I blame Tom Highnam......... but more on that later.
The week post City to Surf was all about recovery. That race might only be 14kms but we must respect the effect it has on your whole body. Everyone wants to run fast, so they usually wear racing flats and as such the steep downs can do a lot of impact damage whilst the uphills take care of the already sore hammies. So recovering from this event is similar to that after a half marathon - even 25km trail event.
I'll race through it:
Mon 15th Aug: 8km slow
Tue 16th: 10km probably even slower
Wed 17th: AM: 14km PM: 6km both still easy pace but legs gradually waking up again.
Thur 18th: AM: 5km PM: 9km incl a half Monna which still highlighted some sore spots.
Fri 20th: 19th 8km coogee coastal run
Sat 21st: 35km long run with the NOTB guys from Manly / Narra lake and back. Ran reasonably easy most of the way averaging approx. 4:28-30 for the first 25km before what is usually a faster 10km finish off the lake through Cromer and Dee Why and back to Manly. I tried to chase Tom and Craig Mc and was slowly closing in when they decided to turn back and pick me up. Found out they were only doing a 5km tempo. I was keen to finish so I kept pushing and at times struggled to dip under 4min kms. But finished strong in an average of 4:22 overall (approx. 39mins for the last 10km). Good to get another strong one under the belt for Melb.
Sun 22nd: 5km slow and sluggish.
So where to next. Melbourne Marathon and that's it. The question I have been asking myself is whether I am prepared to give the training a shake to try and push for a PB (2:29:44). My training back then (2001) was 120km per week but I was younger. Now although I am stronger and more resilient, I'm also a little lazier than I was. Training is about convenience as much as hard work and it is actually getting harder to nail key tough sessions when I do them by myself.
So in needing something to grab onto for Melbourne I decided to have a crack at higher weekly mileage.
Back to Tom Highnam. If he had failed at Gold Coast in the 10km or in the City to Surf perhaps, I may have convinced myself that it was okay to just cruise along and accept the natural decline in speed at my ripe old age of 42. But nooooooo, Tom wasn't content on letting me think that was he??
Instead he decided to just eclipse his 10km PB and beat my road PB (by just a sec) to run 31:35 at the Gold Coast. And then back it up with a smashing 45:30 at the City to Surf which again smashed his own and my PB.
So the fighter in me has ignited. Sickness now aside, cold weather easing, I'm ready and as such have just laid down my first 100mile / 160km week in well over 10yrs. Obviously it remains to be seen how this will affect me but as I lie here on the couch on Sunday evening, I'm feeling quite good and ready for my morning run tomorrow.
Mon 22nd Aug: AM: 17km at 5min pace PM: 10km at 4:20's (27km)
Tue 23rd AM: 5km coogee coast PM: HuRTs 14 x 3mins. This was okay but I couldn't go faster than 3:20's throughout. Got through it for only the 2nd time ever. 18km (23km)
Wed 24th AM: 20km - Maroubra / CP in the rain. Ugly but it only got uglier during the day.
PM: 8km in a moment of dry weather. (28km)
Thur 25th : AM: 5km coogee coast PM: HuRTs session Monna Fartlek. Met JFen, Scotty, Hamish and Jerome for a really tough intense Monna from Barangaroo to the OS passenger terminal, back to B/roo and then back out again towards the OS terminal. Scotty and I launched and we went head to head for the whole 20mins swapping leads in the efforts with me pushing the floats just a tad faster perhaps to keep with the design of the session. We went through 5km in 16min even and ended the 20mins with 6.3km which is an average of 3:12 for the 20mins. Good confidence booster this one. Total 17km with longer cool down (22km)
Fri 26th: AM: 12km easy - 4:30's. Felt quite sluggish and sore from yesterday but good to have just one run today.
Sat 27th: AM: 37km long run. I had stayed o/night with my mate Errol nearby so it was an easy jog start down to the pool to meet the Manly lads for the out and back to Shelley beach before the 6:15am starting time for the Narrabeen 29km loop. Macca was in fine form and looking fresh all day. Robin seemingly cruising as usual, Tom looking like he could have used a few more hours of sleep and Barts who came out of a 2 week retirement post C2S to resurrect his running career. Also added into the mix was Scotty, Craig McCredie, Brucey Lambert who is also training for Melb and in great form and then the solo female warrior, Elle Goldrick who is a machine - no more needed! 36 big ones for her - boom!
The pace early was ok. Approx 4:30 down to 4:25's before the fast finish marker where Macca, Craig & Robin took off. Hats off. That was me a few weeks ago but not today. I was gonski. Stuck with Tom, Barts and Scotty for as long as I could whilst Bruce spent 4-5km 20metres behind us telling us to go ahead. Eventually those other 3 did and I was stuck between them and Bruce and not feeling great in the legs. Energy wise, all good. Charlene's Bliss ball recipe (made by my darling wife Greta) helped alongside the gels but alas the monna fartlek from Thursday was there and I could only drag my sorry arse along. I had wanted to do 38km, desperately wanted to finish at 36km and so settled on 37km (running 500m with Bruce before returning to Errol's and an excited Jaden).
PM: This counts ok! 2km from Dad's at Woy Woy in my gear incl Garmin, sunnies, the works, down to BWS to buy a bottle of wine and back. (39km)
Sun 28th: Awoke at Dad's feeling great. My little lad was snuggling up to me, I had gone to bed at 8pm with him and simply stayed there so was well rested, and well I had no long run to do. Between me and my 160km goal was 9 little kms. Easy as. Well the problem was getting Jaden to release me from his clingy mood for 30 odd minutes.
Enter the iPad of course. So I bolted and simply kept that pace throughout. Nothing major planned, simply the pace I left Jaden out the front gate. Suddenly I was at the 4.5km turn around in 4min average and well actually feeling rather good. I'm not sure if it's the L-Gutamine that Char has me taking post runs or the extra sleep but I returned well and finished the 9km in 3:58 average. Given how I finished yesterday and the week I had had, I was very pleased. (9km)
160km for the week.
Looks a lot. Not to some perhaps reading this but for me it is. The jump from 130km (normal big week) felt considerably more than 30kms sounds but I'm not broken and I'm pumped to try and replicate it whilst also allowing for the Coastal Classic 30km next Sat. Not a major race for me but I don't want it to hurt too much so I think Thursday will be a double run without session.
Meanwhile Greta had a leave pass over the weekend with Maya and Rachel in Nelson Bay and the girls managed to take out the first 3 places in the Fingal Bay park run. Well done girls.
And a huge run by online Rejoover Matt Hutton whom I have been coaching for 3mths now and who won today's Lake Macquarie Half marathon (his home turf) in a PB 75:37. The best part was that we had decided not to do a full taper keeping Melb Marathon in mind so the legs were not as fresh as they could have been. Well done Mutton. Have to get you into a Rejoov singlet next time.
Thanks for reading guys. I really do enjoy posting as much as I do training and competing so please feel free to reach out for a chat anytime. Happy to help.
Finally, we are holding a training camp up at the Entrance over the last weekend of November. This weekend also coincides with the Central Coast half marathon / 10km so there's a choice for Sunday morning. Check it out at http://rejoovrunners.com.au/upcoming-retreats/
If this is not for you and if you have never ventured into Australia's unbelievable Red Centre, then look past the Entrance to our Alice Springs, Kings Canyon, Uluru camp next Easter. This 4 night extravaganza of sights, tastes and fitness is not to be missed. Message Greta or me for more details.