Well, I am blown away with how this run went. I thought my pace wasn’t there. I thought it would be hard to hold a 9 minute mile for the 7.5 miles I was running. But no. (and in case the title of this blog post didn’t give it away – I came out of it with two PRs!).
The HBF Run for a Reason holds 3 events, a half marathon, a 12km, and a 4km. As you know, I chose the 12km. I decided I didn’t want to train for another half marathon, but I did want to push myself to go a little faster. The 12km was ideal, as it is an automatic PR- I’ve never run a 12km before. I was almost going to drop to the 4km run, my friend talked me out of it (quite easily) and I didn’t think I had done much serious speedwork to get me a 4km PR.
The 12km run started at 8am – a perfect time. Having jet lag, I was awake at 3am to around 4:30am, fell asleep for a little, then woke at 5am and decided to get up. I did go to bed super early the night before, so I felt really refreshed – sometimes jet lag is the best!! I ate some breakfast, a couple of cups of coffee and was ready to brave the cold trek into the city. My mum (who walked the 4km) and I caught the train to get into the city. HBF really puts on a great event, free public transport, and the race start is right by the city’s station – no long walks to the start line! We left my mum’s house at 7am and were in the city, at the start, at 7:30am. What a perfect start!
The race is actually a little bit of a blur. It’s also the only race that I have run that only has kilometer markers and no mile markers (obviously – as we are in Australia!). It didn’t bother me, but I was also trying not to look at my watch too much, so I can’t really recall how I was feeling at certain points.. But let’s try.
The start was crowded, and everyone rushed off – they were speedy! I was trying to go at my pace, my game plan: stick with 9min/miles for the first half, and try to speed up from there. Well, it didn’t really work out that way. I was getting pulled along by the crowd, and going a little faster than I would have liked. I tried to run easy, and noticed my watch was averaging around a 8:50min/mile for the first kilometer. I decided to try and stick with this pace, as it felt incredibly good (probably due to the cold weather). The first mile ticked past, I looked at my watch and it said I was at a 8:49min/mile. Ok, I can do that – let’s try to stick with that pace.
I think kilometers 3- 4 went through the Graham Farmer Tunnel – which was pretty cool running on a freeway, going through the tunnel – though it got very warm! I was excited to see the light at the end of the tunnel – I knew cooler temperatures would be out there! I didn’t look at my watch for miles 2 and 3 – I just ran by feel, trying to stay comfortable. Mile 4 I glanced down and got a complete shock – 8:23min/mile. I think there was a bit of a downhill during that mile! I felt good, and just kept trying to run easy. Mile 6 is where I decided that with 2 and a half miles to go I could try to push a little. However, the last two and a half miles is also where there where quite a few congested areas. I think the 12km group had started coming up on some of the half marathon group, so it got a little crazy, and also some turns and tight areas.
Counting down, and knowing I only had one mile to go I tried to push on, not going all out, but definitely going harder that what was comfortable for me. We ended up running into Gloucester Park – where Perth holds the horse trotting – so we ran on the course where the horses run! That is a first!
I crossed the finish line to see 1:04:xx. And to be honest, I was a little disappointed that it wasn’t 1:03 – but I knew I had run a great race. And, as it turns out my watch told me I ran it under 1:04!
I also mentioned two PR’s that I had broken – the other one? Well, that’s my 10km! I managed to knock nearly a minute off that time! My question is do I count it? I mean, it isn’t a stand alone PR… so does it count?