Posted: 26/05/2015 at 11:02
Battersea Park 5k. I'd seen Dach's report, i'd checked the standard, so I thought, I'd get myself down there.
Was cursing a bit that I'd found a fast good standard 5k at the same time I'm trying to get rid of this rib muscles inflammation, but thought I'd give it a go, and could dress it up as a "good training session", or "race practice" if needed.
After a weekend of two trips to Wembley, (one massively heartbreaking) and a morning jog yesterday not exactly feeling gorgeous, I set off on the hour drive thinking, is this a good idea, this is definitely not a good idea, what in blazes am I doing, for a 7pm race start.
Got there, had a long walk to find registration, and was trying to ignore I was breathing a bit heavier than I'd like just walking. Also felt blimming windy, and undulating. So basically full on pre race panic!
Had seen that the last race had about 20 people sub 17, so suspected I wouldn’t be anywhere near the top end, so just thought, i’ll run as it comes.
I’ve only done 2 5ks in the last 18months, with them both being the Wycombe parkrun where I cruised to 2nds, so a decent race over the distance felt pretty rare. So different to the days I used to do 5 over 6weeks or so.
Set off, and used 3.24 per km as a light benchmark, knowing that’s 17 dead fare.
Through first km in 3.18, so a good start, a little ahead of “target”, but not madly so. Route felt quite nice and flat, unlike the bits I’d walked round earlier, and the wind had largely disappeared too.
Second km is always key. You need that on track, to give confidence you haven’t got too excited in km1. 3.25 sounded good to me, this was going alright.
2 lap course, so past the start/finish areas, and could I keep this going for half way and 3k? Was delighted to see a 3.25 again, consistent, and from this point knew something good could be on the agenda. Didn’t want to get too excited, as targets can disappear instantly in a 5k. However, I knew that i had a few seconds for a possible sub 17.
K4 is often the hardest km, the effort versus split always seem not to make sense. But if you can get to 4k sort of on track, you give yourself a chance of a last km rampage. 3.28 split. Didn’t try and do any maths, but put effort into working at the right intensity.
Definitely helped having a little gang around at different stages to work off, overtook a few near the end, and was screaming in my head, where is that finish.
Came up to sight of the clock, it’s in the mid 1650s..... 1654, 1655...time seems to last forever, and finally lunge for the line and over...
16.58 on my watch, but will they find extra to add?
Wandered about a bit, trying to engage a few randoms in conversation, including a guy who pre race was sporting what can only be described as a “manic grin”. Not sure if he was a little bit mad, or just nervous. Some Serpentine woman looked about as keen to chat as she was to share a lift with someone with severe Bauchschmerzen.
But anyway, i thought i’d hang about until the prize giving, just so i could hear what time 7th did, to roughly benchmark against.
Typically they started with vet women, then women, then vet women, while i was looking at my watch remembering an hour drive home to come...
When I heard one of the V50 prizes was 18.01, and I didn’t recognise him as beating me, I started thinking, i might just sneak a medal here.