Barham Insurance Handicap

The Stawell Amateur Athletics Club Season has officially started. It started last week (6th April), but I was unable to go as I was in Geelong prepping for the half marathon.

It was 5km and through my home turf – the Stawell Ironbarks.

I love the Ironbarks.  So many different tracks and trails.  It’s also deceptively hilly.  Hills are my friend, although some days I don’t like them.  I will always prefer hills over doing speedwork any day.

I was given a handicap of 9:55 mins.

When we were told to go, I went off, hard and fast.

I did stupidly however forget to start my watch. I thought I pressed the start button, but I must not have pressed it correctly.  It wasn’t until I had just gotten past the 1km mark that I realised this as I went to check my pace, only to discover it wasn’t going. What a silly billy move that was!  Needless to say, I started it, and I would fix the ‘mapping’ of it when I got home.  I would also have to wait until the race was over to find out my exact time. But that didn’t phase me.

At about the 2km mark I could see the other runners in front of me. It wasn’t until the 3km however that I passed 4 of them.  I knew there was at least one runner ahead of me.  I knew if I could pass Gary, then coming in first was a total possibility.

We were now going uphill.  It’s not much of a hill, but it’s gradual, and I was feeling it, my heart rate was up high, my breathing heavy. I also felt like I popped a blister (it was later I discovered it was a tiny rock), but I just told myself it’s nothing, yeah it hurt, but I would deal.

I looked over my shoulder.  I could see Selina.  She was still behind me.  I could see someone else, Susie.  I thought just keep her behind me.  I rounded the corner and was on the home stretch.  But all uphill.  I knew I didn’t have the leg power to dive up that hill like Susie, and she flew past me.  But then again you’d expect that from a woman that does Marathons and Ironmans, Susie is a machine!

While I didn’t come in 1st, it was a respectable 2nd place for me in a time of 23:52.

My fastest 5km was back in August and it was 23:43, so I was very close to a new personal best.

In time I will crack that sub-22 5k goal.

saac 5km barham ins handicap

That’s me 2nd, in the purple shorts. Seeing this photo makes me realise I really need to work on my running technique.  It’s on the list, as is the new half marathon training plan to get me a sub 1h45min time.

To see full race photos, please go to the SAAC Facebook page here.

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