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York Run For All 10k Race Recap

August 1, 2011

Thank you all for your congratulation messages yesterday – I love the level of support you get from the blog community! I got my official chip time for the race and it matched my Garmin time exactly – 54 minutes, 25 seconds. I’m really less tired now, so it’s time for the full recap.

I made sure that we left in plenty of time to get to the start, so we had no trouble driving into York and finding a parking space on the racecourse. I’m very glad we did because apparently the traffic later on was really bad and it even delayed the start of the race by about 10 minutes. It was a great family atmosphere at the racecourse and Peter was able to come into the runner’s enclosure unlike at Leeds where it was runners only. It was really cold early on, so I was glad of the extra layers that I brought.

It warmed up just before the start, which was a good job because there was a lot of waiting around due to the delay. The delay meant that I could do a lot of posing for my personal photographer.


Where’s Wally (me)?


There was a really good atmosphere at the start, but it was much more cramped and crowded than Leeds.

Once the start gun finally went off the start went smoothly. I was able to get running as soon as I went over the start line and I didn’t waste too much time trying to run round people. The streets around York are quite narrow though, so it felt like there wasn’t a lot of space all the way around the course. As soon as I started I felt very warm and thirsty – I really regretted not having any water just before the start. Usually warm weather, running and me don’t mix very well, but I knew that I was well covered with sunscreen, so I decided just to go for it.

I was umming and ahhing about whether to wear my Garmin or not, but in the end I think it helped me to maintain my pace. I wasn’t expecting to be able to run that fast, but once I realised that I was able to maintain a 8:45 min/mile ish pace without too much difficulty, even up the (many) hills, I was determined to try to keep it up.

I was thirsty when I got to the first drinks station just after 3k, so I decided to stop for water. I don’t usually take on much water while I’m running because it makes me feel sick … and it was no different this time. I stopped to take a few sips, but then for the rest of the race I was suffering with bad nausea and heartburn. It got really tough and I thought I was going to have to stop and throw up. Around me a few people were already walking and it took all the mental strength I could muster to keep going.

Despite feeling ill and wanting to stop I found I was starting to speed up (maybe I just wanted it to be over). At around 7k I deliberately tried to slow my pace a little because otherwise I would have burnt out. For the last kilometre and a half I was starting to feel the effects of my faster than usual pace and I started repeating “I can do it” over and over in my head.

The finish line came into view from about half a kilometre away and I mentally decided that now was not the time to give up. I concentrated on feeling strong and engaging my core, still repeating my mantra over and over in my head. You can see that I’m really concentrating very hard in this photo:


When I finished I felt very nauseous and light headed, as well as very sweaty!


I sat in the shade and had lots of fluid. About half an hour after finishing I decided that I should try and force down a Trek bar, but I didn’t enjoy it at all because my heartburn was so bad. Luckily I had some antacids with me that I ended up munching all day.

In fact I didn’t feel like eating anything until about 4pm, which is very unusual for me, especially after a long hard run. I made up for it with a chinese takeaway in the evening.

After the race we walked into York, but got a bit lost, so we ended up walking another 5k! My legs were screaming at me and there was no way that I could keep up with Peter and his 39 inch legs (yes, really!). The walk probably did me good though because my legs aren’t sore at all today. My triceps however are killing me! I guess I was using my arms to propel myself, especially when the going got tough. It just goes to show that you do need to train your upper body when you run.

So I have a few questions for the runners out there:

Have you got any tips for taking on water during a race?

What is your tried and tested pre-race meal? I had toast, PB and banana that has worked for me in the past, but I don’t think it worked on Sunday.

Do your arms ever hurt after running? I think it’s a bit weird!

7 Comments leave one →
  1. August 1, 2011 6:13 pm

    My arms often hurt during running which I think is a bit weird, and probably due to my posture. You look great at the finish! I wonder if you could train yourself to be able to drink during runs? Like I read about some guy that ate curries the night before his long runs and made himself go and trained his stomach to be tougher.

  2. August 1, 2011 7:18 pm

    Awesome recap! You did so well! My shoulders always ache after longer runs. I’m not sure why.

  3. August 1, 2011 7:53 pm

    Brilliant recap, you really captured the spirit of the race. Well done for keeping going. I would totally have wimped out.

    My biceps and even shoulder muscles can ache after running, which is often due to poor form. They usually ache if I’ve been holding my arms too high and tense and bringing my forearms up and across my chest. I think the drive of your arms should be forwards, not at an angle.

    I am never releasing the photos of the end of my run for public consumption, no way! You’re very brave.

    I sip water during a race if I feel like I need it. I’ve drunk water during very hot races and felt sick and dizzy afterwards, I’ve drunk water during very hot water and felt fine. So I’m not sure what my point is there!

    My perfect pre-race breakfast is black coffee, overnight oats with yoghurt, nuts, raisins etc, and orange juice a good 3 hours before the race starts.

  4. August 1, 2011 10:14 pm

    I am so proud of you! I love how you talked yourself into continuing by motivating yourself with positive thoughts. If you could run like that in the heat you can do anything!

  5. August 2, 2011 7:28 am

    Great race recap! You did so well considering how poorly you felt. My tried and tested pre race breakfast is porridge with banana and then a little fat like a spoonful of pb or almonds. I can never eat a lot before running so I only have that if I have at least 3 hours to digest it! As for the water thing I just try and take little sips too. Well done again!

  6. August 2, 2011 12:00 pm

    Woohoo! Congrats! 🙂 My arms definitely hurt after running sometimes (usually longer distance or if I haven’t run for a while) – you’re SO not alone there. I was actually just saying that to my boyfriend the other day!

  7. August 2, 2011 9:37 pm

    I wanna run now! Not a very appropriate time though haha, I’ve been experimenting with my pre workout food lately, so far I’ve had most success with jacket potato and beans, not the best breakfast food though! My arms and back often hurt after running it’s all the pumping and upper body movemnt

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