Monday, December 17, 2007

I'm bringing XC back

Something I’ve managed to avoid, not purposely, in my years of running is cross country. I’ve always been a road boy, but this weekend this is about to change as I take part in my first cross country race.

As sports were never a big thing in our school when I was younger, the winter mornings of running cross country while the P.E. teacher had a mug of hot coffee to keep themselves warm never happened in my part of the world. We did get a half day every Wednesday under the pretence that it was for sports but this never really happened. I think I played a bit of table tennis for a year or so on the Wednesday afternoons until I decided it more fun to take the half day.

That means in the 2 years I’ve been competitively and the 3 years of jogging before that I never once got to run around in the mud. I don’t really know what I’m letting myself into either. I have images of losing shoes in mud, trying to climb hills but sliding back down and just slipping in the home straight. It is not just my first cross country race, but my first race in London, my first for the new club so I want to make a decent impression and that impression be for the right reason.

This is also the first race back post marathon. I’ve only just started speed work this week so I’m not expecting too much from the race. If anything I should finish strong rather than fast. There’s absolutely nothing to lose in a race like this so I think I’ll take a few chances, such as start with the front runners and stay up front for as long as possible. If I feel good after a mile or so has passed (the course should be around 5 miles) I’ll up the tempo again. I’m pretty much going to go with what my legs feel like – no watch, no aims, no pressure, just run.

Wish me luck…
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