Monday, June 30, 2014


A warm day and ran the Thursday route solo to give me 14.8kms in 57:15 (3:52's). Felt pretty good and the legs certainly felt fresh.

I have my coach coming over from England in a couple of weeks time to host a lactate threshold testing day. That should be fun and I dare say we'll be having a beer or 2 afterwards...

Sunday, June 29, 2014

Another 60km week

Another day of no running. Lots of travel back to Galway and that was about it. Didn't even bump into any famous people at the airport...

That's 60.8kms for the week. The fun has ended and time to knuckle back down into a few decent weeks of training.

Saturday, June 28, 2014

Belgian Wedding

Got up and had a wobble around the village. A total of 8kms in around 36 minutes feeling very ordinary. A lovely part of the world mind, very clean, and lovely scenery. Back to the B&B to get changed, before a quick visit to the pub, then onto the church, then the reception. I managed to pace myself a bit better today and stayed on the beers nearer the 5% mark.

Here's a photo of me playing a rather strange game of billiards. I didn't have a clue about the rules...

Friday, June 27, 2014

More travel

Off to Belgium today for a wedding. I was hoping to squeeze a run in but we got stuck in traffic in Brussels which put pay to that. Instead it was a family meal and getting familiar with the Belgian Beers. Started on Duvel (abv 8.5%) and finished up on the Trappistes (abv 9.25%). That stuff is rocket fuel and I was in a world of hurt the next day...

Oh yeah, bumped into this guy at Dublin Airport (one of my fave players). Had a quick chat and got my photo taken. He was travelling to Oz for the Australian Open:

Thursday, June 26, 2014

Bad then good

Early morning run with Fintan and Owen. I was struggling big time - no energy which I put down to a lack of carbs. Glad to finish in 1:01:03 for the 14.8kms (4:07's).

My Dad is over at the moment so we went out for a game of darts in the evening. I won 15-13. Happy with that as I haven't played in an age.

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

10km threshold #2

Same run as yesterday. This time I ran the 10km in 33:10. Bloody hell these sessions are tough at the moment with the weather being warm. No chance of me getting up past 10km at the moment - just don't have the mojo...all up 14.0kms.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

10km threshold #1

2km up, 10km threshold, 2km down. Sweating buckets and completed the 10km in 33:03.

Monday, June 23, 2014

Progressive recovery

Back on the treadmill. Started off with a slow couple of kms and by the time I hit 2km I was running at 15.0kms/hour pace. Then each minute I upped the pace by 0.1kms/hour. I didn't get into my recovery zone (HR 131) until I was up to 16.7kms/hour (3:36/km pace). Then the rest of the run at the pace (just over 10 minutes). All up 10.0kms in 38:10. The rest from running must have done me good.

Sunday, June 22, 2014


Travel with a hangover. Got home around 5pm and went straight out for a meal with the family. No running again.

That's 66.5kms for the week...

Saturday, June 21, 2014


Met with some of the old Uni gang at the cricket. First beer at 11am and kept drinking right through until 2am doing my best Peter Barlow impersonation. No running as you'd expect so the 147 day running streak came to an end. Nice to catch up with some guys I haven't seen in almost 20 years. Where does the time go?

Friday, June 20, 2014

10km threshold

Pushed it today - was feeling good and the heart rate was slow to rise and I managed to run the entire 10km without having to lower the pace to keep inside the correct heart rate zone. I was right at the top of the zone for the final few kms and managed to run the 10km in 32:45. Not bad for a training run. All up 14.0kms with the up and down.

Travel to Dublin in the evening for my flight to the UK in the morning.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

England out

Early morning run with Fintan. The pace was a little slower than the norm and knocked out the 14.8kms in 1:00:56 (4:07's). Nice run mind and perfect conditions. Knee behaving really well the last couple of days (kiss of death).

I went into town in the evening to watch England play (read not play). Total bobbins. Hopefully Italy slip up tomorrow and put us out of our misery.

Wednesday, June 18, 2014

Spain out

Threshold run. 2km up, 10km threshold in 34:06, 2km down. Took it easy at the lower end of my training zone as it was bloody hot. Even with the fan on full blast I will still sweating buckets. I'll get one more of these runs in on Friday and that will be that.

Watched Spain get knocked out of the world cup whilst having a few beers. Need to click out of holiday mode...

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Back home

Day of travel back to Galway. Lovely weather on arrival - same heat as in Portugal. I did a 9.5km recovery run (topless) in 36:26 (3:50's) so not too shabby.

Monday, June 16, 2014

Last Day

Final day of the holiday. Another repeat session - it didn't seem there was any wind today and I ran to the lighthouse about 2 minutes quicker than before (28:54). Then the threshold run on the return leg. Actually there was a bit of a breeze which you don't notice when it's on your back. Still a decent run back in exactly 4 minutes quicker than the outward leg (24:54). Overall 53:48 for 14.2kms (3:47's). The return leg was around 40 seconds slower than yesterday - but in my book it was a better run today as 3:30's into a breeze when it's close to 30 degrees is good going.

A spot of food poisoning in the evening which resulted in me driving the porcelain bus. Not pleasant. I'm blaming the shellfish and definitely not the beer....

Sunday, June 15, 2014


Encouraged by the run yesterday I decided I'd do the same again. This time it was a slightly different route through town to the lighthouse but pushed it all the way home on the return leg. Round numbers out in 31 minutes, home in 24 minutes. So another 7.1km in the threshold zone. All up 14.2kms in 55:42.

The watch recorded a new 5km watch PB as part of the return leg (16:45). That's 3:21 per km so ticking over nicely. Average heart rate was 145 for the final 7.1kms and I think I need to start doing more of the threshold running on the road when  I get back to Ireland.

That's 93.3kms for the week. Damage limitation whilst on holiday to counter the additional intake of food and beer. At least I managed a bit of threshold running the last few days. Hopefully fitness has at least been maintained.

And the run streak continues. I think that's 142 days now. I can't see that continuing next weekend as it's a university reunion in Headingley for the cricket. There are some big hitters in attendance so watch out the Otley Road...

Saturday, June 14, 2014

6km threshold

I decided I needed to try a bit harder with the holiday training so I did the lighthouse run, and pushed the return leg for just under 6km. I felt pretty good. Okay it was all downhill with wind on the back but I did at least get in the threshold zone for the guts of the 6km. Then an easy last 5 minutes back to the apartments. All up 14.4kms in 56:50.

Had a good drink in the evening watching the England game. I thought we played really well and deserved something out of the game. I've no problem losing if we at least play well. I still think they can qualify and it has been a really enjoyable World Cup so far.

Friday, June 13, 2014


Same run as yesterday. I left it a but later to try and run in slightly cooler conditions but it was still bubbling hot. Another 14.4kms in a slower 1:00:52 (ave HR 126). Clearly I wasn't pushing it enough.

No chance of threshold running here. I'd last 5 mins max. Enjoy the easy stuff.

I watched Holland shellack Spain. Drinking beers that came in 200ml bottles. Like drinking out of a thimble. Lots of shuttle runs to the fridge...

Thursday, June 12, 2014


I ran from Sagres to the lighthouse and back which I think is the most south westerly point in Europe. All into the wind and uphill on the way out, but a nice run home even though I was dehydrated by this stage. All up 14.4kms in 59:28 (4:08's). Much better than yesterday and just managed to keep the HR in the recovery zone (ave 131).

A few beers and watched the Brazil game before falling asleep during the second half...

Wednesday, June 11, 2014

Gone to seed

Tried a run here. Managed 10.8km but was blowing all the way. Time 53:00 so just under 5 minute kms. A bit of a reality check. No treadmill here, no track, just lots of sun and Super Bock. The easy running might be a blessing...

Tuesday, June 10, 2014


Managed to squeeze in a recovery run in the morning. All up 11.1kms in 42:08 with average heart rate at 133. Well under 4 minutes per km as is the norm these days.

Off to Portugal in the afternoon with the wifey sans kids. Should be 7 days of fun!

Monday, June 09, 2014


Back into the threshold running. 10km in 33:30. Didn't feel great but had a good sweat. All up 14 clicks with the up/down.

Sunday, June 08, 2014


A recovery run. Halfway round and got proper soaked - the rain was Sydney style. All up 15.4km in under the hour. Pace was around 3:50/km.

That's 86.7km for the week. Any week that contains a PB is a good week in my book!

Saturday, June 07, 2014

Monivea 5km

Fond memories of this race being my first ever win in 2010. Today was my 5th running of the event and I was looking forward to a good hit-out to see how the legs were.

Around 3kms warm-up and then lined up for the start. The course had been modified slightly this year - it was mostly the same route as before but in reverse. They'd also cut-out the loop around the green at the start by adding in another section in the woods.

We started and I hit the lead. I thought I'd give the first km a rattle, hopefully make a break and then keep it nice and steady to the finish. Well that wasn't to be. Through the first km and another guy was still with me. As we hit the forest trail I moved over and let him take up the running. It wasn't someone I recognised so I decided to shadow him and wait for the last section on the road.

The trail is nice and flat but you have to watch your footing and there are a fair few twists and turns. Through the next couple of kms and I could sense that the other guy was working harder than me. That said, I wasn't feeling great myself but I stuck to my plan to attack on the road section.

We hit the road and I stretched out the legs. I felt tired but managed to open up a little gap but it was one of those breaks where you never felt comfortable that you'd done enough. At 4km I was perhaps only 5 seconds in front and I knew the last km was going to be a tough one with a few uphill drags. It sure was a killer run home but I'd saved a little and by the time I could see the finish line I'd done enough and I crossed the line for the win in 15:48.

It turns out the guy in second was over from America and he trains with the Atlanta track club. Just goes to show you never know who's going to pop up at these races. Not the easy win I though it would be and looking back I seemed to be hurting more today than on Tuesday. Happy with the time - my best time here previously was 16:06 so nice to comfortably beat that today. Average heart rate today was 155 with a peak of 162 so I was certainly working out there.

A couple of kms warm-down to give me 10kms for the day. Very enjoyable all round and well done to Tony and all the organisers for a great event.

Friday, June 06, 2014


Just an easy run today in preparation for the Monivea 5km tomorrow. A 9.5km local loop in just under 40 minutes (can't remember the exact time). I'd say around 4:10/km pace.

The World Cup of Darts started today. A World Cup that England have a good chance of winning (they've won it the last 2 years).

A couple of beers in the evening.

Thursday, June 05, 2014


Early morning run with Fintan and Owen. All up 15.0kms on a lovely morning for running. That's 3:58/km pace so a tad quicker than yesterday.

The legs still don't feel great. The plan is to race again on the weekend so no threshold running this week...

Wednesday, June 04, 2014


I ran with Fintan to shake out the legs. I actually felt pretty good until the last couple of kms where the tiredness started to creep in. All up 14.8kms in 59:11 (4:00's).

Snooker in the evening. It was the opposite to brilliant. The running has clicked but the snooker has turned make matters worse the legs got worse as the day progressed. That race must have taken a fair bit out of me.

Tuesday, June 03, 2014

Tuam 5km

Arrived with plenty of time to spare. After picking up my number I ran a few kms warm-up with John who was looking for his first sub 16. Conditions were windy - but it looked like we get the worst of it out of the way at the start of the race with the benefit of the wind coming home. So not too bad.

All the guys were there - and the usual banter at the start line. The horn suddenly sounded and I got a terrible start. That probably wasn't a bad thing though as it gave me a bit of time to settle into my running. There was a group of half a dozen or so at the front, and none of us were prepared to take it on running directly into the wind. At the km marker I checked my watch (3:13) and I wasn't happy with the split so I made a split second decision to drop the hammer. I took off like a scolded cat running flat-out with the benefit of some downhill sections and I immediately broke away. I ran hard up to 2km with a split of 2:49 and then there was the realisation that I still had another 3kms to go...

The third km was good ground but all gradually uphill. It felt tough going and I guess I'd paid for the huge burst in the previous km. At 3km (split 3:13) and feeling a little better I started to lift the pace again as the road flattened out. As we approached the main road there is a very nasty 200m climb up to the 4th km (3:10). From there on it's a lovely run home - downhill or flat. I really attacked the last 500m and crossed the line for the win in 15:23 with a 2:57 last km. New PB!

Some great times out there tonight - congrats must go to John and Owen who both broke 16 for the first time and I knew many people ran their quickest times of the series so well done if you clocked a new PB. I'm delighted with my own performance but I know there is still more to come. It may be time to get on the track to see if I can get close to the magical 15 minute barrier...

Here are a couple of photos  - one just after the start and one of me approaching the finish:

All up 12.5kms with warm-down. A couple of beers to celebrate when I got home as you never know when a PB could be your last!

Monday, June 02, 2014

Not knowing

Easy run today - just my short local loop of 9.5kms in 39:44 (4:11's). Well short of my recovery zone averaging around 125 heart rate. Nice to take it really easy for a change.

Thoughts turn to the race tomorrow. No idea what time I'll run - I'd say I'm in PB shape but the lack of speedwork worries me a little for the shorter distance of 5km. Should be a good crowd with some decent guys at the pointy end which is what you want.

Sunday, June 01, 2014

Curry #2

Another recovery run. I felt great today and it felt like I was running at a quicker pace than yesterday but that wasn't the case. A total of 12.6kms in 49:05 (3:54's). Average heart rate 132.

Followed by a few beers and a home made curry. I could eat curry every day...

A total of 91.8kms. Not my greatest week - struggled with the 2 threshold runs and didn't hit my target for the km reps. The plan is to race the 5km on Tuesday so I guess that will show exactly where I'm at...