Promise from a 10k race
On Saturday I went out to see how the pins (as 2P would say) were feeling. Not good. After 3k of shuffling, I decided my desire to run well on Sunday was overly ambitious, so changed a planned 6k easy jog into a 15k Hadd run (which strangely got better with the passing kilometres).
Sunday was a fragrantly delightful Spring day. Such was my lack of confidence about being able to run well (and addiction to Hadd mileage), that I decided to include the 10k race as part of a long run. Training shoes for this one, not the lighter Frees. I parked at Parliament house and 'warmed up' by running 6.4k back to the start, arriving with 10 minutes to spare.
Before long I was racing back from whence I came, running not far behind Sonia from the Speedygeese. Curiously, I wasn't feeling too bad. The 1k mark came up in 4:29 (really 4:17, as it had taken 12 seconds to get to the start mat). The next two kilometres were 4:11 and 4:16! Wow – 12:44 for 3k. This is strange, I thought, I'm running quickly. Then came 'the hill' up to John's house at 5k. I couldn't push my heart-rate above 155. Normally on a hill it'd be 160ish. My 5k split was 22:34. I was being overtaken by young children and old men now, but thankfully, no grandmothers pushing prams.
For the next 5k I ran along as best I could, feeling a bit tired, but not terrible, and with the heart-rate now around 148-150. I felt good in the final kilometre, enjoying running the last 300 metres or so with a very talented young girl, who sprinted ahead under the timing clock. I was very surprised (and pleased) with a chip time of 45:43. Now I just had to run the 4.5k back to the car!
I've been thinking about what can be learned from this race. Robert Song's suggestion about having a "target 5k race", rather than just racing regularly through the summer season has merit. I'm thinking of a compromise – a target month – maybe February, where I can race two or three times seriously, therefore giving myself a chance of good weather conditions (no wind and not too hot). The 5k at the ACT Vets Championships is also tempting, but that race is usually held in late March, not long after my 45k bush walk/jog through the Blue Mountains.