Smiling in a 10k! only cos it was the first 1km ;-)
This was my recovery run having not stepped foot outside in trainers since the TP100 last Saturday/Sunday. And what better way to see how the body is recovering than to run your local 10k race right! :-)
It was entry on the day so I jogged the 2 miles to the start to warm up, registered, picked up my number and timing chip and was good to go. I ran a PB in this race last year finishing 5th in a time of 36:56. I was quite sure I wouldn't be repeating that performance today but would attack from the get go nevertheless.
It really is just a case of running as hard as you can from the gun and hanging on in there really as there's very little to be gained from being conservative in the early stages. So that's what I did. Hooter went, Hard out, Sharp left (almost taking out the cameraman who thought standing right in the middle of the school exit was a good idea) and quickly took up position in 7th place.
The course is gently undulating along quiet country roads in one big loop. I was going hard and wondered if I had in it me to hold on for 10k at 6 mpm pace. My 1st mile was actually a 5:46 but that was the flattest part of the whole course. The proceeding miles were between 5:55 and 6:24 on the hardest climb at the 5km mark. I had caught and passed 6th place at 3km and was edging closer to 5th all the time whilst looking behind me to see what danger was lurking but there was a comfortable gap between me and those behind.
I worked hard up the longest hill at 5km and down the other side taking the shortest line possible on the corners and caught and passed the 5th place guy. I didn't look back now and just kept going. The final bite is a tough climb in the final 2km up Shenley Hill. I was being caught slowly (see pic) as I approached the hill but if I could hold it together then 5th place could perhaps be mine for a 2nd year in a row! Most unexpected considering last weekend's antics.
Tough climb up Shenley Hill at 8km
I crested the hill and blasted down the other side and into the final km. This part of the course is always unexpectedly hard cos despite being flat the road just seems to stretch on forever as you look out for the school and the finish. I kept checking behind to ensure I didn't let it slip now but 6th place guy was a good distance away.
A final sprint in the last 100m just to make sure of 5th place and I crossed the finish line in 37:49 (6:03 mpm avg pace). I was chuffed to bits with that result. Whilst it was 50 seconds slower than last year the circumstances were quite different this time around. Last year I actually trained for the 10k and had a taper of sorts. This year it was a case of turn up and see if my legs could cope a week after the TP100.
The winner run it in an amazing 33:13. I'm actually surprised that there weren't more runners of this calibre in the race and some faster times. But hey you gotta be in it to win it so I'm not giving away my 5th place. There were 12 other runners from LBAC too out there all of whom ran well and did the club proud. Myself, Chris Norman and Gary Stratford actually took 1st place in the Male Team category for our troubles which was a very nice surprise. And Jo Breslin took second female in 42 minutes and first female in V35. Top running!
Full race results are here - http://www.racetimingsystems.com/public/results.aspx?raceid=2178
So it seems my recovery from the TP100 has gone very well. I really wasn't expecting a run like that today so can now ease myself back in full training again this week after a solid week off. And if all goes well with that then perhaps I should make this part of my new recovery plan and seek out some more 10k's to do the week after SDW100 and NDW100!
Next up though is the Fellsman at the end of April! So let the hill training begin...