Twice during my short weekend I have hesitated before writing my blog, firstly on Saturday after parkrun and I abstained in favour of waiting until after Sunday's race - the Dewsbury 10k and combining the two. After said race I hesitated again and wished I had gone with the first attempt and then I could have omitted Sunday altogether!
Why? Well, certainly not because I had a bad race, nor because I didn't get a PB, how to put it into words might have been the reason.
I really do seem to be experiencing all manor of enlightening events recently. I have been tail runner, sweeper whatever term fits best, at Bradford parkrun for quite some time now, a role which I thoroughly enjoy and that is partly due to the enjoyment I know Dave takes from it. It is also due to the sense of being part of the support network that is 'parkrun' and we are, each and everyone of us who turn up week in week out, part of it, whether as a volunteer or a runner, without all of us there would be no parkrun, that's special. This week though, in stark contrast to last week, I found myself chatting to a very small boy and his Dad, he can't have been much more than 6 or 7 and he chatted away in between a little running and walking about Dave and why one of his ears was down and one was up and various other things. After lap two he decided he didn't want to do any more so his dad asked a lady if he could stay with her and off he ran, well I didn't have a hope of staying anywhere near him, so I merrily set off on the third lap with Dave. It was very odd running into the finish area with no accomplice, but hey the job was done I knew there were no other runners behind me and so I still signalled the end of the run. I hadn't previously given any thought to what would happen in the event that the person I was behind decided not to finish and there being no visible person in front to catch up but of course I well and truly would be last!
Sunday's race was a real test of ones fitness or lack of it! Most runners will quite likely have set off with thoughts of a PB lurking in their minds on the pancake flat, out and back town centre course. The outcome for a lot of people could, though, have been very different even if they were in rude health, no injuries etc. Personally I felt at times like I had a bungee rope attached to the back of me! The half way turnaround point seemed to take an age to reach. One saving grace was the sight of the front (very fast and fit!) runners on their way back. It really was a sight to behold seeing the sheer determination on their faces as they fought against their competitors and the wind! It's also great to be able to cheer on fellow club runners and friends in both directions. Those who have run an out-and-back race will know what I mean when I say I got a renewed energy as I ran round the cones to start my homeward journey. It was still difficult to fight against the wind, possible due to the lay out of the buildings, the wind seemed to be coming at us from all directions. At 8k I rested on my laurels, 'not far to go now' I heard myself say, with that I heard a familiar voice, looked to the side of me and there was fellow ERRers Gill and Dawn. I have known for some time that both my club mates have improved markedly since taking part in various training courses and undertaking marathon training. They both sailed past me - a light bulb flicked on - I'm now in last place (ERR ladies!). As any self respecting runner would do, I clicked up a gear and caught back up with them. Battle commenced! It was very much cat and mouse. Right up to the finish as they both fought to leave me behind. Alas, the times came out at Gill 58:14, Dawn 58:18 and me 58:19. Last was where I stayed.............. I can still hear it playing in my ears.....