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This summer, park run are holding two 10km runs, longer than the usual 5km. The first run, in St.Anne’s Park, Raheny was on May 22nd. If you didn’t make this, the second run is around the grounds of Malahide Castle on Sunday July 3rd at 10am. All info regarding entry fee, the race course and how to sign up can be found at www.summerparkseries.com.
Whether it is your first 10km, or you are a veteran 10km runner, preparation is equally as important and makes the event far more enjoyable and stress free.
During the week before the race, take it easy. At this stage all your training should be completed and you should hopefully be able to run at least 8km quite comfortably. Any additional long runs, hill runs or speed training will not make a difference, and possibly make the run more difficult on race day. Try to avoid alcohol over the couple of days before the race and keep hydrated.
Lay out everything you need the night before your race e.g. bib, safety pins, clothing, socks, headband etc. This will help avoid unnecessary stress and panic on race morning if you can’t find what you need. Do not plan on wearing a brand new singlet or shorts if you haven’t already tried running in it. Race day is not a day to worry about how you look! If it is a cold or wet morning, take an old jacket/black bag which you can throw away just before the start. The day before, try eating carbs in small portions throughout the day, rather than polishing off a huge bowl of pasta the night before the race.
On the morning of the 10km run, try to eat whatever has worked best for you before a run, something that gives you energy without upsetting your tummy. Avoid eating anything heavy within two hours of the run. Drink plenty of water when you get up, but try to stop one hour before the race to prevent a last minute dash to the toilet, or possibly developing a stitch at the beginning of the run. Avoid caffeine as this may upset your stomach.
Hold back and watch your pace at the beginning of the race. The temptation to start fast and run with the crowd is risky, and could cause you to burn out in the second half of the run. Relax and enjoy the atmosphere. Don’t be concerned about how fast those around you are going. Run at the pace you had planned, that is just slightly faster than your normal training pace. Save any extra energy you have for a sprint finish! You should not need to have energy gels or eat jellies over a 10km distance.
When you cross the finish line, keep moving for at least 10 minutes to gradually allow your heart rate return to its resting rate, and avoid stiffness. Before cooling down, allow some time to stretch out all the major muscle groups in your legs. Refuel within 30 minutes of finishing the race. A snack that provides a combination of protein and healthy carbs to restore your energy stores is ideal. Most importantly, get rehydrating to replace fluids lost during the race.
If you experience any niggles or post race injuries, our physiotherapists here at Ballsbridge Physiotherapy Clinic can help you out and get you back into training for your next 10km. Contact us here for an appointment.