Sunday, 26 July 2009

Always in Training,........

...never in racing.
Some of my best runs have been in training, 6 mile tempo runs @ 06:30 pace, 24 mile long runs @ 07:33 pace giving all the indications that great things lay ahead. However very often these training runs were my premature peak before the important race (usually a marathon). Granted I've had some good races too but the best were run during the build up to a bigger event:- - the 38:15 10k 8 weeks out from the Cork Marathon in 2008 - the 1:24:30 HM 6 weeks before Amsterdam 2008 Hopefully i'll get this peaking thing right some day. With only 12 weeks to Dublin and a longest run of only 12 miles i'm aiming to peak about 6 to 8 weeks after the event so that I will run a decent marathon (i'll need an 18-20 week programme with a tune-up marathon race at week 12 - one of those ultra programmes ought to do) I spent the last week in Inchydoney looking after my mum. Safan, Ani and Saran came with me for a mini holiday spending the mornings in bed/playing on the DS and the afternoons on the beach having fun in the surf (wetsuits a necessity). Conditions were more favourable to surfing than swimming as my only attempt at training was a disaster (good fun though). On Sunday afternoon I cycled the 30 miles down (Abina drove the kids & provisions). I decided to pop my aero-bars on the bike for good measure (Rick must have been reading my mind) and although I was cycling into a westerly breeze I managed a respectable 19.2 MPH avg (30.9 kph Ewen) compared to my Lough Ine bike speed of about 18 MPH (29kph). I returned on Tuesday with the wind at my back @ 20.8 MPH avg (33.4 kph) - As I said "Always in Training". Although the aero-bars will remain on for the Kenmare Tri in 2 weeks. I didn't get much running in early in the week which had the beneficial side effect of killing off the PF issue I had. On Monday I tried using the treadmill my father had used for his stroke rehab but the maximum speed was 6 MPH and I managed to burn out the motor after 2 miles (the poor thing hadn't seen action in a couple of years). I got another 2 mile hilly run in on Wednesday evening following 30 minutes on the turbo trainer (bike treadmill). I fared better on Thursday with an 8 mile run in the morning w/ 10 x 30 seconds fast and a barefoot 4 miler on the beach in the afternoon with 3 x 600m @ 06:20 pace. The beach run was tough, particularly as the surface alternated between firm and soft sand without warning - there's nothing like trying to run fast while your feet are sinking deeper the harder you push. Friday's run was an easy10 miler with a few hills thrown in to add a bit of a challenge. I drove my mam to my brother in Dublin yesterday, where she is staying for the week. I managed to get a hilly 12 miler in before returning today. I did a 6 mile out and back route from Cabinteely heading in the general direction of the Dublin mountains - luckily it was time to turn back by the time I reached the really challenging hills. This is the first week I have exceeded 40 miles since early May. I'm certainly taking my time in returning to marathon training. I'd better get my ass in gear. I had intended spending the week off doing up the plan for Dublin but I'm still working on it. No rush, the fun is in the planning. 13th - 19th July (Run 20.6 miles, Bike 103.1 miles, Swim 700m) 20th - 26th July (Run 41.3 miles, Bike 60.2 miles, Swim about 250m)


  1. So, you haven't disappeared in a hole after all!

    You tend to peak quickly, and a 12 week marathon plan might actually suit you very well. I remember you disappearing into the hills in Blarney last year, and my fruitless pursuit during the second half of that race.

    If you need some miles in that area of Dublin, Cabinteely park is nice and reasonably hilly. One lap equals a bit more than a mile.

  2. I was away in Italy and got in some of the worst running of the last 3 years. My quads were in pieces. I'm putting it down to the variable diet, the 3 kids, the early starts after beer and the shockingly high temperatures - running a 1.6 mile switch back hill in 36 degrees heat sorts the men from the boys (I'm a boy!) I agree on the quick peak.

  3. If I could read minds I'd be very rich or very sad or maybe both...
    Those Tri bars not only let you cut through the air better but also lock your upper body into position to apply max power down to the pedals.
    Yes everyone is different so use what works for you, those long runs you did mid way into you training were impressive.
    there is a good marathon inside you waiting to come out.

  4. Anything over 30kph is good going in my book! Just be bloody careful of anything on the road (such as painted lines) when using them. Even the short tri bars have been banned in cycling road races.

    I like your new method of peaking. A bit like the "didn't peak" method Benoit used for the Olympic trials.