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Stretford parkrun #79

I must admit, it’s taken me all week to get round to writing up Saturday’s parkrun. all runners have peaks and troughs, at the moment I feel like I’m stuck in a deep trough. I will say/write it till I’m blue in the mouth but I still feel I peaked too early at my marathon when I did the Stamford 30k. That week I PB’d at 3000m in 9:54 and followed that up with 1:57:35 at 30k. These two results were ace but I’ve since gone from one below par race to another.

Running/racing for me is about times, finishing positions/wins come secondary, it’s where I get my enjoyment from. So when I’m not hitting times I want or my training is saying, it’s frustrating to say the least. At the moment I’m struggling to put my finger on it, did I over train for the marathon? did I not do enough recover properly after the marathon, have I just hit a plateau? My wife says that I need to pick one distance and stick to it, us as club runners (myself included) spread ourselves over distances from a mile up to a marathon. She has always said you can’t cover them all, you need to focusing on one, you will never get the time you want. Some runners can cover all distances but this year I’ve learnt I can either continue banging out reasonable times across the board or I switch and just focus on one distance at once……

I’ve been planning on a summer fast 10k time. I would like.. NO WANT to once again run under 36 minutes for 10k and been looking at a July race. Past few weeks the training has been more miss then hit, with me working round track races etc and looking at April’s and May’s training, there has been no real plan or vision. Leading up to last weeks parkrun, I did the Yorkshire Track 5000m even though I had been suffering with major niggles, a day later I did a 3 mile tempo run on the track. Tuesday I did 10 miles in 65 mins, Wednesday I did a 500m track session and a further speed session on Thursday night. Stupid I know but I got it into my head that I need a lot more speed work.

So come Saturday morning I had ideas of grandeur. I went back to Stretford as I’ve run my two fastest parkrun times there 17:06 and 17:09. It was warm but wasn’t overly concerned. I could/should have run in a vest but I had my Zeon tech top on. After the usual announcements it was go time, once again everyone was out fast but I soon worked my way up the field as we rounded the track. I felt strong early on as we exited the stadium into the park, as we ran through the park I was soon up to 3rd with a big gap to the leader. I hit first mile in 5:29 and as the route took us through the narrow bollards and down the out & back section was still running 5:4x pace. I noticed the out and back seemed further than in previous runs, I turned and like before I found it a real struggle to pick pace up again.

As I ran back towards the stadium to start the 2nd lap, I found myself once again working hard to try get the lap split back under 6:00. At this point I was still 3rd and was on for roughly same times as the other week. I hit the 2nd mile in 5:57,  not good but a 3s improvement on the previous outing. Then as we reached the furthest point of the course we started to hit traffic but at this point was plenty of room to work through them. I dropped to 4th before we hit the speed bumps. Then as we ran down the out and back section it was a nightmare as people on their first lap was running 3 and 4 abreast, making it impossible to get past people.

It meant I took the left side as marshalls asked runners to stay right, as I went to turn another runner cut right in front, I had to slam the breaks on and stop to avoid a collision. I got going again but I lost a lot of time. I also lost another position. I picked it up again but pace was wrong side of 6 minutes and as I entered the stadium I was out kicked on final 300m as I finished 6th in 17:41. On watch I got it as 17:40.8 but times are always rounded up.

I was proper sweaty after that run and annoyed about my time. I’m not going to complain about 1st lap runners as I think Stretford have identified the issue and are running this weeks course in reverse so will be interesting to see if it fixes the issues. My final thought on the matter, is start asking all runners to run single file unless overtaking on the out and back section, as it’s too narrow to run 3 abreast.

Getting back to me though it was another 5k and still a long way from where I’d like to be. Looking over past few years, I always seem to have a bad summer, I seem to have reasonable good early start to each year and always finish each year strongly but the middle I seem to dip. This year the dip started at the Trafford 10k and I’ve still not got out of it.

This week hasn’t improved my feelings but will continue the ramblings in my next blog report.

  • 6th in 17:41

Kit used in race

  • Zeon tech tee
  • Asics Split Shorts
  • Asics Hyperspeed 6
  • Sockmine lighweight griplock socks
  • Sockmine Sweat Band
  • Garmin 220

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