AA - are you going to be all muscle bound when I see you at VLM??!!!
Carrot - nice parkrunning.
Chick - Blimey - Israeli martial arts sounds interesting!
Nell - well done on getting the 16 miles done.
Cranleigh 21 yesterday went really well, overall time 2.43.58 which was over a minute quicker than last year. My pacing strategy worked, although the first two blocks were a little quicker than planned, but the last 6 miles at MP were great - I just went for it and felt like I was flying. Overtook loads of runners and had a storming finish with the last two miles 7.12 and 7.13. That last mile has a steep hill as well, so it was great to finish so strongly.
Wow Tim - that was a storming parkrun - fantastic also that you ran it without a watch and just trusted your pace. You must have been stoked when the result came through
Angela - so pleased for you and your new PB - brilliant! As chick says, definitely in the sub 3.30 territory now
This deserves bold caps I LOVE THE CRANLEIGH 21!!!! I think I've done it about 6 or 7 times now, and it never disappoints. It's brilliant for a good pacing strategy, and testing enough with lots of undulations and a couple of nasty steep bits that make your legs burn!
The forecast was for wind and rain. The rain came, but the wind was nowhere near as bad as I had feared - the race starts early (9am - just what you need when the clocks have gone forward ) and the worst of the wind came later in the day. So it was breezy but nothing too bad, and only really 2 or 3 miles where it was into our faces.
As we lined up at the start the race announcer told us to watch out for the donkey that was to be part of the town's Palm Sunday procession....and then we were off. The race has to loops - a 9 mile and then a 6 mile which you do twice. The 9 mile loop is a series of undulations, nothing too steep apart from one bit just after the 7 mile mark. My plan was to take this section nice and easy, around 8.15 pace. I ended up a bit quicker - splits were 8.09, 8.16, 8.04, 7.58, 7.06, 7.50, 8.04, 8.16, 7.56 - but I was feeling really relaxed so just went with it.
The last mile in that lap comes through the town centre and past the church - no sign of the donkey though....
And so onto the next section. This lap is pretty flat apart from one leg sapping hill in the last mile. My plan here was to pick up the pace but keep it controlled - had aimed for 8's but again they were a bit quick - 7.43, 7.49, 7.54, 7.48, 7.43, 8.02. As I came up the hill at the end and down the other side I was wondering if I'd be able to pick up the pace again - I wanted to do the last 6 at marathon pace. As I hit the 15 mile marker I just went for it.
And now I was flying - my legs were sore but I felt fantastic, and was overtaking a lot of people now which is a great feeling and made me feel I was going even quicker. I didn't look at my garmin to check the pace until the next mile marker and I was really chuffed to see 7.19. OK, this feels good, manageable and I think I can hold this....the next 3 miles were into the wind, but I kept up the effort and those times were 7.29, 7.24, 7.29. Then we turned the corner out of the wind for the last 2 miles. Mile 20 was 7.12, and then into the final mile and that hill again at the end. As I started the climb I had just caught and passed another runner - he then kept with me and we ground it out side by side, pushing all the way. Up to the top and down the other side and then to the finish line (where he let me win!). Final mile was 7.13, which I was amazed with. Time on my watch was 2.43.58 (actual race time will probably be just over 2.44 as it took me a few seconds to cross the start line), and that is over a minute quicker than last year, so I am really really pleased with that. Especially as I had the 20 mile race just last weekend. Bring on London