In this case it was fourth time lucky with this round, first two years were marred by injury and last year there were not enough women at the club to form an open women’s team.
I love relays, sure there are the logistics to work out, but there is always a good atmosphere amongst the controlled chaos and I was stoked to be lining up to run and not holding a clipboard and yelling at people to get out of my way to I could record times.
Over the last year our fortunes have changed and we were one short of TWO women’s teams. Everyone got a run today as we were able to enter a second mixed team that was made up of two women and two fellas, I was lucky enough to squeeze on to the women’s team
I ran last but with cheering team mates and other friends, catching up with people and waiting for change overs I didn’t get around to much of a warm up, only managing about 1km with some strides thrown in.
Our first two runners set us up nicely and even though I hadn’t been paying much attention I was pretty sure we were in second place when I got going, though I had no idea how far ahead I was. Starting towards the back meant I had to run down the straight in front of everyone, which results in lots of cheers from friends to gee me up, as I went past the Div 1 men who should I see but Craig Mottram himself, hmmm, try not to trip over your feet Em.
I settled in nicely, maybe too nicely and was worried that I’d gone out too hard, ahhh, bugger it, just go until it gets too hard then try to hang on When I went through the half way in 13:30 I though Eeeeep too fast maybe? Back down the straight again in front of everyone, hey, still feeling OK, weird, just go with it.
Next thing I know I can see the finish, I still feel pretty good and then it’s all over.
Ahhhh, I love that feeling you get after a really good run, when you know that everything just came together.
Splits were a bit all over the place though, probably reflecting the rise through the back straight –
0:52 (last 210 metres)
27:13 all up, but 22:04 at the 5km mark (admittedly Garmin measured) which was a massive road PB (currently 22:19) and lower than my track PB too (22:09). I take this as a pretty good sign because after both aforementioned PBs I was doubled over probably trying not to hurl, definitely not rallying for a further 1.2km.
AND, our team came second
Then I had to leave the track and rush home to work, walked in the door, fired up the lap top and was stuck with it for almost 4 bloody hours. Didn’t get time for a cool down jog and was sitting in horrible stinky clothes for ages before I finally got a shower.
I hesitantly turned out for a long run this morning, didn’t wake up feeling too stiff and sore but was annoyed about not being able to cool down properly yesterday, also was running with a group who would do a long run quicker than my usual pace.
Oh well, could always just drop off the back and starting with a group is all I need to get me going. When we got to 10.5km in about 56 minutes that was my cue to turn around and slow the feck down for the return journey while the marathoners went on their merry way. I had a Gel and some water and turned around for what I expected to be a bit of a slog home, but I couldn’t find the brakes
Some how I more or less kept up the pace on the way back all on my own, though I bumped into a mate so slowed for a bit of a chat and the last 2km started to get tricky but I sucked it up.
So, the day after a race I would’ve normally slouched around all morning and then dragged myself out for a slog in the afternoon, instead I ended up doing a pretty quick (for me!) 20.5km (there was a bit of a diversion on the way out for a loo break, hence the trip back was a bit shorter) in 1:48.
Hmmm, sometimes I need to be dragged out of my comfort zone to realise that I am capable of more than I have let myself believe.
Now, half marathon next weekend, time for a spot of tapering, feeling quietly confident now.