Sunday, 6 May 2012


Summer already - where has the year gone? At least I have 2 PB's to show for it and 1 of those was even under marathon distance. Still my focus remains on endurance, although I haven't decided on what my next target is - I'm leaning towards the Portumna 50k on 16th June. To keep my foot in and my interest piqued I have a few marathon pacing gigs over the next few months - starting with the Limerick marathon today, in which I was the sole 3:45 pacer - no pressure - except perhaps for the fact that I had the full Irish for breakfast this morning to soak up the pint of plain I had last night and was kinda worried that I might have to take a toilet break before the finish - "excuse me there for a minute, just keep going at the same pace - I gotta pop in here for a minute and I'll catch up with you in a bit"  would hardly instill confidence in those around me. The fact that one guy temporarily went in front of me and turned around after a minute looking for reassurance that I was still there was enough to convince me that "An bhfuil cead agam dul amach go dti an leithreas?" was a non-runner. As it turned out my fear was unfounded and I sailed around the course bringing 6 or 7 with me all the way on a beautiful sunny morning. The fact that I got thanks from a few guys and gals was enough to make it all worth while. One girl even asked for my pacing baloons. Another guy, Jerry O'Connor from Wexford, was heading up to Belfast afterwards to run in the Belfast Marathon tomorrow for his first double. The fact that the early mile markers were out did not help with the pacing.

Over Easter my Garmin, which had refused to recognise the satellites for the last 9 months,  has woken from its deep slumber to give me a glimpse of it's former capability, but reception is intermittent - a bit like tuning into BBC in the 80's. I have found that turning it on and off a few times, assuming I have the time and patience, will eventually give me a lock - weirdly enough sometimes it says that the GPS cache is not loaded (GPS=0.0) and the next time I turn it on it has suddenly appeared (GPS=2.90, I deleted version 3.0) but there are no satellites on the radar - next time I can see the screen cluttered with satellites but the Garmin refuses to lock on and then out of the blue I get a lock. I'm not that bothered as I have got used to running without pace/distance feedback and when I really need it I can go to the track.

I continue to run in the vibrams once a week for a tempo session and while my calves would feel tight for a day or two afterwards I have no real issues with them. Every now and then Abina brings a message back from the physio she is seeing for her back saying that I shouldn't be running in vibrams - this week Martin told her that he read an article recently saying that they negatively affect performance - "That's ok" I said "I already have 4 kids and don't plan on having any more - anyway I don't wear them in bed". "Racing performance, you idiot" She replied. I didn't bother telling her about Ballycotton but did suggest an early night with the barefoot shoes to test Martin's theory - she just gave me "one of her looks".

Wed 25th April - 5.25 miles in 39:59 (7:37 pace @ 128 HR - Easy run)

Thur 26th April - 8.77 miles in 59:09 (6:45 pace @ 142 HR - Tempo run in Vibrams)

Fri 27th April - 5.25 miles in 39:02 (7:26 pace @ No HRM - Easy run)

Sat 28th April - 21.3 miles in 2:51:28 (8:03 pace @ 129 HR - Long run)

Tue 1st May - a.m. - 9.61 miles in 1:10:48 (7:22 pace @ 134 HR - Easy run)
Tue 1st May - p.m. - 7.79 miles in 54:50 (7:02 pace @ 141 HR - Fartlek run)

Thur 3rd May - 8.07 miles in 1:04:42 (8:01 pace @ No HRM - Easy run)

Fri 4th May - 8.78 miles in 57:44 (6:34 pace @ 151HR - Tempo run in Vibrams) 

Sat 5th May - 10;58 miles in 1:18:48 (7:28 pace @ No HRM - Easy run)

Sun 6th May - 26.22 miles in 3:44:27 (8:34 pace @ No HRM - Long run) 


  1. Just don't give us a race report when you do test those performance issues.

    Well done on your solo pacing gig - now that is pressure!

  2. great stuff grellan


  3. Steady up on your digs at the Mrs or you'll end up like poor old Scott Brown - sleeping on the couch more often than not!

    Great pacing job. I'd have you as my pacer any day (providing I could run 3:45 again). Sounds like you've got one of the Chinese Garmins. Yes, it is possible to run without them ;)

  4. I;m keeping my minimal shoes for off road running [New balance 101] but i found no matter how good I got my running form my old legs will not take minimal on the road too well! I've invested in a new pair of Spira for my fast road running.
    Nice pacing job by the way1
    May the p.B.s keep on flowing :0]

  5. Well done on the pacing Grellan its such a huge thing for those guys looking to make the time..and asked for your balloons impressive...