If not the time! What a wazzock I am.
I arose from my slumber and made my preparations, starting with a nice cup of real coffee for that race day fix. I got my kit up together. I felt good. The birds sang, the - I'll stop there because it was actually raining and fairly grey and horrible out but I still felt good about my chances. I sat down, relaxed and easy, ate breakfast. Beauty, it was all going so well. Had a lucky poo - too much information, I'll grant - and off I set in plenty of time to arrive at the race ahead of noon. The only slight problem with the plan - and some might consider this a fairly major problem - was that the race actually started at 11 - doh. I repeat, what a wazzock. So what started out as perfect planning and preparation, feeling good, ready to go, on my marks, get set - turned into a total cock up. An eleven out of ten on the wazzock scale of cock ups. So anyway, having arrived late, and with all the runners well and truly underway I decided to run anyway - so off I set, only about 36 minutes late.
It's hard to really push hard when your not in a race. I find I can never quite apply myself to training as I can to a race. The nip and tuck, the cut and thrust - enough already - of a race always makes me perform better - stop it. Still, it was almost like a race. I tried to put in race effort but running solo in the wet and wind is hard. I felt strong but knew the hour mark I set last year - 59:34 - would be hard to beat outside of a race. I kept looking at my watch as motivation, always trying to push on but it was mentally tough to run on that racing limit without actually feeling like your in a race.
Coming down into the final half mile on the road I managed to pick off the last place runner - technically, I was last, but I wasn't really in the race. So there it is I finished not last by one, after giving the entire field a 36 minute head start. I'll say it again, what a wazzock.
But I'm very pleased with my time of 1hr and 3s - just 29s outside last years time - but it actually makes my feel even more annoyed at what would surely have been a few minutes inside that had I actually been in a race.
And on a final note, I just wonder which is going to be the third race I miss - for surely, as is written in the prophecy - haven't heard much from the prophecy of late - as eggs is eggs - they come in three's...
Thought for the day: When preparing for a race, apart from the normal preparations, make sure you bloody well CHECK THE TIME!