Bolton 10k 2009 Race Report – a sunny 51:12

Posted on Apr 26, 2009 under 10k, Races | No Comment

My preparations for this race had not been the best, what with bereavement, a funeral, wills and all sorts of correspondence! Had managed less than 10 miles a week the previous 2 weeks, so had decided to just run the first half of the race easy, then see how I felt.

I was up early to a glorious looking day, and walked the dog – it felt decidedly chilly but the rising sun suggested it could get very warm while running. I had to be in Bolton for the 9am start, and also had to collect my number and timing chip, so had booked a cab with plenty of time to spare. I always seem to get the same driver early on Sundays and sure enough he turned up, and remembered the last time he drove me out to the Boggart Chase 10k, which had also been a nice day. We chatted as his sat nav took us along the shortest route. Got to Bolton in plenty of time; a couple of online friends from a running forum, Dawn and Neil were in the race so I was looking out for them but couldn’t spot them. I got a locker ok and located several lineups for toilets before finding a less well known one hidden away! Nobody seemed to know where the start was, but eventually droves of people were heading in one direction. I ran around a bit for a warm up and then it was time to line up. I had a few things going around in my head, but felt quite good.

The gun went off, and off we went. I spotted Louise Gilchrist in front of me and decided to keep her in my sights as I know she’s a 50ish 10ker (at 76!). I did the first k in 5:01, then there was a bit of a hill which I attacked, and I was feeling good, but determined not to push too hard too soon. It was starting to feel warm and Louise had pulled away into the distance somewhere, but I kept to my own pace and was running around 5 minute k’s. About 4 or 5 k’s though I seemed to slow to 5:20, and at the 5k mark I decided to push harder, producing a 4:49, I overtook quite a few people, and had caught up to Louise by the time we reached the big hill at 6k (it hadn’t seemed to steep driving up it in the taxi!) – it took it out of my legs a bit but I refused to stop. Louise took a little breather, and I overtook her, and felt good when I crested the hill – until this marvellous lady came flying past me again! The downhill stretch was a relief but I was starting to tire and can’t remember much about the last 2k apart from this chap cheering me on, I had no idea who he was at the time, didn’t even really know who I was (it was actually Neil one of the online people!). By the time I got onto the athletics track for the finish, I had nothing left for a sprint and just kind of stumbled over the line. I certainly felt the lack of miles in my legs by that point, and PBing off less than 10 miles a week is not going to keep happening. But my time wasn’t bad at all in the context of my other times, at 51:12 it wasn’t far off my PB and with some proper training in coming weeks, I am going to smash that 50 minute barrier soon!

Afterwards I cheered on some of the later runners and Neil came and found me, then we went and cheered Dawn in. It was really good to meet a couple of other runners I had only been in touch with through email, and they are thoroughly lovely people. I went off to wait for my taxi and they offered me a lift, but I doubt the taxi driver would have been pleased as I hadn’t paid him for the trip yet and he knows where I live! He did turn up a little late but got me home safely, and I relaxed for the rest of the day. I will certainly revisit the Bolton 10k next year, and look forward to more races and better times 🙂

Leave a Reply