Not this guy, but I'm pretty chuffed
3 mile w/u
5 mile race, 27:28
5 mile c/d
Splits: 5:09, 5:26, 5:36, 5:44, 5:32
If you were to judge this race only by the splits, and not knowing the course, you'd think I'd run like a complete arse. However, the effort was pretty consistent, and after the first half mile I picked up 20-25 places over the course of the run without getting passed by anyone. The first mile had about a 1km straightaway which was pretty flat, possibly a slight decline. A right turn took us towards the mile marker with that 600m gradually downhill. In truth the first mile was too quick, but only by about 5-10 secs, nothing major. Just past the mile marker we had a steep half mile downhill, before a sharp right turn into a steep half mile uphill and into the wind. I tried to conserve as much energy as possible on the downhill and really attacked the uphill, with this section being the area of the race I made up the most ground. The third mile was predominantly flat for the first 1200 before starting to climb, so was pleased to see that the split for this mile was my target pace. The fourth mile was all uphill, although the gradient wasn't too steep. As I was running I did think I had slowed to a greater extent than I actually did and was pleased to get to 4 miles in under 22 mins. At this point however, I was fucked with that capital F, with a pretty severe side stitch. Despite the last mile being flat, I did think I was going to struggle to get home in the 6 mins I needed to break 28. However, drawing on the spirit of Frank the Tank, I managed to keep my composure, not freak out, and realise that the 2 guys ~10 yards ahead of me weren't pulling away despite my struggles. Made a reall effort to make the ground up on them, getting there with about 500 to go, and despite having absolutely no kick at all managed to pass the 2 goys to get in.
I'm very happy with this run as I got in ~30secs quicker than I was hoping for, but the most pleasing thing about it was how quickly I recovered afterwards, and the 5 miles after the run was really pretty easy. The base is there, I'm definitely lacking quality work in training, but I'm not changing the plan. If I can keep doing what I'm doing for the next 14 weeks till Marathon Monday then I'm going to have a great base to start thinking about running this type of distance more competitively in the future. Definitely great to be back competing though. I was sitting on the can this morning (Sharing too much??) wondering what the hell I had gotten myself into, when I realised that that type of feeling was what I had missed about running. Definitely helped with the nerves, and totally enjoyed the day.
Ridiculously long post I know, but final point, was there was 5800 people in the race. Surprised but happy that so many people are making an effort to improve their health. Given what I do, I spend a lot of time around out of shape, overweight/obese diabetics who totally abuse their bodies. It's pretty inspiring to see people make the effort to improve themselves.