Running is a sport of lessons. Lessons that you only have to learn once (don't 'box the jesuit' before running when the temperature is well below zero), lessons that you have to relearn every single season (when it's wet and you're wearing a cotton t-shirt always grease your nipples) and lessons that you never really learn (if something hurts take a few days off).
Racing 3k's is a lesson I have to learn every single season. Whenever I wear a watch and run to splits my race always turns into a tedious, sterile experience with a disappointing outcome. This race was no exception. My adherence to my splits left me between two groups, effectively time trialling on my own. I managed to close on a couple of athletes at the end but I felt more like the guy who joins in at the end of a pub fight and kicks someone when they're already lying on the floor. Standing there growling in the middle of the pub shouting "come on then" when everybody's already left because the police are coming.
So, on a perfect evening I left with a decidedly average 9:15.92 to my name. Only 5 seconds slower than my best last year, but well behind the point at which I hoped to be. Lesson learned.