Sunday, February 23, 2014

Chipping away at the 5k time

I've had some feelings of improved fitness over the past 4 weeks — barely perceptible at times, but I sense movement in the right direction. Yesterday I had a good Parkrun 5k race, placing 55th (out of 208) and 3rd M55 in 24:00. That's 33 seconds quicker than when I raced Leonie on January 26. Also encouraging is that I trained normally during the week rather than taking two days off prior to the race as before. Average HR was a little lower too at 146 compared to 148 — a good sign.

The race itself was good fun. It was Tuggeranong Parkrun's 1st birthday event and special guests at the run were Katy Gallagher (ACT Chief Minister) and Rob de Castella. They congratulated organisers Kelly and Gareth before lining up at the back of the field for a run. Shortly after the start I found myself running just behind my long-time rival Jim. I tailed him and a girl in blue through the first km before pushing ahead under the bridge. To my surprise Jim struck back shortly after on the footbridge across the lake and surged to establish a 20 metre break. Luckily a lady in purple came past and I latched onto her in an effort to keep the elastic to Jim from stretching too much.

For the last half of the race I was running as hard as possible. Trying to limit the damage and not giving myself a chance of catching Jim. He actually extended the gap to 16 seconds at the finish. I ground to a chug up the slight hill into the park (that felt like the mountain displayed on the birthday cake!). Kilometre splits had been 4:51, 4:49, 4:45, 4:50 and 4:44. So, a happy race in spite of finishing behind Jim, the aforementioned lady in purple and a mum pushing a child in a stroller. Hopefully a sign of more happy races and fast times to come.

Deek posted this great photo of the birthday cake on his Twitter account

Barely a ripple on the lake during the February 8 Parkrun


Blogger Janene said...

Good to see things heading in the right direction for you ET. I wonder which course is quicker, Gungahlin or Tuggers?

8:42 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well done on the steady progress.

Deek would also be in the M55 category, so you were pitted directly against him – and I note from wombat’s diary that you finished ahead of him.

10:11 pm  
Blogger speedygeoff said...

Gungahlin is quicker. And very few non parkrunners despite it being a lovely day. There is a little coffee shop just down the road, too, nice and quiet. Only my group of 5, plus 2 others we didn't know, were there. Everyone else had shot through. Seemed funny driving past the Ginninderra course on my way there though.

11:56 am  
Blogger Ewen said...

Thanks J. Haven't raced Gungahlin so I'll take Speedygeoff's word that it's faster. Tuggers has the narrow 'seeded' start now so it takes at least 3 seconds to get running ;-) I'll have to renew my passport and venture north to race you one day.

Canute, I think he's a month or two older. In Deek's defence he ran with his wife, so no doubt would be capable of a much faster than time than 29:12. Pehaps 24:01?

Speedygeoff you certainly burned up the paths of Gungahlin on Saturday - 21:46 is flying. I'll convert that to 22:00 at Tuggers ;-)

3:12 pm  
Blogger Chad Aaron Sayban said...

You really do have a nice progression with your 5k race times this year. Great job, Ewen!

6:12 am  
Blogger Ewen said...

Thanks Chad. It's slow going! Wouldn't mind a 45-second breakthrough in one of them. Please!

6:48 pm  
Blogger Mark Watson said...

What a beautiful place to run. Congratulations on a job well done, the anniversary and a placing well ahead of the great Deeks. Don't be too hard on yourself when it come to strollers though. I hear some are motorised these days!

10:20 am  
Blogger Ewen said...

Mark, the lovely scenery takes your mind off the pain ;-) Now there's a plan - motorised stroller, borrow a baby and I'm away...

6:03 pm  
Blogger Superflake said...

Good run Ewen. Moving better.

8:23 am  
Blogger RICK'S RUNNING said...

Its nice to know you still enjoy racing after all these years!

10:44 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Great running & well done on 3rd in your age group. What fun to finish in front of Deeks! Your race reports always make me wish I lived in Canberra :)


12:52 pm  
Blogger Ewen said...

Thanks Paul. Good luck at 6' if you're racing.

Rick, yes, love racing! And the racing is actually better once you're slower - there are more people to race against!

Thanks Fiona. His wife seemed pretty keen - hopefully she'll run again. Glad you don't live here - you'd be thrashing me every week ;-)

9:21 pm  
Blogger Raina R. said...

I love reading your comments almost as much as your blog!
I will have to remember that elastic band trick next time I race- :) Looks so lovely there for late summer/early fall.

5:46 pm  
Blogger Ewen said...

Occy straps work in lieu of elastic bands Raina. Get the extra-long stretchy ones. Yes, we're coming to the almost too perfect for running season now.

8:26 pm  
Blogger Black Knight said...

A very good finishing time and an encouraging negative split (the 4:50 doesn't count).
With Giorgio we are planning a ParkRun in London in may....who knows?

6:00 pm  
Blogger Ewen said...

Thanks Stefano. That's exciting about the London Parkrun - I'll predict a time in the 24-25 minute range for both you and Giorgio.

6:38 pm  

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