Lawrence and I ran the Vitality British 10K last weekend and had so so so much fun doing so. Those of you who follow me on snapchat (my username is peachy_runs) already had a preview of the ambiance and how much I was enjoying myself that day. Fear not if you are not a snapchat convert yet, here is a mini race recap of the day.
Communication before race day
The race pack was very minimalist as most of the information was online. I appreciated the small “summary card” of the morning’s timeline e.g. end of bag drop, when to be in the starting pens etc. I took a picture of it and it was handy to refer back to. I was also in heaven when I discovered safety pins in my race pack, which I only opened at 10pm the night before the British 10K, as it saved me from turning our flat upside down to find some.
Getting there, bag drop and toilets
Getting there was super mega easy via the tube. We did not have any bags to leave at the bag drop but from what I saw when getting there, there was no queue. I know that I always speak about toilets etc and that it is not the most glamorous topic but it is an important one for us runners!! So I went to the toilet twice before the race and I only queued for 3min and 7min. Yes, I time these stuff so I can give you some feedback! In fact, I think that it was quicker to use the portaloos than trying to go to the nearby Prêt à manger. Speaking of Prêt, it was great to have one close to the start to have a cheeky coffee and banana before racing.
Getting to the start line
We walked near Buckingham palace to go to the start line and it was great to think that Queen Elisabeth was waving at us with encouragement (one can dream). There was a water station on the way to the starting pen. It is the first time that I see this at a race start and I thought that it was great! I did not want to carry a bottle of water but equally, I was not going to start the race and reach a water station for a while so it was a great opportunity to have another drink (which I would come to regret later as you will see).
Warm up and the start of the British 10K
I am not going to lie, waiting for the race to actually start was super mega boring. We had to go to the starting pen very early and even when the race started it took us a long time to physically cross the start line. Like over 1h. By which point we could have ran a 10K already. I was getting bored and moody and jut wanted to start running! Lawrence was pretty cool about it and said that it was like a little date. Awwww, what a cutie (just to be clear, a date because we barely sae each other that week, not a date because I am bored and moody on our dates hahaha).
The warm up was provided by Gymbox and was bad in my opinion. It seemed to be made up in the spur of the moment (the gym instructor kept saying to her colleague “what move do you want to do next”) and there was no logic into getting our heart rates up and no consideration to the space limitation! Leg swings are not physically possible in a starting pen with thousands of people around you!
Running the capital
I have really really enjoyed this race. It is probably not the one to one to sign up for if you really want a PB as it is quite crowded but a PB is achievable in my opinion. The atmosphere was incredible. One of my favourite race so far. There were lots of out and back meaning that people coming to support you could see you several times. We must have been running at a similar pace as a person with supporters as I saw a girl cheering 3 or 4 times! So although she was not there to cheer me I had a massive smile every time I would see her again! So thank you stranger.
There was lots of music on the course and with the out and back, you could enjoy it twice! I only found it quiet between 3K and 4K. There were plenty of water stations, so much for a 10K it was incredible. I do not recall seeing an energy drink one though. There were plenty of portaloos around the course too. I really wanted to go. Like really really but I also knew that Lawrence wanted to run the race in less than 1h and I did not want to stop him from getting that time so I just sucked it up and kept running.
Finishing the British 10K
It was easy to exit the finish area. We were promptly handed our medals and T-shirt as well as a goody bag and energy drinks. As mentioned before, we did not leave a bag at the bag drop but Elle told me that it was easy to get your belongings back.
We then stopped by Le Pain Quotidien for a late brunch and then headed home for a well deserved nap. That’s what a call a good Sunday!
British 10K – Would I run it again?
I would like to run it again. Perhaps not as a 10K but as part of a long run, like I did with the Winter Run a couple of years ago. Having tried to do my long runs in central London before, it is nearly impossible to run this route without having to stop all the time due to the traffic or people. At around £50 per race entry, it is not cheap. But if you want the opportunity to run in London, with an amazing atmosphere and a well organised race, go for it. You will have a great time and people coming to watch you will be able to see you many time around the course!
This race totally converted Lawrence to running again. He ran a half marathon with me a couple of years ago and absolutely did not want to run after that. With some sensible training, he really enjoyed this race. He hung up his medal within 5 min of getting home and has already told me TWICE that he wants us to sign up to a 10K together again. I am speechless. So yeah, this is a good race!!
You can pre-register now for next year’s race which will take place on the 09/7/17.
I was given a free entry to run the British 10K but we paid the full price for Lawrence’s. All opinions are my own.