Chase the Moon 10k, November 2019 – David Hayden

So last night (13th Nov) I did the ‘Chase the Moon 10k” at the Olympic Park in East London – one of the perks of staying away a lot I can check out local runs and races. Runthrough are the organisers – I did a “chase the sun” about 18 months ago which was at the same place. Anyway last night was my first attempt at seeing what I could do after what feels like a long absence – and have I got a 10k in me that can beat my time from the Caistor Sting in the Tail 10 K on July 7th this year, where Harry my ex hernia made himself known – I have cried with emotion at finishing a run before – but never ever with pain – don’t want to go back there!

I also wanted to do a run without any ‘pressure’ – don’t get me wrong I love being a Harrier – but the fact I could run where nobody knows me and there is no knowledge of my previous form really appealed – and could I do a time that would be acceptable to me at the up coming Donny 10k…. (however that didn’t quite go to plan- bumped into someone who recognised the top – shouted “Donny boy” and then told me he ran with Nicola Wilkinson on a weekend – didn’t catch the guy’s name as I was at the time coming out of the loo as he was going in…

The race was a joint 10k and 5k – about 500 runners in each race – both start at the same time – four laps around West Hams stadium and the Acelor Mittle tower and across some of the canals – the evening started off cold and the moon came out before the start of the run spot on cue. The route was a flat course – ideal for a pb – way off that thought! The start was staggered in terms of anticipated finish times – I had told myself under an hour – I was over an hour at Caistor – my pb last year at Donny was 46 something – knew that was unachievable in my current state – but beating Caistor was a start on my recovery. However – I couldn’t resist – went in on the under 55mins – already my plan coming undone!!

The first two laps were great – felt so good to be running at a fairly decent pace – although way off anything I was doing this time last year – 27 mins for the 5k – impressed with that thank you – then the rain started on the third lap – and towards the end – was joined by a fellow runner keeping my pace – and slowly got suckered in to keeping in step – she sped up – so did I – I absolutely loved the last lap – really felt good and strong – she pipped me at the last 50 meters – but I didn’t care – it was worth it – the clock said 51m 48 – so pleased with that – in fact ridiculously pleased with it… we shook hands thanked each other and then went off to get the medal water and other goodies including a big bag of bath salts! Pity the hotel room had a shower and not a bath – could have used them!!

The rain stopped as I headed back to the tube and the hotel I am staying at in Wimbledon – I felt really good – the legs ached – and that felt good to know they had been used – the niggles I am still feeling post operation behaved and I am having a bit of trouble with my left big toe – that behaved too! I check the results – chip time 50 min 28 seconds – whoop whoooooo and 199th out of 442 finishers and – get this 3rd – THIRD in my age category – having that!!!

I have missed not going to the club – really missed it – work and fitness keeping me away – but looking forward to Donny 10k and Edwinstowe meal – and finding ten pictures that Amanda Lane has challenged me to – not had the right state of mind to respond to the challenge – but I will have another think about that after last night…..

If ever you are in London – check out the RunThrough series of events – they are a good atmosphere and some brilliant places!