Time: 1:26:48 Place 232 M50-54 12th on Nett Times
Over the last few years I feel I have developed a good understanding of how my training will convert into a race situation.
After Doomben a month ago where I ran 1:29:36 I went into the Gold Coast race confident I could take some time off that mark. I thought for a start that the many hair pin turns were worth 20 seconds and the conditions that day were humid so I thought another 20 seconds for that. So an equivalent performance would get me under 1:29. So how much could I improve in 4 weeks? I thought that around a minute was going to be about what I could pull out.
As I have said before I plucked some target times out of the air at the start of the year for the three Halfs and put them up on the wall at work. Basically it was the first in 4:20 pace (1:31), then 4:15 ( 1:29:48) and then 4:10 (1:27:40) for the Gold Coast. I hit the first two so I thought even though it may be a stretch I would target the 4:10 pace and see if I could hang on at the end.
I set the alarm to get up at 3:25 am but woke at 2:10 am and couldn't get back to sleep. So this left me plenty of time to get there. A 75 minute drive and I arrived at the race precinct at 5:10 am. In next to no time it was off to line up with the other 8,000 starters. I got a position not too far from the front. Together at the start it was surprisingly warm but once we got running it became somewhat chillier and the hands were cold for the first 5ks.
I settled quickly into a pace just a few seconds below target pace but was worried I was going out too quickly so from about 5 to 10 k slowed so I was more in line with my target pace. When I got to 10k in 41:25 with a 15 second buffer I had an inkling this was going to be a good day as I was feeling very fresh.
After the turn around I felt I could up the pace and stepped it up to 4:05. Even though I didn't find this too taxing I didn't want to go too early either. But the Ks went by, I was constantly overtaking people and I was still feeling strong. When I got to 17k and had 17 minutes to get under 1:27 I knew a sub 1:27 was in the bag.
Of the three Halfs I have done I must say this was the easiest. The Twilight was just too warm and humid and the lack of water stops made the last couple of Ks really tough. At Doomben, I slowed quite a bit in the last couple of Ks but here I was able to keep it going all the way to the finish.
As you can imagine I very happy with the time yet I know I can improve on that with a bit more targeting for a specific race. I had no taper at all for this race. Unfortunately I have no plan to do anymore Halfs this year and now I can focus on the Brisbane Marathon. If only they would reveal the Course I would be a lot more comfortable about it.