Thursday, October 30, 2008

HuRTS Gate to Gate

Did a very easy 5km warm-up in 22:23 then 7 x Gate to Gates. Ran the first 300m quick then jogged the rest of the way finishing each one in about 3:20. Did them all with Kanser with Serg joining in the final couple. The first 300m were run pretty quick, Kanser showing a good turn of pace. Perhaps he read my last report and was showing the final run-in on Saturday morning will be no foregone conclusion. Muz, DC5, KMK and the Judge were running the reps in the normal way - Muz looking very good.

Saturday should be fascinating with plenty turning up and a few good battles - Uncle Dave and CT, Muz and Durante, me and Kanser and Flakey trying to stay in front of DickyBoy as the 40 minute pacer - I'm picking up DickyBoy on the way there so we'll have a good chat about Superflake encouragement talk.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

HuRTS Hickson Road

Crowd today upfront included Stevie T, Kanser, DC5, Muz, Enda, Rich H, English Andy plus a large crowd of others. Notable absentees were Durante, MC and Serg - all secret training. Reps went:

3:34, 3:30, 3:33, 3:31, 3:32

So nice and consistent. I thought that was one of my quickest sessions but looking back on times done in May to August when I was at my best it's pretty average. Just a little quicker than I ran in September. Ran with Muz for all of them with DC5 and Kanser just behind. It was quite humid today so that could have slowed them a little. Saturday's 10km is more about speed endurance though and I've no idea where I'm at on that. Felt good on the last rep though and was able to respond when Muz pushed ahead in the final 300m.

Progression of my 10km races at Lane Cove (most recent first): 33:16, 33:17, 33:31, 34:06, 34:14. Would love to keep that going but not so sure.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Recovery Monday

Out for a very easy 10km jog (46:50) with Kanser, Serg, Muz and Stevie T. Hot today. Kanser's looking strong again and I reckon he could give his PB a shake on Saturday. Will be doing well to stay in front of him. I reckon I've got him in a sprint finish though. The Muz/Durante battle will be one to watch and hope to see Stevie T dip under 31mins. I'll be presenting him with an honorary HuRTS T-Shirt tomorrow on the basis he wears it when collecting his prize on Saturday morning.

Photo attached was taken secretly by a friend of Steve's wife who snapped us on today's run. The photo had reached Steve's in-box before he even returned from the run. It's like Big Brother out there. From left to right it is Muz, me, Steve, Kanser and Serg.
Was checking out this link this evening to Cram's top 5 which I know my Dad will appreciate:
Cram was the local hero when I was just starting running, but I'd forgotten just how good he was in 1985. What's fantastic is that he runs all these races, rewriting the record books, in his local Jarrow AC vest. Jarrow was a pretty small club (much smaller than Striders) but had the benefit of a great synthetic track (albeit only 6 lanes) which I raced on a number of times.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Long Sunday

Usual Manly 10km loops - did 3 but cut short the third by not going around Campbell Parade as I had to get back to get the kids to Nippers. 28.7km in 2:02:43 (4:17 per km). Legs still heavy - have just lost all bounce since Tuesday when I was feeling great. The heel is feeling good today though. Beautiful morning and great to run along Manly beach at 6am (although not so good by 8am). The usual cheery hello from Jenny Wickham as she sped by in the opposite direction at about 18km. She seems to do her Sunday runs at race pace.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

CR 5km

Jogged 3km beforehand trying to get the legs moving then took over the time calling duties before setting off with Muz and WildCoyote. They both set off at an incredible pace before WildCoyte dropped off at about 800m. Clocked the first km in 3:00 and Muz already had about 20 yards on me. At this point my legs just went dead - the effects of Thursday's session still inside them. Tried to turn them over quicker but to no effect and with Muz pulling ahead rapidly I was on my own the whole way. 2km in 6:19, 3km in 9:37, missed 4km then 16:16 all up. Pretty disappointed with the time (at least the km's were consistent after the first!) but still a beautiful morning (perfect conditions) and fun to be out there. I'll just treat it as a good speed session and concentrate on getting things right for the 10km next week. All this short stuff is just too painful.

Muz finished in a fantastic 15:42 - he'll run a great 10km at Lane Cove. If I can keep the gap at 34 seconds there I'll be doing well. Jogged back to the start with Muz for 13km all up - 100km for the week.

Friday, October 24, 2008


Very easy 10km by myself at lunchtime in 44:00.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

10 x 400m

Headed out after work with Durante, Stevie T and Serg to ES Marks to run some 400's on a proper track. Bit daunting at first - plenty of professional types hanging around the track, although given the quality of the guys I was running with, we (or they) were pretty much in that category. Reps were run going straight into a 200m jog then straight off again. They went:

66, 67, 67, 68, 68, 70, 69, 69, 69, 68

Steve was running 62's. Durante ran a fantastic session running 65's finishing with a 64. He'd have the 3 seconds on me by the first 200m. I ran them all with Serg, who despite threatening to pull out all the way through still finished strongly pipping me on the last. Durante will thrash me over 3000m if this is anything to go by, and the 10km at Lane Cove will be shaky. My only excuse is that I was drinking until 2.30am last night (after taking out the Jackpot at Durty Nelly's by knowing what the second deepest lake in the world was). I couldn't have run at lunch so this session was ideal.

We finished up with four 150's - cruising the bend then sprinting. I don't know how to sprint. I tried to move my arms faster to make the legs go quicker but ended up almost falling over myself. Nice beer in the Doncaster afterwards to round out a great evening.

Huge congrats to Tucks and family on the birth of Nia Tuckey. Hope to see you out soon mate.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

Easy 15km

Legs felt very tired today. Set out a bit late with Durante to do the usual Wednesday route but after the first marathon pace stretch up to Woolhara Gates my legs were feeling very tired so just decided to do one loop then head back. Garmin got a bad initial reception then cut out but it was about 15km in 1:05. Decided it was better to feel fresher for speed tomorrow than slog out another tough mid-week run. Yeah yeah, I'm just a pussy.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

HuRTS - 45mins Fartlek

Flakey - anything but! Good crowd today for probably the toughest session we do. 60 seconds fast, 30 seconds easy for 45 mins. Set off with Stevie T, Serg and Durante feeling pretty good and relaxed into the fast sections. Turned at Mrs Macquarie's Chair and realised we'd had the wind behind and life was going to be a bit tougher. Stevie T had long since disappeared off into the distance (he and Durante are running the 5000m at ES Marks on Saturday so will be fascinated to see what they can do) leaving Serg, Durante and myself to share the pacing duties. We turned further down Hickson Rd than usual (opposite the end of the nicely renovated building) and tried to get home. Passed through 10km in about 33:53 and Serg and Durante pulled up stumps shortly after on 36 minutes. I could see Kanser about 30 yards ahead at that stage so concentrated on trying to catch him. Turned into the now headwind at Mrs Macquarie's and really struggled - there didn't seem to be much difference between the fast and slow sections. However, managed to finish at the statue on 45mins so only 120yards short of the starting point.

Feeling really good in training at the moment. No idea why as the training schedule is all over the place with work and holidays. Perhaps it's biorythmns or something - I hit a purple patch in October last year too.

Followed up with an Easy Tiger massage. I need to keep on feeding him money as he'll shortly be owing me $300. He's bet me $100 on breaking each of 1:55 for 800m, 4:00 for 1500m and 9:00 for 3000m this season. I think he believes he's Peter Pan.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Doubling up

14km very easy with MC, Serg, Muz, Stevie T, Durante and Mike from Nike at lunchtime. Run at about 4:30s. Then ran home. Didn't get the time but felt good so pace was probably about the same as Friday. I could get into this twice-a-day malarkey (probably will need to if I'm serious about GCM next year). Running home is quite enjoyable at the moment - have loosened up by the end of the day and it's good to get all the stresses of the day out before I get home. So 27km all up today.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

No Long Run

Weekend from hell on the work front. Had to work all weekend getting to bed at 2.30am Friday night/Sat morning and 1am last night. Just squeezed in 12km today run at 4:30 pace and that felt like a struggle. This hard work is killing me (and my fitness).

Saturday, October 18, 2008

Very easy Friday

Plod home from work in the evening after a horrendous day starting at 5.30am. 31:15 at Toyota Garage and 58:28 all up. Felt surprisingly good.

Thursday, October 16, 2008

HuRTS Mona Fartlek

Smaller crowd than usual - Muz, Kanser (looking pale after getting off a 24 hour flight last night), the Judge, Adam, Luke, Chris's G and E and a few Macquarie boys (but no DC5 or KMK). Muz the Judge and I ran in the front group with Kanser just behind. Same story as usual, pushed on the way out to finish just beyond the Stone Gates (reached with 9 seconds to spare), not quite as quick as we used to on the way back (I nearly took a tumble trying to avoid 4 Mums spread across the thin harbour path). The Judge dropped off just coming into Farm Cove and Muz and I ran the whole thing together. Finished just past the bubbler on 5.93km (averaging 3:23s). Warm but not too hot and no wind to speak of.

The Judge is ominously getting fitter.

Not good news for Serg who looks to have picked up a nasty knee injury. Hope you can sort it out mate.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Back to long Wednesday

Back to work today. Joy. Caught up with MC, Ben, new Charlie and Clyde Ros for the usual 19km Centennial session. All but Clyde caught short after one lap of Centennial. Took it very easy today - 12.35 for the lap of Centennial although into a strong wind so it didn't feel comfortable. Lost coverage on the watch after then but I was 51:41 at that stage so slow. Felt very hungry and energy depleted by the end but a good chat to Clyde and pleased to have done it.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

At home

15km around home - same as last time but through the playpark at the end rather than up Suwarrow. 15.13km in 59:23 (3:56 pace). Ran the first 11km bang on 4:00 pace all the way then picked it up over the final 4km. Nice run feeling comfortable. Bit concerned about my weight after the holiday though - 67.2kg this morning - about 4kg over ideal race weight. Too many meals out and beers.

Monday, October 13, 2008

NYC and Kangaroo Valley

Just back from a fantastic break in New York then Kangaroo Valley.
New York was great. Was worn out when we arrived from a torrid time at work and the long flight, so decided to recover by going out on a big night in the Big Apple. The stayers were Muz, Ben and Chris (from UBS) after Serg fell asleep in the corner at the first bar. Eventually got in at about 3am but woke up from my sleep on the bathroom toilet at about 5am, so then crawled into bed. Spent the next day trying not to empty the contents of my stomach whilst looking at a few Jackson Pollocks in the MOMA. He's not the best artist to look at while trying to do this. We then had the cocktail reception in the evening where I stuck to mineral water while watching Charlie glug down glass after glass of red wine and thinking my bet that Jeremey would beat him was safe. We (the UBS and Allens teams) had a quick pasta meal before going to bed early hoping to finally catch up on some sleep. The sleep never came. Kept my eyes closed until about 3am while listening to Ash snoring and New York at night but not sleeping. Then turned on the TV for a couple of hours before trying more closed eye stuff. I think I got about 30 minutes before the alarm went off at 7am.
Did my usual pre-race routine and wasn't feeling that bad despite the lack of sleep - at least the hangover had gone and I wasn't drowsy from deep slumber. Did a few sprints and started to feel a bit more confident. The talk before the race was of Stevie T's win in the Striders 10km at Homebush which I picked up on my Blackberry in the morning. He'd been looking in sensational form in training but to convert it into a win over Colin Johnston (the State 10km bronze medallist) in his first competitive race in ages was something. Be sure to say hello to us when you're famous, mate.
The plan from the start had been just to try to stick to Muz and Serg for as long as possible. Got a great start in the middle of the road (you can see from the pictures in the link below) and found myself quite far forward after 500m with slower starters overtaking me. Muz inevitably came past shortly after the first turn so increased the pace slight just to stick to him. Serg came by just before Grand Central Station (shortly before the first mile) and we started to form a group of about 6 of us largely led by Serg. Went through 1 mile in 5:01 which I worked out was 17:33 pace overall but couldn't do the maths when the body was hurting to calculate was 3:06 pace. Most of the next mile was slightly downhill running to 29th St and we just stayed in the same group - Serg, Muz and I at the front. Muz was showing a bit of bravado at the turn by cheering on Charlie and Jeremey running the other way (I was too knackered to manage more than a grunt). After the turn, it's a slight uphill back to Grand Central Station. At this point, I was starting to hurt and hang off the back of the group. Serg was still leading (and looking strong) with a chap from General Electric and Muz was about 3 yards in front of me. Just tried to concentrate at this stage - all the negative thoughts were running through my head but also felt that if I could hold on until the final 600m then I'd have a chance because of more kms in the legs. We came out of Grand Central as a strung out group of 6 and at this point I could see the red cones in the distance where the final turn is. Suddenly felt as though I had a bit of energy so put in a bit of effort to overtake Muz and put some pressure on Serg to see how he'd react. I honestly believe that if he'd put one more effort in at that stage then I'd just have given up but instead I went past and all I heard was him shouting "go with him Muz" or words to that effect. So I knew he was gone but that Muz wasn't, and he's a tenacious bugger. Went round the cones and looked up to see the finish line what seemed miles away (about 600m). Two blokes came past (spirits lifted when I saw Muz wasn't one of them) so I decided just to stick to them and try and let them drag me in to the line. One of them was a pain in the ass as he kept on accelerating past then slowing down and then accelerating again (he got me on the line). Eventually crossed the line with my legs like jelly. Results are below....

Amazing how much more you remember the shorter the race. I'm sure my 10km write-ups aren't this long. Great night out on Saturday evening capped off watching Manly win the Grand Final in the only Australian pub in Manhattan. Got a bit emotional at this stage so went home to bed.
Arrived home after sleeping for about 24 hours to go on holiday to Kangaroo Valley. Had a brilliant time. Perfect weather, great house, completely relaxing and haven't turned my mobile on in a week. Did 4 runs - three 10kms (38:41, 37:50 and 36:45) and 25km at 4:18 pace yesterday. Heel was a bit sore on the long run but have loaded up on Voltaren and it's better now. Just felt great while running the 10kms which is why they were quick. I'd generally go out in about 4:00 pace and then increase the pace all the way. The 36:45 was a 19:15/17:30 split. Eventually found a 10km out and back route that didn't involve running into herds of cows. The owner of our house told me they were harmless but I'm sure one of them that was staring me down on my first run had no udder.

Attached a few photos taken on 7 mile beach on Saturday.

Wednesday, October 01, 2008

Big Apple Beckons

Well, I've had to work past midnight every night this week, had about 5 hours sleep each night, I'm still stuck in the office and will be jumping on a 24 hour flight to NYC in about 12 hours. Managed to get out for a 30 minute plod this evening but benefited more from the stretch afterwards than anything else. Sitting in a chair does no good to the muscles.