One of my targets for the year was to get under 40 minutes for a 10k. I've managed it every year up to now but hey I'm not getting any faster in my old age, so it was never going to be an easy target to achieve. Well, the good (in fact better than that - the great) news is that I did it today!!!! I finished the 'Run With The Wind' 10k at Strathaven in 39.54. It may have taken me 305 days of the year to get there, but I made it at last, in what was almost certainly my last realistic attempt of the year.
It wasn't easy. The first half is mainly downhill, and I was well ahead of 4 minute per km schedule as I passed the 4k mark. However as we turned the corner there was a strong wind right into our faces, as well as a long climb back up the hill, and suddenly sub 40 didn't look in the bag at all - it was clearly going to be bloody hard work to achieve it. I passed through the 8km mark in something like 32.06, which was just outside 40 minute pace, and knew I was going to have to push myself to the limit over the last 2k. So push myself to the limit I did. I was still slightly outside schedule at 9km, but thought that the last km was mainly downhill and ran as fast as I could go towards the school. I knew it would be close and indeed it was, particularly with the small uphill just before the finish, but I was thrilled to bits to come over the line with 4 seconds to spare. 39.57 gun time and 39.54 chip time - woo hoo!!! I did my usual coughing and spluttering - DQ just ignored me, as he's seen it all before, but some of the other marshalls looked a bit concerned - and then headed to the school for a lovely cup of soup and sandwich.
I thought it was a very enjoyable, friendly event, which was very well organised by Strathaven Striders. Well done to Lee and everyone else involved. I'll definitely be back :)