It has been a hot week. Reading University’s weather station recorded the hottest temperature of the not only this year, but of the last three years, at 5:09pm – 28.9C. Not ideal conditions for racing, which was a problem as I was entered for the second race in the Yateley 10k series. The race organisers had taken note of the conditions by adding an extra drinks point.
I ran 45:01 in the first race and my race plan consisted of starting at a similar pace to last time and then to see how I felt running in the heat. It is quite a while since I have run on a really hot day and my past experiences in the heat have not been good.
We lined up in a similar place to last time and started at a reasonable pace – careful not to go off too fast. The first part of the course has some uphills in it and the first two km were fairly even: 4:35 and 4:37.
The third km included the first drinks point and I really needed some water at this point. I lost a few seconds making sure I collected a drink an so the km was a little slower: 4:41.
The fourth km includes a decent downhill stretch and I allowed myself to speed up a bit. It was noticeable by now that we were overtaking quite a few people. The 3:56 for the km did not feel too fast.
From here it was a case of making sure that my pace did not drop. The second water point was towards the end of this km and I made a mess of taking the water and splashed a cup of water over the child handing it out. Ooops! A few more seconds lost to make sure I got a drink: 4:39.
During the next two km I kept pushing the pace and my friend did ask why we were going so fast. By this time we were steadily overtaking the line of runners. 4:13 and 4:21 shows that this was where I gained some time on my PB.
The eight km was tough work and my pace started to drop. The km split was 4:43 and seeing that spurred me on to start increasing the pace.
It was tough by this point, but we were in the shade for parts and that was appreciated. I took on a little more water – to wet my mouth, so that I would not be distracted by it feeling dry. Slightly faster – 4:31.
The last km starts with a uphill section. At the start of this I increased my effort and my friend wished me good luck and told me to get moving quickly. I told him to keep his pace up and that he could still get a new PB. I tried to sprint in the field but failed and kept to a steady pace – I had nothing left to give for the last 100m. A 4:15 last km.
Overall a time of 44:30 – giving me a twenty second PB! I am pleased to have run so well – particularly on such a hot evening.