April Showers

Training this week has been entirely run based, in preparation for up-coming track and road races. Tuesdays track session was a novelty for me, consisting of only 2 x 600m with 10 minutes jog / rest in-between reps. The first 600m, saw me go through 400m at 60secs, then slow to 94 seconds for the rep. The second was more evenly paced with all 200m at 32 seconds, producing a 96 second rep. The lung burn for this session was incredible, but hopefully this sort of anaerobic threshold work will make my legs super quick… Circuits on Wednesday, more strides on Thursday (10 x 100m) and then a taper for the rest of the week ready for my race on Sunday.

Saturday we went to Lincolnshire, for Zack’s 2/3/4 crit race. The weather was incredible, with changeable wind, rain and even hail… we watched the Women and Cat 4 men’s race first, with the (7) women setting off around 10 seconds behind the men, but soon being lapped with only one of them strong enough to keep with the Cat 4’s, for a 15 point race it seemed a bit ridiculous, with every woman rider getting points. Zack’s race looked fast, and he struggled (probably from over-racing recently), before pulling out after a crash happened in front of him, caused by the gobstopper sized hail that pelted the peloton. Lessons learned we went home, with me nursing a five day headache that doesn’t seem to be shifting.

On Sunday, after watching the VLM on the TV and dosing up on neurofen, I took part in the S.E. Poland v South Humberside/East Midlands v Guest Select team Athletics meet at Costello Stadium in Hull. On arriving, with Zack, we found lots of little flags with the Union Jack on one side and Polish colours on the other, all signs in English and Polish and an impressive set up of officials organising/ timing events. I was a bit nervous… especially after reading (on the NoE website) that ‘The Polish team has confirmed that they have A WUG Champion, 4 Olympian female athlete and several athletes who have medalled at European and World Junior Championships and 7 athletes who are already preselected for their National Olympic Team. The event will have full automatic timing and ADR for the field events. Also in anticipation of a possible British record and indeed a potential WR in the Women’s Hammer event from Anna Wlodarczyk the officials who have offered their services so far are of the highest calibre.’

Unfortunately, and despite the excellent organisation, the calibre of competition was not exceptional. After sending an email to one of the organisers, I was advised that the only event I could compete in was the 3k, which was fair enough considering I have no pb’s at any track events. Conditions on the track were good, with only intermittent showers and a bit of a home strait headwind to contend with. However only 3 women lined up for my 3000m, and as soon as we set off I realised it was going to be a lonely race. I don’t really enjoy time trial situations, and even though I wanted a pb my heart wasn’t in it. I pootled round, lapping the other girls one of whom dropped out, finishing in 9.43.37 (way off my road pb of 9.29.52). Disappointed, and wishing I had been entered for the 800m (won in 2.15.71, a time which I think I could have challenged). We left Hull and headed home.

Feeling guilty I headed out for a steady 3miles in the April showers and Zack and I went over to Brits for a tasty pizza tea and a race report from the Cheshire Classic (Women’s National Series) race. It sounded like a good race, with a steep hill, and Brit reported that she came around 24th, with the win taken deservedly by the ever aggressive Sarah Storey, who formed a successful break with Molly Weaver (2nd) and Corrine Hall won the bunch (uphill) sprint for 3rd spot.

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