Two Fruits

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Easy Does It

Distance: 8.8 km
Time:  49' 28"
Rate:  5' 38" per km
Weather; mostly sunny, temp 14 degrees, humidity 50%, wind NW 10 kmph
Week:  17.55 km, Aug: 176.5 km,  Year:  1522.45 km

Many, when returning to a bigger volume of running, do too much too soon. The risk of injury or sickness then becomes a lay off, that then leads to a repeat of the cycle.
During my last few months, I have at least done enough to maintain a low base. I am therefore trying to run consistently every day without increasing the distances by too much until I can be comfortable, and happy with where I am at. Just running 5-6 days a week will be good, time permitting.
Nothing again too exciting, the sun did shine after an overcast morning. Stopped in my tracks by 3 kangaroos that refused to get off the trail at Pine Is. After a few words of warning, and patience, one moved, the others followed.
Strewth, I work a night shift every 3rd week except in school holidays. So Tuesday group may see me more often. Tag along if you want a hill or two.

Monday, August 29, 2011

Back To Work

Distance:  8.75 km
Time: 50' 42"
Rate:  5' 47" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 15 degrees, humidity 40%, wind NW 15 kmph
Week: 8.75 km, Aug: 167.7 km, Year: 1513.65 km

Returned to work this morning at 5:45am,  how early is that after not setting an alarm clock for over 5 months ?
Luckily for me, the recruitment department have done a good job over the winter with more than 80 new drivers starting between the two depots.
Combined with most others turning up to work, I didn't have much to do today, eased back into work life very easily. Don't mention to any one else, but I did under 2 hours of actual driving, drank a few coffees, caught up with some changes, and had a refresher course on some of the new buses. Home on time. Probably won't last, make the most of any quiet days when possible.
As well, a lunch break to go for a short run, flat & slow, still in the "build a base" stage.
Nothing overly exciting about anything today, just the way I like it.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

Mt Taylor Handicap

Distance: 7.00 km plus warm up
Time: 36' 03"
Rate: 5' 08"
Start group: 36
Finished: 79th / 89
Weather: sunny, temp 10 degrees, humidity 70%, wind light north 10 kmph
Week: 60.00 km, Aug: 158.95 km, Year: 1504.9 km

Apart from the first events with the club, this has been the only time I have been ineligible for points or awards at a club monthly handicap. Consequently, I jogged/ran easy to not finish last & actually enjoy the event. I was lucky to have Emma A in the same start group as myself. She is not running well at the moment & soon dropped off our slow pace.
A bit later, she caught me and we chatted to the finish where she kindly let me finish in front. Lovely girl isn't she !!
Great to be back in the monthly handicap routine, catch up with those that remembered me & asked about our trip away from Canberra over the winter.

Saturday, August 27, 2011

One Day At A Time

Distance 6.85 km in 43' 34" at 6' 21" per km
Weather: sunny,temp 18 degrees, humidity 40%, wind north 15 kmph
Distance:  13.35 km
Time: 79' 52"
Rate: 5' 59" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 18 degrees, humidity 40%, wind north 10 kmph
Week:  49.25 km, Aug:  148.2 km, Year:  1494.15 km

Yesterday I jogged around the Mt Taylor vet's handicap course with Rob & Martin. No changes to the course used in few past years. Some hazard reduction burning took place during the week near the Chifley houses, the loop section, so the tracks are clear. A little rough inside the last one km where some rocks are exposed due to rain causing erosion of the top soil.
Today, I ran from home to the usual tracks between Pine Is and Point Hut. This was partly destroyed by floods and heavy rain during last summer. Good work by the local workmen during winter has restored the track to it's previous good condition, very good to run beside the river again.
Vet's handicap tomorrow, message to self, " don't finish last".

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Suburban Tracks

Distance: 8.65 km
Time:  54' 18"
Rate:  6' 17" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 19 degrees, humidity 32%, wind NW 30 kmph
Week:  29.05 km, Aug: 128.00 km, Year: 1473.95 km

Earlier I had intended to go back to Six Foot Track next year, but entry conditions have changed even for those with a long history of competing. I missed last year to concentrate on Centennial Park 100 km event & then left on an extended holiday. I now will have to run a qualifying event before the beginning of December to gain entry or go in the ballot. Not enough time to get fit enough, even find a road marathon or soft cut off time, off road event, so SFT may be ditched in favour of something else early in the new year.
At today's pace, plenty to do get around the Mt Taylor course on Sunday at the vet's handicap.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Plenty To Do To Get Back Into Shape

Distance:  10.25 km
Time:  64" 55" ( approx)
Rate:  6' 20 " per km ( approx)
Weather: sunny, temp 19 degrees, humidity 25%, wind northerly 15 kmph
Week:  20.4 km, Aug:  119.35 km, Year:  1465.3 km

I need plenty more of these consecutive days of running. The undulating hills behind Theodore proved too much for my lack of fitness, I walked.
The approximately for time and rate was due to my Garmin deciding that low battery warning means turning off with 41% of battery power remaining. So much for the 310XT having 20 hours.
However, it was easy to work out an estimate time, the first 6 kms were slow, so average out the remaining distance ( known from previous running), and bingo.
It's going to be a long slow process to get back to where I need to be to consider any events before the end of the year. Having said that, I may need to run a qualifier if I want to enter Six Foot Track. No pressure!

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Home at Last

Where: Canberra, the nation's capital, Aust.
Distance:  10.15 km
Time: 65' 20"
Rate: Ruth pace - 6' 25" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 9 degrees, humidity 70%, wind calm
Week: 10.15 km, Aug:  109.1 km, Year: 1455.05

I ventured over to Black Mtn peninsular this morning to meet and hope the Tuesday running group remembered me. Lots of familiar faces including Ruth and Byran who kindly ran slow enough for me to keep up as we toured the edges of Lake Burley Griffin.
Just far enough for me to make it without walking, but I am sure unfit. A few consistent weeks and I will be able to return to the usual undulating trails around Canberra.
Meanwhile, just need to get out there & enjoy some sunny running days, it's still late winter !

Saturday, August 20, 2011

Rough Weather

Where:  Tomago,  NSW
Running:  Nil

After a couple of runs along One Mile Beach at Anna Bay, that's all there has been.
The east coast lows in the Tasman Sea have conspired to prevent any running, it's been just aweful outside for the last week. May be I've got soft, but doesn't matter.
We leave for home on Monday morning, so providing Sydney traffic doesn't prove too much, we should be in the front door mid afternoon.
The week will still be busy settling into a "normal" life again, getting a return to work sorted out, unpacking & realizing that there is no more holidays for a while.
When I can get back into the old routine will be a challenge, especially when our photos are now on desk top screen saver. I get to look every day at where we have been over the past 5 months every time we turn on the lap top.

Tuesday, August 16, 2011

Go Anna

Where:  Anna Bay,  NSW
Distance:  11.65 km,
Thime:  62' 08"
Rate:  5' 19" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 18 degrees, humidity 60%, wind SSE 10 kmph, sea temp 18 degrees
Week:  11.65 km,  Aug:  98.95 km, Year: 1444.9 km

We moved from Hawks Nest to Anna Bay, really only a few kms down the road. On the way, we stopped at the Jayco dealer in Newcastle to get our hot water system fixed. Apparently the bore water from outback Qld had stopped the element from working properly, so no hot water. Fixed in a short time, on we go.
This part of Port Stephens is very quiet at the moment, only half a dozen vans in the park, but by the time school holidays arrive, this place is full.
Today is also the last sunny day for a while, rain expected by midday tomorrow, and staying around for almost a week. The beach is just through the dunes, may be 200 metres. It's called One Mile Beach, but the GPS measured it at 1.2 kms, a bit short of a mile.
Easy running up and down the beach about 10 times, with a short run and down the high dunes at the eastern end, great views out to sea. Bare feet as usual on the sand.
There are supposed to be koalas in the area, but none sighted as yet. No goannas either !! True Australians out of sight.

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Whales Be Gone

Distance:  7.15 km
Time: 39' 04"
Rate:  5' 27" per km
Weather: cloudy, temp 15 degrees, humidity 70%, wind sthy 15 kmph
Week: 37.75 km, Aug:  87.3 km, Year: 1433.25 km

Yesterday afternoon there were 4 whales just off the beach. May be some were hiding in the morning. A great sight with plenty of people watching. Seemed the news had got around.
Heavy rain this morning, did look like getting any running done today. However, the clouds moved to a very average day, at least dry this afternoon.
Late run along beach, no one about & no whales, all gone off to warmer waters.
Last time to run along a beach bare feet for a long time, unless you call the sand at Pine Is at home a beach. If so, about 20 metres is all you get.
I will total up my bare feet running kilometres and record it. The different opinions about bare feet running may or may not be in line with what I have done over the last 3 months.
Whatever, it will be strange to run again regularly in shoes.

Saturday, August 13, 2011

Hawks Nest Beach Run

Where: Hawks Nest, NSW
Distance:  11.15 km
Time: 62' 07"
Rate:  5' 34" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 17 degrees, humidity 55%, wind almost calm, sea temp 18 degrees
Week:  36.6 km, Aug: 80.15 km,  Year: 1426.1 km

Moved to Hawks Nest on the top side of Port Stephens bay. Yesterday it rained, it was cold, and it didn't look like the weekend would be much. However, a few overnight rain drops finally disappeared and today is nice. The best part is the wind has dropped and turned from southerly to light NW.
The van park is just behind the sand dunes, only a 100 metres from the beach, so nice and easy to find somewhere to run. Good conditions, ran bare feet as usual on the sand. It will be hard to run in shoes again when I get home. Finished with a quick swim to wash off the salt, not as cold as I expected in the waves.
The beach is on a slope, not used to that where elsewhere it has been almost flat. Combined with a near high tide, running wasn't easy, but it did make me put in a effort, I need to lift my game and now try to get fit.
The southern end of the beach had plenty of people watching a whale having fun just off the beach. Easy to spot the tail in the water, not sure on the size of the whale, but they are so magnificent to see in the ocean.

Wednesday, August 10, 2011

Qld Left Behind

Where: Evans Head, NSW
Distance:  15.00 km
Time:  78' 48"
Rate: 5' 15" per km - bare feet on sand
Weather: sunny, temp 19 degrees, humidity 35%, wind NW 10 km
Week: 25.45 km, Aug:  69.00 km, Year: 1414.95 km

We are now south of the Qld border, back to where we stayed a week in late May on our way north. We would love to stay here another week again, but we have arranged to meet up with our Newcastle relatives this weekend at Hawkes Nest.
As before there is a nice open beach here, the caravan park is just behind the sand dunes and next to the river mouth. We have a great spot facing the river, just 600 metres to the beach.
Beaut morning, great running conditions to amble up and down the beach, no shoes of course, and no need for many clothes either.
A quick swim in a 19 degrees sea to finish off, only the brave and wet suited surfers out there.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Lota People on Esplanade

Distance:  10.45 km
Time: 55' 44"
Rate:  5' 20" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 18 degrees, humidity 50%, wind west 10kmph
Week:  10.45 km, Aug: 54.00 km, Year: 1399.95 km

Another easy esplanade run from Lota ( a Brisbane bayside suburb) to Wynnum creek and return.
For a Monday morning/lunchtime, plenty of people about enjoying the nice sunny day.
Nothing much to report, nice day as has the last week been. Still cool overnight which is probably good as we slowly acclimatize as we meander our way south over the next two weeks.

Saturday, August 6, 2011

Wynnum / Manly Esplanade

Distance:  12.05 km
Time: 61' 39"
Rate: 5' 07" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 23 degrees, humidity 45%, wind NNE 5 kmph
Week & Aug: 43.55 km,  Year: 1389.5 km

We are now in bay side Brisbane staying for a few days with friends that moved here from Canberra earlier in the year.
It's nice here at the moment, close to the sea, and suitably cool for what the locals call winter. Our friends took their two poodle dogs down to the esplanade for a walk while I enjoyed the scenery of the harbour, the yacht club and the hundreds of people out enjoying the day.
Back at the house I had 15 minutes standing waist deep in their salt water pool, water temp around 18 degrees, cool enough to be of benefit for recovery.
The chocolate cake with coffee afterwards was probably better for me, or at least as enjoyable.
Liz, enjoy Townsville & have a good run in the marathon.

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Miniature Horses

Distance:  9.2 km
Time:  46' 38"
Rate:  5' 04" per km
Weather: part sun/cloud, temp 19 degrees, humidity 60%, wind SSE 10 kmph
Week & Aug:  31.5 km, Year:  1377.45 km

The showgrounds are full of miniature horses, or Shetland ponies ? Is there a difference ? Competition is on this weekend, admission is free, just go over to the stands and enjoy.
Therefore, I ran around the smaller area just over 400 metres in length, avoiding the horses and their owners. Plus taking no chances of getting the hendra virus.
Move on tomorrow to stay with ex Canberra friends now living in Brisbane before slowly heading south.
Liz, warm Qld in winter is much mistaken by southerners. This trip has been far from warm, very cool to cold overnight, may be only a week or two when south of Townsville when the day time high temp has been over 25 degrees. Night temps at Charleville when we were there was - 3, same as Canberra.
You will get warm weather in Townsville for the marathon, be prepared, else where, it's best be described as mild. However, it's much warmer than at home, so any day time temp over 20 degrees is great.
We have the heater on every night, only once or twice has the air con been needed during the day.

Wednesday, August 3, 2011

Beware of Horses

Distance:  12.1 km
Time:  64' 05"
Rate:  5' 17" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 21 degrees, humidity 50%, wind east 5 kmph
Week & Aug: 22.3 km, Year: 1368.25 km

The Hendra virus in the horse population is again a problem in SE Qld & northern NSW. We are currently at the Caboolture showgrounds, horses coming in and out every day mainly for dressage training.
There are signs everywhere allerting visitors to be carefull. Market stall holders over the weekends are not allowed in many parts of the arena. Fortunately I haven't seen or heard of any bats in the area that may transmit the virus.
I ran around the perimeter of the arena today in near perfect conditions, may be similar to those being experienced back at home. However, conditions here will stay the same, winter is sure to return down south.
Currently I'm working on a plan to get me back here next year, this time to run. It has to be a 12 month plan, even though I'm not sure of the event I will tackle. I will need to find a couple of long races over time not distance.

Monday, August 1, 2011

Post Race Jog

Distance: 10.2 km
Time:  58' 47"
Rate:  5' 46" per km
Weather: sunny, temp 18 degrees, humidity 30%, wind calm
Week & Aug:  10.2 km,  Year: 1356.15 km

I helped, a bit, clean up after the events of the weekend, then had a nap in the afternoon, still tired. I didn't even run over the weekend.
Late this afternoon, jogged slowly around the track because I couldn't get lost, just follow the foot steps of the runners as seen of this image of Trevor & Natalie. They finished 2nd & 3rd in the 48 hour, well behind Martin.
Both suffered badly during the event but continued on to record very good results. It's as much mental as physical to start & finish ultras. Physically you can get through the cramping, blisters & stomach problems every one seems to have. Mentally, only the strong survive, so easy to say I've had enough.
Four weeks from today, I'll be back at work after this time away. Really haven't missed getting out of bed at 5 am to start work before 6 on cold Canberra mornings.
Not much to do or see now before heading south, just ease down the pace again.