Sunday, 2 June 2013

Racing to the Top

I am finally getting around to updating this blog, after I finished uni last week.

8 May – Lee Valley
Unfortunately, the wind was gusting and so meant both of my 100m races were illegal. Illegal in that whilst they appear on The Power of 10 (official results website), the times are not eligible for official PBs, qualification standards or world rankings. I ran satisfying times of 14.14 and 14.16, even more satisfying because my guide runner arrived stupidly late, literally as I was walking to the start line, meaning I was unable to warm up properly. So I knew if I had had the opportunity to prepare, the results would have been even more pleasing.

18 May – Chelmsford
For some reason nobody was at the competition! There was only one other person in my race, which was a little frustrating, although on the bright side the weather conditions were great. I was then stunned and disgusted to discover the clock stopped at 14.97. There was once appoint in my athletics career that I would have been over joyed by this result, only I know in training, I physically don’t run that slowly anymore. Everybody else’s times seemed suspiciously slow too, so I can only conclude that the electronic timing system was broken.

26 May – Leicester
After Chelmsford I came down with a cold, of course the same week my final uni assignment was due, just to make the experience that little bit more traumatic! So prior to racing at my home track in Leicester, I hadn’t trained all week, but I did have the relief of finishing my degree. I was running with mainstream athletes meaning I was in a very fast race and let myself down, as I forgot about my usual strategy and tried to turn my legs over as fast as possible instead, a fatal move! I was somewhat surprised to find I had managed to run a legal PB of 14.29 into a head wind. I knew there was still more in the tank.

1 June – Bedford
On Wednesday my guide runner injured himself. He hoped he would be ok to race yesterday, but turns out it was more serious than first hoped. On Thursday, I trained with my coach as my guide runner, he is an ex international guide runner, so has some experience at least. I have run with him in training the odd time before and usually hate it, yet on Thursday we seemed to get the rhythm going, making him my backup plan for the weekend. Going into yesterday’s race, I honestly had no expectations. Our first 100m felt awful! I drifted away from him, our synchronisation was never synchronised and this made trying to execute the race way more difficult than it should have been. However, something must have gone right, as I smashed my PB with 14.06. This gave me confidence going into the next race and meant we were drawn in the quicker heat giving strong competition. The execution and synchronisation was a million times better the second time around, but before I could celebrate that fact, I had face planted the track! The officials had clumsily left cones just after the finish line in my lane, so whilst I was slowing down I crashed into them and went flying. There was no chance of my guide runner saving me, as he has to pull back before the finish line to ensure I cross first. My knee swelled up quite dramatically and is currently playing host to a giant bruise. Bending my knee and walking is painful. Nevertheless, I can forgive this since I ran 13.93!

13.93! The first time I have broken the 14sec barrier! The second A standard in one day for the World Champs! And excitingly takes me top of the British and European rankings for the first time ever!

Whilst I am now injured, it isn’t too significant as I am going on holiday on Wednesday, so a break from training was already planned. Hopefully when I get back, both me and my guide will be back to full fitness and I look forward to trying to remain consistent for the remainder of the season. It just goes to show hard work does truly pay off though!