Sunday, 16 December 2007

First Race

87.5 kilos. Today was round 3 of the Winter Series 10k races at St Johns. Its a handicaped race where the slowest starts out first.

Before the start, I became reaquainted with lots of old friends: John Cannell, Steve Taylor, Steve Partington, Chris Cale, Mick Holgate and others. I was also introduced to a lot of new folk incuding fellow parish blogger Michael George.

While deciding on my starting time (handicap) for the race, there were a lot of sharp sucks of air through gritted teeth from Steve Tayor. He eventually decided that I would finish around 70mins which meant I would start some 17minutes after the first starters.

I found it very hard to judge how fast to go at the start. There were three and a half laps to do so I did a very cautious first lap being paranoid I would run out of steam half way through. After two and a half laps, I turned round and saw a horde of folk behind. Quite scary. I felt good so I decided to get up on my toes and walk hard for the last lap. This is where people start to meet up as the handicaps come into play.

The finish is a series of bends so you cannot see very far. I knew it was close and I was passing a lot of slightly slower walkers on the way in. When the finish was in sight, I could see four more up ahead. I chased down and passed another two folk. It seems that I can still sprint fairly fast over a hundred yards or so. Thats technique rather than fitness so I felt it was cheating a little over folk who are clearly fitter than me!

Literally a yard before the finish line, the silent Chris Cale came along side me and actually dipped for the line. He was flying!

Steve had been right, I did very close to 70mins, in fact I did 69:12. Those 48 seconds made a lot of difference actually as it seemed that most people came streaming in in a huge bunch over the following minute or so.

Afterwards we had a buffet and a raffle to raise money to send kids off the Island to compete. Having spend time off the Island to compete as a kid myself, I thought this was a super gesture. Many thanks to the organisers for a great day!

I think the main thing holding me back at the moment is my weight (i won't even mention the fitness). I am around 8 kilos over weight which is like carring two gallons of around with you as you race. Xmas coming up so I cannot see much coming off before the next race; which is on the 6th of January.

I will, of course, be there!


Blackberry said...

Boy doing good!...but, tell me honestly...aren't you ever tempted to start running? ;o)

Rich said...

No for a number of reasons. When you walk, you get into a rhythm. Its actually more comfortable than running - well, its walking after all. Also, there is no way I can run the Parish as its 86 miles. Sport is all about specificity so I need to get better at walking and running won't help that.