Gill’s review of Brighton 10K 2015

I’d like to say I jumped out of bed and started having one of those mad, excited, hairbrush in hand, bouncing on the bed, lip synching to Cyndi Lauper ‘Girls just wanna have fun’ kinda moments but in reality I really am not a morning person until I’ve had my first cup of tea of the day. So, on little sleep and an emotional start to the day with Hugh making the tough decision not to run the marathon all I could do was hit that switch on the kettle and slowly get ready for the day ahead. I headed down to the hotel lobby with Hugh and our room buddy Jo where we met some of the other flyers before setting off for our walk down to Preston Park. After one last toilet stop we made our way into the lovely sunshine and started following other runners towards the park. Everyone was chatting and laughing and I just knew already it was going to be a great day.

We headed to our meeting point where I saw my running buddy Becks. It wasn’t long before the 10k race was about to start so we said our quick goodbyes, exchanged hugs and words of good luck then we both headed to the start line. We saw fellow flyers through the fence waving and wishing us luck as we lined up, the buzz of excitement from those around us was brilliant. Before we knew it the starting gun went and then we slowly set off, walking at first into a light jog over the start line, gave the cameras a smile and a wave until we suddenly came to a complete halt coming out of the park onto the road. We soon started running again and then got completely swept up by the mass of runners, I remember thinking ‘I’m going too quick, I won’t be able to carry on at this pace’ but we weaved in and out and the adrenaline I felt from running my first race since my foot injury seemed to help.

Running down the street we soon saw Mikki and Justin hurrying towards the park. We exchanged waves, smiles and good lucks again then we carried on at a steady pace. Chatting away and laughing we continued to weave in and out and then we ended up stuck behind some walkers, I thought, ‘walkers, surely not it’s a race, oh well at least I won’t come last’. Looping round on ourselves we tried to see if we could see Cheryl but she must have been too far ahead of us. We eventually hit 5k, just one more park run to go. We started running down towards the seafront it was at this point we heard a familiar voice shouting our names, then we spotted Lin in front of us and ran towards her giving her high fives. Just the boost we needed before turning onto the seafront. Next we came to a water station, I’d read up on pinching the cups so that it was easier to drink so new exactly what I was doing well at least I thought I did but somehow the water still managed to go everywhere apart from down my throat. Another water station came by this time I decided to slow down a bit as I pinched the cup and took a sip then just when I thought I’d mastered the whole sippy cup thing the rest of the water went right up my nose. Coughing, spluttering and laughing again we carried on running.

Becks continually kept asking if I was ok, and I just replied ‘Yep’ it was all I could muster from now on as it was starting to get hot and all I kept thinking was ‘we must be turning round soon, I don’t know how anyone could run a marathon, how are the marathon runners going to cope in this heat.’ I was starting to lag a bit at this point but Becks kept turning round smiling, saying ‘get those knees up’ and ‘ride the bike’ (arm motions that really do work). The week before at parkrun we were in fits of laughter as I suddenly blurted out to a fast runner ‘one day in my dreams I’ll be as fast as you’ and then the comments kept coming ‘one day in my dreams I’ll have legs like you’ and my all time favourite ‘one day in my dreams I’ll be as tall as you’. Becks said she was waiting for me to blurt something out so we could have a giggle, but my mind went blank at that point I couldn’t think of anything remotely funny. I just wanted to get to that turning point as all I was looking at were the people running past the other way towards the finish line who had reached that turning point already.

gill2Eventually the turning point came, I felt relieved. We started passing people on the other side that were still on their way to the turning point saying “well done” as they must have been feeling how I was feeling a few minutes previously. As we got nearer and nearer to the finish line I could hear a band playing, we were giving kids high fives as we went past. We hit another water station but I decided I didn’t want another attack of the sippy cup situation so gave it a miss seeing as the big wheel was in sight. I could finally see the finish line and heard them announce that Adam Hicky had come second, we both clapped, smiled and seeing the time on the clock I gave one last little push to get under 1.09. We did it! We pretended to do the marathon minus the 20 odd miles in between and we were so happy. We picked up our medals, t-shirts, water, snacks, drinks, and foil ‘supergirl’ cape yes thats right I couldn’t help but strike a pose. We also took some celebratory selfies and got our official pics taken too.

gill1I’ve only ran a few 10k races in the past but think this race has been my favourite one to date. The atmosphere was amazing and the course was good. I’m happy to say my chip time was 1.07.05. It wasn’t a PB but considering the stopping, starting, weaving in and out of runners and walkers I had the best run I’ve had in ages. I think this is all thanks to my super smiley running buddy Becks who kept me on track the whole time. I would definitely recommend the Brighton 10k especially as you get the best of both worlds of being able to run and then being able to support everyone else running in the marathon. As part of the support crew I looked on in awe at people around the marathon course and thought to myself ‘one day in my dreams I’ll be able to run a marathon like you’. Or maybe just maybe that dream will become a reality for my little legs one day.

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