The week didn’t start well at all…
Tuesday was my normally scheduled speedwork session at Cannon Hill Park. After an extended warm-up, I went into the first 800m rep and everything felt normal. Going into the second rep, I felt faster but I also felt flat at the same time like I didn’t have the mojo to continue. I called it quits after that and went for my warm-down. I can only put the odd sensation down to two things; one is that I was still recovering from my hard long run on Sunday. The second reason is that due to the strong breeze, I had cooled down too much after my warm-up stretches. Anyway, here’s the Garmin data for the interval session of shame.
After Tuesday’s shocker I decided to do a cut down session on Thursday, being mindful that I should be tapering slightly for the Cardiff 10k on Sunday. I headed out to Edgbaston Reservoir for 2 laps to make 5k. I felt good and covered the distance at a decent pace for a mid-week run. Here’s the data for the run.
The wheels started to come off on Friday morning when I woke up with a sore throat, realising that I had seriously overcooked it. I wasn’t bunged up but I wasn’t taking any chances so I popped into Boots on the way to work and picked up some Lockets and some Day Nurse capsules.
Andy and Nigel at Tredegar Park, Newport Parkrun
I had been looking forward to Saturday’s Parkrun for a while because I had arranged to meet Nigel from Lliswerry Runners at Newport Parkrun. Nigel and I have been exchanging a number of emails over the last few months ever since he got in touch with me via this very blog about the Caerphilly 10k route. Nigel is also the man responsible for a segment on Marathon Talk previously where Martin and Tom discussed the various types of PB out there.
Morgan joined me on Saturday morning and came along for Newport Parkrun despite having completed the crazy 7 mile Llanhennock Hill route the day before. We had an easy 1 mile warm-up before rejoining the masses at the start line. I wasn’t looking to go all out, treating it as a 10k race pace run for the Cardiff 10k. I do enjoy the Newport route, but I rarely run it because I like to use Cardiff Parkrun as measurement of my ability. I felt steady and fresh for the entire run, finishing in 20:33; I’m more than confident that I can nail sub-20 at Newport if I needed to. The time and pace I ran at confirmed to me that I would be OK at the Cardiff 10k the next day. Morgan finished in a very commendable 24:30ish time and still looked pretty fresh, so he could most likely do 24:00 minutes if he pushed it. My Garmin data for Newport Parkrun can be found here.
We caught up with Nigel after the run and went for a coffee at the Tredegar House café. Here, he introduced me to some of the Newport Parkrun team where Morgan and I were able to spectate how the results are processed and uploaded, along with the sorting of the finish tokens. It was all fascinating stuff and I now have even more respect for the efforts that the Parkrun organisers put in each week to give us all a free and timed 5k run. We had a great chat with Nigel, discussing injuries and various races we had participated in and had coming up. He’ll be at the Cardiff Half Marathon next month so hopefully I can arrange to meet up with him before or after in some way.
Sunday finally came and rather than bore you with an abridged version of my Cardiff 10k report, I’ll send you to the full fat edition instead. It was a great race and one that I know I’ll look back on fondly for years to come.