Today was a hot one. High twenties. Very little breeze.

Perfect conditions to go for a 10km run through central London!

As anyone following this blog, my Twitter feed, or even my recent posts on Write Anything will know, I’ve been training for a series of running challenges over the next year: to run several 5k races (at least one of which must be under 20 minutes), several 10k races (at least one of which must be under 50 minutes), a half-marathon and a full marathon. And all of the above to be run wearing my minimalist running shoes.

Today was the first of those challenges: the BUPA London 10,000. I ran on behalf of Mind, England’s leading mental health charity. Those who know me know that mental health is a cause I feel very strongly about. If you haven’t sponsored me yet… my sponsorship page is open for another month after the race, so plenty of time to pledge some money. Go do it now. I’ll wait. Seriously.

My official time for the race was 01:10:11. That’s clearly not under 50 minutes, so still a lot of work to do, but that’s only the first of many races to come. I’m still getting used to the new running style that the Vibrams require, the weather was uncomfortably hot (I saw several people collapsed and receiving medical attention) and if Mo Farah finishes 1:20 off his usual time, I think I can be excused!

I made it though. My pace was pretty consistent across the race, I didn’t stop running over the whole 10k, and I feel pretty damn good.

I’ve had a lot of support from many different people over the past few weeks, but my biggest support has been my wife Julia, who has been with me every step of the way: encouraging me to get out running when I didn’t feel like it; mixing me isotonic drinks when I’ve been close to collapse; massaging tired muscles and sore feet; and today getting me to the race on time, and navigating me home when my legs were getting stiff and sore. And also taking the photos you see in the post today! Thanks sweetie!

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One thought on “Winner!”

  1. That is most excellent news Paul. It’s a joy to see you running and enjoying it again (and achieving those goals you’ve set!)

    Was thinking of you as I lay soaking in a salt bath last night.

    And a truly worthy charity to be raising money for. In this day and age I’m still astounded at the prejudice people with mental health issues are forced to navigate and deal with.

    What’s the next big run planned?

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