Wednesday, April 30, 2014

2 of 4

Another threshold session. Felt the opposite of good right from the off and the heart rate was much higher than Monday. Pace was slower as a result and boy was I glad when the 45 minutes was up (total 12.6kms in 44:52 = 3:34/km). All up 16.6kms with the usual 2 up 2 down.

Snooker in the evening. I was ordinary but still managed to fluff a couple of chances for a 50 break. Robertson on the other hand was superb clocking up his 100th century on the way to a 13-11 win over trump. As far as I'm concerned he's the only player who could stop Ronnie but I still can't see it happening. So the semi-final line-up is Selby vs Robertson and O'Sullivan vs Hawkins.

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

Easy for Ronnie

A recovery run around Claregalway. A total of 11.1kms in 43:39 (3:56's). I wouldn't say that felt comfortable but I managed to get into the right heart rate zone (albeit at the bottom end).

Snooker hotting up. Ronnie shellacked Murphy 13-3 and didn't even look interested. Robertson and Trump shaping up into a close one.

Monday, April 28, 2014

1 of 4

A you know what run. A total of 13.0kms in 44:36 (3:26/km). I had to remove the shirt mid-run which isn't easy when you're clipping along on the treadmill. I must do a before and after weigh in as the sweat loss is incredible. A solid session and the plan is to get 4 of these in this week...

Watched the last session of the Robertson/Allen game. Robertson completely dismantled Allen and is in simply brilliant form running out a 13-7 winner. The only blip was Robertson missing 2 chances for his hundredth hundred of the season. One was a black off the spot which he jawed! And in the very next frame he missed a red along the cushion whilst in the 90's. It's only a matter of time though if he continues to play like this.

Sunday, April 27, 2014


I was considering another threshold run but felt exhausted so time to listen to the body......recovery run instead. A lovely sunny day and felt pretty good once I got going. A total of 12.6kms in 49:10 (3:54's).

Not a bad week but feeling very tired the second half so that was a little disappointing. A total of 100.3kms and probably averaging well under 4 minute clicks so good quality. And 93 running days on the trot. One more week required!

Watched more snooker (I'm addicted). Robertson v Allen. The Aussie is playing really well this season and has now accumulated an incredible 99 century breaks for the season thanks to his tally of 6 so far in the Worlds. To put that into context the previous record was 61 in a year. Only 1 more required and it's nicely poised with Robertson 9-7 up with one session left to play. It should be a great final few frames...

Saturday, April 26, 2014

Take off!

Recovery run. Felt tired from the start not helped by the breezy conditions. Was hoping to lock into sub 4 pace with the benefit of the wind for the first half of the run but that never happened. In a strange way I felt better running into the wind for the run home. All up 14.6kms in 59:34 (4:05's).

I watched all of the final session of the Rocket in the snooker. Simply brilliant stuff. He closed out the match after levelling at 11-11 with 2 centuries. The first one was sublime. One of the best tons I've seen. Fair play to Joe Perry who pushed Ronnie all the way but when it came down to it, Ronnie went into genius mode and everyone was left mesmerised.

A bit of housekeeping - I forgot to give last week's tally in all the excitement of my PB. Well it was 89.7kms, And here are the splits from Labane:

3:10 / 3:14 / 3:19 / 3:13 / 3:34 (16:30) / 3:32 / 3:29 / 3:19 / 3:26 / 3:33 (17:19). Total 33:49

Friday, April 25, 2014

Darts final

Another threshold run. 10kms in 33:40 on the treadmill with no rolling start which probably costs you 10 seconds. All up 14kms with warm-up/down. These sessions aren't getting any easier...

Darts final in the evening. We lost 5-3. I lost my singles game 3-2 (best of 5) after missing one dart at double tops for the win. In the pairs we won and I took out 72 in the deciding leg to make it 4-3 overall but we ended up losing the next game to go down 5-3. A good evening but a late one not getting home until 2am...

Ronnie still in trouble after 2 sessions trailing 9-7...

Thursday, April 24, 2014

Sub 1 hour

Just me and Owen today for the early morning run. We started slow but gradually wound the pace up and by the end we were comfortably running sub 4's. All up 14.8kms in 59:23 (4:01's) and that's the first time ever to go under the hour for this run on a Thursday morning. A glorious day and all done and dusted shortly after 7:30am...

Ronnie looks to be in a but of bother in the snooker trailing 5-3 to Joe Perry after their first session...

Wednesday, April 23, 2014


Treadmill. Felt good for the first 30 minutes, then the heart rate started to really climb. Had to constantly check the speed to keep within the zone and by the time 45 minutes was up I was running at just below 4 minute clicks (which was very welcome I can add). All up 13kms in 45:37 (3:31's). Probably a sign that I haven't fully recovered from the weekend.

Man these sessions are tough. I was absolutely spent at the end and had to wait a good 10 minutes before doing my warm-down. Shorts and top both soaked and a nasty rash with all the sweaty rubbing in the tender regions. Perhaps too much information...

All up 17.0kms with warm-up and down.

Snooker in the evening. It was a frustrating night and all the watching at the Crucible hadn't rubbed off on my own game. The last frame was a good one though - 5 reds, 5 blacks, miss (break of 40); 6 reds, 6 blacks, miss (break of 48). Frame over in 2 visits...

Tuesday, April 22, 2014


A recovery run. I felt great today and was hardly breathing clipping along at a healthy pace. All up 11.1kms in 43:30 (3:55's). The weather was a good bit cooler today so I think that helped.

I've started taking protein the last couple of weeks. It has definitely made a difference - the legs seem to recover better and feel a lot fresher the next day. I'm taking the whey protein which I mix with milk for a nice milkshake. The chocolate flavour is a little on the sweet side but I have a bit of a sweet tooth so all good. Highly recommended.

Monday, April 21, 2014

Labane 10km

Dry and windy conditions today. We'd have the wind on the back for the first 4km, then it would be a tough run for the remainder of the loop. A warm-up of 2.2kms with a few of the lads, and it was time to line up at the start. There was some decent guys around - and John was targeting sub 34 minutes so I wasn't going to have it all my own way.

The race started and I took the lead. I felt great to start with being pushed along by the wind and by the time I hit the first km marker I had opened up a decent lead. From then on I just ran on feel - trying to lock into the threshold pace that I've been accustomed to lately. I was slowing slightly each km marker, but still felt good - that was until we took a 90 degree left turn at around 4km where the wind and hills started to slow things down.

For the next 4 kms it was tough going. I was running 15 seconds per km slower and feeling a good bit worse for it. Constant ups and downs and very little shelter from the breeze. Luckily there was nobody pressing me but it's one of those situations where you don't want to relax too much and risk getting caught.

At 8km it was the straight run home. I was switching from side-to-side on the road to try and find shelter but that was a waste of effort. A nasty bridge to climb over before the last km where I backed off and cruised into town for the win in a time of 33:49 with all the kids chasing me down the finishing chute. Great stuff.

A warm-down of 4kms with John and Gary who completed the top 3 places.

So another nice hit-out at a well organised event. Well done to everyone who helped put this race on.

Here's a photo of me being chased at the finish (courtesy of Sean at AK):

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Jog on

A recovery run. Glorious weather so ran outside and had to get the legs moving to get in the right hear rate zone (133 to 142). The legs didn't feel too bad to start but seemed worse after the run. All up 12.7kms in 51:32 (4:03's).

The plan is to race another 10km again tomorrow. In an ideal world it will be done at threshold pace...

Another photo that shows off the lovely flat course in Kilmovee. Checking my watch to see if the pubs are open yet...

Saturday, April 19, 2014

Kilmovee 10km

About an hours drive to Kilmovee. A glorious sunny day and very still - perhaps too warm but I wasn't complaining. A quick registration/warm-up and soon I was lining up with over 500 other participants. My old sparring partner Roger Barrett was running which was great as I'd have someone to try and hang on to. Lots of other familiar faces also - John Byrne, Timmie Glavey, Paddy O'Toole - to name a few. Great to see all of these guys after a long break for me running in Co Mayo.

After a short delay at the start we were underway. I hit the lead and my plan was to take it out quick and hang on. I was a little surprised that Roger didn't go with me, but I was moving nicely and the km markers seemed to be arriving quicker than anticipated. By the time I had reached 5km in 15:57, I was starting to feel the pinch and Roger had worked his way to the front and I was hanging on. The next couple of kms were really tough - perhaps it was slightly uphill and into the breeze but I was battling away but was determined not to let Roger gap me. Then just before 7km we took a sharp left turn and I suddenly felt much better and started to push the pace.

I started to open up a bit of a lead and I continued to run well up until 9km, but in the back of my mind I knew the last km was tough as there was a nasty climb to tackle. Sure enough with about 600m to go I was reduced to a shuffle. Lots of negative thoughts at this stage but I managed to keep the legs moving and upon reaching the top of the hill I could see the finish and I gave it everything to cross the finish line in 32:20 for the win.

Finally a PB after a couple of years in the wilderness! Okay only by 2 seconds but I'll take it. Lots of positives to take out of this - a good win over Roger who has been in cracking form lately (a sub 32 runner) and it seems like the new training regime is working! I spoke to a fair few people after who found the course and conditions tough but when you have a good race you don't seem to notice these things. Perhaps I have a bit more to come!

A few kms warm-down to give me around 14.0kms for the day. Here are the splits:

3:07 / 3:10 / 3:07 / 3:16 / 3:17 (15:57) / 3:26 / 3:15 / 3:10 / 3:12 / 3:20 (16:23). Total 32:20

In summary, a fantastic day. A real community event with first class organisation. Gerry Duffy was there and described it "as the most friendly race I’ve has been at, a fantastic event, testament to John Roddy’s leadership and the involvement of the whole Kilmovee Community team". Hard to disagree with that!

And finally, here are a few photos to finish with courtesy of This one just after the start:

This one somewhere in the middle:

And this one at the nasty speed bump near the end where I'm grinding away on my axles:

Needless to say a few beers was had in the evening...

Friday, April 18, 2014

Good Friday

A short 6.7km run in 30:12 (4:30's).

Race tomorrow. If the weather looks good I'll be travelling to Kilmovee, Co Mayo for a 10km. I'm hoping I'm in decent nick so will be targeting a big sub 33 run. How much below 33 remains to be seen - hopefully the new training regime will be starting to pay dividends and I'll be well inside the 32:50 I ran on March 1st.

Snooker World Champs start tomorrow. Ronnie all the way.

Thursday, April 17, 2014


Early morning run with Owen, Fintan and Sean. Good conditions and ran at a decent clip covering the 14.8kms in 1:00:13 (4:04's). Sean looks to be in great nick and I'm sure he'll have a super run in Boston on Monday. Also good luck wishes to all of the other Harriers running Boston - namely Gerry, Paul and Larry.

Watched the Premier League darts in the evening. The Power looks to be back to his best brushing aside MVG. I also think that Anderson is the dark horse to win it - I may have said that a few weeks back.

Wednesday, April 16, 2014


Legs sore after the track session and the left knee a little on the tender side. So a recovery run was called for. A total of 12.7kms in 50:15 (3:57's). I resisted the temptation to speed up at the end to get under 50 minutes. Must be going soft.

Snooker in the evening. Potted some lovely balls but couldn't string the breaks together. My best effort was a 42 where I missed the sitter of all sitter blacks whilst dreaming of a 100. Still peeved about it 24 hours later...

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

4 x (400m / 500m / 600m)

Back to the track. I think my last trip to Dangan was Jan 21st so a long time between drinks. Not sure what to expect due to all of the threshold running but all the advice given suggests your top end speed naturally improves as your threshold pace develops.

A warm-up of 3.8km on the roads followed by 3 laps of the track. Good to see some familiar faces and the session didn't look too bad (recovery times were 60 secs, 75 secs and 90 secs). My target was 72 second laps (or better) and I was leading out group 2 so I was always getting a few extra seconds recovery. Here are the times:


Happy with that and well within target. A strong headwind in the finishing straight made for a tricky 100m but apart from that the conditions were good and I enjoyed the session. I suppose the recoveries were a little on the generous side so that may flatter the times...

All up 14.8kms with warm-down. Easy/recovery running now before the weekend.

Monday, April 14, 2014

10km threshold

I felt pretty exhausted today. Pace was a little down and I made sure I was at the lower end of the HR zone. The 10km took me 34:12 so still not bad. All up 14.0kms with the usual 2 up 2 down.

Considering track tomorrow to break things up a bit. See what speed I have and a good sharpener for some racing on the weekend.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Sunday with Fintan

A recovery run. A break from the treadmill and nice to get outside. Very breezy and it seemed like we were copping the wind in every direction. I'd have been pleased with anything sub 4:00's today and was well inside that covering 14.8kms in 57:07 (3:52's).

Great to see Fintan back. Not much time for chat mind as that pace doesn't feel very conversational...

I watched the London Marathon earlier in the day. I thought Mo ran a great debut of 2:08 though he did it the hard way running solo most of the time (strange tactics?). I usually get an urge to dip my toe into marathon training having watched one of these big races but that didn't happen today. Phew.

Watching the Masters now. Looks like Bubba has it in the bag...

Oh yeah, 98.8kms for the week. Three decent threshold runs in there and the average pace well under 4:00/km. If I'd have done the math before today's run I'd have tagged on an extra 1.2kms....

Saturday, April 12, 2014


Almost a carbon copy of yesterday. Today the HR wasn't climbing quite as fast so I managed to find a bit of extra speed/distance. A total of 13.04kms in 45:11 (3:28's). Drenched in sweat at the end.

Knee just about okay. I have to be very careful with the back-to-back sessions and I'll manage the training on how the knee is feeling each day. All up 17.0kms for the day.

Friday, April 11, 2014


Treadmill threshold. Started quick to get me up into the correct HR zone. Then had to spend the rest of the run winding back to the pace to stop the HR topping out. Overall 12.84kms in 45:02 (3:30's).

All up 16.8kms with warm-up and down. I ran today in my Mizuno Inspires - with so much quick running I'd be going through racing flats at a rapid rate so decided to go with a lighter shoe that should still give me decent mileage.

These runs are very tough. More of the same on the cards tomorrow...

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Thursday with Sean

Just myself and Sean today who is putting the finishing touches to his Boston Marathon training. Nice conditions and plenty of chat and soon we had completed 14.8kms in 1:02:52 (4:15's).

Under the new regime that's too slow so today can be classified as a rest day. In the coaches words "you're getting about as much training benefit from that run as a walk to the shops!".

Wednesday, April 09, 2014

Quick 10km

Today I was to get back into the threshold training. I thought 10km in the right zone would be a good start. I ramped up the speed and the heart rate was taking an age to climb. I went through 5km in 16:18 before backing off a little, but still ended up running the 10km in 32:58 - all below the upper heart rate limit of the threshold zone. Not bad going...

All up 14.0kms with the 2.0km warm-up and down. Enjoying the training but the left knee is taking a real hammering with all this quick running. I firmly believe I will either run a big PB or end up in traction...

Tuesday, April 08, 2014

Recovery #2

Again on the treadmill. A total of 11.0kms in 41:42 (3:47's). Pace not too shabby but it was still well within the recovery zone. It's all about the heart rate for this new type of training.

A few beers this evening for my Mum's last night in Galway.

Monday, April 07, 2014

Recovery #1

A recovery run on the treadmill. A total of 10.4kms in 40:02 (3:51's). Legs didn't feel too bad after yesterday. Another easy day tomorrow and then back into the old threshold training...

Sunday, April 06, 2014

Connerama Half

Got up late, had no time for breakfast, just made the last bus out to the start.....time for a coffee and a Kit Kat chunky, a bit of a warm-up and soon we were lining up for the start.

The Kenyan shot to the front, I settled in second, with around 2,000 behind me. I took it handy enough running at the comfortably hard pace, but not flat-out. Plenty of time to enjoy the surroundings, speak to a few fellow competitors in the half and ultra. Conditions were similar to last year - very windy and it felt like we were running into a strong head-wind/cross-wind all the way to Maam Cross. So the speed was slow but the effort level was where it needed to be.

The last climb between 9 and 11 miles was a killer. A few squally showers and very blustery conditions and you were hardly moving. But once at the top I could enjoy the last couple of miles down to the finish crossing the line is 1:18:32 for second place. The Kenyan ran 69 minutes and I think he was targeting 65 minutes so that gives you some idea of the conditions.

All in all still very enjoyable and I think that's the first time my Mum has watched me race. Another great day and I guess I'll be back next year to give it another shot! Well done to everyone who took part and to the organisers. Certainly a very unique event which should be done by all at some point.

All up 23.1kms (a 2.0km warm-up and no warm-down). And that's 91.8kms for the week.

Saturday, April 05, 2014

How not to prepare

A slow run outside in the wet to burn off a few pints of Guinness. A total of 6.9kms in 30:35 (4:26's).

Out in the evening for a meal and more drinking. Another 6 pints to be exact. That should give me plenty of energy for the half tomorrow...

Friday, April 04, 2014

Sub 4's

Same route as yesterday - again at recovery speed. A total of 14.8kms in 57:59 (3:55's). Felt great.

The plan is to run the Connemara Half on Sunday at threshold pace. I don't have any chance of winning as there are some rather good Kenyans running but should still make for a nice hit-out.

Darts semis in the evening. We won 5-2 so through to the final. I played okay and was saved by hitting a lucky 180 in the first leg which got me out of trouble. That gave me the confidence to go on to win 2-0. Roll on the final!

Thursday, April 03, 2014

My easy day

Early morning run with Fintan and Owen. Speed not as quick as required under the new regime but everybody is entitled to one really easy day!

A total of 15.0kms in 1:04:12 (4:17's). Good to see the boys back running!

Wednesday, April 02, 2014

Mum arrives

Back in Ireland and the Mum arrived from Spain. So lots of socialising over the next week or so...

A treadmill recovery run after yesterday's test. A total of 12.5kms in 50:04 (4:00's). My recovery running HR zone is 131 to 142 so I'd say all my runs will be sub 4 minute clicks going forwards. It will be interesting to see how that pans out. Remember this is recovery pace - threshold will be much quicker!

Tuesday, April 01, 2014


A good chat with my new mentor. All aspects of my running were examined - diet (crap), flexibility (crap), weight (too heavy), running (good but can be improved)...

My results from the lactate test itself were very good and showed that I still had a lot of room for improvement. The focus is on strength and conditioning work which a solid bout of threshold running will deliver. The sub 32 10km is definitely achievable and all being well I'll have a crack at that within the next couple of months. All good.

A really enjoyable day and difficult to gauge the total distance ran. I'll say 12kms and that includes the test itself, plus warm-up and down.