Wednesday 16 September 2015

Cardiff 10k and Lake Vyrnwy Half

A week ago I ran in the Cardiff 10k where I was representing the North of England in an Inter Countries race.  After a busy few days including travelling to and from Anglesey helping Dan out with setting up the tracking for the Ring O' Fire endurance race, my cat needing an overnight stop at the vets to remove what turned out to be a tick, plus probably my hardest training week since I've returned from injury, I arrived in Cardiff not quite as fresh as I would usually like to be for a race!  

For once I adopted a relaxed attitude of what will be will be!  For anyone that know's me well you will know how unusual that is for me as I'm normally full of nerves and putting pressure on myself.  I started near to the front along with the other girls to get a good start.  I didn't let myself start too fast though and didn't get carried away with some of the girls who probably went off a bit too quick.  About 2km in I went past a couple of girls who had gone off way too fast.  I then settled in and actually felt good.  From 5km onwards I picked up the pace and managed to pass about 5 or 6 girls.  I was really pleased to finish in what turned out to be my second fastest 10k ever!  I'm so happy that my fitness has returned and I'm up to speed quicker than I thought.

Monday morning I felt tired but managed a slow morning plod and what felt like an even slower evening plod!  By Tuesday's long run I actually felt quite good.  Thursday was a hard 5k paced track session where I just about made my target times but it was very hard going.  So not an easy training week then into Lake Vyrnwy Half Marathon on the Sunday.

I went to this race really wanting more than anything to win but not sure how I was going to feel after yet another hard week of training.  Before the race someone asked what time I was hoping for and I replied that I'd like to get close to my pb (77.03).  I wasn't really sure that was possible.  I wasn't too fussed about my time as I'd rather win today with a slow time than not win but get a pb.  Of course, both would be nice but I'm not greedy!

The race started and I went off fairly steady and controlled.  My thinking was that if there were any fast girls they would think it was slow and go past me then I would be able to track them!  As it was no one went past me so I picked it up to the pace I felt good with.  

This is the second time I've done this race (was 2nd last year) and I do love this course.  Its slightly uphill for the first mile, you get to the dam and turn left and there are lots of spectators there (I think they put on a bus for them).  You then run around the lake although you don't get many views as there are lots of trees!  Its fairly quiet but every so often there are some spectators cheering you on which is great.  I ran with a man for about 5k but time checked and although I felt really comfortable the pace was just slightly quicker than I was happy with so I had to let him go.  From this point I pretty much ran on my own, occasionally picking off another runner.  

2 men went past me in the last 5/6k and if it had been another girl I could definitely have found something but I was starting to get tightness in my lower back and into my glutes.  I didn't feel at the time it was worth the effort and potential damage to muscle to stay with them.  A full loop of the lake done and back to the dam and the cheering was amazing. I felt great being in 1st place with 1 mile to go which was mostly down hill.  

I didn't look at my watch at this point but in hind site I wish I had as I might have found a bit extra to get a possible pb.  As it was I finished in 1st which was my aim and in a time that was just 9s outside of my pb!  I was so happy.  Another good race after hard training.  

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