Richmond Deer Park 10K: Sunday Race

I’m not used to relying on other people when preparing for a race, so in true control freak style, I sorted out the race numbers, my kit and set the alarm in good time. Bearing in mind R only just manages to fall out of bed around midday on the weekend I was a bit worried we would over sleep, so I was aiming for a 6:30 start – with a view to get out the house by 7:45. Just in case!
Pre Race Tension!
R doing his best De Niro impression and pretending not to be nervous 

I neglected to check that the alarm was set to the correct schedule. Cue mass hysteria when I wake up and see not only has the alarm not got off, but its already 7:30. I have never seen R get out of bed so quickly, possibly spurred into action by the number of expletives I’m shrieking while knocking over a bed room chair, stubbing a toe and losing my hair brush. Somehow, amid the chaos we manage to pull on our kit, find our race numbers and get on the tube by 8am. Just.

So here we are, Sunday morning. First thing. Its absolutely freezing and really foggy. So much so that the tube driver, is on a literal ‘go slow’ from Turnham Green all the way to Richmond as the visibility is so bad. We make it to Richmond Deer Park in good time. I’ve not read the best reviews on this particular race so I’m prepared for the worst. Thankfully it appears to have improved on last year and the race starts on time at 9:15am.

The 10K running route

Due to the fog and the cold, it wasn’t easy going early on, but we managed to get to 5K without incident. Besides seeing some poor girl run straight into a pole while not paying attention to the road, and, well the mist didn’t help!

I was looking forward to the stretch along the Thames, however the fog didn’t allow for much sight seeing at all, and so we were left with crazy people watching – and trying to dodge poor dog walkers and cyclists who hadn’t adhered to the race warnings.

All in all a really good race, and a possible personal best! My GPS and the Timex times are in slight dispute but either way its looking like around the 1hr 5mins 49secs mark. Which will do nicely bearing in mind we were off to a pretty slow start initially!

Done and Dusted!

By 10:30am we were headed back to Notting Hill, rainbow medals (?!) in hand. R was suitably chuffed with his first race and we’re all on track with our training for the February Brighton Half marathon.

So all that was left to do on a chilly Sunday was hit the Portobello road in search for warming (and massive!) Sunday Roast. Bring it!

Portobello Organic Kitchen roast chicken dinner

Numbers Up!

Our race numbers have arrived! Very exciting to be running a race with R for the first time. We’ve entered the Richmond the 10K on Nov 20th which should be interesting. Its a mix of road and trail, we’ve mostly been training on the road due to the darker evenings, but I’m hoping R takes to the trail routes too – I much prefer them. And there’s less traffic so infinitely less things to fall out about…
I have far fetched visions of trail races in the Highlands, or weekend retreats to the Lakes with a few good runs thrown in for good measure. I’m hooked. Running holidays are beginning to feature more heavily in my google history which completely goes against my usual ‘pack a bikini and do nothing’ mantra. These look amazing:
Perfect, and the dog would be welcome too! 
I love the name of this website (Jelley = the name of the founder)
For when I’m super-obsessed and running marathons for fun
But that’s a long way off, for now we need to smash this 10K and then start the REAL training for the half marathon in Feb… count down beginning!¬†

Strike a Pose

I’ve never understood the point of fashion in sport’s apparel. I especially don’t care for spending cash on items of clothing that are going to get soaked in sweat, covered in mud and or/ rained on infrequently in smoggy old London.

So why then, when I audit my monthly spending, am I seeing more of my hard earned cash going to the likes of Runner’s Need? Its the curse of any really good hobby, you start to get really geeky about the details. The proper trainers that support your ankles, the difference wicking fabric makes, discovering compression socks that aid recovery (yes really!) and good running headphones so you’re not faffing about with wires and rubbish sound. That and I love to accessorise. So its not a huge surprise really. Its just the occasion that’s changed. I have yet to buy my new winter boots (mine are now two seasons old – shock horror!) but I have new running tights, sports bras and winter tops.

Times have most certainly changed. On the way back from brunch with a friend of mine, rather than popping into the many lovely boutique shops in Chiswick, I spent a good 20 minutes in Sweaty Betty looking at High Vis clothing and chatting to the lovely staff about half marathons (and the hazards of running with the significant other!). And of course I walk out thoroughly over excited about having purchased a bright yellow vest. Its called the Lightening Vest and its will be perfect for my evening training runs in the bleak mid winter. I’ll be visible from space. And it cost about the same as a nice pair of courts in the Office shoe sale….So it official, I have lost my mind.

But at least I am in good company. Leaving the house this afternoon to catch up on the week’s mileage, R emerged from the front door looking like a cross between Rambo and Kevin Bacon in Footloose. Complete with Nike head band and HUGE headphones. He’s never left the 70’s. So its fashion, but of a different sort, and its certainly not taking itself too seriously, and I don’t have to bother with any dry cleaning!