Sunday, August 31, 2014

Sunday recovery

Very easy 10km.  Tired but not too sore.

Stayed up last night getting FB updates on Tucks' exploits at UTMB.  A sensational performance to finish 6th.  That bloke just doesn't know when to stop.  Seeing him at 17th after the first checkpoint I knew he was on form something big.

Bec's Grand Final.  This looks quite professional:

Saturday, August 30, 2014

Fast Finish #2

Another rainy day.  Might as well live in Manchester.

Another great turnout, with Macca, Andy, Clarkey, Neil P, Barts, Ben, Quentin, Craig Mc and Justin all fronting up.  Pretty much all sub 2:40 marathoners.  

Pace was steady to start but after the first stop at Collaroy we were running 4:10's.  Not so muddy so we ran the path to the Narrabeen Track and back, making it 33km on the nose from the pool back to the pool.  Took a gel at the turnaround.  At Narrabeen (11km to home) the pace picked up, albeit thwarted every now and then by side road cars.  We had a nasty headwind most of the way home so adopted my usual position tucking in behind Quentin and Clarkey.  By Dee Why the front group seemed to be me, Clarkey, Neil, Macca and Quentin.  Coming through the hills of Dee Why I felt the pace drop (no doubt helped by the fact I was drafting the whole way) so I decided to push the pace to see who had anything left.  Quentin was just behind as ever and we had a bit of a gap at the top of the hill.  From here home we were pushing each other all the way, we the pace getting under 3:30's.  Last 2km in 3:24 and 3:16.  Final 10km was 35:20.  All up 33km in 2:18 odd (4:05 pace).  Clarkey and Neil came in shortly after with Macca right on their tails.  He's hitting some real form.  Then Andy and Justin.  Poor Barts continued the "woe is me" routine, but at least he's getting out and doing it.

With the run to and from home it's 35.5km.

Real confidence booster - felt great today.  Got a boozy conference this week though so will have to try to restrain myself to give North Head a good go next week.

Friday, August 29, 2014

Soggy rat

Ok, I've had enough.  This weather is depressing me.  

10km this morning with few aches and pains for a change.  Doing lots of stretching.

121km for the week.

Good luck to my good mate Tucks in that ridiculous race traversing 3 countries today.  Top 10 fella.

Thursday, August 28, 2014

Double day do be doo

AM:  was supposed to do a 17km tempo but was just too fatigued and sore this morning so knew it would do more harm than good.  So did 8km slow instead, bumping into Ryan Cantwell and Clive Cooper en route.  Seems a lot of people train early morning....

PM:  went to HuRTS.  Much kerfuffle over the session finally settling on 5 x 800m (measured by Timmy, so it was closer to 750m) followed by a 3km tempo (measured by no-one, so it was long).  I really struggled on the 750's unable to get my legs going.  Wildman had a whinge that no one was trying hard enough, so I pushed the last 3 and managed to come home in front on 2 of them.  Then slogged out the 3km tempo with Barts and Crossy in 10:20.

Warmdown for 12km all up.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

Finally, an MLR

So finally got back to 21km around the wharves.  Ran with the 2 Jonathan's, the 2 Andy's, Russ and Gus.  Plainly not many were planning the full run as they went out at a canter running 4:10's around Walsh Bay.  My poor tired legs from last night were struggling.  Finished well though with Russ and Saffer Jonathan who is running strongly.

Some disappointing news this morning with Erika disclosing that she is heading Eastside to do her Sunday run this week.  However, to her credit, she did disclose that it was because she wanted to take it easier this week and those Eastside boys just don't run as fast and secondly Timmy had been hassling her incessantly so she thought if she made a token effort to head over this once he may leave her alone.  I told her I doubted it.

HuRTS Rosa 5km TT

The shame.

First we have CT pull out having changed the TT to a Tuesday to fit in his schedule. Then, with dark clouds coming over mid-afternoon, the heavens opening and wind picking up, Enda pulls out.  And he was only on timing duties!  I have to admit, when he sent the text I was secretly hoping we might all call it quits.  It was really quite depressing out there.  Even after driving Q, Renee and Jason R to ES Marks, we bought our entry tickets and said we could just take the obligatory photo, make up some times and pretend we ran. 

But run we did.  Watched the Tiger and Sam Strutt do a 2km and some sprints, then watched the Can Too runners crowd the inside 2 lanes just as we were about to start.  But start we did.

Funny old run.  Q took the lead as usual but to be fair I did share the duties more than last month.  Felt more comfortable this month pushing up on Q's shoulder when I felt the pace drop, which probably explains the slower time.  But I was obviously tired enough to completely confuse myself.  With no lap counter or timer (thanks Enda) I was counting the laps up to 10 and the final km.  Started to push the pace with a km to go, but then heard someone shout a lap time of 12:03 about 200m later which confused me.  Started to kick ahead of Q with 600m to go only to hear 13:18 being shouted out when I enter the final lap?  So I start to waiver, Q comes up to my shoulder and I ask him how far we have to go and he says a lap and a half.  Feck.  Here was me winding up my final sprint.  So I lose a bit of wind and just hang on for one more lap.  

End up with 15:46. Bit disappointed with the time (I've gone from 15:28 to 15:37 to 15:46 - 9s slower each month).  But it did feel more comfortable this month so maybe it's just a mojo or training cycle thing.  Q ran 15:44, Neil 16:05 and Renee PBed with a 19:03 but was disappointed not to dip under.  Judging by Q's watch, I think I ran 3:06, 3:10. 3:12, 3:12, 3:06.

So Quentin and I are 6:6 for the season.  At least we're not afraid to race one another.  Can't say the same for some other members of the squad...

Here we are:

Monday, August 25, 2014

Manic Monday

Out with the squad on the usual route but the OH was cut off as was Barangaroo.  We didn't know what to do with ourselves.  Managed 15km all up with MC, Clarkey and Renee finishing the whole lot but numerous others involved earlier on.  Jackie O was back!  'Lil Jimmy regaled us with the detail of his latest win and I had a very "Sydney" conversation with Erika about kids skools.

Speaking of which, today was dress up for Book Week:

And I can't resist adding a photo of Claudia going to her super heroes party yesterday.  Alec/Jamie - do you recognise the head wear?

The Sunday Times

Title is especially for Timmy.

10km to Shelley and back with a loop of Nolans and Passmore in the early evening.  Nice and easy, Japanesey.

Saturday, August 23, 2014

Manly Hardcore Posse

Ran down to the ABC Pool shortly after 6am to meet Macca, CT, Clarkey, Quentin, Andy, Ben, Jamie and Erika for our 35k'er, sweeping up Elle en route shortly after Dee Why.  In short, the creme de la creme of the HuRT Squad.  

We gave strict instructions to Macca to keep the pace at 4:30.  It was like trying to tame a wild stallion.  He was champing at the bit to press on the whole way, the poor fella.  After a few about turns just as the we seemed to approach a nice stretch of trails, we started heading back home.  Then in Dee Why Clarkey suddenly puts his foot down and gaps us all by miles.  We picked the pace up over the final 5km to finish averaging 4:17's, but with the final 10km in 40mins.

35km all up.  Lovely run feeling good.

Friday, August 22, 2014

Friday meander

Just planned a very easy 10km today around my set route from work, to ease the legs after a tough week and recover for tomorrow's long run.  By bizarre coincidence I ran into Barts at 2km so ran the rest with him.  Poor fella looked like he'd been pulled back from the brink of death's door.  He'd start a hacking cough whenever we dropped beneath 4:45 pace.  "It's been tough Tom.  I told Sam we had to treat this like it's a war.  But I think we're through the worst".  You get the picture.

Felt much better at the end than I did at the start.

114km for the week.  My biggest in 6 months, including a couple of real quality sessions.

Thursday, August 21, 2014

HuRTS 3 x 2km

Or Hardcore HuRTS.  That session was tough.  3 x 2km off a strict 2 min recovery.  Given we ran 6:17, 6:10 and 6:15, that's the equivalent of running 6kms in 22:42 (3:47 pace) but including 4 minutes of standing around doing nothing.

Turned up today feeling pretty tired after what will be my biggest week in at least 3 months.  Looked like a very low turnout with just Timmy and Erikakaka there but I must have been early for once.  Slowly the masses arrived.  Mikey decided to split us up into 4 groups and then managed to insult the 4th group in his own inimitable smile ("You boys just run for 8mins then stop.  Actually, just go for 7 and a half minutes").

With Andy, Macca, Timmy, Jason R, Richard M and others going in the 2nd group, it left just me, Quentin and Clarkey in the front group.  Settled into the same pattern as ever, with Quentin taking the wind (against for 1st and 3rd reps hence the times) while I tucked in and Clarkey just behind.  Clarkey would drop off a bit at about the 1.5km of each rep so plainly we were putting in rock solid efforts.  I was knackered after the 2nd rep and wondered how I'd hang on for the third.  Q shot off fast, we caught him by 1km then it was an ugly slugfest for the final 500m with me on my knees by the end.  But that's what this session's all about.  With only 3 reps you have to give each one your all.  But being 2km you need to find some sort of rhythm or form for the mid kilometre as it's just too far to slug it out the whole way.  Great 5km training I reckon.

Long warmdown with MC, Clarkey and Jono for 14km all up.

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Coming together

Usual Wednesday route to Centennial (1lap).  Need to start lengthening my Wedneaday run in the lead up to Melbourne, but not this week as it'll be my biggest week in a long while in any case.

Weather OK.  Small but select group of MC, Timmy, Clarkey, Jason R (back after a long while) and Slapstick who seemed happy to run 10m behind us the whole way.  Easy pace (4:40's), feeling pretty tired but a genuine recovery run.  Starting to feel as though things are coming together.

Some thoughts:

1.  Doing summer clerk interviews atm. Amazingly competitive out there.  Thank God I came through in the boom times.
2.  Haven't heard of Paris Hilton in a while.
3.  Sydney tradesmen must be the most expensive in the world.  I blame excessively stringent immigration.  This is a big country.
4.  Why would anyone go on a cruise ship?
5.  My suits are getting shiny.
6.  If all else in life goes to crap, there will always be Newcastle Utd, the Tour de France and Coopers Pale Ale.  And City to Surf day.
7.  Manly versus Bondi is not a contest.  They are both great places to live.  Particularly Manly.

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

HuRTS 2 x 20mins

We're worried about Barts.  He's gone AWOL and not answering emails.  The pressure of the Truscott Super Series has finally got to him.

I've been taking Tuesday sessions a bit easier over the past 12 months, mainly because I realised it's too tough on the body to push a session only 2 days after the long run.  But having done the long run on Saturday, I felt really good today so decided to put a bit more effort in.  Even Timmy noticed.

CT, Crossy, Quentin, Muz and, wait for it, WILDMAN! were all there up front.  Macca, Andy, Timmy, MC, Pete W et al all in the next group.  We did an easyish first km on another stinker of a day - at least the rain held off but 'twas windy.  But from then the pace just ramped up and up until we were running 3:15's.  Reached 20mins just shy of the Northern entrance to Barangaroo - where we now finish the Hickson Rd reps - for 5.98km.  Felt OK'ish.  Fast but not excessively uncomfortable.  On the way back Q went quick from the start running 3:10's to 3:15's.  Just me and him by the hills at the end and finished with 12s to spare.  Very quick in the wind, although to be fair, I was tucked in behind the big fella most of the way.

Long warmdown for 7km all up.  Tough session and the legs are feeling it this arvo.

Monday, August 18, 2014

Wet Wet Wet

Frankly, it was a fucking awful day.  Cold, wet and windy.  The hardcore massive was myself, Crossy, Clarkey, Springer, Renee, Erikakaka, Elle, Sam and Ray.  Did the full 15km.  Stopped to watch a seal (sea lion?) frolicking in the water next to the Opera House.  Not many people can say that.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Late Sunday wander

Out at 6ish for an hour up to Curl Curl and down to Shelley.  Very easy pace but the legs were tired after yesterday.  

Spent the last 1.5km running with a 6 pack of Coopers Pale Ale.  Gave me new respect for the Tiger's 56min C2S carrying Dora's head.  I was knackered.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Parkrun and Long Run

Off to Rooty Hill early Sunday am so got out of bed at 5:45am and was running by 6am to fit some kms in before Parkrun, do Parkrun as a tempo then some more kms after.  Did 11km beforehand to Shelley Beach then up over Queenscliff to Freshwater and Curl Curl.  Tempoed the Parkrun running 17:01 (splits of 3:24, 3:21, 3:25, 3:17, 3:33) then did a final 14km at a quicker pace than before.

All up 30km in 2:09:00 (4:17's).

Friday, August 15, 2014

Manly life

Lunch on today so just an hour up to North Head and back this morning.  Gave Quentin a shout along the beach but he was ear-phoned up.  Beaut of a day.

Thursday, August 14, 2014

HuRTS Pyramid

Stuck on a call so turned up late for the pyramid session.  Caught the first 3 lapper and latched on to Elle and Greta.  Ran with Andy on the 4 lapper then joined the first group running with Timmy for the final 3 reps.

Felt good today, feeling back to normal after the weekend.  Need to start training properly from tomorrow and cut down on the beer.

11km all up.

Tuesday, August 12, 2014

HuRTS 4 x 10mins

Just cruised these with a good crowd though.  Ran with Mikey, Timmy, Tucks, Toddy, Angussy et al.  About 3:50's.  Hammy okish but can still feel it.  Getting the cricket ball out again tonight.  Ouch.

Summer clerk cocktail party tonight spent drinking red wine and deflecting brown nosing.  Macquarie Bank Golf day tomorrow at Pymble.  I am the all-new corporate w@nker.  Will try and squeeze a run in around Manly in the am.

Monday, August 11, 2014

Monday natter

Out at lunch for an easy plod with Tucks, MC, Springer, JW, Erikakaka, Superstar Renee, Elle, Crossy, TKS and a host more.  Of course chatted about the race all the way and analysed everything to minute detail.

Loved it.

Cut short for 11km.

Sunday, August 10, 2014

City to Surf - 25th in 46:11

I was fairly psyched for this.  After last Saturday's result, my sole aim was to hurt myself.  I basically wanted to be in the mix with Tucks, CT and Barts at some point of the race, if only to be able to contribute to some conversation in the marquee over a beer later on.  So we set off at the usual mad pace and at the William St tunnel I thought I must be ahead given how fast I was travelling, only to see Barts about 20m ahead and CT ahead further!  I was with Quentin and Ollie Lord, but down the hill to Rushcutters relaxed and stretched out and passed a good clump.  Robbie cameast though and looked super smooth as ever.  Caught Barts going down to Double Bay and was pleased to at least be in the mix.  Then CT was coming into sight and caught him over the hill before Pier Restautant.  Decided to stick by my rule to hurt myself so rather than tuck in I started to push the pace through Rose Bay.  We had a good group here and were travelling well but very quickly.  

Then Heratbreak Hill started.  I'd been pushing really hard and basically went lactic very quickly on the hill, watching Quentin and Ollie Lord just drift ahead.  I seemed to drop about 30s a km and seriously considered how I was going to finish this race, but was aware that CT and Barts hadn't come past so must be struggling similarly.  This race is hideous.  You go so fast early on, slow down massively up the hill then try to regroup and hold on as best as you can.  I regrouped going past Kincoppal and started running with Mark Warren, a top quality runner coming back from injury.  I knew that the moment I relaxed the boys would be catching me so every moment was spent trying to push on and hurt further.

Went through 10km in 33:13 and thought that they must have put the marker in the wrong place, but started to get excited about a time.  Then comes the long drag through Vaucluse/North Bondi where there is no one on the side of the road, Quentin is 100m ahead, Mark Warren is 10m ahead and I'm starting to waiver.  Told myself this is the moment to man up, so dig in again to catch Mark.  I'm with him by the downhill and the long sweep to Bondi begins.  Some chap from Box Hill Harriers sweeps past us at 12km and I'm thinking, if he's come past us so quickly, Tucks, Barts and CT are likely to do the same.  So hit Campbell Pde and put a huge effort in up the hill, pumping the arms with one final surge.  Catch another chap here, hit the corner and start sprinting thinking I can't let anyone come past now.  Hear Mikey, LJ and Elle screaming from the sideline for a final lift and cross the line absolutely chuffed.  

Turn to see Tongey, Tucks, CT and Barts all coming through one after the other and thank my lucky stars I didn't have to sprint in with them.   I'd have been desperate and not sure I'd have had the balls to make another effort.  I was absolutely spent.  The hammie just held on, did a jog along the beach with Q and Jamie after and had to cut short as it was too sore.  

Run of the day to Q.  Fantastic result and one none predicted.  Next best result for me was Renee's, running a 55:xx and almost beating Greta and Erika.  She's come on so much recently.  Macca and Fats also ran good PBs.  Crossy also had a great race, building all the way through to run a 47:01.  Also need to mention Sonya who ran a big PB in 57:xx and Lisa who dipped under the hour for the first time.

Then came the chat and the beers.  A great day.  Got a bit emotional when I got home.  I think the kids were a bit bemused.  Here are some photos.

Q and I at the start of Heartbreak Hill.

The boys post race.

7 hours later.  Things starting to get a bit loose.

Saturday, August 09, 2014


Headed out mid afternoon down to Rushcutters and did 8 x 200m sprint strides to test the hammy.  Generally ok.  13km all up.

Planned for a nice quiet evening but got home to discover the house full of kids and Kirst's friends.  She then started opening all my best wine as they'd run out of booze so I had to join in.  Not the best prep the night before the night before.  

Looked back over my C2S results when pondering it yesterday.

2001:  61:13
2002:  pulled out
2003:  pulled out
2004:  50:25
2005:  50:11
2006:  48:10
2007:  48:01
2008:  46:34
2009:  Injured
2010:  47:13
2011:  46:56
2012:  London Olympics
2013:  46:42

Never been wholly satisfied with my runs at C2S other than in 2008.  Let's see if we can knock off my longest standing PB.

Thursday, August 07, 2014

Comp time

Just 13km nice and easy over the C2S course today to Rose Bay and back.  Me, Tucks, Quentin, Crossy and Big Kev. 

But this morning was the big draw.  Tucks, Muz, Jeet, Enda, Timmy and myself turned up at Chifley Tower (timely so I could order a nice bacon & egg wrap to ease the hangover) to make the draw for the most elaborate team competition for the C2S ever.  8 teams, 5 grades with each team taking a runner from each grade (got it?!).  A few laughs sorting it out (and the team names).  Harder to predict than I thought with a few names not so recognisable from Grade E which will swing it.

Chairmans Selection is the reliable team, with first 5 from me, Jamie, Angus, Birchy, Adam Murray and Caroline Sweeney.  Will certainly keep things interesting after the race.  There'll be some calculator action and mad calls to verify times!

Ice Ice Baby

Wednesday - 14km very easy with Barts, Ellie, Kanser!, JW, Jeet and others.  Testing the hammie, was OK until towards end when it tightened a bit.  Back on the ice pack at work after.  Then out in the evening for our EOFY drinks.  Here's me dominating the pool table:

Sunday, August 03, 2014

Easy Sunday

Caught up with Macca, Ben, Jamie, Justin and Quentin for the same run as last week (although I skipped meeting them at the pool so I was about 2km shorter).  Easy pace all the way (4:31 average).  Knee/hammie was very sore from Collaroy onwards. I was hobbling towards the end.  Munching on Voltaren for the first time in a couple of months.  Need to sort it out.  

Just shy of 31km in 2:18.

NSW Short Course XC Champs - 13th in 25:38

Couldn't psyche myself up for the one.  Got there, did a jog warm up with Tucks, said hello to all the usual quality ANSW crowd - Richie Roberts, Robin W, Geoff Arnold, Dean.  Striders had a quality O35's team of CT, Tucks, Fats and myself.  So strong in fact that I think we would have come 2nd in the Opens.

Set off conservatively partly because I was wearing my trainers.  Struggled around the corners for grip so took them gingerly.  Left hammie was a bit sore on the short, sharp hills. CT raced ahead after 500m.  I was about 50m adrift of Robin with Tucks and Fats behind me.  Same on the 2nd lap with Tucks catching.  He overtook me just before the final lap and never looked back - catching and overhauling Robin and CT.  Our gaps remained about the same - I finished 15s adrift of CT and 9 adrift of Robin.  Pretty non-plussed about the result.  Fired me up for next week though.  It was 4s quicker than last year.  As my 5km TT on Thursday was 2s quicker than last year maybe that's about right.

Big week and the hammie is sore.