I think the best way to describe my running is as a Jack of all Trades. I will run anything from 800m up to a half marathon, and on any surface (track, road, trail, XC). In the past few weeks I have run the 1500m, a 5km race (3 if you count parkruns), 10.5km mountain race and an 800m track race. The track can be quite intimidating, but it’s also a lot of fun. I think I like the track best because it gets me out of my comfort zone. It’s easy to hide in the pack if you’re running a road race, but the track leaves you much more exposed.
You can only grow if you leave your comfort zone.
This year was my first time running the 1500m Classic, and I had no clue what I was in for. Most other meets that I’ve attended (including state championships) normally attract a small crowd of spectators, and there are normally a few events to watch. The classic crowd is quite big, and is focused on one thing only – the track.
I arrived at the start of the top primary school races, and watched the runners being introduced at the finish line before jogging around to the start. The announcer knew a random fact about every runner out there. When my race was finally called to the marshalling area, the announcer asked me what my best running achievement is. I told him that my best achievement is that I show up, and give it a go – but he thought I was joking! I was actually half telling the truth, I’ve won a couple small road races around the place but I’m under no illusions about my talent (or lack of). But I work hard, and I love to race.
One of the girls that I was racing against told me she thought we’d be a similar speed, and she was right. The other 2 girls were a fair bit quicker, so it turned into 2 races of pairs. I led my little race for the first 3 laps, but couldn’t quite hold on. I still managed to make it around in 5:33, which is a new PB. A pretty good start to the season
The highlight of the night was watching the 3 races that followed mine – the open men’s race and the 2 classics. The open men’s race was quite amusing to watch – a front runner developed a huge lead, only to be chased down on the final lap. The poor bloke looked like he was hurting!
The women’s classic was won by the favourite, and she seemed to be in control for the majority of the race. The men’s classic was a closer race, with a few runners still in with a chance until 200m to go. The eventual winner has now won the event an insane 4 consecutive times, and ended up crossing the line with a decisive lead. It’s amazing how important the final 15om is in shorter races like this.
This event is a great rust buster, and watching the other races has given me extra motivation to keep working hard. I don’t expect I’ll ever be upgraded to the classic, but maybe next year I’ll be more competitive in the open. There’s always something to work towards!