Wednesday, 23 April 2014

Marathon 8 - Great Ocean Road #PexRunsGOR

So the work gods have alligned and I will get to run the Great Ocean Road Marathon in 3 1/2 weeks.

No I am not marathon fit.

No this will not be a PB attempt.

Yes I will get to catch up with Greg Smith and have a few beers in Geelong.

Yes I am aware that this is 45km not 42.2.

Yes I will probably suffer and struggle - yes more OUCH.

Yes I am setting mini-goals for the event.

Yes I will be posting photos and race updates via my twitter feed @runpexrun #PexRunsGOR.

My training for the last week has been pretty solid. 800m intervals at around the 4.25 pace mark and my longer runs seem to be much easier. I squeezed in 10k then 16k on Friday and Saturday last week. Then 10k Monday, 6x800s yesterday and another 5k today.

I hope Big M is feeling better so we can knock out a tough session tomorrow. Then I plan to run 20k on Saturday.

2014 Great Ocean Road Marathon Registration Confirmation



Sunday, 20 April 2014

Eddies Journey - My "Dad" Interview

I recently did an interview for my mate Luke Edwards' blog. The blog can be found here - RunPexRun Interview he is a new dad and like with all new dads is coming to terms with his new way of life.

In the blog I crap on a little bit, but the biggest take away part of how fatherhood has changed me is it has taught me to be more selfless. I am happy to give up a lot of things now for my family. Where running has helped is that it is "me" time. I see this as the theme through most running bloggers.

In a weird alignment of the stars, it looks like I might be in Melbourne for work on the same weekend as the Great Ocean Road Marathon - I am NOT in marathon PB shape but I think I could would really enjoy the day running and taking photos of Australia's most scenic marathon. I would have 7 weeks of running under my belt, which is NOT enough but makes for great writing material!

It will be marathon number 8, it 10 marathons has a nice ring to it! The plan is to get to 10 marathons this year and to be in PB shape by Melbourne Marathon in October.

I hope you enjoy the interview.


Tuesday, 15 April 2014

Week 3 Marathon Training OUCH

So training is going pretty well. Nothing too huge in volume just really working myself slowly into shape again. I am working on two things, the first is to ingrain my goal October marathon pace of 5.00min/km and the second thing is to work on my weaknesses (which is endurance).

Generally my week is 4 runs and 3 gym sessions. Runs 1 and 3 are long intervals, either 800m 1km, 1 mile or 2km with 2 minute recovery. Run 2 is at the moment a type of tempo so a warm up then 4-6km at 5.00pace. The idea for run 2 is to get back to running a solid 15km at 5.00 pace. Run 4 is a long run, which at the moment is 15km at 5.20 pace.

Monday - 6km at 5.00pace
Tuesday - 10 x 500s at 4.25 pace with 60 secs recovery
Thursday - 5km at 5.00 pace
Saturday - 15km at 5.20 pace

My idea this time around is not to do any "junk" running - that is for me at 6.00min/km pace. Where I am just cruising along. The main thing is that my gait is terrible at this pace and it just re-enforces bad running habits.

So my longer term goal is to be in 3.30 marathon shape by October. So plenty of longer runs at marathon pace or faster. In the past I have done shorter intervals and thought that they would transfer to good race times (for the 10km and 21km) but in knowing where my running strengths are I should be doing more longer race pace efforts. So for the marathon 15km at marathon pace mid week will be my goal, then a tempo at 1/2 marathon pace plus a speed session plus a long run.

In the past my long runs have also just been "for distance" so I am not stepping up the volume unless I am fit enough to handle it at either 5.20 pace or faster.

Everything else is going pretty well. My new Nike Pegasus arrived this week - so I feel like a marathoner again. My cupboard is full of Hammer Gels, on Saturday I have rejoined the long run group - which has been good.

On the last day of school Hayden ran his first Cross Country at school. As his birthday is the 20th of December he just made it in for the Under 9's, but he ran a sensible race and came in 6th! It was a really proud Dad moment. He ran and had fun with his friends!

I also gave in to the boys and got them a puppy! Milo is the new addition to the family!


At the end of the race!

Happy after the race

Milo and the boys - the new addition

Tuesday, 1 April 2014

Coming Full Circle - Running For Fun

When I first started running I ran to lose weight - it was originally part of my get fit quick campaign before my wedding. Ironically I've been married 9 years on the 2nd of April so this post has some good timing.

I never thought I would travel to all parts of Australia to run in events, hell I didn't even know "fun runs" existed. Because of running I have run in races all across our great land, and have met some of the most genuine and down to earth people in the running community. Runners are special souls.

Because of running Jason and I started HRE and because of HRE we have been able to grow running events in Central Queensland. Runners rate our event - the CQPhysio Group Capricorn Coast Running Festival as the most professional event in CQ. I have been blessed to have found running and runners who enjoy the sport and love to share in others experiences.

During my short lived Ultra Marathon career, I became fixated on results. Somehow I went from just enjoying running to letting it well and truly consume what I was doing. I wanted you all to say how good I was. I wanted to be like the others, the winners. Wanting to be a winner meant beating others, this soon sucked the fun out everything.  

So after 18 months and a lot of self reflecting in the last 3 months, I am returning to endurance running to have fun. I miss the running crew, miss the sharing of training plans and race strategies. Miss dreaming of the world marathon majors. Miss the suffering of failures and celebration of successes. I couldn't care less if I ever finish a local race first or last. From this point forward I am simply going to enjoy my running and training.

It may seem like a back flip BUT this is in no way saying I am happy not to push my limits. So please don't get the two confused. My goals are to become a better all-round runner than I was in 2012, I know I can apply myself and I know my strengths and weaknesses better than ever. My purposeful main change is not to become fixated with results or times. I plan to run 2-3 marathons this year, by October I plan to be in great shape and to run a PB. But my PB is just that, not yours or Jason's or Ben's or anyone else's. If I don't reach my goal, I will keep chipping away at it. 

The message for myself and my sons when they eventually read this is that I want you to be the best you can be, and not to compare your effort with any other person. Your success in life is a reflection on you, not a reflection on me or anyone else. If, and when you find yourself comparing your results, or achievement with others it is time to stop and ask yourself "why am I doing this" is it for some form of external public reinforcement/recognition or is for the feeling of self accomplishment.

In looking back my focus on being "good" at something - in this case running took over and I lost the fun part of why I was doing it. You should have fun with it, it isn't my job, and my times are in no way ever going to mean anything to anyone else. Like I have said before, there is always someone better somewhere.

When I helped out at the Rocky Road Runners opening race a couple of weeks ago, it really reinforced why I started running in events. It was awesome to cheer runners on, first or last place. Encouraging them to push their limits. I missed it.

So as a little motivation for everyone, this is my first full week of getting back on the horse and training for endurance. I have been struggling a little, but enjoying getting out of bed and hitting the road once more. My goal over the next few weeks is to get back to running a 10k in 50 minutes. So I am doing longer intervals at 5.00/km pace 800s, and mile repeats to ingrain that pace. It is hard, certainly hard working against what I am good at (like just sprinting 200m) but it has a special feel to it, my mind has already drifted off thinking about Gold Coast Marathon and Melbourne Marathons. Thinking of the race course, and that feeling of coming down the finish chute knowing you are a marathoner.

I am pleased I spent the time pushing my speed limits last year. It has given me a great insight into my strengths and how I can build a training plan going forward.

I know it will take a good 8 weeks before I have any endurance, I am looking forward to working hard, the grind and the struggle.

"Chase you goals Sean - go full steam ahead, but don't lose sight of having fun and enjoying the moment."

Running is who am, not what I do.