The Temple Newsam Ten Mile 2016
Never in my wildest dreams did I ever think I would be able to run and a ten mile ( 16 kilometres) event. To be honest it wasn’t something I thought I would actually want to do. Then to find out that The Temple Newsam Ten Mile ( TNT ) Is all off trail, muddy and on January the 8th made me think only crazy people or top athletes would do this event.
Where I was coming from
If you have read my previous blogs you would know I have had a lot of injuries in the past 10 years and I have only just recently completed my first 10km race in September The Abbey Dash. I am 47 years old and I thought to have an aim this year of just completing one, 10 kilometre race would be one of the greatest things I have ever achieved.
Nick was signed up to do the Leeds Abbey Dash ( 10 km) race in October, but couldn’t make it. So I took his place and said I would make a decision on the Ten Mile race afterwards.
The decision was made
My goal for the Abbey Dash was 55 minutes and as I ended up running it in 53.06 , I was full of confidence. From that confidence and the high I was feeling from achieving two 10 kilometre races in a year, I decided to have a go at the TNT race. The next day (October 10th ) Nick and I booked our place for the Temple Newsam Ten Mile on January the 8th 2017.
The planning and preparation
This left us 12 weeks till the TNT event, which if we planned it right, then it would all go well for completing the race. Nick and I put together a training programme where we increased our distance by one kilometre a week on our one long run of the week. We did other training of course, around 3 to 5 days a week. We did one long run once a week and added just one extra kilometre to that run.
Knowledge is king
I wanted to do it this way because I know if we increased the distance to fast I would be susceptible to more injuries. For the last ten years I have battled injuries and setbacks. All the time this was happening I was gathering knowledge on how to be able to have a strong, supple body which can now achieve The Temple Newsam Ten Mile race.
I have learnt how to eat to prevent injuries and get optimum from my body. I have learnt how to train to prevent injuries and get the most out of my body. Lastly I have also learnt how to drink to prevent injuries to my body working at its full potential.
As the race was the first weekend in January I still enjoyed my Christmas and New Year but was always mindful of the TNT looming. I still kept up training , we even ran 10 kilometres on Boxing Day.
Heart set and Mindset
Having a strong and confident mindset is major key to being able to achieve in anything. All the painful lessons I have learnt over the last ten years has enabled me to have this mindset. I mean after all if it was easy everybody would be doing it, wouldn’t they?
I knew that I did all I could do, while leading a normal life. I wanted to be able to live my life as normal as possible yet still put everything into this.
Putting your heart into anything is the thing that all success is built on. I wanted to not get bored or lose interest so I kept a good life/ training balance. What I did do was slightly change my diet over the past 4 years. Bit by bit I have developed a healthy lifestyle. I also like to have a social life. This way I am still able to have a blow out with friends and my training doesn’t suffer.
I am still able to train and have a fun life with friends. For me this enables me to put my heart into my training and achieve my targets.
- Have a goal
- Make a decision
- Have a training buddy or personal trainer
- Have balance in your life
- Have a strong and happy heartset and mindset
- Have fun
The race itself
Our best time for the distance and course was around 1 hour 40 mins. The race was set at a much faster pace than we are used to. I thought it would be and I wanted to try and get off to a good start before settling into our pace. Even though it seemed fast we just kept getting past. This made me keep up the faster pace for longer than I was wanting to.
By the three mile mark I was shattered and didn’t think I would be able to keep going the whole race. The course was extra hard to what we had expected. Although the mind is a funny thing when put under these sort of race pressures. Mentally I was gone and already giving up. Nick slipped and it looked like he banged his hand on a rail. He had only had that hand operated on a few weeks before. This switched my mind off me and onto him.
Without thinking I sprinted, caught up the two metres he was in front of me to see if his hand was ok. When he couldn’t really answer I realised he was also struggling. For some reason this made me feel a bit better. As it was a fairly flat peace of track I was able to get my breath back a bit and all of a sudden I was back in the race.
From there I just kept to my game plan of keeping my rhythm and running quickly up the hilly parts, which I did.
I must say it was the hardest thing I have ever done. The crazy stuff going on in my head through the race was hilarious in hindsight. However I just kept coming back to just enjoying the fact I was able to even compete in such an event.
With my normal sprint finish I came home in a time of 1:31:57. When I saw my time I was over the moon. I remember saying to Nick 3 weeks before the event I would like to do it in 1 hour 30 but that was before I realised how hard the course was going to be. So to finish in such a fast time , I was overjoyed!
I also know I couldn’t have done it without Nick. His support and encouragement really helped over the past few years of injuries.
It just goes to show if you plan it right and put your heart into something, ANYTHING IS POSSIBLE!