Good luck at the final race of the Grand Prix!

Leeds Abbey Dash

The Age UK Leeds Abbey Dash takes place on Sunday and is the final race of the 2015 runbritain Grand Prix.

Will you be one of the 12,000 due to be running in this race that marks the 30th anniversay of the event? The race provides one of the fastest 10km courses in the country but to run your fastest time you need to be as 'up for it' mentally as much as physically.

Over the next two days you should only be doing very light physical training, so that your body is fresh for the race, but you could ramp up your psychological training and practise visualisation.

You may have seen Olympic athletes using visualisation or imagery before they start their race. They may have their eyes closed or be looking down the track. They will be playing the scenario in their mind as they mentally prepare for the race. This won't be the first time they have done this. During their preparation in the weeks and months before the race they will have taken time to use imagery and instil self belief.

It is not only the race that you need to prepare for. You need to plan what you will do in the hours before the race. Click here for advice on how to arrive at the race in an optimal state and click here for final information.

Take note of the assembly area and plan where you will do your warm up as well as what you will do. Have you practiced it? Rather than running during the next two days you could just go out and practice your warm up routine. Aim to get to the start line feeling 'up for it' but with a sense of calmness and control. You will get that more easily if your warm up has gone to plan and you know exactly where you are within the time frame that you have planned.

This booklet also contains a map of the route with kilometre markers and  the cheering stations and will help you to mentally rehearse your run. Another useful map is here. You can play through the animation speed and take note of where the slopes and turns are and also look at the street-view function so that will know exactly where you are every step of the way.

Make a plan for your race:

  • What split times to you want to hit at each kilometre marker?
  • How will you gauge your pace from the start?
  • What are you going to concentrate on in each section? Will it be your rhythm? Will it be sticking with the group around you? Will it be increasing your pace or holding it steady?

Keep your eye on the weather forecast. Currently it is for rain and a wind from the south-west, that should be blowing across you, but warm temperatures at 15 degrees. Consider your clothing. If the weather is as per the forecast, it  won't be cold once you start running so maybe less is more in terms of clothing.

All the best for the race. We look forward to seeing your result and an improvement in your handicap score!