Bag of Nerves

Looking for some words of support. I have my first 10k tomorrow at 40 years old and I'm big and slow. Although I'd lived a very different lifestyle compared to the keep fit brigade for most of my life, enjoying most vices for many years, my training plan was going ok and I'd got to the stage of managing to plod about 7.5k three weeks ago before being struck down with a truly horrible chest infection.

I've since mainly recovered but only in time for a 5k jog on Tuesday (35 minutes including 2 x coughing fits and 1 x vomit - nice!) and 5k on Thursday morning (33 minutes no coughing fits, felt great afterwards).

Virtually everyone I know knows I'm doing this run (St. Helens 10k) and I've raised over £400 for charity as I originally wanted to put myself in a position to not be able to back out. Plenty of mates ribbed me from the start - 'you'll never do it' etc. I was feeling fine about it before I got ill but now all my confidence has gone and I'm worried I'll fail or make a fool of myself in some way - wish I'd kept my mouth shut in the first place. If I can plod 5-6k now, will I make it? Please help!

Big L.


  • Don't back out, prove to your self and others that you can do it, don't worry about pace or time just go for it, if you have to walk a bit then so be it no one will laugh or think any less of you and if thay do just tell your self "i've achieved what i wanted" which is to raise money for charity and what other goal you may have, just take it in your own stride and enjoy the race. oh and there's is no such thing as "you never do it" it is "they never do it" the people who said that you wont do it.

  • go for it, take it slowly and walk if you need to. Every 10k I have done there have been people walking at times. As you were ok on Thursday's 5k you are probably over your virus, but just take it steady. The beauty of your first ever race is that you have no time to beat, just aim to complete it and you have an instant personal best time and will feel amazing afterwards at what you have achieved.

    good luck, and update this afterwards with how you got on!

  • Big L you'll be fine image

    Just remember not to get caught up in the excitement and start off too quickly, take it at a steady pace.

    You'll also be amazed at how race day adrenalin gives you more energy than you thought you'd got!!

    Enjoy it and let us know how you get on.

  • Hi Big L,

    I completed my first 10k yesterday.  I was all for backing out midweek as my training schedule has been a disaster with work currently dominating my life!  Can count on one hand the number of times over the last 4 weeks I have ran so had major doubts I would be able to finish.

    You can do it and you will feel a huge surge in confidence crossing the finish line.  I have now caught the race bug and can't wait to take part in my next one.

    Very best of luck image

  • kaffeegkaffeeg ✭✭✭
    you'll be BRILL! you've trained, you're determined, you'll be nervous but thats good. just picture yourself coming into that finish line and how great you will feel. and how fantastic it will be to tell your friends you did it, and not only that, but you did it really well.

    agree with everyone else - don't start off too fast. start slower than you want to. keep it slow the first couple of miles then start to build it up.

    good luck!

  • Big L, you've come a long way by the sound of things.  Your illness was bad luck, but you can put it behind you now.  There's just you and your race, which although it seems public, is really a private thing in some ways - just you and your mind and body against the distance. 

    This is your first 10K and you've got nothing to prove to anyone.  Start out at a pace you can manage and if you need to, just slow down into a walk.  You can do that as many times as you need to, but it'll probably fly by faster than you expect.

    GOOD LUCK! image

  • Thanks everyone for your support, advice and encouragement. I've calmed down a little now, been to work for a few hours and now just going out for a nice stroll in the sunshine with Mick and Keef for company (Stones on ipod) - btw what's the form for wearing headphones at a race please?

    Rednelly you have my sympathies, my job is a nightmare too at present, which hasn't helped so its great to hear you succeeded.

    Now fully intending to visit the pub wearing my medal tomorrow afternoon! Will let you know how I get on.

    Big L

  • OMG you said the headphones word image image

    Nothing is guaranteed to polarise views more on this forum than the use of headphones. Some love them some hate them.

    Check what the race rules say. The worry is that you won't hear any instructions from marshalls or be aware of any other runners approaching and there may be a collision.

    In my opinion, run without them in a race and soak up the race atmosphere image

    You will now find approximately 500 people will join this thread to give you their opinion!

  • kaffeegkaffeeg ✭✭✭

    all i say about headphones is: if you have your music on really loud and crappy headphones that leak the sound - just think about the runners who are around you and how it affects them!!!!  (I.e. i ARRGGGHHHHHH headphones on races!)  When I hear people's music, as a musician, i always always have to run to the beat - i can't stop myself, and the result is a messed up pacing and also going at the same pace as the bloody person with the music - so I can't get away from it.  Arrrgggghhhhhh.

    Anyway - good luck (without the headphones!)

  • I like the sound of 'enjoying most vices for many years' - you must have been busy image . You'll be fine. As everyone's said, don't go off too quick, keep it steady, enjoy the race.
  • Best of luck Big L, you'll have the time of your life, although it won't feel like it until afterwards!  image

    One of my mantras with regard to racing is to enjoy the first race at any distance.  Get yourself round but most of all enjoy the experience, its your first time, make sure you take in all the cheers, shouts, atmosphre and enjoyment.  Once you've finished you'll have a time to beat at your next race at that distance, and thats when you can reallystart to enjoy pushing yourself hard with a time to chase down. 

    Enjoy, and let us all know how you get on!

  • You will be fine, enjoy the day it will be a great experience.

    In my opinion leave the headphones at home for races but as stated above, so people swear by them (if permitted by race)

    Best of luck and be sure to let us know how it goes.

  • I'm dying to know how it went, I read through this thread fully expecting to find out at the end.

    I have my first 10k next Sunday so was hoping for some fab inspiration!
  • Yes, come on Big L, how did it go? image
  • He/she is in the pub with a medal! Way to busy soaking up the celebrations to come on here image
  • Congratulations, I mean, not celebrations image
  • Well - I did it!

    It was very hard, I was freaking out by the start and really panicking which was a horrible way to start as I was all over the place and never really calmed down. The main problem was it was a lot more hilly than I expected. I knew there was one big hill at 3k but then followed a 2k stage in a park up and down up and down – that killed me, coughing guts up and nearly sick etc. – apparently I found out afterwards, ‘it’s a hard course’!

    Had to walk lots of that bit – anyhow, made it – 1hr 20 mins, had the stadium to myself (it finished with a 'lap of honor' around the Saints RLFC new stadium) when I finished (although I wasn’t last I was nearly the last who wasn’t just walking), the announcer made the crowd cheer (the shame!) so I went over the line backwards arms up crowd in the North Stand cheering.


    Will be better next time as the pies etc. are now gone for good.


    My mate did a great 52 mins, but he’s younger and nearly 4 stone lighter than me so its not rocket science – just science! Oh, and I didn't use headphones but loads of others did and I wish I had - sorry but think I will if allowed in future.

    Spent the afternoon in the pub wearing medal which was a nice way to have my last drink for a while - packing that in now as I prepare for another 10k in May (would be looking for a much better time), and then maybe a 10 miler in Llandudno in June - 14 weeks away and apparently a flat course, I just know that I can do it without making a fool of myself if I diet, train, and keep to it.

    Anyhow, thanks for all the support - I'll keep you updated. btw I'm a he not a she!


  • Very well done BL, not a bad time for a first timer, especially if it was a tough one!  My first 10k was over the hour (I was just over a chest infection and had a BMI of around 38 at the time), over time I got that 10K down to around 44 minutes and was driving it down further but got injured.  Now that you've got your first one by with you a) know you can do it, b) know you can do it on a tough course (!) and c) have a time to chase in future races. 

    And yes, the post race beer is definitely nectar of the gods. 

  • Congratulations!  You have set a benchmark for yourself now!


  • well done!! A stadium finish sounds great - that is certainly not embarassing. If you had headphones on you wouldn't have heard the cheer....
  • Well done ..wasn't a long time ago I did my first 10k,quite fancy finishing in a stadum (dreams of Olympic glory) sign me up next year...image
  • 2 mile dead slow jog and a walk for a mile this morning to stretch the old pins - christ they were sore yesterday. After all the stress of it all has now passed I feel great about it. Full steam ahead for L'pool 10k in May, correct diet and training plan will be being observed religiously and I'm feeling really confident that I'll improve.

  • Well done BL,

    Sounds like you had a great day. Keep up the good work and watch those times tumble. image

  • Nice one, BL. Congratulationsimage
  • Congratulations BL

    I have really enjoyed reading this,

    I only came to running at 40 due to stress and looking for a way to cope and remember my first 10k so well.

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