Saturday, September 26, 2015

Time on our feet

I don't think any of us slept well last night as we were due to head out for a 4-5 hour run this morning at 6.30am - the clincher was that it was the start of daylight saving so 2am became 3am - we were all worried that our clocks wouldn't change and we would miss the start.  None of us did.

It was dark though at 6.30am (what would have been 5.30am) and the tide was high so we planned to run from Takapuna to Murrays Bay on the road and then head on the coastal walkway to Long Bay and over to Okura River.  As the sun came up it became clear to us that it was going to be a stunning day after weeks/months of winter and rain.

We live in one of the most stunning places in the world and as we headed along the countryside from Long Bay to Okura some of the views were stunning.

My anxiety levels were rising today as I thought about the time that we were due to be out for - 4-5 hours is a long time on your feet but as coach Sue reminded me the 50km event may take in excess of 7.5 hours due to terrain so its good for the mind and body to spend a significant time in training on your feet.

We turned around when we could go no further at Okura and at this point we were getting close to having been out for 3 hours.   We were also testing nutrition today and the thought of some of the gels we had with us wasn't appetising - thankfully Sue had some yummy treats that were equivalent to great lollies so I will be looking to purchase some of those before the next long run.

When we got back down to Long Bay beach we decided to take a chance and run back along the coastline - the tide was going out by now so it would be another change of scene and terrain.  What we hadn't anticipated was the slimey rocks - some so slippery it was preferable to wade through the ocean - which actually was very refreshing on such a warm sunny day.

At the 4.5 hour mark, Sue's husband very kindly arrived at Waiake to pick us up - what a relief it was to finally sit down.  

I have to say I was starving at this point so once I got home and had a shower Soph and I walked down to Burger fuel and picked up a burger and kumera fries - absolutely delicious and hardly touched the sides after our busy morning.

What a great morning out with two awesome friends…..Until next time.

Saturday, September 19, 2015

The Devonport Classic

Today was the day of the Devonport Classic - 25km/15km/10km and 5km events.  Thankfully the day (weather wise) turned out much better than we hoped after torrential rain had kept me awake for most of the night - I began to wonder whether the event would be on or not - but good news - it was :)

Helen, Sue and I were all doing the 25km and Soph was doing the 15km.  The 25km started at 8am - I had been worried for a few weeks as to whether I would finish before the cut off - there was a 3 hour time limit which is a little unusual in these types of events.  The course was full of twists and turns, trails and boardwalks as well as loads of hills.

It wasn't long before we were off - there was quite a bottleneck at the start as we wound our way along the Devonport waterfront and then up a number of steps and onto the road/boardwalks.  I saw Sue on the course twice where she reminded me to take in a gel and then Simone was waiting at the 13 km mark to cheer me on - she had decided not to enter this event - so it was really nice to see her on the side of the road and then run along next with me for a kilometre or so before she went off in another direction to finish her training run for the day.

I had an idea of where I needed to be at the conclusion of the first hour and the second hour so was really happy to see I was on target -  that was until we turned a corner to run up North Head at the 20km mark - it is  a really steep hill and all on grass which was very muddy after the heavy rain.  But by the time I ran down the other side I had worked out that from a timing perspective I could walk the last 3km and still make the cut off.  I kept the pace going though and was really happy to finish the 25km in 2.46 - 14 minutes under the cut off - such a great feeling!

It was great to see the others at the finish line - Helen had finished in just under 2 hours (very impressive) and Sue had finished in around 2.20 (also very impressive).  Soph ran the 15 km in 1.35 which I think she should be really happy with as her training hasn't been as good as she had hoped for.

There is now 6 weeks to the Auckland Marathon (Helen is running the marathon and Soph and I are doing the half marathon) - that will be just 2 weeks out from the Tarawera 50km - so at this point I am well on track.

Now i am off for a nap!

Until next time ...

Friday, September 4, 2015

Over or Under?

It was great to catch up with Simone this morning given we had missed running together last weekend.

We had a 90 minute run on the programme today which seemed very short after 4 hours last Saturday. I have to say that it took me most of the week to recover from that long run and a few early nights were needed to bounce back.

It has been a miserable week weather wise with torrential rain and gale force winds so it was a slight relief to head off under grey skies but without the rain.   We headed towards Devonport which is a nice undulating run and then decided to make our way back along the coastline.

Because of the heavy rain during the week the rocks along the coastline were green with slime and very very slippery.  After taking 15 minutes to complete 1 kilometre on the rocks and a nasty fall by Simone, we found a steep staircase which we hoped would take us back up to the road.

It was quite a climb up to the road so we were very disappointed to find that there was a fence that had been put up to stop people going down the staircase to the beach but it was also going to prevent us from getting back to the road.

However, where there is a will there is a way.  Simone very confidently climbed over the top of the fence but I am not so agile and after attempting to go over the top and failing I found another route out - under the fence.  I was absolutely filthy when I got up after crawling out but pleased not to have had to return to the rocky slippery coastline.

We headed back along the road and then Takapuna Beach taking nearly 2 hours in total as opposed to the 90 minutes planned.  Never mind - ultra distance run training is all about time on your feet.

Until next time…..