I’ve completed the Tunbridge Wells Hospice in The Weald 10K three times, in 2012, 2013 and 2015 respectively.
In 2015 I stated that I wouldn’t take part again, saying: “Trust me, this will 100% be the last time.”
However four years have passed, and Hospice in The Weald have tweaked the format of their annual 10K, adding a 5K option. Mum has taken up running and enjoys completing 5Ks, so as this event it local to us, I thought it would be a great opportunity to try the revamped Hospice Run out together.
I signed up for the 10K and mum registered for the 5K (both £25 each), with our t-shirts being sent through the post a few days prior to the event.
So on Sunday 22nd September, I parked on a residential back-road in Tunbridge Wells and met mum at 8:45am, where we walked to the Lower Cricket Ground on the Common. There was a bustling atmosphere and stands clearly labelled for baggage (which we didn’t use) and number collection, which was organised in alphabetical order by surname. We picked up our running numbers (with embedded timing chip) easily without queuing, and enjoyed a fun, energetic warm-up.
The 10K started at 10am with the 5K following at 10:15, so I said goodbye to mum and wished her luck as us 10K runners were funnelled into the Start Line. An MC counted us down and then we were off – straight into a hill!
I’d eaten an Oat So Simple porridge Pot, Beanies coffee and apple juice, and felt good and ready to go. I was wearing USA Pro lycra shorts underneath Nike Dry-Fit shorts, Primark sports bra, bespoke event t-shirt, and black trainer socks with Nike Free Rn 5 trainers. A comfortable outfit at first, but I ended up getting too hot during the run and pulled the sleeves of the t-shirt up, wishing I’d worn a vest instead! It was unusually warm and muggy.
The 10K route is extremely hilly – very up and down – and passes by Southern Water sewage plant, so it’s not the best route. It’s definitely challenging! However there were two water stations on the course, and pockets of supporters throughout, including kids handing out sweets. I didn’t even think about using my Torq enery gel and powered through, enjoying the challenge and feeling good.
The finish line was crowded with supporters, and volunteers handed out bespoke event medals (the same medal for both distances). A tent to the side had tables of water and bananas for finishers, and there was a bespoke back-drop stand for photograph opportunities.
Overall mum and I really enjoyed this event – we had a great morning and would both take part again. Would recommend it to others, too! 🙂
NEXT UP: Tonbridge Half Marathon, Sunday 6th October 2019