Three weeks to go!

Mid ride banana smoothie at the Cog cafe in Warburton

Mid ride banana smoothie at the Cog Cafe in Warburton

Just a quick check in – life has been pretty hectic since getting back from NZ, and between family, work, socialising (yes, despite my training schedule, I do have friends!) and training, blogging has had to take a back seat. It’s so close I can smell it – just three more weekends between me and the TNF100 start line. Things have gone relatively well – lots of mileage in NZ, and the body is holding up ok. Well, when I say ok, I do have a bit of a niggly achilles tendon coming off the back of last week, where I put in roughly 62km over the weekend – no pain, just a bit of discomfort and stiffness, and hopefully it will sort itself by 16 May.

I think I’ve finally come to accept that, injury prone as I am, there’s a pretty high chance of something being wrong with me just prior to my major event each year. On the bright side, the timing isn’t too bad, as this weekend just past was a cross training week on my schedule, with minimal running and some good time on the bike and elliptical. This has hopefully given the achilles a bit more of a chance to settle.

The only thing I haven’t quite done as much as I’d have liked in the run up to this race, is some speed work. The only form of this I’ve done all year, is playing “Zombies, Run!“. I was really hoping to get some decent hill repeats in over April, but between my grumpy achilles tendon and a nasty cold, all my runs have been at an easy pace. Still, I reckon I have a shot at making it round the course in under 20h, especially after managing to clear the 70km loop round the Kepler track in under 12 (something I have to get round to blogging about soon!).

As has been the usual in every one of my annual major events, everything seems a little borderline. Not necessarily a bad thing – if I knew I could do it for sure, where’d the fun in that be?

The past three weeks in kms..

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8 Responses to Three weeks to go!

  1. my26pointtwo says:

    Your mileage is something us mere mortals can only aspire to ever achieve. I really hope your niggles evaporate before your big day. Healing vibes and all that!

    • Thanks! Anyone can go long – it’s just a matter of slowing down, taking lots of walking breaks and switching the brain off. Having awesome scenery helps a tad too. Running a sub 20min 5k on the other hand, is certainly a feat, and from your recent park run it looks like you are well on your way there!

      • my26pointtwo says:

        Really and truly I have the utmost respect for any one with the mental fortitude to continue to push themselves across vast distances. There is no talking down the achievement. Last year I had the honour of accompanying an ultrarunner friend of mine on the last 7 mile leg of an annual 50 mile event held locally, which happens to run right past the end of my road. He was almost delirious due to the heat, but with one mile to go I made the mistake of saying can you see that guy up ahead? Is he in the race?

        He was off like a shot and despite tired legs and an even more tired mind he caught and passed the competition with only a few yards remaining. I got to cross the line with him, me panting and puffing even more than he was after a sub 7min final mile. Now that’s just not human after that amount of distance. But in true hero fashion, the first thing he did was turn to me and say “you ok? well done”. Seriously the guy is an athlete and a gent and I have a feeling it is quite common in the ultra community. Awe intact.

        I cant lie though a sub 20min 5k would be incredible too!

      • I certainly wouldn’t be able to pull a sub 7min final mile on the back of a 50 miler, but I will second your thoughts on the ultra community. Road marathons have, for me anyway, become a crowdfest of runners in headphones, charging along in their little bubbles and focused on their own PRs. Alone in a crowd. Nothing wrong with that of course, it’s a thrill to run in the zone, and I do like to test myself on a 42km course every now and then. In ultras though, I’ve found that everyone wants everyone else to do their best, and if you’re in trouble, the next person who passes by will almost certainly stop to assist. On top of this, every person you pass or who passes you will say “hi!” at a minimum, and if you’re a tail end of the pack runner like me, it’s more than likely you’ll get a conversation and a new friend each time.

  2. usabaker says:

    Wow, you ran like that with a Achilles tendon issue! amazing… Hope ill be able to run even close to those numbers someday.

    • If you really want to, I’m sure you’ll be able to. The formula is really simple – patience and going slow. To oversimplify it a little, if you ran 7km a day for 10 days, that’s like a really slow 70km run with lots of long breaks in the middle. From there, it’s just a matter of reducing the size of the breaks, until you fit the distance into whatever time you wanted to. Whatever it is, build the mileage up gradually – that’s a gem of advice which I never follow, which is why I seem to be perpetually injured!

      • usabaker says:

        When I get back from the Philippines I should be ready to run my first half marathon – I’m still working toward my Disney 2016 goal where I will have to pull off a 5k, 10k half and full marathon in a 4 day period on race per day. But still I’m in awe of you guys! You make it look so easy.

      • That’s an awesome goal, and no mean feat! I’ll be following your progress keenly.

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