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What Do you Think About When Running?

I was asked this question and thought that it could be fun to relive yesterday's run.

Pre run lineup

Where should I start? I think I will be in the first half of the finishers. Maybe the first third? I don't know. Maybe I won't actually be able to finish, I haven't ran properly (competitively) in a long time. Don't be silly, of course you will finish, it is just a matter of what time. I don't want to be too far forward an have loads of people overtake me at the start. Maybe the second quarter of people is the right place.

Oh I remember this feeling (feeling the body heat of all the other runners). Now time to focus, deep breaths.

Am I too close to the front?

On hearing the countdown Ok let's go.

First 200m

And we're off. Aren't we? Come on!

Oh. I definitely started too far back. Ok, how can I get past. Look there is a space. Pushes through gap

And another one.

Wait; how many people are here? Aggh! Definitely started too far back. To the side. Go around and see if you can pass that way.

Runs to the right of the field

Wait; was that (work colleague)? Maybe. Don't worry. Just keep going.

Oh look there is (my wife).

She hasn't spotted me.


She looks right past me but on of the kids shouts "Hi Daddy"

Well at least someone spotted me. And the field is spreading out.

Oh good plenty of space to run now.

First Leg

Now to relax but keep up a good pace. Is this pace good? It feels fast. But the correct pace is fast. I think this is right. But can I keep it up till the end?

Just keep going. Follow him with the red shirt! Stick with him.

Hmm, there are lots of folk overtaking me now. Have I started too fast? No. Keep going.

This is hard, perhaps I should slow down a.... NO! KEEP GOING! STAY WITH THE GUY IN THE RED SHIRT.

Slowly the guy in the red shirt pulls away. Lady with French braids overtakes.

Right, keep with her. Longer strides. Focus on your technique. What are your arms doing.

Guy pushing pushchair with a small child in it overtakes.

Ok this is getting silly. Stick with him, you can do this.

Start to climb a long steady hill, guy with pushchair falls back. Girl with French braids pulls ahead

Right, push up the hill. Try to keep up.

Main Section

Suddenly starting to sweat So I have now warned up. Probably should have done more before the start of the run. Doesn't matter. Push on up the hill. Keep the legs going.

Was that the cross roads? Good, must be at the top of the hill. Right push on. Lengthen you stride and try to catch up with French braids again.

How has he managed to push that buggy up the hill so fast!

Guy with pushchair pulls comfortably ahead.

How far is this stretch? How long before we turn back? Doesn't matter. Just run. Keep going. Push on. Focus on your technique.

How far have we gone now? Where is the half way point of the event? At the end of this leg? No, the return journey has more North-South legs and you still have to get back to the front of the park.

The kiosk. The half way point is probably the kiosk.

You've gotten distracted! French braids is much further away now. You can't even see the guy with the pushchair! Come on. Just keep going. Keep the legs up. Lon efficient strides. No plodding, keep the pace up.

Sees people running the other direction through the trees.

Is that the other runners? Are we at the end of the path? Yes. Yes we are. Ok, round the corner and make use of the downhill.

That's it, long efficient strides. Keep the pace up. Where do we go? Just follow the others. Over the grass. Keep going, nearly caught up with the French braids.

No w we are on the flat, stick with them. Keep going.

Approaching play park where my kids are playing I wonder if the kids will see me? Na, they will be too busy planning to see me. Hears my son shouting"Hi Daddy" again Well done kid. Trying to wave without messing up my stride completely.

And now we get to the big hill. Ok, you know how to handle hills. Keep the legs going. Keep pushing, every step, drive through.

French braids is already 30m ahead. I pass the pushchair.

I really don't fancy pushing that up this hill. I shout well done.

Right keep pushing past this guy. I encourage him to keep going, stick with me.

I start to narrow the gap to the lady with French braids. The guy I passed falls further behind.

Come on. Deep breaths. Push hard. You can catch her.

As I approach and pass the lady with French braids, she shouts "well done", I respond "stick with me".

We both reach the top of the hill together.

Well done, now back to running on the flat or slight down hill. Keep the pace up. Don't let her get ahead this time stick with her.

That's it, she is still on your shoulder, I think she is about to overtake you again, keep the pace up. Focus on your arms. Keep them relaxed and moving smoothly. Keep you stride length long. Run efficiently.

Repeat previous paragraph two more times as we continue down the hill.

Final leg

Ok, back on the tarmac, now is the time. Pick up the pace. No point in saving energy now.

You can pass him. That's it, keep pushing. In fact you might manage to catch the guy in front of him.

Is French braids still just behind me? Yes! Come on, keep going, keep picking up the pace. Not far to go now. Just one more corner and we will see the finish.

Wow, I forgot about that straight. Doesn't matter. Keep going. She is still right behind you. As fast as you can now.

Right, aim as close to that corner as you can. Take a racing line into the finishing straight. Can I catch those guys up ahead?

No, they are over the line. Keep going, she is still right behind you. Come on!


And that is pretty much what I was thinking about for the 22 minutes of the run. There were a few more repeated bits, and points I got distracted, but that was the bulk of it.

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