After 4 weeks of virtually no running, due to the ankle, it was time to hit the races again. Not a long one, but a flat out mile is not easy. Find out how the comeback run went…
After a grand total of 12km’s of running in the last 5 weeks there were no expectations going in to the Amba City of London Mile. This was a race that Mr Smith did last year in a fraction over 6:51, so that was always going to be the target.
All of the recent training has been re-focused on cross training and cycling for the Ride London 100 in 6 weeks’ time.
Mr Smith was mentally as prepared as he could be and even the trains were running on time. The morning was glorious and perfect for running. No excuses for a bad run other than the ankle not coping.
Mr Smith arrived at St Pauls in plenty of time to pick up the number, and check out the start and finish area. Always good to do so that there are no surprises.
With the number pinned on it was time for the final preparations. Cup of tea and a quick catch up with Tom, the coach, who was doing the commentary at the finish line.
The bag was dropped off and a quick trip to the loo later, it was time to assemble for Wave 4. Note on the loos, do not bother queuing for the portaloo’s, the ones in One New Change were basically empty.
With wave 4 assembled we walked towards the start in the shadow of St Paul’s Cathedral. Another pause while wave 3 started and we assembled at the start line. We had 10 minutes to wait, but getting towards the front meant that Mr Smith was close enough to the front to not get stuck behind any slow runners.
With a minute to go we moved forward to the exact start and the focus came. 5, 4, 3, 2, 1 and bang, they were off. Mr Smith got up to speed and was happy with how it was going as he was conscious not to go out too hard. This did mean that a few people went past him as they all blasted off, but he knew not to go to quick. The first part of the run was a little down hill and with what breeze there was. The pace was good and the heart rate was under control. Yes it was high, but this is to be expected when you are basically flat out for a mile.
These were the roads that Mr Smith used to walk down all the time when working in the city, so he knew where he was going. Going down past the Bank of England and turning left he knew it was about half way and a quick check on the watch revealed a much better pace than expected.
It was here that Mr Smith remained under control and stopped himself for pushing on too much. Turning back in the direction of the finish it was time to be going back up the slope and in to the wind, but the energy was still good and the ankle fine. Was it time to push? Not just yet, keep the pace as high and stable as possible.
Passing the 400m to go it was time to really start to pick the pace up and head for home. Lifting the pace to under 3:50 km pace Mr Smith was running down the right hand side of the road in clear air and was giving all he had through to the finish.
Running past the band and seeing the finish line the final spurt was on. Hitting about 3:30km pace Mr Smith passed Tom doing the commentary and across the line.
What was the time? 6:14! Wow thought Mr Smith, 40 seconds quicker than last year and 16 seconds under the target for the year of 6:30. Very pleased. There had been a moment where Mr Smith had thought that 6 minutes may have been on the cards, but he will save that until next year. The pace of 3:52 per km was by far the fastest to date. The official time camein at 6:13.3, officially 38 seconds quicker than last year.
The great thing about the City of London Mile is that the waves are relatively small so the runs are not too crowded so you can get a pretty clean run in.
After collecting the bling and catching up with Tom it was time to cheer home a couple of other Genius Joggers, both of them doing great runs. Nice to meet both Ian and Liz at the end.
So it was time for the off and to round off a good morning the trains even ran on time! The only downside was that by now the ankle was sore again and having to run through the station did show that it is still not right, but it has now been iced and feels back to its normal self