Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Mr Average

Just a run home this evening. 56:32. Pissing with rain but I seemed to have a tailwind the whole way which made it pretty enjoyable. Decided not to attack the hills as the Tiger told me I had a fat ass during massage this afternoon. We finally agreed on a bet with me offering him $50 if he could get under 2 mins for 800m on Saturday.

Been getting a bit worried about Six Foot, particularly how tired I always feel along Black Range. Every time I've done it I'm always expecting a load of people to overtake me on that section, wondering how anyone could be running slower than I am. So checked some stats from last year which made for interesting reading (to me at least). I was:

1. 10th to Cox's;
2. 9th fastest in KOM;
3. 9th fastest from Pluvi to the end; and
4. 9th overall.

That all sounds like it makes perfect sense, but there's a lot of variation in how people run Six Foot. For example, last year's winner Andrew Lee was:

1. 1st to Cox's;
2. 2nd fastest in KOM;
3. 7th fastest from Pluvi to the end; and
4. 1st overall.

And Tucks was:

1. 12th to Cox's;
2. 4th fastest in KOM;
3. 2nd fastest from Pluvi to the end; and
4. 5th overall.

Which leads me to conclude that I'm Mr Average.

Tuesday, February 28, 2012

HuRTS 4 x 10mins

Today was brutal.

Hottest day of the summer (33C but we had no shade) and one of the toughest sessions we do. The usual front group of Bartles, J-Fen, Scotty, Tucks and Fats with Fast Charlie also around. Went through the first km in 3:17 and I was pretty much red-lining. Finished at the gates in exactly 10:00. On the second rep Scotty, J-Fen and Bartles pushed a bit harder to finish a few seconds in front while I ran 9:49, with me trying to save something for the third. However, I grabbed some water, jogged back for the start of the third rep and seriously contemplated uppnig stumps there and then. Decided to run it easy, then saw that everyone else was doing the same and somehow drifted to the front. I then felt pretty good on the hills but the pace was slower and we ended the 10mins at the lamppost before the Robbie Burns statue, this time just with Bartles, J-Fen and Scotty. Not sure what happened to Fats, but Fast Charlie stopped after 2 reps and Tucks did the same, remarking that he couldn't even summon the energy to run back to the office.

Not sure what happened to me after that, but I certainly couldn't summon the energy to run with the front 3 back on the final rep so just ran through it at 4:00 pace in 11:07. But even that was a struggle. I was wandering all over the place after I finished but was lucky enough to jump into the harbour with the rest of the squad to get the core temperature down. Feel like crap now, nauseous and light-headed.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Run home

Bloody tired due to lack of sleep over the past few days. Was pretty useless at work today. Had a lunch on so ran home which I prefer to do on Mondays in any case. Pushed the hills holding the core, wouldn't say I attacked them. Got the heart pumping though and otherwise felt pretty comfortable. It's great to be running pain free with no injury niggles at all at the moment.

29:25 at Toyota Garage and 55:35 all up.

Looking forward to Saturday's race on the new course. I reckon it's slightly slower due to the longer drag turning at the Stone Arch - done 3 times now. It'll be a tough finish coming up there in the final 500m. Big bro Alec and his family are coming for the weekend (it's Dad's 70th) and I'm trying persuade my sister-in-law to race. She's pretty handy and it'll be good to see two Highnams in the results.

Sunday, February 26, 2012

Sunday trails

Timmy rocked up at 6:10am and we were off at 6:30am picking up Dicky Green and Justin before meeting the Hamburglar, Jonathan W, Jamie, Paul, John Bowe and Jonathan's mate at Manly Dam. Very easy pace throughout. Felt fine on all the trails but poor Young Timmy is an urban dweller and started to feel it at 15km. We were originally talking about handicap times for Six Foot bets and Timmy was umming and ahhing over 10mins, but by 20km I'd already offered him 20mins based on his form on the hills. Could be a deliberate ruse mind. Maybe he's sharking me. If so, he put in a performance Streep would be proud of as at 23km I was forced to run straight home as fast as I could to pick up the car and come back to pick the poor fella up.

Strange old run. Plenty of trails around Red Hill, going all the way down to Narrabeen Lagoon, doing a 100m sprint on the synthetic track (Hamburglar's got some serious speed) before heading up the hills again to the highest point on the Northern Beaches. Felt comfortable today which was encouraging, albeit was panting a bit at the end due to a quick final 8km. Just short of 30km all up.

Kirst home tonight. Yippeeeeeeeeee!

Saturday, February 25, 2012

Old Manly route

Out last night until 2am drinking JJ's finest red wine to see him off to the UK. Managed my first win at poker and came home with $450. So I woke up today feeling very average. Dad then gave me a timeslot of 2pm to do my run - in the heat of the day. I'd planned on the 7.5km route fast but with a throbbing head and red wine legs I stood outside in the heat wondering what the hell I was doing. Plodded through a 2km warm up then just went for it telling myself it was character building stuff.

First kms in 3:28 and 3:23 then started to struggle on the hills and through the crowds. Picked it up again near Queenscliff to finish in 26:53 (3:36's). Pleased to get under 27 in the circumstances but it's 90s down on my PB from post C2S last year. Followed it with a 2km warmdown

Haven't felt my achilles at all in the past 3 weeks so I ran without my heel raises. Feels so much better doing so. I'll gradually introduce this during shorter runs from now.

Friday, February 24, 2012

Easy Friday

Just John Bowe and Russell today. Headed over to Cremorne in the beautiful weather for an easy 13km. Forgot my watch again, don't know what's going on with my brain. Doesn't bode well for poker night tonight.

Feeling better every day. Could be on for a bit of a jump forward soon - just two more weeks...

59kms for week.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

HuRTS 8 x 800m

Rocked up at the Art Gallery just past 12.25pm to find Mikey had marched the troops off already. I've been a bit busy at work and feeling a bit doozy, plus I didn't have my watch on, so wondered for most of the jog down to Rushcutters whether I had the right session or not, feeling a bit depressed about the prospect of doing a speed session solo. So I did cartwheels when I saw the crowd assembled on the perfect Rushcutters surface. Big discussion on what constituted 800m and we were off, on a rolling cycle of 4 minutes.

The usual crowd upfront of Bartles, Scotty, Tucks and J-Fen. I felt great on the first 4 reps and then things generally went downhill. Hopefully just residual effects of the bug. Tucks seemed to have the same problem, sitting out a couple of reps. All done around 2:24-2:26 pace but who knows whether it's 800m or 750m. Bloody annoying not be able to run barefoot, at times I felt like I was running in a pair of high heels.

Absolutely rooted running home, even had to walk up the stairs. It was hot out there today and my singlet was drenched.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Wednesday MLR

Had to get out today. Joints in shoulders and arms still feeling achey but couldn't stand being stuck in my office for another lunchtime. Was late for the start so spent the first 3km trying to catch everyone up. Did so at Rushcutters, where I joined MC, Kanser, Jonathan W, BW, Indrajeet, Russel and the Kilted Scot with Rob C joining us later. Lots of chatting. Kanser believes Timmy is weak pschologically in no longer wanting to join in any of the tough HuRTS sessions.

Easy pace the whole way. Legs felt great after all the rest. Upper body still aching.

At the end while stretching, Bartles runs by after some sekrit training. We then chat and he proceeds to tell me how he, J-Fen and Scotty were flying yesterday, are all running North Head and will smash me. First run back and bent double, I had to agree with him.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Not good

Set out on my hilly North Head/Tania Park 27km route with the intention of attacking all the hills. Attacked the first hill for about 20m and was just listless with no energy. Lasted 5km before hauling my ass back home. Need to shake this bug.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Fitting it in

With Kirst in the UK and 4 kids to look after, the only way I could do a run was to go down to Campbell Pde, get Bec running her 7 laps and Maggie & Charlie going around on their bikes. So I did 10km doing loops of Campbell Pde. As boring as a Lindop extended anecdote but got it done. Never felt comfortable despite feeling heaps better this morning from the Sinusitis. Ran 39:33 doing the first 5km in 20:40. Feeling pretty weak now so I've not kicked it completely yet.

Tim A, I'm relying on the antibiotics rather than your Granny's special remedies. Is this some trick to get me even more crook for Six Foot? Take it you're running again this year? If so, see you atop Pluviometer as per usual!

Thursday, February 16, 2012


Sinusitis again. Got the drugs in early this time though.

93km for week.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Tiring MLR

Dropped all work and headed out at lunchtime for the usual route. MC, Gus MacGillivray, his mate, Marty and a few others were there. Very slow to start with. Then half way around Centennial MC says he's only doing 1 lap so I push on with Gus and his mate. We then bump into Kanser, Gus and his mate disappear (you have to ask questions about that sort of behaviour in Centennial) so I complete another lap with Kanser and he accompanies me up to Woollahra Gates. We pushed the pace a bit when running together which I kept up all the way home. Thing is, it was getting pretty warm by 1.30pm and that must have taken a bit out of me as I've been feeling crap all afternoon.

All up 18.66km in 1:23:50 (4:28's).

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

HuRTS 2 x 20mins

Only the 2nd time we've done this session and I was feeling up for it this morning. Been feeling strong over the last few days so decided to push it today. Seems like everyone else decided to do the same thing as by 3km I wasn't feeling so strong anymore.

I ran in the front group with J-Fen, Bartles, Tucks and Scottyo. Bartles and I did most of the work until the Opera House when J-Fen pushed the pace. At the OPT, Scottyo joined him and I was holding on, not relishing the return journey. I finished with Tucks and Bartles at 5.88km (3:24's) with J-Fen and Scotty about 10m in front.

I was expecting to be holding on on the return (after a 3 minute rest) but found myself running at the front again. Scotty took the front running under the Harbour Bridge but didn't really push on. Then Tucks took over at the Opera House and did. From then I basically ran with Bartles all the way back, feeling better on the hills. Finished up with 5.83km (3:25's) which was much better than I expected. Surprised to see J-Fen and Scotty drop off the pace given how strong they've been recently. But the big news is that Tucks has come into form very nicely, pulling away with ease today to finish 25m in front of us. All very timely for Six Foot Track.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Varying the run home

Ran home late after work but decided to attack all the hills to try and get the heart rate up. Realised when I was doing this that I just don't get my heart rate up often enough with all this longer distance easy running I've been doing. Bloody hard work. I think it's time I concentrated on more aerobic work.

29:21 at Toyota Garage and 55:32 all up. Quicker as a result of the faster hills and there are plenty of them. Got a good shout from Clive Cooper driving by along Sydney Rd towards the end.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Feel good Sunday

Nippers Carnival up at Narrabeen all morning (where the kids excelled in mediocrity) so headed out late this afternoon for the usual route to Shelley Beach with Billy and Charlie on their bikes. Charlie has just upgraded to a bigger bike and is much faster as a result. I was feeling great so we bounced along at 4min kms the whole way. 11.5km in 46:00. Said hello to Mike Baird at Queenscliff. Good confidence booster after yesterday's long one.

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Long Saturday

Out at 6am with Macca and Big Sam for the usual Narrabeen route but completing the lap of the lake. Great morning, time passed quickly with plenty of chat, at least until 26km when Sam remarked on how good he was feeling when suddenly the pace increased and the talk decreased. We ran the next 7km pretty quick averaging sub4's.

All up 35.7km in 2:39 something (about 4:28's). Felt stronger today so maybe it's starting to come together.

Friday, February 10, 2012

It was close, but I made it through

Sunday tipped me over the edge. I picked up a case of Endaitis* on Sunday and by Monday was struggling big time. Went through 1.5 toilet rolls in my office in blowing my nose. It was effective at keeping people from bothering me but resulted in me having to suffer alone. Tuesday was even worse, Wednesday was slightly better (probably equivalent to a normal person's pneumonia) but Thursday was markedly better. Ventured out for an easy 10km along the flat route from work in 42:13.

Today I joined the depleted Friday squad (MC is ignoring all HuRT Squad etiquette in advertising a Friday swim squad, in between trying to make a buck in selling some dodgy musical theatre tickets) for the normal Monday route. The two JB's, King James, the Kilted Scot, Russell and Clyde were there along with others. Turned over 13.27km in 59:13 (4:27's). Felt great running it, the three days rest doing wonders for the legs but feel very tired and depleted now, probably with some lingering remnants of the virus at play. I've got 36km planned with Big Sam and Macca in the morning so I'm hoping it's gone by then. The tiredness may have something to do with joining in with Laser Zone at Billy's party along eight other 9 year olds this afternoon. I kicked their ass. You were given a great printout after the game showing loads of statistics (number of kills, % hit rate, number of times you were killed etc.) which I thought of photocopying for the blog but in the end my modesty determined it wouldn't be appropriate.

72km for the week.

*A particularly virulent strain of manflu, brought on by overtraining, drinking to excess and constant texting from Young Timmy.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Long Sunday getting faster

Trotted down to the ABC Pool after waiting a few minutes for Kanser and immediately felt good today. Caught up with Big Sam and, with Kanser nowhere to be seen, we headed off. Probably a good job he didn't join us today as I think the pace may have been a little too hot for him.

We took it easy for the first 12kms up to Narrabeen then, after stopping for our usual first water and Gu, Big Sam decided to put the foot down. I think he was running angry after yesterday's performance and I felt similar. Anyway, from then on it was a good pace all the way home feeling great, even pushing the Griffin St hill. Glorious morning made for a great run. The splits tell the story:

5:11, 4:28, 4:43, 4:28, 4:24, 4:24, 4:12, 4:15, 4:20, 4:03, 4:14, 4:13, 3:57, 4:00, 4:07, 4:00, 4:14, 4:01, 4:03, 4:08, 4:02, 3:56, 3:53, 3:51, 4:00, 4:02, 3:52, 4:15, 5:16, 4:00, 4:15.

All up 31.02km in 2:11:05 (4:13's). Somewhere in all that Sam probably ran a 10km faster than he did at Homebush yesterday.

I then did 4.54km with the elder kids down to Queenscliff in 25:10 (5:33's).

Saturday, February 04, 2012

Striders 10km Homebush - 11th in 34:32

Well, not the start to the season I was hoping for but it's under the belt.

Caught a lift with Ben and Big Sam and arrived with plenty of time for some run throughs to get the heart rate up. Big crowd at the start with some very good runners fronting up - Tom do Canto, Uncle Dave, CT, Farrugia, the Horne, Tucks etc. I lined up in the second row (behind Timmy, I think he was racing EJ to the first corner - and lost) and set off pretty hard (at least I thought it was). However, before 1km was reached the front group of 6 had already gapped Tucks and I by about 20m. At the top of the hills on to the footpath and crowd behind of Tongey, Bleasel, Dean Degan, Brendan Davies and an Asian chap I didn't recognise had caught Tucks and I. I struggled around the very wet horsetrack and was gapped by Tucks and the Asian chap. At 5km (16:52) they had about 20m on me. The time at 5km depressed me a bit and I immediately lost concentration and started to drift. Bleasel then came past followed by Tongey and I was running with Dean and Brendan. It stayed that way until the end, with me pulling ahead of them in the final km.

Legs felt heavy the whole way. I thought I was turning them over OK but apparently not. Pretty ugly negative split. But it's in the bag and the training continues. The body feels great with no niggles.

Cooled down with Tucks, Timmy, Kanser, and Big Sam. We all struggled today. My head to heads looks a bit lop-sided but at least I got Timmy on the handicap system.

Couple of photos:

50m to the finish...

Me gurning, Tucks, Kanser looking fucked, Young Timmy and Big Sam...

Friday, February 03, 2012

Friday fitting it in

Ran 5.9km to Lime St for a massage with the Tiger then ran 3.7km back. 4:07 pace there, 5:07 pace back. Bumped into Fast Charlie and Warwick on the way back so ran with them.

Tiger diagnosed my knee issue then set to work on it and it turned out a treat.

Just back from a 4 hour boozy client lunch which isn't ideal prep for tomorrow but I'll try my best.

105km for the week.

Thursday, February 02, 2012

Not Hickson Road HuRTS

Had a few too many Coopers Pale Ale after the swim carnival last night and only a few hours sleep so it was a very easy session today. Jogged down late to Hickson Road and met the squad coming back on their second rep. Joined in with the second group for reps 3, 4 and 5 doing 3:39's, 3:32's and 3:25's (per km, not total time) feeling OK. Then jogged back with Tucks, MC, Todd and Big Sam. All up 10.27km in 43:50 (4:16's).

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

Wednesday MLR

Just MC and King James today with James peeling off at Fox Studios on the 2nd lap. Very easy chatting all the way. Took the concrete path around Centennial due to the rain so a bit longer. 18.69km in 1:27:02 (4:39's).

Excitement is mounting in the office for the annual swim carnival this evening. Here are a couple of photos showing the glorious AAR banking team and their captain..