Sunday, January 29, 2017

Sunday Long with the 'Dirty Dozen' - 25ks

Saturday. Cue the opening line- (Seem to be opening each entry with the same). Its 30 degrees, hot and humid and is becoming the norm and whilst I love the heat its becoming tough to train in.
Missed the Park Run due to work but Birchy and Taffy were persuaded to help with a 5k T/T around the park.
After a 2k warm up I was running solo from the start, got to the regular 3k marker on 11.01 but the wheels fell off soon after. Lost over 9 seconds per/k for the final two and felt I was hardly moving come the 5k finish line.
Stopped the clock in 18.38, which in the scheme of things wasn't the end of the world. Taffy looked as if he'd been shot with a  19.56, whilst Birchy couldn't even get past the 2k marker before pulling up stumps.
3ks cool down before retreating to the coffee house knackered once again.

Sunday. Back out with the Centennial Park boys for the first Sunday long run of 2017. Usual suspects and I counted 12 as we set about the first 6k loop that included the likes of Enda, Birch, Brendan Fehon, Leech, C.T, Nick, Super Kev,, Razor, hipster Mitch and some other guru Ben (Strange ?)  Fehon must have been given the book on banter for Xmas as he was very vocal this  morning (even if most of it was utter shite).
Steady pace all around and once 20ks was done old mate Enda was looking for someone to help out with his 8k fast finish. Told him I was good for 5 but once started I was struggling. First of the 5 done in 3.51 but then 3.55 before him and Razor were gone. Held on for the 3rd but then pretty much just cruised the final two of the day.
Still, happy enough with a solid 25ks for the day in 1hr.54 averaging 4.35s
Nice chat with the PRO of the group The Leech over coffee post run, NOT PRO as in professional but PRO as in prostitute as he seems to be on every app going these days and will sell out at any price, even doing the unthinkable yesterday to run the NOTB ... Shame on him. For the record he still thinks Curly is 30 seconds faster than the tough St Peters course.

The heat is set to continue this week, so I'll be back in the pool tomorrow and the now regular Tuesday will be forced to kick off at 6am for the 4th week on the spin.

In the overnight footy, close again with the scoreline but I should have known better to ask the Tin Pot Palace to score a goal when I went 1-3 and it ended zip 3 . Shocking.

Tennis final tonight - my money and my hopes are with The Fed to topple Rafa, A better sports role model you wouldn't find and Aussie Brats Bernie and Nick could well learn a few things from the Swiss Master.


Friday, January 27, 2017

Giggs/Shearer Swim-Off at PAP

No Crossy Lad these days so had to call in the man from the Valley - Taffy Jimmy Matthews to do a few laps at PAP to end the week.
Got there before him (surprise, surprise he was late)  knocking out 500m before we settled on a small set of 200s and 100m efforts. He looked pretty strong throughout sitting on my feet the whole way before we set up a little challenge of 4 x 50m efforts rolling every 60 seconds to finish. Once Taffy had blasted out his 'Land of my Fathers' national anthem we were away.
Pushed hard on each hitting 42-43 for each with Jimmy a few seconds behind.
1800m all done and with the (Ryan) Giggs/ (Alan) Shearer Trophy safely tucked under my arm we retreated in the sun for a much needed coffee.

Pretty solid week of training completed, Tuesday was very hard in that heat, but Thursday was much better. Will try to knock out my long Sunday run this week with 26k +

Quiet weekend planned once more, no premiership footy this week due to the 4th round of the FA Cup, Stoke not involved (preferring to mount a challenge to Europe) and to keep Sammy Agnew happy I'll give the Timmy's Tip prediction to his boys.
Crystal Palace 1 v Man City 3

Have a good weekend
Train well, stay safe

Thursday, January 26, 2017

Straya Day 8 x 800s at Mc Kay Oval

Skippy Day with a public holiday and despite a day off Enda came calling for help and it meant an early start down at McKay Oval.  Just Enda, Birchy and I (The Eastside Social Elites) for the 8 x 800s with the Irishman calling for slightly slower run reps but going off a rolling 3.30 instead of the regulation 4 mins.
At best I can run 2.40s and he wanted them all run at 2.50 for each rep that I thought I could manage, although the shorter recovery would surely hurt later on?
First rep done bang on the money and after that we took it turns to lead each one out. Seemed to work well although Enda seemed to lose track on one with a faster 2.45 at one point.
Delighted to get the 8 done in the manner that I did and with Enda then doing the extra two I jumped in on his last and led him out on his final 400 metres.
Birchy hung in well to complete x10, whilst Enda and myself finished off with a 2ks cool down before we retreated to the cafe for coffee.
Times for the reps. 2.50, 2.50, 2.48, 2.50, 2.45, 2.49, 2.50, 2.49, 78

Great session and even though the pace was down it was still run all around the 3.23 pace for each.

It maybe public holiday but still off the grog, that meant a pretty quiet day for me overall, and dare I say it.... I'm starting to feel better for it.

Will be back out on the bike and a possible swim to end the week tomorrow.


Monday, January 23, 2017

Heat Halts Play.

Whilst the excessive heat continues so does the early Tuesday 6am  morning sessions, and this morning Enda, Birchy and I were joined by a new slimmed down Dave Kane, I think he's shifted the Kgs over to old Gleeso judging by photos received overnight.
Although with us all at different stages of our training we were never going to be running together for long. Birchy and I decided on full laps of the park (3.7ks) Kanser knocking out 3k reps whilst The Honest Irishman was doing all sorts of different reps (?)
Started out strong with Enda running alongside for 2 mins (before he dropped off) as I settled in doing 3.35 pace , pretty much held for 3ks before I felt the pace drop slightly for the tougher final section of the effort. Full loop completed in 13.20 averaging 3.37s but knew then that I'd be doing well to get anywhere near that the 2nd time around.
A break whilst I waited for Birchy all the while hoping to see Enda to help me out (all to no avail) before we were gone again. I got to about 750m in and sweating buckets with the mouth very dry I knew I was goneski. Made the quick decision to then back off and try to help Birchy out by holding a steady 4.05 pace. He was struggling as much as I was but fair play to the lad he dug deep and saw it out as we crossed in 14.58 averaging 4.04s
Worked beckoned that prevented a 3rd lap although did do an extra 6ks albeit probably no faster than 6.50 per/k pace that suited me just fine.
Warm up with Enda included I was good for 15ks for the morning.
These sessions are tough enough at the best of times, but when you factor in over 30 degrees as early as 6am then its a killer. Don't ask me how people can get out in the mid day heat with temps hitting over 35..... I think it's just bonkers to be honest.

Headed down to PAP later in the morning and the pool was the perfect place to be. A smaller set done and was happy to get a swift 1800m knocked out.


Sunday, January 22, 2017

St Peters Park Run 17.58 - 6th.

Still warm but a more pleasant morning as I managed to get to Park Run St Peters in time with the Leech also fronting despite a couple of sick kids in tow.
The resident 'Geek' Chinese Professor Student was lining up as well (sub 17s) and when he and another 4 flew of I wasn't too concerned and was intent for the day just to work from Leechy Boy. First 1k is fast and I spot 3.22 on the watch with Eoin already a good 5 seconds ahead. 2ks comes at the top of the hill and I'm blowing hard but really try to work the downhill as to not lose that much time. Happy with a 3rd K sitting just over 3.30s and its normally here that it goes pear shaped. I had two guys come past me about 1.5ks in the race but somehow reel them back in at the 3.7k marker that keeps me focused at least throughout the tougher moments. Seemed to struggle once I pass them though and come the 4k marker I'm trying to do the sums in my head to see if I'm still on for the sub 18 mins that Ive been after for ages. You get the regular dog fight as you try to pass the slower runners on the 2nd lap but once you turn off for home it was time for one final kick down to get to the line. I stopped my watch with 17.59:56 so I knew it was close, and wondered what would come officially ? Very happy then when they posted a 17.58 that is my best in the short time I've been doing the Park Runs.
Said many times, its a tough course and I stand by Curly (Curl Curl) is at least 30 seconds faster so that bodes well for when I do decide to head NOTB.
Leech run strong - 17.35 for the day so a good 20 seconds ahead but I was never close to him at any stage after 500m

So happy with that and i think this NO booze may be helping?  I'll stay with it now until Mid Feb to see what a good 6 weeks can bring.

Sunday. Managed to convince the Taffy Lad Jimmy Matthews for a swim at PAP, Pretty easy set and knocked out a cruisy 1400m, Good effort from the Welsh Boyo especially as he's not been in the pool for at least 6 months.

In the footy, it was a case of oh so near with my 1-0 scoreline. Would have been spot on had the referee not found an extra 5 minutes of play from somewhere, What a Joke. To use my mate Aggers favourite quote 'We Woz Robbed'
Talking Sammy Agnew, I'm seriously worried for him and his team. The poor club is in tatters (must be bad when Sammy doesn't even talk about it) and relegation is a real concern. Looks like the Championship beckons for next August?
On the plus side at least he'll be allowed back into the 'Mediocre Cup Comp' with the lads Enda (Villa), Taffy (Cardiff) , Heyden (QPR), and Tommy H (Newcastle).... albeit in the lower tiers.

Leech at 1.2ks already a good 5 seconds ahead.
Bucket head and sandal man came past me soon after but luckily I was to put him back in his box at the 3.7k marker


Thursday, January 19, 2017

Swimming and Cycling.

Wednesday. ..... And it just keeps gets hotter. Late 30s again today so took the opportunity of a double swim set. Down for the lunchtime session and had to return in the evening for work so managed a 2nd one to bring the days total to 3.8ks

Thursday. My regular swim partner/mentor was back after the Xmas break so teamed up for a tough set. Shoulders were already sore but worked my way through to 3.5ks in total. Was ready to get out upon hitting the 3k but then told I was still to do another 2 x 200 & 4 x 50m hard that just about broke me.
* I missed the first 100m of the 2nd 200m rep.

Friday. A nice and welcome change in the weather and got my bike.. Obama (Its Black & Powerful) back out for a few laps around the park. I love my bike but its been a while. A few real easy laps and then decided on some fast (single) laps to see what I could knock out. Managed to hold under the 6 min per/lap but was working hard enough to do so.
Returned home with over 40ks done.

Weekend is here again, and will try to fit in the St Peters Park Run in the morning.
 In the English footy the big game of the week comes from the 'Brit' where Stoke entertain big boys Man Utd. They don't come no tougher, but I really do fancy the boys to lift this week in what could be a banana skin game for the Manc lads.
Timmy's Tip. Stoke 1 v Man Utd 0 .... and I may be dreaming but get on Peter Crouch to bag his 100th premiership goal that will send the crowd bonkers and see everyone doing the 'Robot Dance' in celebration.

Have a good weekend
Train Well, Stay safe

Monday, January 16, 2017

Centennial Park 3 x 3ks Reps

P.Birch and E.Stankard were called upon to help out this morning for the tough 3 x 3k reps within the park and my initial thoughts that it didn't seem as warm soon diminished once I had even warmed up.
Enda was once again doing his 4k reps to my 3 that worked well as his pace was slightly slower that enabled us to run together and although 3.45s was perhaps a tad slower than I wanted I was more than happy to just sit in with him in such conditions.
Pretty much cruised the first although you'd not think so judging by the sweat dripping off me, an easy 700m float back to the start line and Enda had picked up Irish mate 'Podge' PLOD (Paul O'Doherty) along the way who agreed to join us for the 2nd of the reps. Straight away the competitive juices kicked in between the pair and I was just happy to sit off them for the first half of the 3ks. Was moving OK at this stage and actually overtook them for my final 500m as I stopped the clock in 11.05 with PLOD a few seconds behind taking the same route.
A good chat with PLOD on recovery before we were set for the tougher 3rd rep and it went a lot quieter for the next 11 minutes as it was a case of just getting it done. Struggled to stay with the boys coming through the 1k marker but got stronger as it went on and like the 2nd rep I was able to kick it home with a good 500m to go pretty much repeating the previous.
Rep times. 11.15, 11.05, 11.04
Great session to do and hopefully the big tall lanky streak of pishe will join Enda and myself for more as it does help big time especially in the heat and humidity.
Had to shoot straight off after for work with another 6ks as a means of cool down with client, not before seeing Kanser and his kids who nearly killed my whilst riding on the bikes on the footpath.
17ks for the morning all up.

36 degrees again tomorrow, can only mean one thing - PAP swim.


Sunday, January 15, 2017

STaR - Ten Bridges Run 27.3ks

Second week on the spin with the Striders STaR team with the only difference being Razor Wareham replacing C.Low.
Met us with Renaud, C.T, Leech and one young lady Eleanor (80 min half) who the Leech was keeping an eye on plus a couple of others that I didn't know, out Lane Cove way for the 10 Bridges run that seemed to take us over half of Sydney. Very sticky again and with a tough first 3ks  we past through Wollstonecraft and I was sweating early doors. By the time we crossed the Harbour Bridge at 8ks I knew I was struggling and would be in for one hell of a tough morning.  Through Pyrmont beside the fish market and then over ANZAC bridge was next up and whilst the boys were counting down the bridges I was counting the water bubblers and where/when the next one was coming.
Iron Cove came and went in a blur as we headed to Gladesville and just as I asked the Leech how far we had done on 1hr40min I was a broken man at the 22k marker. Got dropped on the climb up and by the time I was descending the boys were out of sight. Totally disorientated coming off the bridge I missed my turning and found I was back up on the other side heading back into the city... nightmare.
Got out the trusty map I collected at the start only to find I had picked up the 10k version that was to prove as much use as an astray on a motorbike as I was in struggle street.
Walked/Run aimlessly before two fellow Striders came to my aid as we then saw out the final 4ks together. Reckon it must have taken me the best part of 50 minutes to complete the final 6ks and by the time I had returned the boys were finished and no doubt tucking into the Sunday bacon and eggs.
If I thought last weeks run was hard this was twice as difficult especially with the heat and over a 700m elevation. Still another one banked, and should be happy with the 22ks at 4.45 pace before I actually bonked.

Well earned rest day tomorrow as I feel physically and mental shattered at the moment.


Thursday, January 12, 2017

Rushcutter Oval 800s

Thursday. Warm again but it didn't stop a big crowd from heading to Rushcutters Oval for the 800m set with the highlight being speedster  Kevin Batt making a rare appearance.
Struggling with little enthusiasm at the moment but managed to stick close to the front runners for the first rep coming in on 2.38
Second and third rep started to feel it a little and come the 4th I was goneski, that bad in fact I only lasted 400m of it and took the longer recovery. Came back in for the 5th but it was similar to the previous. Thought I'd get through one more but the motivation was gone by then and once again only lasted 400m for the 6th and final rep.
Times were: 2.38, 2.41, 2.42, 78, 2.42, 78

Friday. Basically a repeat of Wednesday with very hot temps all across Sydney so it was back to the pool to end the week. I did a 700m warm up and once Crossy Lad had finished his selfies and told me all about eating his kids candy, lollies and chocolates we were set to go. Basically 300, 200, 100 x 2 with the 2nd faster than the first followed by  8 x 50m reps to end.
Felt pretty good for the set and wasn't too far behind Crossy on each. Soft Award of the day goes to the 'Shire Head' though who only managed 6 of the 50m reps - excuse, "I'm doing a 3k track event this evening". Very lame.
2.3ks done for the day.

Like to say a busy weekend, but I'm still on my DRY January so I think its a quiet one. Am venturing out to see the 'Invincibles' tomorrow in the A League when Sydney F.C play cross town rivals Greater Western. doesn't really thrill me but at least I get an understanding what poor Sammy Agnew has to witness every week when he watches Crystal Palace as I reckon the standard will be similar?
In the big game back home Stoke travel to the North East and play Sunderland. Tough old fixture and with many of our players away in Africa it could be a banana skin game.
Sit on the fence with this one.
Timmy's Tip. Sunderland 1 v Stoke 1

Will head out in the morning and do the Park Run and try to back up for the longer Sunday run the following day.

Have a great weekend
Train well and stay safe

A swim is not a swim if Crossy doesn't bring his camera and stand posing for 25 mins before the set starts, I sometimes can manage to get in one of them at least.

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

Girl on the Train.

Nigh on 40 degree day predicted so was out early once again although only did an easy 8k with clients. Did see a lot of familiar faces in the park with the likes of Enda, Birchy, Jeet and the shirtless Branagon Brothers all flying around. Even going easy pace I was still sweating buckets once done before retreating to the cafe and joined by Jeet for my mornings coffee.

True to form the heat came by lunchtime so it was a no brainer where to be? So when Crossy made the call it was off for a dip at PAP. Poor bloke is getting that old these days he's forced to get the train from Town Hall the one stop to Central and I'd already done the best part of 1k by the time he arrived. Bashed out 200m reps, tried to do my turn on the front at various times but was struggling towards the end and a 3.12 was about as good as it was going to get for the day.
Happy enough with 2.2ks for the session, think I was happier just to stand in the water and admire the fine sights that Sydney has to offer on days like today.

Will be back out for a speed run set tomorrow again, hopefully it will have cooled down by then?


 *** for the record - Yes, Crossy Lad did also catch the train back to work on his return leg.

Monday, January 9, 2017

Centennial Park 3k Reps

Another 30 degree day planned so had already decided to get the session done early doors and when Enda Stankard came calling I was only to happy to help out.
The Irishman had a 4k set down whilst I only had 3k reps to do but worked well as he had to return to the starting line each time whilst I went forward the extra 700m as a floating recovery. After waiting an age only for a no show from 'Larry Let-down' (Kanser) we were joined on a warm up by C.T before getting ready for a start under hot and humid conditions.
Tough session this and from early as the 1k mark I was happy to have Enda as company as we basically just sat on 3.40 pace the whole way. The final 500m is slightly up-hill that makes you work harder but happy enough to cross out in 11.01 with Enda continuing on for a further Kay.
A real easy float back to the start for a repeat 2nd effort and was more than happy to sit on Enda's shoulder pretty much for the best part of 2.5k before I sensed he was dropping a tad. Took the lead and made sure I maintained the 3.40 efforts to stop the clock in 11.02
With messing around at the start it meant I was pushing for time to get a 3rd rep completed so unfortunately I had to call it quits after the 2nd. Although in truth I'm not sure I could have maintained the same effort & time for a 3rd rep and poor Enda looked like he was in the hurt box when I saw him with 1000m to go on his final rep.
Did this same session over the Christmas break with times of 11.46, 11.15, 11.04 so my two at 11.01 and 11.02 shows some improvement that I'll happily take.

Rushed off once done and worked another 6ks with a client at a real easy pace to cover best part of 15 for the morning.
Good session and dare I say it ..... It was good to have Enda by my side to help out.

Hot day tomorrow so I presume I'll be back in the pool, just hope Crossy Lad can join the party otherwise he may be getting the flick as I've heard another 'Trash' fan is waiting in the wings to come to the Lindop swim club? More details tomorrow.


Sunday, January 8, 2017

Monday Swim but where is Crossy Lad?

Stunning day in Sydney but despite the warmer weather it wasn't enough to coax Crossy Lad out from his winter slumber that meant I had to go solo down at PAP.
Like the running the swimming has suffered over the festive period so was keen to get a proper set done even if it wasn't speedy. Just tipped away at it knocking out 4,3,2 and 100s until I'd done 2.5ks all up.
Felt great once done and dried off in the sun catching up on the English footy news.

Back out tomorrow for running and will aim to do some speed work, wonder if it will be warm enough to get Crossy back for his first session in 2017?

Big News, I've just celebrated 7 days ..... NO drinking, I'm on a roll. Nearly bloody killed me yesterday though not going out for my regular Sunday session.


Saturday, January 7, 2017

STaR Long run 27ks

Out for my first decent long run of the year, in fact it was the longest I've done for months and apart from the New York Marathon I can't remember doing anything over 25ks for the best part of 6 months.
Decided to head over to do the Striders STaR run that was starting at Woolwich Pier and along with C.T, Leech, Renaud, Champagne Charlie, Jac we were soon on the way with Keith 'Buzz' and Chris Jackson also close by.
Its not a STaR run if you don't get lost about a dozen times and as early as about 3ks we were taking the wrong route as we headed up through Hunters Hill. A good deal of trail running soon followed that was the first test even if the pace was kept relatively easy. Down onto Scribbles that is part of the Striders Lane Cove 10k races that was a nice relief on familiar ground before we really did get lost on the next section of trail. Seemed to be going around in circles as we headed up to 20ks and at this point I was starting to feel the effects of no long runs.
A quick water stop at the garage and Charlie proved to come good when he came out with much needed Coke, got going again soon after but really seemed to labour home for the best part of 5ks.
The GPS packed in at 24ks, and had to rely on the Leech to give me the info that we covered 27.5ks in 2hrs;14 mins for the morning averaging 4.56s
Certainly not the quickest but when you take in the hills and trails (not to mention the stop/starts for getting lost) I was more than happy to spend that long on my feet.
Wrecked at the end though and whilst the rest of the team went for a nearby dip in the water, I could only muster spreading my large frame on the ground whilst getting the cokes and lollies into me.
Finally recovered before shouting the guys a morning coffee in the up market Woolwich area.
As tough as it was I really enjoyed and will be doing more of these STaR runs throughout the summer months.

Need to kick start the training again this week so will be back running on Tuesday and have a swim lined up for Monday

Tuesday, January 3, 2017

Midweek Easy Ks

Early start and just covered 7ks first up solo and also with a few clients that I saw floating around. Very easy pace before catching up with Birchy for a further 5ks.
12ks in total and good to be back out turning the legs over at a reduced pace. Need to start getting some focus back into the training program especially for the next 6-8 weeks.

Monday, January 2, 2017

More Holiday Training

New Years Eve -  Kamay Park Run 18.58
Headed out to La Perouse for a NEW Park Run that has been added to the ever growing list. Not sure why its called Kamay when its in La Pa but I'm sure its to do with the Indigenous locals so we'll go with that?
Felt terrible even before the off and in truth it was a bloody stupid idea to run, but seeing I made the effort to make the start line I thought I'd give it a go. A smaller crowd with perhaps only about 90 starters and apart from 'Robbo' I didn't really know anyone else.  Course is a 2 lapper and I just settled in with Robbo for the first of the two laps with the front two runners about 50m ahead. Was pretty much struggling as early as the end of the first lap (although you wouldn't know it by the photo), but on the first climb for the 2nd loop Robbo just broke away and I was cactus once that happened.
Really just laboured for the best part of 2k to basically crawl over the line with a time of 18.58 in 4th overall.

Some pics from the morning.
Robbo and I hamming it up early on the first loop.
Even leading him around as we head out for the 2nd loop.
Didn't last for much longer though.
Don't know why I do these tough Park runs with massive hills ?
Course is FULL of hills

Tuesday 3rd Jan 2017 - 4 x 2k Centennial Park
After a massive 2 days to see in the New Year I was back out with Birchy in the park for 4 x 2k reps that I was dreading from the start. Did a session on the bike beforehand and the aim of today was just to survive.
I have a good course marked out but the first 500m sees a nasty climb before levelling out before getting the downhill back to end each rep. Obviously just the two of us meant neither had much help whilst running and by the 1k mark I was hurting. Crossed out holding 3.39s for a 7.18 finish.
Second rep was slightly faster and somehow held the 3rd to a similar time as the first.
For the 4th I took the easier option and decided to keep Birchy company as he was happy to hold 4 min/ks
Times for the day. 7.18, 7.14, 7.17, 8.02

Caught up with Kanser once done who joined Birchy and I for coffees and the old boy is looking pretty lean as all roads lead to Tokyo. Still think he'll be doing well to break 3 hrs but fair play to him.

Been saying it all Xmas but these sessions are getting tougher, not helped with the constant alcohol intake over the past fortnight. Thinking it may be time for a 'Dry Spell' until early March and try to lift the level of fitness till then?

Been so busy lately but the 2017 predictions will be coming before the end of the week