Bitter Sweet (Lemon in the honey) – the SVHC Relays

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I am totally awaiting the pelters for this post. Will I deserve them? Maybe. Are you all being harsh? Maybe. I guess a bit of both. Will I stop dancing around it and get on with it? Aye OK then. The only dancing about these parts is Tommy to the GBX. It’s not pretty. So it’s only 2 weeks since my last post, but I have tried hard to train hard. Running and cross training. Spin classes. Circuits. Training I have found REALLY tough and have felt heavier rather than improving and I know it will take time. Did manage a 21.30 5k as part of a training run, but half of that was downhill. But happy with the effort I am putting in if not the lack of results. I know it take time but hear me out. Today I ran the SVHC relays at Strathclyde Park, about 6k, and I did better than expected. Am I delighted? Oh aye. Am I scunnered? Oh aye. Don’t tell me that any of you that enjoy a hobby wouldn’t be the same when you put the foot on the gas and it isn’t there, and you see people from various clubs that you were beating with ease last year beating you by a number of minutes. It’s difficult, and I know why it’s happening, but you still get the feeling that after a slog getting to where I had got to that I won’t be able to get there again. I’m a hop, skip and jump away from being a V45 so time isn’t on my side.

So back to today. The SVHC Relays at Strathclyde. Once round the loch. Man it was windy. Benny and John had got the teams perfect on merit and on performances today and I was in the C team with Robert, Tommy and Kevin. I had a wee jog about, feeling slightly niggly but nothing worrying. Said a few hellos to many people, good to see all these runners in real life again rather just on Facebook or through this blog. Robert came in on leg 1 in 37th in the men’s race, with both women and men running together, just ahead of John from the D team but Tommy had an excellent run on leg 2 to maintain the position but build a good lead over Peter in the D team. This was fine for me as I could run with no fear or pressure. The last words I heard before I went off were from coach John who had just finished. “Just run steady”. Wise words. And that’s how it was to be. I started off probably too fast but soon calmed it down. I could see a female Killie runner about 100 ahead so went after her.

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This was the story of my run, after everyone I went past I probably had some one else a few hundred meters ahead, so gave me something to chase without going mad. Passed a few of the female competitors including Cambuslang which is always nice and rare. The legs and back felt fine, but the extra weight I’m carrying was annoying me. The wind was tough as well. It was swirling about more than a guitar riff by Johnny Marr. As we got to what I always feel is the toughest part of the course I caught up with a group containing runners from Ayr, Clydesdale and Bella, so sheltered behind until we reached the hill where I pushed past (feeling strangely OK on the hill) and into an unexpected crazy headwind. Everything got tired here. Only 1 1/2k to go and I was treading water. I just put the head on and tried to fight. Reminded myself how much I had missed this (Hah!) and got to the turn at the end of the loch where there was great encouragement from Bella’s Paul Clawson (genuinely thank you, it gave me a lift where I was struggling). Round the bend and it’s probably 400 meters to the finish. Unfortunately at this point the 4th leg Cambuslang victory runner Robert Gilroy came around the corner at the same time. I let him past then decided to chase him. I have no idea why.

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It got me past another 2 runners, and I still finished about 50 meters behind him 🙂 What a plum. I had moved up from 37th to 32nd and also passed about 5 female teams I think, so all good. I had run the first 5k in 21 minutes exactly so that was progress. So I know I am making inroads but also know it will take months and months to get where I was and this will not be a PB year, and I know I was spoiled last year. So that’s bitter sweet. I am delighted to have got back in there again, but I am impatient, jealous, and most of all honest, doesn’t make me a bad person. Anyway I am away now to pack my bag for spin in the morning, I may be off the pace, but at least I am on the right road, and I’m not for going off it…… 🙂 Later blogpeeps.

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Thanks Ewen Cameron, Stephen Duffy and Kenny Phillips for the pics.

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