It was 10.15 a.m. on a lock down morning. I’d made the family breakfast (porridge), done the family shop and answered my emails and messages from the night before.
It wasn’t that I didn’t have anything else to do. But with Run the World, school talks, The London Borough Challenge and even the Highgate (Virtual) Tennis Club all on hold, I needed something extra in my life. Preferably something that would involve a physical challenge.
So I’ve decided to try to run a personal best : 10 km in 45 minutes.
I know that’s not much of a challenge for a serious runner. But I’ve run literally hundreds of 10 kms over the last few years and I’ve never managed it. The closest I’ve ever come was in El Salvador when I benefited from a bit of altitude, a running track and some fast company and finished in 47’ 16”.
Truthfully, the idea of a sub 45 minute 10 km has become a bit of (secret) Holy Grail for me. Something I have to do at some stage in my life. The trouble is that I’ve put it off for years because I know it’s going to hurt. A lot.
And when, about three weeks ago, I started training for it, that’s exactly what happened. It hurt.
If it was so hard to run 2 or 3 km at sub 4’ 30” pace then how was I ever going to manage 10 kilometres at that pace?!? I really began to doubt myself and I could feel my mind searching for excuses to give up.
I realised I need some extra motivation so here’s the deal : If you pledge a donation to Cancer Research – or to a corona related charity or your local health service (e.g. the NHS in the UK) or just to your favourite charity – then I will pay that pledge if I don’t beat 45 minutes. Of course, if I do go under 45 minutes, then you have to honour the pledge! *
The 10 km run will take place on July 4th 2020, the date originally scheduled for the UK leg of Run the World. That gives me less than 3 months to get up to speed – and for you to make your pledges!
And I want to stress that this isn’t all about pledging. My life’s mission is to get people exercising so I’d love you to take part. Either by joining the run on July 4th or, even better, why not target your own PB?!?
The PB can be over any distance by running, cycling, wheel chairing or walking and can be done where you live or (lock down restrictions allowing) with us in North London.
I hope to see some of you on July 4th for the PB attempt and a celebratory / commiseratory drink afterwards. In the meantime, stay safe, and, if you can, keep exercising!
*Email / message me with your pledge – I’ll keep a record of it and then, once I’ve run on July 4th, we’ll see who has to pay it!