Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Week 9 training and breaking out the HR monitor...

I was feeling pretty tired after all my activities on Saturday, so I ended up taking two days rest. Also I had some knee niggles and the start of a cold, too many reasons not to run.
So this morning I got a copy of "Heart Monitor Training for the Complete Idiot" in the post and I read a couple of chapters during my lunch break.
I use a Garmin FR305 on pretty much all my runs and I always take interest in what my max HR was during the run, but that's all. So I've decided to use the HR monitor to my advantage.
At the start of the book, it gets you to guesstimate what your max HR is based on a formula. I worked mine out to be 183 bpm. I'll do a test tomorrow to see what it actually is and use that number instead.
From the 183, we can get our Recovery Ceiling (70%) and Threshold Floor (85%). So, my Recovery Ceiling is approximately 143 bpm. This means that on my recovery runs, I need to keep my HR below 143 - not easy, as I found out!
I went out for a run and I changed the display on my Garmin so I could see the HR number easier. Within 2-3 minutes I had gone up to 144, so I had to slow down. Then I was jogging up a slight hill and my HR went up to 145 - argh! Time to slow down again. All in all my average pace for the 6.3k run was over 7min/k, which I found quite uncomfortable to keep. I kept on wanting to burst out and do a sub 5min/k pace. But, I decided that I would continue the experiment and my HR only hit 145 twice and stayed under 143-144 for the entire run.
Apparently, on the easy days (recovery runs), I'll be building up my aerobic fitness and burning fat, whereas on my hard days I'll be working on my anaerobic fitness and burning my glycogen. At least that's what the book says :-)

Time will tell....

Eoin

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Week 8 long run & Oxfam Trailwalker

My long run for today (Saturday) was to be about 20k. Last week I did it along the bike path at the side of the freeway, kinda boring. So today I decided to do it on the sealed road in Lane Cove NP. I was up at about 7am, had my usual breakfast and got to the NP by 9:30. I had a few jellies and a 1L hydration pack with water in it. I set off on the sealed road, but it quickly turned into trail. I kept going but wasn't sure I wanted to go too far on the trail and was thinking about the best time to turn around and find a road again.
Then, I saw four runners coming towards me, so I stepped off the trail to let them by. As it happened, I recognized one of them from DailyMile! So they stopped and we chatted for a few mins and I asked if I could tag along and they were more than happy to have the company.
So we kept going on the trails, which led us under a low road bridge. Being second last in the group at that time, I saw it and made a comment along the lines of "I'd better duck for this one". Right then, Andrew ran straight into the concrete bridge and nearly fell backwards with the impact! He went down to the ground and started to try and stand, but I told him to stay where he was. He had blood coming from a cut a few inches back from his forehead, so we got him to sit for a few mins and it stopped bleeding. Then we went back to the park's toilets and he was able to clean the blood off, while we topped up our hydration packs. He seemed happy to be jogging/running, so we started off again, keeping a good eye on him.
The guys were doing a 100k run from the outskirts of Sydney, along trail as much as possible, to the city. We had a good chat along the way and they are a great bunch of guys that I hope to run with again.
At about the 13k mark, I had to head back to my car so I said goodbye and good luck to the group.
I stopped at a service station and topped off my hydration pack with a bottle of Powerade - much needed! I kept going along the road but wanted to get back on the trails. Unfortunately that is where I got lost and ended up about 9k out of my way. I asked a little old lady for directions and when I realised where I was I walked the rest of the way, as my legs were tired and it was a warm day.
Run total was 23k and weekly total was 48k.
I went home, showered and went to bed, as I had a busy night ahead of me...

Oxfam Trailwalker 100k 2010:
I volunteered for the TW a few months ago, it's an annual fund-raising event that 500 teams of four take part in - but not all finish. I was given the job of "Check In/Check Out Coordinator" on Checkpoint 7 from Saturday 19:00 to 03:00. I arrived at 18:30 and got briefed by the people ending the shift. They had been quite busy, as the weather had been good, so teams wanted to get as much ground covered as possible. The first teams had set off at 07:00 Friday and the winning team was already finished in 12 hours 8 minutes! When my shift started there were less than a dozen teams left to check in at CP7, which is just over 82k into the race.
The sun had already set, and it was getting cold, with the night time temps dropping to about 8 degrees C (there had been some frost the night before!). It looked like our shift wasn't going to be too busy. We could tell from the monitoring application who had checked out (to go on to CP8), who was staying for a while with us (for food, liquids, sleep etc) and who was still to come. When my shift started, all teams had left the previous CP, but the average time for the 10k trail was 3-4 hours. Bearing in mind that the teams left had already done 70k and had done about 30 hours of walking/running!
When the teams came in, we could see the beams from their head lights in the darkness and we started cheering them on. They all looked very tired and a lot were limping. Some of the teams had people retire due to fatigue or injury or just not being able to go any further. One of the rules, is that if a team has only 1 or 2 people left walking, they must join another team of at least 2. So from time to time we would get a team of 3 check in, 1 retire, and the others would have to stay until another team was leaving. Safety was critical. The team in last place checked in with us at 22:30 and they were really exhausted. Their support crew got them coffee and soup and some food (laid on at the CP). Then they decided to sleep for an hour. While they were sleeping, we started to break down the CP leaving just the minimum running to support the last team. We had a tent with 2 Physiotherapists, a tent for St. John's Ambulance, a "Meet & Greet" tent for teams and support crew, and the control tent with radios, computers, safety equipment etc.
The last team woke and refilled their water bottles/hydration packs and I checked them out at about 00:20 and we all cheered them on their way. They left CP7 after 34:30 hours of walking, over 20 hours after the first team had finished the course.
As an update, the last team finished in 46:38.

Our shift was meant to finish at 03:00, but as our job was finished, we left some of the crew to break down the equipment so we could get some sleep!

St. John's Ambulance tent - more of them than there was of us!

"Meet & Greet" tent


Checkpoint control tent.

I probably won't be in the area to assist with this for next year, but if I am I will...or maybe take part in it :-)

Take care,

Eoin

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Week 8 update...

So yesterday I did a speed session. It consisted of a 10min warmup run, then some sprint training:
8 x 100m starting at 80%, walk back to the start and repeat, getting faster with each sprint until the last is at 100%.
For most of the sprints I was getting 18 sec, but for the 6th I got 16 sec, which is my fastest yet! My last two were at 18 sec, as I think I was too tired to go any faster!
After that I did 12 x 30 sec at 80% and 30 sec JR. I was tired after the sprints, so these could have been faster. I'll have a longer break in between the sessions next time.
At the end I did a 10min warm down run. Total of just over 6km for the day.
Today (Thursday) I was going to do a 10k relaxed run, but even before the start both calf muscles were tight and I knew I would be hampering my Saturday long run if I pushed it. I also found a blister at the tip of a toe on my right foot. Not sure how long it's been there, but I'll probably burst it later. I was in two minds, but Barbara and Lisa on DailyMile appear to have swayed me :-)
I ended up doing a relaxed 5k run to give me 25k since Monday.

If toes/feet or blisters gross you out then don't look at the picture below!

It's not exactly life threatening, but it's enough to cause irritation during a run.
I may be tempted to video myself bursting it...but probably not, as I don't want my blog to get some sort of adult only rating, ha ha ha!!

Eoin

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Week 8 training

Well, here we are in the middle of my 8th week of training for my second half and my first full marathon. After my long run on Saturday (20k plus a 3.8k cool down jog/walk), I took Sunday as a rest day. My legs were a bit heavy, so just as well.
On Monday, I couldn't find any more excuses, so I did my hill reps. Here's how it went:
10min warm up run, relaxed,
8 x 85m sprints, starting at 80% and getting faster with each sprint, finishing with 100% on last one.
SR of 2 mins,
Hill reps: 30sec run uphill, turn around and jog back down, do that 5 times, take a 1 min SR and then do another 5 hill reps.
Followed by a 10min cool down run.
I think my last 85m sprint was about 14 seconds, but that's not accurate.
On Tuesday I was due to do a 10k relaxed run, but I didn't fancy running on the bike path again, so I headed for Lane Cove National Park. The plan was to run along the sealed road in the park, but I ended up being drawn to the trail and ran along the rocks and trees and river. Unfortunately I had to do this after work, so by the time I got just over 2k in the light was fading. Not having my headlight, I turned around to make it just over 5.2k. It was an amazing run, and one I'll repeat when I get more daylight hours, probably at the weekend. Might bring a camera on that one too.
Today I'm hoping to get a speed session in, just have to figure out where!

Later,

Eoin

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Week 7 long run

Ok, so my plan for the weekend was to rest on Friday - which I did, then long run today and see how I feel on Sunday, but probably no running.
Last night, Friday, I took it easy, had a good carb rich dinner and went to bed by about 9pm. After a busy week and finally being able to unwind I ended up getting a 10 hour undisturbed sleep, almost unheard of for me! So when I woke this morning I was refreshed and mentally ready for the run. I had a good sized, healthy breakfast and gave it about 90mins to settle. When I started getting my gear together, I was planning on taking one of my hydration packs, the 2 litre. When I was filling it, I saw it had a bad leak where the hose meets the bladder. I started working on it, but out of my frustration to get going I ended up leaving it and filling my 1 litre pack. I had it almost full of water and put a bottle of Powerade in the pocket along with two GU gels and a small bag of jelly sweets. I put the pack on my back and by the time I got to my front door my back was wet from a leak out of the bladder. I took it off and had to change my t-shirt, it was that bad. So to plan C...I got my fuel belt and filled the water bottle with water and put the jellies in the zipped pocket. I carried the Powerade and squashed my GUs into the loops on the fuel belt. Not ideal, but it meant I could keep hydrated and fueled for the run.
So I headed off to pretty much the start of the local bike path along the side of the freeway and after about 4k I was feeling good and had settled into the run. The fuel belt kept on shifting my t-shirt upwards over it and it made my belt rub against my back, which was quite uncomfortable. I ended up drinking my water faster than normal, just to lighten the load on the belt to keep it in place.
I took my first walk break on a hill at just over 8k and had a GU and filled my (now empty) water bottle with the Powerade. I decided to carry the water bottle until it was about half empty and then put it back in the belt. I ended up taking 5 or 6 walk breaks on hills, but none of them was longer than 40 seconds, so they didn't put a big dent in my pace. After a few more Ks I saw a side road that looked quiet, so I took that road and kept going. After a while I noticed that I was running past the MacQuarie Hospital - never saw it before, but now I know where it is! I ran another 2k or so and turned at about 10.7k, back the same route. It was now the middle of the day and was pretty warm. In no time at all I was back on the bike path and getting low on fluids. I stopped outside a service station and filled my bottle from the outside water tap, probably not a great idea as it tasted a bit funny...
Anyway, I kept going and was feeling fine, and was having lots of happy thoughts. About the 18k mark or so, I started getting pretty fixated on my distance, and kept checking my Garmin every minute or so. I had to keep telling myself to not check it, as I had a fair idea when I would be hitting the 20k mark, which was my target.
Shortly after, I started to think about why people run, why I run, why do I do long runs, what I was trying to achieve, why do I keep going etc. It wasn't self doubt, but I'm not sure what kind of feeling it was. I started to think of other people, and the reasons they have given for running. On DailyMile there was a challenge recently that a lot of us took part in and I was reminded of it. The challenge was to run 26.2 miles (marathon distance) over the period of a month to remember Dom, who was terminally ill with cancer. The challenge wasn't difficult, but it was done so we could be thinking of him and sending out positive thoughts. Sadly, Dom lost his battle and died recently.
One of his friends on DM posted a 10k run recently and said that he dedicated it to Dom. I thought about that during my run and started thinking of who I would dedicate a run to and why. I have lost some family members and friends to cancer, as many people have. One of my friend's fathers is currently diagnosed with cancer and is fighting a losing battle and he knows it. Just over twenty years ago I lost my own father to cancer. I still think about him every day and miss him. Around about this time on my run I started welling up inside, to the extent that I found it difficult to breathe. Physically I was fine, but emotionally I just couldn't get these thoughts out of my head.
So I have decided to dedicate my first marathon, in about 10 weeks, to the memory of my father. Not in a sad way, but in a "look what you have helped me to achieve" way. I think he'd like that....

Anyway, I ended up going just over 20k and being distracted so much at the end that I got totally lost! I started walking in the direction I thought was right but I wasn't sure. I stopped to ask directions and the guy said, "over that way mate". Really, so helpful, I was already going "that" way. So I started running again and asked another guy and he was a lot more specific. I was still about 2k out of the way, but jogged or walked home, covering about 3.8k in total after the main run.
I had my protein drink, water, bananas and did stretching. My calves were tight, probably due to low electrolytes. I'll do some research and see what I come up with. I'll be taking it easy the rest of the day and will do a walk tomorrow, maybe a swim.

Take care,

Eoin

Friday, August 20, 2010

Week 7 training update

So here we are at my week 7 training, still 10 weeks from my first marathon and 4 weeks from my second half marathon.
After buying my new Avia's on Sunday, I took them out for a relaxing 10k on Monday after work. I used the 2k walk home from the office as part of my warm up, got home, straight into my running gear and hit the streets!
I'm still not too familiar with the area, so I ran over to the freeway and along the bike/pedestrian path until I got to about 5k, turned around and headed home. I got to the 10k in about 61mins. The Avia's felt great, no problems at all!
On Tuesday I did a relaxing 6k run on the bike path in the opposite direction which took me through some wooded areas (must bring a head lamp next time!) and eventually back to the far side of my town. I got a bit lost during the run, but that was part of the enjoyment too.
Wednesday I did work on my core/abs and hip flexors. I was trying part of the P90x abs workout. I could do all of the exercises, some for 20 reps, some only 10, but I did some of each. I liked it and will try to include it each week.
Yesterday I did a run with a running club based in a local sports shop (where I bought the Avias). It was my first time running with them and I didn't know what to expect. As it turned out I was the only one who showed up, so Andy (who works there) went on the run with me. I said I didn't mind if we did 5k or 10k, so we just chatted and ran and ended up doing a little over 10k. It was a warm-ish night with a bit of a breeze and a great run. Also the first time I had ever run with someone else (apart from races of course). Today is Friday and I will most likely not run today, as I am planning a long run on Saturday and I have to work most of Sunday. Hoping to do about 20k on Saturday. If I get time and feel ok I may do about 5k on Sunday, but I'll see how I feel.

Take care,

Eoin

Sunday, August 15, 2010

My runner collection is increasing!

A year ago I had one pair of runners for days when it wasn't raining, and a pair of boots for when it was. But the runners were cheap and just for casual wear and workouts. Today I have three pairs on the go at once, all explicitly for running. How did that happen?
When I started to get more serious about running early this year, I bought a pair of New Balance 1225s (pic below). They are very comfortable and have seen me though about 500k including my first half marathon. But I just walked into Rebel Sports, tried on about three pairs and bought them purely based on comfort.

Fast forward to about two months ago, and I had been having issues with my right knee. Unable to pin the cause down, I decided to get "properly" fitted in a running store, so I went to Athlete's Foot. They were quite helpful and watched me walking up and down the shop and said, "Yes, you are pronating with your right foot". On that basis, they persuaded me to buy a pair of Mizuno Wave Nexus 4s and insoles (the insoles alone were $50!). They felt pretty good walking up and down in the shop so I bought them and tried them out. I did a 5k run in them with the insoles and got a blister. The insoles were making my feet sweat so much that the front part of my feet were almost soaked. I stopped wearing the insoles. Then I started using the Mizuno's for runs up to 8-10k and found that I was slapping the ground as they are a size bigger than the New Balance ones and I found it uncomfortable to correct my footfall in them. They have been relegated to walking and short/relaxed runs only. They have about 60-80k on them now.
So during this week, I have been having the same knee issue come back, so I started the hunt for my "correct" runner once again. I went online and quickly found a running store not too far from me that does a gait analysis with cameras. Once they had filmed me running barefoot and shown me how I was running and what was good and bad about it I tried on about 8 different runners (all neutral by the way) and was filmed running in each. After each short run up and down the store, I was shown the film clip and we chatted about how that particular runner made my gait change, what was good or bad about it and also how the runner felt to me (very important!).
I think I spent almost 90 minutes in the store in total, trying on runners, running for the camera, discussing each runner, trying the next pair etc. It was then down to two pairs, Nike and Avia. I had a really tough decision, each was making any necessary corrections, and each felt good, but in different ways...
So I ended up going with the Avia's:
The colour is definitely a departure from the norm for me! The store I was at is called the Footpoint Shoe Clinic and I found the staff very knowledgeable. I am a bit of a knowledge nerd when it comes to my hobbies, so I was asking a LOT of questions about shoe types etc, but they were able to satisfy all of my questions without hesitation - quite impressive!
The store also has a running club (free) that goes out every Thursday evening, so I'll be joining them this week and testing out the Avia's in the meantime - here's hoping!
For someone who isn't much into shoes, I'm getting quite a collection...
Take it easy...

Eoin

Saturday, August 14, 2010

How I hydrate while running

Ok, so I've been asked what I use for hydration on different distances. Fair question, so here we go, with pictures!
On short runs (warm days) about 5-10k, I'll use my hand held Nathan waterbottle below:
I love it, as it has a zipped pocket for gels and keys etc. For runs/races of 8k or more, I'll take my Black Wolf fuel belt. The waterbottle sits at your back and there's a small zipped pocket for gels/keys too. The pocket isn't that easy to reach, but I've got used to it:
For races with aid/water stations, I recently got a Hydra Pouch. I find it very tricky drinking from the plastic cups while running and am now getting compettive enough (with my own times) to not want to walk while drinking:
It clips onto your belt or waist band, but you have to carry it when there's any water in it. Good idea though!
For longer runs, where one water bottle isn't enough, or long enough so the fuel belt will be bugging me, I have a small hydration pack. It holds about 1 litre of water/gatorade and I can refill it at water fountains:
And I recently got a 2 litre hydration pack for even longer runs (more than about 15k), or when I don't know if I'll be able to refill the pack on the run. I haven't tried this one out yet, but I'm looking forward to it :-)

Both hydration packs have chest straps and pockets at the back. The small one has an elastic chest strap (good idea!) and a purpose made iPod/phone pocket with a water resistant hole for headphones. The larger pack has a chest strap and belly/waist strap, but they aren't elasticated. It has two pockets, but nothing made for headphones. I'll do a write up after I get to use it for real though.

Hope that's enough. I have a knee niggle, the tendons behind my right knee are a bit tight today and yesterday, so I've taken a couple of days off. Hopefully I'll get a relaxed run in tomorrow!

Eoin

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Week 6 training

Well after the City2Surf I went straight into Week 6 of my training program. It was trimmed back a bit after doing the race though. Monday was cross-training, and I managed to get a 3 day free pass to a very nice local gym, so I made good use of it!
Weekly cross training:
Stretching
30 situps
30 press ups
Bike in gym for 30mins, incl intervals
Stretching
3 x 30 Tricep extn with 10kg
3 x 30 Lat pulldown at level 75 (weight wasn't marked and I don't think 75 was lbs...)
3 x 10 barbell curls with 20kg
2 x 10 lunges with 20kg
3 x 10 squats with 20kg
3 x 10 tricep pull down with 25kg
Also some kettle bell exercises using a dumbbell

Tuesday I was to do an 8k run, and as it was raining most of the day I used the treadmill in the gym, although it took me a minute or so to get to grips with it. Did most of the 8k at 5:30 pace.

Wednesday (today) I went back to the gym and did:
Stretching (lots)
30 situps
30 pressups
8k on treadmill, first 2k at 6:00 pace, then went at 5:30 for 60sec, 5:00 for 60sec, 5:30 for 60sec, 6:00 for 60sec etc until I had about 2k left and did that at 6:00 pace.
Stretching (lots)
Then 2 x 10 tricep extn with 8kg each arm
2 x 10 kettle bell exercise (don't know the name) each side
2 x 10 lunges with 17.5kg.
Been feeling very unimpressed with myself these few days since the race on Sunday. Not sure why though. I'm meant to be doing interval training tomorrow and resting on Friday, but I may take a couple of days off and do a long run on Saturday instead. Really starting to feel that my half marathon and marathon will be slipping out of my reach if I don't keep up the training though...


Eoin

Monday, August 9, 2010

City2Surf race review

Well this was my first City2Surf and in some ways I was lucky, as I had been put in the Green group, so I would be starting a bit earlier than most. First off were the "invited" runners, then the Red group (I think) and then Green followed by another three or four groups. All in all 82,132 runners, making it the world's largest timed race!
The largest race I had taken part in before this was the SMH Half marathon with just over 10,000 entrants, so this was 8 times bigger! Mind boggling!
Well, I had been tapering all week for the 14k event and prepared my gear and packed a bag the night before. I went to bed at 20:00 but found it difficult to sleep. The alarm went off at 06:00 and I got up for breakfast. I was in a bit of a rush having my food, but I'm not sure why, I had two and a half hours before the race start.
Anyway, I finally got my ass in gear and got out the door. Public transport was free for race entrants all day, and as the train is about 3 mins walk from my house it wasn't a big decision to leave the car at home!
The train was pretty full at about 07:15, just with runners & walkers, pretty cool. I got there and stashed my backpack in the truck to be taken to the finish line at Bondi. After that I just went straight to the start line. It was a bit squashed, so a warm up jog was not going to happen. I was able to lift my knees to my chest as I was standing, but no more room available. Just before the start we all took off any outer warm clothes and flung them to the side, they would be collected and given to charity, which is a wonderful idea!
When our group got to start it took a couple of minutes before I could run, as there were a LOT of people in front in my group. When I did start running, I could feel the timing chip on my right runner clipping my left foot, which had been ok when walking. I thought about stopping but decided not to. Then at about 1.5k I felt my right lace come undone and looked down to see my timing chip bouncing down the hill behind me!! I raced after it, against the oncoming runners and grabbed it. Then I crouched down behind a rubbish bin and put it back on - securely! Off again and a lot happier.
There were some live bands along the course, the first being a Guns 'n' Roses cover band on a hotel balcony. They were playing "Welcome To The Jungle" as I ran by, pretty apt!
The aid stations were very well manned, with the first at about 3.5k with water and then every 3k or so, alternating between water and Gatorade. I think the Gatorade was made a bit strong as I kept getting bloated after drinking it - won't do that again. I didn't bring any water bottles or gels, as I wasn't doing a fast race and was able to take all the water I needed.The really annoying thing I found about the race was that there were a lot of runners content to push/shove/elbow and cut you off. I was running along and drinking some water when a girl apologized to me and then cut me off, pushing my arm and spilling my water all over me! She apologized in advance, so why couldn't she just NOT cut me off?!?
Anyway, I kept going and got boxed in a few times and then at the 8k mark a girl in front of me tripped on a plastic cup on the ground (the cup was from an aid station). I stopped and helped her up and she was ok, so we both started running again.
The views were excellent coming into Bondi and I stopped my Garmin as I crossed the line for a time of 80mins and a few seconds. I was kinda hoping for under 75mins, but with the crowds it was next to impossible.
I really enjoyed the race and meeting up with friends after.

Would I do it again?
Only if I got into the first starting group, otherwise NO.

As an update, here's the official stats from the race:



Take care,

Eoin

Friday, August 6, 2010

Statistics...damn statistics!

Ok, so here I am, 12 weeks out of my first marathon (Auckland, NZ) and I'm curious as to the time I'll be able to finish in. I'm not entertaining a DNF by the way.
As it's my first, I'll be happy with finishing. But, I'd like to figure out the correct/best pace to go out at.
Of course I'm hoping to start slowly and save something for the business end of it. So armed with my recent PB over 5k of 23:24, I plugged that in to the McMillan calculator and it claims I'll finish (if everything goes according to plan) in 3 hours and 48 minutes. To be honest I think that's pretty quick for a first time, showing an average pace of 5:25/k.
The calculator also shows that I should be finishing a half marathon in 1 hour 48minutes with an average pace of 5:08/k, again I think it's a bit fast, but I have the Sydney half marathon coming up in about four weeks, and I'm hoping to finish in less that two hours, so that will be a good test.
I'll update the stats again after that one!

Take it easy,
Eoin

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Three days to City2Surf...

Well today I was meant to be doing a relaxed 5k run, but moving into a new apartment took priority. Also I strained a muscle in my back lifting my new fridge, so probably best to rest it. I'll see a physio tomorrow about it and if I'm ok, I'll do tomorrow's run. That is scheduled to be approx. 5k, doing interval training, which I missed last week due to just being busy!
I'm looking forward to the City2Surf now. It's really getting close. Last year my cousin (Salena), was trying to get me to run it with her, but I wasn't even running then. So we ended up both running the SMH Half Marathon last May and she came in around 2:00 and I was in at 2:08. So it'll be good to race with her again.
I was just informed that there are over 80,000 registered to run the City2Surf this year, so once again it'll be the largest timed run in the world. Adding to that the fact that this year is it's 40th anniversary and it's something I really couldn't miss out on!
However, with that amount of runners/joggers I seriously doubt that I'll be able to get a good run out of it, so I'm looking at it as a fun training run. I have the Half Marathon coming up in Sydney and my next goal is one I was going to leave until next year as the Sydney marathon would be too close for me.
Then I was looking at the Auckland Marathon in New Zealand on October 31st. Initially when I was looking at the Auckland Marathon about four months ago I saw that it was filled up, but I couldn't find another marathon in this part of the world that would give me enough time to train and not be in the summer months. Then I discovered that as I'm not based in NZ, I can register as an "International Entry". They usually have about 1,500 places reserved for this type of entrant. So I sent off an email and when I got a reply the next day they were only too happy to get me signed up! So I have entered for the race and booked the flights. All that is left now is to get the training in :-)

First things first though, City2Surf is going to be a ball! Hope to see some of you there.

Eoin

Sunday, August 1, 2010

A hard weekend's training

When I decided to take on this new training program for my running, I knew it would be using "medium/hard/light" intensity weeks. I am ok with that, so I thought, yea, I can handle a little pressure. So yesterday coach said to run a minimum of 6k, but a little more if I felt like it. Now I didn't realize just how well coach knows my mentality, but he knew damn well what I would do!
So I set out with my hydration pack and a couple of gels and ran for 12k, then started a walking recovery. After less than a minute I got bored and started to run again, giving me a total of 14k...just a little over 6k I think you'll agree!
Then, last night it was my cousin's birthday party (she's also a runner). So I went along and had a few beers. I was careful to drink plenty of water before I went to bed, and to hydrate myself all Sunday too.
So when I was talking to coach today about what run he wanted me to do the conversation went like this...

Coach: Before you tell me how far you ran yesterday, know that you have to equal it today.
Me: Well you said to do over 6k...so I did 14k...
Coach: You're going to have a fight on your hands. Remember to run when you can, walk when you have to.
Me: Right let's see what happens!
Coach: Today's lesson is about running on depleted resources, which you will be doing after yesterday's run!

...So I filled my hydration pack, took 3 gels and set off. I had always wanted to run to La Perouse, so this was a good chance.
I'm getting used to removing the hydration pack, getting a gel and put the pack back on while still running. But on the first time I must have hit the stop button on the Garmin, so it missed about 4k before I realized and started it again.
Just when I got to La Peruse I saw a water fountain and filled my hydration pack. That was a huge relief, as I would have plenty of water for the return journey!
When I set out it was sunny and warm, but when the sun went down it quickly got dark and chilly. The last 30% I was really pushing myself and had to walk some hills that i would normally have run easily. I was really glad to get back to Randwick (even though it had started raining) and lay on the bed for a few minutes before having my protein drink and more water. It was only when I went onto dailymile and mapped my route that I realized that I had run a total of 19k! That's my longest training run to date and also my toughest!
So, over this weekend I've ran 33k, for the week my total is 46k and for the month of July the total is 98k.
Time to start tapering for the City2Surf next Sunday, although I'm treating it as a training run. I doubt I'll be able to get a good pace with about 75,000 other runners there too.

Take it easy!
Eoin