After getting a surprise (not)parkrun PB a few weeks ago, I hadn’t quite managed to equal my time again, but I was consistently running 5k in under 23 minutes.
On Saturday 10th April, my husband said he would pace me to a new PB. This isn’t something we’ve ever tried before. But I know he can run my PB pace very comfortably.
We set off fast and within seconds I’d lost the radio on my phone. This is annoying as I always listen to the radio when I run. I find it a good distraction and motivation. Normally, I would just try and refresh it as I ran, but clearly that slows me down a bit. When I was going for a PB, that wasn’t an option, so I just ran without the radio.
I did a good job of keeping up with my husband and knew I was VERY close when I got to the finish. Remarkably, I’d run it in the exact same time as my previous (not)parkrun PB – 22:18. I was certain that if my radio hadn’t gone off, I would have had that extra second to beat the PB.
So the following week, my husband offered to pace me again.
We started off really fast – for the first 300metres or so my pace was 6:09/ mile. We then slowed down very slightly, but we were still running fast. And I could feel it!
I normally feel it a bit on parkrun/ (not)parkrun, but I was surprised how much I could feel it. I was only going a few seconds faster! I thought I was going to finish about 30 seconds faster than my usual time and I was half killing myself for it. It’s remarkable what a difference those few seconds of pace can make to the way you feel.
I was already thinking I wasn’t going to bother pushing myself that hard again next week. But I didn’t slow down, I kept up with my husband and I kept running.
At the bottom of the road, I realised I had two minutes to make it to the finish line to equal my PB. That felt very do-able. But I had overestimated how long it takes me to get to the finish line from the bottom of the road. Apparently it takes a lot less than two minutes!
I finished in just 21:49.
That’s a massive 29 seconds faster than the (not)parkrun PB I’d set a few weeks ago! It’s also 34 seconds faster than my actual parkrun PB, set in 2017. No wonder I felt rough!
But the good news is that I recovered really quickly, as I always do. So actually I might try to go that fast again. If I keep going that fast for the next few weeks, I will be absolutely flying by the time parkrun returns on 5th June.
My husband did a great job of pacing. He deliberately set off fast, then realised we were well ahead and he just needed to stick with 7 minutes/ mile for me to beat my PB. In the end we apparently ran the majority of it at 6:59/ mile. He knew from pretty early on that I was on for a PB, but didn’t realise that it was going to be quite such a big PB!
I’m very happy with my new (not)parkrun PB, not to mention my very nice age grading of 74.26%.