The plan for today was to plod a nice easy parkrun to pace out the weekend but when Claire, who I ran Hale 5 with, mentioned Halewood 5k I couldn’t resist. We’re the same speed and are going for pretty much the same PB’s so she’s great to run with because she forces me to push myself more. The 5k is hosted by Knowsley Harriers on the first Saturday of every month. It’s completely free, organisation is really good and there’s even toilets, somewhere to put your bag and a warm place to wait for the start. You need to register when you get there, your can’t register before, but it’s pretty quick and then you get given a laminated race number to use and give back at the end, they even have safety pins. The race starts at 10 am right next to the club house in Halewood which is only a five minute walk from the train station. The race is actually fully licensed and the results even go on Run Britain, not bad for… well… nothing.
The good stuff doesn’t stop their either. The course is completely flat. It’s pretty much an out and back along a tarmac path. You run out for 1.6 miles after a little detour at the beginning and then run back. The route goes through a park and by some fields so is quite pretty and countrysidey (I made up a new word) but you never leave the tarmac so you have the benefits of a pretty trail run without having to deal with running on uneven ground. Obviously the path is still open to the public but there was only a few walkers and one bike so it wasn’t an issue at all. With around 70 runners it doesn’t matter if you’re not near the start because everyone crosses the line pretty quickly and you get to see the faster runners coming back towards you and encourage each other which is nice. I got to cheer on Martin from my club who was running really well after a massive PB at Manchester Marathon.
Me and Claire started a little too fast at 7:10/mm but then we managed to slow down a bit to a nice steady pace. We slowed down a bit in the second mile but not by much and were doing pretty well by the time we reached the turn around point. In the last mile I started to lose Claire a little bit I couldn’t slow down so I just kept trying to shout at her over my shoulder occasionally to make sure she was still there. I felt bad for leaving her but if I’d tried to slow down I would have stopped. This has happened a few times now where I just have to keep going. I managed to get down to 6:23/mm in my final sprint, which I’m pretty impressed with, and my official time was 25:58. It’s four seconds slower than my PB (which is a bit annoying, being so close) but Claire did really well finishing in 26:31 and we’ll both be back next month for another crack at it.
I have to say that I really love Halewood 5k. The course is perfect for working on your pace and running style because it’s so flat with like literally three turns. All of the volunteers involved are amazing and it’s all completely free which is just incredible really. We even got a mini flapjack at the end and results were posted within a few hours. I would really recommend going and giving it a try. If you want more information then please click here.
Right, after today I’m hoping I’ll survive tomorrow. One race down, two to go.