It might have taken me several months – and a serious burger deficiency – but on Thursday 14th September, I finally achieved my goal and ran 5km in less than 20 mins.
I was feeling good after work and thought I’d get myself to South Kensington as quickly as I could. And as it turns out, as quickly as I could was 5km in 19:52. I really wasn’t setting off with the intention of getting sub-20 5k – I remember thinking that around 21 mins was a realistic aim – so it came as a huge surprise to me that I completed the first kilometre in 3:58. I made a decision then that this was as good a chance as any, so I thought let’s go for it.
Unfortunately, kilometres 2 (4:02) and 3 (4:12) brought me back down down to earth and I thought the dream was over. I really questioned whether I’d ever get to eat another burger – which I can assure you is rock bottom for me. But then kilometre 4 came along, the real MVP. Approaching Hyde Park, I blasted out a 3:48 and the dream was well and truly back on. I have no doubt that this moment will go down in history, the turning point in this tale. When a movie is inevitably made about my life in 2032 a young, handsome up-and-coming actor will recreate this momentous scene, and it will almost certainly make the trailer.
Back on target and with one LONG kilometre remaining I just kept telling myself that the promised land was not much further away. Another 4(ish) minutes of pain and it would all be over. I just had to keep on going. I decided that for the rest of the run, I wasn’t going to pay attention to my running app, I was just going keep running and wait for my little automated Nike App friend to tell me I’d completed 5km.
When that moment finally came, I was absolutely battered. My legs were like jelly, I was dripping with sweat and I was not feeling good about the prospect of the 800m walk to South Kensington station (FYI this took me about 20 minutes in the end). I stopped and listened the Mr Nike App and he told me I’d completed it in 19:52 – I was undoubtedly the happiest little boy on the planet. Completely knackered, but so very happy.
Once I’d processed the fact I’d actually completed my challenge, two thoughts went through my head:
- I DID IT. IT’S OFFICIAL, I AM THE FASTEST MAN ALIVE (this part may not be exactly what I was thinking, but I was certainly very pleased with myself)
- Get me a burger and get it to me NOW.
I raced home (by raced, I mean walked very slowly) and told Elin. Thankfully we were on the same wavelength, and she asked me where I wanted to get my burger from. 25 short minutes later, I was showered and Elin and I were tucking into the most gorgeous burgers I could have imagined.
What a journey it’s been. It’s certainly fitting for me that it ended in a burger. I’m not sure how many people even care, but thanks for those who paid attention to all this nonsense whilst I waffled on. I’m sure we’ll find a new challenge in the new year, but for now, I’m not giving up any more burgers!