Trials and tribulations of the KSR trail running team.
Since this is my first blog I want to give you a bit of background on my recent running situation and the “lay of the land” so to speak to help you make sense of my future ramblings.
Last year I had a pretty bad hamstring tendon injury that saw me sidelined for about 7 months after my win at the NerangStateForest 50km in May. Many months, loads of rehab and a little too much beer and pizza and I am finally back training properly. I run a 2 weeks hard 1 week easy regime and am currently in the beginning of my base training phase
Well training has been going well so far in 2013, three weeks in and really enjoying the extra time on the trails, in the mountains and that long missed and sorely loved “dead leg” feeling that comes with an increase in kilometres and a couple of 100km+ weeks.
Much to my surprise my speed has come back in spades after a lengthy time off in 2012. On the 15th Jan at the usual Pizzey track session I managed to knock out a set of 1km reps at 3.05-06 min/km pace, which in my books was fast, faster than I usually run and I found the reps just flowed out as my legs, ticking over almost effortlessly…pure magic. However I wish it was the same for my endurance, my quest to break the 3 hour barrier was finally rewarded last week with a 3hr 10 run in the Nerang forest. It wasn’t pretty or fast and I even had to run around some of the hills towards the end to protect the hamstring which was getting angry with me. All in all though I was happy with the run as my aerobic capacity wasn’t really challenged and my nutrition worked well. If I gain a bit more muscular endurance in the legs then Ill be on the right track soon enough.
This week just gone was a very eventful one, especially for a recovery week. I started off with some serious DOMS from an overzealous strength session Monday night that led to the rest of the week being a little too light for my liking. By the time Saturday had rolled around I had arranged to meet the rest of the KSR team for a long run in the afternoon on the Austinville section of the Kokoda course. Being the restless runner I am I decided to head down and do a Park Run 5km in the morning before meeting the boys later that day. I had planned to run at “tempo” pace and not push to hard but as it turned out I somehow pulled out a PB for 5km running 16:01 to take the win at the Kirra event. To say I was surprised is an understatement, I felt like I was running at about 90% of my potential for that distance and even dropped a fast last km of 3.01 feeling good with plenty left in the tank.
That afternoon the team (minus Oliver, he had work) set out for an “easy” 2hr run (4hrs for Ben) over the Austinville range and over to Mt Nimmel. I really enjoy running with the guys, we all run quite well together and the camaraderie makes the time fly by but what was meant to be an easy team run and chat quickly turned into a “Race” up the first big climb. As I write this I realise that I probably sparked this up hill “jostle” off as I was determined not to be beaten by Ben (and his freakishly fast hiking) up the hill when I was actually running. However as usual the wise always wins and towards the top Dave came dancing by capitalizing on our fast start and inevitable fade. With the first climb out of the way and some “zing” taken out of all our legs the rest of the run was at a much more relaxed pace as we traversed the ridge top and then plunged back down the other side to the river.
After dealing with Dave’s near nipple amputation due to a stray bit of “wait-a-while” vine (a very thorny strong vine) at the bottom of the decent we headed off up the road and to the start of the climb to Mt Nimmel. I had never been over this part of the course and was surprised by the length of the climb and slickness of the red clay underfoot. We all ran/hiked up the climb fairly well and did the best to negotiate the fallen trees from the recent storm. Turning at the top we started the long decent back, feeling good Dave, Ben and I all took off down hill leaving Dan behind to bring up the rear. It was on this decent that we nearly lost one of our team members….ME! I stepped directly on a large snake during the decent, not having seen it I continued onward and only turned around on hearing the shrieks of Dave and Ben. When I turned I saw this very large and angry snake making a bee line down the climb straight towards me, I may or may not have screamed like a child…but I did jump the heck out of its way and into the bush to relative safety. After that the rest of the run back to the cars was fairly uneventful thankfully….albeit somewhat punishing culminating in 14km and 1200m of vertical gain.
In summery the last 3 weeks have been solid and given me a good indication of where I am currently at, with at lest another 6-8 weeks of base training ahead I am sure my endurance will catch up to my speed.
28 – 3 Jan/Feb
Distance: 50 km