Petestack Blog

25 June 2011

Post-race excuses

Filed under: Running — admin @ 7:30 pm

So… with a week already slipping by since the big race to mull things over and post-mortems apparently all the rage (well, John Kynaston’s got two big blog posts of them!), I thought I’d try one too. But there’s really not that much to say apart from the one thing I was reluctant to highlight too strongly before, with me now thinking my performance was impacted (and possibly significantly) by the cold/infection I picked up the week before the race and still haven’t fully shaken off yet. So my failure to sustain my easy pace for longer, quite severe Ba Bridge/Glen Nevis nosebleeds (not things that normally afflict my running) and continuing blocked(ish) nose/rough throat this week all point to a compromised performance and I don’t think it’s clutching at straws to say so. How much it was affected is harder to say, but instinct tells me that, having maintained 5mph average on a much hotter day last year to round about Inveroran/Forest Lodge before fading with dying quads, I should have been able to sustain 12-minute miling in conditions that suited me better (and off a more measured start) to Glencoe or even Kinlochleven this time round. For sure, the splits will show me to have run more evenly than most with an almost unwavering 12-minute pace to Inversnaid and my race time of 20:44:26 equating to a 13:06 average over the full course… but Inversnaid is barely half the distance I should have been able to keep up my starting pace and, between you, me and the internet, I thought (despite my public target remaining sub-20) I was going to duck under 19:30 (there, I’ve told you all now)!

So perhaps I should be considering another go if I was ‘robbed’? But no… because, while staking all those months of effort on peaking for a specific day to see it so compromised by random chance might be the way of competitive athletes the world over, I’m afraid it’s just not terribly appealing to me and if anything strengthens my resolve not to keep coming back and banging my head off a potential brick wall. And, while I should maybe have gone much faster this year, it’s only numbers in the end and I’ve already found the acceptance over 2010/11 to deal with that. So let’s just leave it there for now, with a wee footnote to add that, after a lazy week when I’ve been resting the inflamed tendon (probably not, in only really flaring up Sunday/Monday, a significant factor in my performance) and eating too much, I’m starting to get out again with a walk over the school cross-country course (c.2 miles) yesterday to check for storm damage and 20-mile cycle (= low impact with the tendon still not quite fit for running over rough ground) round the Loch this afternoon. :-)

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