I wondered how I would feel last night after my record breaking run at the Norman Woodcock 5 miler in Gosforth. It’s a flat three lapper around the race course and it was a cool and still day. My plan was to carve a sub-30 performance, but secretly I was resigned to creeping a few seconds over the half an hour.With a few clubmates in attendance and a field of around 130, I felt surprisingly good during the first lap. Morpeth’s Chris Waugh crept up onto my shoulder toward the middle of the lap and then pulled away smoothly during the second lap. Instead of chasing him, I focused on trying to catch the first lady runner, which proved a good test, but chiefly I tried to maintain an even running pace and technique right to the end. Crossing the line I had shaved off 20 seconds from my 2007 PB. Not the fastest 29:22 in the world at v50 but I was elated and, knowing how to party, treated myself and the missus to tea and cake. I also collected a £10 voucher from the Elswick Harriers event at the prize giving.
Not surprisingly, I felt fine last night, spending it dancing away into the wee hours at a 50th Birthday. The DJ was the lad who had done my 50th doo, and he was obliging enough to play many of the tunes I had requested at my bash. It’s not every day you spend a continuous 35 minutes on the dance floor. We even had a Cure and Simple Minds doubler. Jim Kerr on the dancefloor, indeed.Felt fine this morning. Made carrot and vegetable soup first thing which I think is great for a pre-race meal. I tossed the veg into the pan. Aunt Aggie was busy painting her cast iron miniature Crimean war heroes on the table. I suggested she'd be more comfortable on a chair. She looked over and said that I really ought to make the onions sweat first, so I sat them in the corner of the kitchen and gave them a maths test. The addition of yellow split peas was a masterstroke. It won’t be long before I’m on masterchef.
The young un’ had said she was intending to have a run-out at the local Cross Country event at Monkton, South Shields at lunchtime and I thought I might have a run out as well. I drove the jalope southward to where it seemed like the whole of the North East running community had turned out. A huge 550 turned out in the men’s field. It meant that the course was well churned up before I got going, setting off in the medium pack (it’s a handicap event, see.) It was pretty funky galloping past some of the slower guys at the back, but the juvenile bravado soon wore off and, after 20 minutes things were slowing, and progress was slower than waiting for a filling at the dentists. Finished mid table. I was sure glad I’d had a big bowl of soup before setting off from the house. Those split peas did the job.Getting back into the house, I had to have a pre-bath shower to get rid of the clag. It seems we’ve now also got a collection of small Bavarian Grenadiers on the mantelpiece. Photos of the Woodcock road race 2013 and the womens cross country at Jarrow are up in the Gallery.