Hello, hello! Coming to you from a very rainy day, and though it feels like I have not felt the warm sun on my back for a couple days now, I am in a very joyous mood. I’ve been hitting my running, my lifts have been getting done, and I’m feeling really strong and really good. I’m feeling positive, and I’m hoping to carry this attitude for as long as I can.
Right, so, this post is not about the future, but rather an event that has occurred recently – the NYRR Queens 10K. I ran it with my dad, who is also a running aficionado, and we did pretty well, if I do say so myself. I went a personal best, with a time of 58:57, and negative split the race.
I started out the race easy jogging, as I had no goals for it. I just wanted to enjoy the run and have a great morning with my dad. And for the first half of the race, that’s exactly what we did. The problem was that at the 5K, we were well above 30 minutes, and our semi-goal had been to stay under the hour. So as soon as my dad commented that we’d never break the hour with that split, I knew we had to descend and negative split and not only break the hour, but achieve a personal best (for me).
By mile 6, we were running 8-something minute miles – after starting at 10 minutes. Although the end time was a success, the race was just run poorly. I needed to be more warmed up, and have started at a faster pace, in order to have a more even pace throughout. Whilst pushing myself to the limit at the end was fun, I know that’s not a sustainable practice for any halves or marathons in my future. And that was my biggest, most important take away from this weekend – the importance of a good warm up. I don’t think I’m that unique in this respect, but if I don’t have a long warm up prior to a race, the first half of the race itself ends up becoming my warm up (which slows me down – duh).
What can I give you from my experience? Let’s see.
- Well, obviously, do a warm up! Try out a few prior to your own practice or lift or whatever, and see which one you like best. See what works for you and what works against you, or maybe how you can best adapt something someone else does to work for you.
- Practice actually works – if you put in the time, you will get better. This race for me was non-tapered, just like my last 10K, but I had so much more fuel in the tank this time around. Even though I’ve been lifting and running hard throughout it, I felt really good and I know it’s the hours that I’ve been putting in.
- A good pair of sneakers can change your life. I ran this 10K with an old pair of Mizunos, and had to wear a knee wrap because they were so worn out they bothered my knee. But two days later, when I wore my new Adidas, my knee was perfectly fine.
- Chafing is real, and it’s rough AF. Honestly, I have known this for a very long time, but I don’t think it ever hurts to repeat this. While I haven’t found any cream that actually prevents it or helps a lot, I do try to stick to leggings when running longish distances. It definitely beats the alternative of just being in pain.
Love, xx Giorgia