The interesting thing about this run was my time. I was so happy to stay ahead of the 60 minute marker that a few times I turned around to make sure I couldn't see it coming over the horizon. The markers are great to keep you in check so you know exactly where you are.
I also ran this race with headphones in - and I found my Nike App kind of threw me off, as when I'd see a sign saying '5K' it would be 5 to 15s later the Nike App would tell me my distance/pace. I found myself waiting for her to start sprouting on at me. The advantage of having it though meant that I could keep my pace in check so I knew if I could slow down a little without compromising my overall time.
This run was so different though to my first 10K four weeks ago for a number of reasons!
- My head was on my finishing time rather than just finishing the race. I knew I could do it which changed the dynamics of this race, I felt more competitive and found myself overtaking people to keep my pace. The race was on open roads so we were running in the hard shoulder - which didn't give much room to overtake. When I did overtake someone, I made sure I didn't let them re-overtake me.
- I knew the route - I even passed my home house and my grandparents were out in the garden waving me on. My grandfather took two photos which were blurry and of my back but bless... He also took great pride in telling me "Jeez you were very far back!"... FFFFF YOU Grandfather... I'd like to see you try :p
- I was running this race for myself! No one was around this weekend and I knew there would be no one waiting at the finish line for me. My parents were working, my sister was away and my other half was gone into town (totally fair enough, I wouldn't hang around for anyone for an hour!).
Another influencing factor of this race and something which fuelled me on was the fact it was a race on home-turf. At the start line, I saw someone in front of me who was a complete dick to me when we were in school together many moons ago. So instead of being the bigger man now (not literally), I took great pleasure in passing him out. I also checked his finishing time and he finished after me so that made me happy :)
As I was coming up around the half-way mark, I saw another guy I was in school with. You know, one of those smarmy good-looking fucks who always took every opportunity to make you feel bad. Well, I can now tell you that his hair has thinned out so much I barely recognised him... It was definitely him (I checked afterwards). Anyway, I kept my eyes on him and took great pleasure in overtaking him. I hope he recognised me - I hope he felt something thinking 'Shit - There's John Q from School... Thinner and Faster than me'... but that's probably giving him more brain-credit than he is worth.
I'm not a bitter person... Promise!
Anyway. As I turned the corner and was on the home stretch up to the finish line, there was my other half waving me on from the side-line. It's things like that that spur me on - Knowing that I have the support from the people around me who care that matters most! I crossed the finish line in 54m 30s. Me...
I'm now looking forward to my next 10K race despite having nothing planned. And yes, while I'll never be a Course Record setter, I'm going to keep this up - I'm absolutely loving it - and that is the biggest surprise/gift of all.