I won't lie, I was incredibly nervous before this race. The 2 previous races I had got PBs, and by some substantial margins. I felt pressure from myself, I wanted a sub 55 and I knew just how hard that was going to be. Nerves kicked in as I stood at that start line. I tried to block it and just played the route in my head. The crowd began to move forward, the race had begun.
I crossed the line at 5 minutes, I knew I had 5 minutes to deduct next time I saw the timer. We began with a slight up and past some houses. I had a nice comfortable pace, focused on the runners ahead and went with it. 2.5km was my focal point and a water station. Felt happy at this point, next stop the Minster at half way. Through the streets of York, up hills and down hills, lots of twists and turns. Then I could hear the bells. Half way was approaching.
Half way point and I still felt OK, runners all around me and some rather tight corners to negotiate. Down onto the canal path and ready for the next water station at 7.5km. Over a small bridge that felt would have been more in place on ninja warrior and on to the water station. Bottles without lids, what is that about, few sips and off again. Last 2km to go.
My average split time was lower than I needed and I knew it would take something for me to achieve what I needed. Down and past the Terry's factory, rather pretty I thought before on to the final km. Here you could see the finish before it twisted cruelly away and out of view. So close yet so far. The 400m flag in front of me and I turned up the speed. Not very speedy mind you, I don't run that fast but still I kicked and went for it.
I could see the finish and the timer in front. I knew it would be really close so I gave it everything. I crossed the line and went rather wobbly. Grabbed a goody bag and went and sat on the grass, waiting for a text to tell me my time.
My phone bleeped.
Dare I open the text message. I knew I had given it everything, I could have done no more.
I almost screamed! I had done it, sub 55 and a new pb!
It might be a while before I beat that but it felt good!