My sister-in-law (pictured on the right with Good Times 5k PR medal) has been asking me for months about where she can find a good 10k road race to run north of Boston. Of course, being the VTR expert, I thought it would be easy. After searching several race calendar websites I came to the conclusion that there really are not many 10k road races out there. I also checked my race history and noticed that of the 370+ races I have completed, only 7 of them have been 10ks. Interesting? I guess I don't really like the 10k distance. Anyway, after searching and discussing for a few months we finally found a great 10k road race right in our backyard, The Westford 10k Road Race (See video below.) I have never completed this race but on the same day they have the Westford 5k Road Race which I have done a couple of times. I loved the race but as someone who is not a big fan of 10ks, I always opted for the 5k.
Running the Westford 10K Road Race
After deciding on which 10k to run the next question was how to run this course successfully . Of course, she followed my advice to View The Race Before You Do the Race. From the video you can see this course is not easy. First you start on a slight downhill, leave the school grounds and then have to run up a short but tough little uphill to the Town Common. Once you get past the town common, you now have an incredible downhill to handle. Trust me...you will not encounter too many races in the Boston area with a downhill like this one. The real key to this downhill is to keep your legs under you and let the hill do the work. You don't want to overcook your legs but you do need to run faster than you normally would on this stretch of the course. You will need this "free speed" during the last mile of this course. Once the road levels out there are a few miles of rolling terrain where you will have a chance to settle into your normal race pace. I would be a little conservative through this stretch. The middle part of this course is not flat but there are no major hills to contend with. The toughest part of the course is the last half mile stretch of road on Main street. There is a very short but abrupt downhill as you take the right from Flagg Road on to Main Street. Use this as a "springboard" as you start the hill. Once on the hill you have to really dig deep to maintain your pace. This hill is going to feel a lot longer than a half mile. After reaching the finish at the Town Common there is a festive atmosphere and some really nice awards for each race.
If you are in the area on May 6th check out the Westford Road Race. Take on either the 10k or 5k. You will not be disappointed. Visit our race page for more info about this event or visit the Westford Road Race website.
What do you think is the best 10K road race?