Thursday, July 31, 2008

C'mon Everybody

At speedygeoff''s training tonight we did the reverse of last week. We started with a couple of warm-up laps then our main session consisted of:
3 x [300 easy/200 hard; 300 easy/300 hard; 400 easy/500 hard] - I think!! I was a little confused especially when I had to race off for a loo break towards the end of the second set and then had to attempt to catch up!
We had a warm-down lap of the oval for finish.
Total distance (for me - I missed half of the first warm-up loop) - 9km
Calories burned: 500
It was a small group tonight - only 9 of us turned up which is unusual - the cold must have frightened everybody away! However we did welcome one newcomer so that was good.

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

One Boy, Two Little Girls

Ewen runs 3km with a "little" competitor at High Noon

This morning was the usual RPM class followed by abs and after work this afternoon Rachelle joined Ewen and I on our afternoon run from the office to the lake and on to the bridge past Molonglo Reach where we turned and returned to the office. For the first half of the run my legs felt heavy and tired but after the turn-around I started to feel quite good and a whole lot more comfortable. It was a very cold night especially when the breeze picked up. We did take our long sleeves off for a short time but on the return trip the wind picked up and we were glad to put them on again! At one stage I tripped on a rock and nearly did a CJ but managed to stop myself just as the ground was rushing up to meet me - phew! Rachelle struggled a bit with a sore foot and when we finished our run Ewen gave a demo on a different way of tying shoe laces!

Total distance: 14.12km

Time taken: 1:25:34

Average pace per km: 6:03 (exactly the same as last week)

Calories burned: 826

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

You Gave me a Mountain!

No sleep-ins for me this weekend with the Bush Capital on Saturday and on duty at Mt Taylor on Sunday. I had opted for the 16km distance for the Bush Capital on a very very chilly morning.
Although our start was not until 9.10am it was still bitingly cold. I started off with a long-sleeved top but I did discard my gloves and ear warmers and ran in shorts rather than leggings. It took me nearly 5km before my frozen fingers had any feeling in them and another 5km before I wrapped my long-sleeved top round my waist. There were lots of hills but also lots of lovely downhills which I treated with much respect as there were lots of loose stones and I didn't want to fall flat on my face (again). This was probably wise as there were a couple of nasty falls from others on the course. The sun shone through the clouds and it turned out to be a lovely day (sunny anyway, but still cold). I passed a large group of curious kangaroos and stopped to check on a fellow runner who had stopped breathless due to a nasty cold and was walking with difficulty.
It was a lovely off-road run - tough but really pleasant and although I was slow I enjoyed the event and may even consider upping it to the 25km course next year. There were so many friends out there running in different events. Jen (from Sydney) ran really well in the 10km event and Mango, CJ and speedy speedygeoff in the 25km while Mr B and Rachelle ran good times in the 16km, Kelley blitzed the 42.2km and Steve ran an awesome 60km (phew)! Later in the afternoon when all the races were over I met up with Rachelle, CJ, Aki, Jen and later Mango at Tilleys for good coffee and to hear all about Jen's forthcoming amazing adventures.
Distance: 16km
Time taken: 1:36:45
Average pace per km: 6:04
Calories burned: 925


I was on duty at the Mt Taylor handicap in the morning - another freezing cold day when I probably would have been better off running to warm up. Rachelle and I whizzed out to the AIS track after the run to cheer on Aki in the 800m and Yelena and Ewen in the 3000m as well as various other runners we recognised. It was fun and they all did great times.

The long and the short of it!

Yelena is flying!

Monday - Parliament House
Not many of us fronted up for training tonight - probably related to the after effects of a big weekend and to the extremely cold evening which grew even colder when the wind set in towards the end of the session. After a couple of warm-up laps we ran on the grassy bank in front of PH jogging the diagonals across the grass and sprinting up the hills on each side (about 90m each hill). We repeated each set 10 times. Our top layers came off as we warmed up but soon went on again in time for the cool down.
Total distance: 10km

Incidentally I highly recommend Mamma Mia as a light entertaining and "fun" movie which Mr B and I throughly enjoyed on Sunday night at the premium cinema!

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Such a Night!

Sometimes it proves difficult to match Elvis songs to the training session. In response to his comment NEVER will I "move on" from my training partner, Ewen. It's awesome running with him for company on a Wednesday. We have such interesting conversations!
Tonight, however, I went to speedygeoff's session at Dickson Oval. I started off wearing earwarmers, a long sleeved top and gloves but did strip down to a singlet without gloves and earwarmers by the middle of the main set.
Rachelle and I missed the first warm-up lap but managed to fit in one loop before the main set. It was different tonight. We ran: 3 x [500 hard / 400 easy + 300 hard / 300 easy + 200 hard / 300 easy] in lane 2. Some of the faster people, including our very fast new starter, Steve, managed 4 sets but 3 sets was quite enough for the rest of us mere mortals. We finished with a warm down loop of 1.2km wrapped up in all our warm gear again - brrrrr! It took ages to feel warm again afterwards. This has been a very cold week with frosty early morning temperatures of minus 2 to minus 4. Dress warmly on Saturday Jen!!
Total distance: 8km

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

I'm Movin' On

I forced myself out of my warm bed for an RPM session this morning with minus 4 being the outside temperature - brrrr! I was glad to warm up pretty quickly at the RPM class followed by killer abs - those side planks are gruesome!
Ewen met me after work for a slightly shorter run than usual. We ran for 7km which was just before crossing the bridge after Molonglo Reach then turned and ran back. The evening was perfectly still, the lake was perfectly still, even the bunnies stopped to stare before running off. It seemed we were the only ones "movin' on" until a few cyclists raced past with their bright headlights. On the return trip the lights on the lake were beautiful and the carillon especially looked fantastic. It was a great evening in spite of the cold and we ran at a comfortable pace.
Total distance: 14km
Time taken: 1:24:43
Average pace per km: 6:03
Calories burned: 830

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

It Keeps Right On A-Hurtin'

Mr B and Carolyne at the turn-around

Robyn smiles at the turn-around

Mr B runs to his bike after the first run leg

Caroline at the bike transition

Is that pain on Mr B's face?

Well done duathletes!

Monday, July 21, 2008

Husky Dusky Day

And so another week begins! Yesterday Mr B completed a great race in the duathlon. As predicted it was a freezing cold morning but at least it didn't rain until the afternoon when it was a beautiful steady fall which lasted for hours. In the morning however the rain stayed away and it was cool with cloud cover but fortunately no mist. In fact the conditions, although very chilly, were really good for at least the running part of the event and by the time they rode their bikes they had warmed up so it wasn't so bad apparently AND there was a coffee machine which, as a cheersquad person, I took full advantage of!
This morning our RPM Monday/Wednesday instructor had returned from a cycling tour in Cambodia ready to motivate us with a hard session and encouraging us to take part in a similar tour in the future saying it was just fantastic - sounds a great experience indeed.
Later in the early evening it was back to the hills at speedygeoff's Parliament House session. After a two loop warm-up we ran 20 x 100m hill repeats, with the time being called out by our speedy leader as we approached the top of the hill each time, putting the pressure on, to say the least! Then a warm-down loop of PH.
Total distance: 8.2km
Calories burned: 485

Footnote: speedygeoff has inspired me to use Elvis Presley songs for my blog title. He uses the Beatles so I will use Elvis. There are hundreds of them so I may become tired of them before I run out!

Saturday, July 19, 2008

De-stressing on the Hills!

Yesterday my only exercise was a tough RPM class at the gym before work. This morning however the sun was shining and although the air was very fresh the sky was blue and a run was definitely the way to go especially after the absolutely horrible day I had at work yesterday. I do think runners have a great way of relieving stress! It really does help.

I set off from home about 10am (very civilized hour indeed in this cold weather) and ran to Rachelle's house where we waited for Jodie to join us before running to collect Miranda from her house, then off we all ran to O'Connor Ridge and on to Black Mountain Reserve and the Botanical Gardens, through the gardens and back the way we came. It was a lovely run, hilly, mainly off-road, definitely tough in parts but pleasant and different. I even wore shorts and wrapped my long-sleeved top round my waist after about 5km.

Total distance: 20.15km
Time taken: 2hours 17mins

Average pace per km: 6:48 (blame those hills!)

Calories burned: 1137

Tomorrow's forecast is not good and Mr B is competing in the duathlon first thing in the morning. I will be there to cheer him on but hopefully the rain and wind will stay away - nothing worse than battling the elements while riding a bike except perhaps spectating in the freezing cold - hope they have coffee!!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Wombat Wednesday and speedy Thursday

Yesterday it was back to the 'after work' run with Ewen, both of us warmly dressed for the cold weather. In fact it was much milder than anticipated and I even took off my long sleeved top and tied it round my waist. The evenings stay lighter about half an hour longer now as we are past the shortest day but once the light disappeared at about the 8km mark I tried out my new ultra-light (no pun intended) clip-on head lamp which PRB gave me to try. It was very effective indeed.
We had a pleasant run but it felt faster than it actually was. My hamstring was niggly (still) and I had strange twinges in my knees which I didn't like but after the warm up things improved and we ran the second half comfortably. We ran from work down over the bridge past Molonglo Reach and back and saw heaps of active bunnies and ducks on the way and even spotted a huge water rat heading off into the marsh by the lake. There's always heaps of interesting creatures (apart from us) to spot on our Wednesday runs.
Total distance: 16.01km
Time taken: 1:39:25
Average pace per km: 6:12
Calories burned: 954

Thursday - speedy's session - Dickson Oval
Tonight I managed to leave my Garmin seeking a satelite on my windowsill at work - oops! Thus I had to calculate the total distance which we estimated to be 7.5km. We ran two 1.2km warm-up loops and followed this with all of us running 600m as fast as possible in order for speedycoach to establish our handicap. We were then split into teams of two for a relay of 4 x 600m sprints with a 200m jog back to the start. I was partnered with Rod who is one of the very fastest runners in the group which meant there was little rest for me on reaching the starting point each time. It was challenging but fun. We finished with a warm down loop of 1.2km.
Total distance: 7.5km (estimated)

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Just another Manic Monday!

Back to RPM this morning for a tough hilly climb in and out of the saddle just to start my week right!

After work Rachelle and I headed off to Parliament House for speedygeoff’s session which took place as follows:

Two warm-up loops of PH followed by 20 x 100m hill repeats on 90 seconds finishing with a warm-down loop of PH.

Total distance: 8.6km

I found the first warm-up loop quite tough and felt rather sluggish but I took note of the advice of our speedycoach and took the hills gently. I felt quite comfortable and even managed to push myself a little for the two “fast” repeats that we incorporated. On the whole it was actually fun (did I say that, about hills?) and I was glad that I decided to accept the challenge and take part in the session rather than jog off for a longer run.

There was not a huge turnout tonight which I put down to school holidays which affect some of our group. However, there were still enough of us to make the warm-up and warm-down a great opportunity to catch up with everyone’s news.

Tuesday - Today
I recovered well after yesterday’s session and managed a thorough upper body weights session at the gym early this morning. Tomorrow I will return to my Wed mid-week run with Ewen after work. We have some catching up to do after the Gold Coast.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

A Slow Off-Road Run to Stretch the Legs

At the very civilized hour of 11am I met up with Rachelle and we ran to meet Miranda and from there ran on to O'Connor Ridge for a hilly off-road gentle (?) run. This was my first run since the GC marathon and I have to admit the first 5km really hurt. I felt pain where it had never been before and at the top of one very steep hill where we all resorted to walking I spent some time stretching before we resumed our run. The next few km felt much better and after leaving Miranda at her house, R and I continued on to Tilleys where we spent 2 1/2 hours over a very leisurely lunch and a coffee or two. It was so relaxing and pleasant. The weather, although brisk (very), was at least sunny and it was lovely to run slowly on those hills. I think it helped me although I do wonder if I'm doing the right thing by having entered the 16km Bush Capital event in a couple of weeks - lots of hills there. Hmmm, am I crazy I wonder? These poor legs definitely suffered today.
Total distance: 10.07km
Time taken: unmentionable!!
Calories burned: 600

No PB's this time!

This morning there is a white frost out there but it looks like being a lovely sunny day which is more than I can say for the weather over the few days we were at the Gold Coast. However I do believe that the day after we flew back to COLD Canberra Mr B returned to the beach for a swim and the sun was warm and beautiful - grrrrr - the green-eyed monster has reared its head! CJ and I flew to Brisbane on Friday where Mr B met us and drove us to our apartment at Berriwa Waters. We then went to registration to collect our numbers, time chips etc and spend money at the Expo where we caught up with a few familiar faces. That evening we met up with Luckylegs, Ewen and Roger for a lovely meal at Main Beach after which we walked round to admire LL's absolutely fabulous apartment. She had been upgraded from a one bedroom apartment to this exotic dream of a place where one would never want to leave - it was amazing to say the least!
On Sat we met up with Ewen and Katy (ihatetoast) for a lovely long relaxed lunch. It was awesome to have the opportunity for a real catch-up. As the day progressed so did the wind. In the evening we were staring out at rain and fierce gail force winds. During the night we could hear the wind rattling the windows and we were just a tad worried about conditions next morning. However, although there was still a cold wind when we were eating brekkie, by the time we headed down to the start of the half for Mr B the wind was minimal and although it was cold and bleak the rain had stopped and the conditions were reasonable - sigh of relief! Mr B's race started 20mins before ours and we just managed to see the start after three nervous loo visits!
I started quite near the four hour black balloons intending to keep them in sight. At about the 3km mark they were already heading off into the distance. For a while there I kept them in distant sight and then I resigned myself to the fact that this time I was not going to set any PBs so I decided to settle back and enjoy the atmosphere and the day in the best way possible. No point in stressing about time, better to just do it. Indeed there were a few times during my training and injuries before the day that I seriously didn't think I would make it to the start line so I felt lucky and happy that I was actually here and running another marathon.
It was a huge event and there were lots of people running who I recognised. I missed catching up with lots of Cool Runners but I did see a great crowd of them cheering towards the end and indeed I caught up with quite a few old and new friends before and after the run which was great. In the middle of the run I felt comfortable and relaxed. I ran with my music as there were not many spots where spectators could cheer. I tried to stay in the middle of the road as I found the slope of the road on each side of the white line difficult to negotiate. Although it was not a hot day by any means the humidity was noticeable for us Canberrans and I tended to take a drink at every drink station. When the sun came out for a brief glimpse it felt quite hot in fact!
Mr B finished his run in 1hr41:39 on his chip time. He had a good run but still needs to keep running to beat his goal of 100mins.
I ran my second slowest marathon, the slowest since my first one in 2001. However, it was my first Gold Coast marathon and the only marathon I have run out of Canberra so it was a new experience for me. I loved the social aspect of it but summing up I think I prefer the Canberra course, in spite of the hills and the altitude.
Total distance: 42.195km
Time taken (chip time): 4:10:14
Category place: 13th (out of about 68)
Average pace per km: 5:53
Calories burned: 2527
And now it's back to the drawing board. The sun is calling me - I am ready to run!

Thursday, July 03, 2008

Countdown - last entry before the Gold Coast!

This afternoon I flexed off work early and went for a very slow gentle run before tidying the house and packing for tomorrow. As my hamstring was still uncomfortable I only ran 5km and applied a heat pack at the physio's suggestion this afternoon. Perhaps two rest days will help (fingers crossed)! I can't do anymore than this - just think positive and just do it! I'm really looking forward to catching up with lots of friends at the Gold Coast and to much warmer weather and a lovely mini break! Woo hoo - stay away wind, come in sunshine!

Wednesday, July 02, 2008

Every Step I Took!

Every single step - I felt it. It hurt! Not a good tapering run at all! I'm not sure if it was a result of Monday's training, the physio visit yesterday or the RPM class this morning but my upper calf/hamstring hurt like crazy every step of my run tonight. It was just an easy tapering run on my own straight from work without Ewen who has already left for the Gold Coast. I ran, ipod attached, from work down to the lake past the carillon then turned at 25mins and returned to the office. I felt constant pain. It didn't ease off as it normally would and it was not a pleasant run. Tomorrow morning I have my last physio appointment - I hope miracles can be performed! All I know is that I could never run 42km in the pain I was in today. I am feeling frustrated - grrrr! However, tomorrow is another day and hopefully after the physio visit I will be able to run without pain again. Fingers crossed!
Total distance: 8:27km
Time taken: 50.55
Average pace per km: 6:09
Calories burned: 490