The conditions for the race weren't ideal for getting a PB - 29 mph winds, sleet, rain, sun, a bit of all seasons really - but I gave it my best shot. Before going into this race my coach told me I wouldn't be fast but I'd be strong at the end and that is exactly how I felt. Finishing the race I couldn't have gone any faster but there was definitely another mile or so that I could of pushed out at that pace. At the moment I'm running on strength and pretty soon the track sessions start so faster times aren't too far away.
The course was two laps of my local park. It was nice to have a shot at racing around this park considering I train there most days of the week. It's a totally flat route which meant that a fast time was up for grabs if there wasn't a head wind for the most part of it. With the park being so close I got to leave my house about 45 minutes before it started and still had plenty of time to drop my bags and get my warm up in before the race started. If only every race could start so close to home!
The first lap of the race went by quick enough. I was in the middle of a large group which took some of the impact of the wind away. At the half way mark there was a marshal shouting out times - I reached there at 14m 02s. That had me well on course to go under my best time for a 5 mile race. Keeping the pace for another 2 plus miles was going to be difficult though, especially as the group had thinned out and I was pretty much on my own chasing 2 guys ahead of me (there were a lot more people in front of them - I was in my own little race at this time!) meaning I wouldn't have any wind breakers in front of me.
Disappointingly I didn't catch the two guys ahead of me but at the same stage no one passed me either in the second lap. I tried to kick with a mile to go but the body told me I was going as fast as I could so I just continued on at that pace. I reached the line in 28 minutes 28 seconds which is a good 20 seconds faster than my old 5 mile PB. I was a bit annoyed at running the second half 26 seconds slower but I got over that very quickly.
As I said to my coach last night, it's nice to know that my running on strength this year is faster than my running on speed last year. I've no races scheduled in April so far but I'll talk to my coach about what the plan is for the next month during the week.
All in all, it's a happy Private signing out.