Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Lands End 10k

September 12, 2010

Basically I could sum up this race with with a simple "It sucked." I didn't have big expectations for this race as it was just a day after returning from a 2 week trip in Hawaii (which was fantastic by the way) so I knew that it wouldn't be a PB day. Still, I thought I could get a respectable performance in, something around the 34 min range seemed reasonable given that my fitness should still be around 33 min. It was not to be.

Conditions were wet, but luckily not too cold. Things started out OK with an opening km of 3:11 which didn't feel too hard. Jim Finlayson, Mark Cryderman, and Craig Odermatt all took off pretty much from the line leaving me running on my own for the entirety of the race. Apparently the course has been about 150m short for years (which might explain why this was the first race where I broke 35 min). This year they decided to extend it to the full 10k, but didn't adjust the km markers to match. This meant that kilometers 1-4 was short while 4-5 was very long (it's an out and back course so the reverse applies). I knew this going in, but still used the markers and a general guide thinking that each of them would only be a couple of seconds off at the most.

The next 3 km would go by at about 3:20 pace which seemed pretty reasonable. Then I hit the "long" kilometre to the turn around and was a shocked by the 3:50 split. Yes, it was somewhat uphill, but that only account for a bit of the 30 second difference. In total lost 50 seconds on this "kilometre" the way out and back - it seemed like much more than 150m extra, but it may have just been my slow running. Things slowly started to unravel on the way back with all my splits over 3:30. It is slightly uphill, but I was struggling. Effort wise, I felt like I was running 3:20's, but reality told me otherwise. I kept Craig in sight, but he was gradually pulling away from me as I suffered to the finish. The one redeeming thing was that there was no one close enough to catch me as Micheal Lord was still about 2 min back.

Looking better than I felt (near the 4km mark). Photo credit: Andrew Pape-Salmon

I mustered a weak kick into the line finishing the miserable day off with a 34:54. This is the slowest I have run since 2007 and very disappointing. I didn't expect a couple weeks off my training schedule to help my performance, but didn't expect such a disaster. Hopefully, a few weeks of solid training will get me back into form and I can have a decent 8k at the Victoria Marathon. Having two bad races back to back is mentally a challenge though as it calls into question what is going wrong. Is it only a lack of proper training or is it something else? It doesn't help that I have been battling a case of plantar fasciitis for the last month or so. I'm getting it treated and taking appropriate action so far it has not greatly impacted my training. However, it is a nuisance and is painful when I push it too far. I've never had a problem with PF before so I'm hopeful that it will not become chronic.

Congrats to Jim who won in 31:54 (although slow by his standards) and Mesissa Ross who came 6th overall in 37:24. James Lander crushed the half in 1:08:13 setting a new course record and my coach Paul O'Callaghan ran to a strong 2nd place in 1:15:52. Sonja continued her marathon prep with a respectable 1:34:14 on a day where she would run 30km total.

10k Results. Half Marathon Results.

Splits: 3:11, 3:19, 3:22, 3:21, 3:50, (17:04 5k) 3:38, 3:32, 3:33, 3:40, 3:27

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