The clock does not lie – and the only way to really see where you are on the racing -snake stakes is to put yourself on a start line and give it yer best.
Because when the flag drops, the bullsh** stops, as we used to say in our triathlon heyday.
So on the day before London Marathon last weekend I found myself huffing and puffing along with a few other soggy folks round my local 10km road race. Now I can’t remember the last time I did 1Okm on the road – and one that wasn’t part of a triathlon.
I can remember zipping round Warwick University campus sometime in the late 1980s in 33mins and change – but between then and now?
Not so clear.
And, y’know, I thought I was in OK shape – I mean, nothing scary-fast but okayyyy-ish at least.
‘How long will it take you then?’ asks Mrs Mouncey.
‘Well – I’ll cry if it’s anything over 39mins.’ I said.
And the boys nearly left home ‘cos they had Dad down for the win.
Recognising that I had some work to do managing the expectations of my offspring, I was just thankful I had two positive stats in which there remained a hint of hope:
No-one came past me.
I managed to pass a few folks of my own.
So if it was process over outcome there was some stuff to cheer about.
Except it’s a short race – so it wasn’t.
And I never ever thought I register a time that slow for that distance.
Fortunately the day after proved one of significantly better cheer as marathon news of (real name) Badr (see previous post) came through:
First there was the 4 minute documentary film the BBC had made of him last week when we had all gathered in Burnley for a final trouble-shoot session.
Then the texts:
He’s passed halfway!
Then: He’s finished!