Easter Sunday, and what better way to celebrate the impending consumption of chocolate rabbits than with a brisk 10k?
The North Tyneside 10k is a bit of a special event for me – it’s the first ‘proper’ race I ever ran, I work in North Tyneside and I used to live in Whitley Bay, right by the sea front where the race goes.
Now, however, I live a bit further way, so a trip in the car to get there. It was cloudy up Blaydon way, so I took a few tops in the hope the right combination would jump out at me once I arrived.
When I got there, the weather was this:
Very nice, so no need of the waterproof then. I got my Metro ticket, checked there was a train coming, then relawed in the sun, pretty sure I’d make it to the start on time.
There’s no real justification for such a huge photo of my ticket, but there may be some collectors of northern light railway memorabilia, so who am I to deny you a small pleasure?
Anyway, arrived at the start, had the obligatory pre-race wee (they won’t start the race if you haven’t been) and joined the back of the runners.
The horn went and we were off! Along the street, right turn and down Borough Road, the only real descent in the race, and people tend to go really slowly down it. It may be a bit odd to see a grown man windmilling past with his arms out making aeroplane noises (it’s a road race, so aeroplane is the order of the day, if it was a trail race we’d be talking The Sound of Music) but I couldn’t say, I’ve never seen anyone else do it…
Through the Fish Quay and the sun was lovely, it’s great to have a warm run, and along the banks of the mighty Tyne. At the mouth of the river you head up past the priory on the only serious hill of the run, but it’s a good ‘un. Lots of people walk the hill, sometimes the path snarls up, but a bit of patience wins the day and a gap opens up.
At the top it’s three miles of beautiful coastal running along the sea front, past the Sea Life Centre, along the top of Tynemouth Longsands, past the cafes at Cullercoats and through Whitley Bay past the Spanish City. Onto the Links at last and the final mile to the lighthouse and we’re done. Fifty two minutes, forty-five seconds, apparently, but it felt like a good run, the core training is definitely making an impact.
Next up is the Kielder Dark Skies Marathon with the Teail Outlaws in a couple of weeks.