The improvements continued this past weekend when I headed over to Bakewell parkrun. This was my second visit to this new parkrun, having done the 2nd ever one back in January. I did that even though I was injured. So I’ve been wanting to go back for a while to put in a better account of myself. Funny thing was that day the Broom’s also did this parkrun and this time out they also did it. I also bumped in to Ben from Tideswell and old friends from Sheffield RC. I was still annoyed with Tuesday night and the fact I had missed the Even Splits race at York. Plus the previous night it was the fast Podium 5k. I swear one day I will do that darn race!
I had managed a decent speed session on Thursday in absence of no racing. I had done 3 x 10 minutes off a 2 minute recovery. Recording 1.79, 1.81 and 1.80 miles in each of the 10 minutes which I was pretty pleased with. It wasn’t till Saturday morning I decided on Bakewell, I want to do Stretford again but conditions, plans after and fact a local parkrun to Stretford was off meant I opted for Bakewell. Having arrived in plenty of time to do toilet and warm up with Brooms and a catch up with Ben it was soon time to line up on the start line. As always I had a plan. I knew it was up hill going out and this time plan was to have a good start. Keep middle smart and give it everything on way back.
As we set off one bloke soon sprinted away from the rest of us. I was then in the chasing pack with 3 other runners. As we headed up the trail it was a good early tussle and we pushed each other. The course is on the old railway line but compared to a good tarmac surface or track the return you get from each foot strike was less and discussions with other runners reckon the profile/surface is worth a good 20-30s. I think looking at my splits it’s about right. On a flat first mile I’ve been running in the 5:20’s but on Saturday I had to really work hard to get a 5:31 first mile. It was by then the field had really thinned out. A runner had pulled away into second place and I was battling for 3rd with a young lad. The 0.6 miles up to turn around point was tough. I was struggling to get under 6:00 pace and was relieved to see the marshal at the turn around point. The thing is it takes you a while to get going again and the 2nd mile ended up being 20s slower then first mile.
By now I was running on my own so it became a time trial all the way back to the finish. Lad in front was too far ahead for me to see him and I was too far in front of 4th to work off. So it became a mental battle to keep pace going but I dug in as I passed runners coming the other way. Keeping an eye on my pace and doing my damnedest to keep it as fast as possible. Soon the finish was in sight. The 3rd mile buzzed for 5:40. I then sprinted hard to finish 3rd in 17:38. Last time I did 18:16, finished 3rd and 1st in my age category. This time I finished in 17:38 in 3rd place and 1st in my age category, so same position despite being 38s faster.
I still think it’s a case of when not if this year with regards to posting a seriously fast time. I do think sub 17 is within my grasp if I can just find the right race and everything clicks. Until then I will continue to keep chipping away at my times. Including my two 10k’s I’ve now recorded 7 consecutive sub 18 5k’s in a row, my best run ever.
- 3rd in 17:38