Must have been having one of those weeks where nothing is easy, the runs seem that bit more difficult, and you have to put that little bit more effort in to try and just treadwater.
I had an awful session on the slagheaps (Bedewell Park) on Tuesday. It was boiling hot, and the flies were out in force. I must have ate at least a dozen on the first rep. The session was 4 x 1400m, but after the first two I felt like a boil-in-the-bag rice, so I skipped the third and then did the fourth.
Rep 1 - 1.4k, 5:37 (6:27 pace)
Rep 2 - 1.4k, 5:38 (6:29 pace)
Rep 3 - 1.4k, 6:06 (7:01 pace)
I was practically jogging on the last lap round, so it's no wonder it was way slower than the first two.
On Wednesday I was going to do Elswick Cup, but I'd felt so crap on the Tuesday I thought it was a waste of effort - haven't felt like that for ages about a race, so it's probably for the best that I sat with my feet up instead.
Thursday - In the absence of Evil Coach Darth Jim, we were left to our own devices, and opted for a 3k time trial. I finished in around 13:40 (didn't have my watch on), not too unhappy with that, but afterwards I went for one of Frankie's mega warm-downs, which was a big mistake, as his "trip round the block" turned into a two and a bit mile route march round Primrose and the Don (with more swarms of flies), at pretty much the same pace as I'd done the time trial in :S
Saturday - I was hoping to get to a parkrun after work, but cut things very tight, so Andy very kindly offered to drive me straight from work to Chester le Street, to do the Riverside parkrun. We got there with minutes to spare, so I had no time to do a warm up. As per usual I'd decided not to wear my watch, and just run how I felt, which for this run was to try and hold on to Kim Mathews from Elswick for as long as possible. I managed the first lap, before she came steaming past, but I never let her out of my sight, and did my best to keep the distance between us as short as possible.
The low point of the run was a guy pushing a buggy, running past me by the river. I didn't have enough speed in my legs to keep with his pace. My only thought was that he must be bloody good when he's not pushing a kid round.
I could hear quite a few people shouting for someone called Ruth behind me, and she managed to catch up as the start of the last lap, but I pressed on, and aimed to keep ahead for as long as possible. I held her off right through to the finish. The support on the way round is great - many thanks to everyone who cheered me on!
Didn't realise it till the results came up later, that I had a new seasons best of 22:15 (my second fastest parkrun ever - after a 22:14 on the Moor last July). Over the moon, as I didn't really feel that great while I was running. Things are looking good for sub 22 this year.
Well done to the Birtley girls on a splendid 1 2 3 4 5 finish, and to Kim, who managed 21:59 - if only I'd managed to hang on! Also a big well done to Mick on a new parkrun pb, and to Michelle on finishing her first ever parkrun!
Full results here: Riverside parkrun
I must apologise to Andy for making him hang around for 15 mins in the carpark while I chatted at the finish, especially since he had to get off to play golf, though I did pay him off with a chocolate biscuit on the course later on ;)