followed by another Gel.
A familiar faced black guy tapped me on the shoulder, asked how I was and asked me if I needed a running partner, I told him to carry on as I’d slow him down and quickly walked to the end of the Bass Recreation ground, before turning left back onto Pride Parkway to head back onto the bridge to go onto Pride Park.
That bridge on the way back was a killer, I had no choice but to walk and another Gel was released. I’m not actually sure if these Gel’s do anything but it gives me a bit of hope. Back down the bridge and this time we are going straight on past the VW and Seat car dealerships, before taking a right up Derwent Parade towards the Derby County Football Club Stadium.
Crowds were lined up either side, but a small voice called out to me over everyone elses. There was my son Charlie in his purple Cocoon hoodie with his hand up, I crossed a load of runners, jogging whilst holding my hand out to high five him on the way past. I can’t tell you what a good feeling this was to me and gave me another boost of energy helping me jog from that section, back on myself and back down Riverside Way towards David Lloyd Leisure.
We headed a tight right turn, where 15 to twenty people had to squeeze around the bend and filter through nicely. It didn’t work to well and the lady in front of me lost her balance, I went to avoid and twisted and pulled something in my foot. It didn’t hurt at first but as I went on the pain was getting deeper and deeper.
We went under the road bridge and turned right to come up the back of the stadium, I was walking again, more limping than anything towards the ground. There was a lady who was handing out Jelly Beans, I took a handful and swallowed them whole.
We turned right to go up and around the stadium, I actually bumped into one of my sisters friends Nikki and she helped push me on giving me extra support, before heading into the ground to go under the finishing line and completing the challenge.
To many people, this isn’t as much of a challenge. To me it was a fantastic achievement, I’m not a runner and not particularly fit but I had completed everything I had set out to do.
I checked the time on my phone and it said approx. 1hr 24m, it was only a few hours later when I checked the official results that I realisied I had done it in less than 1hr 13mins, what a feeling!