Running better than Paula
In my current state of fitness, if I were to run 12:45 for a 3000 metre race I'd call that a 'good' performance. On Saturday afternoon I raced in the YCRC 3k at Campbell Park. I placed 23rd in 13:43, which looks to be well outside my definition of good. Thinking about it though, I'm encouraged. The race was cross-country (on dirt tracks actually); there were tree roots, rocks, rutted tracks to negotiate; a horse stile on a sharp turn at the 500m mark; a dry creek crossing; a climb of some number of metres to the half-way turn. Most of the runners in the race ran a minute or so slower than what they would for a track 3000, so I'll be generous and give myself a 'good' rating for that race.
How did my stride feel? Not quite as expansive as it did in the 5k the previous week. I tried to take on board Rick's tips (from Earl Fee's book) about keeping my hips and chest forward. I couldn't quite get it happening though. Perhaps the 10k jog I did Saturday morning took the edge off my legs. Improving my stride is still a work in progress. Also on Twitter, Pete L. linked to a video from Dr. Yessis about over-striding and stride length. The doctor makes some good points that make sense to me, including "If you want to increase your speed the first thing you should do is increase your stride length, not your stride frequency."