I’ve got a few goals for the year so I decided to enter this race last weekend as 5km has always been my ‘fitness test’ kind of distance. It’s my base measure.
So… I have been running approximate once every 10 days or so since November last year. Until today it was all a run/walk type of thing. So I knew I’d do kinda crap, and I exceeded my expectations.
I woke up early so did a lot of foam rolling on my calves. For some reason, no matter how early I get up, I never seem to leave the house when I intend to so as usual with these races, I arrived with about 3 seconds to spare and had to run to the start line. There were so many people here I think this could be the most packed I’ve seen this particular race.
I seeded myself in the middle of the pack. I wasn’t surprised to see quite a few people wearing Five Fingers. I was wearing my TrekSports and thinking how interesting it is that this is no longer abnormal.
When the gun went off I was a little annoyed that everyone around me was moving so slow. I thought maybe all these extra people here today were slow people. This awkward start hurt my stupid ankle a bit but after overtaking a bunch of people I could run properly. My form was great, my legs and feet were relaxed and I was moving close to my former 5k pace – stupid thing to do, really.
After 1km my lack of running caught up with me and I couldn’t maintain my pace. At 1.5km the people I overtook earlier were overtaking me. At 2.5km I was counting down the kms left. At 3km I let myself slow even more. At this point the heat did start to bother me a bit. It was 28 degrees already although it felt more in direct sunlight.
For some reason my triceps were sore. They were the only part of me that was totally relaxed and it felt weird. My legs were moving fine and strength wasn’t an issue there, but I couldn’t keep up with them.
5km suddenly felt like a long distance run and I realised my cardiovascular fitness wasn’t up to scratch. 50km is so much easier than 5km. Every time. I just had to remind myself that after being injured for so long I shouldn’t even have any expectations of my finish time. This race fits in with my goals this year and serves as a test so I know how far off I am from where I want to be.
With 400m to go I picked up the pace, but my Garmin was out quite a bit and it turned out that there was really 600m to go so I had started my kick too early. I was expecting to finish in around 26 mins, although secretly hoping for closer to 25mins. I couldn’t believe the clock when I ran past – I think this was my 2nd slowest 5km ever at 28.18.
Km splits were: 4:56, 5:07, 5:32, 5:57, 5:53
Plus there was 0:52 extra somewhere in there too as my Garmin measured long.
I stuck around to see what the winners in my age group did. And wow are these people getting faster! I have to totally thrash my PBs if I want to get a placing again.
In the past I would usually have a pancake afterwards, and always would have at least enjoyed the smell of them all cooking on the bbq. But since I have not had any sugar this year, the smell of them made me feel nauseous! What is the world coming to?