Runners’ Stories: My First 10000m Race at Age 40

Jeff Cheung

As an amateur runner with a marathon personal best of 2:52, I have always wanted to challenge myself with track racing. When a local 10000m event was announced, I signed up despite inconsistent training, knowing the competition would be stiff.

With a 10km best of 36 minutes, my form was not ideal. I knew I couldn’t keep pace with the elites, and would struggle to maintain speed and endurance.

I started conservatively, aiming to last 40 minutes without walking. My legs got tired quickly but I persevered. As the front-runners raced off, I focused on pacing and rhythm.

Though unable to break my personal best, completing the race within 40 minutes was a proud progress. I finished in the bottom quarter, clocking 38:45—disappointing—given my history, but a reminder of my capability.

This experience, despite falling short of expectations, inspired me. It highlighted my limits yet resilience. The difficult run motivates harder training and a continued journey of pursuit in a running career now long, yet only just beginning.

Though already 40, with dedicated work I can still achieve more. My first 10000m may bring speed and stamina disappointment, yet satisfaction in lessons learned, and motivation for progress ahead.