I nearly called this post Bonking but wasn’t quite sure what sort of person that would attract. Plus it isn’t entirely accurate since I didn’t bonk (when your body shuts down mid-race), I just ran really really badly, so not the same thing at all.
Snake Lane 10 is a flat(ish) road race near York. It represents the furthest I have ever driven to race (so far, off to Cambridge in a few weeks!) but with an 11am start it wasn’t too indecent a departure time. I have been unbearably tired over the last week or so and was not in good sorts at all, but had at least been sensible and tapered a bit in the run up to the event so thought I would be ok. Hmmm not so much. Trotting over the timing mats I did what I usually do at the beginning of a race and set off running at a pace I felt comfortable. I usually do the first 100-200m like this and then glance at my Garmin to check how I’m doing. In a normal world this generally reads somewhere between 8.15 and 8.30 min mile pace so I was completely thrown when I looked and it was reading 9.45 min mile pace and it felt too fast already. I knew in that moment it would be a looooooong morning.
The course was indeed mostly flat and through some pretty little villages. The miles ticked away but my legs were like lead and I didn’t ever settle into a rhythm and just ended up getting cross with the people around me (never a good sign). I got freaked out by a sign warning about frogs at mile 3 or so, I hate frogs more than pretty much anything but fortunately it must not be frog season as there were none in evidence and believe me I looked pretty closely. Worse was yet to come though as my relief at getting to the 5 mile point rapidly turned into dismay as I realised the previous 5 miles had been wind assisted as BAM we turned the corner straight into a howling headwind. It didn’t let up for one minute between there and the finish, and rather enjoyably we were also running downwind of a sewage farm, so got lungfuls of crappy air (literally) with every breath. I just had to plod and keep going as best I can but with a busy road and the only big hill of the race in the last 2 miles I was a bit buffered and fed up by the time the finish came along. But at least I’d made it, albeit with almost a 10 minute personal worst time to my name. Goodies were a nice mug, water and a banana, and J also picked up some spot prize gloves which he was very pleased about.
We didn’t hang around long after the race, partly as it was freezing and partly because I had to drop J off at the station in York. I eventually got home at about 4.30pm and gratefully put my pyjamas on straight away. Several episodes of Masterchef South Africa (verdict: better than the UK version but not a patch on the Australian version) and a large bowl of macaroni cheese later I was still utterly shattered so climbed into bed at just gone 9pm and slept until my alarm went off at 0630. This week therefore holds the joy of a GP appointment as I’m starting to become concerned that my thyroid has kicked off again as I definitely don’t feel right – I’m torn between hoping it is that (as at least I know how to deal with it but it means long term issues) and hoping it isn’t (I definitely don’t want to have it zapped but otherwise I have to try and discover where my mojo has gone). I just hope I find it before the Cambridge half (9th March)…