Tuesday, March 31, 2015

More of the same

No chance of getting out at lunch so ran to work (same way as ran home last night) putting some effort in.  But when the first km pings out at 4:21 you know things aren't going too well.  It's a bloody tough run to work (more so now I've moved) as I was telling Enda and Jackie O after bumping into them in the City at the end.

57:59 all up.  9 minute improvement on 12 hours earlier and legs rooted, but nothing spectacular there.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Stressed man

Stressful day at work with no chance to get out so ran home like last week.  Felt ok -and that's about it.  67:08.

Sunday, March 29, 2015

Same old Sunday

Huge crew this morning.  As a result, Justin was sweating early on as he had the credit card for getting breaky in afterwards.

Back to the old route and chatting the whole way with Barts, Macca, Lewis, Craig Mc, Jamie, Erika and Darren in addition to Justin.  30km in 2:14 (4:28's).

Nice dip in the ocean after if a bit nippy.  Everyone may have been laughing at my long sleeve top when I fronted up this morning, but they weren't after the ocean  swim.  

Saturday suffering

Couldn't get out Friday but then had another massive night at a leaving party for some friends.  So that was two nights in a row as Ronan's was a 2am finish too.  Not able to cope with that these days.  Just about managed 10km in the late afternoon in 43:58.

Thursday on the Beaches

Up and out early for 4 x 1 mile along the beachfront.  Macca, Justin, Jamie, Dicky and Lewis were there along with Amy, Emma and Anna.  Ran the first with Lewis but he was recovering from sickness and came into a tough session too early.  So ended running the rest solo.  Times went 5:08, 5:09, 5:06 and 5:09.  Hard to get the legs going so early to be honest but did the job.

Warmdown for 13km all up.

Then out in the evening for Ronan's charity trivia night.  Great night all round but foolishly agreed to a $50 bet with Macca with him supporting his man Craig Mc ahead of me at Gold Coast Marathon.

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

MLR that nearly wasn't

Out of bed at 5.50am due to meet at the Boy Charlton at 6am.  Got to Queenscliff lagoon entrance and assumed I had missed everyone.  So ran solo towards and along the beach with a reassessed plan of doing 5km, goin back to bed then running home with Jimmy this evening.

Turned at 2.5km but then shortly bumped into Justin and Erika so turned again and ran with them.  Justin told stories of Shanghai while Erika and I commiserated with him.

17km all up. 

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

HuRTS 45min progressive tempo

Funny old day today.  Got out of the office to find it pretty hot and humid.  But then just as we finished the session the temp dropped and the rain started to fall. 

Made for a tough session with plenty of sweating, particularly wearing a T-Shirt.  Set out with Barts, CT, Tucks, Fats and The Other Manly Tom (TOM Tom).  Felt pretty good on the way out and we turned after 23:15 at the first traffic calming device past the bridges.  I pushed the pace after we turned conscious it would be tough to get back in the time available.

Barts went ahead at 30mins (hitting Alfred St at CQ) with just me and CT left. Started to feel the pace here a bit and we were at the OH gates at 34:15.  10:00 to get back going via the middle path which is solid running, pretty much finishing together.

CT running well again.  Some tired bodies out there today.

Ran 3+km this morning to the wharf and a long warm down with Barts and Andy for 20km all up today.

Monday, March 23, 2015


Ran home from work very, very easy.  In fact, it was Hoey training pace.  One of those runs where you feel better at the end than the start.  Still working out the quickest way home.  Today involved Burnt Bridge Creek where I ran into a massive fruit bat.  That was weird.

Great run by Benny St on Saturday night getting back towards top form with a 13:33 at Melbourne over 5000m (World Champs qualifier) to finish 2nd.


Major hangover following curry and beers with the Manly runners in Freshie.  Top night, but was capable of nothing more than 6km very easy on Sunday afternoon.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Long Saturday

Beers and curry tonight so a long run today.  Met up with Barts, Dicky and Macca with Charlie D joining us in Dee Why for 10km or so.  Solid pace from the off and Macca wanted a fast finish.  Ran with him letting Barts run off ahead.  

Legs were rooted and I struggled to stay with Macca.  Still, 30+km averaging 4:10 so pretty solid.  The B&E roll tastes good after that.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Fit It In Friday

A very easy 12.5km with Kanser, JBo and Bruce.  Got an earful from Kanser slagging off Aussies.  I don't think he realised Bruce was an Aussie.  You'd think the name would give it away.

Hey Timmy, coincidentally I took an office shot this morning.  Here you go:

Thursday, March 19, 2015

HuRTS 10 x 400m

The classic session on a beautiful, if slightly too warm and humid day.  We were teased with the early onset of Autumn.  This was still Summer.

Over to Rushcutters where Timmy had his cones out.  CT and Barts were in attendance alongside a massive crowd for a Rushcutters session.  Had a good chat with LJ on the way over and great to see her back out regularly again.

I felt pretty good today.  I think 3 days virtual rest since Sunday did the world of good as every rep would run the same course of CT and Barts taking it out hard for the first 200m while I tried to hold on then I'd come past and push the pace for the final 200m.  Did the first 5 in shoes looking forward to running the second 5 barefoot. 

Not sure about Timmy's 400m distance markings but we ran them all in 65/66's, the final in 63.

Although I felt fine running, legs feel rooted this evening so I think it was all down to the rest since Sunday.

Had a shock this morning to find they'd changed the artwork in our office overnight.  For some reason, this is what I've been given:

Someone is trying to give me a message.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Wednesday recovery

Very easy run and necessary as my legs are surprisingly still very tired from the Half.  Maybe a bit of jet lag in there too.  Just 11km all up averaging 5 min kms.  Bumped into Hoey and ran most of the way with him, chatting about the pain of Six Foot.  He's vowed not to repeat.  We shall see.

Monday, March 16, 2015

New York Half Marathon

Spent all day yesterday stressing about the prep for this race.  What should I wear?  Should I wear a watch?  How do the corrals work?  Will they have enough toilets?

On the last question I needn't have worried.  I've never seen so many portaloos.  Always one free.  Sydney could learn a lesson there.

In the end I wore my usual kit but did wear a watch.  Threw off my extra clothes into the donation bin at the last minute (a Tommy Hilfiger long sleeve top and a fleece - each bought for only $9.99 yesterday in Macy's - clothes are SO cheap here).

I lined up early and, after some podgy Mexicans pushed in front of me, started about 6 rows back from the front.  The siren goes and it's a bit of a scramble but I get away and into running ok.  An early hill sorts people out and we're through the first mile in 5:28.  A bit slow. But then the pace picks up as I pick up a group of 5.  Second mile in 5:08.  Km splits are all over the place so I give up on the watch other than checking mile (and 5km) splits.

At the top end of Central Park there's a cool section where you run along 110th street in Harlem, come around a big roundabout and back into the park.  Gives you a great chance to see the leaders (all Kenyans) and top Americans like Meb, Bumbalough, Tegenkamp and Ritz.  5km in 16:30 and I'm feeling good.  Then the big hill in Central Park comes, and it's followed by a load of rolling hills.  I come out of the park and our group has split apart.  I hit 10km in 33:40 and I'm floundering, wondering where it all went wrong.  Run down 7th Ave to Times Square (which is surreal) but it's into a headwind and I realise the whole length of the West Side Highway will be the same.  I'm feeling pretty low here, but then my saviour arrives.  He's like a Yank Hoey.  Someone to drag me through the second half.  I jump on his back and immediately we start catching and overtaking all the group who dropped me in Central Park.  Each one tries to jump on as we go past but drop off shortly after.  Down the West Side Highway and as Yank Hoey slows a bit, I take up the slack but, given its into the wind, my turns are shorter than his.  I keep on saying (to quote Farah) "One Mo Mile" before I drop off.  But then we're at 11 miles, I see Freedom Tower and it's all getting close.

Through some massive tunnel and I'm fighting hard here, thinking I can save something by getting a sub72.  Then out in the clear, more cheering by the NYPD and Firemen and over the line in 71:32.

Pleased to have recovered after I thought I was down and out.  A 70:xx is definitely possible on a good course in good conditions.  But this was an amazing experience and that's what I'll mostly take from it.  Everyone in the city supports it.  The hotel porter high fives you when you come back in.  Australia could learn from the enthusiasm everyone shows.

2nd Over 40:

New York #4

Just an easy 30mins on the treadmill as it was pissing with rain outside and not the nice sort of refreshing rain you get in Sydney.

Then caught up with TB for some pasta and red wine.  He fits right in in NYC.

When I was a kid I had this sort of encyclopaedia called "Fact Finder" (actually it was probably one of my brothers) which I was a bit obsessed with.  I never read novels as a kid, just fact books and maps.  I was a bit of a nerd.  Anyway, in Fact Finder they had a piece on a sculpture called "Bird in Space" by Brancusi.  I thought it was really cool as a kid.  So yesterday I wander into the Met and in one of the rooms, there I see "Bird in Space" in the flesh, so to speak.  It made my day.

Saturday, March 14, 2015

New York #3

Stepped out of the hotel in the usual running gear (2 long sleeve tops, full length skins, shorts, thick socks).  Ran 50m, turned around, back to Hotel and put a thick hoody on as well.  Absolutely bitter this morning, -1C but with a windchill to cut straight through you.

But a beautiful day and the usual route but coming back down 6th Ave.  Got overtaken in the park this morning.  Didn't like that.

Good luck to all running Six Foot today - I'll be tracking results from 4pm my time. Go Quentin!  Go Tucks!  Go Fats!  Go Jono!  Go Hoey!  Will be a great battle up front.

Friday, March 13, 2015

New York #2

This time up 6th Avenue (I think it's my favourite), around Central Park anti-clockwise (it's the way everyone seems to go and race direction for Sunday) then back down Broadway to Times Square and home.  

Over an hour today as I took it very easy nursing a hangover but pushed a couple of the hills in CP as some annoying bloke was sat on my heels.  Won't run down Broadway again either.  Too many bloody tourists.

Now reverting to my roots sat in the Cock 'n Bull Pub drinking a Newcastle Brown and eating Bangers and Mash.

Thursday, March 12, 2015

New York #1

Day of travelling yesterday so no run.  Pretty broken nights sleep with jet lag, so easy to get up this morning for a run.  

Rugged up in Skins etc. and set off in the cold running up Madison Ave and around Central Park before coming back down 5th Avenue.  Much better on 5th as it's extra wide.  Reminded me of running when a kid due to the cold - Central Park is still full of snow.  Was fantastic.  Love this city.  Ended up running for an hour.  4:10 pace around the Park (which is hilly!) but slower crossing the roads back to the hotel.

Me on 5th Ave later on:

Monday, March 09, 2015

Makeshift Monday

A bit late out so joined the crew of Bruce, TKS, The No.2 Jordan and Adam at CQ for the usual route - joined by Charlie and Andy a bit later.  Easy pace of 4:40's - 11km.

Very warm out there today.  Tomorrow is going to be a shock to the system.

Sunday, March 08, 2015

New lap of the lake

Out with Macca, Lewis, Barts and Andy on a new route going the back paths to Cromer then doing a lap of Narrabeen Lake around the newly opened paths and back to Queensie.  Top route.  29km slow with all our legs sore from yesterday.

But the dip in the ocean and B&E rolls went a long way to sorting that out.

4:40's I think.

Saturday, March 07, 2015

Striders North Head - 4th in 32:39

Up out and early and, for the first time, rode to the start line.  Well, rode to the bottom of Darley Rd then pushed the bike up the hill.  Didn't want to risk overdoing the glutes.

Bizarre experience while taking some excess clothes off before my warm up when I put my hand on the window ledge of the building where the refreshments are to feel something moving underneath it.  Removed my hand to see a slightly squashed red back spider (biggie too) trying to crawl away.  Panicked a bit, then realised it hadn't bitten me so all good.  But got the heart going.

Massive turn out from the squad and loads of the faster runners on show.  Barts, CT, Criniti, Neil P, Lewis, Quentin, Hoey, Andy, Macca and Mitch Dean all showing up.  But late pull-outs from Enda (queasy tummy worrying about Macca's form) and LJ (dodgy ITB) with knock-on consequences for Birchy.

Plan was to push hard early and work with the inevitable group.  Mitch and Barts immediately went quicker than the rest of us with me, Neil, Lewis, Hoey, Quentin and Criniti in the next group.  At 2.5km Criniti comes flying down the hill outside the kiosk and pushes ahead and I must have subconsciously upped the pace to follow him.  He moves ahead after 300m but it blows apart our group and I'm now running solo.  However, coming back towards the Stone Arch I can hear them catching and Neil and Hoey draw level at about 5km (16:10 I think).  I struggle on the false flat after the arch with Hoey taking the pace and immediately think here we go again. But all I have to do is hang on and allow him to drag me around with his usual even pacing.  Around 6km we must have dropped Neil.  8km I'm blowing very hard up the hill and give up hope, but by the long flat towards 9km I'm feeling ok again.  Push the downhill, get a bit of a break at the Arch and work very hard up the false flat to the finish.

Pleased with the time.  Disappointed to be 20s behind Barts but he is in great form.  Another great run by Hoey and I have to thank him again - 30s PB looking smooth.  Quentin did his usual trick of just holding off Neil and Lewis ran 33:38 behind CT. He should be much further up based on his training.

$20 from Timmy after failing to hold 4:15 and $20 from Enda for bailing on the Irish Challenge means my Striders race entries for the year are paid for in one fell swoop.

Coffee and B&E Rolls after.

This, apparently, is a 3/4 Latte. I think it's a Bondi thing.  The barista must be on secondment from SOTB.

Friday, March 06, 2015

Workday Friday

Holy moley.  Suddenly very busy at work.  

Sneaked out for a run to Edgecliff to buy some new trainers than ran back in them.  Very comfy.  7km and 96km for the week.

Will be looking for a big run in them tomorrow morning.  With CT, Quentin, Neil, Barts, Lewis and Hoey all running, it's going to be very competitive.

I've got a couple of bets.  $20 with Timmy giving him a 4:15 head start and $20 with Enda that my man Macca will reverse last month's result.  Enda is backing himself this time rather than Timmy and I having the bet after Timmy refused to back him!

I reckon it's going to be quick.

Thursday, March 05, 2015

Slack Arse Thursday HuRTS

Woke up with the alarm at 5.30am feeling like death warmed up.  Got to the bathroom, took a look at myself and decided another 90 minutes sleep was the best tonic.

So showed up for the HuRTS session feeling pretty good to be honest for 6 x 1km around Rushcutters.  Quite a good crowd after I'd made a call to arms but I ran solo for the first 2 reps before Barts appeared.  Took my shoes off after 3 reps which made the usual improvement in times.  But ran all reps within myself feeling comfortable.  Times went:

3:12, 3:13, 3:11, 3:08, 3:07, 3:04

Caught up with my old mate Steve for some beers this evening at Customs House which fortunately serves my new favourite Cricketers Arms but unfortunately only in pint glasses.  As poms we settled in nicely as if it were a night in London.  Now paying the price.

Big big BIG race shaping up on Saturday morning with more head to heads than a Bondi speed dating night.  LJ wanted a mention so I shall say this:

1. Head to head with Birchy - my money's on the Shire girl.
2. I'll be impressed if she gets within 90s of Timmy.
3. If Wol breaks 43, I'll buy them breakfast.

I'll post my other predictions when I'm more sober tomorrow...

Wednesday, March 04, 2015

Billy No Mates Wednesday

Arranged to meet the Manly crew at 6am but set off just before 5.45am to get a few extra km in (had to be back early).  This meant I arrived at the Boy Charlton Pool from the opposite direction and was about a minute late but Erika did a Mikey on me and sent everyone off on the dot.  So ran solo in the dark feeling sorry for myself.

Eventually bumped into Erika near Shelley running back so circled back with her for 14km dead flat all up.  Left knee is still a bit sore so was happy to avoid the hills and cut short.  4:37 pace.

Had a few beers with Birchy, Andy and J-Fen last night so to get out and run 14km at 5.45am actually involved a Herculean effort. 

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

10 x 330m

Missed HuRTS due to a meeting.  Had just read an article on the importance of speed training (circulated by the Tiger) so decided to do 10x400m solo later in the arvo.  Then Robdog sends me an email saying, Tommy, do 10x300m with a 100m float instead.

When a bloke as classy as Robdog tells you what to do, you obey.  So jogged over to Rushcutters, tried to work out about 3 quarters of the oval was and set off.  No watch, just ran hard and floated for 10 laps.  Bit of mental pain, seemed to work the glutes well so a good session.  

Jogged a lap and counted chimpanzees all the way rounds.  122 chimpanzees for the sprint section and 163 chimpanzees for the full loop so must have been very close to 3 quarters (330m and 110m).

Jog back to the office for 11km all up.

Monday, March 02, 2015


Late out at lunch but ran into the crew at OH for 13km easy pace (4:28's).  Back of left knee still a bit sore.

Bloody boring day.  I need some pizazz in my life.  Locked in 4:15 head start for Timmy on Saturday morning for $20.  But it's not quite the pizazz I was thinking of.

Sunday, March 01, 2015

Mountains Sunday

26.5km around Leura on a warm warming.  Bloody hilly and, to be honest, I was knackered by the end.  Left hammy was a bit tight.  2:03ish (4:40's).

Then a walk after.

The three sisters.

Tough night last night for the boys in the State 10000m but and amazing time (32:09) by Barts in tough conditions in snatching State Bronze medal.  Everyone else ran nearly a minute slower than what they had hoped for so would be very interesting to see what he would have run on a cool night with a pack.