A brief apology to Pre
New sub-3 man Scott Brown has been kind enough to nominate me as southern Canberra's answer to Steve Prefontaine. I've taken this on board and have decided to run all races out hard, in front — because (in the words of Pre) "winning any other way is chicken shit!"
This is the tactic I used in my recent Calgary ski jump 5k. Except that I wasn't "in front" — I'm too slow to ever be in front, but I can still race out hard, and bugger the consequences. These were my thoughts as I was chatting to Adam prior to the start on a beautifully cool and sunny day.
Sometime between that chat and the gun firing to send 63,000 runners charging down William Street, I reverted to type. I couldn't force myself to race out hard, so as I ran up to the Kings Cross tunnel, I said under my breath a brief apology to Pre — "forgive me this one time".
My conservatism resulted in a good race. I was relaxed and enjoying the day. I even threw my arms in the air in time to Enter Sandman, belted out by the band on the roof of the Golden Sheaf Hotel. I didn't die running up heart-break hill! I had time to look around and marvel at the people I was running with — from young teenagers to grey-haired ladies and a man pushing his child in a three-wheeled stroller.
I ran a strong last 4k, rushing down Military Road with my friends, and even managing something of a sprint for the 300 metres of Queen Elizabeth Drive to the finish. A 67:18 chip time was slower than last year, but I was happy. Maybe next year I'll listen to Metallica before the race, and that'll fire me up enough to race like Pre!