Friday, October 31, 2014

Very easy

Very easy 10km with TKS, Pommy Paul and Sonya around the wharves on a stunning day.

So battle resumes tomorrow at the Lane Cove 10km with Barts and Neil, with Quentin being thrown in for good measure.  Looks like Hoey is out though.    Tactics will be very different to Wednesday night.  Hang on and hope basically.

Thursday, October 30, 2014

Running with Champs

So I turned up late to the Rushcutters 6 x 1km set which I was just going to jog in any case.  Latched onto Elle for the first (2nd) rep seeing Wildman pushing upfront with some chap on his shoulder.  Who could this be?  Quentin was 20m further back.  Barts also taking it easy?  I was confused.  Finished the rep to say hello to Holt Hardy!  Where has this fitness suddenly come from?

For the younger members of the audience, Holt and Steve were both pushing for Australian selection at the Sydney 2000 Olympics - Holt in the 1500m (he's a 3:38 man at his best) and Stevie in the 3000m Steeplechase.  Both narrowly missed out, but are class acts and both getting some form back.  Thurston's we knew about.  Holt's was a surprise.  Turns out he's aiming for the JPMorgan race.  Who would have thunk it?  Gary Howard take note.  This isn't the cowboy race you always claim it to be.

Jogged around chatting to Barts and Charlie.  Nice and easy 10 all up.  A few beers with Charlie tonight with Durante promising a show but failing to deliver.  Old habits are creeping back in.  Maybe Timmy still has a chance.

Good to see LJ back out there again.  And Happy Birthday to TKS.  

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Rozza 5000m TT

And so, I decided that the answer to the conundrum in the last post was to wind it up with 2 laps to go and hope for the best.

And that's how it went.

Turned up tonight the usual bag of nerves.  Not sure why I rev myself up so much for these track time trials.  Conditions were pretty good, a bit of wind but temperatures were about 18C.  The only issue was the big group doing 800's at about 4:15 pace which we would have to navigate our way through after their coach refused to ask them to run in lane 2.

Barts, Neil, Jason and Rich Mullaney all showed up, so it was a small but quick group.  Not sure why it's not more popular.  I still think a quick 5km does wonders for your fitness (and confidence).  Paulie Hannell and Greek George kindly showed to timekeep so i wouldn't be making the mistake I made against Quentin last time out.

Off we went and Barts goes to the front.  First lap - 72s.  Second lap - 72s.  Third lap (according to George) - 72s.  Even in my oxygen depleted state I figure he's reading the top line of his iPhone for lap times which is just repeating the first lap! Sure enough, it wasn't until lap 6 that we deviated from 72s according to George!  Having said that, we did go through 1km quickly in 3:01.  I overtook Barts at this stage and led from then, but with Barts right on my heels the whole way.  Going into 3km, I'm aware of two people behind, have a quick look and, sure enough, Jason is still hanging on.  All doubts go through your head at this stage - I'm doing all the work, they're both cruising, I'm going to blow and they're going to sail by.  But at some stage Barts shouts out "how many to go?".  I've got no idea, and tell him so, but start to think he's finding this uncomfortable.  I knew nothing would happen until 2 laps to go.  So with 1km to go I start to think about picking it up.  With 2 to go I start to make a concerted effort. With 600m to go I'm aware a small gap is created, so hit a lap to go and really start to push, especially down the back straight.  Knowing Barts has a great kick finish, all I'm thinking is that I want to make him work really hard for this.  Barts often talks about just closing his eyes and going all out towards the end of a race, so with 150m to go, and still with a gap, I do the same.  The legs are wobbly but I hold on.  There may even have been a fist pump.  15:26:15 to Barts' 15:26:80.

Stoked with the time and PB.  You must always celebrate PBs.  Jason held on very well for a 15:48 and looks so smooth running 3min kms. Neil ran a PB less than 2 weeks after a 2:27!  Rich M is heading the right way with a 16:45.

Here's the splits:

And here's the squad:

By the way, there's a new Blog on the block, and it's good.  Check out Hoey's. 2:35 man and low 34 10km with plenty more to come as he has youth on his side.

Easy HuRTS


Turned up just to jog the 2 x 20mins in prep for time trial tonight.  All up about 12km including 2km warm down, chatting all the way.

So CT is out of tonight's 5000m TT.  So far, just Barts, Jason, Rich Mullaney and TKS are confirmed but we'll see who turns up.  I'm guessing Barts will employ very similar tactics to our State 10,000m race back in March.  So how do you beat a guy:

(a)  who is in good form;
(b)  who has a better sprint finish; and
(c)  who is likely to stick to your back the entire race?

Monday, October 27, 2014

More 400's

Well Timmy bailed.  Despite all his good intentions and even mentioning on his own blog post yesterday, he comes up with; "you could have given me more notice!" this morning when I text him.  I'm almost willing to put the house on Durante now.  This made me think as I was running over that we refer to people as a "soft cock" or a "hard ass", but we never use the opposing adjective to the same noun.

So I wandered over to Rushcutters solo.  Marked out a rough loop, which was probably about 2s longer than last Thursday's.  Then threw myself into it.  Plan was not to kill myself on the reps today because:
(a)  running solo, I couldn't be arsed; and
(b)  wanted to feel in control and concentrate on form.
Reps were mostly 78s (i'm guessing 70/71 for the 400m) with one 77 and a couple of 79s.  All of a rolling 2 mins.  Felt pretty good at the end.

11km all up.  Right knee a touch sore but I see the Tiger tomorrow am.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Easy Sunday

10km around Nolans then up to Fairlight to pick up the car from where we'd left it last night before going to a wine tasting party.

I picked the Reds but didn't know my Rieslings from my Semillons or my Sauvignon Blancs.

Kirst has come down very rapidly with suspected pneumonia.  Straight up.

Saturday, October 25, 2014

And again...

Same 30km Saturday route, this time with Barts, Justin and Craig.  Very tired early on, couldn't get the kms under 4:30.  Legs still sore from Thursday and it was humid with the temperature rising this morning.  

Picked it up from Narrabeen bridge and actually felt more comfortable running 4min kms than 4:30's.  All up 2:11 something with the final 10km about 39:30.  Had some mad chick beeping her horn at us both on the way out and back.  Turns out it was Elle.

Then watched Charlie play cricket but had no time for brekkie.  Got home and bonked on the sofa.  Far out, I was gone.  I was brought around by Bec's pancakes with lemon and sugar.  I was like Uma Thurman in Pulp Fiction, suddenly had energy to do my chores.

Might break the sugar fast tonight and take tomorrow off.

Friday, October 24, 2014

Sore, sore, sore

My groin.  Not from the double up running session yesterday, but from frog kicks doing frantic breaststroke.  Got out today with Jeet, Big Kev, TKS and Bruce for 10km around the wharves.  Big Kev is getting fit and no longer runs easy, so Jeet and I dropped off when he started running 4:15's.  I was going to up stumps at 5km, but gradually felt better and got through the 10km.

Beers on the ferry home and a couple at Manly Wharf on a beautiful Friday evening.  Charlie D was regaling us of Barts' drunken stories from a Morgan Stanley client drinks last night.  Apparently, Barts is really a 2:21 marathon man but hasn't had the opportunity to prove it.  Unfortunately I have the task of trying to keep up with this prodigious talent tomorrow for 30km.

Manly in the evening:

111km for the week.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

400's and a Biathlon

Oh happy days.

Keen not to miss my key 400's session in the build up to JPM, I turned up at lunch to a big crowd (must have been 40+) for the changed session of 400's at Rushcutters. Reg Bartley Oval was being guarded like Fort Knox, so we congregated on the football pitches adjacent and marked out our 400m circuit.  This involved 2 recce's, not least because of the sunbather at the 180m mark.

So eventually we marked out at 440m circuit (don't ask, I was flustered) and we're off.  Barts pushed the pace early.  I pushed the pace towards the end.  All done around 72/73 (probably 66's/67's for 400m) with Quentin blasting the last for a 69/70.  Solid session. Lengthy warmdown with Barts and J-Fen for 14km all up.

Then tonight it was the biathlon.  I'm busy at work.  I was tired from the lunch session.  But I couldn't face the abuse I'd get from Timmy for a no-show so I front up with 'Lil Jimmy, Sonya, Angus, Paulie H and Sam J for the torture fest of 4km running then a 300m swim.  Got boxed in early, then opened up with one random fella joining me.  He stuck with me until 3km then dropped.  I did 12:36 (near path loop) with 6:31 at halfway.  Then jumped in the pool.  Did first 50m freestyle then reverted to breastbroke.  1, 2, 3 blokes come past (one being Angus) but where is Timmy and 'Lil Jim?  I'm getting desperate, but make the final turn and have a quick look to see clear water behind me.  Oh Happy Days!  Try 3 strokes of freestyle, realise it's hopeless so revert to breaststroke and finish on the slightly annoying time of 19:00.

Then beers in my favourite pub (The Tilbury) with the boys and overall female winner Sonya before heading home.  Great night.

The transaction:

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Wednesday with some talent

Rocked up today to quite a sizeable group for a Wednesday, with Jeet, Big Kev, JW, Clarkey, Saffer Jonathan and others and a random American girl.  Turns out she's a client of Jamie Palmer's who he recommended to run with us today.  Angela someone.  She ran 2:46 at Chicago last week chasing a 2:43 qualifier for the U.S. Olympic trials.  Let's just say she looked like she could run.  Through halfway in 80:11 holy cow.

So we all speeded up to try to impress her.  Ended up doing 14.5km way too quick. 

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

HuRTS 1km reps

So the usual session is 14 x 3mins but with JPMorgan approaching a few of the lads were keen on changing the session to 10 x 3mins (off the usual 60s rest) and pushing them harder.  This basically works out as almost 10 x 1km.  

Well it was a who's who of the HuRT Squad today with Wildman, Tucks, Barts, CT, Quentin, Muz, Crossy, Ollie Lord, Jason R, Big Mikey H, Hoey, Enda, MC, Timmy to name but a few.  I was feeling pretty fresh having run long on Saturday and having an extra day's rest.  But best of all the new Mizuno Wave Riders had arrived in the post and, jeez, I felt bouncy for a change.  Made me realise how hard the old trainers had got after 3500km.

Wildman went off hard on the first rep and tried to keep him vaguely within reach with Barts tucking in behind me.  From there it was hard to tell how everyone was faring as we were all starting and finishing at different spots.  I knew I was travelling quickly though and by 8 I was cooked so just ran the last 2 through.  I was just about reaching 1km for each rep.  Average pace for them went as follows:

3:03, 3:01, 3:02, 3:04, 3:01, 3:02, 3:00, 3:04, 3:26, 3:22

Very happy with that.  Will continue to work on the speed as the base is there.

Long warmdown with Tucks, Quentin, Barts, CT and Slapstick for 15km all up.

Monday, October 20, 2014

Old school

Monday route but around wharves to avoid the increasingly dangerous Hickson Rd.  Ran with Andy, MC, Clarkey, JW, Renee, Elle, Ray and a host of others including, wait for it, Durante!  He only went and ran 15km.  But most impressive of all was his athleticism shortly after the turn when he hurdled a boom gate.  I kid you not.  It was the most athletic thing I've seen since Wildman threw a pool ball on a tin roof and leapt up a staircase 4 at a time.  I doubt I could have high jumped this boom gate with a squishy mat on the other side.

I immediately backed him to beat Timmy at JPMorgan.  Form is temporary.  Class is forever.

Oh, the 15km averaged 4:22's as I spent the first 2km at sub4 pace catching the group.

Finally, for the record, those on the HuRTS distribution list will have seen Timmy giving it out yet again claiming I'll be flapping about in the pool in the biathlon on Thuraday trying to avoid being chicked.  Well, to prove the hypocrisy of the man, here is a text I get from him not 24 hours previously claiming I have to give HIM a handicap!

Sunday, October 19, 2014

Cream Crackered

Had a few beers and curry last night with the Manly running boys (and girl) so was a bit ropey this morning.  But no rest for the wicked as its Maggsy's birthday today so I had to prepare for a gaggle of 7yr old girls to entertain.  Managed to squeeze in 10km around Nolans and Passmore at lunch, bumping into Macca as I did.  Favour was returned as I then bumped into him on his run 2 hours later.  Actually felt pretty good today after the first couple of km.  45mins. 

Thank God this day is almost nigh.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Same again Saturday

Out with Craig Mc for the same run as a fortnight ago.  Great running conditions this morning, cool, cloudy but no breeze. Felt great today - pace very comfortable chatting until 20km then increased the pace a bit to close to 4min kms for the final 10km.

All up 30km in 2:09 - 4:19's.  Macca would be happy.  He doesn't like doing his long runs over 4:20 pace.

Friday, October 17, 2014

Early doors

Ran to work, first time from new house.  It's exactly 2km further than the old house, which is interesting to no-one but me.  Ran with Dicky but bumped into Ryan early on.  This meant we were going way quicker than I'd planned even before I met Dicky.  I've worked out that Dicky and I are incompatible because we both like to lead.  This means the pace just gets quicker and quicker.

All up 15km on an even hillier route than before in 66:59.

100km for the week and hard fought given work and travel.  Happy.

Desperately waiting for my new Wave Rider 17's to arrive.  I bought these bad boys on Feb 2nd, so I've done around 3500km in them.  They're looking a little worse for wear (check where my dodgy achilles' rubs) but have lasted incredibly well. I normally get 1000km in trainers before having to replace.

Thursday, October 16, 2014


Missed the HuRTs session due to work so took myself out at 2pm and did it solo.  No room on the pitches next to Reg Bartley Oval (which is closed for maintenance) with kids playing school sport so ran around the track on the outside of Reg Bartley, jogging to close the loop and start the next rep each rolling 2 mins. 

Felt a bit long and GMap has it at 425m:  Reg Bartley Track

Reps went:  72.4, 73.1, 72.9, 73.3, 73.2, 72.4, 73.6, 72.4, 72.4, 71.5

So that's averaging 68's which is about what I expected first up.  Will be easier when I can run with people.

Long warm-up and warm-down for 14.5km all up.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Wednesday SLR

A bit over 14km today with Crossy, Kanser (yes, you read that correctly), Big Kev and JW.  As usual on a Wednesday, Crossy and JW were not hanging around and after a couple of 4:10's early on, I begged them to slow down.  Poor old Kanser didn't know what had hit him.  My legs were shattered again and had the short choppy stride going on.  Ended up doing a bit over 14km around the wharves averaging 4:16's, so we didn't slow down that much.

Continuing the theme of Melbourne Marathon stories, I received an email forwarded this morning which shows correspondence between Beaches Ben and Striders President Joe.  I'm guessing Joe was reaching out to Ben to thank him for helping one of the older Striders runners to the finish at Melbourne.  It's a great read and shows the true camaraderie of the Marathon:

"I blew up at 24km aiming for a 2.52. A training partner ran past at around 27km and tried to encourage me to stick with her [Ed:  this is Erika]. I told her that I was done; my rubber band was stretched. Thankfully she went on, ran her PB and to her race goal of 2:58. My plan B was sub 3hrs and that went at around 29km; my rubber band had snapped.  I was in a world of hurt along St Kilda Road and thought about jumping in front of a tram to end it a couple of times.  I may have even been delusional as I swear I spoke to Craig Mottram as he ran passed me pacing a buddy of his.  I walked through one of the last aid stations along there and was given some support by another fellow runner with a friendly tap on the shoulder keep at it.  Plan C came into effect which was to finish what I had started, just finish and I told myself that time did not matter.  It was around 37km just before the rise of the Tan that I then decided to take with me anyone else who I could convince that the clock did not matter anymore.  So if I saw someone walking or standing I went up to them and told them that they were coming with us and that I'd be there by their side and we would finish this together.  I would tell the group that "time didn't matter, concentrate on form and let's keep going together".  I think I picked up about 4 or 5 people and Graham would have been one of these.  I ended in 3:14:48 my second slowest marathon from 9 attempts, only slower than my debut in 2005.  Funnily I ran 17 seconds faster in Canberra in March this year pacing 3:15.  I'm ecstatic to hear that Graham achieved a Boston qualifier with a small amount of encouragement from me when I was broken, well and truly broken.

Please pass on my contact details to Graham and congratulate him on his stellar debut Melbourne marathon and Boston qualifier."

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

HuRTS 4 x 10mins

Still felt crap after last night (and have stomach cramps this evening) but main issue was very stiff legs. Just couldn't turn them over today, although they felt better each rep as the blood started flowing.  Did the reps over the old 10min route but starting from St. Mary's Gates.  First was ran with Clarkey just in front of Mike.  Second picked up a bit.  Third ran with Tucks just about reaching the Opera House Gates (3:28's so not bad).  4th starting a bit closer and try to sprint at the end to hold off a flying Wildman but failed at that too. 

But another session done.  If I can sort my legs and tummy out I don't think I'm in that bad form.

Fats ran well today, as did Muz and Barts.  Muz is a dark horse for a great run at JPMorgan.  He's been slowly getting better and better each week.

Long warmdown for 17km all up.

Was emailing Macca this afternoon asking about his run in Melbourne.  This was his response.  It's a great report that shows his mental strength and positive approach.  Well worth a read.

"Hey mate, after I saw you guys last Tues I went and did a Bikram class in the evening to get a good stretch on the old hips and legs and just didn’t feel that great. Next day I was just knackered and had a splitting headache but went for a recover run just to loosen the legs. Felt like crap so pulled the pin and went home. Took 2 days off work and lay on the couch as just felt lethargic. Should’ve known as Anna and the kids had been under the weather the week prior.

Started feeling bit better on Sat after a good rest and chest was Ok so flew down and put the feet up on the couch most of the afternoon. Still felt a bit flakey but not as bad.

Sun morning made sure I had a Redbull and Panadol early and then straight off to the start. Prior to the race I made the commitment to run at 3.40’s and if I fell apart well at least I gave it a shot. I was just praying I didn’t get the migraines I’d been having latter half of the week.

First 5k I was fine and started catching a few packs in front. Got to 10km bang on 36:39 so perfect pacing so far then everyone around me dropped. The next pack was around 400m ahead so no chance of bridging that gap. I just put the head down and after dropping a few gels basically ran the reminder of the race solo with the next pack behind consisting of Justin, Heydo and nice little group about 90sec back.

I got to halfway in 1:17:39 so again bang on track but running along a very long flat road with no one in sight was hard and after a few more km’s I found myself slipping to 3:45’s then 3:48’s. At the far end turn Heydo had bridged the gap and now only about 50sec behind so either I was slipping or he was running smart in a good pack. It was a long slog back up to St Kilda rd on my own trying not to slip any further. At 32km I started to struggle and was a bit dizzy but only a Striders 10k race to go so just concentrated on form and had my caffeine gels. The km splits were now 3:50’s and I couldn’t let them slip any further so really had to dig. It’s a long grind along St Kilda Rd and quite a lonely stretch with only a smattering of people clapping as you go by.

Around 34k got caught by one of the Syd Strider Twins and he went ahead. Couldn’t stay with him but at least a bit of company albeit for 30sec or so.  Into the Bot gardens and 37km could see a struggling Q and ran past him giving each other some encouragement. Next thing Heydo comes screaming past then another bloke at 38k when I had nothing. Tried my hardest to stay close but the wheels were falling off big time.

40km couldn’t have come soon enough and it was just mental from there on. Got a stabbing pain in my gut (think it must have been from all the nurofen I’d be loading up on since Wed) so just praying it didn’t stop me. There was no 41km marker and next thing I know I’m in a daze with 200m to go. I had a quick look at my watch and after seeing 2:38:01 went all out up the hill to get close to 2:38:30 and try and prevent Enda from Irish bragging rights. Wasn’t to be but just happy to finish to be honest.

Reflecting on the race I am pretty happy. I ran the pace I wanted to until halfway. I pretty much ran a time trial for 28km and came 2nd in the 45-49 AG, beaten only by Dave Tonge.  I could have sat back in a slower pack but who knows, may have ended up with a slower time. The legs held out most of the race and didn’t cramp and I was strong enough throughout the race.

I may or may not have gone faster if wasn’t sick leading up to the race but not going to ponder on that considering 4 out of my last 5 marathons I’ve been sick in the week prior.

It’s good to say I can break 2:40 as a 45 year old so all in all I am stoked as it’s my 2nd fastest ever marathon.

Some good runs out there but a good few also disappointed including Q no doubt and Justin just giving up at 29k. He’ll be the most upset I’d imagine. 

Looking forward to the curry night and a few beers on Sat as wasn’t feeling great on Sunday to celebrate. You still coming?"

Monday, October 13, 2014

Getting it done

But at what cost?

Had to work hard all day, couldn't get out at lunch.  Eventually got to 7pm, by which time a massive storm had rolled in.  Asked myself whether it was worth trying to run 2 hours now?  Told myself that's what losers say.  So headed out for the usual lap of Centennial before running home.  Felt really good until Spit Junction (20km) then gradually started to struggle before feeling absolutely crap when I got home.

It was hilly, I think I was going quite quick to start with, I've had a dodgy tum since Phuket, but no idea why I bonked so badly really.

Still, 28km in the bag.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Back home

Arrived at lunchtime after 3 hours sleep.  Worked in the backyard all afternoon so snuck out feeling pretty knackered.  Must have been the sleep deprivation that made me do a trail run of all things.  Went out around Manly Dam.  Would have done a circuit but had to turn back after the Allambie Rd exit as there were 4 helicopters with those water carrying things bombing an out of control bushfire, and smoke heading my way.

About an hour (11km).

Well done to everyone who ran Melbourne today.  In these days of Ultrawalkathons, it's often overlooked just how hard it is to push yourself to the limit in a road marathon.  Massive respect to you all.  Wish I could be chatting it over with some beers on St Kilda Rd now.

Friday, October 10, 2014

Phuket Day 2

10km in the morning sweating out the booze.  Needed the loo the whole way.  At least it was good core strength training.  No elephants today.

103km for the week.

Thursday, October 09, 2014

Phuket day 1

Out at 8am for 15.5km.  Through the beach resort of Laguna, overtook an elephant, out onto the minor roads heading North adjacent to the beach, through a few sleepy villages, said hello to plenty of guys sat in Asian squats beside the road seemingly watching the world go by, back to the resort.  By now it's 100% humidity and topping 30C.  Then got chatting to a chap from Penrith Tri Club.

Averaged 4:21's.

Did I mention I overtook an elephant?

Post breakfast recovery:

Wednesday, October 08, 2014

HuRTS Progressive Tempo

Slightly lower crowd than usual with Melbourne Marathon this weekend but still a few guys like Macca and Barts using the session as a final tune up and Hoey, Tucks and Muz keeping things honest at the front.  

Started very easy chatting to Barts.  Paced picked up towards halfway and, to be honest, I put quite a bit of effort in on the way back feeling good all the way and as though I had the "extra gear".  Back in 43:46 which showed how much quicker it was.  Pretty spent afterwards though.

Long warmdown with Mikey chatting about everyone's predicted times on Sunday for 16km all up.

Monday, October 06, 2014

Happy Mondays

Public Holiday and another beautiful day.  More time fixing the back yard.  Got out while Charlie was playing cricket for 12km around Manly, dodging the Jazz Festival crowds.  Probably the hardest 12km of the year - I was absolutely knackered.  Celebrated every sub 5min km with a high five to myself.  I'd be depressed with it but for the fact the body otherwise is niggle free so life is good.

Sunday, October 05, 2014


With the majority of the Northern Beaches crew running Melbourne next week, it was just me and Craig Mac this morning for the usual route, albeit starting and finishing from my place.  Spent all day in the garden yesterday so was pretty knackered but we got through it chatting all the way, mainly about everyone's chances next week.

While there's been a lot of talk about Irish Marathon performance of the year, everyone seems to have overlooked that the English performance of the year is up for grabs.  With Dicky Green's 2:52 in Rotterdam the only marker, it's a relief that Heydo is running next week or, God forbid, Timmy would have a chance at that particular title.  And we'd never hear the end of it.

30km all up in 2:12 something (4:24's).

Current favourite song:  Timmy Trumpet

Saturday, October 04, 2014

Homebush Striders 10km - 5th in 33:31

So, up early doors and out in the Landcruiser to pick up the Manly running crew.  First up, Ben and Grumpy Justin, then Dicky and Macca.  Grumpy Justin first complained about the radio, declaring that he couldn't abide talkback radio (despite the fact we were listening to Nova).  Then he complained about the heated seats (I find they warm my hammies nicely).  Plainly he wasn't eagerly anticipating the race ahead.

Lined up after a 4.5km warm up with the boys and realised the front 5 was likely to be exactly the same as last month, with Wildman, Neil P, Uncle Dave and Alex Rogers all toeing the line.  The gun was about to go, Timmy positioned himself right in front of me so I manhandled him out of the way and we were off.

Now, when camping with Toby Cogley last week, he was extolling the virtues of taking caffeine tablets before a race so today I gave it a go.  I took 2 No Doz half an hour before the race.  Alex and Steve stormed off with Neil chasing and Dave and I chasing him.  At 1km Dave starts to close so I go with him.  We hit the hill and I'm catching everyone, feeling magic.  At the top of the hill I decide to give Steve a scare by taking the lead so he responds in anger.  At this point, the caffeine wears off, Neil, Dave and Alex come past and I start panting.  They pull ahead, I try to regroup, and from here on i'm running solo.

It must have a pretty quick first 2km.  No idea what I went through 5km in but I'd guess 16:20 as I slowed down A LOT on the second lap with no one to chase.  Every corner I'd have a sneaky look behind to see if Lewis and Hoey were catching but fortunately the gap was fine.  Regrouped a bit towards the end, particularly after seeing Timmy enter the horse track when I was coming out and thinking I had a chance at the 3:55 head start bet.  Was pretty happy with the 33:31, only 2 seconds shy of my course PB.  I hate this course and never run well on it.  It always picks up any humidity (and there was plenty this morning).  But less pleased about going from 2 to 5 in the finishing positions compared to last month.  But to be fair, I've had an average couple of weeks training in that time and the other boys are getting better and better (Neil ran a PB today which is sensational on that course and in those conditions - watch out Chicago).

Timmy held on for a 3:45 gap - another close one in our history of fair bets.  Stevie and Enda - take note.  Stevie ran a great 32:18 holding on to the win from a fast finishing Dave.  Will be great to see what he can do with some more training.  Other notable runs from Dicky in 35:59 and a slow starting Hoey in a low 34.  He hasn't run many 10kms and will learn the need to attack from the start.

Another 4.5km warmdown before coffee and muffins in Manly with Ben, Macca and Slightly Less Grumpy Justin.  He still wouldn't allow WSFM or KIIS, and I didn't dare twiddle the seat warmer knob, but at least he was slightly more conversant (albeit frightening the family away from our table with his fruity language).

The Northern Beaches crew:

Dicky, honorary beaches man Stevie, Yours Truly, Ben, The Grumpy One and Macca.

In form man Neil, flanked by a couple of pretenders:

Friday, October 03, 2014

Friday ramble

Up early doors again (3 days running, you can tell I've been off booze all week) for 10km around Manly on another beautiful morning.  Enjoyed it.

100km for the week.  Showdown with Wildman at Homebush tomorrow.  He's giving me a 30s headstart.  He should be giving me 60s based on my post illness form.  But I'll front up and try to gain a bit of respect by limiting the gap from a total blowout.  More interesting is how I'll fare against Hoey, Enda and anyone else who cares to show.

Thursday, October 02, 2014

Passmore Reserve Fast/Floats

Well, I think the last time I did this session was 6 years ago.  There's a reason for that.

No word from Macca and Justin was a no-show (although I rumbled him on Manly Beach on my warmdown!) so just Erika and me this morning.  Did a 3km warm-up, quick chat about who's going to win The Batchelor, then straight into it. It's 13 laps of a 650-660m circuit, 1 float then 1 fast, etc.  Laps went:

2:23, 2:08, 2:31, 2:02, 2:30, 2:02, 2:32, 2:02, 2:29, 2:00, 2:30, 2:00, 2:27.

Interesting how they stabilise after the first 2 reps (float being too quick and fast being too slow).  All up 29:42.  4km warmdown for 16km.

Back then I was quite a bit quicker overall (29:03) but the fast laps in general were a bit slower but the floats were quite a bit quicker.  Christ, I trained hard back then. No wonder my times were so consistent. But also little wonder that I got a chronic achilles problem.  Check out who I outsprinted in the State Road Relays on August 3rd 2008!

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

Wednesday MLR

Usual 17km route with Justin, Dicky, Q and Erikakaka.  Legs stiff and heavy after yesterday's session but got into it after 8 or 9km.  Thankfully temperatures much cooler today.  Lots of talk about the marathon.  Erika finally getting some confidence [and I am]* predicting some big wins over Timmy, Ben and Jeet.

*Erika demanded I print this correction.  She said nothing of the sort.  It was just Quentin, Dicky, Justin and me who made this prediction.  Slack typing on my part.  I apologise for any confusion caused.  She, of course, still claims only to be aiming for a Sub3