Monday, January 29, 2007

The Truncheon of Glory

This may look like any old truncheon from a pound shop. In fact, you might say that if you'd bought it from a pound shop you'd been overcharged.

And you might be right.

But this, my friends, is the Truncheon of Glory. I should have turned the photo the other way, but I'm so excited about the Truncheon of Glory I just want to get this posted.

I was undecided about running tonight, after speedwork on Friday, 15 miles on Saturday and cross country on Sunday. Maybe it was time for a day off. But if I don't run with my club I don't get runs during the week, and it was only a short one tonight. A short fast one, but a short one.

The time trial. Last time I did this I did OK, but not amazingly. But since then I've been doing speedwork. And boy did I pay off.

I was set off fairly near the start (it's a staggered, handicap, start to give everyone a roughly equal chance of winning). There were five people in front of me, and maybe ten behind. At the first main turn I overtook the first person (who had admittedly taken a wrong turn right at the start). During the long straight drag uphill I caught the two who set off first, and then closed in on two new girls who were unknown quantities. I had the advantage here. I knew how much more hill there was, and I knew I could push past them right at my limit because there was a nice downhill straight after.

So I got round them, and I was at the front. This is unknown territory for me. I felt good because I'd got past the point where the faster runners started overtaking me the time before, but I didn't know how close they were behind me. If they're close enough they overtake you with surprising speed. I knew it was pretty much downhill to the end, so I pushed the pace a little more. And more. I can't remember the last time I pushed myself so hard, but as I got closer and closer to the finish I was determined to get over that line first. It may be my one and only chance of winning a race, even if it's not a straight race.

The last bit was uphill, over cobbles. I could hear one of the new girls gaining a bit on me (having recovered from the hill where I overtook them I think they'd picked up some speed again). One last push and I was over the line.

I won a race!!! And the truncheon was the prize.

It may be cheap, and it may be plastic, but I've never won anything for running before, so for now it will take pride of place.

(For the record, I was nearly a minute faster than when I did the route last time - it's just under 3 miles so that's 20 seconds per mile shaved off, on a day when I should have been way below my best after some hard runs. Speedwork really does work!)

I will now go and bask in the glory.


Blogger Shauna said...

a TRUNCHEON!!! that is such a wacky trophy but so very very cool. well done :) you could hang it over your desk at work so people will know not to mess with you!

12:09 AM  
Blogger Sushi Penguin said...

Way to go! :D

12:40 AM  

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