Tuesday, 2 May 2017

Race Report: Pinnacles Classic

The dam the course runs around
This race report’s going to be short and sweet as I don’t have much time, and it goes something like this…

So two weeks ago I was fairly sick with the man flu, aka a cold, and didn’t do much training all week. In the week leading up to the race I had a few college and uni requirements that meant I couldn’t do the full week of training as specified by the plan, but the stuff I did do I was really happy with. And if you’ve been following me along on Strava you would’ve seen that I’ve been having a niggling quad problem. But after seeing the physio and getting some dry needling done they felt fine on race day, and I went into the race feeling confident. I had done the course before as a training run so I knew what I was in for, 18(ish) hills in 18km with halfway being the highest point of the run. However, as part of the marathon training I’ve been doing I haven’t been doing much climbing. Maybe one hill repeats session a week and bit of easy running around Mt Cootha, but certainly not to the extent that I was doing early in the year. Hence going into the race I was looking for at least a podium and hopefully even a first. Hahaha well....
Elevation profile of the run
I started off quick, taking the lead with no-one coming along with me. The idea I had since I was feeling good was take the lead from the beginning and try and hold it, taking the climbs relatively easy and smashing the downhills as fast as possible. What I didn’t take into consideration is just how unfit I am in relation to climbing. I held onto the lead until about 3km where 2nd and 3rd overtook me on one of the climbs, and then about a km later I fell into 5th where again I got overtaken on a climb, it made me feel like I was going backwards! I didn’t lose any ground on them on the downhills, but every time there was a climb I slipped further and further back. By 8km my calves were cooked and my race was all but over. By 9km I lost sight of 4th and it felt like every climb I did in the second half of the course lost me another place. And to top it all off my peroneal tendonitis came back with vengeance at about 12km in, and as I’m writing this (a few hours after the race) my foot is hurting like crazy. All this road running I’ve been doing made me think it might be gone because it hasn’t flared up in months, but unfortunately not. I ended up finishing in 8th in a time of 1.33.06 which was about 10 minutes slower than I had wanted. Oh well, in the scheme of things not finishing on the podium at a training race such as this isn’t the end of the world, but still a bit disappointing. Especially since at no point in the race did I feel aerobically tired, I could’ve done the ‘talk test’ no problems. It was pretty much my legs that let me down. I’ve learned my lesson, don’t expect big things from a race that you’re not specifically training for. 
Happy to see the finish line! Photo courtesy of Laura from The Trail Co
Next up on my calendar is the Brisbane Trail Marathon in 4 weeks time for a bit of fun and to try out a few different strategies in preparation for the Gold Coast Marathon. Until then this novice is out.


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