Race Recap // London Winter Run 2016


For full disclosure purposes, I received a free entry to the London Winter Run in exchange for sharing a discount code for the race in a previous post.. I was not paid to write this post and all opinions are my own.

London Winter Run raises money for Cancer Research UK and this past Sunday, I, alongside 15000 runners took to the streets of London to run 10 KM. Since the start of this year, we've lost a few British icons to Cancer - David Bowie, Alan Rickman and sadly Terry Wogan's death was announced on the day that we were actually running.

So, whilst everyone was excited about taking part in the race, it was a also such a massive and important reminder of why this race was taking place.

I'd been looking forward to this race for quite a while after participating last year. The atmosphere is always great, there's always tonnes of support and it's so inspiring and touching to see all the runners coming together for a good cause. So, let me tell you how it went..

The Morning Of..
Me and Phillip woke up at 4:45AM the morning of the race. We had a longer journey than expected to get to the start due to tube line closures. We parked at Stratford Westfield and headed to Nuffield Health Gym before the start of the race to drop of bags, have breakfast and do a warm-up before heading to the start line. I ended up having just a banana, some lucozade and my CurraNZ pre-race, I wasn't feeling hungry and was worried about needing the loo as it's caught me out a few times recently!

I got my face painted by the lovely ladies at Nuffield before a quick warm-up and then a short walk down to the start line in Trafalgar Square.
The starting waves for the race, in my opinion, we're still a little messy this year, as they were last year. It seemed that everyone headed to the start line and just got in line to start rather than waiting until it was their starting time. It would be better if there were pens for starting times so people could get in their section. Phillip was supposed to start at 9:30AM and he couldn't get anywhere near the start to go in the first wave and ended up going in the second wave.

The Race
I started at 09:39 - I ended up in an earlier wave due to the messy start line. My first mile was a little rough, my legs were heavy but it just took some easing into running. I completed my 1st mile in 09:59.

The heaviness in my legs disappeared around mile 2, it felt easier to run and I'd settled into a nice pace - My 2nd mile was 09:46 - I wasn't expecting to beat my PB from West Run London as I hadn't done enough speed training to warrant one, but I wanted to at least get as close to my West Run time as possible and that meant staying around the 10 min mark.

Just before 3 miles was a drinks station - but I was totally oblivious to it and missed it completely! I wasn't feeling like I needed a drink so I wasn't majorly fussed. I completed mile 3 in 10:06.

I did take some Jelly Beans at this point and almost choked on them as I ran.. Phillip opened the packet and gave them to me before the start, I was meant to take a handful for my pocket and bin the rest and I forgot - only to remember as I started running and then had to put up with them bouncing about in my pocket - apologies if I annoyed anyone with my bouncing Jelly Beans! xD

The course itself was different to last year. This year, we didn't run alongside The Thames and instead, it was a lot of streets but there was still plenty to see along the route such as Nelsons Column, Somerset House, St Paul's Cathedral, London Wall and Bank of England.
There was quite a lot of overlap on the course where you could see the faster runners or the runners from a later wave. If I remember correctly, we were running near St Paul's Cathedral(one of the only landmarks I seemed to pay attention to) at the 4 mile mark - it was absolutely stunning! I completed mile 4 in 10:05.

The last two miles were kind of a blur, I don't remember what happened during them or what I saw, which is pretty typical of me for a race. I was feeling particularly good throughout the whole race, wasn't really flagging or feeling tired at any point and my legs weren't feeling too tired either, so I was happy about that.

I finished miles 5 and 6 in 10:13 and 9:51 - I did end up speeding up for the last mile as I knew we were getting quite close to finishing and took the opportunity since I was feeling quite good. I had no idea what my time was for the race until after I crossed the finish line.

I wasn't paying too much attention to pace or time during the race and just wanted to run and enjoy it. I was quite surprised to see that my watch reported 1:00:51 as my finishing time, which was a 15 second PB from my West Run 10k time, so I was extremely happy to have beaten my time. This ended up being a 22 second PB once I got my official time for the race, so even better!

Obviously, a race recap isn't complete without a bit of race bling.. so here it is!
Overall Thoughts
Overall, the race was fantastic, it was for a great cause and I had a blast whilst getting a PB! The race, as it was last year was well organised, my only negative was the start but that wasn't a massive problem, just more of an annoyance.

The support was in abundance! A massive thank you to all the volunteers that braved the cold and the rain to cheer everyone on, you were fabulous and you looked great! :D
All in all, a great race to keep you motivated to run during the winter months. If you're interested in taking part in the Winter Run next year(they currently have 3 locations!), then you can click the banner below to register your interest for the race next year! :)
Question: Have you taken part in the Winter Run before or any themed run? Whats your favourite?

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  1. This sounds like a fun race! I've never done it myself, the only 10k I've done is Bushy Park - far more low key :D Well done on the time, sounds like you finished really strong which is awesome!

  2. Congrats Laura - Lovely PB :) & I've never taken part in the Winter Run before but I do find the idea tempting...the only themed run I've taken part in was 'colour run' and that was a blast! :) xx

  3. Well done! And what a fantastic time too, although I bet you're cursing those 51 seconds as you were so close to a sub 60! I'm doing the Manchester one at the end of the month (against the doctors orders oops) with a dodgy knee so I'm looking to have fun which it looks like I will have! Thanks for your recap it's made me look forward to the Manchester face even more!

  4. @Lucy Robinson It definitely was! :) I'm usually feeling rather crap at the end of a race, so I'm quite suprised that I was still feeling good enough to push the pace at the end!

  5. @Katie G Thanks you! I was surprised at getting a PB since I hadn't done too much training since Christmas. a little bummed I didn't get sub 60 but I will get it eventually! I've never done the colour run but it sounds like so much fun, so I may just have to put it on my list as a fun run to do this year! :)

  6. @Hayley Gradwell Thanks! I was definitely cursing the 51 seconds! but at the same time, I was rather suprised I'd even got a PB in the first place! I'll get it eventually! :)

    You'll really enjoy it! The support from the volunteers in the costumes is fab too! They're so much fun! Take it easy with the knee and just enjoy it! :)

  7. Woohoo for getting a new PB! Great job! I would love to do this race one day - it looks really good fun (and I won't lie - the face paint is so pretty, and the medal looks fab!).


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