Tag Archives: 10k

Kingston 10k

On Sunday the 27th of November I took part in the Energized Sports Kingston 10k. I signed up a couple of months back due to the fact Lorna, our flatmate Liv and her boyfriend Toby wanted to do a 10k race. Not including the Battersea Park 10k, which I took part in after big mileage during the day, the last 10k I took part in was the Fast Friday track race put on by Orion Harriers in June (back then I clocked 34:50). Leading up to the race in Kingston I made it to Track Tuesday consistently and I could feel the speed work paying off. Unfortunately, two weeks before race day I picked up the lurgy. It wiped me out completely and so I only took part in the work run club when needed and did the bare minimum for a couple of weeks. I found it really frustrating not being able to train properly especially because I knew track was making a big difference. Although I really wanted to go I had to give it a miss the week before the 10k. I couldn’t complain too much because I knew I’d be back on track (literally) pretty quickly.

Race day was getting closer and closer and I wasn’t feeling much better. I rested on the Friday and Saturday to give myself the best chance of being fit but to no real avail. Waking up on Sunday morning I still felt a bit light headed and my stomach wasn’t 100%. I had already made my mind up that I was going to race and just give it my best. It was an early start, Lorna, Liv, Toby and I caught the 7:22 train from Vauxhall to Kingston. Unfortunately Lorna’s injury didn’t improve in time for her to be able to run; therefore she was on dog-sitting duties looking after Hank whilst Michalis ran. Walking to the Hawker Centre it was really quiet along the river, I guess because it was freezing cold! We were all thinking “Why are we doing this!” Arriving at the centre with plenty of time before the start, it was nice to be able to walk up to the organiser sand be able to pick up my race number without having to queue in the cold. Lorna and I kept warm inside the centre and she helped pin on my race number.

As start time neared we met up with Michalis, Lorna looked after Hank and we went for a little jog down the road to warm up. Having not seen Michalis since the Athens Marathon he let me know how it went and we talked about training and future race plans etc. When we made it back to the start area everyone was taking part in the warm up and there were only a few minutes until gun time. With the standard “3,2,1…go!” we were off. 

My legs felt good after the warm up so I decided to set off at around 3:30min/km pace, I knew if I could maintain this pace I would finish in around 36 minutes and that would be ok taking into consideration not feeling 100%. On the start line I recognised a runner; he often comes into The Running Works and runs with the Ravens that we see training around Shadwell Basin when we are on our lunchtime run club. Having spoken to him before I knew he would be aiming for a similar time to me, I decided to catch up and use him as a bit of a pacer.

The first couple of kilometres went by really quickly a) because it’s not very often that I run at 3:30min/km pace and b) because I had a “pacer”. Around 4/5kms problems began to arise, the firm road was replaced with muddy towpath, I wasn’t feeling too great and the runner I was trying to use as a pacer was quicker than me and opening up a bit of a gap. Luckily he was still in sight and I could motivate myself by trying to keep the gap as small as possible. I held a pretty consistent pace but despite my legs feeling good I just couldn’t pick it up. Just after the 6k point I ran passed Lorna and Hank, it was great to see them and it gave me a little boost. 

I started thinking “there’s only 3.6k to go, that’s just 9 laps of a track”. The last couple of kilometres were hard work, I was tiring but managed to keep my pace sub 3:45min/km. I was completely unaware but another runner was creeping up behind me; he had obviously planned a sprint finish to pass me. Luckily I heard him with 200m or so to go and just had enough in the tank to outsprint him. I crossed the line in 36:16 in 9th position, all in all not a bad result. 

Here’s a map of the route and my splits from Strava:


Lorna & Hank met me at the finish, I had some cuddles with Hank and we cheered Michalis, Toby & Liv through the finish line. Michalis ran spot on 45 minutes, really impressive given how close this race was to Athens Marathon. Toby and Liv also ran really well, Liv finished 5th female! Well done guys.

Overall the Kingston 10k was a great race. It’s really well organised and the route is flat and fast. It’s probably not quite a PB course due to the muddy sections, a few sharp corners and the roads not being closed to the public but I’d definitely recommend it as a relatively cheap fun race to do.

I hope everyone that was racing and/or training over the weekend had a good one. I haven’t got any races lined up for the next few weeks but I’m looking forward to taking part in Advent Running. I’ll see a lot of you at the events in London.

Steve 

LBH No bridges relay, Fast Friday & Harry Hawkes 10

On Wednesday the 22nd of June I took part in the LBH relays. Normally the route is along the river near Westminster bridge but due to roadworks and the referendum the race had to be moved to near the O2. I ran in the LBH Bridges Relay last year and really enjoyed it. It was a 2.3 mile lap including having to cross a couple of bridges and go round a few sharp corners. Our team, including the super quick duo of Pete Huck and Kip, managed to win by a pretty big margin. 
This year we sorted a team in short notice. In my team was Ben Johnson, Luca Guarnieri and Pete Huck. As we were walking to the start area you could tell we weren’t exactly pumped up for it. We had all taken part in the track session on Tuesday night and because Luca didn’t know we were running until the afternoon he had already ran 20k that day. Not ideal race prep. However it was good to turn up and represent Run-Fast, we supply the race bibs for the event. 

I ran the first leg for our team. Similarly to last year I was about a minute off the lead when I handed over to Luca. Due to running the City of London Mile a few days before and the track session I was happy with posting a time of 12:07 for 2.3 miles. Considering having 20k in his legs Luca ran a solid leg and then Ben and Pete sped round the course. Pete clocked the quicker slap of the evening in eleven minutes. We had managed to finish top 10 which was a good effort, some of the teams there were pretty quick.  

 Wanting to take part in Night of the 10,000 PBs next year I decided it would be good to get a track race under my belt. My colleague Mary let me know about Fast Friday that Orion Harriers put on so I decided to sign up. I opted to take part in the 10,000m race as I wanted to see what 25 laps of a track felt like. As my 10k PB on road was 34:58 I put down 35 minutes as my goal time knowing my legs wouldn’t be fresh post City of London Mile etc. 

After work I headed to Walthamstow track and arrived approximately an hour before the 8:15 start. I picked up my race number and caught up with Mary whilst watching the first couple of races. 

 Martin and Lydia who I know through the Running Works were racing so it was good to watch and cheer them on. I ran a couple of laps of the track to warm up but before I knew it the race was starting. My legs were feeling a bit tired from track and the LBH relays in the week but I was hoping they’d loosen up after a couple of laps.

Luckily for me they had to combine two of the 10k races due to the floodlights not working. I thought it would be better to be in a race with more people around. Another good thing was that there was a pacer on 35min pace for the first 9 laps. I went out a bit quicker than this but after a couple laps settled in behind the pacer. I held 3:30min/km for the majority of the race and the laps soon went. There were a couple of other runners around me and we took it in turns going in front. 

With a few laps to go my legs were still feeling good so I upped my pace to make sure I’d go sub 35 minutes. I finished in 34:50, I really enjoyed my first track race and can’t wait to do another one. Hopefully I can taper for my next track race and maybe post a time in the low 34 minutes if not quicker. After my race I watched the 5,000m A race. Adam Kirk-Smith who used to live with Mary and runs at track smashed it running sub 15 minutes. It’s great doing events like this and watching and running with people quicker than you. It makes me want to train harder and get to that level.

To finish my week of racing I took part in the Harry Hawkes 10 miler on the Sunday. Having ran the race with my girlfriend Lorna in 2015 I knew it was a good fun event to do. Lorna was running it again but was using it as more of a training run having done a long run the day before. I had rested post Fast Friday and so was hoping for a 10 mile PB (having not raced many 10 milers before).

My primary aim was to run sub 60 minutes. Having run half marathons at quicker than that pace I thought it would be doable but I didn’t know how tired my legs would be. Off the start I was close to my half marathon pace but after a couple of miles I realised my legs were pretty tired.  

I had to ease off but managed to finish in a time of 59 minutes. I really enjoy the Harry Hawkes 10 route along the river. As long as it fits in the race calendar I’ll always be back. 

Lorna ran really well finishing only a couple of minutes slower than last year. This was good considering we ran 71 minutes last year together, she had done a long run the day before and had to stop to tie her shoelaces.  

    
 Overall it was a busy 8 days but I’m happy with the results:

City of London Mile: 4:43 (PB)

LBH Bridges (No bridges) Relay: 12:07 (all important 2.3 mile PB)

Fast Friday: 34:50 (10,000m PB)

Harry Hawkes 10: 59:00 (10M PB)

See a lot of you soon

Steve

The Run Through Battersea Park 10k January 16th 2016

On Saturday I took part in my first race of the year. I signed up with a group of friends, mainly because we enjoyed the Run Through Battersea Park 5k near the end of 2015. Being in marathon training I’ve been doing relatively high mileage weeks and therefore I didn’t set a goal time and was definitely not aiming for a PB. In December I ran a lot, mainly because I was doing Advent Running and I wanted to get in good mileage which would equate to base fitness to start marathon training. On Saturday morning I woke up quite early to head across the city, I was really excited to be racing again. I got to Battersea Park in plenty of time so I collected my number with ease, the Run Through races are always well organised in regards to number collection, bag drop etc. I met with friends and went through the normal “How are you feeling? Are you aiming for a time?” pre-race chat. We did a little bit of a jog to warm up and headed to the start line.
Once we got to the start we all positioned ourselves according to our expected finish times. Myself and Jonny went near the front knowing we’d run about 37-38 minutes or so and that we’d finish quite near the front. I bumped into George Lloyd on the start line; he’d been in The Running Works on a couple of occasions. He was a speaker at our Beyond 26.2 (ultramarathon) running event with OMM and for a triathlon seminar. We had a quick catch up before the start but then we were off. A few runners went out in front and opened up a gap quickly. Myself and Jonny set off around 3:45 min/km pace. We held this pace for the majority of the race and this meant we overtook a few people on the third lap.
Having already run 90k+ throughout the week my legs were starting to feel a bit cranky on the third lap. Just after going through the finish area for the third time I could see George through the trees around a corner. He was probably about 400-500 metres in front of me and Jonny. I was in two minds as to whether to go for it and try and catch him or just hold the 3:45 min/km pace I was around. I took the corner where I’d seen George and decided to start upping it, even if I couldn’t catch him it would mean the race would be done quicker. Also I’m pretty competitive and like a challenge. As I kept pushing the pace I was closing the gap, I got onto the long home straight about 50-100m behind him and went up another gear to catch him. With 50m or so to go I was on his shoulder, he must’ve heard my footsteps as he turned around and said “Shit, Steve!” It was a funny moment. He upped his pace but because I was already sprinting I went passed and finished just a few seconds before him. 

After the race we had a chat and George let me know he got a 10k PB, I love it when people race each other and then that results in someone getting a personal best. If you’re reading this George, well done, especially considering the cold.

I really enjoy the Run Through Battersea Park races, they are perfect for getting PBs and testing your speed. Shortly after crossing the line Jonny came storming through, he smashed his 10k PB finishing in around 36:30. A lot of the group achieved personal bests; I think Mark knocked a bit of time off, being paced by Bart. Hanif, Michalis & Alice all finished strongly and in great times too. Lorna and Liv also did really well. Liv has recently started running due to living with Lorna, she took part in Advent Running and then Lorna signed her up for the 10k, her first race. They were aiming for around 46 minutes; Lorna’s chip time was 46:01 I think, pretty impressive pacing. They both looked as though they enjoyed the run as they flew over the finish line. It was cool to be there to cheer them in. 

 Another great Run Through medal added to the collection

Overall it was a great first race in 2016. Next up is the South trailscape marathon on Saturday; I’m looking forward to hitting the trails and racing with the Advent Running trail team again. I hope everyone had a good weekend whether you were racing or training.

See a lot of you soon

Times in mind

Due to the fact I wasn’t running much the second half of last year I have found it hard to put goal times on the races I have coming up. I have recently done a few races so now I have rough times in mind but it obviously depends on how many miles I can get in between now and the events and how the tapering etc goes.

Last Sunday I ran the Old Deer Park Richmond Half Marathon. I signed up to it quite late in the day so wasn’t really tapering for the race or planning to go for a certain time. Also being my first half in 2015 and first half since Royal Parks in October I didn’t really know what I was capable of over that distance. I did the Royal Parks Half in just over 1:27.

The few days leading up to the run I was in Bath catching up with family so I got in some great carb loading! This included fish and chips, a massive Calzone and a cream tea. Turns out that all of this is good fuel as the run went well and I finished in a time of 1:21:21. Not far off my PB of 1:20:37 that I got at Reading last year. I was happy with that however it was a strange feeling to look at the watch in the last couple of miles and know the PB was slipping away although I wasn’t necessarily aiming for one.

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Today I ran the Nice Work Mornington Chasers Regents Park 10k. I have done a few 10ks so far this year including the Regents Park 10k in February. I managed a time of 36:42 today and am happy with that knocking 15 seconds off the last time I did the course. Another reason I’m happy is because I ran 21 miles on Thursday at 7:30 min/mile and therefore would have been carrying those miles in the legs.

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This week I am going to try and get quite a few miles in so that I’m in good shape for the North London Half in two weeks time. I am unsure how undulating the North London Half course will be so not sure what time I will be capable of but I will give it my all and hopefully get as close to 1:20 as possible.

The week after that I have Reading Half. They have changed the course to make it even flatter I believe so I’m hoping I may have a good chance to go sub 1:20 there fingers crossed. Then it will be about getting a few miles in before Brighton Marathon. The time I currently have in mind for Brighton is 3:27. That’s because I would really like to beat the time I did Manchester in last year. I would obviously like to go even quicker than that but we’ll see.

I hope everyone’s running has gone well this weekend. I love this time of year when there are so many races. Yesterday I was on cheer duty at Hilly Fields parkrun which was great fun. I wish I had done Bath half today, the bling looks great and I’ve seen loads of people have achieved great times!

Steve
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Where I’ve been and what I have planned

I haven’t put out a blog since July but thought it would be good to recap the last 6 or so months and write down what I have lined up for this year.

Over the last 6+ months I haven’t been running a huge amount. I found myself making the excuse that I didn’t have enough time but as we all know it’s more about making time. I have realised that running is an important part of my life and something I need to keep up.

Although I hadn’t run much I still did a few races. This included the Run Through Hyde Park 10k that I did in 37:33 and the Royal Parks half marathon which was a great event. The course was awesome and having crowds all the way round was a great help especially as I wasn’t in the best shape. I finished it in 1:27:30 and was happy with that considering the lack of training.

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One of my personal highlights of the last 6 months was the trip to Rio that I won. How I won the place on the trip can be seen here:

https://m.youtube.com/watch?v=1bHaQ_B9ISs

The trip was amazing! We got to try a lot of different sports (most of them I was terrible at! Ha). We tried capoeira, volleyball, and rowing. We also got to play football against kids from the favelas and go for a run along the beach. Another highlight was the tour of the Maracana stadium and the derby between Fluminese and Flamengo. The atmosphere was electric.

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The trip up to Christ the redeemer was pretty special aswell!

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So far this year I have started stepping up my running again. It is going to take some time to get back to PB shape but I have made good progress. I have done a few 10k races and most recently did a parkrun. I did a 10k in Richmond park in 39:46. I also did the Run Through Brixton 10k and the Mornington Chasers Regents Park 10k doing the last race in 36:57. This is 58 seconds off PB so I’m not far off the level I was at this time last year. The parkrun I did was Southwark and I surprisingly finished 1st in a time of 18:06. This is 43 seconds off PB so again happy with that.

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I have a lot of races around the corner so I will be looking to up the miles and pace in the next few weeks. I am doing the following races:

Old deer park Half possibly
North London Half
Reading Half
Brighton Marathon
Run Hackney Half
Ruby Run Half possibly
Bupa 10k
Westminster Mile
Race to the Stones 100k
Great North Run
Bristol+Bath Marathon
Plus other 10ks and lots of parkruns when possible etc

I’m really looking forward to all of these events and seeing what I can achieve. I enjoy running fast and far so am glad I’m signed up to a variety of distances.

I have recently joined Strava so if you’re on there add me. You should find me if you search Steve Skinner.

I hope everyone’s running is going well leading up to what is a busy period in the road running calendar with all the big marathons coming up.

Hope to catch up with you all soon whether it be on a run, Twitter or Facebook etc.

Steve

The RunThrough Greenwich Park 10k

Hi, hope everyone had a wicked weekend. Before I get into the nitty gritty of the 10k that I did yesterday I want to give everyone that I have been interacting with on Twitter and Facebook, about running, a big shoutout. Thanks for helping keep me motivated and giving me tips etc. I’m sure some of you have seen my participation in the UKRunChat #fastesthouroftheweek on Twitter and I have been thoroughly enjoying chatting to you all about yours and my running. I love the UKRunChat community and really like the fact that athletes such as Jo Pavey and Shona Thomson have been involved recently and offered advice.

Ok, so as some of you will have already seen and heard I did the RunThrough Greenwich Park 10k yesterday. I was incredibly lucky to get a place in this race as I had left it a tad late, but thankfully I managed to get entry on the Saturday night, thanks Matt. I was incredibly keen to do this 10k as I had ran around Greenwich Park once before and knew it was “hilly”. Some of you are probably thinking thats a good reason to stay clear but since moving up from Devon I have had limited resources in terms of hills and actually enjoy running them for some reason, bizarre I know. Also I know that I need to run a few hills because i’m pretty sure Reading Half and the Manchester Marathon aren’t “London pancake flat” and that doing hills can only make you stronger and fitter (unless you push it too far and get injured of course!) Image

(I’m Ryan Giggs no.11 in this pic by the way!!)

So I rocked up to Greenwich park, I was pretty buzzing because I knew about the hills and the “slight” wind which would be a good challenge, more so than the Regents Park and Brixton 10ks that I have done previously. Taking this into account I knew my time would be slower and therefore I was really relaxed. I was thinking of it as more of a training run than giving it 100% and knackering myself out for the rest of the week or even getting injured. The course around Greenwich Park was really good, it was two laps which I liked, as after doing the first lap I could gauge what I could give it in the second lap. Liking hills and running a few beasts down in Devon definitely came in handy on this one! Another really good thing about this race was the 5k or 10k options, so if you were training for various races you could pick one accordingly and just do the one lap but maybe faster etc.

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(This hill was so long and boring I fell asleep running it!! And yes my cheeks do match my shirt! And yes I do need a haircut!)

This race was nowhere near as exciting as my 3rd place finish in the Brixton 10k where I enjoyed a good sprint finish with a guy called Alex, who finished 2nd in this race. This race I paced myself on feel, so not too push it too much up the hills and get anywhere near having a chance of picking up an injury. I enjoyed the challenge of the hills and wind and managed to come in 4th with a time of 38:19. I’m reasonably happy with that and glad I now know what Greenwich Park is like so I can go there for some training runs and I also look forward to doing more races there in the future. Image

(I ran so fast my number almost came off! ha and I am not quite as good at pinning my number on my shirt as Mother!! ha also note the time clocked is 0! seriously quick ey!!?? ha)

After I had finished Billy Rayner (Trump Street Sweatshop) appeared out of nowhere, he completed the testing course and finished 15th so well done on that quality result mate! You definitely need to sign up to a few more races and I look forward to our London Marathon Store vs Trump Street races we are going to be planning in the near future which will most definitely include Sean Hodgesosaurus (Trump Street) and Amy Hughes (London Marathon Store and London Marathon runner).

A few of you are probably thinking “does this guy Steve just run and not do anything else!?” Well you’re pretty close if you’re thinking this but I am currently trying to keep things balanced and mix things up by doing various things in London. Last week I may have lost a table tennis match to the mighty Oli Sly Radio. I would like to add it was close but I cant! However, the loss was made bareable by the epic burger and curly fries from Adventure Club in Clapham and also the fact that I was better at table tennis than Aurie (Trump Street, LMS, Stratford etc)

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(Note: I’m not wearing running clothes in this picture!)

Right this post has been a bit of a beast again, sorry for stealing your time. Now get those trainers on and go for another run so that when you get to race day you end up celebrating in style, queue  epic finish line photo!!

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See you around

Steve

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