|Sport’n Style: WOTN London|
Weather checked. Outfit prepped the night before. Obligatory picture taken of it beautifully laid out. Then bed.
|May 10th is here.|
Somehow when I arrived at the race village it was a lot colder than anticipated. I was one of very few wearing shorts it seemed but somehow I thought this would be more comfortable should the heavy rain forecasted actually realise itself. Luckily the downpour came as we made our way to the race village then pretty much held up for the rest of the evening. The wind however, was bitterly cold.
Bag dropped. Toilet stop. All set. Oh except the walk to the race village took a little longer than expected so we missed the amazing looking warm up led by Equinox on the main stage! I figured I would do what I always do and use my first km as a warm up…ease into my race pace.
I’ve never been so eager to run as I knew I would warm up once I had set off. I headed to the green start pen for those of us aiming to run <60 minutes.
|at the start line|
|at the start line with Alicia|
Everything started bang on time with runners leaving in waves. Not too long, and my wave was off! Within no time at all 1km was down. My aim was to keep the 60 min pacer within gaze and keep a steady pace. By about the 3km mark, we had passed the 60 minute pacer. My Nike+ app kept me informed every 0.5km of my average and I kept an eye on my current pace in between. It’s like a whole heap of mathematics while on the run!
I didn’t study the route so hadn’t realised it was two laps of Victoria Park. I know one side of the park very well as I teach there regularly on a Saturday morning so it was like sightseeing running through the other side. It was interesting to see the park go from evening light through to darkness while running and seeing the parts I already knew from a different perspective!
5km done. Half way and I knew what the rest of the race looked like. Tunnels of bright lights and music. Bands playing upbeat tunes. Spectators lining the course despite the dreadful weather. It certainly could be worse.
Somehow my 6th km ended up being my fastest. I quieted my mind of negative self talk and listened to my body. Nothing was hurting, and my breathing was under control so the only thing stopping me was my mind. Hussssssshhhhhhhhhhh. I focused on my running form…making my strides long and light.
7km. Things got tougher here but after coming this far, you can’t give up. 8km. 8.5km is probably one of my favourite places in a 10km race. Just 1.5km to go. Nothing in comparison to how far you have come already.
9km. Then 600m to go! 500m to go! Just a few hundred metres more when the finish line comes into sight. Half of you wants to walk to the end, half of you wants to sprint. A tiny piece in the middle wants to keep going cos so many people are watching! In my head I sprinted to the finish but in reality it probably looked nothing like a sprint. Either way, I crossed the finish line.
|The End. Literally.|
Nike+ time: 1:00:30
WOTN Offical time: 1:01:02
|strangest splits from the official timers|
The first thing I was handed post finish was a bottle of water. Grateful. I took a few sips at the water stations around the 3km / 7km markers but couldn’t drink too much as I had quite a full stomach from eating dinner too close to the start of the race. Next, Vita Coco lemonade – a brand new flavour they were launching at WOTN!
All I could think was where is my necklace?! I ran for that thing! …goody bag with popcorn. Walk some more. A little further and FINALLY we were each handed a cute box which contained our very own Alex Monroe x Liberty WOTN necklace!! One thing I love about a necklace is that I can rock this any day, anywhere and no one will look at me strangely! I rocked mine to work the next day hidden under a scarf which I hoisted up for the select few colleagues I showed off to!
|Image from NTC Facebook page|
Oh and by the way, I never did see the 60 minute pacer again. Strange considering I finished over the hour.
Anyway, I headed straight for the toilets while there was no queue whatsoever then to collect my bag. All the quicker runners were done so there was no queue for that either. I put on all my layers as quick as I could and tried to find all my friends! Not so successful.
|my (full) name listed on the WOTN wall of fame|
I did find the WOTN wall with everyone’s names on though. I also found the voucher for a free glass of prossecco which I managed to get once I sifted through the 25 person deep queue at the runners bar! Unfortunately, I was too cold and hungry to hang around to find anyone and party! Had I of stayed, I’m sure I would’ve had a night to remember!
|at the bar|
I took my night (which was now owned btw) and headed home with all the other ladies in blue.
#WEOWNTHENIGHT London. 2014.
|Image from Nike Running UK Facebook page|
WOTN Amsterdam, I’m coming to get you. I’m eagerly awaiting the unveil of the medal / t-shirt to see what the colour scheme is! I’m kinda hoping it’s not the same as London! Until then, I’ll be working on speed – shorter runs to help me get out of my comfort zone pace. I know I can run 10km, now I want to run it faster.
Did you take part last year?! How did it compare?! …maybe it’s now on your race list for 2015?!
Elle 🙂 x
Lessons for next time:
– pack a couple extra layers just incase
– start in a faster pen to help motivate pace / reduce crowding
– eat at least 3 hours before the start of the race or eat a lighter meal at least 2 hours before the start
– if you want to PB run with those who can run your pace or faster, don’t be afraid to leave friends behind! you can cheer them on when they come through the finish line!
– arrange a meeting point with friends for when you are all done racing