My first event of the year was the Capital Runners Richmond Park 10km. I signed up to this quite last minute as I've been off running due to shin splints and got the green light from my physio just a week ago for running. I did park run last week, a 2 other short runs in the week and though a 10km was the next step.
Given my current life of working in the midlands and living in London, I've found it quite tough finding running routes in the midlands for my long runs, so am planning to use low key organised races as long runs as much as possible.
I've been meaning to do a Capital Runners event for a while and have been desperate to run in the beautiful Richmond Park. They have a series of 6 - 8 races a year, chip timed with a medal and are a really friendly bunch. The start time is also a friendly 10am on a sunday, so not too bad.
About 300 of us gathered on a glorious but cold day in the Park, and did 2 x 5km laps of the Park on path and trail. The course was "undulating" as they described it, but more hilly that other events I'd done in the past. My main aim was to complete the race without twinging or pain in my shins. I took it slow and really concentrated on form and going slow for the first lap, then let myself enjoy the second lap, taking in the beautiful views and the deer at the final kilometer.
I also listened to a Marathon Talk podcast interviewing Alexandra Heminsley who wrote Running like a Girl which was amazing! Especially as she was talking about running for yourself and at your own pace and that being ok (just as the fastest runners finished the course when I was starting lap 2!).
All round a great run with a slow time of 1:11 but happy that my injuries seemed to have recovered. There are lots more capital runners events this year that you really should check out here! They are really well organised, friendly and really are for all abilities. Let me know if you fancy joining me for one!