The 2014 season started in earnest, kind of suddenly! One minute it was all ice and snow and basement cycling, next it was time for lung-busting, running scared stuff.
First up was the new race in Liverpool, It’s a Shore Thing half marathon on May 3. I knew that I wasn’t going to set the world on fire. It’s a lovely scenic course, but challenging… not especially hilly, just… well, not an easy route. Talk about being lucky with the weather though! Race day was sunny and warm, just perfect running weather really. The race entries had capped out over the 5k, 10k and half distances, though there weren’t very many takers for the 21.1km race.
As soon as the gun went, one young lad, Simeon Fancy from Milton set off into the distance. He is only 17, but fast over 5k. This was his first HM, and he only entered on a whim. The small pack of us behind were predicting that he would blow, having gone out too hard… more on that in a minute.
The coastline along Beach Meadows towards Eagle Head is fantastic, a bit of broken pavement and a strong camber detracted a little from taking in the view, but I was running steadily, and dropped my companions around the 8km mark. Simeon nowhere in sight…
Around 10km, he came back into view having made a turnaround at the 12km point – still looking strong, and obviously not going to crash and burn! Hmm. Steady running, keep Victor back in third.
That’s the story of that one. Second place and first AG, but a long way off my best and roundly trounced by a 17 yo running 1:19 – yikes.
The following weekend, after a full training week, was the Osprey 5k in Riverport. Again, a bit of an unknown as I haven’t managed as consistent a running training regime as the last couple of years. Part of the reason for that were those achilles tendon issues that have plagued me for the past 10 months. Well, curiously, after the previous weekend race and hard brick on Sunday, I woke up to no pain on Monday – none, not a twinge – go figure.
Good turnout for the 5k, it’s a popular race and many of the South Shore usual suspects were there, including quite a few fellow BTCers. Race morning was a bit breezy and cool and when we set off there was a lot of jockeying for position in the best draft! Ran 1km in 3:38, oh oh too fast, and immediately started to struggle. There was a seemingly huge crowd in front of me still, and I hung on until 4km with little change in placing. The last kilometre was tough though – lack of race fitness and fast running taking its toll. I lost 5 places in that last bit to run in 16th and only 5th AG – boo! However, I also managed a 5k PB in 19:37 – hurrah!
So, should I be happy with the PB, or dismayed that there are so many folk locally who make that seem very pedestrian! How on earth do I make the leap from there to 18:xx, especially whilst triathlon training for distance – I think it is possible, just not sure how.