Showing posts from May, 2007

Keep On Being Straight Forward

It's amazing how busy I feel I have been over the last few days, considering I have hardly been training. Because of my sinus infection I took two complete days off training, then yesterday completed a threshold run of 2x15min, which felt okay. This morning I completed a weights session quite comfortably. I'm still fighting the infection, so won't do anything too hard for another day or two. Otherwise time has been filled up with doctor appointments, work and the normal tasks of life. Giggles and the baby had a check up at the obstetrician, and I am pleased to say everything is going well and straight forward. He said, "Keep on being straight forward."

Amoxycillin & Clavulanic Acid

Great day of running yesterday, sinus infection today. Oh well, a few days of taking it easy and some anti's should see me right.

Run Like The Wind

I wish, but there was plenty of wind this morning down at Williamstown. A cold and blustery morning heralded another year at the Sri Chinmoy Running and Fitness Festival. It just wouldn't be right if the day started warm and toasty. Giggles, her little sis and my parents all came down for the day. Always makes for an awesome race when you have a lot of support. BigD arrived just in time to enter and walk down to the start. I had already been for about a 25min warm-up.

There was the traditional moment of silence and then it was a mass start for all events. I positioned myself off to the side in the front line, and this proved to give me a nice clean start over the first couple of hundred metres. After last weeks pain of going out too hard I decided to take it a bit easier and stick to around 4:15/km for at least the first 5km. By about 3km it was all feeling pretty easy and I averaging about 4:10-12/km. I was next to a guy running the marathon who said he wanted to run a 3…

Sleep Train Sleep Train Sleep...

Oh and work too. Life takes on a kind of surreal haze when I'm working nights. I missed my swim the other day, but should be able to catch up tomorrow without any problem. Over the last couple of days my sleep has been in 2-4 hour blocks interspered with a short training session or work. It seemed to work okay, but I do need a good 9-10 hour sleep within the next day or two to catch up. Weights felt great yesterday, and todays straight swim of 1000m felt comfortable enough, but not as good as last week.

Nanna Nap Extended

I'm into my new roster and tonight is my first 14 hour night shift in a few months, so I need my sleep. I slept well last night and woke up with no alarm reasonably early this morning. After a coffee, feeding of the pets, gathering of my running gear (which included my first effort at mixing up some polyjoule), I headed out the door for another 2.5 hour run.

Since I was pretty sore yesterday and I'm running a half marathon in a few days time, I thought it best not do anything too hard terrain-wise, so limited myself to following the common creek and river trails. Turned out to be a good solid run, with a steady, but gradual increase in pace throughout with only a small amount of heart rate creep. It felt good and I didn't need to take any carbohydrate during the run, which I'm now consistently doing for this length of run. I downed the polyjoule at the end of the run, and found it to taste not too bad, even if it was bland. I think I may have found my cheap altern…


I know that delayed onset muscle soreness (DOMS) is often worse two days after a race, but I didn't expect it to be so bad this morning. Yesterday I felt fine, just a little tight in the morning which soon cleared up. I did my weights session in the evening with no trouble. Definitely no hint of any residual soreness or fatigue from the previous days race. Even stepping out of bed this morning I felt good. In the past I have found my calves seizing up when I first attempt to stand up a day or two after racing, but not this morning.

My run this morning was planned to be 2x10min at anaerobic conditioning pace (80-90%HRmax), but I didn't get much past the warm up. My run always starts up a short incline out of court, and part way up both calves felt like they had become rocks. They were heavy and inflexible. I decided to continue at a very easy pace for the next few minutes, but it just wasn't going to work. My calves just kept tightening up.

I called it quits, after a…

No Half Measure

I'm starting to think the half marathon distance is going to be a good indicator of my run fitness as I progress towards the Ironman. It is predominantly aerobic, it is raced at around the so-called anaerobic threshold, and is short enough not to require an extended recovery period. Furthermore, I have always enjoyed the half marathon. You require a good sense of pace judgement, combined with mental toughness to put in a good time relative to your fitness level. It can be approached from a very methodical point of view, or you can attempt to race just on feel. It is also long enough to expose any weaknesses.

With the above thoughts in mind, I plan on racing a few half marathons over the next year. I'll start with the Sri Chinmoy Fitness Festival at Williamstown next weekend. This is a race I love doing, and I race it most years. It always has a great atmosphere and of course the draw card is the pancakes and apple crumble post race. I haven't worked out my pacing p…

A Positive Split Is Not a Positive

This morning I woke up feeling a bit tight, so a longer more progressive warm up would be in order today. I made a strong coffee, got my bowl of cornflakes and checked out the weather and cool running forums. I have a habit of getting up very early and getting to the race venue often before they are ready to take registrations. It's something I've always done and I think it helps me prepare mentally. This morning was no exception.

The morning was clear and crisp when I arrived at the Coburg track. After registering I disappeared along the walking path for an easy 30 minute warm up. Towards the end I included some light plyometrics, and while I may look silly doing some of this stuff, I don't care. After all I think I run faster as a result. I still had a while to wait so I just sat and waited for a while. With about 15 minutes to go, I put in a solid aerobic run around the track of 2000m. I was finally feeling good. It was time to race.

On the starting line I reco…

Consistent Flexibility

The next cycle of training begins on Monday. I have a change in roster at work, so I will be working the 10/14 which means I'm back to night shifts. This involves two days of 10 hours, two nights of 14 hours followed by four days off, but that first day is usually a complete right-off as I have to sleep for most of it. It's now an eight day week. Based on previous years, the key to training well on the roster is to make sure I get enough quality sleep and don't let fatigue accumulate over time.

My approach for the next four weeks is to set out what I believe is a balanced, basic plan with the flexibility of being able to shift a few of the sessions by a day to cater for my fatigue levels. As I've been filling up my life with many different things of late, I'm starting to think that the magic doesn't lie in the fine details of the sessions, but more in consistently completing training day in, day out. Within reason, I'm not going to be too concerned if I'…

Alive and Kicking

The first little one is alive and kicking!Giggles is 12 weeks along and I can't wait for a big change in our life.

Honestly, You Won't Get Sick

All the information that comes with the influenza vaccination does say there is no link to developing a cold or flu symptoms after you have it. It may just be a coincidence, but a few hours after having my shot yesterday I developed these symptoms. It wasn't too bad when I went to bed, but on waking this morning, there was no chance I was going training. Instead I opted to reset my alarm and have another 90 minutes in bed. I don't feel too bad, but I think I have destroyed part of the world's rainforests through my use of tissues. I'll see how I wake up tomorrow before deciding if I do any training. No point pushing the body if it's trying to fight an infection.

"Complexity means distracted effort. Simplicity means focused effort." - Edward De Bono

Are You Allergic To Nuts, Eggs or Bird Feathers?

Today everything is fitting into place. I woke up a few minutes before my alarm was meant to go off, which was a good thing, because I had the volume turned down, so I wouldn't have heard it. It felt a bit too warm for 6am, so I checked to see if I'd left the heater on over night. I hadn't. The temperature outside was already 15 degrees, much better than the 5 or 6 on most recent mornings. I put on my run gear, had a quick drink and it was out the door for a threshold run in the fog.

I love running in fog, for some reason I feel faster. Maybe it's because I can't see far ahead and my view is distorted. I followed the local creek trail and was surprised by the number of other people out running or walking. At least twice as many as usual. It makes a big difference when it's warmer. I finished the run feeling energised and ready for a quick session on the weights. The cats decided to join me, but I don't think jumping on my stomach during a bench press is such…

It's Just The Way You Look At It

Swimming is always the first session I tend to drop. It is also my weakest discipline. I'm sure there's a link there. While I was at the pool today I got to thinking about why I tend to miss so many swim sessions. The first few ideas that popped into my head were that I makes up the smallest portion of an ironman, you can't win the race in the swim, I've swum well on limited training before and you only get limited returns for your investment in time. I soon realised these were excuses, not reasons.

Swimming doesn't come as easily as running and cycling do. While I often talk about training hard to achieve my goals, if I'm really honest, I tend to skip swimming because I find it difficult to do well. I find it easy to find an excuse to get out of driving to the pool and once I'm there I find my mind is trying to find a reason to shorten the workout. Maybe it's the lack of changing scenery, the black line just doesn't stimulate the senses. Maybe it…

It's Not Dedication If It's Easy

Running is officially back on track. For yesterday's long run I covered about 28km in 2 hours 30min. Based on the sections that I have measured, I averaged a pace of 5:23/km over various terrain that included flat paved walking tracks, to rough overgrown single track and very steep hills. The key point about this run that has me really excited, it was very easy. There wasn't a single time I felt like stopping or slowing down. Even towards the end I felt like I could comfortably keep running for at least another hour.

This morning I woke up pretty stiff, but that has all but, disappeared already. This afternoon I'll hit the weights and tomorrow it is a long swim and ride. I'm hoping they'll feel as good as my run, but I think that may be a bit too optimistic.

Feeling Good

So I had a couple of runs that didn't feel so good. I definitely should get over that, because everything else really is working.

Friday morning at the pool I started my body balance progression. Balance in the water has always been my weak point, as my centre of gravity is a good distance away from my centre of buoyancy. That is my legs sink. After my warm up I swam a couple of 50ms using what has been termed swimming golf in which you add the number of strokes over 50m to the time it takes to swim. A lower score is related to better efficiency. I scored 94. Then it was into a 40 minute set of exercises of body positioning and balance drills using fins. It was surprisingly taxing, but the immediate results were fantastic. I repeated the swimming golf at the same effort level and scored 85. I'll have to see how long swim goes in a few days.

Saturday morning was a cycling strength session followed by a threshold run of 10min. The bike is what someone else has called a …

It's Triathlon, Not Swim, Bike, Run

If I don't feel fit for running, then I don't feel fit overall. It doesn't matter how well I am performing in swimming or cycling, or any other activity, if my run isn't working, then it all doesn't feel right. I've put in some better training over the last few days. I think the 4 days where I directed my attention elsewhere (slacked off?), may have actually been a good thing. I've nearly completed my initial break-in training and in just over a week I'll be starting on a more directed program.

My swimming is progressing as it should, I am starting to develop a feel for the water. My local muscle endurance is way off the mark, but that was to be expected. My backside is getting used to spending time in the saddle, and my legs are remembering how to spin round and round. As for running, I feel like I've taken a few steps back. I went to the track this morning for an aerobic capacity session. During the dynamic warm-up I felt very uncoordinated. The wa…

It's Not That Cold... but...

The weather has been great recently. Beautiful mild, clear and sunny days. Pity I've been at work for most of them. The biggest change I've noticed recently is it is now much colder in the mornings before the sun has had a chance to wake everything up. Now I know in the big scheme of things it isn't that cold. There have only been a few mornings where I've had ice on my car. It doesn't ever snow here. But to me, the relative drop in temperature makes a big difference. My hands hurt.

I know it sounds soft, but there is a reason I'm whinging about my hands. I have Raynaud's Disease, otherwise known as Primary Raynaud's. It is a condition that results in reduced blood flow to the extremities including hands, feet, nose and ears. In my case in mainly affects my hands, but also my feet. The reduced blood flow results in my hands first turning white, and sometimes going blue in extreme cases, developing "pins and needles", then numbness and reduced s…

Rise and Shine

The amount of sleep I need appears to be very dependant on the training I do. Usually I find if I am in full training I require 8-9 hours. If it's an easy week then I'm often awake after only 6 hours. I know I have only done a couple of runs in the last few days, but this morning I was wide awake at 4:45am. Just under 6 hours of sleep. I'll have a bit of breakfast and then get into the weights as I originally planned, plus I think I'll also have time for a bit of run afterwards.

Hopefully I don't crash out later today.

Dog Proof Fence

Axl got out for the second time. Guess I hadn't done such a good job on the fence. After a few hours after work searching and putting up signs, we had no luck. This morning I decided to put in another long run and search the streets and parks. Again no luck.

This afternoon we received a phone call. Someone had found Axl, or more accurately, Axl had found someone. He turned up last night at a ladies front door. Naturally he picked the house that had three other dogs in the back yard. So this is where he spent the night and day, before being taken to the vet, where they recognised him straight away.

So after the dog's escapades and the renovations, my training has basically been a right off for the last few days. I haven't been to the pool. I put in only one half-assed effort on the bike, and missed a couple of runs. I'll regroup tomorrow, then put in two good weeks before I have a change in roster.


We have an Airedale Terrier. He is a very excitable, stubborn and crazy dog. I can't take him running, because his hips and knees aren't likely to hold up. He's already had a knee reconstruction to repair a ruptured anterior cruciate ligament. Yes, that is the classic footy injury.

Recently, next door got a dog that decided to dig holes under the fence. This is something Axl hadn't yet worked out. But now he is onto to it, there doesn't seem to be much stopping him. Sadly next door's dog died unexpectedly, but had left its mark with a good sized hole under the fence. We decided to leave this hole for a couple of days, hoping that Axl would realise the dog was no longer next door, then he'd lose interest in trying to dig his way over.

Yesterday morning I got up and fed Axl, who I was happy to see was still in my yard and not the neighbour's. I wrote a quick post and headed out for my run. It wasn't the most enjoyable of runs. After only about ten minut…


Yesterday didn't invlove any swimming, cycling or running, but that doesn't mean I didn't get a work out. Instead I spent the day getting up tiles and they weren't easy. After a few hours on the jack hammer and crowbar I was wishing we hadn't ever decided to do some renovations. This morning I've woken up aching all over. I am discovering some muscles I had previously forgetten about. Just goes to show no matter how fit you are, if you do something you're not used to, the body soon lets you know about it.

Part way through lifting the tiles, surrounded in dust, Giggles stopped and said, "Uh oh, I think we have a problem." I looked over at where she was pointing. There was a pile of tiles, upside down, and there was one word visible on the backing. ASBESTOS. Fan-bloody-tastic. I've just spent the last few hours working with asbestos, I thought.

False alarm. On closer inspection, it said NOT MANUFACTURED WITH ASBESTOS. Much better for o…