Pos: 9th Time: 19:00

Hastings Parkrun was a must on my graduation weekend. After the ceremony yesterday I felt very ready to cap off the trip with a parkrun PB today.

Unfortunately, things just didn’t turn out that way. Don’t get me wrong, 18:59 is a fast time, but I feel like I really didn’t push as much as I could.

So we’ve been staying in the Hastings Travelodge over the last two nights which is about the same distance as my student house to the start line. In turn, I walked there before doing a mile warm up.

Obviously, it was good to see everyone again, it was a real mix of people too – some from my old work and other faces from cross country, etc. However, I didn’t actually see Pete, my old coach, until just after we started. Nonetheless, we had a catch up at the finish.

Right, onto the race now, and I ran the first kilometer fairly sensibly. I didn’t get dragged off at the start and did a 3:44.

But the second kilometre is what killed me. 4:04. I’m not sure why I slowed down that much, I wasn’t tired or anything. Maybe it was because the was a slight wind or maybe it was down to the fact everyone slowed down around me, but I didn’t feel like I was running that much slower.

For the rest of the race I was playing catch up. On my YouTube video I said I’d like to do a sub 18:30 but once I realised that wasn’t going to happen the plan switched to a sub-19.

On the top promenade I took two people, then I finished with a 3:39 although the final stretch did seem to go on forever.

Like I said, 19 minutes is a decent time for me, five months or so ago I would’ve been buzzing with that. However, today, although it was great to speak to everyone again and obviously that was the main point of coming, I left disappointed.

I think it’s just the fact I know I could’ve pushed it so much more. I did a 19:06 in my five mile tempo the other day and I’m almost certain I’ve pushed harder in recent sessions.

It’s one of those things though, I can up the mileage all I want and work to exhaust on in training but that doesn’t mean I can just turn up on the day of a race and get a PB.

Maybe I was scared of entering that state where you feel uncomfortable running. Even on that last kilometre I felt smooth and my form felt good but I just didn’t tap into the next gear. I was just too relaxed and this certainly can’t happen at Cardiff 10K.

My “easy” runs this week have been slightly faster than usual, so maybe that was a factor. Am I tiring myself mentally?

Either way, I’ve got to take positives from today. My form felt good the whole time and I wasn’t knackered at the end. On the other hand, I really need to tap into another level. There’s still plenty of time to go until the big day but perhaps another race is what I need to remind myself of what it takes to test myself.