Wednesday, May 19, 2010

The Sprint to the Finish

Great Ocean Road Marathon 2010

After a nice pasta dinner in Apollo Bay my mate Wheaty and I headed to our tents at the local caravan park, set our alarms for 5:00 am and hit the sack for a good nights sleep.

I woke up at about 4:45 and could hear Wheaty squirming around in his tent, so I thought what the hell, lets get this show on the road. We had our breakfast under the stars, packed our gear and headed in to town to catch the bus to Lorne.

Our wonderful bus driver put Happy Gilmour on the TV, a perfect choice!

After getting to Lorne we milled around with the other 580 runners until the race finally got under way at 8:00am. Wheaty and I started together but about 50 metres down the road I quickly got carried away with the crowd and started my usual early race dodge and weave act.

I Glided throught he first 10km in 47 minutes feeling fantastic. The first real hill started at the 7km mark and it did not pose any problems, I was joking with runners and spectators as I skirted up and then flew down the other side.

When I hit the halfway mark in Kennett River at about 1:45, or thereabouts I was feeling awesome and starting to fantasise about a sub 3:30 marathon. Fantasies that were soon to be snuffed out as quickly as they had arisen.

Straight after Kennett River the road begins to rise and rise and rise. After a short respite at the top of this peak there is another, shorter but steeper peak to overcome. As I ran down the other side towards the 30km mark I noticed that I no longer had any downhill spring in my legs.

At about 32km Wheaty finally caught up with me. We compared notes about dead quads and cramping hamstrings and then pushed each other with swearing and will power to cross the 42.2 km timer mat in 3:48.

Of course we stopped as soon as we had hit the mat. A fellow runner, who had also stopped, looked across and with a half smile / half grimace said, "and now some salt for the wounds". She was not wrong! We had another 2.8 km to reach the race finish line.

Motivation to run that final leg was very tough to find. After quite a few false starts we finally started to run with about 200m to go to the finish line. Incredibly, we actually started to pick up the pace as we ran through the cheering crowd to finish our first Ultramarathon in 4:13.

For the next marathon I will need to remember to hold back a little early on in the race and if there are hills, treat them with some respect because they will get you. Hmmm, stacks more hill training in future, that'll help to sort things out!

The next race is the Run Melbourne half marathon in July. Sub 90 is the target, bring it on!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Foot coverings

After knocking up about 300 kms in VFF, my last 100 km or so have been in my bright orange Mizuno runners.

The VFF's have been good and I felt as though my feet were getting stronger by wearing them. They also helped big time to implement a new midffot strike running stride. The downside was that over distance they are very hard on the feet, especially around the metatarsal.

As long as my stride is correct I'm not feeling any achilles or PF pain when wearing the Mizunos. In fact my morning pilgramige down the stair case is getting better each day.

Die achilles pain.....I win!!

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

ha ha....after all these years I only just got it :-)

Five to one, baby
One in five
No one here gets out alive, now
You get yours, baby
I'll get mine
Gonna make it, baby
If we try

The old get old
And the young get stronger
May take a week
And it may take longer
They got the guns
But we got the numbers
Gonna win, yeah
We're takin' over
Come on!


Your ballroom days are over, baby
Night is drawing near
Shadows of the evening crawl across the years
Ya walk across the floor with a flower in your hand
Trying to tell me no one understands
Trade in your hours for a handful dimes
Gonna' make it, baby, in our prime

Monday, April 26, 2010

Long Run - the elusive distance

This Sunday's long run was planned out for 30k along the Dandenong Creek to Jells Park and back. The same track that I ran last Sunday but this time with a bunch of splits worked out to major intersections at a 5:30 pace.

The first 12k went to plan then as I headed up to the 20k mark at around two hours, give or take, I started to cramp up in the back of my legs. I pushed through the next 5km with some very reduced patches with the last 5km being pretty much a disaster with just as much walking (hobbling) as there was running, well shuffling more like it. I finished in 3:30 hours with a not very respectable 7:14 pace overall.

Hmmm, only a couple of weeks to go and I need to find another 15km. This is going to be very interesting. Next Sunday is the Puffing Billy race which I plan to run out to Emerald and then at the end of the race turn around and run back to Belgrave. The hills in this run should be good training for GOR and if I feel ok at the end I will head up to Grants Picnic ground and do some trails.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Training - 4 weeks to GOR

Only 4 weeks to go!

At lunch time on Monday I went for a 10k run that I was telling myself was a "recovery run" after Sunday's long run. Yeah well, not really I was a bit tried and sore afterwards and later that night. By Tuesday night I was still a bit tight in the calves and thighs but went along to MMA training anway.

We had a traditional night which was good for a change, just and hour and a half of Goju style kata. Fairly tired when i got home so I had a good dinner, a wash and hit the sack.

Belted out a 10k run at lunch time today at a 4:54 pace. Not too bad for a training run and I've got to say that I'm feeling great now. Think I'll go out to the shed tonight and do some more kata training.

For the rest of the week it will be 2 hrs of MMA on Thursday night, 10km Saturday morning followed by some kata practice, then a 36 km run on Sunday morning. The plan for next Sunday is to do that long run at 5:00 or faster pace.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Hanging Rock 10k

It was a lovely sunny morning at Hanging Rock with about 500 people lining up at the 10k start line on the horse racing track. Although planning to run in a pair of Vibram Sprints I was unable to tie the timing chip on with the small ties that were supplied so I ended up running in my Mizuno Wave Ronins.

The course itself had two short stretches of sealed road with the rest consisting of open paddock, the grass horse track and a dirt trail around the base of the rock. A very enjoyable course with a nice mixture of surfaces, it sure beat the standard 100% road courses in Melbourne.

At the start I managed to get a great spot right up on the start line, in fact there was a noticable lack of pushing to front. This led to a cruisy start with no josteling, dodging and weaving for the first two kms :)

I hit the 5 km mark at 21 minutes and was feeling great for a sub 45 and at about that point I hooked up with this guy who was travelling at a nice steady pace. The plan was to run with him to the end and the group of 15 or so runners behind us seemed to have the same plan.

Another 1500 metres on and my plan fell apart when I started getting some gastric action happening and had to slow down for fear of blowing chunder. Once I got going again I was about 50m behind that pack and had no hope of catching them especially after another gagging episode another 800m down the road. I managed to pick up my pace again for the last km or so and finished with a respectable 45:41, which was about 4 minutes slower than what was possible due to the untimely gagging.

There was a little tightness in the hammies on Saturday afternoon but that was pretty much gone by Sunday morning. After a little sleep in I put the VFF Sprints on and headed off for a cruisy 29k run. All went well untill about 2:30 into the run. By that stage I got it into my mind that I wanted food and my water had run out with nowhere nearby to refill. Over the next 50 minutes or so I struggled along and had to keep motivating myself to continue. Something I haven't had to do for some time. Next week I'll take some money with my and/or food and more fluid!

Over all I felt pretty good Monday morning with slightly sore thighs and a little tenderness in my left heel. Went for a nice 10k recovery run at lunch time and all feels exceedingly well.

There is no more pain in my Plantar fascii and the achilles pain is just about gone, certainly it is manageable. My calves and feet feel so much stronger since I started wearing Vibrams - unbelievable!