On a late July evening, myself and some of my fellow colleagues (Paul Williams, Nichola Diment, and Faith Roberts) decided to take up the challenge of doing ‘Chase the Sun’, a 5km run around Salford Quays and MediaCityUK. However, Nichola decided to go one further and take up the option of doing the 10km!
Out of all of us, I think I was the least prepared, but I like to push myself out of my comfort zone and so took up the challenge, determined to prove I could do this!
The run up to the race was very nerve wracking and as more people turned up, the excitement started to kick in. Myself, Paul and Nichola went for a light jog together for a warm up beforehand and discussed techniques to get us through the race as well as a general motivation chat.
Then came the time to start getting into position, ready to race. They started to get everyone together in time order and I opted to aim for 35 minutes running time, as I wasn’t confident I could keep up the pace.
After everyone was ready they started counting down and that was it - we were away! The start was really good, everyone going at a nice slow pace with some going a bit further ahead and quicker.
For me, the first lap was the hardest as I was spending this time trying to find the right pace and ended up going too quickly at the start. I did have to fast walk twice to get my breath back, but once that first lap was out of the way I was off.
At times, I did feel disheartened when I saw people pass me and at one point I nearly gave up, but I decided to keep pushing and pushing. I kept a rhythm to get me to the finish line and focused on my breathing, which really helped. I was surprised at how far I had actually pushed myself.
When I came to the end of the second lap to go and claim my medal I was ecstatic! Nothing can compare to the feeling I felt when I eventually crossed the finish line. It was a mix of emotions and I was so proud of myself. In the end I actually beat the aim of 35 minutes and crossed the line in 33 minutes! Despite the difficulty of the race for me and the down moments, I would definitely do this again.
It was such a lovely surprise to have my colleagues James McIntosh and Kay Vose there to support us. Without them cheering us on I don’t think I would have found it as easy to keep going. It just goes to show having support can really take you further!