Sunday, March 29, 2015

Sick week

Didn't feel right as of Monday. Gradually deteriorated throughout the week and by Friday I was in full rest mode. Did a return run on Sunday just for sanity's sake. Here's the summary:

Mon - Claregalway 11.1km 43:16 (legs heavy)

Tue - Claregalway 11.1km 42:00

Wed - 2km up, 8km threshold 25:53, 2km down

Thu - Claregalway 9.5km 39:05

Fri/Sat - Rest

Sun - Treadmill 10km 38:39

The Wednesday run was a sure fire sign I wasn't feeling well. The heart rate was much higher than normal (pace slower) and 8km into my threshold run I was toast. So a week with no real sessions in there but these things happen. Hoping to get back into it next week.

Total for the week 53.7kms...

Sunday, March 22, 2015

Craughwell 10 miler

This was my 5th time of running the C10. I ran my 10 mile PB here back in 2011 where I had a ding-dong battle with Paul Buckley. That was probably my favourite 'race' of all time as we swapped the lead many times but he got away from me in the last 2 miles. I ended up running 53:20. Since then I've ran 53:33 in 2012, 55:14 in 2013 and 54:02 last year. Pretty consistent times but was hoping that I could have a big race today and maybe dip under 53....

Traning-wise I was happy though a little underdone. I knew I'd be good until around 8 miles, and then the last couple were going to hurt. My plan was to run the first 10km in 32:45 and then hang on. My best times on this course were all negative splits and the way the breeze was blowing today it was going to be a tough first few miles, with a friendlier run home. That worked well for me.

A few kms warm-up and then lined up for the start. Mick Clohisey was the stand-out runner - with a big group of Raheny green and whites for company. The race started (one of the weirdest starts I can recall - we all looked at each other as if to say "was that the start?"). And we were off...

Mick hit the lead and I went straight into second. Nobody went with me so within 400m and I was in no-mans land. It was going to be a 10 mile time trial. I felt good from the start and despite running into the breeze you get a nice downhill to get the revs up. My watch was set to 1km auto-lap so I had the updates from the watch each km, and I was manually keeping an eye on my mile splits by making a note of the time as I passed each mile marker,

After the first mile it was starting to get a bit tougher and you could certainly notice the breeze. Mick was already a good way up the road and I'd opened up a decent gap. I knew if I could run a solid first few miles it was going to get easier. The course is tough but fair - a few drags here and there where I really focused on keeping my cadence high and I knew from my km splits that my time was okay.

At around 3 and a half miles we took a right turn and it got a lot easier - I could feel my pace lift straight away. It was all about keeping focused and ticking off the miles. On reaching half way I looked at the watch and I was around 26:30 and I knew I could run the second half quicker. Just had to do it. After another right turn it got easier again and I really started to motor. My km splits were well under target time but in the back of my mind was the nagging doubt of the wheels coming off at some point. Through 6 miles and still felt great and then crossed the 10km point in 32:41 so I had a bit of time on my side....

It was a shade over 6kms to go and I knew if I could hold 3:20/km pace I had a new PB. That's pretty much what happened - I was on the km countdown and my splits were all good. If I ran a slow one the next one would bounce back to get me back on track. Just before 8 miles we took another right turn and this is the twisty part of the course - a small country lane. No support whatsoever down there and I was glad to take a left hand turn back onto the main road and I got a good lift from the supporters on that last mile and a half stretch back up to the finish. I was still feeling okay and I really attacked and lifted the pace and felt very strong right up to the finish line where I recorded a new PB of 52:41 for second place. That's 5:16/mile pace or 3:16/km pace so a very solid race.

Well done to Mick who won in classy 49:29 (on tired marathon training legs). He'll have a super run in Rotterdam in 3 weeks time when he freshens up. The Raheny lads then filled up the next 4 spots and then a few more familiar local faces started to filter through the finish. All in all a great day and I was delighted how I ran as I felt in control the whole way.

Here are the km splits:

3:04 / 3:19 / 3:25 / 3:18 / 3:19 / 3:26 / 3:13 / 3:18 (8km in 26:22) / 3:09 / 3:10 (10km in 32:41) / 3:22 / 3:14 / 3:14 / 3:17 / 3:24 / 3:08 (16km in 52:19 - second 8km in 25:57) / 0:22. Finish 52:41.

That's 87.9kms for the week. According to McMillan that's my best ever run - any distance so that's extra pleasing. It still doesn't give me the sub 70 minute half though (70:16) but I'm sure it's there or thereabouts....

Saturday, March 21, 2015

Mon to Sat

Here's the first 6 days of the week:

Mon - Treadmill 10km recovery run 35:59 (3:36's)

Tue - 2.0km up, 12km threshold 39:51 (3:19's), 2.3km down (outdoors)

Wed - Claregalway 11.1km recovery run 40:34 (3:39's)

Thu - 2.0km up, strides, 6 x 1km at 3:00/km pace (2% incline - recovery 90 secs), 2.3km down

Fri - Claregalway 12.6km recovery run (3:46's)

Sat - Claregalway 5.0km out of zone 21:17 (4:15's)

A good couple of sessions there - a very encouraging outdoor threshold run on St Patrick's day in perfect running weather. That's 51 seconds quicker than the previous week. So much more benefit getting the runs completed outside as compared to the treadmill - I feel a lot stronger as a result.

A repeat of my speed session on Thursday from last week. I was at the top of my threshold zone and dipped into the tempo zone towards the end of the session. Felt much more comfortable this week so I think I'll keep doing this session but lengthen the reps slightly.

Hitting my zones and found it much easier to get into the zones this week - you won't hear me saying that very often. I think that 3,000m lifted my heart rate to new levels and anything below that suddenly seems a lot more manageable.

Left knee still giving me some grief. Lots of stretching and foam rolling and all that - if I could only get it fixed once and for all I'd really put in a good block of training....

Craughwell 10 tomorrow. If I can maintain the pace from the run on Tuesday for another 4.1kms I'll be in with a PB shout....

Sunday, March 15, 2015

Masters gold medal

Another week to report:

Mon - Treadmill 10km recovery in 36:13 (3:37's)

Tue - 2km up, 12km threshold in 40:42 (3:24's), 2km down

Wed - 2km up, strides, 6 x 3 mins at 3:00/km pace/2% incline, 2km down

Thu -  Treadmill 10km recovery in 36:12 (3:37's)

Fri - Claregalway recovery run 14.8km in 54:39 (3:42's)

Sat - Claregalway 9.5km in 38:58 out of zone (4:06's)

Sun - Masters indoors 3,000m gold in 8:56 (all up 6.6kms)

Total for the week 78.0kms.

A good outdoor threshold run on Tuesday but died a bit the last 4km. A speed session on the treadmill running 1km reps in 3:00 on 2% incline off 90 seconds recovery the next day. Then the indoors on Sunday. I went out to the front and ran the first km in 2:58. Started to feel it towards the end of the second km (2;59) and was overtaken by a V35 runner who I couldn't respond to. Managed to hold the pace until the finish but had no zip to finish really strong (last km 2;59), A good run and nice to win this the V40 category for the third year on the trot, Great to run on the indoor track as well and really enjoyed it.

Craughwell 10 miler next week.....

Sunday, March 08, 2015

Just not happening

Here's another week:

Mon - 9.5kms recovery run in 36:21 (3:50's)

Tue - 2km up, 10km threshold 32:15, 2km down

Wed - 2km up, 4 x 30 sec strides, 6 x 3 mins tempo, 2km down

Thu - treadmill recovery run 10km 36:10 (3:37's)

Fri - gentle 20 mins out of zone plus strides

Sat - Kinvara 10km 2nd in 33:19

Sun - 14.8km recovery run in 55:53 (3:47's)

I ran some 3 minute efforts on the treadmill on Wednesday. I started out at 3:00/km pace at 1.5% incline and got quicker each rep. A tough workout but the heart rate just not getting high enough...

The race on Saturday was another tough one. Very windy and the first 5.5km of the race was challenging. Then felt great for the run home with the help of the wind. A sponsored athlete was over from Wales and he won in a classy 31:17. He was a sub 30 minute guy (3:38 for 1500) and even he found it tough. I'd say I'm in a minute better shape than 33:19 but just not getting good conditions for quick times....

I'll keep plugging away. Masters indoors next weekend - I've entered the 3,000m and I also have the option to double up in the 1,500......

Sunday, March 01, 2015

Just like that

The week just gone:

Mon - Treadmill recovery run 10km 36:41

Tue - 2km up, 10km threshold 32:29, 2km down

Wed - 2km up, 10km threshold 32:30, 2km down

Thu - Treadmill recovery run 10km 36:20

Fri - 2km up, 2 x 3km tempo 8:57 and 8:52, 2km down

Sat - Treadmill recovery run 10km 35:59

Sun - 2km up, 14km threshold 45:07, 2km down (went through 10km in 32:17...)

Total 86.0kms for the week.

A good week all in all. Three threshold runs and tried to up the pace a little and get a bit higher up my threshold zone. And my first tempo session in yonks (maybe since last November?), I was happy with that - both 3km efforts nicely under 9 minutes and was certainly working hard but that heart rate wasn't going as high as I'd like. But it was a start. I may try a sub 15 minute 5km next week for something different...

All the above were treadmill runs due to very poor weather. I need to get outdoors. The paces are very flattering and I reckon I'm 6 or 7 seconds per km quicker on the treadmill compared to perfect outdoor conditions.

Knee still not right ever since the XC. Going for a rub tomorrow. It's fine when running but aches a lot post run. Something I'm going to have to live with for a while I'd say.

Other than that very busy with the lactate testing. Plus I've started taking a track session in Claremorris on Thursday evenings which is great fun. Still playing snooker once a week and actually played okay on Wednesday for the first time in a while (high break of 36 but kept missing the key balls). Darts are also going well - doing a bit more practise and that's what it's all about. Beer intake steady but room for improvement....