Saturday, September 24, 2016

Nearly over the hump...

We have nearly reached the pinnacle of training for the marathon. Just 3 weeks left to get those k's in our legs and I'm happy to report that after 5 weeks of down time our Mel is back running with us.
Running Buddy had a change of scenery and ran in the Sydney Running Festival and refreshed her joy of running. Without her I slipped off the plan a bit and waited for her return to hit the road again. A brisk 10k walk with Big Sister was a lovely way to spend the day, with a break for a cafe lunch, but did not add to the km tally for the week. Wet weather in Melbourne had put me off as well.

I need to harden the F up and get on with it.

So we planned to do 34kms along the beach front for our longest run. We all had Monday off so set off to get it done. It was hard. I only got 32 done and Mel back from injury hiatus put us to shame and busted out a 33. I was cross with myself for thinking I could be out running for nearly 4 hours and not get sunburnt and now have a patchwork of differing shades of red skin for my neglect. I was exhausted at the end and sat in a Port Melbourne cafe unable to choose something to eat and drink. The young waitress was very unimpressed by my lament of  'we've just run 32k and can't decide...'

Since then I have run another 2 x fast 8k and attended the You Yangs parkrun launch this morning.

MCR at the You Yangs

this is the kind of running I enjoy and I know I will enjoy running again when this hard slog part of training is done.

Tomorrow is another 28k with the training group and then the tapering begins!

Tuesday, September 13, 2016


Rain has put us off tonight from trying out the pyramid run. With no break in sight from the drenching we are hoping to get it done tomorrow night. I think I needed another day break from the long run we did on Sunday anyway. Although we got the 30km done it was hard and I ended up a little sunburnt from the 3 & 1/2 hours out in the sun. We almost didn't get it done as after just 3km into it I was consumed by a wicked gut ache that felt more like intense period pain than a need for the toilet. My ever patient Running Buddy nursed me through another couple of slow ks until it passed as mysteriously as it had shown up.

But still 30k was tough but showed me we are a bit closer to our goal.

And then I saw this bucket list of running goals and while it is U.S. based I've adjusted it a little to suit my own goals. And it was nice to cross some off the list already.
  1. Trail run in a National Park this will be a goal for next year, after my hysterectomy, I want to pursue some trail runs
  2. Ocean run on the sand Yep did that at Port Fairy and it was glorious and freeing.
  3. Complete a Marathon Gold Coast and Melbourne are ticked off but I still have Paris or New York or Amsterdam or London as an ultimate goal
  4. Serve as a race-day volunteer Yep did that at Melbourne Marathon last year and while it was  a good experience it made me want to run even more. I volunteer at parkrun too, encouraging others to run.
  5. Three generations of runners in one race this one will be particularly tricky for some time, maybe just 2 generations in one race will suffice, Hayley has taken up running so I'm pinning my hopes on her
  6. Sunrise run  We were up before the sun for the last Run Melbourne
  7. Conquer each distance: 5K, 10K, half marathon, marathon done, done, done, done
  8. Run for charity done - Sussan's womens race, Mother's Day Classics, Run4kids, Run for Mental Health and many more
  9. Run with someone completing her first race Yep when we roped Mel into her first Run Melbourne, and she beat me!
  10. Participate in a long distance, overnight relay this one will stay on the list for a while, but going on road trips like when we went to Great Ocean Road was such a fun trip I can imagine it would be just as much fun
  11. Race festively (race-themed attire or tutu and tiara all count) Next Run 4 the kids I want to wear a tutu and hope to rope in Big Sister to make me one
  12. Run Central Park Insert Run a few tourist Parkruns instead. I've done 2 away from my  'home parkrun' at Maryibyrnong and Toowoomba but would like to run some more
  13. Run the Golden Gate Bridge 
  14. Run Big Sky country 
  15. Attend a runners’ retreat
  16. Join a running group Yep joining Melton City Runners has introduced me to some great friends and motivating runners
  17. Complete a trail race Does Hanging Rock 20km count? I'm MCR will help me with this one
  18. Volunteer to support a kids’ running group or after-school fitness program, I'm more likely to encourage others to find the joy of running
  19. Train with a four-legged, furry running companion gonna have to get a dog first...
  1. Never stop chasing the next dream or challenge.
How many can you cross off?

An update on the old blood pressure. While the medication has made me feel better within myself it seems my renal function has deteriorated enough for my GP to message me to say stop taking it while we figure out the next step.

Friday, September 9, 2016

Friday catch up...

I had a couple of different running experiences this week which brings back into focus why I do what I do.

We have been running with a group of strangers in the city that we have been slowly getting to know each Sunday morning getting our long runs done. The group splits into two with a faster group and us in the slower group, We have been getting tips and sometimes more information than we know how to process but we are learning all the time while clocking up the kms. We are able to encourage other similar runners and gain insight from the more experienced. At this stage of my running I am somewhere in between novice and expert.

During the week I ran with the local running group to do a fast 6k. I was able to run part of the way with the President of the group. He had just completed a 100km trail ultra run on the surf coast and treated this quick run as a 'recovery run'. I let him do all the talking although he kindly showed interest in my training plan and then offered advice. Seems that our current plan is a better one than the one we had used in the lead up to the Gold Coast. A plan is a hot topic, I was asked several times which plan we were using and I glad I had something to say, that I was legitimately training for this marathon.

The outdoors proved dangerous for my Running Buddy when she was swooped by a magpie in a local park and ended up with a black eye. Ironically it is one of her biggest fears, along with sink holes, a torment we have to endure each Spring. Luckily she was wearing her sunglasses otherwise it could have been worse and it has shaken her confidence. And she wasn't even running at the time. I was concerned that she may never run outside again but shortly afterwards she posted this pyramid plan for us to try. The plan we are using this time incorporates more than just long, easy paced runs.

My nursing skills have been put to the test this week with my poor husband struck down with the man flu. He must feel really sick as he has allowed me to tend to him, he has even taken the proffered medication and advice. As long as he is not sharing his condition we will get through this.

Sunday, September 4, 2016

6 weeks to go...

Training has been going well in its all consuming way.

We have had several long runs with the Melbourne Marathon training group, which has been a great way to push ourselves. 29k last Sunday and another 24 today. We start in the city and run from anywhere to the Zoo or Sandringham and have been picking up tips from the pacers and other runners. The paths are very busy with fellow runners, lots of cyclists and people out and about enjoying the city. It makes it a bit challenging dodging and weaving but we get to cover new territory and follow the marathon route which will be a bit of an advantage for the event.
Next up is a couple of longer runs before the taper.  We've been putting in about 50k per week and feeling like we are better prepared than previously.
Chris is getting used to the weekends being dominated by long runs or overwhelming fatigue. My battle with my uterus will continue until after the marathon is done, then I'll have to have an enforced hiatus and then back into new challenges next year.

But right now I'm really looking forward to the taper.