Showing posts from May, 2008

Part of Life

There was a period in my life where every thing I did revolved around the sport of triathlon. I was studying Human Movement, coaching individual athletes and squads, working in a sports store and competing. Even what I ate and how I spent any spare time was all somehow geared towards the sport. Gradually reality caught up with me and I realised I wasn't fast enough to make money as an athlete. Then came the realisation I was no longer enjoying what I was doing. Too much of a good thing perhaps.

So I made the decision to add more to my life. As a result I've changed careers more than once. Played around a bit with endurance sports. Importantly I've also found plenty of enjoyment in things unrelated to sport.

Determination, discipline and passion have been things I've been told I have. This can depend on your viewpoint. It is easy to put in the work if you enjoy what you are doing. I have also been told I am obsessive or too single-minded. So while I have a history of plan…

Race of the Garmins

I've been used to the assorted beeping heard at the start of races as everyone starts their stopwatches. Then their is the occasional beep as someone marks a lap or split during the race. Sometimes you hear an alarm as someone ventures outside their heart rate zone. Now their is a new sound...

... the chirp of the wrist mounted GPS unit. At nearly every kilometre mark on last Sunday's race, was heard this chirp. What I did find interesting was that of the people I noticed using these units, not one seemed to be happy about whatever the unit was telling. Maybe they weren't happy with the pace, Based on previous conversations, some weren't convinced the course was accurate as the race signage didn't exactly match their GPS.

Training toys have appealed to me in the past, but at this stage I am still unconvinced about any advantage a GPS unit will give me. Each to their own I guess.

Sri Chinmoy Running & Fitness Festival - Race Report

Yet again the people of Sri Chinmoy put on a great event. After the last few freezing mornings, I was glad that it was actually very pleasant at Williamstown. I missed most of my planned warm up having lined up in the wrong queue to pick up my timing and was only left with about five minutes to get the blood moving.

Some friendly chatter at the start line. I placed myself in the third row from the front, taking into account all the races were starting at the same time. Since I was in the half marathon, I thought the shorter distance runners would head faster than myself. After an attempted moment of silence, it was ready, set, go!

The start was a mess. Someone took a tumble off to my side. Some kids decided to run across the whole field. What I found interesting was as I reached the first corner, there appeared a ridiculous number of people in front of me. I am sure all these people did not pass me from the start line. My best guess is that a number started from the sidelines and joined…

You Must See Some Terrible Things

In reply to:

How do think being exposed with trauma/accidents at work effects your day to day life. Are you overly cautious regarding risks as you know what can happen? How do you deal with cycling on the roads? Does it worry you? I am thinking hard about whether I want to be a cyclist long term due to the risks associated with riding in traffic etc.

This is a reasonably common question put to me. One which I think deserves a post.

Of course having to deal with trauma affects how I approach life, but I think I am far from over cautious. Some things need to be explained before I get into my approach to cycling. With the disclaimer that I am not in any way saying there isn't a significant impact that trauma has on the patient, family, friends, bystanders and others connected, here is my answer.

Trauma to the people that I treat as a paramedic does not affect me in the way that a number of people believe it would. Of course there is an effect, but I wouldn't be very good at my work i…

Catch Up

I haven't been too active on my blog or in training over the last few days. While I have been doing some short, light training sessions, I haven't pushed it. Whatever bug had me unwell just prior to the Mother's Day Classic has still been hanging around. It hasn't been as bad, but still has drained my energy and my guts just weren't happy with any sort of higher intensity. Combine that with 70 hours at work in the last week thanks to a couple of extra training days and there hasn't been too much free time.

My original plan was to hit it out hard over the last weekend and early into this week before taken it easy in two days lead up to Sunday's half marathon. No big taper. In fact I don't plan on doing any significant tapering for a while. The reasons are a topic for a later post. Anyway, plans change. Now I'm just planning on doing some reasonable training, to keep my body ticking, but nothing too hard that will suck my legs dry before Sunday.


I Know How To Run Slow

“Why would I want to train slow? I already know how to run slow. I want to run fast! So I must train fast!” - Emil Zatopek

No Brainer

Wednesday night I headed into Greensborough for some Street Orienteering. It is something I used to compete in a fair a while ago, but more recently have only made the occasional appearance. Feeling happy with my results from last Sunday's 8km I was determined to have a good race. (Mothers Day Official Results: Time 31:16. Overall place 23rd of 3873 and Male 18-39 placing was 16th of 754).

Following a solid warm up, I checked out the unmarked map and decided on a few possible course options. It was only at start time when the marked maps were being handed out that I realised it was a Score event, and not a Set Control course which I was used to. Not to worry too much I decided to just collect twenty control points within the 60 minute time frame. I wasn't feeling very humble.

Off into the dark I headed, falling into what turned out to be a ridiculously fast pace. I carried this through the first two controls with no problem, then turned early before the third marker. The rest o…

Hazardous Lifting

Presently I enjoy my lifestyle. A big part of that comes from not just being healthy, but being fit and capable of enjoying various active pursuits. In particular, competing in endurance sports. Some of the reasoning behind my new push to develop fitness to be useful and for life comes from my job. Suffering an injury from my work could negatively impact on the rest of my life. I'd like to do the best that I can to avoid this. Working as a Paramedic exposes me to a certain number of risks. Following is a list taken from the Worksafe Victoria website.The most common causes of injuries reported by emergency services workers include:manual handlingmotor vehicle accidentsphysical assault exposure to hazardous substances and dangerous goods stress psychological trauma falls from height slips, trips and falls electrocution fatigue being hit or crushed by objects burns bullying Through my physical training the area that I can have the most affect on is manual handling.
The following is ag…

Mother's Day Classic 8km - Race Report

Well I've now had my first race since the Ironman. It didn't go too badly, especially since I the one and half days lead up involved vomiting and diarrhoea from food poisoning. The beef and green curry pie seemed like a good idea at the time.

Waking up Sunday morning I was feeling completely drained. Having taken in only water a a few dried biscuit the day before, there wasn't too much in the tank. If I hadn't already entered the race I probably wouldn't have gone. So I sipped through a coffee and managed some cereal without any repercussions.

Once at the race venue I started feeling better. There was a relaxing excitement in the crowd. A friendly atmosphere combined with good weather. My warm up felt reasonable. Not flash, but at least I was moving with any discomfort. Soon enough it was time to line up. I positioned myself towards the front, trying to line myself up so I wouldn't run over the top of the young kids that were being encouraged by their parents to …


We all talk about it. The word is thrown around in so many different contexts. In sport it is often seen as an obstacle to overcome. So what is pain? This isn't the easiest question to answer. The exact definition of pain has been discussed and argued by so many people from so many different view points, that there probably won't ever be an exact definition.

The International Association for the Study of Pain after much deliberation came to a general consensus:

Pain. An unpleasant sensory and emotional experience associated with actual or potential tissue damage, or described in terms of such damage. Note: The inability to communicate verbally does not negate the possibility that an individual is experiencing pain and is in need of appropriate pain-relieving treatment. Pain is always subjective. Each individual learns the application of the word through experiences related to injury in early life. Biologists recognize that those stimuli which cause pain are liable to damage tiss…

Ironman Australia 08 - My Finish

I've just received my DVD from Ironman Australia. Since I have my first race coming up on Sunday (the Mother's Day Classic 8km), I thought a little motivation through reliving a good race wouldn't go astray.

The video posted is a 3 minute teaser that includes a lead in of the overall race before the footage of my finish.

Strength In Weakness

After a couple of weeks on my new program one key benefit has emerged. It highlights my weaknesses. The constant variety in body movements, areas of body worked, explosive versus steady-state work and other demands leaves no room to hide.

A few days have been a bit disheartening as I realised I was a long way off where I thought I would be. However, if I bring the right attitude to my training, then I can only benefit. Training for an Ironman triathlon is a massive task and definitely developed certain abilities to a great extent. The most obvious being pure endurance. Due to the specificity of the Ironman training program I developed certain aspects to the extreme, others were not addressed and a number of attributes have certainly declined. It's now time to give my ego a beating and take stock of my weaknesses.

The List:

Pure Speed
My pace over 40, 60, or 100m is about the same as 400 to 800m.

Explosive Power
Vertical or long jump results are just plain embarrassing.

Upper Body Strengt…

How Does It Look?

What did my first week of training consist of?Monday
Run: 2km warm up, 4km at Threshold pace about 4:26/km, 2km cool down, 15min
stretching (55min)Tuesday
Push Press 33kg, Hanging Leg Raise, Cleans 33kg, performed for time in two
continuous sets of 21 and 9 reps (with warm up and stretching 50min)Wednesday
3 x (Deadlift 48kgx5, Push Ups x15, Run 80m steep hill) with 2:00 rec
between sets (45min)Thursday
am: Gymnastics skills/techniques split as 15min on handstands, 15min front
lever, 15min planche
pm: Swim 400m Time Trial: 6:34
(total time (75min)Friday
Run 10min at VO2max pace (40min)Saturday
Parkour, mixture of vault techniques, rolls, tree pull-ups and climbs, dips
Deadlift 1RM: 80.5kg (30min)TRAINING TOTAL: 5 hours 35min
WORK TOTAL: 62.5 hours