Sunday, December 31, 2006


Best wishes to everybody for a wonderful 2007. May all your dreams come true! My New Year Resolution is to blog more regularly and remain positive about my health and fitness. Best of luck to everyone out there on fulfilling their goals in the year ahead.
Outside this window I hear thunder rolling - a storm is brewing! Over the past few days Canberra has experienced some rain and storms I believe. Mr B and I have just spent a few days by Cronulla Beach in NSW and it started to rain heavily on our trip home. In Canberra the ground was damp, our new deck was wet and the smell of that beautiful rain heralded our arrival. It's going to be a good year! Have a wonderful night if you are seeing in the New Year and stay safe!
Perhaps tomorrow I will update my blog!

Wednesday, December 13, 2006

I'm Here - I'm Alive and I'm a Week Behind AGAIN!

Hi everyone. Thank you for your nice comments. I'm on nasty medication now which means I can't have any alcohol for 10 days - rats - I have all these Christmas parties happening too! However, by Christmas Day I'll be free to enjoy a glass or two of wine!! Yippee!

I'm going to have to recap very briefly on the last week. I'll go backwards!!

Tonight - Thursday - Track
I opted for the Spiral Handicap tonight as it didn't start until 8.15pm so that gave me a bit more time to continue writing Christmas cards! It was rather fun as three of us were very close together all the way through. Marg and Rosemary were running in the group ahead of me and I managed to catch them at about the halfway point. I really tried hard and after passing them continued to hear Rosemary breathing very loudly behind me. I was therefore very surprised when I finished and saw it was Marg finishing very closely behind me and Rosemary behind her. It was quite exciting being so close together - all three of us are in the same age group!

Distance: 3.5km
Time taken: 17:16
Average pace per km: 4:54
Calories burned: 200
Handicap: 29
Place: 4th!!! (that will stuff up the handicap group!)

Wednesday 13 Dec
Morning - Gym - 6.15am
RPM class - (spin)
This was one tough class - talk about a good workout. It was really hot in the room with all those bikes in spite of the fans working overtime. We had a different instructor and she was very good and make us work so hard. It felt good afterwards!!

Evening - Yoga
I have decided our yoga instructor thinks we are contortionists. We had a whole lot of new "asanas" tonight and they were so complicated. We had to do strange things with chairs upside down and backwards and shoulder bends and legs up the wall. I kept hearing my name as I was being corrected for just about every pose I attempted - "wider stance needed" "hips to the left" "arm further round" - aaaah - I'm sure this must be doing some good. Still, the last ten minutes of the class makes up for all the nasty stretches in the middle (I think!)

Tuesday - Parliament Relays
This was all I did today. I drove to the relays starting at Questacon and was put in a Vets' team. I elected to be the first runner as I knew I was going out to speedygeoff's dinner afterwards. Big mistake!! I was running against very fast runners and it is very demoralising to be beaten by everyone else especially one little sprinter who came up to about my knees!!!

Distance (according to Gandalf): 1.78km
Time taken: 8:40
Pace per km: 4:52 (but I was still last against number one runners)

Later after a shower I joined speedygeoff's training group and our Vets' sub-committee for a lovely dinner at Della Rocca - a delightful little restaurant in Kaleen. I indulged in a few glasses of wine - the last for a while - and it was most pleasant!

Monday 6.15am - gym
I worked on the machines this morning - mainly upper body as I wanted to save my legs for training after work. I didn't feel as strong as usual and couldn't manage to increase my weights - probably a bit weak at the moment cos I'm not 100% healthy but I guess I will improve.

5.30pm - speedygeoff's training group
Welcome back to speedygeoff who has returned after a couple of weeks away from us. We ran our usual warm-up lap of Parliament House then into the rose gardens where we ran shorter loops than last week with short recoveries between each loop. We ran 8 loops then ran a warm down round PH and back to the start. It was a fairly short session which suited me just fine!

Distance: 8km
Calories burned: 590

Saturday 9 Dec - medium run with Graeme's group
I met the Molonglo group at 7am for our usual run and it was lovely to find all the longer distance runners (including CJ) starting with us too. I ran a little while to start with Ewen, then with CJ just chatting before they turned off to run steeper hills up Mt Ainslie as we continued round the base. I started off feeling a bit ordinary and being a little wary but I really felt comfortable today and almost wished I had continued to run with Ewen for his 24km. Next time he runs that distance I will endeavour to join him. Today I just ran the loop. I ran keeping Cathy and Maryanne in sight but couldn't catch them.

Distance: 16.40km
Time taken: 1hr 41mins
Average pace per km: 6:13
Calories burned: 1024
Fastest km: 5:34

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Twenty Days to Christmas!!

Okay, I have been unwell. It's gone on for nearly two weeks now but as it is affecting my energy and running speed I have finally succumbed and visited the doctor. As a consequence I've been on fluids only and been off work for a couple of days. Hopefully I'll gain some energy when I can start eating again tomorrow. I am currently starving and have very little energy. However I will now recap my week to the best of my memory! I couldn't even manage yoga tonight which is a shame as I know it was a restorative session.

Monday 4 December (the last time I trained)
6.15am - Gym - Weights and Machines
Working on Back, shoulders, chest, biceps, triceps, abs and the leg press

5.30pm - Parliament House Group
As speedygeoff has another appointment Trevor took the session tonight. We ran our warm up loop of Parliament House then did the main session as follows:

Run fast for 350m (undulating)
Slow run for the same distance

The aim was to repeat the above ten times. However Maureen, Ewen and I managed eight times (ie 16 x 350m loops) which was quite enough.

Warm down loop back to start.

Total Distance: 11:41km
Calories burned: 680

I found the session long and hard and I even felt quite sick. This made me realise I am not performing as I should and ensured I made that doctor's appointment at last. I am not supposed to run for about a week but I'm hoping I'll be able to run the hills on Saturday once I start eating again.

Saturday 2 December - Hill Run - 7am
We start our run at 7am now that Summer is here, the idea being to finish before it becomes too hot. Today there were about 8 of us to start but most turned at the 6km mark. I ran on for another 1.5km with Debbie and there we decided to turn and run back the same way for a change. It was still an undulating course but I was happy to run parts of it downhill for a change. Debbie is another interesting lady who had back surgery a few years ago and was told she should never run again. She has returned to running and is as fast as ever. She has run marathons in just over 3 hours and is an amazing lady. Some runners do have such inspirational lives. I enjoyed the off-road run, the surface, the hills and the interesting company.

Total distance: 15km
Time taken: 1hour 32mins
Average pace per km: 6:09
Fastest km: 5:11
Calories burned: 942

Thursday 30 November - short run
As I was unable to run at the track tonight because of a work function (dammit) I decided to run in the morning instead. The intention was to run really early and a decent distance but unfortunately my stomach did not allow me out the door until just after 6am and as a consequence I only had time to run the Kaleen block.

Distance: 6km
Time taken: 34:53
Calories burned: 340
Average pace per km: 5:55

Wednesday, November 29, 2006

Back to RPM!

Wednesday 6.15am
This morning I made it to the gym on time to do an RPM/Spin class. It was a great workout and I really pushed myself which hopefully will help the leg strength!

5.45pm - Yoga
Tonight's class was great. It was a restorative session and just so good. Although some of the stretches and poses were a bit difficult there were also a number of relaxing poses and they are the best after a stressful day in the office!

Tuesday, November 28, 2006

Short term memory loss!

Oh golly, another week has flown by already and now there's all this catching up to do. I so wish I didn't have to go to work and could keep everything up to date. I can't believe it's less than a month until Christmas. I have just so much to do and work is so busy and there's so many functions it's driving me crazy. What is really really disappointing is that I was so much looking forward to track on Thursday with Luckylegs coming to Canberra to be at track and the spiral handicap event to run. However, I completely overlooked the fact that it is actually the evening of our client staff Christmas party which I am compelled to attend being part of management and I am disappointed, frustrated and very cross with myself!

I will go backwards with my training (which probably has gone backwards lately anyway)!

Monday 27 November
Morning - Gym
Total body workout

Running - speedygeoff's group at Parliament House
Geoff was unable to attend tonight so Trevor led our group following speedygeoff's program. After a warm-up loop of PH our main set was 5 x [600m hilly loops fast, 600m hilly loops slow]. Maureen and I managed 4 repeats before calling it quits. The others had lapped us anyway. The temperature was 34deg and we were dripping and uncomfortable. We finished with a cool-down (I wish) loop back to the carpark.

Total distance: 8km

Sunday - Vets' Handicap Run - 8.30am
Location: Innabaanya (Mount Majura)
Handicap Group: 20
Place: 70th
Distance: 8km
Time taken: 47:30
Average pace per km: 5:57

The run started on a hill and was off-road, very undulating and had a lot of loose stones and rocks on the route so I had to watch my footing. It was a two loop course and the second time certainly felt easier than the first loop in spite of the hills and knowing what was coming next! I managed to run all the way although a bit slowly! I didn't run really well but it was a good course although I did run with caution among the rough surface. The weather was very hot and I don't run particularly well in the heat. There was however some lovely shaded parts along the way. Mr B ran well taking ten minutes less than me and coming in 10th from Group 25. After the run we stayed to listen to all the presentations and enjoyed a sausage sizzle, drinks and good company!

Later in the afternoon I watched the finish of the Hartley Challenge where all the cyclists arrived in convoy at Reconciliation Place. We had a couple of friends who had completed the cycle and had a ball. It was certainly an impressive challenge over three days of cycling a total of 450km.

The triple tri was also held this weekend and a number of friends and vetrunners competed in various legs.

Saturday - Medium hilly run from Molonglo Reach - 8am
From next Saturday onwards our runs will start at 7am as the weather is becoming really hot. However this morning we started at 8am and yes, it was still very hot. Barbara turned up this week and for a while we ran with Ewen who had decided to start with our 8am group today as we run more gently than the 7am group! We ran a slightly different route back following Ewen. It was very close in distance to our usual run.

Distance: 16.3km
Average pace per km: 6:30
Time taken: 1hour 46mins

Morning - Gym

6pm - Track

I planned to run the 3000m event at 6pm and arrived with just over 5 minutes to spare - not a lot of warm-up but tonight it was extremely hot on the track. The sun was glaring down and that 3km felt really hard. I was 28secs slower than last time!!
Event: 3000m
Time taken: 15:25

I was just packing up to leave the track when Marg and Anne arrived and somehow I was talked into entering the 10000m event. Now this means running round and round the track 25 times. Fortunately the sun was no longer streaming down and the conditions were a lot better at 8pm than they were at 6pm. Roy lap counted for Marg, Steve and me and off we went - round and round and round. For the first 6km I ran behind Marg and tried to ensure that she didn't get too far in front. At the 6km mark I sped up a little bit and managed to pass her. At this point I tried to continue at a slightly faster pace and managed to stay in front of her. It wasn't as boring as I thought it would be as there were lots of others out there and people cheering on the sidelines. In fact I hate to admit this but I will probably do it again!

Event: 10,000m
Time taken: 53:46

Wednesday - gym and yoga
Too far away to remember the details. I know I definitely benefitted from the yoga session. I will try very hard to update my blog more regularly so that I don't forget what I'm doing!!

Tuesday, November 21, 2006

And it just keeps getting hotter!

After work today I drove to the National Library to compete in one of the Cross Country Spring Series races. The temperature was over 34deg and there was a hot wind rising. I had to squeeze in this run before going to the Veteran's Sub Committee Meeting (after a shower of course). It was a bit of a rush. However that didn't manage to make me run faster as my time reflects. Although it is a pleasant run from the National Library to and past the Yacht Club for 2.5km and return it was too hot to really push myself. I chatted to Caroline who had already run up Black Mtn at lunchtime - amazing lady of over 60 who competes in lots of triathlons as well.

Distance: 5.09km
Time taken: 27:40
Average pace per km: 5:26
Calories burned: 250

Monday, November 20, 2006

A Scorcher of a Canberra Day!

Yes, today reached 31deg and tomorrow's forecast is for 32deg so it makes for hot running weather!

6am - Gym
I used the stepper machine for my warm up then worked on the leg machine, adductors and abductors, before concentrating on the shoulders, chest, back, triceps, biceps and abs. I increased all my weights except the shoulder machine - I find that so hard!

5.30pm - speedygeoff's training group at Parliament House
My legs did not want to work too hard tonight and it was quite an effort to keep going. However after the warm up loop they started to feel a bit better. We formed teams of two again and this week I teamed up with Maureen. We ran a 600m lap as fast as possible (including hills of course) followed by a gentler 400m while our partner ran the 600m loop. We repeated this five times with very little break between each set. It was a really hot humid night and we were absolutely dripping by the time we finished the main set and ran our cool down (not that 'cool' is the operative word) lap back to the car park.

Distance: 9km
Calories burned: 520

Sunday, November 19, 2006

The World comes to Canberra!

Sometimes it is very difficult to keep on top of my blogging but now I should catch up before another week overtakes me.

On Wednesday I went to the gym to work on my upper body although I did spend ten minutes warming up on the treadmill, something I find quite difficult as I much prefer to run in the fresh air!

Saturday - Off-road Run
I met our Sat group at Molonglo Reach at 8am and ran our usual run past the Duntroon Golf Course and round the Mt Ainslie course with slight variations - in fact the route we took was a bit hillier than last week. There were six of us running in that group today and I was running at the rear feeling a bit tired after two full days in Adelaide. However the resulting time wasn't as bad as I expected.

Distance: 16km
Time taken: 1hour 38mins
Average pace per km: 6:07
Calories burned: 998
Fastest km: 5:26

After we finished we stopped at the BBQ area for a while where we were joined by others from the 7am group including Ewen. We also had a glass of champagne complete with strawberries and commiserated with the three from our group who had pulled out from the Twin Peaks Run at the last minute and congratulated Steve who joined us after having run it! CJ unfortunately had to withdraw as she has still not recovered from a lingering virus. As I was driving home I nearly fell asleep probably due to lack of sleep over the past few days and the glass of champagne - oops!

Today (Sunday) I have been at Commonwealth Park watching and cheering at the World's Long Distance Triathlon (4km swim, 120km cycle, 30km run) which was held in Canberra. There were about 600 competitors from all over the world and Mr B was a technical official. A group of us were supporting a friend who had been selected to compete in the 50-55 age group representing Canberra. He was in the first 30 out of the water and was doing extremely well on the bike until the last lap. At this stage he had four punctures and ended up walking in cycle shoes, wheeling his bike, for the last 10km of the cycle before running/walking the 30km run leg with severe cramping in his calf muscles. Although he took over 11 hours to finish this event to me he epitomises the courage and endurance of great athletes - a true inspiration. The temperature today was 31deg and it was very hot being a spectator let alone being a competitor. Well done to all those amazing participants including Flashdrake who looked really strong!

Monday, November 13, 2006

The Weather Won't Make up its Mind!

This morning I didn't manage to struggle to the gym although I woke before the alarm at 5.10am. I just felt utterly lethargic and my calves were still very sore so I gave myself an extra hour in bed before going to work to unpack more boxes after our office move.

During the course of the day it rained, the sun came out, there was a storm, strong winds, more rain and eventually it actually warmed up and the sun came out again in time for speedygeoff's training session at Parliament House.

After our warm up lap we started our main set from the rose garden. We divided into relay teams of two and I chose to be put with Ewen in the hope that he might be tired as he had already run over 6km before our session. We ran 400m hard in a hilly loop, tagged our partner and ran a gentler 220m while the other person ran the 400m. We repeated this seven times with very little time for rest before our team member tagged us. It was tough but I quite enjoyed it especially since I had contemplated not going to training as I felt pretty ordinary all day. However I think the training helped me feel better and although my calves and hamstring hurt a fair bit it was manageable. Thank you Ewen. We finished with a warm down lap of Parliament House.

Total distance: 9km
Fastest km: 4:28 (that must have been when speedygeoff wasrunning up behind me)

Sunday, November 12, 2006

Swim, Track, Gym and an Undulating Weekend Run

6.30am - Swim
A lovely 1km gentle swim followed by a spa and yummy brekkie with CJ and Mr B.

6pm - Track at AIS
As I was on call to babysit I only had time to enter the 800metre event. I managed to take a few seconds off my previous time a couple of weeks ago which made me happy. My previous best was 3:36:81.
Time taken: 3:34:28

Friday - Gym
This morning I followed my program working on legs, chest, arms, shoulders, biceps, triceps, back and abs.

Saturday - A Run with the 'Cotter Group'
I met up with Graeme's runners at Molonglo Reach at 8am. There were just six of us running together and at the 6km mark only us 3 "girls" decided to run the full loop. We ran past Duntroon and on to Mt Ainslie where we ran the reverse of the Vets' handicap run. It was obviously quite undulating and my calves were a bit tight. The previous day I had been packing boxes and running up and down 45 steps from my office to the office next door which also has 45 steps (and no lift). Yes, our office has relocated next door and it was a very full-on day. Today I ran with Liz and learnt yet another interesting life story. It's so good becoming acquainted with new people who have such fantastic stories to tell. Liz is just returning from injury. At the six foot track this year she unknowingly ran the distance in about 5hrs 45mins with a cracked pelvis! After the event she could hardly walk (not surprisingly). It took about two months however before she was correctly diagnosed and had to stop running for two months after that! What an incredible pain threshold she must have!

Distance: 16:40km
Time taken: 1hr 43mins
Average pace per km: 6:18
Calories burned: 1002
Fastest km: 4:57

Unfortunately I couldn't stay after the run to chat with the others who were gradually returning from the 7am group or with those who had turned back earlier as I had to quickly drive home to shower and change and go to help out at our Vets' Athletics tent at the Belconnen Community Day. That was quite fun with lots of familiar people dropping by. Then it was a nail appointment and a quick return to our tent to assist with the packing up, before going to the fruit and vege markets and the supermarket to stock up for the week. The temp today reached 29deg and was beautiful.

Today was supposedly a "rest" day. However, after taking my daughter to the airport from where she flew off to America for three weeks, I drove into work to scrub windows, desks and benches and unpack boxes in our new office. At home Mr B and our son spent a busy day working on the construction of a deck which will hopefully mean some lovely outdoor living during the summer months.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Wednesday looking both ways to Sunday!

Yesterday turned into a "rest" day although that wasn't the original intention. I ate far too much for our Melbourne Cup lunch but still changed into my running gear after work and headed off with the intention of running (or plodding) in the first of the Spring series Cross Country runs. As I drove to collect Mr B the rains came down and the wind came up! Mr B was waiting outside his office looking decidedly "un-ready" for the run. Yes, he managed to talk me out of driving to the run and driving home instead. Oh why am I so easily tempted not to run when the weather turns cold? Of course by the time we arrived home the rain had stopped and I immediately felt guilty for not having run. I do hate my silly conscience sometimes - it's always telling me off when I wuss out!

6.15am - Gym
This morning I made up for it (sort of) by going to the gym in time for an RPM class. It was really hard work and my legs were burning. I'm sure it was just as hard as a tough run!
5.30pm - Yoga
After work I went to my yoga class - lots of difficult stretches, twists, leg poses, a very long shoulder stand and a 12 minute rest pose to finish.

Monday, November 06, 2006

Mondays turn up so fast!

6.15am - Gym
I cut the time a little fine for the Bodypump class so I followed my program instead covering everything in it - legs, chest, shoulders, biceps, triceps, back and abs. I warmed up on the stepper and cooled down on the treadmill. It took nearly an hour and I enjoyed a pleasant brekkie afterwards before heading off to another stressful day in the office!

5.30pm - speedygeoff's training group - Parliament House
For once I was in plenty of time for the full warm-up and we ran a couple of loops of PH before heading for the rose garden. From here we divided into groups of three and ran "following the leader" in any direction for 25 minutes. The leader changed as imagination waned and we ran quite a few interesting routes. I ran with speedygeoff and Ewen. It was fun. Then we regrouped at the rose garden from where we all ran as fast as possible for three lots of 210metres of undulating terrain including negotiating steep steps and bends. After a cool down loop back to the carpark our total distance was just under 8km.

Distance: 8km
Calories: 450

Good luck to all those who are placing their "once a year" bets on a Melbourne Cup horse tomorrow! We are having a lunch at work but I should avoid the wine as at 6pm the Cross Country Club has its first 5km event in the Spring/Summer series.

Sunday, November 05, 2006

A PB; some rain and a good off-road run

Thursday morning - swim
Another enjoyable swim. I don't seem to improve my time but I'm finding the km I swim very comfortable. I enjoyed a lovely spa after the swim. It was so good.

Thursday 6pm - track - run
The sky looked a bit murky as I headed for the AIS straight after work. The temperature became very humid and uncomfortable after the first event - a sure sign that the rain wasn't far away. I entered the 3000m, the first event at 6pm. As tonight was also the Pennington series we were handicapped according to age groups. I'm happy to report that I finally made the distance in under 15mins - yay!

Distance: 3km
Time taken: 14:58

Shortly after the start of the next event, the 3000m walk, the heavens opened and it really poured down. It was a beautiful sight but not such good timing. Those poor walkers were absolutely drenched and by the time the event finished looked like a bunch of drowned rats! However it certainly cooled the temperature suddenly. As it continued to rain steadily during the 1500m CJ and I decided to wait until the 5 lap spiral handicap event which was the last event for the night at 8.15pm. By that time the rain had eased and it was very pleasant running although all that rest between events made me a bit toooo relaxed as is shown by the time I took!

Event - 5 lap spiral (2km)
Time taken: 10:13
Handicap: Group 29
Place: 14th (32 starters)

Friday - Gym - 6.15am
This morning, after a warm-up on the treadmill, I concentrated mainly on the upper body - chest, shoulders, biceps, triceps and abs although I did spend a little time on the leg press.

Saturday - Run with the Cotter group - Molonglo Reach
I chose the 8am start which is the shorter version and although this is the Cotter Group over the summer months they are running from Molonglo Reach where there are more sheltered places to run as the weather becomes much hotter. I have never run with this group before and as neither Marg or Barb could join me today it was a whole new experience for me. When I arrived and realised who was running I have to admit that initally I felt a little intimidated. There were a number of very skinny fit-looking ladies who I recognised as also having very fast times!

The group did various lengths running off road all the time which is much easier on the legs. At the 6km mark only three of us selected to continue on around Mt Ainslie following the Vets' Handicap course and other undulations. It was good for me to run with new people. At this stage I ran with Cathy M with Debbie just ahead. Running is such a lovely way to learn about people's interesting lives and I enjoyed the run especially as we ran at a very non-threatening pace in spite of my initial fears! I will return and next month I believe we all start at 7am so I can select longer distances at that stage!

Distance: 16:42
Time taken: 1hr 41mins (too much talking obviously)
Average pace per km: 6:10
Calories: 1044
Fastest km: 5:17 (interestingly that was at the 16km mark)

After our various runs we met at the BBQ area and had nibbles and coffee and chatted. CJ, Ewen and Steve finished a little later after running for a tough 26km.

Wednesday, November 01, 2006

Invisible Baton Change at Brindabella Classic

Handing Marg the invisible baton after finishing my leg in the Brindabella Classic Relay.

(Photo courtesy of speedygeoff's blog)

November already!

Sunday 29 October - First Day of Daylight Saving
Vets' Run
Guess who blogged about daylight saving on Sat night and then forgot to put the clocks forward before going to bed! Yes, it was me and believe me, when I realised the actual time while eating my banana on toast at a leisurely pace, I moved faster than I run in order to shower, dress and drive out to pick up CJ on the way to Deek's Forest for the Veterans' Monthly Handicap run. I made it with time to spare and discovered I had been put back six groups because of my win last month. Eeek! Not much danger of a medal today! However, it was a good run and a good course albeit a little bare without the forest but the surface was good and there were plenty of undulations to make it interesting. I came in 78th which was rather different from 1st last month! After witnessing our friend Ian being presented with his "100th run" t-shirt CJ, Barb, Marg and I drove to Black Pepper where we met up with Mr CJ for coffee.

Distance: 8km
Time: 43:30
Average pace per km: 5:25
Fastest km: 4:50
Group: 20
Place: 78th

Monday 30 October
6.15am - Bodypump at Gym
This was a good class and a great way to start the week. It was hard work but always feels good.
5.30pm - speedygeoff's running at Parliament House
A couple of warm up loops of PH followed by a 1km undulating run, 30 sit ups then a main set of intervals round the track between the cones speedygeoff had set up for us. We also practised our sprint starts for the track session on Thursday. Of course we finished with a cool down loop of PH and stretches.

Distance: 8km
Calories burned: 400

Wednesday 1 November
5.45am - Run
Yes, I dragged myself out of bed intending to go for a 10km run. However, it was an absolutely perfect morning for running and I had a few things on my mind. I always find a long run is a great panacea where all the problems of the world seem to find a temporary (very temporary) solution. It's the best therapy ever. Anyway, my run turned into 17km. I set off from home and headed for Lake Ginninderra but instead of running past it and towards home my legs carried me down the hill and on around the lake before heading home via Giralang. It's a great run but I probably started a little late and it turned into another mad panic when I arrived home. Breakfast became a liquid drink and I did roll up to work half an hour later than usual. I was only in the office ten minutes before I just had to go down to buy a strong coffee to keep me awake!

Distance: 17km
Time taken: 1hr 38mins
Average pace per km: 5:48
Calories burned: 992

5.45pm - Yoga
Yoga was really good tonight - heaps of new stretches and leg work and I actually found it quite good for my hamstrings which are still troubling me. We spent a long time perfecting a number of stretches and repeating them over and over. We also practised the start of a head stand and spent five full minutes in a shoulder stand. The rest pose at the end was for 15 minutes - absolute heaven!

I am very tired tonight. Tomorrow morning I'll go for a gentle swim and spend some time in the spa - I love that. Then of course it's track tomorrow night. The forecast is for much needed rain tomorrow - will be interesting if it rains for the track session. Wonder if that affects the numbers?

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Daylight Saving Starts Tomorrow - woo hoo!

And so another week is drawing to a close. Today I woke with a headache and felt a bit clammy, slow and lethargic. I took Mr B to the airport and intended running later in the morning but it took me the rest of the day to do the washing, shopping and other household chores which is why I find it's much better for me to run early in the morning! I do feel a lot better now although I'm still tired and slow which does not bode well for tomorrow! Last night we babysat for our two little grandchildren and it was well after midnight before we left for home. They were such a delight I might add and very well behaved.

Back to Tuesday
I went for a swim in the morning at CISAC - 1km - slowly but I enjoyed it. The best part was I was able to access the spa with my "Club Pink" membership so that was very soothing on my sore hamstring.

Wednesday morning - Run
Today was my youngest daughter's 23rd birthday - scary! I went for a run before she woke then heated up croissants for her brekkie - her favourite. Of course I had one too!

Distance: 10.25km
Time taken: 1hour 45secs
Average pace per km: 5:56
Calories burned: 594

When I left home I noticed the ground was wet so it had obviously recently rained. However, I proceeded with my run as it appeared to have stopped. About 5km from home the heavens opened and it really poured down. I felt great waving my arms round madly and catching rain drops with my tongue and it smelt divine. Then came the thunder - rumble, rumble RUMBLE! It was a little scary and I was a drowned rat when I reached the front door. However, by the time I left for work an hour later the sun was out and there wasn't a sign that any rain had ever happened! I know I didn't imagine it! Mr B witnessed the apparition appearing in the bedroom after my return!

Wednesday evening - Yoga
Now some days you just should not go there! This was one of them. I enjoyed the session in spite of my struggle and in spite of the fact that Polly, our instructor, kept announcing my name in relation to straightening my leg, lifting it higher, twisting my head further, widening my stance - I'm sure everybody in that very full class knows my name now! But at least I didn't fall asleep during the relaxation at the end - quite!

Thursday morning - Swim!
Yes, two swims in one week - amazing! I felt very comfortable with my 1km swim this morning. I don't get any faster but at least it felt good. The spa afterwards was great and evidence of last night's yoga class was afoot as a girl approached me in the spa to ask if I went to yoga. She recognised me - I knew I had become infamous from last night's class - there's no escaping now!
After my shower and dressing for work I hurried off to meet CJ for brekkie. Mr B joined us later too.

Thursday evening - Track session
I don't think my body has fully recovered. Tonight's track session was even harder than last week. They didn't have a spiral this week. That's only every second week so I only entered the 3000m and the 800m events. That was hard enough.

Distance: 3000m
Time taken: 15:03 (2secs slower than last week!)

Distance: 800m
Time taken: 3mins 40secs

The most exciting part of the evening was that some time after competing in the 3000m, which is the first event of the evening, I spotted Lucky Legs with Ewen. It was so fantastic to see her and really cool that she ran in the same 800m heat as Marg and me. It was even more exciting watching her face when she finished the 200m sprint event. She was on such a high, in fact her excitement was definitely contagious and it made the evening really fun. I'm hoping she will be back in a few weeks to join us again.

Friday - Gym
This morning I concentrated on the upper body again - chest, shoulders, biceps, triceps, back and abs.

Tomorrow morning (Sunday) is the Vets' Handicap Run at Deeks' Forest (or ex-forest now). The forecast is for minus 1 overnight (aaah) and as we have to put our watches forward an hour tonight (daylight saving starts tomorrow), it will probably be a jolly cold start! Hope someone wants to go with me for a coffee afterwards!

Tomorrow night all the family is coming for dinner to celebrate daughter and daughter-in-law's birthdays which are one day apart.

Monday, October 23, 2006

Ouch, ouch, ouch!

Morning - Gym
Gee, it was hard work convincing myself that I should go to the gym this morning but I was determined to keep going as usual. After all it was only a 17km run yesterday. It's just that my calves and hamstrings were telling me differently. Ouch, they really hurt. I decided against doing a Bodypump class as there's a lot of lunges involved in that class and I wasn't too sure I could cope with that this morning. Instead I attended a half hour Fitball Class which involved lots of abs work and marginal leg work. I followed that by about half an hour in the gym working on my chest, shoulders, biceps and triceps.

After work - speedygeoff's training at Parliament House - 5.30pm
Yes, I actually attended speedygeoff's session and ran a couple of warm-up laps before the main session at the grassy oval. We had a repeat session of last week with a 1km loop followed by several speedy 200m loops. However, I had special dispensation because of yesterday's run and just ran the loops at a very gentle pace. We did 30 sit-ups before the main set, practised our sprint starts again and ran a warm down loop of PH to finish.

Total distance: 7.2km

I think tonight my calves feel marginally better but my left hamstring still hurts heaps. Perhaps I need a massage!

Sunday, October 22, 2006

Brindabella Classic to end the week!

strewth, Aki, Marg and Barb - Aki is the speedy gosling!
cj and strewth at start of Bulls Head leg

What a week! So much to say that it's difficult to know where to start. I guess I should go back briefly to the beginning.

Tuesday 17 October - Run 6.30pm

Distance: 5.33km
Time taken: 30:31
Average pace per km: 5:44
Calories burned: 318

Mr B arrived home on his bike having already just run 9km and joined me for a short run as it was becoming dark and I needed company! We ran a slightly different route along a back track. It was fun having the company but it felt as though we ran quicker than we did!

Wednesday - Gym 6.15am
Absolute Abs Class for 15mins
followed by upper body workout - chest, shoulders, biceps, triceps with weights and machines
That was the first time I had attended the abs class and it's certainly good for me. I will do that again. It was tough but felt effective.

On Wed, Thursday and Friday I attended a conference at the AIS and it was pretty full-on. However the catering was superb and it was impossible to resist the scones with jam and cream, yummy pastries and delicious cooked lunches. Day One of the conference was hard work with a number of work shops and lots of concentration so the conference dinner that evening was a welcome break with fantastic entertainment, band and food. In fact for the first half hour of the evening we were taught how to play bongo drums by an African band. It was loads of fun but our hands were quite red and we certainly earned our beautiful meal!

Thursday - Track - 6pm
This was the first time I have been to the track at the AIS for years. It was quite nerve wracking really. I decided to try the 3000m which was the very first event. There were loads of people there and a large number entered this particular event which is obviously very popular.
The other events I entered were the 1500m and the 4lap spiral handicap which increases every 2 weeks by a lap. Each time you run a lap you run in the next lane so it's a little longer each lap. I enjoyed it.

Results of my first track session
3000m - 15:01
Calories burned: 178
Average pace per km: 4:47

1500m - 7:08
Calories burned: 90
Average pace per km: 4:35

4 lap spiral - 8:05
Calories burned: 98
Average pace per km: 4:42

I did find the 3000m race the toughest as I spent the next half hour coughing with a very dry throat but I really enjoyed the 1500m and the spiral handicap runs. After the track session ended ten of us enjoyed a delicious meal at Della Rocca, a little Italian restaurant in Kaleen. It was delicious food and I was surprised that my appetite had returned even at that late hour after all the eating I had done during the day at the conference! Speedygeoff had organised the venue and it was a great way to start the track season - yummo!

Friday - Gym - Body Balance
This morning I decided to try a Body Balance class - something a little different for me. As I had to miss my first yoga session on Wed night due to the conference dinner I thought it would be a good plan to try this class instead as an alternative. It was a mixture of tai chi, yoga and pilates - interesting, especially some of the moves which felt a bit like ballet moves or something! However the stretches helped and the abs work was good. I don't think it was as good as my yoga class though but it was worth a try.

Saturday - Brekkie with Jen and CJ
Jen had visited Canberra for a weekend of culture (!) and unfortunately Saturday's weather was Canberra at its worst. It was cold, grey and quite wintry. However we enjoyed a lovely breakfast together at Da Celini in Braddon and although we had to sit inside out of the cold it was still just so lovely to catch up with Jen and the short time we had went very quickly.

Jen, Strewth, CJ (photo borrowed from CJ!)

Sunday - Brindabella Classic

This morning I had to roll out of bed at 4.45am as I was being collected at 5.45am for our long sojourn to the start of the Brindabella Classic with our relay team. Aki, Marg, Barb and I entered as 'Three Slow Geese and a Speedy Gosling'. We met at the reserve to collect our numbers then continued the long drive to the top for the start. We made the top with less than 5 minutes to spare and panic was starting to set in as we realised how fine we had cut the time. However we dropped Barb safely at her start spot and returned down to the the start of the second leg to drop Aki off for her start. There we waited until Barb safely arrived and Aki started before proceeding on to the next stop. Barb looked strong and it appeared that the first leg was in fact shorter than the suggested 8.7km. Aki's leg on the other hand measured 20.5km on her garmin instead of the advertised 17.9km. Aki's leg was probably the toughest but she thoroughly enjoyed the bush and the hills which was great. When she pushed herself up the last hill to tap my hand for the start of my relay leg she certainly looked like she had worked very hard. Her time for the 20km was 1hr 44mins which was brilliant as the terrain had been very tough by all accounts.

This is Aki finishing her hilly second leg of the Brindabella Classic

Now it was my turn. The sun was shining brightly by now and although the air was still a little cold I was very glad that I had decided to wear my CR singlet and not the tee-shirt. Having said that, I changed my mind and re-pinned my number three times before I made that decision! My leg had a lot of downhill and the surface, although stony with a few twigs and branches on the path in parts, was mainly good, some of it running on pine leaves and some on dirt. It was quite exposed as fire had destroyed a lot of the forest a couple of years ago. It was also very dry and dusty out there. What I found most scary was the fact that there was just not a soul to be seen in front of me or behind me. I did catch a glimpse of a small group of people turning a hill behind me in the distance at one stage which made me feel a bit better but then they disappeared and after several kilometres of running in the wilderness I really was starting to become quite worried. Just before the 8km mark I finally came to a drink station and I was so relieved to see humans and to know I was actually going in the right direction that I forgot to stop and take a drink! However the next drink station wasn't too many kilometres further down the track and I made sure I took gatorade and water here.

After that stop the track was better marked with litter bins on the way and I felt even more comfortable when a stray runner appeared beside me. Yay - a real person running and in my direction what's more. How much better did that make me feel! And around the bend I saw another runner so I defnitely knew I was running the right way at last. At the 15km mark there was an uphill run and I really enjoyed the break from the downhill and flat. There I passed the runner who had passed me. He was now walking. At the top the view was breathtaking - the hills were almost blue in the sunlight and you could see for miles - lots of little tracks marked through the hillside. I commented how beautiful it was and how it was worth the climb but the other runner seemed a bit tired. I think he was running the whole run and not as a relay member so probably didn't really appreciate any hills at all at that stage. After that it was mainly downhill to the next change-over point where I reached Marg who ran our last leg.

I thoroughly enjoyed the run - my only worry was the fear of becoming lost alone out there. Next year I would like to run the Bulls Head in its entirety (that is the second half of the Brindabella Classic) which would mean I could start with a group of people and not feel so alone. Two runners did in fact become lost out there and one ran 10km in the wrong direction which meant that her team could not finish. That would indeed have been very disappointing and frustrating.

After the finish of my leg

Marg had a good run for her last leg in spite of having to run through thigh deep water before running up a steep hill in wet shoes. We ran out to meet her towards the finish so that we could all run in through the finish line together. It was a great course with heaps of food supplied afterwards and we had a ball.

Total distance: 53.8km

Time taken: 4hours 49minutes
My leg: 17.15km (measured by Gandalf)
Time taken: 1hour 29mins

Pace per km: 5:12
Fastest km: 4:18

Calories burned: 950

Monday, October 16, 2006

Welcome back to speedygeoff!

Where do I begin? It's so easy to fall behind in blogging when life gets in the way! However I will briefly summarise the last few days for an update.

Thursday 12 October - Swim
I swam a km at CISAC before work. I actually quite enjoyed it in spite of the long time between swims! Of course I was slow which is normal for me but I felt comfortable and didn't struggle to swim the distance. I really must try to swim more often.

Evening - Training was not held tonight as a number of us attended the farewell dinner for one of our long-standing veteran athletes who is heading off for Wollongong in a few weeks. There was an enormous turn-out for a gentleman who has contributed an enormous amount to vets atheletics in a number of capacities and who will be difficult to replace.

Saturday 14 October - Long hilly sloooooooooow run - Mt Majura
I met up with Marg at the base of Mt Ainslie - just the two of us this time. We took a different direction and aimed for Mt Majura. This time we started on an uphill and didn't do much else but run in a more or less vertical direction. We found a stile, climbed over it and ran a very narrow track up, up, and up. Now I use the term "run" very loosely as we did have to walk in a number of places where there were wide uneven steps, loose gravelly uneven ground and VERY steep slippery spots. It was so tough I wasn't even confident we would make it to the top but I really really wanted to be able to achieve the top of Mt Majura this week to match the top of Mt Ainslie last week. We spotted a stumpy-tailed lizard (large and gorgeous) - quite different from the frill-tailed lizard we saw last week. It looked like snake territory to me and near the top when we felt as though we could go no further a young girl came whizzing past us saying she was running fast because she was scared of snakes! However, although she had often run to this spot the last steep gravelly hill was even her undoing. She had never managed to conquer that hill and we took it very gingerly as it was definitely slippery. I cannot remember ever running this distance so slowly. It was one tough run - even tougher and definitely more uneven and scary than last week!

However I have to admit it was a glorious feeling reaching the peak at last and admiring that stunning view at the top and knowing that we had actually finally managed it. The downhill was much quicker! It did occur to me that maybe another time it would not seem so bad. We were just very unsure of our footing and that definitely takes practice. I'm sure even walking all those steep steps must have been good for the leg strength!!

As we neared our starting point we spotted Will just returning from his run and he made some comment about how fit we are - ha - if he had seen the way we struggled up those hills he might not have been so complimentary. Here's hoping we can struggle successfully through the Brindabella Classic Relay next Sunday!

Distance: 16km
Time taken: 2hours (oh dear me!!)
Calories burned: 1062

Monday morning - today
Gym - Bodypump
Gee I found those lunges really difficult today. My legs burnt. However it was an excellent session and gave my muscles a good work-out!

Afternoon - PH Running - speedygeoff has returned
Yes, our fearless leader was back at Parliament House tonight and we had a good session. It was great to welcome him back.

Warm-up of 2 loops of PH
1km hilly lap fast
30 sit ups!
6 x 200m with 100m easy jog between each 200m
practice of sprint starts for track season
Cool-down loop of PH

Total distance: 7.6km
Calories burned: 579

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Squeezing in a Quick Run

This morning I rushed off to the gym with the intention of doing the RPM class at Club Pink. However although I made it to the class on time (just) the bikes were all taken so I had to be satisfied with just following my fitness/gym program. Next week I'll aim to be there at least 5 mins earlier to ensure I have a bike or else I'll revert to the Club Lime class which has room for a lot more people. However I did a good weights session although it's probably not a good idea to do weights two days in a row.

After work I attempted to arrive home at a reasonable hour, change and go for a longish run. However the best laid plans ............... I didn't manage to run out the door until nearly 6.30pm which meant it was becoming dark by the time I was running the home stretch. I decided just to run the block loop due to the hour although my original intention had been to run twice as far.

Distance: 6km
Time taken: 33:20
Average pace per km: 5:39
Calories burned: 332

I received some exciting mail today. It was a Canberra Times black cap and a certificate stating that our team "Moore or Less" won first place in the Female 50-59 age group. That was pretty amazing. In the same mail I received my certificate of participation from the City to Surf in August!

Tuesday - Gym - Bodypump class
I decided to try the Club Pink Bodypump Class. It went well although there are so many lunges my legs just burn by the time it's over. The people are very friendly and I do enjoy the social atmosphere in the breakfast room after the classes.

Monday, October 09, 2006

Parliament House Training

About ten of us turned up for speedygeoff's training session tonight. Trev took the session in our leader's absence. As I drove towards the underground carpark I was directed to "illegally" do a u-turn as we could not enter the carpark today - not sure quite what important happening was taking place but there were a few fire engines about - perhaps there was a a bomb scare?? Anyway, I digress. I had to park the car on the street and met up with Maria and Ken so at least I had company for the first warm-up loop of PH. We then met up with the rest of the group to run the next warm-up lap before heading to the bottom grassy verge in front of PH where we ran our main set.

5 laps of the grassy rectangular verge with each uphill edge fast then
5 laps in the opposite direction with the opposite uphill edge fast

Another lap of PH to cool down.

Total distance: 9.5km
Calories burned: 572

My legs didn't want to work properly tonight but I persevered. It was hard work but I'm glad I did it. The company was good and I think my hamstring feels marginally better for the effort! Tomorrow morning I'll do a bodypump class at the gym.

We drove to the coast yesterday and the car went beautifully but we drove away from gorgeous Canberra sunshine into cloudy cold drizzly weather at the beach! We bought fish and chips and drove home again! However at least we gave my little VW Golf a good run!

Saturday, October 07, 2006

Forget the Undulations; Think HILLS!

Mr B and I met up with CJ, Marg and Barb at the same place we ran last Saturday. We ran exactly the same course and met the same magpie which chose to swoop Mr B and left us girls alone! After we ran over that nasty gravelly hill (which somehow didn't seem quite so bad today) Marg and Barb continued on back to the start and the rest of us decided to keep running (if you can call it that) up, up, up, up to the road leading up, up, up to the very top of Mt Ainslie. It was dusty, it was hot, it was tough but it was a glorious feeling to reach the top and admire that fabulous view on a stunning Spring day. We decided to run back down the road and it was a great feeling just finding a bit of speed at last after struggling up those hills although I found the road surface much tougher on the limbs and my ankle was giving nasty twinges until we reached the off road track again. As we ran in the trails again we spotted an enormous lizard and stopped to watch it for a moment as it rustled through the dry grass. Once we reached the water tower we felt like we were nearly back but gee that last 1.5km seemed very very long. It was a tough course but it did create a nice sense of achievement although CJ kept pointing out more uphill tracks on the way back which may be an even steeper option next weekend. Later we enjoyed muffins and coffee at Hudsons.

Distance: 19.4km
Time taken: 2hours 8mins
Average pace per km: 6:36 (!!) - but it was soooo tough!
Calories burned: 1275 (probably the equivalent of that muffin and the Italian hot chocolate I enjoyed at the markets later that day)!
Fastest km: 5mins exactly (must have been that downhill bit)

I have now officially entered our team in the Brindabella Classic Relay - "Three Slow Geese and a Speedy Gosling" - Marg, Barb, Aki and I are definitely competing in what is known as 'Australia's Toughest Downhill Mountain Race' - scary stuff! My leg is the third one and is 17.4km - should be fun!

Friday - Gym
Yesterday I went to the gym early in the morning and worked out on my upper body as I wanted to save my legs for Saturday's run. I worked on the chest, back, arms, shoulders (ouch) and lots of abs!

Tomorrow (Sunday) we are driving to the coast for the day to give my new Golf a good run. I am so looking forward to my bed tonight!

Thursday, October 05, 2006

speedygeoff's group without speedygeoff!

This morning I drove in to meet CJ for brekkie in my smooth new car. It's so lovely to drive and it was probably a good idea to do my first solo run before the traffic started. I had enough of that on my way to training after work. Yes, speedygeoff's group was still running at the oval minus our fearless leader who is currently enjoying(!) running in the heatwave in Adelaide! Only nine of us turned up tonight. Mr B decided to join us even though he had just run a lap of Lake Ginninderra. It was decided that our main set would be a pyramid session.

Warm-up: approx 2.7km
2 x 100m fast
100m slow between each 100m
1 x 200m fast
200m slow
1 x 300m fast
300m slow
1 x 400m fast
400m slow
1 x 300m fast
300m slow
1 x 200m fast
200m slow
2 x 100m fast
100m slow between each 100m

Warm down loop of 1.2km

Total distance: 7.5km

Although the temp reached 25deg today there was a fair bit of wind which was okay on the oval but the temperature dropped considerably as darkness fell and tonight is predicted to drop back to 1deg before another lovely sunny day tomorrow.

Wednesday, October 04, 2006

My New Car Has Arrived!

Tuesday - Today I had planned to go to the RPM class after work but the best laid plans.......!! I had just arrived at the gym when I had a call from a work colleague who had managed to be locked out of the office and had left his car keys inside. Guess who had to turn round and drive back to rescue him! Damn - I missed the RPM class but did return to the gym to do my normal program and it felt like a good workout. I still have trouble with the shoulder lifts though. I can increase weights everywhere else but the shoulders lifts are HARD!

Wednesday - Run
What a gorgeous day - 25deg in the sun and lovely. And very excitingly I collected my new work car, chosen by me so that I can buy it to keep in a few years time. It's a blue VW Golf and it's just gorgeous - so beautiful to drive. I'll take a photo and post it on my blog in the next few days! After driving it home (carefully!) I decided I should go for a quick run before it grew too dark to see - just time to run the block in fact.

Distance: 6km
Time taken: 33:07
Average pace per km: 5:35
Calories burned: 352

Tomorrow morning I'm meeting CJ at RBB for brekkie. I'm looking forward to it and I'm also looking forward to driving my new car in to work!

Monday, October 02, 2006

Running a Dusty Virgin Road!

How I love having long weekends especially warm, sunny ones. It has been so lovely catching up with friends, family and grandchildren over the extra time we had as well as spending time out in the sunshine, cycling, gardening, painting etc.

This afternoon Mr B and I decided to do something slightly different and we ran on the new Gungahlin Drive extension which is still being built. We ran it late in the day and of course there were no workmen about as it was a public holiday. There was a barricade across but it was easy to circumnavigate this and we were not quite alone as a lone walker with a backpack was obviously exploring the forbidden road too! We ran on the dusty gravelly not-quite-finished road and it was quite an adventure to discover how far the road had been completed. Going out was a slight steady incline and returning there was a head wind but it was much faster as it was slightly downhill. It was quite bizarre running freely on a road with no traffic (of course) and viewing bundles of light stands ready to be erected on the sides of the road. It was very dusty and dry and it stopped dead at Belconnen Way where the overpass is being built but doesn't yet connect to the road. We then turned round and returned the way we had come - a hot, dusty, windy but rewarding effort.

Distance: 9.49km
Time taken: 52:36
Average pace per km: 5:33
Calories burned: 564
Fastest km: 5:06

Sunday, October 01, 2006

Fun in the Sun!

Friday - Gym in morning before work
Just followed my program - working on all parts of my body including abs. Spent an hour working on the muscles with increased weights.

Saturday morning - Run
I met up with Marg and the base of Mt Ainslie where the Vets start their handicap run and we ran the vets' course then ran a variation of it as we wanted a longer tougher course and we sure found one! We discovered a very hilly version indeed with a very rough uneven surface. It was a bit scary actually as it was slippery with loose gravel on the steep downhills. We are entering the Brindabella Classic as a team and need to practise those downhills so we took the plunge but had to run very slowly and carefully a lot of the time and this reflected on our average pace and overall time. Next weekend we will try another version but at least it felt like a good tough run. It was very very dusty and dry out there as evidenced by my deceptively brown legs which changed colour after my shower later!

Distance: approx 16.50km
Time taken: 1hr 45mins
Average pace per km: 6:30
Calories burned: 915

Yes, it was a slow run but I think the hills made up for the speed!

In the evening we enjoyed a beautiful Italian meal at a restaurant by Lake Ginninderra with a number of triathlon and running friends who we hadn't seen for months. It was a fantastic night.

Sunday - Cycle!
Yes indeed - on this gorgeous sunny Spring afternoon Mr B and I went for a leisurely cycle following the AIS track in to the city then we cycled on to Lake BG where we found a mobile coffee van and bought blueberry muffins and coffee and ginger beer for Mr B. We did in fact cycle 23km so woo hoo, I'm back on the bike - gentle sure, but I have to start somewhere and it was a stunning day for a cycle.

Thursday, September 28, 2006

Running off the Chocolate!

After a full-on day in Sydney we had half an hour to spare before catching a cab to the airport. This meant there was time to walk down Pitt Street where we found Haighs Chocolate Shop - big mistake! I bought some choccie for Mr B but couldn't resist some for this chocoholic as well - not good, not good at all but oh so yummy!

In spite of allowing plenty of time for me to arrive in Canberra in time for training, the plane was delayed an hour due to mechanical problems and a change to a smaller plane (don't you hate that) and as a consequence by the time I arrived home it was too late to make it to training on time. Thus I had to change and run from home instead and only managed one loop of the block before it became dark. I also felt quite ill (from eating too much chocolate and drinking too many coffees no doubt)! I do have to admit that I had two excellent cappuccinos in the Sydney CBD followed by a lovely flat white at the airport - three out of three aint bad!! However that is probably two more coffees than I should have had and definitely too much chocolate!

Distance: approx 6km
Time taken: 32:27
Average pace per km: 5:35
Calories burned: 340

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

10km Before Breakfast!

This morning I decided it was time I went for an early morning run. It's lighter much earlier in the mornings now but it's still pretty cool so leggings and long sleeves were still required at 5.45am. I decided to take a different route from usual and ran to the AIS and along the new cycle track to Haydon Drive and home to Kaleen past the CIT and back on to the cycle track. The track is worth another investigation on the bike as it's pretty hard concrete on the feet but in spite of the roadworks and concrete world there were still lots of magpies and beautiful rosellas in plentiful supply. My fingers remained cold for most of the run although the rest of me eventually warmed up!

Distance: 10km
Time taken: 57:21
Calories burned: 598
Average pace per km: 5:44

Evening - Yoga
I was so hungry during the class tonight. My tummy was rumbling like crazy and I was very much looking forward to eating my dinner! This was the last session for this term and we now have a couple of weeks break. It was a good session with lots of much-needed leg work - standing and stretching poses and a very long shoulder stand.

Tomorrow morning I'm catching the 7.15am flight to Sydney for a meeting so no swimming this week! Now I had better book a cab!

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

The Week in Progress

Today I have developed a sore dry throat which is very irritating. There's been a few nasties going round the office and it's inevitable that the air conditioning will spread them around - I am not impressed!

Monday 6.15am - Body Pump class at the gym
This was a good class but the eventful part of the gym session was when I discovered I didn't have a towel when I emerged from the shower. Holding my t-shirt in front of me I called out to be rescued. Fortunately I had a friend there who could collect me a towel. At least it created a giggle from those nearby! I'm glad Club Pink provides towels!

Evening - VIP Movie Preview of "The Devil Wears Prada". We had to wear a touch of red - I probably wore more of a splash as I have lots of red in my wardrobe - red leather jacket, red shirt, red jewellery, red bag, red shoes .... ! We met up with CJ and Bec in the foyer but we managed to lose each other in the queue when the doors opened! There were nibbles and champagne to start and a little fashion show. The movie itself was fantastic. Talk about the boss from hell - hope I'm not that bad!!

Tuesday 6.15am - RPM/Spin Class at the gym
Now this was such a good work-out. I was dripping by the time we reached our cool down. I had help setting up my bike and it definitely made a huge difference. I worked much harder than last week and the music was great.

I had intended going for a run after work but I came home feeling pretty ordinary so it didn't happen! An earlier night than usual might be a good plan!

Sunday, September 24, 2006

Go for Gold!!

This has been a busy week work-wise and a bit interrupted training-wise but I must have done something right as today I hit the jackpot at the monthly Vet's Handicap Run and won the GOLD medal - yay, yay, yay!! I'm very excited and happy about that.

It was a cloudy, windy, drizzly morning but not too cold for running in a singlet. The course was at Blewitts Pine Forest (minus the pines these days) on a good surface and very undulating. The first half of the race was up and down and really quite pleasant but at about the halfway point it started going up, up, up, up for the next 3km. I just kept my eyes on one person in front of me at a time and decided to aim to pass that person. It was fun and rewarding but as I reached about the 5.5km mark the lady I passed said, "you are heading for a gold" and I realised there was nobody in sight ahead of me. Panic attack, nobody to follow, will I get lost - where is everyone? I decided they must be round the next bend but round the next bend and running up the hill cheering loudly were speedygeoff, speedygoose and Griffin - "come on Ruthy, you can do it". Well, that was it - there was a lovely downhill stretch then an uphill finish and I felt really determined and strong. I saw someone walking a long way ahead but apparently she had entered the short course of 3.5km (the Frylink series) and was not counted. I couldn't believe it when I was told I really had won the gold medal. A photo was taken of the winners but as I left my camera at home (after all I didn't expect this result) Mr B took a photo in the lounge room (above) before I changed out of my running gear.

We finished our run just in time as a huge windstorm swept through as the last competitor finished blowing everything everywhere and there was a long wait before the notices and results were read out as the tents were being dismantled. CJ, Mr CJ, Mr B and I then headed off to Musica e in Belconnen for a cappuccino - yes, yes, yes - such a good day and such a great feeling! I have such wonderful supporters and friends. Life's good!

Stats for today's hilly course
Distance: 7:05km
Time taken: 39:12
Average pace per km: 5:34
Fastest km: 4:50
Calories burned: 465

The week in Brief
Nothing can quite compete with today but on the whole it's been a pretty good week.

Monday morning - Bodypump class at the gym - heavier weights now as I'm getting the hang of it and enjoyed the class.
Monday evening - Dinner at Belluci's with speedygeoff's training group - delicious food and great company - a lovely evening - thanks speedygeoff.

Tuesday morning - my first attempt at an RPM (or spin) class at the gym - hard work on those bikes especially on the uphill parts but it felt like a great work out.
Tuesday later in the morning - I test drove a VW Golf which I will soon have as my work car (my choice). It is sooooo lovely and smooth to drive. I'm trading in my Nissan Pulsar which is a couple of years old and will soon proudly drive a new blue Golf. It's due to arrive late next week hopefully - how exciting!
Tuesday evening - ACTVAC sub-committee meeting - an offshoot of the VETs' main committee - Tuggeranong Don has now joined and it's a lovely little group although we need more members

Wednesday morning - A short run before flying to Sydney for a couple of days for a work function.
Distance: 6km
Times taken: 32:35
Calories burned: 340

Friday morning - Gym

This was my weights session - an hour of leg press, chest, shoulders, biceps, triceps and abs exercises with a warm up on the stepper and a cool down on the treadmill followed by brekkie in the gym which is part of the deal.

Saturday - My first cycle outdoors this season!
Yes, Mr B and I went for a quick cycle to stretch the legs before the grandchildren were delivered to be looked after for a few hours. They are so gorgeous!
Distance: 10.90km
Fastest pace: 32kph
Average pace: 20kph
Considering it was my first ride since about February I was happy to at least be riding my bike again. It was such a great sunny Spring day and I'm looking forward to my next ride now.

And that brings me back to today which I had to put first while it's fresh in my mind. I have another work conference in Sydney for just one day this coming week which again puts paid to my swimming. However I should be back in time for training at the oval on Thursday evening. Tomorrow morning I will go to Bodypump but will miss speedygeoff's training at Parliament House after work as CJ and I have tickets for "The Devil Wears Prada" tomorrow evening - a special VIP night. We went to a VIP fashion champagne breakfast yesterday and were given a show bag which included the tickets. I'm taking my daughters too so it should be such fun! Have a good week everyone!