The long and the short of it

Going from Portugal's 600km+ race to a 6.4km race (with two weeks of sofa-parked cake eating in between) was never likely to result in a fantasticly speedy performance. Not that at any stage of my life have I ever been a speed-demon racing snake anyway, unlike many of the track whippets who normally turn up to cross country races, seeing them as an 'endurance' event for the winter. But I thought I'd enter the Irvine cross country for the chat and to help make up a Westie wimmen's team.

It was nice to see so many different clubs there, including people I used to run with at uni. But at the same time, it all seemed a bit competitive and not like the style of races I'm used to. It even started with a proper gun and people were leaning forwards on the line, like sprinters. What was going on?? I tried to give it my best lung-busting shot and set off with the rest of them, trying to at least keep up with Pauline and Helen. Just as I thought I was going to explode, I sneaked a look at my watch to realise I'd only been going for 6min. A lifetime later, 8 minutes. By 15min I decided I couldn't take the burning lungs and legs and sick feeling any longer and I'd drop back to my 'happy' plodding pace, to give myself a wee break. That's where people started to overtake me I think. Normally I'm the person overtaking towards the end of the longer races so this was a whole new experience for me and I hadn't a clue how to pace it. One of the good things about cross country is all the support round the lines. Wearing my Westies top, even coaches from other clubs were shouting encouragement (or telling me to stop slacking) so I managed to drag myself out of the slacker plodding pace and get back up to the 'wanting to spew' pace for the last 5 minutes. Finally (thank the stars) I finished the race in 34min and crossed the line, vowing it was harder than Portugal and I'd never do another cross country again!

3hrs later and I was on the training making plans to do a 5km at the Glasgow park run next week, in an effort to get faster. I'm planning to build up to a sub-1hr42 half marathon... or at least that's the plan...

Back to 'normal' running for me today with a short and lovely hill run up East Lomond on the way home from Kirsty and Dan's party. The sun was shining and it reminded me why I love Scoltand so much.


kate said…
belated congratulations on the portugal race, amazing achievement! surely anything less than 24hrs is going to seem a ridiculous fast pace ;)

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