My second and last race for the winter road season was Queensland’s largest 10 km, The Bridge to Brisbane, attracting over 30,000 entrants. The race lead the field over 3 of Brisbane’s iconic bridges, producing a hilly, challenging course. At 6:10 am the gun went off and I couldn’t help but think what the heck am I doing smashing it around the streets when I’d usually be asleep in bed.
The plan was to learn from the previous race and pace myself through the first few kilometers while not losing contact with the front guys. After going through 2 km in about 15th position, I started to move through the field, bridging to a bunch of 4-5 runners, with the lead 2 about 50 m ahead. I settled into a rhythm, trying to keep as relaxed as possible as we made our way through the city and 5 km in approximately 15:25.
Climbing up to the Story Bridge I managed to hang tough and hold the bunch before we coasted down the other side through 7 km. As we approached 8 km I started red lining and lost contact with the group. The final 2 km became a solo effort with the focus of holding it together and finishing off what had been a solid race so far. I crossed the finish line in 7th place in 30:27 I was happy with the way I ran and felt it capped off a solid block of training and reintroduction to racing. We're now taking a couple of weeks away from running before building towards track.
Matt has grown immensely as an athlete this season. His ability to honestly assess how his body is responding to training, and adjusting appropriately, has increased exponentially. As a result, he has put himself in a great position moving forward into track season!
I'm really proud of the progress Matt has made, as he has successfully changed his entire mindset about training - something very few athletes do successfully.
These next two weeks will be the hardest of his life though, as he has to rest up and relax with minimal training of any form!
After a 2-year break from running and racing I finally managed to lace up and step on the start line of a local 10km road race as part of the Brisbane Marathon Festival. That unique mix of pre-race nerves and excitement came flooding back, not knowing how events would unfold. However, I was ready to race. The past 6 months had been the most consistent block of training I’d done in a long time.
As the gun went off and I found myself in the lead pack, feeling comfortable through 3 km (9:30). The eventual winner put in a surge and I went with him, gapping the field and going through 5 km in approximately 15:40. He pulled away in the hilly section of the course leaving me to run the final 5km as a solo effort ducking and diving between the full- and half-marathoners that crowded the course (apologies to those I knocked as I tried to burst through gaps that probably weren’t there). The final 2-3km became a mental test, with thoughts creeping in of Can I hold this? Can I finish? Am I going to get caught? You’ve gone out too hard? I crossed the line in 2nd place in a slower-than-hoped-for 32:33 but more than happy to have completed my first race in far too long.
A key factor in getting to this point was Patrick’s longer-term approach to training; not worrying about yesterday, today or tomorrow, but with the goal of consistent pain-free running. Recovery became a focus and Patrick built in regular rest days. He ensured I kept fresh, allowing my body to absorb the training load rather than continually flogging myself into a hole of fatigue. Instead of fearing rest days, I began to enjoy them. With Patrick onboard, my mindset changed from ‘what’s the most I can handle’, to what’s the minimal stimulus required to achieve the training goal and continue to adapt. More than ever I feel in control of my running and feel I’m maturing as an athlete.
Thanks to Patrick, I’ve come a long way the past year and continue to remain injury free and moving in the right direction. My next race is likely to be the 10km Bridge to Brisbane on 27th August, which attracts up to 40,000 runners. Here’s hoping I can hang tough and mix it with some pretty quick guys at the pointy end of it!
- Matthew Lambert (third from right)
I recently trained for and raced the 2017 Peachtree Road Race which, if you are not familiar, is the world's largest 10k. Coming off of my spring 5k racing season, Patrick put together a perfect short training cycle to get me ready for the 10K distance in only a month and a half.
I loved the increased reps during my track workouts and really felt the workouts he wrote gave me the confidence I needed to race twice the distance I am used to. In all I finished well placing 81st out of 60,000, running my second best 10k time in the tough heat and humidity the Peachtree is known for.
- Max Randolph