It is pretty evident that I haven’t been very active on my blog recently. My excuse was originally exams (including my first GCSE) but now that it is mid-way through the holidays, I thought I should really get back into it…particularly as I have so much to talk about!! I am very happy to report that I have in fact had the most successful competing season I have ever had so far!
As you may know, this season, I started racing the steeplechase and I absolutely fell in love with it. The brutality of the event, added excitement and extra training required really suits me and I have managed to improve greatly throughout the season. I thought I would go through all my races since my last blog as briefly as possible, so I might as well get into to it.
12th/13th May – Kent Championships
Unfortunately, the county champs was my worst race of the season. Only my second ever steeple race, I went out waaay to hard, desperate for a medal. I struggled through, hanging onto the top group until the last lap and I could barely get over the barriers. After jogging the last 400m I collapsed into tears after finishing 4th in 5:48. Not my finest moment to say the least. The next morning, I ran the 1500m in 5:07 which I was decently happy with but it certainly wasn’t what I wanted out of the county champs.
20th May – SAL: Battersea
Things went a fair bit better the following week when I ran 5:35 in the SAL for second. I really enjoyed this race and was happy to run a big PB and make progress.
21st May – Blackheath and Bromley Open
This was a huge shock but somehow, the day after my steeplechase PB, I managed to run my first sub 5 1500m (4:57)! I was absolutely delighted! Definitely a much more successful two races than the previous weekend!
27th May – YDL: Bromley
This one was probably the second worst. Simply never got into the race and struggled badly later on. Only managed 5:43 (1500sc).
2nd June – BMC PB Classic
This was a bit of a step up. I loved the set up of the BMC and really enjoyed the event. I ran a PB of 5:32 with a strong last lap. I also managed to purchase a beautiful pair of steeplechase spikes for a discounted price (thank you sportsweardealsofficial!!)
10th June – Kent School’s Championships
The breakthrough I had been waiting for. I ran confidently for the first time in a strong field and managed a fast last lap, beating people I had never come anyway near before! I was the 3rd under 17 out of competitors from London, Middlesex, Hampshire and Kent (obviously) which I was very happy with but, as I was a guest, I annoyingly didn’t get a medal.
My time was 5:23, a massive PB and, more excitingly, a time quick enough to gain English School’s selection!!!! Unfortunately, this was more frustrating as I knew that I would not be able to attend the event (which has been my biggest goal to go to since I started running) as it was the weekend I would return from my holiday. The. Most. Annoying. Thing.
23rd June – SAL: Bromley
This was my first 2000sc and I really enjoyed it! Having five water jumps was particularly good for me and allowed me to get in some good practice. I ran from the front for the first time ever in a club race and secured a good victory (although not with some stress and a few sneaky looks behind – to my coaches annoyance). My time of 7:41 also put me 3rd in the country which is pretty cool!
1st July – YDL: Eton
Probably my favourite race so far! After staying at the track all day in the boiling hot weather, by the time it got to 4:30, I wasn’t sure what to expect. To my surprise, I found myself pretty high up in the field and decided to try to stick with some of the girls who usually beat me. With a lap to go, I felt strong and kicked (despite a dodgy wrong-leg hurdle) and realised that I could actually catch the girl in the lead! Going into the last barrier, I was just catching her. After a final sprint finish I managed second, (0.1s behind the winner) and another PB of 5:21!
16th July – Bromley Open (1500m)
After a few weeks of no races and no track running due to holiday and an injury picked up on said holiday, this race wasn’t great. I mean, 5:04 wasn’t awful but it was badly paced and pretty painful. Anyway, it was enough to get me back into it.
25th July – Watford Open
Back to Watford a year on and back with another PB. In a very tight race consisting of 16 runners with times between 4:51 and 4:58, it was quite a challenge to find space. I got badly boxed in with 200m to go which prevented me from kicking. Even so, I managed 4:55 so still a PB but I felt that I had a lot more to give and could definitely build on that.
29th July – YDL: Allianz Park
Yesterday’s YDL was very different from the last one! The weather was absolutely awful: wind, rain…anything you could want for a steeple. I was very excited but nervous as I hadn’t raced a steeple in over a month. I settled in third for the first lap and a half before pulling away with another girl, ending up on her outside, battling the wind. Unfortunately, after a dodgy water jump and clipping a barrier, I couldn’t manage to take the win and could only managed second in 5:26. I am slightly disappointed but I suppose the time was decent considering the bad conditions. The match also secured our place in the National YDL Final!
Anyway, that is a recap of all my recent races. As I mentioned, I was absolutely gutted to be selected for English School’s for London and the Southern Inter Counties for Kent but had to miss both for my holiday. It has been very difficult for me to deal with this disappointment, particularly with English School’s as I have been desperate to go ever since I started running. Nevertheless, it was nice to be selected and, to make up for it, I’m competing in the Nationals at the end of August.
My next race will be the South of England Athletics Championships (1500sc as usual). I am very excited and am hoping for a high standard race and a good PB as I definitely think I’m fit enough.
In between times, I have the Full Potential Athletics Camp next week which I am very excited for! Let me know if you are also going!
Anyway, I hope you enjoyed this long overdue blog post and I hope everyone’s track season is going well.
Thanks for reading,