Friday, December 31, 2010
Tuesday, December 28, 2010
Monday, December 20, 2010
With 2000+ people running I was lucky to be standing on the front line just behind my wife, so when the gun went off boy did she have to run!!! She left me standing and it took we almost 500m to catch her. With this being my come back race I wasn't going for a time for myself, but was, if my body let me, going to run with Dawn and see if she could sneak under 44min.
Now I was running with Mr. Garmin and he was telling that we were running fast enough going through the 1st km in 4:11. Now that was 1km one as per Mr. Garmin, but the race marker was a few seconds away. I wasn't worried as a board or 2 are always a couple of meters out. We were running fast enough to break 44, but as the km past it seemed to Mr Garmin that everyone km was a couple of meters to long... Mr. Garmin had us at 5km in 23:30, but the 5km board only past at 22:01. I wasn't worried, even if the race markings were to continue as the first 5 had, as we now had the little wind behind us...
Dawn lost it on the 8th km and lost a little time something we couldn't afford to do with on time in the bag. I was now a couple of meters ahead, and when Mr. Garmin told me it was 10km in 43:09, but I still had 184m to go!!! I finished in 43:55 with Dawn 10sec back just missing 44.
All that is left to race / run is the Boxing Day Manor House race. (I'm going to need that after all the Christmas food I'm planing on eating.)
Now let me leave you with something Daley Thompson use to say: I always train twice on Christmas Day and New Year's Day as I know my competitors won't be training...
Friday, December 17, 2010
A quick trip to Pretoria does nothing for my running, but a day off in my come-back was just fine.
Wednesday saw me head out with Will for a 6km run. After a very slow start I was running at 4:30/km on the flat... all I can say is it's a good thing Will turned to run home, because I hadn't planned on running at that pace, and I'm sure my calf wouldn't have taken kindly to much more of that.
I'll run a bit on the weekend and then take it from there, but by the new year I hope to be running well enough to line up for the Bay to Bay 30km...
Next week I'll have to have a look at the year that was and it wasn't a good year by any means.
Wednesday, December 8, 2010
I had big things planned for this week; like running twice a day, or even cycling in the morning, BUT I’m still not running… So what is going on in my life. Monday saw me leave work half an hour early and head straight to the physio. Have you ever had crucifixions on your calf? Well after half an hour of trying to crawl off th
e table he stopped. Why did he stop? Well he wanted to stick javelins in my calf!!! I should have had my camera with me, I was pinned to the table with about 10 of these things stuck in my leg.
Tuesday's program was 12 x 500m with 60sec rest. I wasn't going to be running, but as coach I was going to be standing on the side of the track taking times. So I cycled up to the club and sent the boys off on a warm-up. I then popped back on the bike and did a couple of laps of the track cycling. With the boys back and ready to run I left the bike and walked to the 500m mark. I set them off and started my walk to the finish line. Now I'm not one for standing around, so I did a couple of lunges on my walk back. OK I did 50m of lunges. Now they did 12 x 500m so you've guessed it... I could hardly walk on Wednesday and I can still fe
el it today. My legs were so sore!!! I guess if I'm not running this Tuesday I'll do it all again…
My Star Athlete had decided to run the Avbob 15km are on Saturday, so I was up early to give my support and take a couple of pictures. It's a flat race out in Tableview, but boy does the wind blow!!!
This is one of the pictures I took.
ps my Star Athlete is also my wife…
Thursday, December 2, 2010
Friday, November 26, 2010
Sunday, November 21, 2010
Tuesday, November 16, 2010
So the training is done and now all I have to do is get to the start line on time. For Winelands that is easier said than done, as the start time is 05h30 and with the start out in Stellenbosch some 40min drive away I have an early morning on race day.
So how are things looking for marathon number 58, and the fist for 2010? I could tell you that I feel great and am ready to take on the world, but is that really true? The diary doesn't lie, so we had better have a look...
The year started off well and by June I was looking at running a couple of good times for the year, but an injury knocked me back. July was a write-off and as things were coming right in August, but it wasn't till September that my body let me get training again...
With not much of a base I started training in all earnest on the 4th of October with a week of 90.5km followed by a 95.5km week. After all that training I needed to rest so I took 2 days off and ran a windy 10km race in 35:39. With a long mountain run on the weekend I call it a rest week and logged only 61km.
Now with 4 weeks to race day I had to up the miles and effort. I managed 2 weeks of 100km before I cut a little of the distance only running 70km last week. So we have 4 weeks of what could be enough running, and plenty of sessions and a couple of long runs (2 x 30km 1 x 27km a hard 25km and 3 half's at sub 80 pace).
I've run a hard 10km and a hard half both of which convert to a 2h44 marathon. I don't want a 2h45 I would like a 2h39:59, so that is what I'm aiming at.
The plan is go out at a little faster than race pace 3:40's for the 1st 5k before the hill... I hope that doesn't do me in, but I'm going to need those seconds come the last couple of km. I've run this race 7 times twice helping friends to dip under 3hours and twice in 2h39. So I've looked at the splits and looked at the splits, and looked at the splits. I've converted the 2h59's to 2h39's and looked at those splits.
So what is the long and short of what my log book is telling me... 21.1km bang on time, than down the R44 to Somerset West I think I'll lose a couple of seconds, but will still be on time. Over the bridge and back. I think the road is going to get long, and that last hill at 36km will take to much out of me and I will end up short, maybe running that 2h44 that the conversion table all are telling me.
Come Saturday all that goes out the window and it's then up to the man on the road, the weather, and the competition.
Friday, November 12, 2010
So I thought I should have a look at the web sight and see what we are letting ourselves in for... Well looking at the profile it doesn't really look that bad, it only has 3 hills. The 1st from the start till about 32km then we have a short down and a short but steep up followed by about 5km of down hill before the last 3km climb. Should be a piece of cake!!!
I think I'm going to have to become a hill running machine!!!
Monday, November 8, 2010
With the first 5km been mostly flat it wasn't hard work and I was happy with the time of 18:07. The next 5km is anything but flat as we cross the railway line and climb up the Rhodes Memorial through UCT. I didn't push the hills, and still found myself pulling ahead, but this is to be expected as this is home territory and we run up those hills all the time. Turning at 10km 38:46 (20:39) it was time to see if I could hold it together and maybe even pick up the pace... I did put in a 3:17 km down the hill, but the idea was to be able to run the flat km at sub 3:48 marathon pace. I reached 15km in 56:41 (17:55) and with the down hills over it was running that was needed to get me home. I was alone at this stage but I could hear the feet of the "enemy" behind me, so I had to push on. Pushing as hard as I could I was still run down and past by a Nedbank athlete. I hadn't slowed, but he was flying and my wings were cut so I just had to fight on to the end. I worked hard to the end to finish under 80 (79:29), but for that effort I would have like to have been 90sec faster...
My wife was still on the road, so still needing a couple of km for the week I headed out on the route to watch her come in. She was running like a star and leading her category!!!
one more week of hard work before I can afford to take to foot of the peddle and taper. Training for a marathon is hard work and I really nice the trails on the mountain, but road is road and I need a bit for Winelands marathon.
Monday, November 1, 2010
The single tracks on this mountain are very rocky and one has to watch were your feet land. I'm not saying I would have closed the gap on Derrick if I had been able to see, but I could have been a few seconds quicker. In 2h10:32 I reached the finish, 2 mins behind the winner, but happy with the solid run and ready for the half on Sunday!!!
Yes I was up early again the next day as my wife and I headed out to Durbanville for their half marathon. With a 07h30 start it was going to be hot out there and the fact that this out and back course was not flat but undulating! it was going to be hard to keep to my pace. I wasn't going to race till the last couple of km, at least that is what I told myself... The lead guys soon got away and I found myself running with Damian Will. We worked nicely together slowly dropping a 40+ who was trying to sit with us. I was in 3rd (40+) and I could see 1 and 2 ahead of me. I had done well till the turn, but then I had to make a move. I could feel Damian had spend his last penny and was running on empty. I set out to catch the 2nd placed 40+ on the first hill. I want to tell you that I was running like a man possessed and running him down was no trouble, but he was taking strain and I was really just holding my pace. 5km 18:28 10km 37:04 15km 56:47 I did have to work a bit harder in the last 5km to keep it together and Johnny (the 1st 40+) was slowing. I didn't catch him, but closed the gap to 10 sec. I was happy with the run, 79:25 was a good time after yesterdays 25km trail race, and if I had to keep it up for a couple more km, I guess I could have.
A marathon still seems like a long way, but I think the first 30km should go as to plan. What about the next twelve? Well I hope these last two weeks of training get me home...
Monday, October 25, 2010
Well we did beat Eddies time by all of 10 minutes, but we were "SHATTERED MOUNTAIN MEN" and that was only the start of the 3 week block!!!
Now I'm going to let you into a secret on how to recover really quickly... Go home have a quick swim, mow the learn and trim the beard. You will not only look a whole lot better, but by the time you sit down for lunch looking over the crystal clear pool at the freshly cut grass you will feel a whole lot better too.
There was no easing into this week as we had a hill session on Monday and Tuesday we were up at 05h00 for a morning run.
Now for Wednesday I had decided to run the 10km race in Pinelands. I wasn't racing it like last week, I just wanted a tempo run a little quicker than marathon pace. Just under 37min, one of my athletes wanted to have a crack at a sub 37, so he was going to run with me.
Well if you know Cape Town you know the 'Cape Doctor', and he was out making house calls... Yes the 1st km was a little quick, but the wind was from behind, but turning off one of the main roads in Pinelands into the leafy suburbs I wasn't going to be taking the wind so I surged to a group ahead of us to tucked out of the wind. Yes I ran a little faster than I had planned, but I didn't feel any worse for it. I ended up with a 36:05 while Malcolm ran a 37:09 yes he would have maybe made it if I had run next to him the whole way, but some things he's got to do on his own and this was also my training.
So what answer did I get from the wind? Maybe in good conditions I could hold that pace for a half (+_ 78min) and maybe we are now on target for a 2h45 marathon. Yes the last 10 are still a bit unknown, but I'm going for it I've got a couple of weeks left to see if I can pull it out the old bag.
Thursday, October 21, 2010
Like every other day I left the office at 16h00 and headed home, Dawn was walking the dogs, so when she came home there wasn't much to do but get changed and head out. We were on the road at 17h00 leaving with plenty of time for the 18h30 start. Well the traffic was bad and the 15km trip took over an hour!!! (and that was even after we had covered the 1st 10km in 20min, should have left the car and ran to the start...)
The top 40+ guys weren't there so I was not only lining for a solid run, but a shot at prise money. 1st 40+ was out of the question as Vladimir Kotov had taken off his 50s and was lining up as a 40...
The race started in a hanger out of the wind and with the sound of the gun still echoing around us we took off out the open door and turn with the wind behind us. I struggled to stay with that early pace, but I had to keep in the mix as we were turning into the wind and I didn't want to be left in no-mans land (like my friend Charles). I was sitting in the 2nd group, Kotov was in the 1st group and 1 other 40+ was with me, in fact I was using him to block the wind. I didn't stay behind him for long as he was small and I wanted to be behind the biggest guy in the group. The other 40+ was working hard fighting the wind. Turning down the main runway and having the wind at our backs was great, and for the 3rd km I ran a 3:23. As we turned into the wind again I saw the other 40+ had dropped of our pace. We went through 5km in 17:31 and I was thinking about breaking 35min. That wasn't going to happen as we turned into the wind again at the start of the 2nd lap. I even took the pace a bit to try and speed things up, but was unable to keep the pace. Turning with the wind I thought that km to 8 would be quick, but taxing down the runway I could only reach 3:30 for the km and that isn't enough for take off or to make up the lost time to break 35. I was left to fight the wind on my own for the last 2km and lost more time finishing with 35:39.
I'm happy with the effet and the time, my 11th pace overall was on important, but coming 2nd 40+ was nice as I picked up a couple of bucks...
Monday, October 18, 2010
Anyway I now had a starting point for Winelands and the training had to start. I would like to run a sub 2h40, but that is still a long way off. I'm taking it 1 week at a time and with 3 weeks down it's now time to rest and take stock of how things are going:
Week one was just building back up and trying to get things working well, so after an easy recovery run on the Monday I started with 3 x 1000m on the the Tuesday. Wednesday was 55min on the mountain while Thursday was reduced to just a 5km warm up... Just wanting a bit of time on the legs I headed for the mountain on both days of the weekend. The week was over and with only 66.5km logged I was a little short on the kays, but I was still running and ready for the new week.
The next 2 weeks I was over 90km with 6 x 1000m and plenty of extra km on the track at marathon pace (3:50). I try and run a km or 2 before training or as a warm down to get the body use to running at sub 4 and to notch up those valuable kays. Wait for it I even was up at 05h00 for a couple of morning runs. Last weeks long run was 3h15 on the mountain then this Sunday I took to the road and knocked of 30 in 2h15.
I know I can't keep this up without breaking down, so it's rest week time... Now taking stock I can tell you that if the race was next Saturday I would aim at 2h50. I might end up wanting in the last couple of kays, but that is what marathon running is all about. So the question is can I get there, I just don't know. I will give it my all and taking it one week at a time I'll give it a crack.
Monday, October 11, 2010
2 sessions 6 x 1000m and some hills,
a long run of 30km (picture take at the top of Platterklip 2 hours into the long run.)
and a couple of km in my easy runs at race pace.
With my milage for the week at 90km I know if I can keep this up I will be in sub 2h50 shape. But I must take it one week at a time, for now we are aiming at sub 3. Next week we can call it again.
Sunday, October 3, 2010
Back in January '10 an ex athlete of mine, down from Jo'burg, popped into the club for a run. I had seen him briefly the day before at the 30km race. Why am I telling you this? Well it was the first time I had really seen a pair of VIBRAM FIVE FINGERS, and as funny as they looked I wanted a pair. It wasn't till my old coach sent an email telling us that he had got a pair and was never going to take them off that I looked into how I could lay my hands (feet) on a pair. To cut a long story short my brother in the USA sent them to me.
The wait almost killed me, my wife had never seen me so excited, but she didn't see me on our wedding day till she walked down the aisle. They couldn't have come at a better time as I was only just starting to run again after an injury and a big race. So like a boy with a new toy I almost went for a second run that evening, but wearing them around the house would have to do. No I didn't go to work in them but once at the club I was transformed into a gorilla, and with my big black feet I was ready to take on the world. (Just a point here, I do run a bit of track bare foot.) So into the forest we went….. Okay I was running slowly and only did a short loop, but boy was it fun.
Now they aren't only a running shoe they are a way for us old farts to run around barefoot like we did as kids.
It was now a long weekend so we packed the car and headed off to Stanford and Hermanus for a few days. Friday saw us walking around the village and going beer, wine and cheese tasting. That evening, after spending the whole day in my new Five Fingers I could tell that they are good for your feet as my feet were tired from having worked all day, Five Fingers have no cushioning or heel raise to allow your feet to rest.
After a couple more runs from the club this last week I was ready to take on the mountain. Come Saturday morning I headed up through the Green Belts to Cecilia Forest and the Contour path. A right turn took me to Nursery Ravine so up I went taking the single track at the top across to the Overseers hut and the concrete road. I headed down turning off at the single track back to Cecilia Forest. 1h 58:03 I was home and I had even been running sub 4min/km at the end.
So what can I tell you about running with gorilla feet…..
If you haven't done any barefoot running TAKE IT SLOW (and short) or your calves won't take kindly to them.
On grass they're great, especially for us "softies" who can't run barefoot anymore.
Those first 2 points are a bit obvious, so let me go on to tell you that as funny as they look, they are really comfortable and not too many people look at you funny if you just wear them out casually.
Now onto the important stuff, you can run anywhere in them. I haven't run much on tar but I've done a couple of km.
On the flat I find I am running a little softer on my feet. I won't say I'm running any slower or faster, just a little different.
Then on the uphills things get easier and faster as normal shoes are a lot heavier.
Now since I had come down the bridle path from the dams on my long run I can tell you that I was slow. (But I think I will get faster as I get stronger and more used to the Five Fingers.)
Now let me leave the road and tell you about the trails. Every trail is different and I have found myself watching the ground ahead a little more carefully. Maybe this is a good thing
On the firm sand/clay they are amazing but if you are running fast and relaxed along a path and a single stone sticks its head up you are going to know about it (that is if you' stand on it) but no worries.
On tackling the long down hill from the block house the other day I felt the hard gravel road, maybe if I was fitter and running hard down there it would be better. You don't want to be using your heels to break as you go down. (I could feel the road under my feet)
Through the style and the rocky single track takes you down to the car park. Now on terrain like this I think the more you run it the better your gorilla feet will do. I had to take this quite slowly.
I found that those endless forest stairs were causing me a little problem on the downs. You see if you try and land your whole foot on the step you could end up catching your heel on the upper step, so I always like my toes striking just over the edge of the step. Now you can feel that through the thin rubber sole but its okay for a couple of steps but for 100+ its just not pleasant.
So where to from here? Do I race in them? Not at the moment but maybe in the months to come.
Lastly I want to say if you enjoyed being barefoot as a kid and thought that is when you ran best, what are you waiting for….. go and get a pair.
Monday, September 20, 2010
After the rolling hills of the face of Table Mountain I saw Bruce and the tri-athlete reach the end of leg 1 ahead of me. The other two were long gone. Leg 2 would take me along the contour path to the Nek. Both Bruce and the tri-athlete had disappeared – Bruce had sped off and the tri-athlete had stopped (I didn’t know his fate). The contour path wasn’t empty as I headed to the Nek I was catching the slower racing teams. It was nice to be catching and not being caught. I won’t say I was flying but I was still moving forwards. The thought of running over the aloes on my way through Kirstenbosch never even entered my mind. At the top I passed a ‘little’ girl from a relay team and then there in front of me was the skinny black guy….he wasn’t a trail runner and I passed him at Skeleton Gorge as the trail got technical.
At this stage I should stop and tell you; that as good a job as the tape on my calf was doing, it was only holding my calf together so the rest of my body was getting ready to fall apart (okay maybe that’s not quite right) but my quads were working overtime without pay and you all know what happens when you force someone to work overtime without pay….
I finished leg 2 about 3 minutes off the pace and after an equipment check I was on my way again. The 3rd leg is more than just the 3rd leg, this is where the race is won or lost. Bruce made his move and so did I, Bruce went hunting for a second win and I fell to pieces!!! This stage is divided up into different sections: 1st one took me to the style over the fence, didn’t lose anytime till the steep climb before the fence. This wasn’t a good sign, but I was only worried about my calf and it was holding out. 2nd section starts with a climb through a forest before a left takes you along a contour to the turn at Hout Bay Corner my split time of 19,41 was under 20 mins so this was still on track and I was still in 3rd place. The 3rd section takes you up, up and more up to the fence and the left hand turn to the long road to Kasteels. This is where I knew my game was over, my Chicken was cooked, Elvis had left the building. On the first up I was slow the steps all seemed bigger than I remembered and my pack was getting heavier and heavier with every step I took. (Normally my pack gets lighter as I drink the water, but today I think some-one was busy filling it with lead.) I wasn’t hanging around, but my steps were slow and I could feel the pack of youngsters chasing me down. I made it to the ridge and tried to run the few meters to the next climb… Ha Ha Ha
My arms were still strong so climbing was easy, but the traverse around to Llandudno Corner was slow and as I started the final pitch I could see the pack closing in for the kill!!! I tell you these youngsters showed me no respected (mental note, get fit and kick their butts next race) as I was left standing on the side of the mountain… Then wait for it they still had the cheek to ask me if they were heading the right way. I should have let them head on straight at the fence, instead of turning them left on the long flat road to Kasteels. 32:23, that is slow I was 26:26 a couple of weeks ago on a slow training run.
OK, the long flat road to Kasteels is nether flat or a road; it’s an undulating single track that is almost only used by trail runners. This is the 4th section and should take 45min, but as Leo had now past me I know it would take me closer to an hour. The back table is great to be running on as it climbs over half the Apostles. At Grootkop I looked back and saw a young lady and a guy catching me, I want to say: “so I upped to pace and left them in my dust” but I could do none of that. I did try to hold them at bay by weaving through the fynbos and breakneck speed, but I had no speed and it was only me that was broken…
We did play a bit of cat and mouse as I would get away on the very technical stuff and they would catch me when I had to walk. They were quite a bit ahead come the “cliff” again I should have kept quiet, but I ordered them over the top and off the edge. All that said I still past both of them. My lead was short lived as I was walking again up the next hill. This was the last I saw of them as they powered up the hill and disappeared over the top. I broke an hour to Kasteels, but that wasn’t all that was broken.
My Quads were shattered and now I had to deal with the 5th section, down to the Pipe Track. Each step down was like birth contractions, but “Pain is Temporary, Glory is for Ever” so with the help of gravity I made it down. (16:42 not to slow, only 2 or 3 min off the pace) With only 4km of Pipe Track to go I was almost finished. It’s a good thing the Pipe Track is as flat as it is, because on the one climb I just stopped and looked at the steps that lay ahead of me wondering how I was going to make it up.
It had been a hard day on the Mountain, but I had finished in a respectable time of 4h18 7th finisher and 2nd vet.
Friday, September 10, 2010
77.6 77.4 77.9 77.3
So things were going well, that was till about 170m into the 5th when my calf decided that 4 and a half was enough.
I might be the Coach with years of experience and all, but if Mr Calf says 4 and a half is enough, then well it's time to call it a day... I jogged through to the finish in 85sec.
The next day been Friday I took the day of training and with a day of rest I was ready for Saturday. Saturday you might ask, well I was heading up my mountain again... In fact I was taking Eddie for a little run through Orange Kloof and around to Llandudno corner, up over the Apostles to Kasteels and back to the car over the dam wall. Mr Calf put up with this run, but let me know that is was not very happy by not letting me walk for the rest of the day!!!
It was the most perfect day to be out, and I wish I had taken my camera, so I could have taken a couple of pictures of them running on the mountain. This picture of St James will have to do I took it with my phone...
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
I parked the car at Constantia Nek just before 09h00, yes it's late, but I had to buy wine before I ran so I couldn't make it any earlier.
Back on the 3rd of July this year I had run this route with a couple of friends; Will, Jayde and Ake, on that day we got to Maclear's Beacon in a few seconds over an hour, so today I was aiming at breaking an hour. I thought it would be easy running on my own, but I wasn't taking the weather into account!
Most runs I break into sections, so the first section or leg of this run took me up the single tracks over the bridge past the Overseer's hut and the tap to the turn off to the single track. I thought I was ahead of time, but I was really a minute behind, My splits to Nursery and Skeleton were also a bit slow I hadn't picked it up, I still thought I had time to get to Maclear's in under an hour. Pushing on through the wind, rain and waterfalls (very impressive) I was 3min and 45 sec over the hour, I took the split and turned to Platterklip Without any protection from the wind and rain this was the toughest part of the run. I did try and keep to the rocks, but that was not always possible so I spent half the time in water. My new socks had now been wet for over an hour and they were holding out...
From Platterklip I turned left and headed through the valley of the red gods. This was going to be very slow as there are many wooden walk-ways and in the wind and rain they are very slippery and I didn't want to go bush diving!!! Only had a couple of undulations left and I was at Kasteels. No I didn't turn down I turned to the Dams and headed back to the car at the Nek.
So how had the socks done? Well once back on the concrete road and running like a Machine I can tell you that the socks had held up well after almost 2 hours of running and most of it in the wet... they weren't falling down or crunching up at the toes so I guess I'll be wearing them again when I'm on the mountain splashing through the rain. I still think they might be a bit thick and hence warm for summer, but only time will tell.
PS was also wearing a pair last night (don't know if all 3 pairs are the same) but I had a different shoe on, and this shoe hold water a little bit more than the Rockridge, and I felt that the socks got a bit heavy once I had run through a river...
Monday, August 23, 2010
We were running the same course as league 4, and I think back then I picked up a 3rd place. Now as you stand there on the start line you alway have a little look around to see who is there... Well things have changed since League 4... Graham is now 40 and is favourite for gold, Shaun has also turned 40 a couple of weeks ago and with a 1:51 800m at the begining of the year he should take silver. (maybe he'll go out to hard and come back to us the following pack, we can but hope!)
I had to go out with 3rd in mind, but as we rounded the 2nd corner Isaac came flying past and then John and some guy from Defence who I don't really know. I stayed with the 2 of them into the wind down the long back straight, but then lost them. With 2km down I was going nicely and was sort of stuck in no-mans land. I would like to say that is were I stayed for the next 6km, but 2 more guys caught me and again I could only hold on to them for the long back straight into the wind. I ran the last 4.5km on my own with the 1st 50 year old chasing me. I was pleased to keep him at bay as he had beaten me in League 2 a couple of moths ago... My time of 28:06 was 28sec slower than before and only 33 sec off 4th place and a bronse medal (Isaac, who finished 3rd, is from Boland).
now it's all eyes on TMC
Tuesday, August 10, 2010
Back in 1997, Dawn and I planned our first big holiday together. What started out as a little trip to the USA to stay with friends and run their local marathon turned into something out of the “Amazing Race.”
Amsterdam, New York, Boston, East Lyme (where I ran my first international marathon), Houston, Texas – College Station (to visit my sister), Bermuda (ran the local T.T., a cross-country and a 10km road race). Back to Amsterdam, via New York, took a train to the south of France (Belarga) and back to Amsterdam, London for a week before heading back to Amsterdam to run their marathon and head home. All this in just 6 weeks….
I now have 8 overseas marathons and we don’t head over without the chance of lining up for another one. London, Paris, New York, Boston, Berlin just don’t excite me. The last one I did was in Macau (Far East) with only 500 runners. So what next you might ask? Well 2011 is still a long way off and anything can happen but we have a few plans. Dawn has started running in the mornings with a lady from Prague, well need I say more. Out come the Distance Runners magazines and yes Prague has a marathon in May. Now wait for it, my best friend lives just outside Salzburg and they also have their marathon in May, just one week later. So I was thinking about racing Prague and jogging Salzburg with Richard. Sounds like the makings of an epic holiday. Forget about the running, how can one go wrong visiting Prague and Salzburg. Ok Prague is expensive and the Salzburg marathon is boring and not well organized, or so I’m told. So keeping our options open we kept looking. Scratching through old brochures Dawn came across something that has thrown a spanner in the works. Switzerland, the land of chocolate, cheese and snowcapped mountains… She had found the brochure for the Zermat Marathon in the Alps. We love Switzerland and I’ve already run a couple of marathons in the Alps and would love to run another.
Monday, August 2, 2010
After a 2 week layoff for a hamstring injury I was back running again, and joined Dawn for the 10km race in Pinelands. At the entry tables they were handing out back copies of RW. I was lucky to lay my hands on 5 different months from Dec '09 to June '10. I was keen to see if they had any new articles. Well to my utter surprise not one of the old articles were there. Dec '09's cover boasted articles like: "Shape of Your Life 21 easy ways to get slim & strong", "Get More Flexible 3 easy moves", "Beat stress", "The Heat Factor", "Drop 2 Kilos (or 5 ... or 25)", and that was just Dec '09. The other months weren't any better; "Lose 4kg", "Buy a New Outfit", "Better breakfast", "The Mommy Problem". So it looks like RW has lost it's few articles from the 80's and has found a couple of 'Shape', 'Cosmo', 'Menshealth', and 'GQ' articles to use instead.
I'm not saying it's a bad magazine it's just not RW it's Jogger's World!!! But then that might be the way to go as all the big races are about the back runner (shouldn't use runner here) who requires 3hours+ to finish a half...
Tuesday, July 27, 2010
Sunday morning Dawn went for a run and I lay in bed, but only for an extra 10 min. I then got up and took the dogs to the field for a walk, and decided to run a bit to test my leg. 1km later I called it enough as I could feel the hamstring. Peanut had stuck with me the whole way, while Shandy had taken short cuts across the field. With the dogs walked and Dawn still running I picked up the rope and started jumping. This time it was 5min without stopping another 600 jumps.
Monday I popped up to the club and once I had sent the kids off training I took out my rope and started jumping 5min, 660 jumps. Then I walked across the field to tackle the pull up bar. I think I've put on weight... as I struggled to pull myself up. Once back at the club house I jumped again, another 5 min, 670 jumps. I then tried a couple of push ups before the last 5 mins of skipping 670 jumps.
With 15min and 2000 jumps behind me I called it a day, let us see if I can keep my fitness up with the old skipping rope.
Monday, July 19, 2010
This is my first year as a Vet 40+ so I had planned on taking on the club colours and seeing if I could get full standers in all distances. As a senior I didn't really have a chance, but as a Vet it is do-able. A couple of weeks ago I went out to Eesterrivier to run the 15km race. Aiming at 52min I went out and ran 51:38, so this Sunday I was aiming at running a 10km in sub 34min. This was there for the taking, well if you look at the training and the time for the 15km I was in shape to run in the 33's.
Tuesday I did a 1000m session on the track and with times of 3:18 3:16 3:13 3:09 and was feeling good. Wednesday I had wanted to run a little shorter than normal, but because of a dog!!! we ended up running about 1km further than I had planned. That shouldn't have caused any problems, but on the way back to the club the boys picked up the pace to about 4min/km (shouldn't be a problem for me) but as they pulled away on the Main rd I had to let them go as my left hamstring was feeling a bit tight.
I did a bit of home treatment and Thursday I only race 1 x 500m and with another days rest I was feeling OK come Saturday morning. Dawn and I took the dogs for a 3km jog in the green belt and I felt good so Saturday afternoon I headed out to Koeberg for the 5th league Cross Country.
I might well have lead the race over the 1st 400m but I wasn't running hard or fast. with the fast 35's and 40's flying by I had settled into a pace than seemed OK with my delicate body. After crossing the start finish line in 15;36 for the 1st 4km I was happy... for only another 100m!
Then, did a snake bit me, was I short in the hamstring, but that was the end of my race. Yes I could have stopped and turned back the 100 or so meters, but CC is a team sport and if you can you run all the leagues so I chose to hobble round and finish. I was 7 minutes slower for the 2nd 4 km.
My leg was so sore I was worried it wouldn't work when changing gears driving home and I would find myself driving home in 2nd... That didn't happen, but I'm now sitting at the office hoping to get a physio appointment.
As for my 10km I was on the side of the road shouting for Dawn who manage to run her time of sub 45min. This coming weekend I had planned on racing and even winning (if things went to plan) Hout Bay Challange Saturday morning. running the CC that afternoon and then for good measure racing the Trail race on Sunday... Well if Grant can't fix me and fast I will have to sit a couple of those races out.
Tuesday, July 6, 2010
Monday, July 5, 2010
Wednesday, June 30, 2010
The heavy mist made for great running conditions; no wind and cool not freezing. I can't say I took off like a bullet, because I was 3 lines back and the start was slow, but I was fast enough to be on pace at the 1km mark (3:24), didn't want to run any faster. Had to work hard for the first half of the race going through 5km in 17:19 (on pace and on my own). Just before the turn around I caught 3 Juniors and 1 other Vet. At the turning Chris told me that I was still behind the leading lady, and if I didn't want to be beaten I would have to pick up the pace... It was good running in a group and we were closing the gap. We hit 10km in 34:20 and we working nicely, then one of the juniors decided it was time to surge breaking up our group as the others chased I couldn't up a gear and chase as I was already running flat out! I was still catching Tanith Maxwel and Johnny (the Vet) as they were now running together. Then with 2km to go the road seemed to get a slippery (like Diesel had been split on it) and I just couldn't keep my sub 3:30 rhythm and the gap open again. Come the last km I didn't have anything left and could just hold my pace to the tape. My time of 51:38 was the fastest I've run in a number of years. I was 33rd over all and 5th Vet so out of the money, need to choose my races better if I want to win some money!!!
I run back for Dawn who was also after Club colours she was running nicely and was easiely 71min finishing with a time of 68:01 (pitty about the 01!).
Next road race will be a 10km to see what I'm made of!!!
Thursday, June 17, 2010
The shoes had held up well after 3 hours of the roughest trails I could throw at them, now on tired legs I had 20min of concrete road to run. Let me just say this: I’m not going to be lining up for a road marathon in then any day soon. Something I have done in my STREAKS!
In closing, I have this to say: for real trail put on the ROCKRIDGE you won’t be sorry I’m not.
Friday, June 11, 2010
There are flags hanging all over the place and even some of the buildings has been transformed into soccer mad supporters!
So I guess Cape Town and the rest of South Africa is ready for this month of madness. I'm heading out now to have a look at the stadium before going home to watch the opening ceremony and Bafana take on Mexico.
GO BAFANA GO
Tuesday, June 8, 2010
In years gone by I thought I was strong on the hills and loved running on the mountain, so it was only natural that I fell in love with this race. Back then I was hungry to do well, win, break an hour, and yes I have been lucky enough to do all of that, but those days are as good as over. That said I still train hard and hope for the best!!!
At the start this year I was first out of the blocks and started opening up a lead. This was short lived as a guy from Jo'burg joined me at the front after the first turn about 2km into the race. This was good for me as it kept me honest and I had to work to stay with him I wasn't going to be beaten up my mountain. With one turn left to the bridge I thought I had him as I was pulling ahead, I hoped he would falter and start walking... But no he pulled back and joined me for the steep section to the bridge. The race now flattens and I felt we really picked up the pace I wasn't worried about winning I just wanted a good time. I had a look at my watch at the tap, and then started scheming about how I could take the King of the Mountain. On the last steep bit he slowed, I think because of the mist he thought the climb was starting all over again. He had no clue, I guess he didn't even know there was a prise to the top. I bolted and set off like a rabbit scared sprinting like Ben Johnson (yes a man on drugs). He was never far off but I went over the line first and then I slowed with the idea of letting him take the wind for a bit, but he had also slowed. Again i thought I had him so I upped my game and pushed for the dam, but no sooner had I started to pull ahead he decided it was time to close the gap. It was turning into a nice race and I was really enjoying to games we were playing. I was the using every game in the book to stay ahead and he just kept fighting to get back in the picture.
I think the top dam was leaking as the road was under water, again I took my chances and went for it hoping that he would tackle it like a fairy... again my lead didn't last long. I had one more chance to break him, the single track to the dam wall. This was going to be fun, was I able to take him to pieces in the mist on the wet rocks...? Almost, I heard him slip in the first couple of steps. I think this is were he realised that he had a race on his hands so he wasted no time in catching me on the dam wall. I want to say he was here to win and had taken it easy till now and now he had a race on his hands. We climbed up onto the road and started to run back, he was now uping the front pushing the pace, but noticed that I couldn't keep up so he backed off to keep the games up!!! It's all ways nice to be in front running past the back markers and having them all cheering for you. I sped past the marshals at the King and started heading down... He stopped and I hoping he was a spend case, but all he was doing was stopping for was sherry!!! He was playing with me and had caught me by the time we past the tap. I was running for 2nd... with about 2 km to go he left me for the last time and finished about 30 seconds ahead. My time of 65:44 was the slowest time I've every raced that race, I think I'm getting old, or did Saturdays Trail race take to much out of me?
Thursday, June 3, 2010
Tuesday, June 1, 2010
Why you might ask, well that is the very question I am asking, so let us just see what happens. I would like to get the time to write weekly, or even more than that.
So what will I be writing, not much, as I don't really have anything to say... That said I might let you know about my plans for the weekend, or what happened on the last weekend. I might just talk running, then again I might feel like talking about the trip to work, the traffic or the weather. You will just have to wait and see.