|A gorgeous morning for a parkrun!|
Soon after that it was onto the only real formality of the morning - the run briefing! John was the Run Director, and it was his first time too! The day ran very smoothly from a parkunner/non-volunteer perspective...
|First-time Run Director John.|
...which was impressive once I found out it was a Course Record Attendance! 355 parkrunners and no glitches does indicate that Albert parkrun is a well-oiled machine!
|It was only a little bit busy...|
I paid for that fartlek-like start once we passed half-way and ran into the northerly that was blowing that day. I'm not used to running into headwinds, and while I managed to keep pace for the first 500m or so I could not sustain it. Headwinds were also something I noticed affected my effort during the Sussan 10km, and may be something I need to regularly run in if I choose to take the October half-marathon (as part of the Melbourne Marathon Festival) seriously.
As I approached Lakeside Stadium I thought about ramping up the pace a bit to see if I could salvage anything from the woeful 4th kilometre. I had started the run hoping to run comfortably under 26 minutes, but I knew that the 4th kilometre had cost me time. Just getting to 26:00 was going to require some effort in the final section of the run! I try to run by feel, and although I occasionally check the watch to see how I'm doing - I missed the 4th-km split on my watch on Saturday. I was wearing the Garmin Forerunner 610, so it vibrated but I didn't want to look because I knew it was BAAAAAD.
However, the closer I got to Lakeside, the more I thought about what a stupid idea it was to ramp up the speed. I also made a mental note that my frame of mind (chasing a time) clearly meant I was ready to stop "just plodding" during the week, and that I ought to start some speedwork again. :) I will likely not be feeling so "smiley face" about this come tomorrow evening, which is when I will likely be doing this speedwork.
As we passed Lakeside, someone came up on my shoulder and told me, "500m to go!" At this stage I had progressed from my four-step breathing sequence and calm three-step breathing sequence to a laboured three-step breathing sequence. If you hear me at this stage, it's fairly obvious that I'm struggling and not exactly feeling wonderful.
|Is that me pushing off more from my big toe and not so much from the outside of my foot?!?!|
Image from the Albert parkrun Facebook page, but not sure exactly who the photographer was!
Finally, I could see the rowing shed near the finish line and I knew I could commit to some stronger strides. I got closer to the two ladies I'd been sitting behind for the past 2km or so, tried to cheer them on to ramp up their speed and headed for a fast finish with "500m to go!" guy. He crossed the line first, and I hit "lap" on my watch as I finished. I had planned to go back for the others in the Meetup group and run their final hundred-metres or so with them to get me some extra kays, but ended up sitting on the grass for a bit to catch my breath instead.
I did end up getting up and finding Luke and Abigail. I was wondering if my legs were up for another fast finish, to encourage a strong finish from Luke. I can't remember how they felt, so it must not have been too bad - that's what you get for talking when running!
|The longest scanning queue I've been in since I was at St Peters parkrun. Was nice to end up with a finish token greater than 100 despite running well under sub-30. Again, something that hasn't happened to me in a while!|
I didn't know exactly what time I had run at the time until later, as I was walking back to the car and adding up the seconds of the km-splits (5:09, 5:06, 5:06, 5:20, 5:06 - and 0:15). 26:02 by my watch, officially 26:04. At least it's nice to know that my "run by feel" system is working!