About once or twice a year you can expect to experience a day when everything goes according to plan - super flat course, no wind, right temperature, feeling fit, etc.
Well today wasn't one of them!
The Askern "10" is held on an undulating course, although how a one mile climb can be classed as undulating is beyond me. The slight wind and humid conditions didn't help either. I'd also been feeling a bit "off" all week. Well that's all the excuses, here's what happened.
A crowd of about 800 runners started. 1st mile, slightly downhill took 5:48. I'd expected to do it in about 5:30, oh dear!
2nd & 3rd miles averaged 6:13 pace. Still on schedule for 61 minutes. Heart rate was hovering around 154, rather than the 157/8 I'd been aiming for.
4th & 5th miles were mostly uphill and I reached the half way point in 31:36. At this stage I wasn't really racing, having accepted that I was having an off day and would be lucky even to get a PB. Waved to my clubmate Terry who was about 60 seconds ahead of me on the other side of the road and who I'd beaten by 60 secs in our last 10k.
6th mile was downhill. This was where the speed sessions helped as I passed several runners. This was my fastest mile of the race done at 5:38 pace, heart rate slightly increased to 156.
Between miles 7 & 8 I simply aimed to catch as many runners as I could. Pace remained pretty constant at about 6:15 pace. HR steady at about 155.
I could still see Terry about 200 yards ahead of me but there was no chance of catching him and I just wanted to get to the finish.
9th & 10th miles averaged 6:08 pace.
Final time 1:2:14, which was a new PB by 4 seconds! Average pace of 6:13. Average HR was a dismal 154, not even 85% MHR!
Waited for Lamby, who finished strongly in a new PB time of 1:31 (well done)
Winner finished in 51 minutes, which I believe was 2 minutes off his PB of 49 minutes.
Unfortunately I've only got 4 weeks to sort myself out before Glasgow - sub 1:19 looks extremely optimistic now.