Two Fruits

Friday, November 30, 2007

The Girl Cyclist & Missy

Distance: 21.7 km
Time: 1 hr 53 mins 44 secs
Rate: 5' 14" per km
Weather: cloudy, temp 20 degrees, wind calm, humidity 60%
Week: 64.45 km
November: 405.95 km
Running days: 23 / 30
Ave: 17.65 km per run day
Year: 4018.25 km

The title of today's story could have been any one of many. I could have waffled on about going past 4000 kms for the year or exceeding 400 kms for the month. I could have given Ewen a rap for going out after 6:00pm tonight just as it started to rain. I could have even been self indulgent and said that my picture is in the latest edition of R4YL magazine. Or I ran to the top of Mt Taylor for the umpteenth time. All impressive, but...
My faith in the younger generation has been restored, at least some of them. Mostly, they hang around the town centres with little to do but cause trouble, start fights or intimidate the oldies, they seem to have a little regard for others.
Today, I stated from work, around the outside of Lake Tuggeranong on Cate's side, then up Athllon Dr towards the roundabout at Sulwood Dr. I must say, I was going well at this early stage, even with the gradual up hill all the way from the lake. I looked ahead after crossing Sulwood Dr and saw a young girl in front with a very nice racing bike stopped while she talked on a mobile phone. You know, can't go 10 minutes without talking to a friend. Got a bit closer and saw a young boxer dog running around, sniffing and generally being friendly and presumed both belonged together. Continued on the road towards the horse paddocks as I intended to go to the top of Mt Taylor. Doggie started to follow me, so I stopped hoping Missy( name on collar)would go back to the girl with the mobile phone and bicycle.
After a short while she rode up the road to get Missy and I stopped for a chat. Seems Missy had escaped from home in Mawson and was out for some self imposed exercise. Girl cyclist had phoned a number on Missy's collar and told the owner that Missy was out and she was waiting with her until some one came to collect. We had quick chat about what both of us was doing, my mountain running and she is a pursuit track rider, fast over 200o metres for the under age competitors with state and national titles on in December and January. She was out on a 60 km bike ride and had stopped to make sure Missy was going to make it home safely. Missy was getting tired at this stage, looking for a drink and a rest. Girl cyclist had Missy under control and would look after her until the owner turned up.
She would have lost well over an hour out of her riding time to take care of Missy, most would have ridden past and not cared. Well done girl cyclist, I hope you do well at the upcoming titles.
Sometimes inspiration comes from a small incident, I scooted up the mountain, back down at some pace to find girl cyclist and Missy had gone, probably never to be seen my me again.
Back down Athllon Dr all the way to the depot, stopped for a drink then continued down to Pine Is to stand in the river and relax. The legs needed a rest, but after 15 minutes half a dozen of those other teenagers, now with nothing to do with school nearly finished, turned up. Out of the water and back to work.
I had a good day out, solid run and met someone willing to sacrifice a little to help others.

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Blue Tongue

Distance: 14.35 km
Time: 80' 44"
Rate: 5' 37" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 25 degrees, humidity 50%, wind calm
Week: 42.75 km
November: 384.25 km
Year: 3996.55 km

I don't have a blue tongue but the lizard certainly does. Started from work down to Pine Is, then followed the track beside the river past Tuggie Creek out to Red Rocks gorge gate. Rested for a bit then returned the same way to Pine Is beach. Stood in the water for a while and trotted back to the depot. A really nice morning, warm and sunny and that is why the blue tongue lizard was just waiting and watching in the middle of the track as I approached. It always gives a bit of a fright to see something in front of you, ans as you get closer, you start looking for legs. Always a bit safer then. Lizard was not going to move until I decided which side I was going.
Two things to think about now that the grass has grown very quickly recently, holes on the tracks, mostly wombats digging, and snakes. Mostly I run where few others go, so if something happens, I may just have a long wait to be found.
Nice day out today, good steady run on an undulating and interesting track near the river. Quads a bit heavy after yesterday on the bike, but OK after a few kms. The water level in the river has certainly risen in the last few days and cooled down a bit as well. Very good for recovery.

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

Mountain Bike Ride

Distance: 22.6 km
Time: 90 minutes:
Pace: 15 kmph
Weather: cloudy, mild, temp 20 degrees, wind calm, humidity 60%

The "boot camp" riders from work had left before I was back in the depot this morning, so I went out on my own. I had planned to go for a short run, but changed my mind when the weather turned out to be a bit average.
The course turned out to be a bit hilly, not a rest day easy ride just for fun, and a bit of effort was required. From work, up Erindale Dr, crossing over Sulwood and onto Farrer Ridge. Followed the arrows from the Triple Tri course and went under Yamba Dr and into Isaacs. Over Long Gully Rd to Wanniassa Hills nature park on the track reconstructed and partly sealed after some clearing for fire trail access. It has taken away the niceness of the area, but I suppose it is needed when fires do come along.
Followed the track past the back of Karralika to MacArthur, over to Fadden Pines, and down Isabella Dr back to work. Enjoyable ride, bit rocky and rough in places, and it showed up the need to replace the tyres on the bike with some better off road ones for better grip on loose surfaces. A couple of times the back started to skid when the brakes were applied and I found myself heading for the edge.
I told Sue, captain of the Triple Tri team from a couple of weekends ago, that I may have a go at an off road duathlon next winter. That means the upgrade to the mtn bike, and much more practice on my bike riding skills. Should be fun, and the cross training benefits will definitely help my running. I can notice the difference already from a few longer rides with the guys from work, plus I ride to and from work each day as well, three weeks in four.
Just need to stay on the bike and not " do a CJ" or now, " do a Strewth" Have fun everyone.

Monday, November 26, 2007

Monday, Monday

Distance: 15.15 km
Time: 82' 21"
Rate: 5' 26" per km
Weather: sunny with clouds building, temp 23 degrees, humidity 50%, wind calm
Week: 28.4 km
November: 369.9 km
Year: 3982.2 km

Always make the most of your opportunities. I try to make Mondays a rest day especially when there has been a race on the Sunday, but sometimes the week ahead does not look good for spare time to go running during the day. This week looks like it may be a case of do it when you can.
Even though there was a 31 km on Sat and race plus extra on Sunday for 13 km, today felt reasonably good and easy. It was more of a chance to get some cold water on tired muscles to aid recovery and prevent injury ( I think of Strewth, injury out of nothing).
Took it really easy from work down around the river area, out on the gravel track behind Bonython for a little extra speed, but basically just a gentle jog. Nice day, a few people about at the river enjoying the sunshine, plus a couple of dogs loose where they should not have been. There is a dedicated dog area at Point Hut.
Gee, I wasn't happy about the mountain bikes yesterday and dogs loose in the wrong place today. Must be (or am) old and cranky.

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Vet's Handicap - Innabaanya

Run total: Distance: 13.25 km
Race: Distance: 7.0 km
Time: 30' 43"
Rate: 4' 22" per km
Finished: 64th
Warm up and cool down: Distance: 6.25 km
Weather: cloudy, temp 18 degrees, humidity 60%, wind calm
Week: 13.25 km
November: 354.75 km
Year: 3967.05 km

Not sure, again how I would go, nothing to gain this year after I won the overall points score last year. Too far behind with some average efforts through the winter this year.
Low clouds on the drive to the course had a few spots of drizzle on the windscreen, but the day did improve. The sun started to appear about half way through the race, and the humidity then became noticeably. A change in the course from last year's two loops and a reduction in distance by one km to 7 km, I think was for the good. A few comments afterwards were positive. The mountain bike riders around during the run are in a world of their own, as if we were invading their territory. Even at that start with runners waiting to start in a narrow area, a couple of bikers decided to come straight through the middle of the group. There are plenty of tracks for them to use. Fairly ignorant I think, if that had been one of us when their events are on we would have been moved on very quickly, and told so as well.
Ran OK today, about position 90 at half way, picked up the pace on the way back to finish 64th. That should mean no change to my group start of 38 for next year.
Strewth missed the run with her hammy injury, CJ is still off the scene. Speedygeoff is also off nursing an injury. What has happened? Ewen finished 3rd, well done!!
A sausage in bread, couple of light beers during the presentations topped off a good morning. Need to do some gardening this afternoon and mow the grass, then a snooze on the couch watching the golf. Hope the name sake comes good a knocks in a few birdies.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Not Much Fun

Distance: 31.4 km
Time: 3 hrs 3 mins 28 secs
Rate: 5' 50" per km
Weather: cloudy, temp 16-18 degrees, humidity 70%, light east breeze
Week: Dist: 100.2 km - 5 days = 20.04 km per run day
November: 341.5 km - 19 days = 17.97 km per run day
Year: 3953.8 km - 217 days = 18.22 km per run day
Since Dec ' 05: 8091.55 km - 748 hrs 13 mins 39 secs = ave 5' 32" per km
Calories burned: 615,395

Went to Molonglo reach this morning for the group run starting just after 7: 30 am. Fairly average day in most respects, just could not get into any rhythm, a real struggle all the way. Always had in mind that I needed to do over 31 km to reach 100km for the week, but really could and should have turned back after 10 km and went home.
I left the group at the horse stile behind Campbell Park offices, over to the saddle and on to the reservoir up from Hackett houses. Down the road to the zig zag track leading to the top of Mt Majura, turned at the 4 ways corner half way up, down the Two Peaks course to the track leading back to Ainslie. Picked up the power lines track behind the mountain, on to Campbell High school, down Anzac Parade to LBG, over to Commonwealth Ave bridge, along the edge of the lake past the High Court to Kings Ave bridge, and back to the car park. Still needed another 3 km so headed to the wetlands car park and back.
Now I know why I don't run road marathons, half marathons or 10 km fun runs, those concrete bike paths are just too hard to run on. Really, a recipe for injury, not needed when there are so many other off road places to go without having also to dodge and weave around bicycles and people walking their pets.
Last vet's handicap tomorrow, so may just trot along at the back and try not to finish last, nothing to gain at all, no trophies this year, just enjoy the post run celebrations, a couple of drinks and a sausage sizzle.

Friday, November 23, 2007

What a Difference a Day Makes

Distance: 14.2 km
Time: 71' 50"
Rate: 5' 03" per km
Weather: cloudy, light drizzle at times, temp 15 degrees, humidity 80%, sthy wind at 13 kmph
Week: 68.8 km
November: 310.1 km
Year: 3922.4 km

Two day ago I went to the oval for a few laps on a beaut spring day, 27 degrees, sunny, no wind. Yesterday, the guys from work were going bike riding, but the rain put an end to that, so no run and no ride. That then counts as a rest day, and at my old age, any rest day is appreciated.
Today, whatever the weather, a run was on. A light drizzle wasn't going to stop this duck going out in the elements. Fortunately it wasn't cold, and it was always going to be fairly flat and easy. A simple circuit run down to Point Hut, along the river track to Pine Is and back home. Not much to report about the run, hardly any one about, no wildlife, a few maggies making a noise.
Long run from Molonglo tomorrow morning, just need to run over 31.2 km to reach 100km for the week.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Calwell Oval - In Ewen's Footsteps

Distance: 15.5 km
Time: 72' 32"
Rate: 4' 41" per km
Weather: sunny, light high cloud, temp 27 degrees, humidity 45%, NW breeze under 10 kmph
Week: 54.6 km
November: 295.9 km
Year: 3908.2 km

Not quite in Ewen's footprints because I ran in lane 3. However, after running past the oval yesterday, I decided I need to run a little faster than my usual slow pace. Beaut day in Canberra this morning, oval vacant, although a couple of vet's were finishing their sprint training when I arrived.
After a couple of warm up laps and a stretch, I ran in lane 3, seemed to be the best of the lanes, lane 1 always gets used so I stayed away, and Ewen's lane 6 seemed so far away.
Thirty laps broken up into 3 x 10 laps with a short stop for a drink after each 10 laps. By my GPS, 5 laps of lane 3 measures 2.15km, I ran times of 9'52", 9'57", 10'00", 9'59", 9'59", 9' 49" to ave 4' 37" per km.
Also to prevent any chance of repetitive injury, I changed direction after 20 laps. That's not fast but is is consistent, and that's all I was looking for. No sprint left in my legs any more.
Very nice day, a good change to run flat instead of looking at hills all the time. Hills come back seriously in Jan and Feb ready for SFT.

Tuesday, November 20, 2007

Run to Boot Camp

Distance: 20.35 km
Time: 1 hr 52 mins 13 secs
Rate: 5' 31" per km
Weather: sunny, very warm, temp 25-30 degrees, humidity 35%, NW wind at 10 kmph
Week: 39.1 km
November: 280.4 km
Year: 3892.7 km

I am on afternoon/night shift at work so I ran from home this morning with the intention of catching up with the guys from work on the morning boot camp mtn bike ride. I left home just on 10 am heading down Johnson Dr past Calwell shops to the oval. Thought about stopping there and just doing some easy laps, no one around and the grass had recently been cut. Would have been nice to stay but I decided to keep going so I headed around the back of Theodore to the sub station, around the back of Tuggy Hill to Lanyon shops, past the Gordon Primary school to the Gordon playground where the rocket is set to take off.
Found 6 highly toned and motivated bus driver's really into the boot camp activities, well really just standing around taking it easy, as bus drivers do. After a few chin ups, sit ups, walking the steel rope, down the slippery slide and a few goes on the flying fox, they mounted the bikes and off they went, no great pace about them at all. Thursday morning the A team go out, much more pace and motivation, but at least today's group were out doing something and having fun.
I continued on going the same tracks as the bike riders had come, over to Point Hut, along the river track to Pine Is south car park. I stopped for a quick dip in the river to wash off the dust and sweat, then cut through to Bonython houses, and the track to Woodcock Dr and up Johnson Dr back home. One small brown snake about a metre long on the track near the river, must have known I was close because he was fast moving out of sight. Just happy we didn't get too close to each other.
Another excellent day out, warm but not too hot, managed to drink 2 x 600 ml bottles of water, the run was good, felt OK all the way without pushing any pace. Seemed to recovered from the Triple Tri run last Sunday.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

Triple Tri - Mtn Run Leg

Distance: 18.75 km
Time: 1 hr 44 mins 11 secs
Rate: 5' 33" per km
Weather: very warm, sunny, temp 22-27 degrees, humidity 30%, wind calm
Week: 18.75 km
November: 260.05 km
Year: 3872.35 km

Somehow a couple of months ago I got conned into running the Mt Majura/Mt Ainslie leg in the Sri Chinmoy Triple Tri. I have ran it before and know the tracks well as we use it a part of the training for Six Foot Track. That doesn't make it any easier, in fact ran the same trails almost last weekend on the Two Peaks run over 26 km. Last week was cloudy,temp 15 degrees, and humid. Today, sunny, temp much higher with low humidity. Today's conditions suit me much better. The organisers did a very good job with plenty of drinks station along the course.
I started out just after 9:10 am after Bob had a very good ride on the mountain bike leg from Belconnen. I passed the first of about 6 or 7 runners early on, asked her if she had run the course before, she hadn't, was just following the arrows on the ground. The course was well marked, no chance of going astray as long as you were concentrating.
Walked a short section of really rocky track on the first part of Mt Majura but that was all for the run. I passed a solo runner near the top of Mt Majura taking it easy, he had a long day in front of him. After last week complaining of not being able to run the down hill at any pace, finally found some good sub 4 minute pace on the road section off the top of Majura. The pines section off Majura is mainly mtn bike tracks, very technical, would be good on a bike, great fun to run, talked to Maria afterwards, she's however is not a fan, I loved it.
The shade disappears on the section between the two mountains, the saddle and power lines are open and exposed, the UV's from the sun started to burn. The shade return on the climb up Mt Ainslie, ran this part well but by the time I touched the tower on top of Mt Ainslie the km rate had topped out at a bit over 6'00" mins per km pace. Not looking too good to get under the 1 hr 50 mins I had predicted.
Found some more of the down hill pace and almost flew off the mountain, if I had wings I would have been airborne. This is great stuff, but you need either youthful kamikaze no fear or an ounce of self confidence. Felt really good through the War Memorial and down Anzac Parade towards the edge of LBG. The distance covered according to the GPS showed it was not going to be close to the 20 km as quoted by the organisers, but the time was now going to be close to my predicted vague estimate.
Finished off strongly along the edge of the lake to get in a few minutes earlier than expected. Great day, loved it, ran well for a team of athletes all giving their best. Spent a bit of time in the lake afterwards washing off the sweat and cooling down. The lake was closed during the week,reopened on Friday, but still would not want to drink from it.
Many thanks to Sue and Steve for allowing me to be part of the team. I will publish this post then head out to catch up with those still out there. I hope they have as good a day as I did.

Saturday, November 17, 2007

The Saturday Waiting Game

Distance: 15.2 km
Time: 83' 05"
Rate: 5' 27" per km
Weather: very warm, sunny, temp 28 degrees, humidity 35%, wind NW at 15kmph
Week: 95.75 km
November: 241.3 km
Year: 3853.6 km

Left a hour too late to get a run in before the heat and humidity made running a little difficult. Decided not to go to Molonglo just in case a speedster decided to climb a mountain or two or try to break the 4 minute mile. Triple Tri in the same area tomorrow, so I slept in a ran from home. I don't usually do out and back training runs but I did today over to Theodore and back on the track behind the houses, past the sub station for about a km or so. GPS said 7.6km so I turned and returned the same way where the little kids at the oval had finally packed up after their Little Athletics meet.
The wind started to blow a bit against on the way home and it is more down hill, but I managed to take about 2 minutes off the out time. Probably, I had had enough by the time I arrived home, the humidity was getting higher with a few clouds rolling in, may get a storm tonight.

Friday, November 16, 2007

Around in Circles

Distance: 24.0 km
Time: 2 hrs 16 mins 37 secs
Rate: 5' 41" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 21-29 degrees, humidity 20%, wind calm
Week: 80.55 km
November: 226.1 km
Year: 3838.4 km

With Triple Tri on Sunday, although only 20 km over Mt Majura and Mt Ainslie, I decided to " do it for the team". I sacrificed a long run on Saturday for a short, flat 24 km today, but I would have done up to 18 km today anyway.
Another perfect day, a bit warm this morning but Sunday's weather forecast is similar so, get used to it and don't complain. Just carry enough to drink and replenish on the way. Started out from work, down around the river, up to the top of Stranger Hill behind Bonython, back to Pine Is, continue out to Tuggie Creek, and back to Pine Is beach. First stop for quick dip in the river, continue back towards Bonython houses and back to the beach for second dip in the water. It is a training run, no prizes for being a hero today, try to keep up with the drinking, run relaxed and enjoy the day. Last short section back to work. In fact they second half or the whole run was much better than the first, may have been a bit of tiredness from the bike ride and run yesterday.
Still a good effort, out well over two hours, November run total also well over 200 kms by half way through the month.
Not quite a rest day tomorrow, but an easy 15 km should be OK before Sunday. See, I am sacrificing , the team comes first.

Thursday, November 15, 2007

I Did a CJ - Spectacular

Bike Ride: Distance: 29 km - Time: 1 hr 59 mins - Rate: 14.7 kmph
Run: Distance: 9.3 km - Time: 48' 41" - Rate: 5' 13" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 22-29 degrees, humidity 25%, wind calm
Week; 56.55 km
November: 202.1 km
Year: 3814.4 km

More on the title later. Yesterday I noted that the good mtn bike riders from work go out for a more adventurous ride on Thursdays and after no thought at all, I decided to join them.The other option, 10 x 1km intervals. Most including myself have a part in the same team at the Triple Tri on Sunday, so today was a good last hit out. The group of 5 of us, 2 Steves, 1 Kevin, 1 David and 1 Bob set out from the depot and on the dirt wherever possible all day, followed Isabella Dr up to MacArthur, over to Gilmore behind the houses on a good dirt track, picking up a fair pace in places. Unfortunately the good open track disappeared for a while and while trying to navigate through the long grass, a big hole jumped and grabbed me, stopped the bike in it's tracks and I kept going....... over the handle bars, through the air without a parachute and I landed luckily on some soft grass gazing at the sky. What happened, the others didn't have to ask as they all saw the me, and so now does everyone else at work. No pictures, no damage to me or the bike, just a dent in the ego and pride.
It didn't stop a great day as we kept going from Gilmore down to Calwell oval, up Tharwa Dr to Gordon, down Woodcock Dr to the dog exercise area, along the river track from Point Hut to Pine Is. We really liked finding and riding on narrow soft single tracks and the river area is great for that. After Pine Is we made our way past the archery targets behind Centrelink building over to Tuggie Creek going through at the 4WD crossing. Up to the wooden bridge and down Athllon Dr to the depot. The others went off to recover but I still had a bit a couple of hours to fill in so ..... I went for a run.
As much as the bike ride is so much fun and excellent cross training or getting back after time off, CJ , great idea, I still need to run. A short run just on some of the usual tracks where we rode, over to the back of Bonython, the river track, stop for a swim at Pine Is beach to wash off sweat and dust, and back to work.
An absolutely brilliant day out, great ride with the guys from work, a good solid run, a swim, time for a shower and the rest of lunch between having to earn a living. Even that was good today. Doesn't get much better than today, except maybe 35- 50 km run on a Saturday, company is always nice.
Longer run on Friday, short easy run on Saturday and then Mt Majura and Mt Ainslie in Triple Tri on Sunday.

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

The Golfers were playing Golf

Distance: 21.15 km
Time: 2hrs 2mins 51 secs
Rate: 5' 48" per km
Weather: warm, temp 27 degrees, humidity 40%, wind light NW
Week: 47.25 km
November: 192.8 km
Year: 3805.1 km

It was disappointing to miss yesterday'" Boot Camp" ride with the guys and girls from work, sound like they had a really good day out, a few hills and plenty of fun. If the " a graders" go out tomorrow I may join in, but I probably need to do some 1 km intervals on the dirt track behind Bonython instead.
Today was another perfect day in paradise in the nation's capital. Nice sunny day, little wind, warm enough and plenty of time to get a solid run done. Started out down to Pine Is, over to the bridge over Tuggie Creek, up the steep track past Black Sally's on the back of Urambi Hill and reached Gleneagles lightly buggered. I took a 600 ml bottle of water and half had gone in 8 kms. None the less, a chance to run is not let go, so I headed past the golfers at Murrumbidge enjoying their frustrating day playing hit and " try to find" golf ball, lost in the dam, over to Kambah Pool Road. Finally found some rhythm on the downhill to the river. Not enough time to check out the nudist beach although there were a few cars about and no doubt the sausage sizzle was doing a brisk trade.
Back along the track above the river, past Red Rocks Gorge and the kookaburra gate to Tuggie Creek, then on to Pine Is beach. This is an open public beach, mid week, few people about, not much happening. Stopped to have a swim and rest and finally made it back to work.
Not very quick, but that climb up the back of Urambi is very steep and getting rough. The warm day didn't help but you must get used to that as any day time event can throw up conditions like today and hotter. Certainly had no water left when I reached a tap at Pine Is. Still a very enjoyable run.

Tuesday, November 13, 2007

Out of Time but not Out of Sight

Distance: 9.8 km
Time: 49' 52"
Rate: 5' 05" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 27 degrees, humidity 50%, wind calm
Week: 26.1 km
November: 171.65 km
Year: 3783.95 km

Big day today with lots to do and not much spare time. A split shift is always good with 4 plus hours off in the middle of the day to do or not to do. Except when you have to attend a meeting about the next bus network at MacArthur House north of the city. Travelling and meeting time squeezes any spare time available. Not running yesterday caused a few anxious moments working out when and where to go running today. Split shifts also mean early start, 7:30am and late finish 7:30pm. I don't like running much outside of either of these times.
However, to get around all these small problems, I spread lunch out over the whole day, managed to get just an hour in to go for a run, flattish on the tracks by the river, a quick dip in the mighty Murrumbidgee and somehow get back behind the wheel on time.
Today was just ideal outside, shame about the available time to enjoy it properly, but that's life. Just hope everyone turns up for work tomorrow, I have nothing to do and I get hours off to do what I want. Dreaming!!

Sunday, November 11, 2007

Relaxed Recovery

Distance: 16.3 km
Time: 85' 05"
Rate: 5' 13" per km
Weather: beaut, sunny, temp 19 degrees, humidity 60%, wind calm
Week: 16.3 km
November: 161.85 km
Year: 3774.15 km

Just a perfect day for a recovery after yesterday's hills. Early this morning low cloud had thoughts of another wasted Sunday running wise. However by 9:00am sunny blue skies prevailed and it is now just about spot on.
I didn't do all the right things yesterday to recover properly so I was not sure how today would go.
Started out at a jog down Johnson Dr and Woodcock Dr heading to Point Hut and felt OK. Along the river track, nice soft sand and dirt, no one else in sight and for once no wind. Past Pine Is and up to the top car park , then returned to the beach.
The scenery improved dramatically here, so I stayed a while to soak the legs in the cool water before heading back along the river track, up through the dog exercise area and back home.
Good solid run, nice day, pleasure to be out and about.
There is a discussion topic on cool running about the need to have rest days. Interesting to hear how others manage to run and rest, and not get sick or injured, or do they?

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Two Peaks - Ainslie and Majura

Distance: 26.0 km
Time: 2hrs 16 mins 53 secs
Rate: 5' 17" per km
Weather: cloudy, temp range 10-14 degrees, humidity 70%, wind calm
Distance: 110.5 km
Running days: 6/7
Ave: 18.4 km per run day
Distance: 145.55 km
Running days: 8/10
Ave: 18.19 km per run day
Distance: 3757.85 km
Running days: 206/314
Ave: 18.24 km per run day

The annual Two Peaks event held today from Majura Winery over Mt Ainslie and Mt Majura. Rain fell last night as it has almost all week making the tracks softer but very nice to run on. Very early start of 6:30 as usual at this time of the year, however it was cool and conditions were good. In fact both male and female records were broken in the shorter One Peak event of 15 km over Mt Majura.
I ran just over 2 minutes slower than last year, but many others were slower as well with the winners well outside the race records. I ran alright for the first 10 km through Majura Pines and the Campbell Park side of Mt Ainslie, even going OK up the front of Mt Ainslie until I reached those steps near the top. They are just a bit too high and too far apart for me to run.
Off the top of Ainslie and down to Hackett and Watson, I stayed in sight of a couple of runners who were not getting away, but after reaching the drink station near Prime TV and starting a long climb up Mt Majura, I lost sight of them.
Ran up Mt Majura reasonably well except for a short rocky section just after going over the fence and onto the mountain proper. Reached the top still going OK but the lack of leg speed really showed down the road. Just unable to maintain 4:00 per km. This area needs serious looking at in the near future, I will have to join Ewen at the oval to regain something I probably never had in the first place anyway.
Finished feeling OK, no damage although the legs need a rest, the rest of me is fine, except the brain, must be mad. Received the finishers bottle of wine, a 2007 bottle of Riesling, but not being a wine drinker that will stay in the cupboard for a few years then go into a cake no doubt.
Good to see a few BC & BHC runner fronting up only 3 weeks after a big run.
Another run next weekend over the same mountains as part of a relay team in the Triple Tri, another fun day as it's only 20 km this time.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Friday Jog

Distance: 13.0 km
Time: 69' 25"
Rate: 5' 20" per km
Weather: cloudy, temp 15 degrees, humidity 60%, wind calm (almost)
Week: 84.5 km
November: 119.55 km
Year: 3731.85 km

Finally the wind eased, no sun but better than the last few days. Short and easy today, just 13 km on as flat a course as I could find from work. Around the back of Bonython, over to Point Hut, along the river to Pine Is, up to the top car park and back to the beach. Stand in the water, which is slowly rising at last, for 15 minutes, then back to work.
Pouring with rain as I finished work tonight so didn't ride the bike home, not taking any chances to come to grief as there is too much happening until the end of the year. Hopefully tomorrow morning will be sunny and dry for the Two Peaks run.

Thursday, November 8, 2007

Boot Camp - Week 2

Mountain Bike Ride: Distance 19.8 km
Weather: cloudy, temp 15 degrees, humidity 60%, wind light SE at 15 kmph

The group from work had a bike ride and workout session planned for today as Tuesday's effort was delayed because of a horse race. Six of us toed the line this morning after morning tea, this time a Garry ( part way), a Kevin, a Dave, a Bob, a Keith and myself. Novices' all of us really except Bob who has some experience.
We left the depot for Pine Is and the track beside the river to Point Hut. The recent rain has improved the surface but it is still rocky making the riding along here a lot of fun. Garry left us there and we again went over to the playground at Gordon where ex gym instructor Kevin put us through the paces. Warm up with sit ups, chin ups, push ups, then the flying fox a few times, the monkey bars a few times, more chin ups, the slippery slide, walk the steel rope a couple of times.
Back on the bikes and past Lanyon shops to the base track around Tuggie Hill. We pushed the bikes up a few steep slopes to reach the tracks where the view over the valley towards the Brinabellas is quite magnificent.
Naturally with me in the pack we can't go too far without a hill or three, Keith swore and cursed all the way, but that was to be expected. Finally found some flattish tracks from the sub station behind Theodore back to Tharwa Dr, built up some speed off Fidge St, bit scary for me at 50 kmph, don't want to "do a CJ" with others watching.
Made it back to work after 2 hours of great fun, shower and lunch and a good chat about the adventure. The cricket was on as well, Aussie's batting and going well. Great day, very enjoyable to be able to get out doing something different with a group of equal ability.
I had planned to go to the track at AIS tonight but finished work too late, and I did enough cross training today anyway. We could do with a few more degrees of warmth, a few less clouds and no wind, would have been perfect. Easy day tomorrow, may do a couple of kms if I get the chance, Two Peaks run from Majura winery on Saturday morning, should be good.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Just Another Big Circle

Distance: 17.9 km
Time: 1 hr 41 mins 9 secs
Rate: 5' 39" per km
Weather: cloudy, temp 14 degrees, humidity 60%, wind SE about 15 kmph
Week: 71.5 km
November: 106.55 km
Year: 3718.85 km

The problem with too much time to fill in, is it too easy to want to go on a long run all the time. Sometimes, a short run at a faster pace would have been more beneficial. However, to rebuild a base, slow distance with a rest or two is the way to go. Plenty of time today, so I did the full circuit of Urambi Hills without going to the top, that hilly part was done last Saturday on Majura and yesterday on Black Mtn.
As well, there is an open paddock, slightly downhill on the river side of Urambi where a bit a speed work can be done. Especially if the cattle are interested in the passing parade or the maggies are paying attention. Just need to watch the places you put your feet if the cattle have been passing through recently leaving evidence of their presence.
Started out feeling a bit sluggish, probably from yesterday's run, picked up a bit in the middle section on the way back to Pine Is, felt terrible pushing into the SE wind a bit further on and OK nearing the end.
I had a bit to eat before I went out, but after an hour started to get hungry. The canteen would have been closed at work by the time I got back, but luckily the door was still open, so I finished up with a couple of the best, freshest bread rolls and honey I have had for a long time. Pity I had eaten the banana before I went out.
Also cleaned out the rest of the contents of the esky fairly quickly as well. There is always a lesson to be remembered from these small events. Lots of exercise requires fuel, cut back at your peril, something will suffer. But, cut the exercise, cut back the calories.
Probably need a rest day, but I would like to get to the track on Thursday night if I finish work early enough. Rest day Friday, Two Peaks on Saturday.

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Tuesday Group Run

Distance: 21.85 km
Time: 2hrs 4 mins 27 secs
Rate: 5' 42" per km
Weather: cloudy, temp 10 degrees, humidity 60%, wind SE at 20 kmph
Week: 53.6 km
November: 88.65 km
Year: 3700.95 km

Melbourne Cup day with a public holiday for ACT meant few cars on the road but a good gathering of runners & walkers at Black Mountain peninsular for the weekly group run. I started early at 8:10 am and headed off towards the Botanical Gardens to the top of Black Mountain. Down the back tracks towards Caswell Dr and Rani Road, then over to the cork plantation. Up gun barrel then past the arboretum to Dairy Farmer's Hill. Stopped to have a look around before continuing through the slow growing pines to the power lines. Sharp left back past the National Zoo to the cork plantation and the edge of LBG to the start.
Easterly wind was cool as was the temp so any shelter was appreciated. This run was very similar to the Tuesday runs we did as training for SFT a couple of years ago with Elizabeth and John. I still think it is very good mid week training with steep up hill and very fast runable down hill. Both required at SFT.
Going now to Melbourne Cup luncheon, so happy punting.

Monday, November 5, 2007

Woden in Spring

Distance: 10.7 km
Time: 54' 14"
Rate: 5' 04" per km
Weather: cool, temp 15 degrees, cloudy, humidity 50%, wind strong southerly at 30 kmph
Week: 31.75 km
November: 66.8 km
Year: 3679.1 km

Lunch break in Woden today so just enough time for a run. From bus interchange down to Hindmarsh Dr, right turn up to Tuggie Parkway, up track on Oakey Hill used for vet's handicap to electricity sub station. Cross over to vet's other course going down past horse paddocks to Cotter Road. Go past north Curtin oval then follow drain back to Woden town centre.
Pushed for time so tried to push the pace but the southerly wind on the way back did no favours. Still a reasonable run on not much of a day, distance a bit short but the best that was possible.

Sunday, November 4, 2007

Backing Up on Sunday

Distance: 21.05 km
Time: 2 hrs 3 mins 16 secs
Rate: 5' 51" per km
Weather: cool, temp 14 degrees, cloudy, humidity 60%, wind strong NW up to 40 kmph
Week: 21.05 km
November: 56.1 km
Distance: 3668.4 km
Running days: 201 / 308
Ave: 18.25 km per run day

Yesterday was a hilly run over Mt Majura so I thought I would just find out where I am at in the recovery department. A back up run after yesterday was almost not going to happen with the rain, thunder and lightning last night. However, today although cloudy and windy is fine.
Without going down by the river too often, it is difficult to find a flat off road course to run from home. Anyway, I went over to Gowrie and onto Wanniassa Hills, under Yamba Dr to Farrer ridge and followed the now disused vet's handicap course to Isaacs. Crossed over Long Gully road to the open paddocks on the eastern side of Wanniassa Hills to come out where the reservoir is behind MacArthur. There is a now sealed track on the top of Wanniassa Hills upgraded for bush fire protection, but it has ruined the area from a running point of view. Finally headed down Isabella Dr past Fadden Pines back to Ashley Dr and home.
Very few people out today compared with yesterday, cool day and windy I suspect.
Run went well, the backing up was not a problem.I now know that in two weeks time I can have a run on Saturday morning and then do the Majura/Ainslie leg of the Triple Tri on Sunday. Probably keep the Saturday run down to 25 km and flat(ish).
Two weeks after Brindabella Classic, the recovery is complete so I can concentrate on the last part of the year.
My mother-in-law has moved in with us from Tassie, arrived about a month ago, hoping to get a knee replacement some time soon. However, other health problems not helped by smoking, are of concern so the operation may not proceed.
Either way, she may well be here for a least another 6 months, maybe longer, maybe until the candle finally goes out. Opportunity to run long and often, you bet.

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Back to Molonglo

Distance: 20.25 km
Time: 2 hrs 8 mins 3 secs
Rate: 6' 19" per km
Weather: cloudy, temp 15 degrees, wind calm, humidity 80%
Distance: 70.35 km
Running days: 5/ 7
Ave: 14.07 km per run day
November: 35.05 km
Year: 3647.35 km

The Cotter group have left the Cotter for summer and returned to Molonglo Reach. That's good because there is easy access to both Mt Ainslie and Mt Majura for SFT training plus plenty of flat options if the mountains don't appeal. Small group of mainly females plus me with Stuart walking started out just after 7:30 this morning. It had rained overnight with the clouds still threatening to dump more rain at any time, humidity was high and the temperature was cool, but not cold.
The usual start past the golf course toward Campbell Park offices where the kangaroos and rabbits were obviously enjoying a few drops of rain, they were in abundance, big and very small. I left they girls at the horse stile and headed towards Mt Majura, up the steep hill past Trent's grave and down to the reservoir and another horse stile. Straight up the hill to the top of Mt Majura, passing a cyclist pushing his mountain bike up a very steep section. He offered $ 10 for me to assist but I declined, no pocket to carry the money.
Nearing the top I had to keep well left as another mountain biker was absolutely flying down the dirt track, just hope he didn't come off at that speed because there would have pieces scattered everywhere, and the bike would not have been too good either.
I had a good run/jog but no walk all the way to the top, slow but on the move all the time, that was positive for next weeks Two Peaks and the Triple Tri. Ewen, I think the girl in the short blue dress we saw a couple of years ago up here was out again, this time in pink, made the effort worth while.
Turned back down the same track after a short rest on the top, but continued down the zig zag to the houses of Watson, then along to the Ainslie track, up to the saddle and return on the roller coaster track past the pistol club and the gold course to the start.
It must have been the day to run with the dog this morning, I met plenty of mostly females getting pulled along by their canines wanting to go fast.
Arrived back to the start just over 2 hours after leaving, the others just about to leave after a relaxing coffee. Stood in the waters of Lake Burley Griffin for 10 minutes to aid recovery, not really cold enough but it does the job. Stuart advised me we have a new handicapper for the vet's athletic club for next year, but he doesn't wish to do the announcements at the monthly handicaps, so it will be I who has control of the microphone on the last Sunday of each month.
Good day today, nice to get back to the mountains, but company would be nice occasionally, it's going to be a long year otherwise. Debbie said she would like to run SFT next year, but I don't want to be part of any more females falling apart trying to keep the training for SFT.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Opportunity Knocks

Distance: 14.8 km
Time: 82' 26"
Rate: 5' 34" per km
Weather: part sun/cloud, temp 21 degrees, humid 60%, calm
Week: 50.1 km
Nov: 14.8 km
Year: 3627.1 km

As I wrote yesterday, I have to make the most of my opportunities to run, some days it just doesn't work out. Lucky today to get time in the middle of the day to get out, not very far or fast as I intend to get to Molonglo on Saturday morning to hit a mountain or two in readiness for Two Peaks and the mtn leg in Triple Tri in the next couple of weeks.
Today, down by the river, first towards Point Hut and then back past Pine Is to the rock wall below the Lake Tuggeranong spill way near the creek. Not much to say about the run, no one around, except the humidity was a nuisance and the flies, plenty of them.

Thursday, November 1, 2007

October in Review

Today: Nil

October: 291.6 km / 18 runs in 31 days at 16.2 km per run day

Occasionally there are days when, even with the best of intentions, running has to take a back seat. I start work this at 5:45 am, so there is no way I am going running before I go to work. Monday and Tuesday this week were good running days, split shifts, 4 hour breaks in the middle of the day, out I went. Wednesday, split shift again, but a meeting at 11: 30 at the AIS for 2 hours ruined a midday run finishing work at 6:30pm, no go.
Today, same early start, had to work all through the day, did extra after I should have finished at 4: 30 pm, finished work at 5: 30 pm, too buggered when I got home to even think about going to the vet's track meet.
Hopefully, Friday will be better, moral of the story, make the most of opportunities, one day they may not be there to enjoy your favourite activity.
October had highs and lows that I don't usually get, I am more consistent without the peaks and troughs. That way, there is never a drama, accept it all as it happens. The high was definitely the good run and place in Brindabella Classic. Great day, got hot during the run but survived in one piece. The low was being picked up off the shower floor in disney land, going back to bed for the rest of the day.
I chatted with Horrie during BC and we both acknowledged that tapering and recovery usually prevent good running to be done. So a wasted week in effect before and after BC, a wasted 4 - 5 days of not much being sick, there goes the month of October. Otherwise it should have been good, the weather had improved, motivation was there, time and opportunity was there. Done in by a race and getting sick.
November has arrived, the plan leading to SFT is under way, to be finalised in full a bit later when a few event dates are confirmed. From a running point of view, the drought is acceptable, the tracks are nice and dry, the weather reliable. This weekend, rain and thunderstorms are expected, not a good sign when I am about to up the mileage. Let's hope it only rains at night.