For me the Ron Hill Accrington 10K was where it all started. I remember right at the start of 2014, I had just completed a Couch to 5K programme using treadmills in the gym and had just plucked up enough courage to go running outdoors. I spotted a poster for the race while out on a run in the town and decided to give it a go. So there it began, my first ever 10K race and the inaugural Ron Hill 10K.
I can’t even remember how many times I have run the route, all three variations of it. Usually not in the best of conditions through Jan and Feb, this year was the first time I did a recce without hailstones!
It’s a long slog up the old railway line, a gradual and what seems like a never-ending incline. More often than not my foot goes numb before reaching the turn off in Baxenden. There has been many a mental battle with that stretch of the route just as I’ve heard lots of others describe it in much the same way.
The great thing about this race, is it has a fast start, two miles flat and once you have conquered the slog up the old railway line you have about two miles all pretty much downhill. This, for me, is heaven. I am quite proud of my speed on a downhill and it’s where I can usually make up for any lost time with numb feet!
The finish is super fast, fun and easily makes up for the path of doom.
The finishing straight is great too, turning the corner onto Blackburn Road at some speed to be greeted with the cheers of the townsfolk and fellow club runners, those last few hundred meters offer an epic sprint finish.
I will always have a soft spot for this race and have participated every year since it began, I’m an Accy lass and proud of my home run, my first race that will quite possibly be one of my favourite races for years to come.