Saturday, May 31, 2008

Sunshine on my shoulders makes me happy!

This morning Mr B accompanied me for the first 1.5 hours of my long run which was really great. We ran from home through the back of the AIS, through the ANU grounds to the lake, on round the museum and at the ferry terminal Mr B left me to run over the bridge and back home giving him 22km while I continued on to Molonglo Reach for the extra distance before turning and returning home via Turner and O’Connor. Parts of my body were objecting today but apart from general tiredness I have had no ill effects afterwards. Running past Lake BG on my own I was struck by its beauty. We are so lucky in Canberra to have such beautiful places to run. The water was clear and still and the sky was very blue with a comfortable temperature of 19deg – just perfect. We didn’t leave home until 10.45am so it was a late run and the sun was at its best. Maybe I’m trying to acclimatise for the Gold Coast although by July our temperatures will have dropped considerably unfortunately.
Total distance: 32:54km
Time taken: 3:15:09
Average pace per km: 5:59
Calories burned: 1909
Best km: 5:39

Yesterday (Friday) I did my usual RPM class at the gym with a temporary instructor who obviously would have rather stayed in bed! She was just a little off-the-planet! However, we still managed a good work-out!
Tomorrow (Sunday) the plan is to join Rachelle on a bike ride as she has just purchased a brand new bike. I hope my legs won’t object too much.

Thursday, May 29, 2008

Dickson Oval with speedygeese

More photos from the training group dinner

Katie, Ken and Helen

Helen and Maria
Christine, Peter (PRB) and Neil

Tonight we ran two warm-up laps (yes, Rachelle and I made it for the start) before commencing our main session which was 3 x 1km fast with up to five minutes active rest between each km. After the first km speedycoach took note of our times and handicapped us accordingly. It was challenging but fun.
km times: 5:08, 5:07, 5:00
Thus I managed to run slightly quicker each time which pleased me. Mr B ran his last km in 4:08 so I have a wee way to go!!!
Total distance: 7:29
Calories burned: 431

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

Xena - Warrior Princess!

Same as, same as - 50mins RPM class at 6.15am followed by 15mins abs class and a mid-distance run with Ewen at 4.45pm. Wednesday is always a full day and I'm always falling asleep writing up my blog - oh dear!
However, it was another lovely sunny day and I was able to wear shorts and a sleeveless top for the run after work despite Ewen wearing a tracksuit for the entire distance! I was comfortable - perhaps we are just not running fast enough to warm him up! We ran off-road out towards the museum, around it and back towards the central part of the lake and two loops past the flags. On our second loop we were joined by Emma and her gorgeous white fluffy labradoodle, Zena - great company. It was quite dark by then but fortunately Ewen had his headlamp with him. It helped light up the track. Next week I'll remember to wear mine hopefully so we can avoid potholes without running too slowly. It was very pleasant out there this evening though. We start in daylight on Wednesdays and can watch the sun setting over the water but it becomes dark very early these days.
Total distance: 16.45km
Time taken: 1:40:43
Average pace per km: 6:07
Calories burned: 970

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

More piccies from dinner

Maria and Charlie

Pat, Gary and Katie

Roger, Miranda and hubby

Graeme, Cathy M and Christine

This morning I struggled out of bed (literally, as I was in a lovely deep sleep when the alarm woke me) and went to the gym for some strength training. I found it really difficult this morning, maybe I should have stayed in bed!

Monday, May 26, 2008

Busy Birthday Weekend!

strewth, Mr B and Rae
Peter and Marg

Mark and Barb. Jenny, speedygeoff and Rachelle

On Thursday our training group all went out to dinner instead of training at Dickson, to celebrate all things running and speedygeoff's 60th birthday. I will post some more photos over the next few days. It was a great night. On Friday morning I still rose early to attend my RPM class - another tough session although that was two days without running. However I more than made up for it over the weekend.

On Saturday, despite it being my birthday, I had scheduled in a three hour run so no sleeping in for me as I had a big day planned. Thus it was that I was out there running on a glorious Autumn morning enjoying the music on my ipod and actually loving running on my birthday. It was almost a religious experience; I guess they call it a runners' high as I ran past Molonglo Reach in the absolute peace and past Canberra's beautiful icons by the lake. There were lots of people out there enjoying the lovely day and the still water. I ran from home past Molonglo over the bridge towards Fyshwick and at the 1hour 30min point I turned and retraced my steps arriving home in exactly 3 hours at which point my legs were burning and I stood in the shower running icy cold water on my legs alternating with hot. It took a long time for the pain to go.

Total distance: 30.35km
Time taken: 3hours
Average pace per km: 5:55
Fastest km: 5:37
Calories burned: 1778 (that's a relief cos I consumed a few later!)
After my shower it was off to lunch with Mr B followed by the movies with my girls - fun!

Sunday - Masters' Run
Yes, we are soon to officially change our name from ACT Veterans Athletics to ACT Masters - woo hoo! It's been a long time coming but it will be so good.
This morning there was still no sleep-in as Mr B took part in a duathlon and I took part in the monthly handicap run, this time at Oakey Hill in the south of Canberra. The name of the run says it all really. Anything with "hill" or "Mt" in the name is a dead give-away! Yes, it was hilly and there was one particularly long hill which was a struggle but I was surprised at how good I felt after yesterday's run. It was tough but I do like the off-road hills so in spite of myself I did enjoy the event.
Distance: 7.5km
Time taken: 42:54 (almost 2mins faster than last year)
Best km: 5:02
Average pace per km: 5.43
Calories burned: 444
Handicap Group: 22
Place: 29th (out of 115 finishers in the long course)
Later I met up with a couple of girlfriends for a leisurely lunch and more celebrations. In the evening we bought Italian takeaways with all the family and enjoyed the birthday cake later! It was a lovely weekend.

Monday - Parliament House training
This morning I returned to the gym for another RPM class then after work it was a speed session at PH with speedygeoff. After the warm-up of a couple of loops of PH we ran the main session of 12 x (1min fast/1min slow) before another loop of PH for a cool down.
Total distance: 10km
Calories burned: 582

Tomorrow I have a strength/upper body session scheduled at the gym.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Busy Wednesday!

Actually I had a short day at work today. At 6.15am I had the 50mins RPM class at the gym followed by a 15mins killer abs class followed by brekkie at Black Pepper to celebrate our instructor's 40th birthday - lots of fun. However I didn't start work until 9.15am. Then I flexed off work at 4.15pm to meet Ewen to start our run a bit earlier as he had a meeting to attend in the early evening. We had a good run. My legs felt a bit tired and I was suffering from DOMS after my strength session yesterday at the gym but apart from that I was ok, just very hungry for some reason and both my hamstrings felt a bit tight! We ran a two lap course from work down to the lake and round the Central Basin area. This time we managed to stay where it was lit on our return journey. That's a good time of day to start and we may plan to start by 4.30pm in future so that we have some daylight at the start of the run. The sun was low in the sky and there were dark threatening clouds on our first loop but we reached the end of our run with no sign of rain and it was reasonably mild by then whereas earlier we had a strong Easterly wind as we crossed the bridges.
Total distance: 15.16km
Time taken: 1:30:57
Average pace per km: 5:59
Calories burned: 896

Monday, May 19, 2008

A Half Rest Day

Ok, I didn't go to RPM class at the gym this morning. The thought of getting up that early this morning just didn't do it for me. However, I did go to speedygeoff's training session at Parliament House this evening. It was very cold to start but we soon warmed up. We ran the loop of PH then headed for the grassy slope in front of PH where we ran 60secs fast/30secs slow x 10. Murphy's Law meant that I always seemed to end up either just before the start of the hill or just into it, never on the other side where it sloped slightly down! I was surprised that I could even put in a sprint after yesterday but I found the more I ran the better I felt. We then ran a warm down loop of PH.
Total distance: 7.5km

Sunday, May 18, 2008

A Cold Start for the Canberra Half Marathon

Indeed, the morning was very cold but NO rain, NO snow, at least where we ran. The wind was strong in places but it was manageable and it was fantastic to be out there amongst it with all those awesome runners and to catch up with just so many lovely running friends. Mr B ran a PB by 20secs in 1hr41:28, Kelly ran 1hr35mins which boggles my mind! The awesome CJ ran 1hr39mins, Gary ran 1:38:54 and our speedycoach ran 1:30:30. I felt good, I enjoyed it, I listened to my ipod on the way but could still chat to people as I had it turned quite low. It was exciting on the home stretch just to squeeze past Caroline by a few seconds - woo hoo! At the finish I cooled down very quickly and needed to pile on the warmer clothing. It was bitterly cold but the sun was shining and that was so much more than we expected. I am one very happy vegemite and the best part is I won my age group which meant I received a medal and a $20voucher from the Runners' Shop - yay! And then Mr B won a barrel draw and received a subscription to Runners World and a $30 voucher to the Runners Shop. Woo hoo!! All the speedygeese competitors ran well (obviously something to do with our speedycoach) and it was a fantastic morning. Well done too to those who ran the 5km on half marathon eve especially Ewen who ran a great time of 21:45 - awesome!

Total distance: 21.1km
Time taken: 1:55:05
Average pace per km: 5:27
Place in age group: 1st
Calories burned: 1244
Best km: 5:15

Some Splits:
1km: 5:25
5km - 27:36
10km: 54:51
15km: 1:21:48
20km: 1:49:06
21.1km: 1:55:05

Friday I did go to the Spin class at the Gym. It appears to be permanently a spin instead of RPM class on Fridays now and it's very tough but I'm confident that the leg work is helping make me stronger on the hills and there were certainly a few hills out there today!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

A Little Taper for the Half

Wednesday Run
Distance: 11.23km
Time taken: 1:08:22
Average pace per km: 6:08
Calories burned: 660
Ewen met me after work and we ran a variation of our usual run with a shorter loop of the Central Basin incorporating Anzac Parade. My schedule said 50mins although we ran slightly longer than that. Running beside the lake was absolutely stunning tonight. It was a perfect evening and the lights reflecting in the still water were awesome - definitely a beautiful time to run, just a shame that some parts were unlit and we had to watch our footing and dodge between cars when we changed directions and crossed roads. However, we will perfect this run soon so that we can run two loops and increase our usual distance (16km) by a couple of kms.
Thursday training at Dickson
Tonight eleven of us (plus our fearless leader) turned up for training and we split into 3 teams with our team being a team of 5. This meant that each person in our team sprinted hard for 100m then passed the baton to the next person while we gently ran approximately 200m between each baton change. Short sprints meant hard sprints and I really pushed myself for the short distances. It was fun. We totalled about 17 x 100m sprints plus the jogs between and the warm up and warm down.
Total distance: 8.4km
Now my schedule says two rest days before Sunday's half marathon but I may go to RPM in the morning at the gym if I can face our Friday Commando at that hour!!

Monday, May 12, 2008

A New Week Begins - Parliament House Sprints

After a late night I found it very difficult to roll out of bed and go to the gym for an RPM class. I turned the alarm off and dozed off for a minute but managed to arrive at my class just in time for the last bike - in the back row! RPM is lots of hard work and never feels easier but after a shower it feels like a good way to start the day. After work it was training at Parliament House with speedygeoff back in charge.
A couple of warm-up loops followed by a main set made up of:
8 x 80secs sprints and when the whistle blew at the end of the 80secs we jogged slowly back to the start within 4 minutes.
Then another warm-down loop of PH.
Total distance: 8km exactly!

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Happy Mothers' Day!

I do hope all you mothers out there had a wonderful day. I certainly enjoyed mine. This morning I ran down to Lake Ginninderra to meet my daughter at Black Pepper and from there we walked briskly round the lake and back to Black Pepper for a lovely coffee. An hour later we met up with the rest of the family (apart from Mr B who is currently in NZ) for a delightful lunch at the Yarralumla Nursery. We sat outside where the little ones could run around in the gorgeous grounds and although it wasn't quite as hot as yesterday it was still a lovely day for being outside. A glass of wine, a yummy lunch, exciting pressies - being a mum rules!!
Run Distance: 6km
Time taken: 34.44mins
Average pace per km: 5:46
Calories burned: 355

Total distance for week: 60km

Walk distance: 7.43km
Time taken: 1hr 9mins (not as efficient as running but very pleasant)
Calories burned: 282

Saturday, May 10, 2008

Gods' in His heaven, all's right with the world!

What an absolute stunner of a day it was today - just perfect for a run. I didn't set off until 10am and the sun was warm by then. I decided to try quite a different course and ran from home past the AIS and through the stunning tree-lined back streets of O'Connor where the Autumn leaves were magnificent oranges, golds and browns. I just love this time of year in Canberra especially on a day like today, not a breath of wind, just a clear blue sky and sunshine but not too hot - a pleasant 20deg by the middle of the day - just beautiful. I ran on to Lake Burley Griffin and ran the 16km loop of the lake from the ferry terminal. The plan was to run 2hrs 40mins but I underestimated the distance especially as I ran a bit of a convoluting course, being me and always becoming lost wherever I go! However, I ran towards home via Lyneham and having reached Tilleys at the 30km mark I stopped! After all Tilleys is one of the best coffee spots in Canberra in my opinion and I had a few dollars in my bottle bag, just enough for raisin toast and a coffee. Boy was it good!! I also drank oodles of water. When I reached the ferry terminal on my return journey round the lake I refilled all my drink bottles and drank every one. At Tilleys I had several more glasses. Now, whether this had anything to do with the cocktail party I attended last night or whether it was my cold dehydrating me or indeed the beautiful sunshine, who knows but I obviously needed to hydrate heaps which I did! I also called a friend who met me at Tilleys and drove me home - phew, I didn't have to walk the extra 5km - my legs had definitely had enough although I have had no ill effects afterwards and feel surprisingly good. Woo hoo!
Distance: 30km
Time taken: 2:58:18
Average pace per km: 5:56
Calories burned: 1755
Best km: 5:38

Thursday, May 08, 2008

No speed for me!

Tonight I went to training probably against my better judgement but I just chose to jog the entire session round and round the track as my breathing and my cold are definitely not right yet. It looked like a really good session too which was disappointing for me. However, I decided against speed work as there was just no energy left in me at all. I even found the warm-up difficult. After the session we toasted speedygeoff's health with champagne welcoming him back and singing Happy Birthday to our esteemed leader.
Distance: 8km

Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Winter bugs descend upon me!

I spent yesterday at home from work with a very bad cold and headache. I could feel the sore throat starting on Monday afternoon when I left work early to babysit the grandchildren. No training for me Monday night and as a consequence today (Wed) is the first day I have run since Saturday and it was very very slow! Poor Ewen was very patient with me as I struggled to keep going. We tried a little detour from our usual run endeavouring to keep to where there was some light but it wasn't very successful. We'll go in a different direction again next week. The sky becomes dark very early in the evening and it's not winter yet. In fact the days are very sunny and beautiful but the evenings and early morning are very dark and cool.
Distance: 15.72km
Time taken: 1:39
Average pace per km: 6:18
Calories burned: 990

Saturday, May 03, 2008

Another Run Bites the Dust!

This morning Mr B kept me company for 13km of my scheduled long run. It is a gorgeous Autumn day today. Certainly we started off with long sleeved tops but by 5km mine was tied round my waist as the sun was streaming down. The leaves were really pretty hues of brown and gold and it was very pleasant til I stopped at the 2hour 41mins mark to walk the rest of the way as that was my scheduled time. At that point my legs just burned with pain for the last 2km walking. On arrival at home I took advice from Two Fruits and filled a large tub with cold water and stood in it til the pain subsided. Cold is good! I feel better now and ready to prepare for the family dinner this evening - looks like a bbq might be a goer!
Distance: 27km
Time taken: 2:41:30
Calories burned: 1592
Average pace per km: 5:58

Friday, May 02, 2008

I'm Still Breathing (just)!

Yesterday Rachelle and I drove to Dickson for a session like last week's. We missed the first half of the warm-up but managed to join in as the others were returning from their long warm-up loop and run the second shorter loop of the oval. The main set was 12 x 100m slow/200m fast. Then we finished with another warm-down loop of the large oval. There were ten of us at training although a few had to leave before the warm-down. It was a very chilly night but we did strip down to singlet tops for the sprints and I definitely ran my hardest, completed the session and was not last to finish - that's always a bonus! Neil took our session tonight as speedygeoff is still galavanting, currently in Adelaide, celebrating his big forthcoming 60th birthday!
Total distance: 7.3km
This morning it was a trip to the gym for an RPM/Spin session. We had a stand-in instructor and if you have watched The Biggest Loser you will understand what I mean when I say she reminded me of the Commando. OMG - she worked us sooooo hard and the music was soooo loud and the beat so fast. We spent a lot of the session climbing hills (that is, standing on the bike and pushing in a very hard gear) - but up, down, up, down to the beat very quickly. We did not even draw breath, no gaps between tracks at all, for the full 45 mins. I thought our usual instructor was hard but oh boy, she has nothing on Sophie - ouch!