Trials and tribulations of the KSR trail running team.
Mon 8th Apr
After a truly exhausting day on Sunday (couple of hours surf and a quick 45min in the evening), my plan to make my 3hr run as hard as possible got off to a ‘good’ start. I could still feel the previous night’s run in my legs, and I’d had low-carb meals all Sunday, so I was feeling anything but refreshed when the alarm went off. I’ll occasionally eat something small before a morning long run, but I was determined to do it with as few carbs in the tank as possible. I took an ‘emergency’ Endura gel and 500ml of water with me, and prepared myself for what I knew would be a tough outing.
Straight out the door I could tell I was running fatigued. I was breathing hard on the early hills before the trail, which I can usually cruise over in ‘autopilot’ mode. Luckily I’d already decided to hike a number of the tougher hills on the course, trying to mimic what I’d be do on a long race, and get some much-needed hiking practice in. That tactic not only saved me from running out of gas early, it was actually a lot faster than I’d anticipated – adding just 2mins on top of my usual splits at the peak of the Powerful Owl trail (53mins in).
Luckily that’s how the rest of the run panned out, feeling terrible but keeping a solid pace. The wheels started to fall off a bit in the last 20mins, but I was still able to keep the quads pumping. I definitely need to do more of these efforts before July.
Tues 9th Apr
Easy night. 30mins around the ‘hood.
Wed 10th Apr
A really nice easy hour on some flattish local trails. Enough to get the heart rate up on the (short, sharp) hills.
Thurs 11th Apr
I decided to resurrect an old session for this sessions – 6 X hill repeats on my home street. It’s a solid climb, but only 70-80m, so things get pretty lactic! Destroyed my glutes.
Fri 12th Apr
Another cruisy jog, dog-pace (ie. Sprint the first hill, slow to a near-walk for everything after that. My dog cannot pace herself).
Sat 13th Apr
I was supposed to meet up with Caine and Ben for this one. In the end my planned 3hr Coot-Tha run lasted just 2hr 20min – with only 2hrs of real running. My stomach – for no apparent reason – was in a bad way. Though my legs felt really strong, especially up the Jacksonia climb to Channel Nine from Gap Creek.
Sun 14th Apr
An unscheduled rest day. I was still very sick in the stomach, and hoping the previous day wasn’t due to illness.
Mon 15th Apr
Felt a lot better on the Monday, so I improvised a late evening fartlek session in the true spirit of ‘speed play’ – three 10min stretches of easy jog to 10km race pace, with the odd hill surge thrown in.
Tues 16th Apr
A very solid 2hrs to Channel Nine, setting an unexpected PB for my trip to Powerful Owl (48min) – even with some planned hiking training! Reasonably quick on the way home too.
Wed 17th Apr
Surprisingly sore in the quads from the previous day’s effort. Not surprising that the effort hurt, just surprising that I felt it in the quads, which usually escape unharmed from just about everything. Backed off and did 30min at sub-tempo pace.
Thurs 18th Apr
Another shortened hill sprint improvisation on a busy day. Just 15mins of sprint-jog efforts around home. A good lactic surprise after a day in front of a computer.
Fri 19th Apr
Fit in a nice solid 45min on a hilly circuit. Really pushed the downhills on this one, I definitely feel more confident on the descents these days.
Sat 20th Apr
A race – albeit a very short one. Second leg of fourth-placing ASR cross country relay team at Queensland Champs, with occasional ultra runner Chris Adams and 800m specialist Andrew Barralet. I ran 14:08 for 4km – I have no idea what that means on that course. But it felt quick, and my lungs (not my calves) were destroyed, so I guess it was a good session!
Sun 21st Apr
Had a nice 2hour-ish surf to shake of the stiffness, then cruised around for 45mins in the evening. Felt a little tight in the left hamstring (not a regular injury), but not too bad given how much the fast efforts usually knock me around.
Another decent fortnight, save for a little illness (or something) in the middle. My speed work and hills are definitely improving, but it’s time I got out for some longer (4-5hour) efforts and turned the speed down. The 28th is the Mt Mee Marathon, it’s hilly but with a huge downhill, so my descent skills will be tested. Once that’s done I’ll shift gears totally and start cranking out much more miles at a slower pace.