Sunday, September 30, 2012

Long Run ~~~

Mistake in changing days?  Possibly!  It was so windy and cold this morning, 7 degrees when I started at around 10:00am and now, at 1:30pm just 11 degrees.  I wasn't expecting the wind to be so cold; outside the house where it's sheltered, is just perfect, but where I ran was very uncomfortably cold.

Program :
10km @ LT pace (for me 6:41m/k).

I began and finished at the Highlands School.  Though the program was 10km, I'd decided that if I felt OK at 8km, I'd do one extra kilometre.  I felt quite OK at 8k so I did the extra 1km, making 11 km for the day.

This morning's 10km

Few drills to warm-up
10km in 1:07.14
Avg. Pace 6:42m/k.....close enough!
7:14,  6:52,  6:49,  6:35,  6:24,  6:26,  6:40,  6:44,  6:42,  6:32 (+ 1km extra in 6:19)
Usual stretches to finish.

 To clarify the above ::  10km in 1:07:14  + 1km in 6:19  =  11km in 1:13:33...I hope!  If I'm wrong, Ewen, I don't want to know about it!!

I was happy with this run considering the hills involved and the terribly cold and windy weather.  Having finished at 11km I still had to walk just over 1km back to the school....but I won't count that in the total! 

For 3 key workouts this week...26.5km (excl. cross-training)

My goal at the completion of the 12 week 5km program ..... 5km race at the Canberra AIS track on November 22nd, ACTVAC event, 8:00pm.    Fishers Ghost 5km is just before that, on November 11.  I might as well go the whole hog!

Saturday, September 29, 2012

Today Off ~~~

I've changed my long run from today to tomorrow...two reasons.  Firstly, though today is sunny it's also  very windy, and secondly I'm a bit tired.  Looking at Weather-zone, tomorrow looks like it'll be the better day;  hope I haven't made a big mistake!

So, with nothing to report on, I might as well fill up the space with more memories of past happy days....

SMH Half Marathon, 2007...'flying' down Hunter Street!

Friday, September 28, 2012

Cross-Training ~~~

A very warm morning but complete cloud cover and thunderstorms predicted for later.  Even if storms weren't forecast, I'd know they were somewhere within 100km radius just by observing Amy who, by twitching her nose and shaking and cringing under the table or begging to be picked up, knows exactly, better than any weather bureau, when a storm is on its way!  Poor little thing; nothing soothes her fear.

I was pretty much spot on guessing the distance for these easy running days :

This morning :

Few drills
28 min easy running
4 x 80m strides.....walk back after each
8 min easy running.
Few stretches

35 min easy running  :  4.3km (incl. strides & walk back after each) 

Another trip down memory lane!  With winning trophies, Fishers Ghost, 2006.

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Workout #2 ~~~ Tempo Run

A very hot morning for a tempo run and so I invited VP along for the ride with the hope that he'd fade in the heat more quickly than I do, but what a silly thing to think!  Absolutely nothing puts him off the pace, whereas for me, being only human, I slow down on hills, get tired, feel hot, perspire and, ultimately, get left behind!

Tempo Run
1.5km warm-up
6.5km @ MT pace (for me 6:32m/k)
1.5km cool-down. 

Where VP and I fought for victory!

I drove to Renwick:

A few drills
1.5km warm-up easy

6.5km in 42:04
6:28;   6:30;   6:20;   6:32;   6:35;   6:28;   + 500m in 3:09
Avg. Pace 6:27m/k.....very close!

1.5km cool-down
Stretches to finish off a good run!

For a short time I was ahead of VP after we set off, but in no time at all he was ahead by about 15m.  Not much panic but there was a giant of  a hill ahead!  He got even further away as I puffed my way uphill and that blasted VP was 50m in front before I reached the top!

"Just you wait, 'enry ' 'iggins," I said.  "Just you wait till we're going downhill and then on the flat!"  Biding my time, running tall and with soft feet(!), I steadily lessened the distance between us and soon had a lead of a few metres, which grew longer and longer the further we ran until at about 4km I had a lead of nearly 50m.  Another couple of hills saw VP creeping back until I had just 15m lead!

It was time to show VP who was in charge!  Without letting good form, steady pace, relaxed position - and all the other things we're supposed to watch out for when training (!) - deteriorate, I stepped on the gas with 1.5km to go.....and so I thrashed and slashed VP to finish 68m in front!  Another glorious victory!

For Today - 9.5km


Wednesday, September 26, 2012

Cross-Training ~~~

Up, down, across and every which way through Renwick streets this morning for some easy running.  I've no idea what distance, as I run for 'time' on these easy days.  I'm guessing about 3km - 4km; certainly no more than that.  Next time, just to satisfy my curiosity, I'll wear my Garmin and see if I'm guessing right.

A couple of drills
20 min easy running
3 x 80m strides......walk back
8 min easy running.

Today....32 minutes.

Pleasant morning; heavy clouds hanging around; a bit windy especially in the 'across' streets.  I'm enjoying these 'timed' easy run days. 

Glancing through photos, I came across this one.....what memories it brought back!

Finishing Canberra 50km, 2006, with 'Horrie' who ran with me the entire distance.

It was a very good year!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Workout #2...Track ~~~

I went across to Chevalier College in Bowral to run today's track session on a proper track instead of running in rectangles on the street as I've been doing in the past. To my surprise, the lanes had been marked in a different section of the oval and it's now the shape a track should be and the distances of each lane correct also. Big improvement!  I didn't have to rely on the Garmin vibration to tell me when to stop as I do when using the street as a track.  All I had to do was run in the outside lane and I had a perfect 400m! 

Program :
10-20 min warm-up
200 (200 RI), 400 (400 RI); 600 (400 RI), 800 (400 RI), 800 (400 RI), 600 (400 RI), 400 (400RI), 200m
10 min cool-down.

The grass track was in good shape and the lanes clearly marked after the college athletics carnival last month.  However, I managed to land on what could possibly be the only bit of stinging thistle in the oval and, in bare feet, it felt like treading on a piece of glass.  I managed to avoid it thereafter!  I didn't find the repeats hard at all......maybe I should run faster but I try to stay with the times set out in the program. The McMillan calculator would run these distances quite a bit faster.

400m lane Chev Track.

1.5km warm-up
4 strides

1:05;   2:10;   3:32;   4:39;   4:38;   3:38;   2:12;   1:02

1.5km cool-down

7km today.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Cross-Training ~~~

I used a road in Renwick for today's training which was ......

50 wobbly lunges warm-up
1 Set Magill Drills.....100m road.
Stride between each.

Short Hill Repeats : walk down between : 
8 x 40m....I don't think the road was steep enough; will look further next time.

About 40 minutes on a beautiful, sunny day!

At home ~  a weeping cherry  ~ so very pretty!

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Workout #3 ~~~ Long Run

If there is such a thing as a short 'long' run, this morning's 8km would have to be it!  Because of that distance, I had VP running with me.  I don't usually invite him on a long run because he wins most times, but for 8km I gave myself a good chance of beating him!

We both lined up at the Highlands School gate and, after giving each other 'the evil eye', we set off.  However, about 300m into our run VP took the lead and in no time was more than 50m ahead.  No panic, no angst...I knew I needed a couple of kilometres to get the legs going, but after that the race was on for one and all!

Where the race was lost!

By the time we reached the streets in Renwick - I was keeping to the flattest streets I could find! - I had a short lead of 1km.  As I passed him, I couldn't resist a smirk and a snide remark like, "See you at the finish, sucker!"

 From thereon VP didn't get a look in, not even when a few short hills had to be negotiated;  I kept the same rhythm going and flew ahead (?) along the roads, finishing 264m ahead of VP.  Yippee Ki Yay! What a glorious, triumphant moment that was!

Now to be practical :  The Program......8km @ LT pace (6:45m/k based on my 5k time)

8km in 52:14
6:54;  6:50;  6:24;  6:33;  6:16;  6:15;  6:31;  6:28
Avg. Pace 6:32m/k!

I began with a couple of the usual drills and finished, very pleased with myself, with a few stretches on the grass back at the school.

Total for the 3 key workouts this week  :  25.7km (excl. XTraining)

Friday, September 21, 2012

Cross-Training ~~~

Back on the road in Renwick for some easy running :

3 - 4 drills....
25 minutes easy aerobic running...up, down and around the roads.
4 x 80m strides (walk back)
10 minutes easy running
Usual stretches.

 This was pretty much the same as I did on Wednesday.....just 10 minutes longer.  I've enjoyed the two days of very easy running.  Today, very dull weather, windy and more rain heading this way by the look of the grey skies.  I looked at my program to see what tomorrow's long run would be and find it is only 8km. Hardly what I'd call a long run!  In which case..... I wonder if VP is up for another contest; we'll see!

40 minutes today. 

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Amazing Pacing!

....Well, I thought it was......for me anyhow!

1st 3.5km of Tempo Run

2nd 3.5km

Program :  Tempo Run
1.5km warm-up
3.5km @ ST pace (6:26m/k for me)
1.5km easy for recovery
3.5km @ ST pace
1.5km cool-down.

As usual I began with a couple of drills.

1.5km easy warm-up

3.5km in 22:28.  6:26;  6:27;  6:07.  Avg. Pace 6:23m/k
1.5km easy recovery
3.5km in 22:30.  6:27;  6:11;  6:32.  Avg. Pace 6:23m/k
1.5km cool-down + few stretches.

Those 2 x 3.5km were almost identical twins!  Just 2 seconds off in the second 3.5km.  I don't think I've ever been so close in any previous tempo runs and average pacing was exactly the same!  Probably not at all amazing for most runners, but for me, it's doubly amazing!

I had to concentrate to keep in front of VP;  he somehow gets ahead if I relax and start thinking of things other than what I'm doing and then I have to try harder for a while to pass him....which I do!  Competitiveness can be a terrible curse!

The effort was medium to hard but nothing I couldn't cope with!  Yay!  Quite pleased with myself and today's session.  Lovely spring blossoms along the way and a pleasantly warm day.

Total for today....  11.5km.


Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Cross-Training/Easy Run

This morning I tried something different in between track yesterday and tempo run tomorrow.  It's called 'easy running'!  So......I did it my way:

4 drills over loosen up!
20 minutes easy running
3 x 80m strides; walk back between.
7 min easy running
Usual stretches.

All together 30 minutes.

I wanted to run 'by time' not distance and a stop watch was all I needed for thatI hope this will act as a recovery day and, at the same time, provide a little more aerobic running to the week.  I won't count this, or any form of cross-training,  in the weekly total which includes only the three key workouts.

I used Renwick area; a warm day; many clouds waiting to open and hurl more storms our way!  A pleasant cross-training day though.  Now... I should walk Amy and Oscar and be home before the rain!

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Workout # 2 ~~~ Track

Back to the soccer field for today's session.  The grounds were wet and spongy after yesterday afternoon's storms; uneven on one side in particular and the grass needs cutting.  Nevertheless, on with the show in bare feet!

Program :

10-20 min warm-up
2 x 1600m in 9:48/6:07mk
1 x 800m in 4:46/5:57mk
400m RI
10 min cool-down.

Highlands School soccer field.

So easy to guess wrong.  I thought the 800m would be a breeze;  not so!  It was the hardest of the 3 repeats.

2km warm-up
2 drills with strides

2x1600m.....9:25/5:53mk;     9:30/5:57mk.


1km cool-down 

All repeats were good time wise but after 800m I was all done!  I didn't expect a session of just 3 repeats to be such hard work.  However, I stayed ahead of VP and set the two distances by stopping after each repeat when I felt the vibration alert on my wrist.  Neat!

For today ....  6.2km   

Monday, September 17, 2012


And so began the third of my twelve weeks 5km training program.

Drills and long hills was my choice of cross-training :  short warm-up jog.

1 Set Pete Magill drills with strides between each.....over 80m
About 35 minutes.

8 x 60 seconds long uphill - same road in Renwick as last time.
Jog down, wait around for a minute or two

When I ran the 6th hill repeat, I couldn't get to the 60 second marker and so I finished right there.
No use pushing just to say I did eight....and the last two, badly!

 Usual few stretches to finish;   home, showered and 
took Amy and Oscar for their walk before the rain.

Track tomorrow is 1600m AND 800m!    Fun?  As if! 

About 50 minutes cross-training today.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Sunday ~~~ The day off!

Perfectly lovely day with friends at Berrima for lunch and sitting in the sun!

Berrima has the best lolly shop this side of heaven!

Saturday, September 15, 2012

Workout #3 ~~~ Long Run

Knowing I had to run just 10km, I thought it a good opportunity to make it a hilly long run this morning, and so it was up Old South and Range Roads for 5k and down same roads 5km.   I was out of breath on the 5km uphill and had to take several short walk breaks; the return was rolling downhill for most of the way....much easier and speedier!

Program :  10km @ 6:45m/k.....

5km out in 41:11 
Avg. pace 8:14m/k...!

10 hilly kilometres!

 5km back in 35:37
Avg. pace 7:08m/k....better!

The morning weather was superb and the views from the top of the range, spectacular.....

On a clear day....from Range Road with Berrima in the far distance.

 The 5km out was really slow but tried to made up for that on  the way back ......  thoroughly enjoyed the whole run!

Three key workouts  ~~~ 22.5km (excl. cross-training)

Thursday, September 13, 2012

Workout #2 ~~~ Tempo Run

Out early this morning...8:30am!  Two reasons : rain was forecast and the dog groomer was coming to clip and pamper Amy and Oscar!  Unfortunately neither one thinks it's a treat and both go into hiding as soon as it's time!

Program :  Tempo Run
1.5km warm-up
3.5km @ Short Tempo (ST) pace (6:26m/k, based on recent 31:18 5km)
1.5km cool-down.

I returned to Renwick streets for this session :

Few drills before starting
1.5k easy

3.5km in 22:11
6:25;     6:22;     6:11   +   500m in 3:11
Avg. Pace 6:19m/km.

1.5km cool-down + few stretches. 


Whee!   I thought they were good, fast kilometres, but not difficult at all.  I could be as fast as a jack rabbit by the time I finish this 12 week program!


Wednesday, September 12, 2012

I'm Calling It Cross-Training!

A couple of hours spent tidying things in the garden......lots of lunges, squats and occasional hops!

Worked through a Pilates DVD.....about 40 minutes + recommended FIRST "Run Less Run Faster" strength exercises....about 20 minutes. Took Amy and Oscar for their walk....about 30 minutes.

It's now 4:00pm and I'm sitting down for the first time today with a cup of coffee and more exhausted than if I'd run!

And I'm definitely calling all of the above (cuppa excluded) as cross-training!

About 3 to 4 least!

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

First Key Workout....Track~~~

I used the soccer field again today, but was surprised that it felt harder running on the grass surface - meaning slower - than on the roads.  One side of the soccer field is quite spongy and uneven and I felt I needed to be careful not to do anything as stupid as twisting an ankle!   Easy to do if landing on uneven ground.

Program : 
10-20 min warm-up
5 x 800m in 4:46/5:57mk
400m RI
10 min cool-down.

I borrowed 4 witches' hats from the school to mark where I intended to run and placed them in each corner of the soccer field which meant I would run in a rectangular shape instead of a circular one as on a proper track.  Necessity is the mother of invention....true!  I had auto lap on the Garmin set at 800m and, as well as measuring 800m before starting, I knew to stop when I felt the lap vibration alert on my wrist.....Mmmm, very clever, Norma!

1km warm-up + 2 drills and strides
4:46/5:58mk;     4:45/5:57mk;     4:47/6:00mk;     4:39/5:48mk;     4:26/5:53mk
1km cool-down + stretches.

On Track for 800m

 Those times were OK....just wasn't as easy as on the bitumen roads I've been using till today, but with warmer weather already here, the soccer field and grass surface will be a cooler place to do shorter sessions.

For today....6km

Monday, September 10, 2012

Drills and a Few Little Hills ~~~

It's been a while since I've used the Highlands school soccer field, but I went back there this morning for some cross-training.  The morning was very warm and the thought of removing shoes and socks and working on the soft, cool grass was far more attractive than the hard surface of the roads in the Renwick development where I've been doing just about all my training.

Drills here.....

1 set Magill drills with stride between each......about 50m
4 x 100m strides.

But where was I going to find a hill?  Drills and hills was what I set out to do!  The only thing that vaguely resembled a hill was a short, grassy slope leading from the soccer field to the gymnasium/basketball stadium.  It would have to do;  and anyway, this was not supposed to be a hard session.....that's for tomorrow!

8x6 seconds here!

The grass was such a lovely change from bitumen roads that I'm going to try the soccer field again for tomorrow's track session.  I should be able to find and place some sort of markers around the field and run barefoot on the soft surface for 800m repeats.  I used a make-shift track on the roads so should be able to do the same on grass.  Nothing lost in giving it a try! 

About 40 minutes. 


Sunday, September 09, 2012

Week 1 (of 12)~~~Finished!

Very pleased I waited until today to do my long run, although it seems a little weird to label 8k as 'long'!  Yesterday was so windy, I put off going out until this morning when it was perfect...sunny, very warm and just a slight breeze.

It certainly was different having to run only 8km as a 'long' run, but that's what the program says and that's all I did.  I ran along Diamond Fields Road as a change from the streets in Renwick, but the dirt road is in a woeful condition with stones and rocks waiting to send you flying on your face.  Fear of this happening as it did not long ago, means I ran like I was doing butt kicks to avoid tripping on anything!

My pace, which is the most important element in the three major workouts of the FIRST program, slowed down considerably on the hills;  I think almost 10:00 m/k on the steepest.  In any case, I didn't mind the short distance at all!

Program :  8km @ LT pace (6:45m/k based on my recent 5km time of 31:18)

8km in 57:18
Avg. pace  7:10m/k
7:13;  7:10;  7:09;  7:54;  6:03;  7:06;  7:14;  7:25

Diamond Fields Road 8km.

That's Week 1 done with 11 more to go.  Somewhere towards the end I'll run Fishers Ghost 5km...November, I think and then a track 5000m.

Looked up Fishers Ghost 5km and 10km runs...11th November, 2012.

For the 3 major workouts....20km (I don't include cross-training).

Friday, September 07, 2012

Some Cross-Training ~~~

Another nasty wind blowing today so it was good that I was going to be out for a short time...about 35 minutes :  

Trees gave some shelter from the wind on this long hill.

Starting with a few drills and warm-up jog...
6 x 60sec long hill repeats
Jog down & walk around for a bit and then up again!

Again I didn't know if the hill was steep enough before starting, but 1 x 60 seconds proved long and steep enough to puff me out completely.  Six repeats was quite enough!

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Wild and Windy Tempo Run~~~~~

I didn't stand a chance this morning with Virtual Partner.  He finished 50 metres in front of me; but then he didn't have the wind to contend with as I did.  It was a very wild, windy day here and in some sections I could feel the wind moving me sideways which wasn't the way I wanted to go at all!

Program :
1.5km easy
3.5km @ 6:26m/k
1.5km easy.

The warm-up and cool-down were OK but the middle 3.5kms were a real struggle against the elements which gave VP a good start and he never wavered at all, while I finished with nothing but a headache to show for my effort!

3.5km in 23 minutes
6:44;   6:42;   6:18;   +  3:43 (0.5)
Avg. Pace 6:33m/k

6.5km today.

"She beat me!"....Westies Joggers 5km 2/9/12 (70+)

....but no hard feelings!

Wednesday, September 05, 2012

It is a Very Good Year.... 83rd year today and I'm thinking about the lyrics of a song..."It Was a Very Good Year". I can say all my years, the Autumn years and even the few sad ones, have been very good years.

Written by ervin drake; sung by Robbie Williams....the last verse~~~~~

"But now the days are short, I'm in the  
Autumn of the year  
And now I think of my life as vintage  
Wine from fine old kegs
From the brim to the dregs. it poured
Sweet and clear. It was a very good year."

Birthday or no birthday, I was out early for Cross-training : Drills & Short Hills.

1 set Magill drills with stride between each.
10 x short, steep hill reps (about 40m)
Altogether about 35-40 minutes.

I thought, when I began the hill reps, that it mightn't be steep enough;  by the time I reached ten I was sure it was more than sufficient!

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

5km Program Starts Today! ~~~

The FIRST 5km program is for 12 weeks and I began with a 'track' session this morning.  As in the half marathon program, there are three key workouts : Tuesday, track;  Thursday, tempo run;  Saturday, long run and cross-training on other days.  With cross-training, I plan one day for drills and short hill repeats, another day for long hill repeats and a third day for......I don't know what!  Some easy running perhaps.  Sunday is definitely a day off.

Program :  Week 1, Day 1!
10-20 min warm-up
8 x 400m 2:21/5:52mk
400m RI
10 min cool-down.

Off to Renwick to set up a street/ usual!
1km warm-up & strides.

400m street/track.

 8 x 400m  :
2:20/5:50;  2:18/5:46;  2:15/5:39;  2:16/5:41;  2:15/5:38;  2:16/5:41;  2:16/5:40;  2:12/5:30

About 300m RI jog to the start after each 400m
1km cool-down + stretches.

There was nothing too difficult with this session;  much like track training in the half marathon program.  The morning was unusually hot though and a head wind on the last part of the 'track'.  

I'm looking forward to starting this new and different type of training...change is as good as a they say!  Keeps interest and motivation going for sure, with a goal to try a 5km track race later in the year.  I'm on my way!

5.2km today.

Sunday, September 02, 2012

Westies Joggers 5km ~~~~~

5km Course
I had a surprisingly good run today!  Surprising, because I've been training for the past 36 weeks and running half marathons only.  The last 5km I ran was Fishers Ghost in November last year when I thought I ran an amazing(ahem!) time of 33:33 and training has been based on that 5km time, on which  FIRST base all their programs ....our most recent 5km time.

Now that I'm about to begin the FIRST 5km program - with a view to trying that distance on the track in Canberra later this year, I will now have to upgrade myself!  Drum Roll!

6am start from Mittagong; time for a warm-up , a few drills and strides and at 7:50 we were off.  I ran fairly hard but nothing uncomfortable -  I just wanted to see what I could do without being over-zealous!  I didn't stop, as did others, at drink stations.  Why would anyone need to drink in such a short distance?  I suppose they have their reasons, but I never bother if it's under 20km.

I ran the 5km event in 31 minutes 18 secondsFirst place W70 & over!

I was thrilled!  Felt fine all the way, even on the couple of hills I barely slowed down.

Splits  :  6:13.9;     6:37.3;     6:11.3;     6:08.3;    5:53.3

Avg. Pace :  6:13m/k
"She beat me!"  I did, by about 7 minutes~  70+ category hard feelings!

 Now I can begin the FIRST 5km program with renewed enthusiasm and learn how to become a good 5km runner!

For the week  :  30.6km