If I have got any serious intentions of doing the Langdale Marathon in September it might be an idea to start doing some road running, so with this in mind I drove out to Keswick on Wednesday night to tackle a tough 6.4 mile road race.
What a wake up call it turned out to be!!
The race set off and I was soon reminded just how hard road racing is. I clicked onto the second group of runners ( the first group were the elite) and ran with them for a couple of miles, but I soon found myself struggling to hold on to them and decided to back of a bit. I knew this was a mistake as I always find it harder to run alone in a race, but on this occasion I had no choice, I was done in..... at mile 3!!!
To make matters worse for me, my right shoe lace had come undone, but I knew that if I stopped to tie it back up I would end up jogging back, so I carried on, and to be honest it did not slow me down at all.
Sure enough, other runners started picking me off and at one stage I was in with another group of 3 for a while, but I think they got sick of my shoe lace whipping their ankles and sped off.
With a mile to go I was more then happy to hold position and get to the finish line without trying to over take any one or let anyone else over take me. The runner in front of me was a good 50 yards ahead and he had glanced back to me, just to confirm that I was spent, I was.
With about 200 yards to go I was suddenly aware off someone galloping up on my right hand side. There was nothing else for it... not seen since Appleby school sports day in 1983..... the Stoddy kick.... and with that I was off, holding off the challenger (for 21st position) and charging past the poor guy in front who, by the time he realised what was going on it was too late to react.
I crossed the finish line and said to myself NEVER AGAIN.
Within a few minutes though the pain is forgotten and im catching up with some folk I aint seen in a while. They is also a strong presence of Eden runners, amongst them is Alan Marshall, who organises a lot of the winter training for the club, I make a mental note that I must attend more this winter!
I said before the race to Steve Angus that I would be happy with 6min 18 sec miles and that is what I achieved with my time been 40mins 50 secs. This I am becoming to realise is my opptimum speed limt, as when I look back at some of my PBs they are;
Half Marathon (keswick) 83mins
10 miles (Derwentwater) 63 mins
Both are 6min 18sec miles. (roughly)
So, for me to run faster times means I have to start doing things like intervals, fartleks, and more road running and I dont think I can be bothered with all that malakee , so I will contiue doing my long runs on the fells at the weekends and try and do a couple of road runs during the week.
Getting back to the Langdale Marathon, its going to be tough, less then 8 wks away and I have a 2 wk beach holiday to fit in. Last night showed me how far behind I am.
I am going to try and do Rydel round fell race next Thursday and if I get round without the groin playing up its Borrowdale the week after.