Sunday, December 21, 2008

Racing News

No, I haven’t run a race recently, but there are positive developments regarding two races next year.

The first is the Ballycotton 10 miler in March. This is one of the biggest dates in the Irish racing calendar, and it’s getting increasingly difficult to get in. The application forms went out on Monday 1 Dec, and early Tuesday morning mine was in the post with a cheque. From then on I had to rely on the Kerry postal service, and that’s increasingly getting lousy. The race was sold out within 2 days, and from then on I was getting increasingly anxious about my application. There aren’t any entry lists published yet, but 3 days ago my cheque was cashed, and that’s the sign that I’m in. Good! There are not many other races around at this time of year, and I really felt I needed that race in my preparation for Boston.

And Boston is the other race with news. A few weeks ago I checked out the flight dates and prices, and the cheapest I could come up with was a bit over 600 Euros, but leaving on Monday evening, which would have seen me rushing from the finish line to the airport. I didn’t book it then because I speculated that the falling oil might yield cheaper tickets. Yesterday I checked the airlines again and came up trumps. My flights are booked, cost about 450 Euros and will depart Boston on Tuesday, leaving me plenty of time to celebrate/drown my sorrows (delete as applicable). Great! I’m getting really excited about that trip now.

Saturday is my easiest day of the week, with only 8 easy miles on the program. That is needed in preparation for two harder days, a fast run on Sunday and a long one on Monday. I went out for quarter mile repeats today. The idea with those early in the season is to run them not too fast but with short recoveries, just 100 meters in my case. That’s very short, believe me, and running the repeats too fast will soon teach you a lesson. It was very windy with the occasional shower, which hopefully didn’t have much of an effect. I planned to run them at about 6:30 pace (i.e. in 97.5 seconds), but got worried that the first one at 6:25 might have been too fast and badly affected the entire workout. I needn’t have worried, I was fine for all 15 of them. When I got markedly slower on the 10th I suspected that I was reaching the end of was good for me and should cut it short, but a fast 11th convinced me to finish the workout as planned. In fact, the last 3 were the fastest ones and I felt I still might have had one or two more in me. What was noticeable was that every time I remembered to concentrate on my form I ran markedly faster without increased effort. I wish I could learn that lesson without having to re-discover it again and again. Having said that, I was more than happy with the run.
20 Dec
8 miles, 1:04:26, 8:03 pace, HR 148
21 Dec
9 miles, 1:08:28, 7:37 pace, HR 159
15x400(100 rest) at 6:22 avg.

Weekly mileage: 87


  1. Good gamble! I can't wait to hear about your Boston adventure. No matter what your speed is, the experience will be memorable.

  2. Great news on the ticket front. Yeah, you definitely don't want to leave on Monday - hang out and enjoy the aftermath!!

  3. Hi Thomas. Stopped by your blog. You're definitely getting the miles in.

    Good luck to you in 2009 and in Boston!

  4. I thought you'd give Ballycotton a miss after last year - no decent warmup, time waiting etc. Well done on getting a good deal for Boston.

  5. Glad you've got Boson sorted Thomas. The journey there will be a good one to follow. A 10-mile PB on the way too :)

  6. there are still races where you mail in a cheque to enter? sorry - I find that pretty funny...

    smart move with the flights!

  7. Your patience paid off! Great to hear that both races are paid for and set in the schedule.

  8. Tuesday, fantastic... we'll have to get Mike together and have a pint (or two) post race. Glad to see things are coming together. Keep up the running and Merry Christmas to you and your family!

  9. What plan are you following Thomas? I commend your commitment but wonder if the mileage is excessive? I say that as someone who does well to average 70k a week never mind 90+ miles :-) Mind you on 70K tops a week I've managed a PB at marathon, half marathon and 10K this year so low-ish mileage doesn't necessarily need to be a bad thing. Cheers, Mick

  10. Great news for Boston!

    Will this be your first trip across the pond?