Archive | August, 2009
30 Aug

Saturday
Run leading in the morning which turned into my long run for the week as I took a more committed group for an 18km jaunt around Jells Park and surrounds. This time I had seven people with me, two of them turned back at the 13km mark as they were only after 16km, the remaining five stuck with me to the end and more or less finished as a group, much better than last week :-)

Then it was a bit cold and wet in the afternoon, what a shame, all that weeding will have to wait for another weekend, much better off inside with a good book, wouldn’t want to get a cold a week out from a half marathon would I?

Sunday
A cold morning, but sunny, I figured I better get 12km out of the way in case it decided to turn nasty in the afternoon. So I really should not have turned on the TV while I was getting dressed, OK, I’ll just watch one episode of the totally banal but disturbingly hypnotic Iron Chef America, then I’ll go out. Crop top on, long sleeved top on and contacts in, damn, now I’ve seen the secret ingredient for the second episode, what on earth are they going to do with frozen peas, I MUST know.

An hour and a half later than planned I got out for a relaxing 12km along the Gardiner’s Creek Trail near home.

Although I am not expecting anything special from the HM next Sunday I suppose I better take it a bit easier this week to make sure I am fresh, I would still like to have a reasonably decent run. The no speedwork no hillwork directive will force me into a little taper anyway. My sore hammy tendon thingy is a bit better today, did not bother me as much on the long run yesterday as it did last week and getting up off the couch after an afternoon nap was easier too, not as much stiffness.

Kathryn, I see a doctor at Olympic Park Sports Medicine, they also have a clinic at East Melbourne, I highly recommend anyone who has a sports injury to see a Sports Doc rather than a normal GP, the Sports Doc wants to see you back out there doing what you love.

Aghhh!!!! I am a week away from my first half marathon in almost 3 years!!!!!! I should have run at least 5 in that time, I was starting to wonder if I’d ever be OK to run one again.

Pain in the Butt

28 Aug

Mine to be precise.

I mentioned last post, or was it the post before, anyway, I have been getting a bit of a pain deep in the left glute and just assumed piriformis syndrome or some such and filed it away to mention to the Doc when I saw her today.

It’s not having too much of an impact on training but it does start to grab on long runs or if I’ve been sitting for too long.

So in to see Dr K today for my regular once over, I mentioned piriformis, she suggested “don’t tell me what you think it is, tell me what hurts and I’ll tell you what I think it is”, she’s a good doc, knows exactly how to handle patients in the Google Everything era.

Stand here, bend there, touch your toes (an ambitious request if ever there was one), flex this, push that, prodding my fleshy bits (ie my fat butt) etc etc and piriformis syndrome it ‘aint, kinda glad about that because it is one of those non specific not really easy to sort out kind of ailments. Instead it’s likely to just be some mild tendon inflammation (tendinopathy is the fancy word for it) and pat on the back for me for getting on to things early, having very much learned my lesson from previous run through it stubbornness. I’ve a prescription for anti-inflamms in my hot little hand and am being sent off for an ultra sound so she can have a better look at what is going on in there. That’s why I like Dr K, not much speculation going on, no “don’t run for a couple of weeks and see what happens”, it’s straight to the radiologist for what ever scans are required and then get on top of things.

I am very heartened to hear words like, just and mild.

In the meantime I am still allowed to run, just gotta take the anti-inflams, but no hills and no speed work until she’s seen the ultra sound results, I am allowed to run the HM because I wasn’t racing it anyway.

Oh, she had a good dig at my shins too, very happy with how they feel and no dry needling, that’s gotta be a good thing.

Last nights session was good, though it did involve both hills and speedwork :lol: We did a 20 minute tempo run, 10:30 out and 9:30 back, though like last time I turned at 10:15, just making it that little bit harder for the guys to catch me (and no one did this time). The last time I did this session on the 6th of August I covered 4.12 km (4:52 pace), last night I covered 4.26 (4:42 pace), needless to say I was pretty happy with that.

Better go make the appointment for that ultrasound……..

Fun Hurts

26 Aug

I am allowed free reign on the climbing wall at the gym now. I had my safety induction yesterday which pretty much amounted to satisfying the trainer that I had opposable thumbs and thereby am able to operate the carabineers and that I wasn’t a moron who was going to try to climb the wall without a harness or dive off head first (less tangible admittedly but I think the fact that I wasn’t drooling or running around with a bucket on my head convinced him that I am mostly in control of my faculties). After a bit of a mess around under supervision I signed my life away with my shaky wall climbing weakened arms and I can now muck about there to my hearts desire. I last went rock climbing when I was in high school (when you ran the danger of having Pterodactyls* pick you off the cliffs), things were a bit less high tech then. We didn’t have a fancy harness, instead we were given a length of cloth webbing that we had to fashion into a harness with knots and stuff, I kid you not, no wiz bang self locking carabineers either, just the garden variety ones. Clearly my gym is far more concerned for the health and safety of its patrons than the Outdoor Ed company responsible for the lives of a bunch of school students :lol:

Ahhh, things were simpler back in the day.

And possibly just a little less litigious.

The rock climbing lark wasn’t as hard as I thought it would be, you do use the legs quite a bit so I tried to push myself up the wall rather than drag up with my arms and shoulders. Or so I thought because my bloody arms and shoulders are killing me today.

Its just part of my get stronger without tedious weight lifting plan, I’d rather drag myself up a wall than push and pull stupid weights.

Ok, running, I have a confession to make…….

Both my runs so far this week have been on the treadmill :oops:

In my defence it has been freakishly cold and windy in Melbourne this week and I HATE running in the wind. Last night in particular we had severe wind warnings and the full brunt of a cold front hit the city just as I was due to start, so gym it was. Monday was a relaxed 8km and last night was about 8.4km, including a pyramid session, 250, 500, 750, 1km, 750, 500, 250 with 250 recoveries, only hitting about 4:30 pace but I have a proper session on Thursday so no need to go nuts, it was just to stop me going mental from boredom on the tready.

Then after that out to The Espy in St Kilda for a taping of RockWiz, great night, very funny, Brian Nankervis really knows how to work a crowd, Julia is a great host but Brian was doing all the work before each taping and deserves a fair whack of the credit. I really enjoyed myself and when it’s on TV I’ll know all the answers ;-)

Bit tired now though.

Pilates reformer classes twice so far this week too, with a mat class booked for Friday, I am definitely starting to feel the benefits from this now having gone 3 times a week for 4 weeks now. Though this morning I got a cramp in my calf when I had my foot in the strap on the reformer, ouch, that was awkward.

* by the way I would like it noted that I managed to spell Pterodactyls without the aid of spell check or a dictionary, finally, being a dinosaur nerd as a kid has payed off.

It was there all along!

23 Aug

So relieved when the weekend came around, finally, some time to rest.

Friday was a rest day, I was going to do some no impact cardio at the gym before work but was feeling tired after the session on Thursday night so I skipped it and just did the pilates at lunch time. Thursdays session was 2 by 3 minutes (2 minute recovery), 2 by 2 minutes (1 minute recovery) and 4 by 1 minute (1 minute recovery).

Saturday morning was run leading, I had some feedback from some participants that they did not feel comfortable joining the long run group as they felt they would be dropped. I assured them they would be fine and I would look after them, especially as most of them are entering the HM so they need to get those long runs in. This week the long run was 16km and a course was devised that would give people a choice of dropping out at 8km, 13km or go on for 16km, this made the most of the run leaders that we have.

Disappointingly it pretty much turned out to be all talk on behalf of the runners that got in my ear on Tuesday night as only one of them went on to complete the whole distance, the others dropping off at 13km and opting for coffee and breakfast in the cafe instead :roll: what can you do hey? It’s up to them whether or not they want to prepare properly, I can only offer to take them on the runs and leave it at that, in the end we covered 15.5km. It was a pretty slow run and towards the end my piriformis was grabbing and giving me some grief, my hammies have been getting tight too, time to start sitting on the tennis ball.

Today was another 15km at a quicker pace, my left side got pretty tight again and it was a bit of a slog for the second half. My hammies haven’t really given me much bother before, I am going to have to keep an eye on it, I’ve got my standard appointment with Dr K next Friday I’ll see what she says, it’s been over a year since I had a retread on my orthotics so I suppose I better sort that out too.

I wasn’t really sure where I was going to run today as I was feeling a bit blah. I decided to try a path that I’ve seen the start of heaps of times but have never bothered to explore. Well bloody hell, I can’t believe I’ve been running around this area for 4 years now and have only just discovered that the Gardiners Creek Trail ends (or, it could be argues, starts) barely 1km from my front door! What a find, kilometres of trail though the ‘burbs with a lovely bushy setting, the section through Burwood was even gravel. I was only going to go out for a 10km run this morning but I ended up with 15km because I was enjoying running somewhere new.

My sister, her hubby and my gorgeous 2 month old nephew were in town this weekend so I got to spend quite a bit of time with them yesterday. Little Riley is just delightful and had stacks of giggles and smiles for his Aunty, we even had a bit of a chat :-) We haven’t had a family catch up for a while and as per usual I ate and drank too much, could explain the blahs this morning.

Umm, I did have some rest in there as well, naps on the couch this afternoon.

Back in to the fray again tomorrow.

Candle, both ends, burning

20 Aug

These days it seems I am only home to eat, shower and sleep and half the time I can’t even be bothered sorting out the eating bit (toast is not really a complete and nutritious dinner is it?).

It’s just a shame the pesky day job has to get in the way of all the things I want to do before and after the working day, I am trying to perfect the art of micro napping at my desk but my head keeps crashing into the laptop screen :lol:

Therefore of an evening there hasn’t been much time for tooling around on the internet, so I am now taking up some of my employer’s valuable time for a quick update, shhhhhhhhhh

Monday – Reformer pilates class before work
an easy 8.5km after work and then coaching after that.

Tuesday – Coaching at 6am
Gymstick class at lunch time , this is a good low impact strength workout for people like me that just get bored lifting weights. It is doubles as a core workout as you really need to work to keep yourself stabilised and not let the bands pull you out of alignment.
An easy 5km warm up and then a Melbourne Marathon training session after work, 13.3km for the day.

Wednesday – Reformer pilates class before work, great instructor, lots of ab work
Massage after work

Today – Coaching at 6am and an easy 5km run for me, and then I have my own club training after work.

I was expecting to be pretty sore today as yesterdays pilates class was quite challenging, but so far I’ve coughed once or twice and had a few laughs and nothing! After 4 solid weeks of pilates and other core work the DOMS has gone, I am getting stronger!! Now if only I could lay off my twin dark masters of chocolate and wine I might stand half a chance of actually having some core muscles to show off, Hmmmm, give up chocolate and wine, can’t see it happening, PMT is just around the corner, it’s either chocolate or homicide.

Oh oh oh, I am booked in for a go on the climbing wall at the gym next week, can’t wait it looks like fun (assuming I actually have the strength to pull up my own body weight of course!)

Ummm, think I better go do some work, something’s gotta keep me in sneakers and running clothes…………..

Putting the FUN

16 Aug

back in fun run :-)

I took myself off to the Sandy Point Half today, only I was running just under a quarter as I’d entered the 5km event.

Now it wasn’t me but someone seemed to have put in an order for an apocalypse this morning because the wind that had howled all night and kept me awake continued well into the morning and was even more fearsome down on Beach Road than it was in Blackburn.

But hey, what can you do? Everyone who fronted up had to face the same conditions so you just put your head down and get on with it. I did decide though that there was not much point chasing a PB, I was happy to head out for a good tempo run and try to run evenly, not get stressed and not fade out towards the end as I’ve done so much this year, basically I was just looking for some small redemption and to start regaining my confidence in myself.

Starting as I meant to go on in the confidence stakes I did position myself pretty much in the front row, why not be a little cocky hey ;-)

The start went uphill a little, out of the Jetty Road carpark and the left on to Beach Road, wooosh, wicked side wind that then turned into a wall of a head wind. The front runners were off, I dropped a couple of women pretty quickly and all of a sudden I am on my own, no mobile windbreaks for me today and the realisation that I was the second female running :shock:

I was cruising along pretty comfortably, trying not to fight the wind and conserving some energy in the hope that it would follow me home and give me a chance to pick up the pace. The turnaround came nice and quickly but it was here that I buggered things up somewhat, I overshot by about 4 metres and ran around the outside of the cones instead of through the middle (to my credit every other run I’ve done with a turnaround has just had one set of cones to run around, not a neat little path between two cones). So when I turned around the two women who were chasing me turned in front of me, bugger bugger bugger, this let them get away from me and then I never caught them back again. The women who eventually ran second pulled away quite strongly and probably would have ran over the top of me anyway, I managed to catch third but then she kicked over the last Km and I couldn’t get her either and I ended up running fourth.

Not to worry, I know I still have some work to do to get some speed back. The best thing is that for the first time in a very long time I finished smiling and feeling positive, I didn’t get stomach cramps, I held my pace and didn’t fade and the 10km starters were cheering as I came around the corner which was quite cool :-)

The time wasn’t flash, 23:30, but the conditions truly sucked and it’s probably the happiest non PB run I’ve had because I am starting to feel good again.

Splits
4:47
4:42
4:39
4:41
4:37

The much anticipated tailwind for the run home didn’t really materialise, there were some brief moments of eerie stillness but mostly just a brutal swirly wind that didn’t know which direction it wanted to blow in, the best bit being the almost literal wall of wind that we had to run in to on the way down the finish chute, yikes!!

After finishing I changed out of flats and headed out for a 10km cooldown along the 10km race course, I saw heaps of mates running the HM along the way so plodded along as a one woman cheersquad.

Gracious

14 Aug

so much chat for such a little post :lol:

I love it, all comments are welcome, all opinions considered.

Without having all the complicated muscle biopsy’s I can safely attest to the fact that I am pretty confident that I am made up of predominately 99.999% slow twitch muscle fibre. I played baseball for a couple of seasons in my mid 20s, if I didn’t get on the ball and give it a decent whack there would be a fair bet I wouldn’t make it to first, speed is not my forte. Its for this reason that 1500 is my lowest limit, I’d run less if it was needed for points but I’ll never take it seriously or bother targeting my training that way. I am taking on 1500 because I like a challenge ;-)

There are two things going on here for me, I love to run for the sake of it, it is therapy, it is a joy, being alone in the bush with endless trails ahead of me is my idea of a good day out, for no purpose other than the fact that it will make me happy.

On the other hand I also have some goals I want to achieve, I love to train, I look forward to the weekly interval training sessions, to having a laugh and talking nonsense with my friends, I love the camaraderie of the team, race days are as social as they are challenging, the heartbreak of a crap run and the shear joy of a PB.

Yup, a total contradiction, I live for the pure joy of it and the goal driven training.

30 to 40km a week won’t cut it for me, I respond well to the higher mileage because I prefer the longer distances. There is also the fact that it’s not enough, it would leave me wanting more and I’d spend the rest of the time cross training like mad at the gym to expend the pent up energy or pacing the house like a caged line. Of course there is the ever present spectre of injury, I accept this and thus temper my enthusiasm with sensible training, massage and stepping back when I know I need to.

I won’t shy away from the fact that I am hoping for a good showing during the cross country and road season next year, my early and not well thought out at this stage goals are –

Sandown 10km – sub 45 minutes
Half Marathon – 90 minutes
15km – 65 minutes

And to PB all cross country courses that I have run previously, I don’t feel this is an overly ambitious goal and I am yet to enter a winter season at full strength.

To do this I plan on keeping myself in one piece until the end of the year, have a bit of fun mucking about on the track and then start to build up though the early part of next year in preparation for a good Winter 2010.

I may also think about not looking after my own program and think about engaging the services of a coach to provide some guidance.

No running today, I did my wussy little girly strength session at the gym :-)

Did I mention….

12 Aug

That last week was almost 65km? It was the biggest in quite some time; no wonder I was so tired by Sunday afternoon.

Happily everything feels fine, I’ve built up again very slowly, as usual probably alot more slowly than most would have but I’ve made it to August without a serious injury!!! I will be content to sit at around 60 to 65km a week for the rest of the year as we are coming in to the summer season so there is no need for more than that. I am not expecting anything fantastic from the half marathon in September, we probably won’t have a full women’s team contesting anyway so I’ll be happy just to get around. I am thinking of making it a progressive run as the course is pretty much 7km laps, I’ll work out some lap splits closer to the time, this will make it more interesting than just trying to survive a 21.1km run. I might try and find another HM before cross country starts again next year and give it a proper go then.

The great news is that I have finally started to lose some weight. I gained about 2.5kg in the post Trailwalker injury freak out take a break and start again slowly wilderness. I’ve lost a kilo in the last two weeks or so and it seems happy to stay away and I am happy for it to stay away, 1.5kg to go and I’ll be at the weight I am when I am running well and feeling strong and happy. I am not dieting, I hate it dieting, it’s stupid, pointless and miserable, it is just the increased activity that has taken care of things. Just to prove that I am not dieting I am currently (as in there is a bottle open at the moment, not right this second before midday while I am at work currently) drinking a fab Pinot, Mr Frog (Yerring Station, I promise I didn’t only buy it because it had a cute label), it’s heavenly and on Sunday afternoon it went down a treat with some nice soft brie.

Monday – An easy 8km

Tuesday – Melbourne Marathon training session, an easy 3.5km warm up before hand (in the rain, a carbon copy of my warm up the week before), luckily I used up all the rain and it was nice and clear for the session and we had another good turn out, all up 11 something Kms for the day.

Wednesday – no running today, 35 minutes on the elliptical trainer at the gym and then I’ll be back at lunch time for a 30 minute core class then massage tonight.

Duty

9 Aug

Since last time

Saturday 11.7km at Jells Park run leading for the Melbourne Marathon training sessions, a toe numbingly cold morning, but lovely and clear.

AV road relays in the afternoon, unfortunately our third woman pulled out so we were one short of an open women’s team. I think fate has decided that I am just not meant to run this round, the last two years I was still recovering from injury and the club I was in at the time was on duty so I did some recording. As it happens CCA was on the duty roster for this round too so guess what?! yup, I was recording again, thankfully this time for an Open Men’s team, far easier to handle than the juniors I’ve copped the last two years. To be fair the juniors themselves are fine it’s their bloody parents yelling in my face that are a pain in the butt.

So a windswept couple of hours were spent on the main straight with the other chick from my team manning the stop watch and me with the clipboard.

Our open men’s Div 6 team won (again) and with that they wrapped up the premiership with two rounds left, not a bad debut for the boys ;-)

Sunday 18km long run this morning (1:42:00), I just did two laps around the block. Why? you might ask, and fair enough too, it’s not especially exciting. Well, tummy a bit upset the morning and I didn’t want to wander too far from conveniences. Lucky too because I needed the loo about the time I was passing my house after the first lap, so a quick dash inside, change into short sleeve shirt, swallow a gel and off again for the second lap.

That’s it, done, nap time I think.

Claire?! That’s a fat girls name

7 Aug

I’ve been tired and busy so no time to post this week, also trying to sort out something not running related that is causing me to feel a little less chatty than usual.

Monday – Pilates at lunch time and good tempo run, just over 8km

Tuesday – Haircut, now super streamlined, think Annie Lenox, though sadly without the amazing vocal talent. Melbourne Marathon run leading tonight, I did a warm up of 3.4km in pouring rain then the coaching session for Melbourne Marathon participants, about 6.5km

Wednesday – Pilates at lunch time and rest day, massage after work.

Thursday – 7.5 km in the am with some of the runners I coach, helping the slower runners though their 6km progressive run, managed to get them all working a little harder than they do when running this session on their own. 7.3 km in the pm out in windy Berwick a 20 minute tempo run about 10 seconds per km faster than Monday’s effort. 10.5 minutes out and 9.5 minutes back, but I cheated and turned at around 10 minutes and 10 seconds to make it harder for the rest to catch me, I made it back ahead of the group, just, they were breathing down my neck, I don’t mind being chased down, it keeps me from slacking off. There was lots of swirly strong wind that blew me all over the path and would not wholly commit to whether or not it wanted to be a head wind, tail wind or both at once. In spite of this it was a good session, I felt I was running strongly and vague hints of pre Trailwalker fitness are starting to show themselves again.

Friday – Will be another running rest day but I am off to Pilates again at lunch time. I’ve been doing this regularly for 3 weeks and I am starting to feel some benefit, it definitely hurts less the next day so I must be getting stronger.

Aww, I just read in the paper that John Hughes has died, the kids of today have their stupid sparkling vampires lead by the seemingly vacuous Robert Pattison (sexiest man alive, I don’t think so, he always looks like he needs a bath and a bit of a slapping), but we had, Emilio, Molly, Judd, Matthew and stacks of others. They may not have been high art but Pretty in Pink and The Breakfast Club are still some of my favourite ever films.

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