Friday, December 07, 2007

Central Coast Half - A Tough Day at the Office

I apologise for this report takingan age to come: but as I told you in my last post, things are just manic, and bloggin just always seems to take a back seat. Anyway here's the report:

I love the Central Coast Half. It's just a great race to get together with other Coolrunners on what should be a flat, fast course.

However, I think I'm starting to learn a real lesson about my own body - I wither more than most in hot humid weather - and this was no exception.

Marlz and I had a good preparation: a quiet night at my folks place in Copacabana and Marlz and I left early on the Sunday. We had a good time milling around the registration and chatting, and we hooked up with cliffold - a first time half marathon runner.

The first few Ks were fair, but right from the start I knew the time was not going to be special. We went through 4K in 21:14 according to the Garmin - 5:19 pace, and I was feeling ordinary. At his point I mentioned to Marlz that we might have to slow down to avoid a debacle, and he said "Fine." Cliffold took off, bound for low 1:50s in an excellent debut.

From there it was more or less a slow degradation of pace for me in an attempt to finish in one piece. We got as slow as 6:00/K around 16 and 17K. I possibly could've gone faster, but there wasn't any reason to push: it was too hot and humid for a good time and the smartest thing was just to get to the end in sub 2 hours. This we achieved: 1:58:04 - which is the official time, I neglected to stop my watch. We finished 14 seconds after Doug Lindsay - wimnner of the M80 category (wow!).

In thinking about it I reckon I could've eeked a couple of extra minutes out of it, but truth be told, I wasn't on song. The fact is that we have geared our training subtlely to longer stuff, and that and the conditions will stand as my excuse for a pretty ordinary performance.

Anyway, I'm not given to dwelling on such things, and I've had fun since then. I intended to have a week of slow running after the race, and for the first session I did this, but then I went to the first Summer Twilight Race, excellently hoted by Silver Fox. I caught up with Portrunr at the start (with whom I ran at the start of last years Central Coast Half) and we ended up running a quickish 10 in about 54:08. Portrunr has a couple of kids and it was a pleasure to talk about the challenges of combining training and parenthood for an hour or so in perfect running conditions (i.e. cold and nearly raining).

Then Marlz and I tried our usual fastish 13.5K on Friday, and by the end of the week I was toast. I knew the only thing for it was to take it easy for a little bit, so on the Sunday we went out for a baby long run (16K). I addition I started on daily multivitamins and a protein recovery drink after each run (usually blended with a banana). So far I feel much better.

This week has been thrown into chaos as the twins hav very impotant Catholc sacrements on Saturday and Sunday morning that I can't quite name (OK, the communion is on the Sunday). With other Xmas parties I've been forced to format the week with Tuesday speedwork, Wednesday easy 10K and I got out at 4:30 this morning for 25K in 2.5 hours, so that if I can't run on the weekend it will be OK. If I can sneak in 10K easy on Saturday afternoon that will be great.

So what's next? Well, a whole lot of wedding organisation* and lots of kilometres. I'm still gearing our training towards a shot at the four hour marathon in Canberra, where it is cold in April, just like it is in Bathurst where I nailed my 1:50 half.

* - my Facebook friends might have noticed I've booked a mysterious DH for the wedding. DJ and I are ecstatic about this. I'm not saying anything else about it except to drop a mysterious hint to those who can't figure out who it is:

Any simpleton should be able to work it out.