Bizarrely, my physical health has got the better of me and has prevented me from training or blogging to raise awareness for mental health issues over the past week.
I never ever get physical illnesses! Yet I do now it seems as I have been suffering with some kind of energy-sapping fever since last weekend. It’s almost like since I’ve been open about my mental health my physical health wants to demonstrate that it can be pretty nasty sometimes too! I’m on the mend now though and hopefully I’ll be fully up and running (pun intended) again shortly.
Luckily, before my illness halted me, I was able to squeeze in some preparation for my 10k. First of all I got my gear together – Mind t-shirt, new specific running trainers, high-vis jacket etc…
Then I pulled out the useful fundraising pack which Mind sent to me after I signed up. Within this I received a suggested 10k training plan which will be helpful in ensuring I keep on target and take enough rest days between runs.
Then it was time for the really serious bit – running! My background in running consists of very intermittent 30 minute runs in which I generally cover about 4.5k. Based on this, I have set myself the challenge of trying to complete the Vitality London 10k in under an hour.
Wednesday 15th February
My target on my first run was to complete 5k in 30 minutes which I thought would just about be achievable for me to set the standard going forward. As you can see from my pace chart (right), I did achieve this goal in 28.29 seconds.
I was so pleased with myself I even pushed on to reach a distance of 6.12k. Importantly, the pace of 5’55” is marginally better than the 6 mins per km that I need to find on race day.
Friday 17th February
Two days later I was out training again with the hope of keeping up my pace of less than 6 mins per km over a longer distance as I work towards the 10k mark. My target for this particular morning was 7k.
I’m not sure if it was because I was half asleep but as I began running I got it into my head that I needed to maintain a pace of less than 5 mins per km rather than 6!
As you can see from the pace chart (right), I somehow managed that pace over the first km but towards the end of the second I realised my mistake and started to find a more sustainable speed. However, my breathless start did help me reach an impressive (for me!) 7.6k in 42.57 mins at a pace of 5’38”.
I think the most encouraging part of my first serious attempts at training is that I’m generally holding my pace at 6 mins per km or less even when I’ve reached the three-quarter mark of 10k. I just need to keep pushing the distance up now to make sure I can finish!
I’ll keep you posted…