Tuesday, January 27, 2015

On The Podium

Pariah dogs and wandering madmen barking at strangers and speaking in tongues the ebb and flow of tidal fortune electrical changes are charging up the young
It's a far cry from the world we thought we'd inherit,it's a far cry from the way we thought we'd share it you can almost feel the current flowing you can almost see the circuits blowing
One day I feel I'm on top of the world and the next it's falling in on me,I can get back on I can get back on
One day I feel I'm ahead of the wheel and the next it's rolling over me,I can get back on I can get back on

Far Cry-Rush

Irrigardless of it being Nationals,Worlds,Invitational or just a regular race I always have what I call "Podium Mentality" a mindset of making it into the top three,be it a medal,getting your name in the paper or advancing to the next round a top three finish usually brings its own set of rewards and here at Barton Hall at the Hartshorne Memorial Masters Mile since my 07 debut I'd managed three podium finishes in five races,the painful memory of last years 4th place finish and general bad race couple w/ below par preparation had stoked a fire in me for the past 12 months,to use a Jumbo Elliot quote when he coached my hero Eamonn Coghlan"you might beat Coghlan once,but you won't beat him twice".
Unlike last year I came in prepared,granted not firing on all cylinders just yet but Indoor Nationals were still 8 weeks away,if I could improve on last Thursdays 4.52.4 mile at The Armory I'd feel I was moving in the right direcion..

It says something that in my 6th visit in 9 years to Cornell and Ithaca I know the journey from the hotel to Barton Hall like the back of my hand,surfice to say I made the 20 minute walk on auto pilot and arrived at 11.05am w/ enough time to check in and decamp off to the side of the track b4 stretching and getting ready.
After the "culture shock" of my first visit here in 07 when the harsh cold almost took my breath away I've grown used to Ithaca winters and going outside for my warm up and cool down is no longer an issue,as I made my way around the campus for my 1.5 mile warm up I rethought my original pre race plan.
Seeded 4th behind Paul Osland,Mike Nier and Bill Zink I backed off of my original plan to tuck in behind Paul,w/ hindsight I wish I'd stuck to my guns,the outcome may have been different if I had of,instead rather than throw caution to the wind I went w/ the mindset that getting on the podium trumped going all in for a possible win......like I said hindsight is a wonderful thing!!!!

A reasonable reaction to the gun,Mike and Paul got out quick behind the rabbit as I settled into 6th behind Bill Zink,Dan Bonthius and one other runner,I missed my 200m split mainly due to the fact I'd gotten myself trapped on the rail.
It's unlike me to do that I'm usually a lot better at avoiding that but like the mental errors I made last week at The Armory it's still early in the season and I'm working the kinks out of my game.....or at least trying to.
At 300m I tried to swing wide but the two runner behind me had now bunched up on my shoulder and I remained in 6th and stuck on the rail untill we reached 600m.
Finally I swung wide and moved myself into 3rd,for a moment I thought I may've "shown my hand" too soon as both Bill Zink and Dan Bonthuis followed me but I felt full of running and gradually put daylight between myself and them.

There was a sizeable gap between the leaders and myself and at this early stage of my season I'm not sure it's "in my wheelhouse" to run that hard to close that gap but I was gaining ground but truth be told I'd allowed too  real estate in the opening three laps to allow myself to be "in the mix"
I saw 2.27 at 800m,it was the only split I recall roughly 36 second pace,again I would like to be quicker but the plan is by Winston Salem and Indoor Nationals to be closer to my target time.
The second half of this years race was a lot more fun than a year ago when I just fell apart due to the lack of work I'd put in and hearing the bell I knew unless I tripped or pulled a hammy that 3rd place on the podium was mine.
In the end I was 3 seconds behind Mike Nier{4.48.62} and Paul Osland{4.48.97} w/ my 4.51.79 a second faster than last week at The Armory in 4.52.44 which is a faster track.

Obviously getting on the podium pleased me,another medal to the collection{#153 and counting}running a second faster was a delight as its in keeping w/ my "second a week quicker" mindset but also the nature of my race.
Granted had I stuck to my original race plan maybe I'd have ran quicker and maybe gotten second or even won but in the general scheme of things while building towards Indoor Nationals it's another step closer.
For the shits and giggles factor I'm 6 seconds quicker than a year ago,using that baseline can I shave 6 seconds off my 1,000m time of 2.59.61 on Thursday at The Armory???


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