"It's a treat being a runner, out in the world by yourself with not a soul to make you bad-tempered or tell you what to do." - Allan Sillitoe

Friday, August 21, 2009

Medium long run and an interesting experiment in warming up

Yesterday (Thursday), I met Simon down at Burswood for a medium long run around the long bridges loop (18.4km for me). Although we mostly ran at our usual conversational pace, there was a bit of a headwind along the city side of the river which shut us up for a while and then when we got over to the South Perth side, we had a bit of a tailwind which was all the encouragement we needed to crank it up a little. I took a split using the 37-38km Perth Marathon marks and we were going at right on 4.00/km.

All up for me 1 hour 17 or 18 mins, I got to the meet point slightly ahead of Simon and jogged around for a bit so average pace between 4.11 -4.14/km.

This morning (Friday), Rox and I headed out together, Rox for her regular 30 mins and me for 8.4km recovery run. I ran with Rox for the first 15 mins until she turned to go back and then continued on by myself. Despite the fact that I had run a bit slower when running with Rox (HR 110-112) I still did my 8.4km in 47 mins with an average HR of 12o. So same time, average HR 8-10 bpm lower than normal. The only change from normal being a slower start and presumably a quicker rest of the run. Normally I just run the same slow pace all the way on my recovery runs, so this unscientific case study suggests to me that even at well below what could even be called sub maximal effort, there is a benefit to starting slowly ie warming up. (Average HR of 120 also suggests that I am going OK as far as building endurance and running at below threshold pace).

Tomorrow I will be running with Sandgroper for a longish run (approx 2hrs) in John Forrest National Park. SG has run there a bit lately and apparently it is a pretty challenging climb. Even though the distance might be slightly below what I have scheduled, I don't think the effort level will be but in the event that I do feel a bit underdone, I will probably just go for a short recovery run late in the afternoon.

Despite the fact that we came back well in the cricket last night, I think we are in real trouble. That pitch is an absolute disgrace for a first day test wicket. It will be turning square by Day 3 and we have to bat last on it. We need to get the final 2 wickets quickly when play resumes and then try and get a decent lead on first innings. It will be hard to make more than 200 in the last innings on that wicket.

World Champs Marathons this weekend. My picks are Jaouad Gharib in the Mens and Kara Goucher in the Womens. It will also be good to see the Aussies run well, especially the blokes who I think have been hard done by selection wise in recent years. I would love to see the Americans Nate Jenkins and Matt Gabrielson run well. These are guys who are not in the really top tier in the US but have got some great results through force of will and hard work. I hope it pays off for them. Despite the fact that it is a Championship marathon, I think the flat fast course and the way the Olympic marathon was run and won, will make for a quick time - sub 2.07 minimum I reckon.

Apparently, the forecast for the City to Surf is for fine, sunny weather. No wind would be good too as I am feeling ready to rip up the course.

In other, non sport related news, I have managed to get a promotion at work. Whereas the job I am in now was just a 12 month contract, this new job is a permanent appointment. I think I will be moving into the new role pretty soon - another work/life/running balance challenge to overcome.