The Middle Ground

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04/02/2013 at 12:48

Just wondering how Trafford 10k compares to Abbey Dash (Trafford is March10th this year). Last year was won in 29:04, quite a bit faster than Leeds: however the athlete could be better! The only person who was at the sharp end of both races was Abu Rezeq from Altrincham: 3rd at Leeds (29:49) and 6th at Trafford (29:51). Too many variables to compare, I guess, and weather can be a factor with one being early winter and the other early spring. Abbey Dash has a bigger field and therefore is busier, and obviously will have more runners sub 32/33/34/35 or whatever. But busy means more traffic, particularly at the start...which can be a good thing for some runners!

If anyone is looking for a March 10k, though, Trafford must be up there as a possibility. Hope Hilly/BR pop in with their thoughts as I think they have done both.

04/02/2013 at 13:14

Alehouse – Trafford is on my radar as is Salford, a few weeks later I believe. As always my attendance will depend on family commitments etc.

There is probably very little difference between these fast courses, one might suit one runner more than the next I suppose, some like out and back, some might like pan flat but dont mind turns etc.
The main thing that propels the AD to the top of the leader board for most sub 32:xx (or whatever it was) is the size of the thing. 8,000 runners last year I believe + the weather conditions have been very good at the AD over the last three years, not a breath of wind and cool on each occasion.
I might be tempted to say Dewsbury is a slightly faster course than the AD, but it has been windy both times I have run it.

A better measure might be % of the total field under a certain time: categories could be something like % under 30 mins, 33, 35, 37, 40, 43 and so on……

Again plenty variables to skew things, but might give a better indication to the quality/speed of the course by taking the size of the event out of the equation

Edited: 04/02/2013 at 13:16
04/02/2013 at 13:21

YD - Trafford is the same day as Spen 20, which you may wish to consider for your bigger picture thinking. You clearly have nothing to prove to yourself over 10K in the near future so a hilly 20 may be a better option.

04/02/2013 at 13:45

Stevie G - I will certainly be more streetwise for any mass walk to the start line in future!  I was trying to frantically keep up with someone who was holding up a 40-45 minute marker which added to it all. Not that it mattered too much though as I always like to count my chip time over gun time as I am never going to straddle too far up the startline in reflection of my ability.

On another subject, I had a sneaky look on your thread and saw you make reference to the following runner...

There was an interesting article on him last year in RF magazine and it made very interesting reading with the key motive of the article focusing on how prolific he is at entering races. The article looked at whether being so prolific a racer was actually costing/costed him from being an even faster and more successful athlete (his aim as he stated in the article is to win as many races as he can). Certainly not coming from me, but the article referred to how other runners were critical of his approach since he often targets winnable races where the quality of the field is not strong. I say good on him if that's what his motives are. I believe he ran the Brighton marathon last year the day after running in something else (relay???) which doesn't show on his PO10 page but was also referred to in the magazine article. He is very much a big influence for many runners down here though and he's also won the Gosport half 3 times in all.

Curly - I have seen the photo's - one in particular is a proper gurn!  I have much worse from when my knees have gone in the past and the photographer still feels obliged to take the most horrendous photo! However, that's what I asked for when running at a pace I had not built up to properly!

Talking fast 10k's - I do think that Eastleigh has a slight edge over Chichester. The key difference is that the incline at Easteigh at 3-4k is longer and more gradual but the decent which immediately follows is more or less a mirror image straight after once turning to the left at the roundabout at the top of the road. Last year was a strange day weather wise though as it got up to 25 degrees (amazing to think it got that warm so early on and what with how the rest of the year turned out ).  Another fast one I have raced in previously includes the Swansea Bay 10k....I ran this on a good day where there was no wind, sunshine and temps about average for late September...I could imagine it would play havoc on a bad day whatwith the route running close to the coast on the way out and along the coastal path on the way back...although in saying that, the 5k on the way back should in theory be faster than the first 5k if any strong winds were to come from the prevailing south west!

Edited: 04/02/2013 at 13:48
04/02/2013 at 14:39

WFH, very interesting, I didn't know that chap was so well known. I literally stumbled upon his name by entering Chichester 10k Power of 10 into google.

He got down to some terrific times, and he reminds me of my old high finish/pot hunting ways (though I'm clearly way less prolific and slower!).

But you have to think he could have got faster, without racing most weeks, at presumably a hard effort. But then it sounds an "old school" method to race every week.

Interesting too on Eastleigh.Sounds flatter then if the incline is more progressive. And presumably that's it?

I think thefastest of the lot would be Dorney Lake...if it had a qualit field, rather than the likes of me coming 12th, wasn't in mid July, and wasn't windy

8,000 at Leeds? Wow! Chichester was 1,666

04/02/2013 at 14:44

You are right prf, isn’t the Spen 20 full?

04/02/2013 at 14:49

YD - The Spen 20 is never full. It is the Yorkshire Championship but generally you just enter on the morning for about a fiver.

04/02/2013 at 15:00

It’s the Liversedge Half that is full, I got my wires crossed! Near enough the same course

Edited: 04/02/2013 at 15:02
04/02/2013 at 15:17

I was commenting on the quality of the field to some friends today - it really is crazy stuff for me to have been 297th overall, but 48th woman Brilliant but crazy. I'd love to do it again when more in the mix as I expect some seriously good racing went on at the front end of the women's race!

Duck need to find a date to do Dulwich but yes that is on the radar. Surrey XC this Saturday though, last of my XC races for the year except club stuff so looking for a hard run rather than anything of importance.

Sounds like you needed a relaxing weekend to me

Mr V any news or updates?

I dont believe that Eastleigh can be faster than Staines if you fancy some pot hunting Stevie (34:45 would probably get you third place!)...and its only £12

04/02/2013 at 16:06

But what would 34:43 get me Curly? Apart from the award for best pallandrome race time

Datchet Dashers are using it as a club event this year, and they've got a little gang of 4/5 who can probably get sub that time. That'll reduce this year's pot hunting there!

Had a close up of a couple of the women at the front. Clearly Steph Twell is more PP's league than mine, but was about 10secs off 2nd, and got to experience very closely how loud Lady number 3 was breathing a little behind!

Chatting with a chap afterwards in the car park, he'd just run 1hour 01mins, and only runs about once a week.  Easy to forget not everyone is as mad keen as us lot!

05/02/2013 at 09:51
Stevie G . wrote (see)

Chatting with a chap afterwards in the car park, he'd just run 1hour 01mins, and only runs about once a week.  Easy to forget not everyone is as mad keen as us lot!

I get reminded of this every time I go to my club. I come on here and I'm the slowest, but at club I'm one of the faster runners.

Abandoned intervals this morning - first one was 5 mins into driving hail, the second one it turned to thick snow halfway through, and at the start of the third I was slipping all over the place. So I binned it and just enjoyed a run in the snow!

05/02/2013 at 10:05

Chubby, that's why I think it's essential to do a range of high quality races, and more realistic quality ones.

You need a certain sense of being "decent" to keep you going, and feel it's all worth while.

Hail and snow, cripes, I hope the bad weather stays away with Wokingham half up this sunday!

05/02/2013 at 10:22

SG - If you ever get the chance to run the opening leg of a national road relay...    I can now sympathise with the pressure of trying not to come last!

chubby - Lovely weather you're having up there!  I think we're in for a cold-ish snap with the flippin' wind still hanging around but then it gets more pleasant for the weekend. 

Seems ages since we hit the track but we're up for a big old 8 x threshold miles this evening (8x1600, 30s recovery). Determined not to get into a burn-up, so I'll be targetting metronomic splits for 5:30 all the way.  I want my main focus for this week being my next MP run on Thursday.  I've put myself down for 13 miles but I might make it 13.1.    I think this all qualifies for "training through" Saturday's XC fixture. I'll be knackered for that!

Edited: 05/02/2013 at 10:28
05/02/2013 at 10:47

Sounds like a good call CB, there’s no point battling conditions, sometimes its just as wise to tick over with easy miles.

Some tasty training coming up there Phil

Going back to the HR discussion we had going last week.....

Simon Edward wrote (see)

YD, I agree those numbers are a bit soft. I've held 92.5% for 10 miles. What's the plan to try and increase that? My current phase of training is focused just on doing the same thing.

Simon – I hadn’t forgotten your question. The answer is I don’t fully know but have some ideas, I think it is something to be addressed once I have the Marathon out of the way. Certainly in time for some of the Autumn HMs and 10ks that I fancy having a crack at.

For info on Sunday I ran a 10k pb at 90.7% maxHR, so on the surface it’s a bit low. I think the wind had an impact here + I am in Marathon training - other than strides I haven’t done much running faster than 6:00/m, so although I feel very strong and fit, I will probably have some performance drop off when I get much faster than MP for any extended period. If I ran another 10k next week, I would probably attack it a bit earlier so might see 92% maxHR, I think I could probably afford to hurt a bit more in the middle part of the race.  

How to address it in training: coming off Marathon training I should have a good aerobic base in place; so my thoughts were that a period of V02 Max work over the summer with quite a few shorter races dotted about might be a good starting point. The session emphasis will be on extending the rep length over a period of a few weeks, this could then merge into longer repeats of 5k pace towards the back end of summer; 3 x 1m for example.

The other side of the coin would be working on my LT. So start with HMP tempo runs and work down over a number of weeks towards 10k pace, spending quite a few weeks doing sessions at LT pace or  10mile pace.
Not very imaginative, but I think it would work.

Edited: 05/02/2013 at 10:55
05/02/2013 at 11:12

YD - A timely discussion because my HR figures from Sunday were rather interesting!  As I suggested before the race I've been struggling to get my race HR up to where it's been in the past, and indeed my average on Sunday was just 175 = 86% max, i.e. what I'm used to seeing for a HM.  Even eyeballs-out and gurning for England (Vets' team) my max was only 187, which is a level I'd expect to hit regularly during interval training.

I'm pretty sure my fitness for the threshold-to-MP range is as good as it's ever been.  So it would be nice to think that further improvement at 10k could come from concentrating on quicker than threshold paces once the marathon's out of the way.  Sounds pretty obvious really, but it's sort of reassuring to think that my standard Summer of quicker races / faster intervals could lead to an improved ability to withstand above-LT paces.  (And in the mean time, accept that heavy marathon training will make me a bit more one-paced.)  Pretty sure I'll be targetting a 10k "A"-race in the Autumn for another PB attempt.

Y D wrote (see)

The other side of the coin would be working on my LT. So start with HMP tempo runs and work down over a number of weeks towards 10k pace, spending quite a few weeks doing sessions at LT pace or  10mile pace.
Not very imaginative, but I think it would work.

Not very imaginative, but INFRS as our friend TR would have it!  This is why I think LT is such a good training tempo to keep in touch with all year round.  It correlates strongly to a good proportion of the distances that we (LD'ers) race all the time, so IMO it makes sense to keep it as a staple of your training.

Edited: 05/02/2013 at 11:26
05/02/2013 at 11:52

You cant include my name with all that rocket science ! I nearly turned in my early grave.................if it were (a little bit of) rocket science then dont forget that even though you had small tapers you are still carrying marathon training fatigue, which is why (in my book) tapering for B and C races is a waste of time. I'd guess that YD cheated more (by tapering more) and so hit a higher HR, with no specific training but a bit more rest then I bet you'd all go back and achieve higher HRs and a few seconds quicker. You shouldnt need 10K specific training to hit max HRs, just the freshness to get the HR that high.

Also I thought I read somewhere that folks were claiming inclines at Chichester too (although I'll give you the one at Lavant Village), anyone for the IoW 1/2 mara ? its slightly undulating !

05/02/2013 at 12:19

TR, I clocked 4 inclines! 2 i would label "climbs" and 2 less so.  The start, and 7k were short but noticeable! It was the downs I was having trouble finding

Try Dorney Lake for a 100% flat course, there's about 1metre of elevation 2 or 3 times on the course!

05/02/2013 at 12:48

That'll be 99.997% flat then Stevie

05/02/2013 at 13:18

YD - your 11/9 double sounds immense.  Still think I'd be getting stared at for something like that on a hotel treadmill.  Completely agree doubles will be the way to get the long miles in, and I am considering doing the longer one in the morning before breakfast to best emulate the long slow distance benefits.  The alternative would be doing a quicker one in the morning to emulate the tired legs benefits.

And it all leads me to a question.  What have people found is the best time to do a recovery run - relative to the session you're recovering from?  When have you felt that a recovery run has best benefitted you?  Made you feel ready for the next session?  I don't want to debate whether it's actually worth doing a recovery run, as in my experience it sometimes is and sometimes isn't.  It's those ones when it is I'd like to capture.  Personally I've found them to work for me in the morning after a long evening session.  I find they don't work for me after a short but hard session.  And I don't feel much benefit if I leave them 24 hours or so.  So does a 20 in the morning followed by 4 in the evening make you feel recovered?

Gym last night.  I feel stretched.

05/02/2013 at 13:37

You get nothing but hills around here. If it's not hills it's 40mph headwinds. That's not including the rain and the snow (we've had even more). Love it here  

Curly, sure did  sub-20 would be an awesome time and well deserved!

prf - no idea if this would be something you might be interested in (seeing how we discussed new marathons a while back) but Dundee is looking for interest for a small-scale marathon (provisional date is July 21st) - they need 300 pre-entries to make the event go ahead. I have no idea if they plan to open it up to thousands if it IS given the go ahead, but I thought I'd at least make you aware of it (same goes for anyone else interested but prf was the first that sprung to mind). Here's a link to the page.

Ratzer, morning after has worked for me in the past but given the mileage & focus right now I'm not doing dedicated recovery runs. 5/5 was a general double last year & the first run of the day was usually very slow and relaxed (often 9:30/m+). 

Another 'session on the fly' today as the track was booked (why the kids aren't in school I don't know). Wanted to do basic speed and I have been reading about downhill sprints recently (the idea being it's 'overspeed' training). I knew of a gradual downhill decline (right by where I did my hillsprints) which when I paced it out came to about 40m. So did 6*40m downhill flyins off 4 mins. It felt pretty good actually.

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