Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Autumn Showers

By the time I ran out the door this morning rain was gently falling down. It didn't look like stopping anytime soon so I donned a spray jacket and went running anyway. It was beautiful - rain in Canberra is a rare beauty indeed. After ten minutes I took the jacket off as I was very warm. I also wore sunglasses as the sun was shining at the same time as it rained. Autumn in Canberra - interesting, especially when it rains. Half way through the run the rain stopped. Ah well, at least it lasted a solid half hour - better than nothing. Then the sun shone brightly and it was quite hot for the rest of the run.
Total distance: 11km
Time taken: 1:07:05
Average pace per km: 6:05
Calories burned: 652
Then later I went for a sports/remedial massage and now I have a sore butt!

Monday, March 30, 2009

Three Weeks' Taper

That's the theory, however today wasn't much of a taper! This morning I followed CJ's strength program at the gym and later today I went to the early warm-up of the training group at 4.30pm and ran 8km with Ewen and Miranda before joining the rest of the group for the main session starting at 5.30pm. Tonight's session, after the warm-up loops of PH, consisted of 3 x fast undulating 920m loops of the trails with 3 x slow runs in-between incorporating a workout on the fitness trail as we went. We finished with a short warm-down.
Total distance: 16.3km

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Masters' Monthly Handicap at Stromlo

It was an absolutely perfect morning for running as the sun didn't become really hot until we had finished running. The course started at Stromlo Forest Park where we ran our usual Cross Country loop then ran out on the dirt where the forest used to be before the Canberra fires about 5 years ago. It was undulating but not too hilly and an out and back course so we could high five others going in the opposite direction. I started in Group 21 and came in 16th out of 99 starters in the longer course of 8km. I felt surprisingly ok after yesterday's long run. Sometimes a long run the day before a race can help. I also managed to arrive in time to do a warm-up before the start which always helps!
Total distance: 8km (garmin says 8.2km)
Time taken: 44:14
Average pace per km: 5:32 (garmin says 5:23)
Place: 16th (out of 99)
Handicap group: 21
Calories burned: 486

Warm up run: 1:09
Total rounded-down distance for day: 9km
Total distance for week: 101km - woo hoo!

Saturday, March 28, 2009

Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds!

Yes indeed - LSD - and I feel good - no bad after effects, no chaffing and a good recovery - yay! This morning I left home at 7.15am and ran via Lyneham down to Lake BG past the ferry terminal and on to Regatta Point where I met up with Ewen who ran with me for the next 15km past Molonglo Reach and round East Basin. We did stop briefly to watch a dragon boat race which was pretty exciting. Then over the bridges and back to Regatta Point where Ewen left me and I continued home again to the sound of music. It was great to have good company for the middle part of the run round the lake.
Today I wore a top I don't wear very often, new shorts, new shoes and a different crop top. For the first time this year I didn't chaff anywhere on a long run - so fantastic. I guess that decides what I will wear for the marathon! The singlet's not particularly flattering but, as CJ so correctly pointed out at coffee later, that won't really be worrying me too much after the 30km mark!!
Total distance: 35km
Time taken: 3:34:51
Average pace per km: 6:05
Calories burned: 2073
And tomorrow morning is the Masters' Handicap at Stromlo - that will make a good total of kms for the week!

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Round and round and round we go!

I decided that in order to cover my distance today it would be fortuitous to complete the hour run on the track tonight. Thus it was that I dragged Mr B along to be my lap counter for the last event of the night - the hour run. As it happened he also lap scored for Marg. Oh boy, it is so boring running round and round the flat track for an hour without a break or even an opportunity to stop for a drink. Some people just kept flying past lapping me (including speedy Ewen, Roger and pocket rocket Sue) - quite demoralising seeing them fly past again and again as I trotted around for yet another lap.
Total distance: 10.852 (just missed lapping Marg the second time and also just missed the 11km)
Time taken: 1 hour!!!
Average pace per km: 5:37 (just slightly faster than marathon pace)
Now all I have to do is keep up that pace for 42.2km and I will make the distance in under 4hours - ha ha ha - not possible, that was the longest hour in eternity!!
Total distance including warm-up: 12km

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Double Trouble

8.15am - short run
I ran a short run from home before heading for the gym. I purposely ran fairly gently as it was the final Summer Series race later in the day.
Total distance: 6.1km
Time taken: 37:17
Average pace per km: 6:06
Calories burned: 360

I went to a 9.30am class at the gym under the illusion that it would be nice and gentle because of the time it was held - big mistake! It was titled TBC - Total Body Conditioning - and it was designed to focus on the heart, muscle and mind. The description sounded fine but, unless they replaced this with a different class, it is a tough session with the first 3/4 of it being quite aerobic. At least the last 15mins included stretching and abs - always a good thing!

Later in the day I headed for Stromlo Forest Park where the final summer series run was held. My time was 20secs slower than my previous race at that location - damn, why don't I get faster?
Total distance: 5km (plus 550m warm-up)
Time taken: 27:29
Average pace per km: 5:21
Calories burned: 301

Total distance for day: 11.65km

Then off to a sub-committee meeting for Masters' Athletics - it's all go, go, go!

Wednesday - today's medium distance - 7.15am - another very warm day
This morning I had an early start as I had a meeting at 10.30am in the city and wanted to complete my scheduled run first. Yes, I know I'm retired but it seems people want me out there so I've become a part-time consultant by default!!
Anyway, I ran from home to and round Lake G then home the long way extending it a little at the other end to make the distance.
Total distance: 20km
Time taken: 1:59:01
Average pace per km: 5:57
Calories burned: 1178

Monday, March 23, 2009

Only Four Weeks to Go!

This morning I went to the gym to follow CJ's exercise program. It took me an hour to do the full session but it was a good start to the day.
I managed to arrive at PH for the early start of speedychief's training at 4.30pm which meant speedychief, Miranda, Ewen and I could run 7km before the main session started at 5.30pm.
After the warm-up loop of PH we were divided into teams of two for relays. One team member ran on a fast undulating loop while the other ran a slower shorter loop inbetween. It was tough but fun. Then to top it off we headed for the killer hill to do attrition sprints to the top. Fortunately I was out in the first attempt as the last five to reach the top were eliminated. The overall winner was Joel after Tim was given a handicap to hold him back!
Total distance: 13.7km
Calories burned: 826

Sunday, March 22, 2009

Strewth - we're off to New York!

It's true - the airfares are very cheap right now and Mr B has booked the flights. We leave in June for LA and New York - how exciting! It will be summer there too so more sunshine to enjoy.
Today I ran late in the day before going out for dinner with friends to replace all the calories (plus more) I had lost! I just ran a short steady run from home along the cycle track to the tunnel past Giralang before turning and running back the way I had come.

Total distance: 8km
Time taken: 45:57
Average pace per km: 5:44
Calories burned: 470

Total distance for week: 93km

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Another Long Run with my Mates!

This morning dawned cool (almost frosty) - ideal conditions for running for a very long time as the forecast was for 30deg later in the morning. I met up with the usual suspects at 7am and was pleasantly surprised when Cathy M joined us after her fantastic SFT last weekend. Roy and I ran the shorter loop of Mt Ainslie avoiding Mt Majura this time (as did most of the others) and after 10km ran along Anzac Pde to the lake and towards Molonglo Reach where we met up with Ewen who ran with us through the wetlands and round past Commonwealth Bridge (Roy left us to head back to the start) and back to Molonglo Reach where I left Ewen and ran on for another 5km to make up the distance.
Back at the lake off came the shoes and I joined Ewen in the water up to my thighs to ease the legs - absolute heaven. Ewen drove me back to the War Memorial where my car was parked and we enjoyed a wonderful cold drink followed by coffee and a yummy fruit pastry. It was great catching up with Ewen and hearing all about his SFT adventures (looking forward to that post Ewen - hurry up). He did a 'Good Samaritan' deed on our run by chasing a family of ducks across the road so that they took off in flight to avoid the next oncoming car!

Total distance: 34km
Time taken: 3:39:30
Average pace per km: 6:27 (those hills at the start definitely slowed me down)
Calories burned: 2000 (and I've sure made up for it since!)

It's turned into a stunning day and hopefully a perfect evening. We may well be taking our grandchildren to Skyfire tonight if Master Two has his afternoon sleep! It should be fun!

Thursday, March 19, 2009

Track Session

This evening I just made it to the start of the Spiral Handicap at the AIS track not having time for a warm-up which was a mistake. Life is just too busy!! It was a 7 lap spiral and I started from Group 34. The runners were mainly made up of males. In fact there were only three females competing. Roy put on a real sprint and I couldn't catch him. Instead I ran just behind Laurie with him encouraging me every step of the way.
Distance: 2.92km (according to garmin)
Time taken: 15:16
Average pace per km: 5:13
Calories burned: 170

After the spiral I went for a gentle undulating run with speedychief to warm up (!) for the next event.
Distance: 3.07km

The next event I ran was the 3km GM series.
Distance: 3km (d'uh)
Time taken: 15:23:68
Average pace per km: 5:08
Calories burned: 175

Total distance for day: 9km

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

A Balmy Autumn Day

RPM is becoming busier in the mornings and when I arrived this morning all the bikes were taken. Therefore I decided to memorise the program CJ had set for me as I had left the written program at home. However, when I checked later I had remembered it all almost perfectly. I did make it to the abs class afterwards.

Today turned into quite a hot sunny day and I left my run until quite late, probably a bit too late as it turned out as it was very dark by the time I returned home and the cycle paths were not lit so I ran with caution. The forecast is for hot days going into the middle of next week. The best part of this time of year is that the nights cool down enough to sleep comfortably and the days don't become hot until late morning.

I ran from home to and round Lake Ginninderra and home the long way to make the correct distance. Interestingly as I approached the last few kms of the run my ipod played "I Want to be Old Before I die" followed directly afterwards by "I want to be 18 til I die" which was an amusing contrast in terms!

Total distance: 18.2km
Time taken: 1hr53mins
Average pace per km: 6:12
Calories burned: 1073

I have decided that this marathon will be just a case of completing it and not to worry about the time or I will be disappointed. I'm running far too slowly in training.

Fartlek on Rolling Hills

Having spent the morning looking after Master Two year old grandson (he's very cute) I didn't have a chance to run until mid afternoon when the sun was at its hottest. I ran a 15mins warm up (that was really tough as I was under the full sun at that stage) before heading for the trails and hills of North Lyneham ridge. There was a sign on the gate stating that bulldozers may be around during March and April and sure enough a lot of the uneven surfaces had been rolled flat. This however had created even more dust although there were less obstacles on the way. I headed for a shaded uphill section (perfect) to do my hill repeats.
My main session was:
2 x 60secs/60secs float
4 x 30secs/30secs float
2 x 60secs/60secs float
4 x 30secs/30secs float
2 x 60secs/60secs float
Not sure about the float but I certainly enjoyed the downhill bits back to the starting point. I finished the session by jogging a loop of the Nth Lyneham ridge before heading for home.
Total distance: 12km
Calories burned: 700
In the evening Mr B and I headed out to the AIS to see Chris Isaak in concert - another great performer - wow! This was a Christmas gift - talk about making the most of the good life - awesome!

Monday, March 16, 2009

Five Weeks to Marathon

Yesterday morning, before leaving for Sydney, I squeezed in a short run to make up my total for the week. It was slow but not as bad as I expected after yesterday's hills.

Total distance: 9km
Average pace per km: 6:12
Calories burned: 543

Total distance for week: 95km

A New Week
Last night we attended the Coldplay concert in Sydney and it was absolutely awesome. We stayed with our daughters in their apartment thus killing two birds with one stone - catch up with the kids and a fantastic concert. We drove back this afternoon after a lovely lunch with the girls and youngest daughter's partner. We arrived back in Canberra cutting the time a little fine for making it to training. Instead I ran a gentle run from home desperately seeking bushes on the way back after consuming too much junk food on our one day and night away!

Total distance: 12km
Time taken: 1:13:53
Average pace per km: 6:09
Calories burned: 710

Saturday, March 14, 2009

The Long and Dusty Trail!

Phew, maybe I was out in sympathy with the six footers this morning but I managed all of my run on the hills and it was hard, hot and slow. I met up with Mike, Graeme, Chris, Roy, Nadine and Brett at the War Memorial carpark and we walked to our starting points on Mt Ainslie.
There we dispersed in two different directions, the short course and the long. I ran with Nadine, Roy and Brett and we ran our usual course up and over to the highway and back (about 18km) then Roy and I ran on to the Masters' Handicap course. Nadine caught up with us there as she had detoured to stock up on water (a wise decision as the weather was humid and we became dehydrated very quickly). She ran round the whole of that loop while Roy and I turned round and ran back past the war memorial again to restock on our water.
At this point Roy stopped but I still had 8km to go so ran back out over Mt Ainslie again on my own sighting Nadine on her return. I also spotted an enormous lizard (?) - a really big one covering a quarter of the track, and lots and lots of kangaroos everywhere no doubt looking hopefully for water. It has been threatening rain all day but not a drop has fallen. The clouds are becoming blacker and blacker outside now though and the wind has picked up so any minute now??
I'm wondering how my six foot tracker friends have gone today. I thought of them a lot this morning on my dusty run imagining how much tougher their run would be and hoping that they had a great day for it after so much training.
I eventually completed my scheduled run and it took nearly four hours - oh dear, it was tough and slow but at least it's done! It was great to have company for most of the way. Roy waited for me while I finished my last 8km and we enjoyed a beautiful coffee afterwards.

Total distance: 34km
Time taken: 3:56:06
Average pace per km: 6:56
Calories burned: 1975

Friday, March 13, 2009

Friday is my favourite day!

Friday has always been my rest day although usually I do go to the gym early in the morning to a Body Balance class - great for stretching. However this morning I had the pleasure of my daughter's company instead which seemed like a lovely alternative.
As I collected aforesaid daughter from the airport in the middle of my scheduled 5km track race last night I obviously gave the race a miss and ran earlier in the day instead. In fact it was 12.30pm before I ran my planned tough run and oh boy it was hot. I ran from home past the AIS down to the highway and then back to O'Connor Ridge where there are some trees for shade. The surface is great but the hills are very steep. My session was as follows:

15mins warm-up jog
15mins tempo run
3mins jog
4 x 1min hills (I think the ones I selected were too steep - phew)
warm down run to finish

I found a lovely gently undulating surface for about 3km of my warm-down and it felt great but then I headed for home on the concrete cycle paths, couldn't avoid them unfortunately. It was hot, I was dripping, but with the workout done I could enjoy the rest of the day without rushing back to work - woo hoo!
Total distance: 12km
Fastest km: 5:27
Total time taken: 1hr15mins
Average pace per km: 6:12 (damn hills!)
Calories burned: 708

Later in the day I headed for the CIT to meet with CJ who had produced an exercise program for me designed to assist with upper body strength, abs, back fat etc. It took about an hour to go through everything. I'm hoping for great improvements although with my current training program I will probably only be able to squeeze in two or three weights sessions a week until after the marathon.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Less Than Six Weeks to Canberra Marathon!

Anaerobic Threshold and Race Preparation

Monday - recovery run on Canberra's Birthday
This morning I ran a gentle run from home at 10.30am!
Total distance: 12km
Time taken: 1:15:18
Average pace per km: 6:16
Calories burned: 715

Today I ran twice - something I do very rarely
Run at 8am
Total distance: 5km
Time taken: 31mins
Average pace per km: 6:13
Calories burned: 300

6.15pm Run - Summer Series at Acton Ferry Terminal
Warm up with Thea - 2km

Race total distance: 5km
Time taken: 27:01
Average pace per km: 5:15
Calories burned: 300
Total distance for day: 12km

Wednesday - Today
6.15am - RPM
7am - Abs class
4.30pm - Run from home to and round lake and home again
Total distance: 16.29km
Time taken: 1hr 31mins
Average pace per km: 6:04
Calories burned: 960

Sunday, March 08, 2009

Weston Creek Half Marathon

I have mixed feelings about today's run. I felt decidedly ordinary at the start with my nose running like a leaky tap and my throat dry and sore. Yesterday's short 5km run was not comfortable and I admit I was a bit dubious about running at all feeling the way I did at the start line. However I was glad that I didn't wuss out. Although this was definitely not one of my better results I actually quite enjoyed the run in spite of the hills and the constant cycle paths. There were lots of familiar faces and Mr B was out there with extra supplies of tissues when needed. He ran about 17km off and on although he didn't compete and he just turned up at odd places with tissues! Rachelle was out there running here and there and popped up about 2km from the end as did speedychief who of course had already finished the race and was on his cool down when he found me and encouraged me to put on a bit more of a spurt to make it to the end. The clock had just clicked over the 2 hour mark when I ran through the finish line and no matter how big a finishing spurt I could not have run any faster. My name was accidentally called out as winning my age group and when I corrected the error I was rewarded with a bottle of NZ sauvignon blanc for my honesty - yay!!
Later I spent FOUR hours at Tilleys enjoying the company of CJ, Ewen, Lulu, Steve, Carol, Bruce (not to forget Bella the border collie) and Rachelle - such a great way to spend a sunny Sunday.
Distance: 21.1km
Official Time taken: 2hrs and some seconds (tbc)
Average pace per km: 5:40
Calories burned: 1255

Friday, March 06, 2009

A Good Day

This morning I went to Body Balance - I love that class, compulsory stretching, amazing abs work and so lovely when we have total relaxation for ten minutes at the end. Last night I was CJ's guinea pig at CIT for a fitness assessment. It was good fun but these abs of mine defnitely need more work!
After the gym this morning I went for a run which incorporated fartlek training. My legs did not want to cooperate and the fact that I'm still coughing madly doesn't help much. Here's hoping I don't disgrace myself at the half marathon on Sunday. However, I had a good day today. After my shower I went to lunch with my ex-admin staff as an opportunity to say thank you and farewell. It was so lovely being able to do that and we had such a nice time. Management covered the cost and had sent a very nice gift for me so it was all good.
Total distance today: 11.13km

Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Ups and Downs!

Since Sunday I've had a dose of flu and a bad cold - not very pleasant but I think I'm starting to feel better. I didn't run at all on Sunday and Monday - just no energy and totally blah. However I did go out for a gentle run yesterday and managed a slow 8.45km. This morning I returned to RPM and later I went to track which was held today as tomorrow there's a big footy match being held at the AIS and the track is closed. I was a bit apprehensive about racing as I'm not 100% yet but I decided to at least give the spiral a go. I started from Group 33 and finished in 8th place so was happy enough with that.

Distance: 5lap spiral - 2.47km
Time taken: 12:35
Average pace per km: 5:07

Next Marg and I decided to enter the 2km walking race which is always fun. We don't do the proper race walk, we just power walk a fast as we can. We still have a handicap but are not judged. It really is fun and I was very happy to come in second place - what a fluke!
After this Marg and I jogged outside the track for 3km just gently but as I was coughing a lot and feeling decidedly ordinary gave the 3km event a miss and instead headed home. But it's a start and I'm hoping I'll be ok for the half on Sunday, just taking it fairly easy this week.
Total distance today including warm-up: 8km