Parkrun 12- 30:26
OH YES, you heard me- I am pleased to say that I’m within a whisker of getting inside the hallowed 30 minute barrier- Something I’ve been aiming for since I started Parkrun back in late August.
As you’ll have seen from my previous running posts, I am what can only be described as an ever so slightly lazy runner- I have great swathes of time off where I don’t go out at all, I get bored easily and head home before I should, I get tired and wander around when I should be doing sprint training. All in all, I’m not very dedicated. Or motivated, but, and I’m not sure what’s happened, IT’S ALL CHANGED!
I’m a little bit excited- don’t know if you can tell! Anyhow, after my traditional period of ‘I’m too busy to run, I’ll go next week’ over Christmas, I finally threw myself back into the training, with some slow, pootly and not very long runs, just to get back into the swing of it. Then I finally decided to risk putting together a training plan. I like lists. I like making them, but it doesn’t mean I’ll follow them, so usually this will mean a productive 20 minutes with the highlighter pens, followed by not actually carrying it through. This time though, I was good- Last Sunday, I went out (where usually I’d traditionally have a rest because of the exertions of the previous day’s parkrun- I’ve previously ignored the fact that long, slow runs are really for recovery and so you can do two days of running back to back).
Then on Monday, I was intending on going out for a speed session. Mark got in late from work, so I didn’t bother. That was my excuse- rubbish, eh? BUT, on Tuesday I got straight back into it and did my speed sesh (1k warm up, 4x 400m fast, with walk breaks in between, 1k cool down) and it was bloody brilliant. Cold, but brilliant. In fact, it was so cold, that I cut my walk breaks short, so I could get home quickly. I think I was getting up to about 5 minute kms on the fast bits, which is pretty nippy for me!
On Wednesday, I got up at 4am to go to Bruges, and didn’t get in until 10pm, so that was a good excuse to not go for a run, but on Thursday, I did a tempo session. It turned out to be a really piddly little tempo session and I should have doubled it really (I did the warmup and cool down, plus 1km at tempo pace- I found this handy little calculator on Runners World which lets you calculate the various paces)- Got home feeling pleased, but really I should have had a little walk and done another k, so I’ve re-jigged my training plan to do just that.
Anyway, by the time it got to Friday, I was thinking to myself ‘ooh, I really want to go for a run’ which was a lovely feeling- I’m actually properly getting into this- I always like it when I’m actually out on the streets, and I like the fact that I can eat additional cake in exchange for running, but I’ve never particularly liked the bit when you’re standing by the radiator trying to force yourself out into the cold, so I feel like I may have turned a tiny corner on my path to being able to describe myself as ‘a real runner’. Anyway, I decided in the end to save myself and stayed in and ate a massive Domino’s pizza, which brings us to…
Parkrunday- The usual saturday sleepiness, followed by standing out on the start line, covered in goosebumps, followed by GO! And off I went- Rather than my usual ‘I better save myself for the second lap, or I’ll be knackered’ strategy that I tend to employ, I went out at a fair old clip, and thought I’d just go with it and see what happened. Happily, what happened was I managed to keep up the pace (just)- my tracking app told me I did:
km 1- 6:07
km 2- 5:59
km 3- 6:19
km 4- 6:21
km 5- 5:40
The app measured me as being about 100 metres short of the fifth k, which accounts for the stonkingly speedy time on the home stretch, although I must admit, I did really push it- after trying that hard for the rest of it, I didn’t want to let myself down on the last bit. And the second k was downhill, which accounts for a certain amount of zoom there. Looks like I need to work on picking the pace up in the middle section though.
Anyway, a finishing time of 30 minutes 26, and I have been feeling very pleased with myself the whole weekend! AND I’m in spitting distance of breaking the mythological 30 minute barrier. No parkrun for me this week, as I have wedding cakes to make, but I’m going to be keeping up the mid week runnings and am very much looking forward to getting back out there and joining the under 30 club the week after next- Wish me luck!