It’s Been Too Long

Inspired by another blogger’s fashionable return in 2011, 2P over at http://twopennysblog.blogspot.com/, It must be about time I added to the City-Bay race report from 2009. Woah that is a long time ago.

So what has been going on since then? Well personally, my attempt at a second Yurrebilla Trail 56km Ultra in September of 2009 was put on hold due to the early arrival of my son, to now be known as V. So as you can see my priorities changed to caring for my family and running has taken a back seat for a while. I did manage to squeeze in the Black Hill Challenge in November of 2009 with my brother, which I will post about later  and I also finished off the Corporate Cup series of 2009.
2010 became a very busy year in my life with work, a baby/toddler and being race director for a marathon. Our two bedroom apartment was closing in very quickly around us, so 2010 also included sale, purchase (well actually it was agree to purchase and then sale) and moving into a new property with plenty of back-yard for the family to run around in. Despite that I aslo managed a few runs here and there with the main events being the City-Bay and Boral Blue Lake Fun Run, both pushing V in a pram. All of these events I will write about shortly. Also in 2010 I invested in (or more like inherited) a bike and have been using that to commute to work alot (except in winter because I value my extremities a little too much) as it is more practical and time efficient then running everyday. Plus now that I have moved further into the foothills there is a nice little incline to get the heart pumping on the way home so that I don’t feel as much like I am taking the easy free-wheeling way out.

So what of 2011? Well son number two is expected in a months time (he shall be known from this time forth as N) so who knows if I will find time to do another entry before 2012. Perhaps I will branch out into non-running related posts as well, I am still pondering that…it is a new year after all.

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Race Report – City to Bay 2009 – 12km

Race City to Bay 20-09-2009

City2Bay20090920_01 This year I was going to go all out for a sub sixty 12km. Months of solid marathon training and solid hour long runs at least 3 times a week. I gave myself the best chance by lining up for the start near the head of the non 50 minute cage plebs and eventually we were away through the timing archway. There was no real need to dodge over to the eastern carriageway up King William Street and I made good time to South Terrace before starting the downhill roll to the bay. The weather was relatively kind, warm, sunny, but there was a slight sea breeze which had a nice cooling factor.

City2Bay20090920_05 I trended along nicely for the first 5k running slightly ahead of schedule, but as things started to warm up my pace started to drift out and after running through the 6k start I stated to lose focus. The time I had up my sleeve I was quickly losing. I hadn’t seen anyone I knew since the start and I was struggling big time to lock on to any pace setters and as the time got away from me, so did the confidence. I had to give myself a kick up the arse at the 3km to go mark and managed an unofficial 10km PB through the 2km to go mark. With Glenelg now insight and a sub sixty run almost out of reach I tried to lift over the last two kilometres, but sprinting down Jetty Road is both tough and dangerous as the road narrows, you have tram tracks to deal with and people start darting everywhere.

Final time was 1hr58seconds, not a sub 60 time and also not a PB. I felt like I still had plenty left shortly after that final dash, leaving a bit of a hollow regret. I guess for next time I should actually start doing some speed training of some sort, getting my body used to rockin’ along at my desired pace because I know the fitness is there.

Race City to Bay 20-09-2009, Pace

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Corporate Cup 2009 – Run 4 – 7.0km

Race Corporate Cup (Torrens) 5-08-2009

I only scored  31 (out of 40) points for last runs improvement, so this week I set Gary to 36 minute pace (1 minute improvement) and set off to keep him in sight. There was no marathon the Sunday before this time, but I did go for my first bike ride in…well more than 5 years…on Sunday and found quite a few muscles in my legs that apparently aren’t used to run with.

Apart from this general soreness, which I tried to six with an active recovery 10k session yesterday morning, I put in a faster than normal first kilometer warm-up as I new I was getting close to my pace limit on this run. Surprisingly when that first kilometer was over and I glanced down at Gary, I was 30m ahead of him.

The weather was surprisingly warm for 7am in the morning at this time of year (20°C I’d hazard a guess) and I set the cruise control over the ups and downs around Frome Rd. My cruise was a little too slow this time and Gary had caught up by the turn around, but with a little boost off the turn around and again belting down under Frome Road, I was back out to a 40m lead.

I had to concentrate to stay on pace for the remainder of the run with a few rises and sharp turns and it felt like I was running at about 85-90% capacity, but I made it. Official time 35min58secs.

The next run is the Wednesday after Yurrebilla Trail 56km Ultra, so I think I might use that as a recovery run, however Run 6 I will be going for 100% effort. Will that equate to a sub 35minute time? Only time will tell, but I think I may need more than Gary to hold the right pace…I will need a real pacer.

Race Corporate Cup (Torrens) 16-09-2009, Pace

Race

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

2006 Time

24:36

24:30

23:01

DNS

25:43

22:30

22:29

Pace

5:41

5:40

5:19

-

5:52

5:10

5:10

2007 Time

22:46

21:43

20:50

20:30

21:59

DNS

22:53

Pace

5:17

5:03

4:51

4:46

5:07

-

5:19

2008 Time

24:18

22:56

22:30

22:59

DNS

22:51

24:39

Pace

5:23

5:06

5:00

5:07

-

5:05

5:59
2009 Time

38:15

37:49

37:00 35:58      

Pace

5:28

5:21

5:17 5:08      

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Corporate Cup 2009 – Run 3 – 7.0km

Race Corporate Cup (Torrens) 5-08-2009

I obtained maximum points (40) for last week’s run, so I was out for another steady improvement this morning to keep the points flowing. Following the marathon on Sunday, it took my legs 4 kilometres to eventually warm up on my regular Tuesday morning 11k run so I was conscious that it was going to take a little extra effort to run my goal time of 37 minutes for run 3 and was going to be extra hard to judge pace from perceived effort.

To help (and no, of course I don’t consider it cheating) I decided to enlist the services of Garmy’s “Virtual Training Partner” (let’s call him Gary). I set the distance to 7 km and the time to 37 minutes and set off. Wow! the legs were feeling surprisingly fresh, not springy but fresh. I ignored Garmy for the first kilometre as I settled into the run and warmed up a little and then glanced down. Not bad, only 16m behind. One of my team mates overtook me then and I drafted off him for a little while to increase my pace a little and then found that I was 25m ahead of Gary.

Carefully I set the autopilot and went into cruise control. Running down the ramp under Frome Rd my lead over Gary stretched out to 40m, but back up to the uni footbridge it settled back down to 30m. As I ran over the weir to start the home stretch, I switched the Garmin view to elapsed time and then began the yoyo running style of – “I’m going too fast, better slow down”…”Oh no I am not going to make it! SPRINT!”…”Ok, there is the finish line, I am going to make it, slow down”. After all that I recorded a time of 37 minutes flat. Perfect.

Next time I will try not to run a marathon before hand.

Race Corporate Cup (Torrens) 02-09-2009, Pace

Race

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

2006 Time

24:36

24:30

23:01

DNS

25:43

22:30

22:29

Pace

5:41

5:40

5:19

-

5:52

5:10

5:10

2007 Time

22:46

21:43

20:50

20:30

21:59

DNS

22:53

Pace

5:17

5:03

4:51

4:46

5:07

-

5:19

2008 Time

24:18

22:56

22:30

22:59

DNS

22:51

24:39

Pace

5:23

5:06

5:00

5:07

-

5:05

5:59
2009 Time

38:15

37:49

37:00        

Pace

5:28

5:21

5:17        

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Race Report – Adelaide Marathon 2009 – 42.2km

Race Adelaide Marathon 30-08-2009 street

My second attempt at the Adelaide Marathon, or any marathon for that matter. The first was back in 2007 and I think I am a much different runner now…and a wiser one. The 2007 marathon was an – out too fast, crawl home on your knees affair to be forgotten, well not forgotten, learned from.

The goal for this year was not to have a repeat performance, aiming for about 4hr15mins or 6 min/k pace.

A decent crowd (read close to 300) started the marathon at Santos Stadium with half a lap of the tartan track and then a full loop around the outside of the stadium before heading in the general direction of Glenelg along the old railway line. I settled into a smooth rhythm and seemed to find myself 20 m off the back of a rough group of 8 or 9 other runners zeroed in on 6 min/k pace. It stayed like that all the way to Glenelg North, but as we dog legged around to do a lap of the lake I started moving through the group. I don’t think I increased my pace at all, they all just appeared to slow as we got passed 15k  and I ended up on the foreshore out in front.

On the coast the wind was gusting from the West, off the sea, which was swollen and lapping at the rocks at a very high tide under a dull grey sky. I really enjoyed the wildness of the foreshore this year, especially as the wind was not blowing in my face and instead buffeted me from the side. I was still on pace and ran through halfway in 2hr8mins, 5 minutes slower than 2007, and 2 minutes slower than my ideal pace, but hey, I was still feeling fresh in the legs.

Crossing over the Torrens and heading toward Grange, I was met head on with the mid pack of the marathon and half marathon. I lost a bit of concentration here, as I was saying hi to every runner I knew (which is quite a lot now) and getting some high fives…the pace increased a little as I sped up to look strong for the runners returning from Grange, puffing out the chest and putting on a stupid grin. Luckily it was only a kilometer before the outward course diverted to the city side of the dune, but I had made up some of the time I had lost to be back on 6min/k pace.

As usual, this section dragged on, with the only entertainment being joking with and encouraging the runners I was reeling in and overtaking and greeting all the wonderful marshals. All the while I was straining my eyes to see if the next street sign said Terminus Street or if the cones continued passed the next round-a-bout. So it was with great relief that I eventually rounded terminus street and climbed back up over the now concrete and bitumen dune to the beach and started the journey back to Santos Stadium.

Halfway back to the Torrens the rain started, it was only light, and was rather refreshing, even if it was whipping in off the sea. The rain didn’t last long and I was still making slow and steady progress through the field but starting to fade a touch. To my relief, I spotted George and Jane in the distance as I started down the Torrens giving me someone I knew to chase. That provided stimulus for at least a couple of kilometers as I zeroed in but after catching them I ran out of steam. There was no stopping me this time but the pace slipped a little more.

After a brief bathroom break, I seemed to find new determination to see this thing out and set about counting down the kilometres to go. I was quite surprised at how out of breath I was, given how slow the pace was, when I walked through the last water station and tried to have a drink of water. Running the last stretch through Thebarton, passing all the struggling runners, now walking, walk/running or slow shuffling their way back to Santos Stadium was great for the confidence. I felt their pain, only two years ago I was there, but today I was running the right race strategy and I was going to make it to the finish in one piece.

Then I finally turned onto Henley Beach Road and sputtered toward the home stretch. My fuel tank was empty and I was faced with the fiercest urge to take a non-drink station walk break. Luckily, once I had staggered across James Congdon drive the temptation passed because I could taste the finish (or was that the salt ecrusted on my face?). Running on empty now I willed myself to the finish line, once again puffing out the chest and trying to appear strong and in control as I ran around the track finishing in 4hr18mins  to the cheers of fellow runners and spectators.

Finally a solid run.

Race Adelaide Marathon 30-08-2009, Pace

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Corporate Cup 2009 – Run 2 – 7.0km

Race Corporate Cup (Torrens) 5-08-2009

After the timing malfunction last week, I knew to get close to maximum points for run 2, all I had to do was run the same time for a 60 second improvement. I arrived at 6:30am and got straight into it after jogging a little from the carpark. Obviously the early morning start was a little too much for some Life Be In It staff as the first two signs directing people on different routes over bridges were wrong causing havock to some runners who were obviously still drowsy. No problem for us 7km runners as we just keep running till the end.

I wasn’t trying to push the pace and wasn’t interested in looking at my watch either, I just dawdled along at what ever pace I felt like. It was all too easy.

Boy did I get a shock when, with 1km to go I finally looked at my watch and realised…Ooops…I have 5 minutes to get to the end to run the same time as last week. Time to Boogie. The legs were a little slow to respond, but after some ducking and weaving across the weir they brought me home in a 4:45 split to stop the clock without any dramas this week at 37min49sec.

My goal for post marathon runs is to get down to 35mins, but it is a testing little course, so it will take a gut busting run to get there.

Race Corporate Cup (Torrens) 19-08-2009, Pace

Race

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

2006 Time

24:36

24:30

23:01

DNS

25:43

22:30

22:29

Pace

5:41

5:40

5:19

-

5:52

5:10

5:10

2007 Time

22:46

21:43

20:50

20:30

21:59

DNS

22:53

Pace

5:17

5:03

4:51

4:46

5:07

-

5:19

2008 Time

24:18

22:56

22:30

22:59

DNS

22:51

24:39

Pace

5:23

5:06

5:00

5:07

-

5:05

5:59
2009 Time

38:15

37:49

         

Pace

5:28

5:21

         

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Corporate Cup 2009 – Run 1 – 7km

Race Corporate Cup (Torrens) 5-08-2009 Another year down, which means another Corporate Cup series. This year my place of employment has entered three teams including a full team of Mega Cuppers (7km). As the chief organiser of the teams I couldn’t very well wimp out and do the 4.5km again, so I am in a Mega Cup Team. It took quite a while to make up my mind on which distance to do and it was only pride that led me to the 7km, as I would have like to have had an indication of my level of fitness compared to other years where I completed in the 4.5km class.

For this first up baseline run, I was aiming in my head for 40 minutes…that would give me a good 5 minutes to slowly knock off down to, what I see as my goal time of 35 minutes. With this goal in mind and the tendency to run a little faster when there are other people around, I tried to take the spring out of my legs by running 37km on Sunday and 12km relatively hard yesterday. It seemed to work.

Another change this year was from lunch time running to 6:30am running (my preferred time). The route itself is quite an annoying one with about half a dozen short sharp rises and tight turn-a-rounds (due to track maintenance on the Zoo section), but I felt like I gave a pretty even effort over the entire 7km.  My legs definitely didn’t have any spring in them, but rather moved on muscle memory, propelling me around the Torrens with a solid amount of effort. Every time my concentration started to slip, the legs would take over and slowly increase the speed. I had to quickly remind myself to just take it easy and not push too hard, shoulders back, breathe deeply and relax.

I crossed the finish line in 38:15 according to Garmy, but after staring at the finishing time LCD display for a while I realised my time wasn’t coming up, so I had to wander back to the finish and scan my RFID tag for an official time of 39:XX. Now that is something to work with.

Race Corporate Cup (Torrens) 5-08-2009, Pace

Race

1

2

3

4

5

6

7

2006 Time

24:36

24:30

23:01

DNS

25:43

22:30

22:29

Pace

5:41

5:40

5:19

-

5:52

5:10

5:10

2007 Time

22:46

21:43

20:50

20:30

21:59

DNS

22:53

Pace

5:17

5:03

4:51

4:46

5:07

-

5:19

2008 Time

24:18

22:56

22:30

22:59

DNS

22:51

24:39

Pace

5:23

5:06

5:00

5:07

-

5:05

5:59
2009 Time

38:15

           

Pace

5:28

           

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