Saturday, September 29, 2007

Trail running requires food!

Mr B and I didn't leave home until after 9.30am this morning battling a bitter head wind. We ran to the AIS where we found some trails leading us out to O'Connor Ridge. There we found lots of undulations. We ran several loops of varying degrees of difficulty before heading back to North Lyneham ridge where we ran more hills (slowly) before heading home. Once back on the cycle track the wind hit us in full force again but at least we had some shelter up in the hills.

Distance: 17.25km
Time taken: 1hr 51mins
Average pace per km: 6:29 (it was tough)

Having worked up a considerable appetite and thirst on those dusty, windy (in both meanings of the word) hills I was looking forward to a wonderful lunch with CJ, Kelley, Rochelle & Ewen at Tosolini's in the city. Great company, excellent food (including tiramisu to die for), lovely wine, good coffee and three leisurely hours of fun and conversation - excellent way to spend an overcast windy afternoon when most others were tucked indoors watching the grand final on telly. I think our alternative was much better.

I offered to drive Rochelle home and we had gone only a short distance from the carpark when we realised that one tyre was definitely very flat. Between us we managed to jump up and down on the tyre lever to loosen the wheel nuts and set up the jack resulting in us both having very black hands, just as a runner and his lady friend came by and stopped to help us. He turned out to be a motor mechanic specialising in VWs (which I drive) and he efficiently finished the job for us. Just goes to show that runners are very versatile people - how lucky was that!

Today was definitely a good day!

Thursday, September 27, 2007

Inverted Pyramids!

Tonight's session at Dickson oval we ran a long warm-up loop followed by a short loop then the main set was a pyramid session made up as follows:

2 mins fast, 2 mins slow
1:40mins fast, 1:40mins slow
1:20mins fast, 1:20mins slow
1min fast, 1 min slow
40secs fast, 40secs slow
20secs fast, 20secs slow
40secs fast, 40secs slow
1min fast, 1 min slow
1:20mins fast, 1:20min slow
1:40 fast, 1:40 slow
2mins fast, 2mins slow

Finishing with a cool down loop of the oval.
Total distance: 8.75km
Calories burned: 520

It was a lovely sunny day earlier but by 5.30pm there was a bitter wind blowing as we ran and it took a while to warm up.

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

A Birds' Eye View!

Tuesday 6.15am - Gym

Wednesday 6.15am - Gym
RPM - Cycle class 45minutes
Abs Class - 15minutes
Great big ouch!

Outside my office window a magnificent feat of engineering has taken place. A magpie and her mate have built the most intricately designed nest for their babies. I have been watching with awe as the nest has developed from a few plastic spoons and straws to a deep wire netting based work of art firmly entwined in a tall tree. Last weekend the eggs were laid and now Lady Maggie spends a lot of hours sitting on her eggs in her cosy nest while her mate protects her from the nasty currawongs and brings her food. From my window I can ensure no nasties visit in her absence and on occasion have been known to hammer on the window to frighten those currawongs away. Each morning I greet Mrs Maggie and the office staff visit my office at regular intervals to check on any progress. I read that magpie eggs take about three weeks to hatch and the chicks spend about four weeks in the nest after birth. It is so exciting having such a view from my window and keeps us all entertained during working hours!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Starting the Week Right!

Morning 6.15am - Gym
Fitball - lots and lots of abs work - a necessary evil!

After work - 4.30pm - speedygeoff's running at Parliament House
Two weeks in a row I have made it to the early warm-up with Ewen and Geoff. It's great to run that extra 8km before the training session. It's sociable but still a good pace for slow me to try to keep up. We also run away from PH and out past Kingston making it scenic and interesting. Then back to PH for a warm-up loop with the rest of the group before the main set. Tonight this was tough. It was 20 x 100m uphill sprints on the grassy bank jogging back downhill to start each hill on 90secs. It was so hard and then we ran a slow warm down lap back to the carpark.

Total distance: 16.06km
Calories burned: 945

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Mr B Wins Gold!!

This morning we had a very early start. Mr B entered the duathlon championship event which started at 8am which meant we needed to be there by 7.15am to give him a chance to set up his bike and be organised in plenty of time. In order to see the competitors start I followed in my car at the same time. There was a good crowd and about 200 entrants, 50% of which were interstate competitors.

Having seen them safely take off I drove just a bit further down the road to where the Vets' Monthly Handicap Race was held at Deek's Forest. This course used to be surrounded by bush and trees before the 2003 bush fires. Now it is completely exposed. However, the surface is still great and it was a perfect day for the run. It would be dreadfully hot in summer with no shade but today it was lovely - sunshine but a little bit cool because it was still only 9.25am by the time my group (with only me in it) was called. I wasn't eligible for points today as I have missed a few monthly runs this year being on holiday and out of Canberra too often! The first half of the run was great but the second half was definitely tough with nearly 4km of gradual incline to the end. I did enjoy it however and it was lovely to catch up with everyone even if it was briefly as I had to rush off after I finished so that I could catch Mr B in transition from the bike to the final run.

Distance: 8km (undulating) Time taken: 44:22 Average pace per km: 5:31 Place: 42nd (from Group 23) Calories burned: 480

The end of the duathlon was very exciting with Caroline, Bob, Robyn and Mr B all winning their respective age groups for the ACT. Dave won a bronze medal for his age group overall but won a gold medal for the ACT. Now this may well mean that he will qualify for the World Duathlon Championships in Italy next September and of course he WILL need spectators!!
Mr B - proud finisher

Winning the Gold!

Caroline and Mr B - gold medalists!

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Too Many Commitments interfere with my Running!

Tuesday morning - Gym

Tuesday evening - Vets' sub-committee meeting

Wednesday morning - Gym
RPM - cycle class

Wednesday evening - work late

Thursday morning - short run before meeting CJ for brekkie - Kaleen block plus detours
Distance: 6.28km
Time taken: 38mins
Average pace per km: 6:03
Calories burned: 375

Thursday evening - work function

Saturday morning - Run
Distance: 12.6km
Time taken: 75mins
Average pace per km: 5:58
Calories burned: 740

Mr B had a gentle ride on his bike leading me on my run from home past Giralang, McKellar and on to Evatt shops before turning and returning on the cycle track to Kaleen. It was a really stunning day in Canberra today - sunshine and no wind. Hope it's another beauty tomorrow for Mr B to take part in the duathlon championships (10km run, 40km cycle, 5km run) and for me to take part in the Veterans Monthly Handicap near to his race start in Stromlo. Looks like a very early start in the morning as I will watch the start of his 10km run before heading off to my 8km run. Then I hope to return to the duathlon course to see the finish.

Monday, September 17, 2007

Recovery Run!!!

Monday morning: Gym - Fitball Class
This class concentrates on the abs by doing strange and uncomfortable exercises on the fitball. I find it quite challenging and am hoping so see some results one day!

Afternoon - speedygeoff's running training at Parliament House
This afternoon I left work early and managed to meet up with Ewen and speedygeoff at 4.30pm for their early warm-up session before the proper training session started. It was great as my legs needed a good stretch and we fitted in 8km before the session running from PH, down to the lake and past Kingston and back to PH with a few undulations to make it interesting. The company was good and I enjoyed it. I needed to fit in the extra kms to make up for the fact that I won't be running tomorrow as I have a meeting in the evening and gym in the morning.

The others joined us at 5.30pm and we then ran a warm-up loop of PH before heading for the oval where we started our main set. For this we were divided into relay teams of two and one person ran a longer loop of approx 800m out and round the undulating tracks as fast as possible while the other person ran a short loop of about 300m slowly meeting at the start to change positions. This was repeated four times before the cool-down lap of PH.

Total distance: 16km (including the warm up session at the start)

Calories burned: 950

Sunday, September 16, 2007

The batteries ran out!! more ways than one! The music on my ipod died in the second song during the Canberra Times Fun Run today so I tucked the cord into my top and listened to everyone's heavy breathing (including my own) instead. It was a great day for the 10km run with a slight breeze and fantastic conditions reaching 19deg. Later it clouded over and became quite cool but the run started at 9.45am and was great.

Ok, so my time was a bit slow (maybe it was the lack of music!!) but I really enjoyed myself. There were so many people out there I knew and so many familiar faces at the end, who come out of the woodwork to herald the Spring and enjoy the atmosphere. In fact the majority of my family turned up, the girls walking the babies and dog, our son running the 5km and Mr B running the 10km. Barb, Marg and I ran as "Three Slow Geese" and later we sat with friends and enjoyed a picnic, coffee and companionship. It was a pleasant way to spend the morning and some amazing times were achieved. This year, for the first time, we all wore timing chips on our shoes so accurate times will be recorded which will be interesting to see.

Today was also the first day of Floriade, Canberra's Spring festival of flowers and there were crowds of people out to see them. I have just checked last year's results and I ran this same run three minutes faster then - oops! I need some work but I know I can do this - just a few kilos to lose and a bit more training. I also noted from last year that the temperature was 23deg. Wow, that's two years in a row that the weather has been lovely for the CTFR - must be a good omen. Tomorrow's forecast, however, is for 12degrees - ouch!!

Today's stats:

Distance: 10km
Time taken: 54:30 (TBC)

Average pace per km: 5:27

Calories burned: 590

Spring has sprung (see below)!

Thursday, September 13, 2007

Two Posts in a Row - It must be Spring!

Tonight was speedygeoff's training at Dickson Oval. It was a gorgeous sunny spring day in Canberra and the evening was still very balmy and pleasant - ideal conditions for training. We ran a large loop of the oval and surrounds followed by a shorter version before running the main set of 6 x 400m with 400m recovery runs between each faster 400m. Then it was another chatty cool-down run. There was a great turn-out this evening. The new people from last week returned - that's always a positive and it was great to see so many people out there, the majority wearing shorts what's more!
Distance: 9.3km
Calories burned: 550

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Mid-week already!

Monday morning - Gym - 6.15am
I tried a new class this morning - a Fitball Class. It was 45mins of abs work and stretches etc using a fitball. It was a good class as I never do enough abs exercises and they definitely need work!

Monday evening - 5.30pm - Running - speedygeoff's Parliament House training
This evening Ken took the class in speedygeoff's absence. We ran a warm-up loop of PH and then ran intervals of 40secs fast and a gentle run back to the start on 2mins. This was repeated 12 times and we finished with a cool-down loop of PH.
Total distance: 7.3km
Calories burned: 480

Tuesday morning - 6.15am - Gym
This morning I attended a Bodypump class - hard work, sore muscles but it must be doing me good!
In the evening I was on babysitting duties so no chance to run.

Wednesday morning - 6.15am - Gym
RPM - Cycling class. Our instructor used a new tape today and it was pretty tough but I always feel as though it's doing me good - a great aerobic workout.

Wednesday evening - 6pm - Run
I ran a short run from home round the block - great conditions.
Time taken: 35:09
Distance: 5.95km
Average pace per km: 5:54

Sunday, September 09, 2007

The Week's Update

Wednesday - Gym - 6.15am
RPM - Hard cycle class

- speedygeoff's running - Dickson Oval
A long loop warm-up followed by a short loop
Main set - divided into relay teams of two and ran up to 12 x 330m sprints with 110m recovery jogs. Our team of two managed 10 repeats by the time the fastest team finished their 12. We followed this with another cool-down loop of the oval. There were a number of new people tonight which made it interesting.
Total distance: 8km

- Gym - 6.15am
RPM - Another cycle session - twice in one week - surely this must be doing some good. It's killing me!

Saturday - Long Run
This morning I ran at the civilized hour of 9.30am. It was a dull drizzly morning and as I set off the ground was still wet from the early morning rain. It didn't start really falling again until about the 12km point but I was warm by then and it didn't worry me unduly nor did it last the whole way home. In fact I really enjoyed my run this morning. The music was good and I felt at peace with the world after a stressful week at work. It was just so good to block my mind to other issues and focus only on the music and the run.
Distance: 20km
Time taken: 1hr 59mins 52secs
Average pace per km: 6mins
Calories burned: 1185
And yes, I finally managed to run 6min kms again. It's taken a long time to return to that pace for the longer distances. Here's hoping I can improve again. For now I am happy with that!

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Monday training
At speedygeoff's training at Parliament House tonight we ran a couple of warm-up laps before the main set which was run on the grassy slope in front of PH. We divided into teams of two and ran 260m zig zag diagonals across the grass. Marg and I ran 10 sets but the fastest pair ran 12 sets. This was followed by another cool-down loop of PH.
Total distance: 8km exactly

Tuesday gym - 6.15am
This morning I did a tough Bodypump class to help me face the auditors who were in our office today!
My Race Number for the CTFR has arrived along with the racing chip - seems far too serious to me! Marg, Barb and I are running as "Three Slow Geese" - slow being the operative word!

Saturday, September 01, 2007

Springtime in Canberra

Today was the first day of Spring and it was a gorgeous morning for running. Mr B was practising for his duathlon so he ran 10km, cycled 40km and ran another 5km whereas I just ran - slowly!

Distance: 16.2km
Time taken: 1hr 41mins
Average pace per km: 6:17

My legs felt like lumps of lead and my throat burned but I did want to run on such a beautiful day so I ran down to the lake then on past Giralang and on to the turn-off at Palmerston before turning round and heading back to Kaleen. It was a pleasant run but I had to stop a few times as my legs felt heavy and my body tired. Damn, damn, damn, I so need to pick up my pace. Bring on the healthy bugs.

Happy Fathers' Day tomorrow to all those dads out there. I hope the sun shines for you.