Sunday, February 28, 2016

Getting longer Sunday

Out earlier than usual with Craig, Macca and Barts at 5.50am for a few extra km before meeting the crowd (Lewis, Tim and the Cap'n) at 6.15am.  Psychologically it feels easier to tag the extra kms on to the start of the run rather than the end.

Felt very flat today after yesterday's efforts.  Just dragged my ass around listening (without contributing too much) to all the banter.  Picked up the pace at the end trying to catch Macca and it was nice to stride out a bit.  The ocean was magic afterwards, cooler than of late with a southerly swell and pounding surf.  All topped off by the Brekkie Burrito Wrap in Troubador which even came within 15mins after Barts started eyeballing the waiter.

35km done in 4:28's.

Saturday, February 27, 2016

Park and Fart

4km jog to the start of Parkrun.  First km was an all time slow but then legs started to feel ok albeit achilles was a bit tight.  Took my Saucony Fasttwiches but only intending to run in them if legs felt OK.

Met Macca and Jamie (with pram) and some young fast looking kids at the start.   On seeing the kids, decided to wear the racing flats.  Set off and the kids sprinted off as you'd expect.  Gave me a good pace to chase early on though.  I was solo from 300m in.  First km in 3:05, then 3:11.  Told myself at the start that you make or break this course in the 3rd km so pushed hard and was happy with a 3:15. Then a 3:13 and finished with a 3:04 after crossing the bridge in 14:00 and knowing a sub16 was on the cards.  Official time was 15:53, equaling my PB but easily my quickest run solo.

Watched Macca come in 2nd just over 17mins and just ahead of Toby who made a wrong turn.  Both ahead of the young guns.  Jamie ran a super quick 17:52 with pram.

Few mins rest, then a 1km jog with Jamie before starting the 19min fartlek (1min on, 1min off) before jogging home.

18km all up.


Friday, February 26, 2016

Easy hour chasing the gang

Out at sparrows fart but unfortunately 3 or 4 minutes too late.  Erika and Justin (who were later to sweep up Burkey and Lewis) had given up waiting so I tracked their route hoping to bump into them on the way back up Manly Beach.  Charlie D was staring soulfully out at the ocean with his daughter and informed me they were only 300m ahead.

But they never appeared.  Strava had them running back past me between Manly and Shelley but bizarrely missed them.  I think they hid.

Got up to North Head and eventually bumped into them on the Bower.  All up 12.5km in the hour (4:49's).

Need to change my shoes more often after recent achilles issues so will start by chucking all the old ones out.

123km for the week.

Thursday, February 25, 2016

Thursday double heat trouble

AM:  8km easy to Shelley and back.

PM:  HuRTS 800's at Rushcutters.  In 33C temps.  

Had decided with Gary to cruise these.  In truth, having taken Voltaren the night beforehand, I couldn't feel my Achilles.  Been bouncing around all day which makes me realise I've been feeling the Achilles in the background for quite a while.

Cruised the 800's in 2:38/2:39 until rep 7 in 2:31 and final rep in 2:22 (course was a bit over 800m).  Timmy did a fantastic job marking out the route on the perfect Rushcutters surface and providing an Esky full of cold water - really above and beyond the call of duty.

Barts was out front with Hoey not stopping between reps - both looking in great form.

5km warm down with Barts including a dip in the harbour at the CYC - perfect.

22km for the day.

Wednesday, February 24, 2016

Wednesday MLR

Woke at 5.30am.  Got to bathroom.  Looked into mirror.  Saw two piss-holes in the snow staring back at me.  Went back to bed for another much-appreciated 90mins of sleep.

Left achilles has been sore so was tentative for today's run.  Sneaked out at lunch and ran with Kanser and Hoey for 20km.  Achilles managed OK but I think I need some new shoes as current ones are rock hard.

Other than the achilles I felt great today, one of the easiest 20kms I can remember.  Will ditch the hills tomorrow and cruise some 800's at Rushcutters with Timmy instead. 

Tuesday, February 23, 2016

Tired double

AM:  Met Jamie, Darren and Burkey early doors for 16 x 400m off a rolling 2:15.  Marked out a straight(ish) 400m on dewy Nolans grass and off we went.  Well, we headed in what we thought was the right direction as there was this Dickensian low level mist covering the field which meant we had no idea where the finish line cones were.  Just had to follow precious footprints in the grass on subsequent reps.  Here we are emerging:

Mangled 74/75's for the first 10 (I think it was a bit long) then took my shoes off and did 72/71's for the final 6.  Burkey on fire as ever for these shorter reps although he stopped to take photos for the final 2.  This is us finishing off:

Amazing light this morning helped by a huge full moon.

3km warm up and 5+km warm down for 16km all up.

PM:  8km easy from work in 4:32's.

Monday, February 22, 2016

To the Tiger

Ran to Lime Street from home for a massage, my first in months.  Felt much better for it, particularly my left glute/hammy.

15.2km in 4:38's so nice easy start to the week.  Still had Saturday's tempo in the legs though.

Sunday, February 21, 2016

90min tempo

So Friday was a rest day but, given a lighter week, I felt great all day and was itching to get out.  But I restrained myself and took $20 out of the atm to hand over to CT.

Saturday morning rocked up and after numerous emails and an elaborate route setting, I was dead chuffed to see the elites of HuRTS and Striders all out in force.  Barts, CT, Quentin, Hoey, Neil, Robin Vonk and myself were all doing up to 90mins.  Jamie was doing 30mins and Macca and Eoin were doing 4x5km.  Route started at the Passmore bridge and took in a loop of the golf course via the lagoon track, then returned (5km) plus a loop around North Manly Bowlo for 6.15km (via Mapmyrun) but I read exactly 6km on my Garmin.

Great group together bowling along and it really made it so much easier to do with plenty of banter (at least on the first lap).  Occasionally the pace would ease through lack of concentration but someone would soon pick it up to get us back on track.  It never feels wholly comfortable but 3:40's was certainly much more manageable than 3:30's and I was getting through the laps ok.  Her we are at the end of lap 3:

I'd managed to persuade the kids to stand on the bridge and hand out water on each lap.  To their credit they did a sterling job, shouting encouragement too.

Going into the final lap I was feeling good so decided to up the pace to see what we could sustain while still not redlining. That turned out to be 3:30's for that final lap with CT starting to look strong and obviously coming into form.  All up 25km in 1:30:55 (3:38's).

Warm up and down for 30km all up.  Dip in the ocean then Emporio for breaky.  Certainly quick service now all the fickle ex-customers are queueing over the road at Ruby Lane.

Then out in the evening with Macca, the Cap'n, Darren, Erika and Injured Andy for a few pints at the 4 Pines then curry at the Last Train to Bombay.  The Cap'n and I even kicked on to have a hipster cocktail out of a jam jar in some back lane bar.

Rest day Sunday too. That session on Saturday needs to be respected.

Thursday, February 18, 2016

Day 52

500m, 2km, 500m, 2km, 500m, 2km, 500m.  Up at Sparrow's Fart for this unorthodox set.  Each rep has a 500m jog recovery so it's 11km all up.

Met Jamie and Macca at QSLSC. Reps all along the beach to Shelley and back.  First one felt a struggle, middle reps mentally the hardest and I felt best towards the end.  Looked at the watch at 8km before the final 2km rep and realised I needed a 6:37 to get under 36mins for 10km, so that became the goal and pleased to run 3:20 then 3:14.  Ended up averaging 3:36's for the 11km including floats.

Nice shouts from Burkey, Erika and Darren all out on a beautiful morning.

1.5km warm up and 4km warm down for 16.5km all up.

Today is day 52 of my streak. Tomorrow it ends.

Wednesday, February 17, 2016

Easy short Wed

Elongated loop to the ferry wharf in the am.  Big fan of the easy early morning run.  Especially when it isn't to be followed by a hard afternoon session.

8.8km in 4:30's.

Tuesday, February 16, 2016

79 Continuous

Super early start agreeing to meet Quentin, Jamie and Dicky at 5:50am.  This sort of start time is so "not me".  And as such I was 5mins late so the boys had already started.  

Session is 15mins easy, 22mins tempo, 5mins jog, 22mins fartlek (1,2,3,4,3,2,1 off 1min float), 15mins easy.  Simple huh! Sounds complicated but I did this session a number of times early on last year (particularly before SMH Half) and it got me really fit.  Back then I would do the tempo in 3:26's and the fartlek in 3:28's average at my best.  Today it was 3:28's for the tempo and 3:31's for the farts.  A bit off.  Legs felt tired although the breathing was ok.  No Mao-style "Great Leap Forward" is imminent.  I think I need rest to absorb the work.

20km all up.  

Thoughts for today:

1.  I'm getting more into David Bowie.  Unfortunately it took his demise for me to appreciate him more.
2.  Why does everyone call 150 Lashes 50 Lashes?
3.  People must cheat in Pub Quizzes.  Tonight we were in the bottom 6 of 24 teams despite feeling "we did well".  Australian 80's music questions don't help mind.  Working out the anagram of Canasta Scoring Fins was the highlight.  Try naming the last 5 Aussie blokes to win a tennis major though.  Or how many pairs of shoes Imelda Marcos left when she fled.
4.  Where is my Opal Card?
5.  Did Donald Trump really just say that?

Monday, February 15, 2016

Easy eve Monday

9km solo around the city in the late eve.  Easy at 4:33's.  This week looks like a combo of tough sessions and very easy (and short) recoveries.

Sunday, February 14, 2016

Sunday morning

Not huge amount of sleep as were over at the neighbours for dinner.  Usual route (31km this morning in 4:24's) with Macca, Justin, Quentin, Lewis and Toby H.  

Will have a rest day or two next week on instructions from the boss so CT will win his $20.


Hungover.  7km around the back fields at 5pm.  Slow.

Friday, February 12, 2016

Easy commute

Very easy jog into work at 6.30am.  First km was little faster than a walk.  14.8km in 1:11:21 (4:49's).

143km for the week.

Thursday, February 11, 2016

Tempo time

Hour tempo on the cards and Barts bailed saying he was "too tired".  Not sure what that means.  I think it's code for secret training as I saw him at the 3km mark of my tempo with Super Coach Timmy Lindop.

Felt tired from the start and after a 3:30 heading downhill feeling as though I was putting plenty of effort in the signs weren't good.  Gradually got into it.  29:00 at the turn at Barangaroo and back to the start in 57:47 so happy to negative split.  Finished with 16.87km (3:33's) which I was pretty chuffed with in the conditions.

3km warm up and warm down for 23km all up.

Only way i'm getting through this bigger workload at the moment is to constantly focus on the next session and not dwell on what you've just done.  Seems to work.

Wednesday, February 10, 2016

MLR with friends

Too tired to get out in the am so headed out at lunch to find no-one at the usual start spot.  Resigned myself to 90 mins of tedium running solo before bumping into Timmy, Pete W, Champ and Jackie at the OH.  From then on we were joined by Sonya, Asian Dave, Jamie (briefly) and Jerome among others.  Time flew and before I knew it I'd done the 4x hills (withJerome  even joining me for those) and 20+km.

Very tired most of the way though and was head nodding at the theatre tonight despite seeing an excellent play (The Secret River).

Tuesday, February 09, 2016

Two State Tuesday

AM:  Met Jamie and Dicky for 2km solid then 10 x 300m.  2km around Passmore (although the Garmin was measuring it at less than 650m running anti-clockwise?) in 6:24.  Then 300m in a straight line on Nolans.  300m feels remarkably far when running in a straight line.  It was a case of before and after when running in shoes and then barefoot.  55, 55, 54, 54, 54 (then shoes off), 52, 52, 51, 50, 49.

12km including warm up and down.  Then rushed for a flight to Melbourne.

PM (lunchtime):  8.2km around the Tan in Melbourne in 4:30's.

Monday, February 08, 2016

Monday Morning

Out with Lewis for a loop of North Head followed by 4x Oliver St hills.  Took a while to get the legs moving this am.  Going to be a busy week at work so just hoping to squeeze the sessions in.

17.5km in 4:24's.

Sunday, February 07, 2016

Sunday slog

Well, fortunately those who fronted this morning had either raced yesterday (Macca, Justin, Craig, Lewis), had done a hard tempo late in the day (Barts) or had no inclination to run quickly (Tim P).  So we had a relaxing run the whole way averaging mid 4:30's complaining about how knackered we were and taking the piss out of my wardrobe malfunction yesterday.

Beaut of a morning to end in the surf and then on to Troubador after 32.2km.

Can't resist posting this photo of Kirst with Ken.  I think they're in love.

Saturday, February 06, 2016

Sun Run - 5th in 33:27

Woke at 5.30am with all of the previous evening's positive attitude out of the window.  Why am I doing this?  I'm knackered.  How can I run fast in 75mins time?

Met Lewis, Jamie and Charlie at Bike Addiction then Rochey in Freshwater.  We walked the Oliver St hill, trying in vain to keep ourselves fresh.  Jamie was full of fake positivity - an example being "But at least this strong headwind is blowing the humidity away!".  Jogged on.  Walked a bit of the Griffin St hill thinking WTF.  Got to Dee Why, said hello to a few familiar faces (Nick Roberts, Vlad, Tom do Canto, Elle, CT, Scotty) then did a few run throughs.  And suddenly I'm feeling ok and quite bouncy.  Line up and tell myself to stay in touch up the hill this year and not back off too much.  

The gun goes and Tom DC, Vlad and Courtney Atkinson quickly form a lead pack of 3 up the hill who crest only about 20m ahead of a large pack including CT, Lewis, Tom Middleton, Mitch Dean, Scotty, the 2 lead girls (Danielle Allen and Vic Mitchell), myself and a few others.  Then off the top Scotty kicks hard so I follow him, but he keeps on kicking to catch the leaders and I'm thinking this is madness.  So I settle down and CT comes past.  By the bottom, CT, Mitch, Lewis, Tom M and I have formed a group and we get into a good pace.  3:21 first km including the monster hill, 3:06 next km.  Now we're on Parkrun territory and I head the pack for a 3:15 then a 3:13.  We get back on Griffin Rd and straight into the wind so I settle in behind Mitch.  This will become a common theme throughout the remainder of the race.  We hit South Curly and it feels slow so I jump ahead up the hill to the Diggers and try to get a gap.  But there's a reason it felt slow - I've hit a wall of wind and it's a solid effort to maintain pace.  Mitch comes past but it looks as though at least the pack has split.

Do the switchback at Freshie and realise we have split.  We're only 20s behind Vlad and Courtney (TDC is now well ahead) and there's a similar gap to CT and Tom Middleton.  Shout out to CT.  But where is Lewis and Scotty?  

Up the nastiest hill on the course by my old house on Charles St and it's still me and Mitch.  Sweep down to Queensie and I'm still tucked behind him into the headwind.  It feels slow but resist the urge to push ahead.  Was this a mistake?  Who knows.  Wait until I can see the line with 500m to go and kick hard to get a gap.  But sense I haven't dropped him as the picture below shows.  And so repeats the situation of last year.  50m to the line and he drifts past with me having nothing to respond.

Approach Mitch post-race and apologise for drafting behind him into the wind most of the way.  He barely acknowledges me, says "that's racing", and moves on. I think, yep, you're right.  More motivation for the next race.

33:27 is 3s slower than last year but a solid effort in the conditions.  CT is next home and I have to drag him off the road.  I think he's getting his mojo back and he'll be putting the pressure on next time.  Vic Mitchell looked good in Olympic Year to beat Danielle convincingly.  Scotty limps home after pulling his calf early on. Charlie finally makes some effort after Elle (looking in fantastic condition post baby) gives him a scare.

Join Burkey, Charlie and their mate Youngy in Belgrave Cartel for some Mafia Eggs.  Then crash for the day as I'm farked.  Couldn't even mow the lawn.

100m to go:

Not sure what happened to my singlet, but is NOT a crop top:

CT in next:

Jamie has a tough day in the office but always smiling:

Last but by no means least, Kirst chooses the toughest course on the toughest day to run her first 10km post cancer.  Runs just over an hour.  Then turns up to her Sat morning running group thinking they are celebrating the Sun Run with breakfast only to have to do another hour's training session.  Very proud of her.  We'll sleep soundly tonight.

Friday, February 05, 2016

The Bare Minimum

Just over 7km from work very easy at 3pm.  Bumped into Kanser and had a chat.  Looking forward to Sun Run tomorrow, just have to put my head down, not take any part of it easy and hope for the best.

105km for the week.

Thursday, February 04, 2016

Thursday primer

Dark again setting off at 5.50am.  Christ it's only early Feb.  Met Macca and Jamie at Queensie with only Jamie doing the set.  Just 2 x 7mins today as a primer for Saturday.  Wind blowing a Southerly which made the fist rep heading to Shelley a shocker.  3:18 then a 3:17 plus a bit more to make up 7mins.  Circled back to Jamie then the return.  What's happened to the wind, seems to be in our face again!  3:13 then a 3:14 plus a little bit more.

Longer warm down (6.5km) with Jamie bumping into Lewis and finishing with him.  Trying to persuade him to switch to the Tiger.

13-14km all up.

Just bumped into Pete Beacroft while he was running to work (I thought he lived in Canberra?).  Pete was a freak, won the Bankstown 10km in 30:03 and I think he had the Coolrunning 5km record around the Bay in 14:59!  He used to work at Allens and needless to say winning JPMorganCC was a doddle as a result.  Looks as though he'd struggle to break 40mins for 10km now.. 

Wednesday Pinkleaf

Out with Conway, Worswick, new chap Mitch, Rob (?) and Kronie for the usual longer route to Redleaf (7.5km).  Views on the beach at Double Bay were simply outstanding.  Dip in the pool then shorter route back (5km) very easy.

Tuesday, February 02, 2016

Tuesday stamina set

8 x 1km off a rolling 5 minutes today.  The list of excuses runs as follows:

1.  We started at 5:45am.  I don't think I've ever started anything at 5:45am before, other than my beauty sleep.  Had to set the alarm for 5:15am in order to set out the cones on Nolans.

2.  Grass was long and wet.  It was like the Sunderland Cross-Country circa 1987.

3.  It was dark.  It's summer and we're running in the dark.  WTF?

4.  The session was too long to run barefoot.

5.  The session was tough enough as it was.  1km is just that little bit too far.  About 900m too far.

But, Ben, Tim P, Jamie, Darren and Erika all fronted up to do it, albeit only Erika and I being set all 8 with Darren doing 7 and the rest 5.  Went better with Jamie on my shoulder for the first 500m (even better when leading on his last rep).  I ran 3:11, 3:12, 3:09, 3:10, 3:07, 3:14, 3:14.  So slow in the conditions but at least they felt slow.  Tell you what though it was a tough set.  Legs like lead weights at the end - I normally finish these sessions running quicker at the end but not today.  Couldn't get under 5min kms for the 5km cool down.

16km all up.

Monday easy

10km off the ferry, up around North Head and home averaging 4:22's.    Nice way to get home, should do it more often.