Monthly Archives: September 2013

getting dirty

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This was me at 7pm last night.

I’m not really a run in mud kinda girl (or sand, or stones, or grass). I quite like pounding the concrete. When it was pouring I knew there was a chance we’d be splashing over the fields at training, and we did. In a tempo workout that kicked my butt, I nearly lost a shoe in the mud, but had an awesome time with the ladies in my pace group. We started together and finished together, and I’m pretty sure I talked too much (not enough oxygen made it hard to get up the hill)!

A good workout and I didn’t fall over in the mud, which was my biggest fear. I’m a bit sore today though so glad it is a cross-training day with indoor netball tonight.

BUT how should you clean running shoes?? I rinsed them last night – they were so full of rain/mud I might as well have soaked them in a bucket! I’ve now got them drying over the tub and they’ll be in the hot water cupboard tonight… I think I need a second pair of these!

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reaching the halfway point

I changed things up a bit last week, that being week six in my countdown to the Auckland Half Marathon, therefore now just six weeks to go.

I had been looking into running groups and clubs in Auckland, and came across TempoFit. I wasn’t quite sure I would be good enough to fit in, and was trying to make up my mind. Then, they had a deal on GrabOne. Decision made, especially after a friendly email response when I queried about my current level.

TempoFit is based on three training sessions per week – strength/conditioning, speed/hills and then the choice of a long run or more speedwork. I attended all three sessions this week and loved it. I really need to be pushed to do core exercises so that part of Monday really worked for me. On Wednesday we did a 3km time trial (I did it in 16min 15sec), after doing a 2km warmup. For someone who only a few weeks ago found my total run of 4km a challenge I was thrilled to get through this and not be curled in a ball on the ground!

Saturday I opted for the long run. We were put into pace groups and so I headed out with a couple of women. We did a 13km run through Wynyard Quarter and out towards Mission Bay – it was so windy we actually got splashed by waves! I felt pretty strong up until 10km, the last bit was tough but I got through it. It was good to get some time on my feet (we were running for about an hour and twenty minutes) and it was really nice to chat with some other runners and talk about our goals and reasons for running.

i followed this up with watching the Americas Cup racing on the couch while icing (had to record it due to my dedication and turning up on time to run!).

I really enjoyed my first week of TempoFit and am looking forward to the next five weeks. It does take a bit of planning to get to the different sessions but I think it will be really beneficial for my running.

You can find out more about TempoFit here: http://arunnersguide.com/tempofit

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a high five for highbrook in week five

There is something awesome about managing a cheesy countdown title each week. Pretty stoked with this one, perhaps another high five is needed?

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A busy work week and a slightly aching leg meant I took things easy this week. By easy, I didn’t run at all during the week. The triathlete and I had a windy run on the Saturday along the waterfront. I was not a happy runner that day (am sensing a trend here…) especially with him doing his intervals and leaving me in his dust. I might blame it on jealousy! I did 7km in 43 minutes, and it was tough. The last kilometre I felt like I had concrete feet and was so sluggish. This made me a little worried for the next morning, so like any good runner I did my hair, picked out my outfit and had a glass of wine on the Saturday night.

Sunday morning I was up bright and early and headed out to Highbrook Business Park for the Unitec Run and Walk event. I had moved from the 14km to 7km event and I was really pleased with that as it was really cold and windy! I knew I wanted to finish in 40 minutes and I’m pleased to say I did, finishing in 39.54. As I came over the hill I started sprinting to make it. I finished as the 5th female (of 60)  and 14th overall (of 90) in my event. Once I had recovered we went into town to visit the Auckland Art Gallery and do a spot of shopping. Not a bad Sunday!

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weeks three & four, rolling on the floor

The dream run started to fade a bit over these weeks. My left had started to hurt a bit and I took a bit more rest than I had planned.

During week three I managed two 5km runs and then a longer run of 8.5km on the Sunday. I’d planned to run both Saturday and Sunday, but I ended up helping my parents with their business in the morning (tiring!) and then had my hair done. Priorities!

Week four was a bit different. We ran post-work on Tuesday in the city – and for the second week in a row I had to run up six flights of stairs as the lifts were packed with people being shown through the building and then had people urgently trying to get hold of me to sort out issues. Poor triathlete had to wait outside in the chilly air while I sorted things! I didn’t fit in another run until Sunday, which was actually a good thing. Before the weekend I ‘cheated’ and did a Nike Training Club workout instead of running again to try and strengthen my core.

Sunday of week four perked me up a bit though. I knew I needed to tackle a 10km run. Bear in mind I hadn’t run this far since my pulled-out-of-the-half 10km race last November. I had run 9km earlier this year, and that was the day my IT band freaked out. Bit of a mental challenge to get through, but I knew it was needed! The triathlete had decided to join me for 5km and ended up running the full 10km with me. I knew I wanted to do it in under an hour. With three kilometres to go I was feeling good (we had taken a quick stretch break at 5.5km), but I quickly became angry runner when he decided running across a muddy field was a good idea. It was not. I believe I may have used the word ‘hate’ while dashing about the field to make up my last kilometre!

We did the 10km in 57min 48sec. I was incredibly excited, especially when I saw that meant our average pace was less than 6 minutes. I could even walk the next day, and was feeling okay about the Run and Walk event the following weekend.

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sailboats in the sunshine

sailboats in the sunshine

When this is what you get to see when running after work (or taking a lunch time run), it certainly makes me want to get out there a bit more! It also makes me feel pretty lucky to work right on the waterfront – and then I get to also run along the eastern beaches too!

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a little present for myself

And enter my bonus-time treat to myself… a shiny new Garmin!

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After reading bad reviews of the Nike GPS, and deciding I didn’t want a gigantic watch weighing down my rather small wrist, I settled on the Garmin FR70. Decision made, should be easy now right? Hmm, not so much. Being in New Zealand things often end up costing so much more. I could see the US stores and what they sell them for in USD – so I convert it to NZD, only to find that what it would cost me at a shop here is far more than that. I know it costs more to ship here and it is a smaller market, but I’m really not willing to suck up an extra $100 because of that. So, I bought it from Wiggle. I took a bit of a risk (although the triathlete has made many purchases without any issues) and decided waiting for a Garmin on back-order would be better than paying through the nose in NZ.

And it worked out in my favour! Turns out the back-order warning wasn’t such a big deal and it arrived about 2 weeks after ordering. As I was expecting this to be at least a month I was stoked. I’d decided that waiting for a month was fine with where I was at in terms of training. But now I have it? I’m very happy I do. Still need to sort out my calibration, as it is under-tracking me by about 30m per KM, but that should be an easy fix. I’ve linked it up with the adidas MiCoach foot-pod and heart rate monitor and they are connecting fine.

Am I happy? Yes! I was worried about the size of the watch after running using a Timex IronMan watch (HUGE), but the women’s style is fairly streamlined and sits nicely on my small wrist. I did have a reaction to the watch strap the first time I wore it, but after cleaning it with some slightly soapy water it hasn’t been an issue since.

Do I wish I’d gone for the bells-and-whistles GPS watch? Nope, I’m pretty happy with the data this one can provide, and it is connecting fine with the foot-pod. I also really like the customisable screens so I can see exactly what I want (time, distance, HR, pace) and get rid of those that I’m not too fussed about (calories!).

A good purchase and a great aid to my training. I only wish I had done this before I went to the US!

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