ACT Masters' 3000m, 8 November — I was hoping to run a season's best and dip well under 14 minutes but I had one of those awful races where the second half feels like you're running through ever-deepening mud. It was an unusually cold night at the Woden track, not my favourite weather, about 9 degrees celsius. Helen was running and had been good form, recently breaking 30 minutes for the hilly BBQ Stakes 6k lunch run. I started a little faster than customary to take up a position following Helen for the first 3 laps, passing 1000m in 4:34 (13:42 3k pace), Dale and Roger just behind. Then it all started going wrong, the elastic to Helen breaking as Dale and Roger gave chase. I continued to fade, running the second km in 4:44 and third in 4:53, finishing 11th in 14:10.4. Roger way ahead in a good 13:40 followed by Helen in 13:51 and Dale in 14:06.
Wagga 5k Parkrun, 17 November — A much better race! Three members of the Speedygeese were running, Geoff (chasing the M70 course record), myself and Lisa (returning from injury). It was a beautiful morning, calm as we warmed up (which turned into a very gentle breeze), perhaps a fraction warm at around 17 degrees celsius. The small field of 124 runners and walkers allowed us to take up position close to the front on the wide start line. Geoff took off purposefully (I knew he was aiming for under 24 minutes), and his pace felt just about right as we moved past a few overenthusiastic starters. "Sub-5 pace?" enquired Geoff after a few minutes. "Definitely!" The 1k split was 4:37 and we were still catching people. I eased ahead of Geoff on the rough section at the north of the lake, setting my sights on catching a lady running about 30 metres ahead of us. The split for the second k was 4:41 and I knew Geoff wasn't far behind (hearing his loud breathing, which continued all the way to the finish). I overtook the young lady (she would run 25:03) before the turn on the out/back course. I tried to keep the speed up running back and it felt like I was, even though the next two splits were both 4:48. I had another bloke to chase for the last kilometre as a young runner flew past, making us both look slow! A final sprint for the line and 24th place in a time of 23:42, Geoff not far behind (smashing the M70 record by 2 minutes) in 23:50 and Lisa having an excellent run with a course PB of 25:09. Good race!
A calm Lake Albert, perfect for ducks and geese