London Olympic Park 5 Mile Run
The London Olympic Stadium
Sign Up Day
Well, it all started at work, my son, who is at university studying for a maths degree works at the same place as I do, he is office admin. We work in a small and very friendly construction company, I do the accounts and we all get on extremely well. My son, Thomas or Tom, put himself down to run the Derby 10k with Jordan, who is one of the directors, and John, who runs the painting and decorating side of things, all good..They did their run and we went along to cheer them on, they did very well, all good again.
Then Jordan was out somewhere all day and said to me, there is a 5 mile run around the Olympic park, but it is a ballot and I am out all day, would you put my name down, and see if Tom wants to do it too. Well Thomas was very interested and at 9.30am sharp I sat at my computer and Thomas sat at his and we waited for the ballet to open. It opened, I logged on, it crashed! we tried again. I shouted to Tom, who was in a different office, but in shouting proximity, ARE YOU ON. NO came the reply it has gone down. Well, I didn't get much work done that day as every half hour or so I logged on and tried again, just a message saying website too busy! Well, I knew that! By 3pm that afternoon Jordan came back, and I was then in the unenviable position to tell my Director that I had not been able to sign him up and explained what had happened and the that website had crashed due to too many people wanting to sign up for it.
Luckily for me, he said, oh well never mind, but keep trying. I did..Then the other Director, Stephen came in and so did John. At about 3.30pm I tried in vain once again, trying all day and thought it would be the same, but no..ON..I shouted "I'm IN" Luckily everyone knew what I was going on about!
So Jordan rushed in and filled in his application, at the same time in the other office, Thomas was busy filling in his application, that was until he got to the bit where you had to pay, then my purse had to make a appearance (as usual) and my card number and all my details got shouted across the office, (this does happen quite often) fortunately, there was not a open window and a passing thief with a pen a paper jotting down my details for later use.
Jordan and Thomas were in. Stephen said, "what is all this about?" he was told in very excited tones from me, Jordan and Thomas. Well how cool is this, you get to run around the Olympic park, its only 5 miles. I'm doing that, he said, I will text Sarah (girlfriend) to see if she wants to too. (neither RUN).. Sarah said yes..Stephen filled in his application, followed by filling in for Sarah too. John, then was shouted and told even more excitedly about this once in a lifetime run. Who also ran to his computer and filled in his application. Everyone was looking at me, come on, you do it. NO, I said, I haven't ran since school, go on, you can walk it, said Stephen. I, overcome with the excitement of actually getting the website to load up and Jordan was in, said, hay, why not!! it's ONLY 5 miles, got out my purse again and off I went.
It was only when I got home and told my husband what I had signed up to the reality started to sink in, when with friends and all gun ho! all ok, but in the cold light of at home and "What!" "you don't run" you actually realize, that you don't run, and it is 5 MILES..5 MILES!
Well it is May and I have until July, 21st of July to be precise.
I am not completely unfit, but running is not my thing. So I thought I would see how far I could go to start with. I have a map my walk app on my phone which I use when I walk our dog to see how far we have been. This I thought would be perfect, as it does runs too. so mapped my run, ran, walked, ran a bit, walked up any slope or hill, and as we live in Derbyshire and it is quite hilly there are quite a few hills, I also realised that there was no run where I lived that was flat or even better downhill all the way, there was always an uphill first!
The first run I did was almost 2 miles, and I did it in 17 minutes, but I felt okay, and actually enjoyed it.
But, my running kit was a pair of old baggy jogging bottoms with a bit of a bleach stain, and a sports top which was okay, but not very streamlined, I did however have some running shoes that were fairly new and okay. so I decided on a spot of shopping, I got myself some running 3/4 trousers, running vest, and running long sleeved top, well I now looked the part if nothing else.
I then carried on running twice in the week and Saturday and Sunday mornings going a bit further and I am actually enjoying doing it, I am taking my time, not really pushing myself but by the beginning, of June I can run (well slowly) up hills and I am up to just over 3 miles. I know you are now laughing, but I am quite happy with my progress.
Now my son on the other hand is a different matter, he can run, he can do it, and fast too. But, he is not training, the day he put his name down he has not ran since. I am now secretly hoping I beat him. There are two things in my favour
- I have been training steadily
- He hates the heat, and we are running in July!
I have to admit that each run I go on and he doesn't I do think, well Tom, you might be beaten by your Mum, which I have to confess he would never live down, at home or at work!
1. I keep getting stitch at about the one mile mark, I have researched this and it seems it could be a number of things, I stop it by breathing it out, breathing down into my stomach, which is a yoga technique, this technique does seem to work, and I do manage to breath through it
2. Thirsty, or not actually thirsty but a dry mouth, I again research this and found that hydration is the most important thing in running, so the day I am to run, if it is in the evening after work, I try to drink more water, and now this just might be a coincidence, but if I clean my teeth before I go out, I don't get a dry mouth either?
3. Not pushing myself enough, although I want to take it easy I am not sure that I am letting myself get off lightly. But then again, my son is doing nothing so, maybe I am doing okay
4. Pace, now this is quite hard, to get the correct pace, I started off going quite fast (for me) and then being worn out, walking, then going off again. I have since tried not to run so fast to start with, and to keep a steady pace so I can keep going, and not slowing or speeding up, which is energy sapping.
5. Ipod, now this is not actually a training issue, I don't listen to a lot of music, but find listening to music while running is the way forward. Trouble is, I don't have a lot of music on my ipod and I have found I keep listening to the same thing and getting a bit bored so might have to either invest or steal off other family members!
6. App. a running, walking app. they are great, they help you keep track of how well you are doing, how far you are running, how fast, and some tell you where you slow and where you speed up, which where I live is where the hills are.
7. Actually training when you don't feel like it or it is raining, which I live in England, so happens quite a lot. I don't really mind running in the rain, if it is not windy or freezing, and I am now quite enjoying running and plan when I run and stick to it, if I have decided to go I make sure that I do.
8. Don't colour your hair and then go out running, you end up with your scalp sweating and hair colour leaching down your forehead, and you know nothing about it until you get home and look in the mirror..Then you realise why people we looking, it was not that you looked good!
9. Distance, once I was comfortably running 2 - 2.5 miles I then had to up my distance, which I thought would be easy, but it is longer than you think, and living were I do in Derbyshire the hills are getting longer and higher.
10. Heat, it is starting to get hot, we seem to be having the hottest July for a very long time. I think it is going to be hot on the day
Chip and T-shirt arrivedClick thumbnail to view full-size
Today is the DAY
Early start as we have to get down to London, I packed all the things that we needed the day before for our 5am start.
We arrived at the stadium at around 9am and met up with our group. The weather had been hot, humid with bright sunshine, but today it was overcast and a lot cooler, the conditions were perfect for running.
We were all ready for the day, one of our group had missed their train and were running late, but hopefully they would arrive on time.
We went to the start line and waited for John, our late comer, texts were being sent on his update, but Jordan, who was taking this far more seriously than me and everyone else in our group, said that he was not waiting but was going to get to the front of our wave of runners, Thomas was in another wave so he was not with us, there were three of us waiting for John, who never showed up, so we had to struggle in with the crowd at the back of our wave, it was very tight, everyone huddled together all waiting for the off.
Then our time to go, very slow start, mainly just walking to the start line with the other thousands of people, it took about 5 minutes to get to the start then we started, still slow, which I think was possibly a good thing for me as it made me get a good pace, which I did, I started with Stephen and Sarah we ran together for the first mile, then I seemed to lose them, I was not sure if they had gone ahead or I had, so I carried on at my pace and was very pleased with myself, all the running up hills in Derbyshire made running round a nice flat area easy. At the 3 mile mark, you see the others runners that are in front loop back down at their 4 mile mark, I was seeing if I could see anyone and saw Jordan, he was doing really well and only had a mile to do, then I came to the part were I started to loop back and coming up on the other side was Thomas, he had started 8 minutes after me so he had really caught up well, he waved and shouted "Mum" then a few minutes later caught up with me and said " where is everyone?" I said that I knew by then Jordan would be finished but did not know were Stephen and Sarah were, but I did think they were behind, and John had not turned up when we got in our wave at the start, brilliant he said I am not last and ran off, leaving me to be maybe last!
Running into the Olympic Stadium
This was great, it was an amazing feeling to know that last year all of the worlds best athletes had been on this track, and now I was here, the crowds were all cheering everyone on and it was a truly incredible feeling. The last 100m I ran faster to the finish, I have to admit I did not sprint, but a fast run.
We went to the Olympic's last year and loved every minute of it, and now here I was on the very track that Mo Farah and Bolt have ran on. How cool was that! I had a massive smile on my face and did my best running style as everyone including my husband were watching.
I found out later when I met up with everyone, that no one had seen me! I did put it down to I had zipped past them at speed, but I don't really think that was the reason, apparently everyone looked the same..
Olympic Stadium Run
The Day and the Results
Well, Thomas did do better than me, even though he only went out running once before the run, luckily for him the weather was cool so he did not have heat exhaustion, he did, have youth on his side, only been 19 and me 47 but I was very pleased with my time.
I have to say, I found it quite easy, running around Derbyshire is extremely good training for running a flat course, I could have gone on, well that is what I am now telling myself.
Our Times and Positions
15000 people ran in this run
Time - 51.02
Position - 7670th
Position in age group - 800
Position in gender group - 2521
Time - 45.07
Position - 4665
Position in age group - 2277
Position in gender group - 3641
Now although he did run faster, I think in the age group and gender group categories, I did better than him, but I have not pointed that out...Yet!
Our whole group did well, Jordan did the best time in 39.25, but then he took it more seriously and wanted to do a good time, I just wanted to get round.
Then John, who did manage to turn up and run, his time was 42.28
Stephen and Sarah did the same time of 56.54
So on the whole we all did extremely well.
On the day out of everyone the fastest time was 25.40 and the slowest was 2 hours.
The Actual Run
The actual run was a bit of a disappointment, it says run 5 miles around the Olympic Park, ending in the stadium, which you do and it is great.
Now I thought, and correct me if you disagree, a park was a nice green area, with trees, grass and flowers, which last year when we went there were pretty park areas with grass to sit on and walk around. So naturally I though, this is what I would be running around.
But, they are re-vamping the whole area, and you are essentially running around a building site, ending up in the stadium. They had the odd steel band playing and a water station, but you are running on hard dusty ground, sand or dead dry grass. Not at all what I had expected. Having said that I would have not have missed it for the world. A great day.
Even on the map they give you of the route it is green, not anymore it is not!
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This is the run I will be doing
Olympic Stadium, London
Olympic Park, London, UK
© 2013 Lavender Jade