Disclaimer: again none of this will make sense. Spoiler, I ran crap but I’m happy. Go figure. The tunes are on the playlist.
Friday came along. Heat 8 of the GAA miler met 1500m. Seeded no. 1 and in the inside lane. And sort of up for it. Now I know my track form, I know the way I have been feeling recently and was under no illusions, this was simply a battle with the head. Get round. Don’t die. Don’t drop out. Breathe. Easiest thing not to run again. It was going to be honking, but I was determined to give it a right go. Had a warm up with the Legend and we got lost and went further than expected though we weren’t the only ones (getting a rep Connell ;)) but onwards to the start after watching some phenomenal 5000m races and a cracking finish by Tony McGale in the 1500m heat before ours. Had a word with Jim White, the Legend, before the race. He is flying just now. In a rare bit of honesty I said I thought he could run 4.43 and told him that I would say this once in my life and once only. I told him I looked forward to seeing him a long way away from me tonight and smashing it. You know where this one is going. He is a friend first and running rival further down the list so I’m cool with that. My old fella would have killed me.
And we were away.
Being in lane 1 I made the fatal mistake of getting boxed in straight away. I went to the back then up the side in behind Jim and the pacemaker at the front, albeit in lane 3, but I couldn’t keep it going. I was knackered. I did try. I fell back, and back and further back. I dug in though. One paced. No real push as I tried to go after a stream of runners just ahead over the last lap, and an 11th place out of 14 on a season (s)low of 4.53.
Jim won the race at a canter in 4.43, a new PB by 7 seconds and well deserved for the graft he has put in. Delighted for the fella, top bloke and talented runner.
Thanks Bobby Gavin at thatonemoment.co.uk for the fantastic race pics.
Now I had mixed feelings on this one. Disappointed of course. But happy I had seen it through. One of those eureka moments where you realise that it’s simple and either the track legs aren’t here this season or I am just not a good track runner. And that doesn’t matter anymore. Use it to try and improve other areas of my running and don’t take it seriously. I haven’t done track training, I got my rewards.
I got up Saturday morning and felt fresh since I had hardly physically knocked my pan in on the Friday night. Went to the club session, to be 5 x 1000m with 500m recovery at Strathclyde Loch. About 5k pace. I would tend to do these about 3.45 usually but alongside my wee group of Brian McLinden and Stevie Allen I decided to lead off, and although Stevie would peg me back over the last 100 or so of each one I didn’t just hit my marker but got faster one each one. 3.38, 3.34, 3.29, 3.28 and finally 3.21. That’s a boost. That’s a lift.
That’s game back on.
Ok I may not have track speed, but that’s good speed endurance for my level. Sunday and long run, only 11 miles, but for the first time in a few weeks I didn’t stop.
Now we are talking. So I may not be where I was and I may never be there again, but I’m running. And I enjoyed it at the weekend like a fog had lifted from my head.
5 years to the week since I went on the Champix to stop smoking and joined Jogscotland I listened to Kit and Komms Kev Kardashian’s words of wisdom.
“Shoes on. Heid doon. RUN!!!!!!!!”
Indeed. JUST DAE IT! So for this week I’m ok. I have the Fresh Feeling. I do have an 800m to do for the club next weekend that I have committed to, but that’s ok. Won’t let them down and I will do my best. There’s a lot to be thankful for. I’m glad and proud I’m not that heavy drinking smoker anymore. I know the chances of me ever winning a race are as remote as Coldplay ever bringing out an album that I like, but I’m cool with that. Sod championships and everything like it. If stress interferes with the enjoyment of running then I’ll find another area of running. I don’t want to walk away from the sport like I did in 1990. If I don’t fancy a particular race or run I won’t do it. And I owe explanations to no-one 🙂 . Until next time, Shoes on, heid doon, RUN!
More eels this week, but a cheerier one. This one is beautiful.