The 15k tempo run
The first 3k took us along the main trail, down a narrow bush track to Campbell Park then towards the Duntroon golf course. This turned out to be the 'warm-up' as I chatted to Mick about his marathons, injuries and plans to return to track racing. 5:38, 5:41 and 5:30 for those kilometres. I wound up the pace as we ran down to and around the perimeter of the golf course. We re-grouped at Molonglo Reach before running the rest of the course which follows the bike path through the Wetlands, beside the lake to Commonwealth Bridge then back to a finish point at the bottom of Anzac Parade. This part of the loop is flat apart from the bridge, and easy running.
After the Wetlands, Andy and Jen took up the pacing duties. Easy running for both, as it was a little slower than Andy's expected marathon pace and slower than Jen's usual long-run pace. I was hanging on, not in total comfort. Mick, Tori and Kelley (chatting all the way) were about 50 metres behind. My kilometres from 4 to 15 went: 5:07, 4:49, 5:10, 5:02, 5:01, 4:59, 5:04, 5:15, 5:11, 5:26 (the bridge), 5:08 and 5:17. I was quite happy to stop at 15k with the others. Kelley though, insisted on jogging the 1k back up to the War Memorial (there's something strange about marathon runners). The 15k took 1:18:19 to run (5:13 per k or 8:24 per mile), so not quite the 15k at 5:04s I was thinking about last week. It was still a good run though and a confidence-booster for Melbourne. If I don't break 1:40 I'll be hoping for a result near the 1:41:50 that Canute ran last weekend — and also hoping for similarly pained and dramatic finish photos!