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Sunday, March 27, 2011

Race Recap: Springbank Time Trial

Yesterday saw some of the London Runner Distance Club partake in a time trial at Springbank Park. I awoke to a weather report of -16C and blazing sun, wishing I could simply lay in the sun by the window all day instead of asking my legs and lungs to rise to the occasion.  I arrived at Springbank Park for 10am and I was surprised at just how warm it actually was. That sun made it feel more like -5C and there was little to no wind. How pleasant!

We ran through our warmup, 20 minutes easy and tacked on a 5 minute pickup at about 4:15/km. My legs responded well to the pick up, but I wasn't sure how much faster I could handle. The month of March has been my heaviest month of killage to date, and though I've had some great workouts, I just didn't feel race sharp. After some dynamic warm up drills we laid down a few strides and coach Steve laid out the loop for us.

A few minutes later and we were off.  I had never actually run this loop at the park yet, having missed the last time trial in January due to injury.  The loop kicks off with a massive hill climb, a steep descent, a mostly flat section and caps off with a 1.2km steady climb towards the start/finish of the loop.  This was not an easy circuit as it is constantly rolling and the first hill we climb is enough to mentally drain you for the remainder of the loop.  Have a look at the elevation chart below...

My km laps were not the more consistent, but my first km was only 2 seconds faster than my overall pace. Overall, I think I did a great job of pacing myself and it sure helped to have Nathan by my side to make sure I kept it honest throughout.

When all was said and done I crossed the finish line in 16:45 (an average pace of 3:37/km) and I felt a burning in my lungs that I have not felt in some time. I pretty much collapsed on the road, thankfully no cars came by.  This effort translates to an 18 minute 5km on this course, and if It were more of a flat course I'd expect I could shave 20 seconds off.  We'll see how that goes in a few weeks when I tackle the Downtown 5k in London on April 22nd!

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