The Middle Ground

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07/02/2013 at 19:36
Phil, that's a cracking memory! Far far better than mine.
I remember chatting and you wearing the baseball cap. Was that 2009?

7m incl 15mins tempo (5.59 pace) on the towpath at lunch, and 4m recovery tonight at 8.23 pace.
07/02/2013 at 20:22

Bloody Nike adverts!!!!

Nice session Brian and nice to get it done at lunch time.

07/02/2013 at 21:58
What the hell's going on with the Nike ads?  Clicking in the new post area kept leading me to those stupid ads for overpriced knitted shoes.  Grrr!   I managed to create an area to type within by quoting someone else's post and then editing.  Genius!  *edit* And now I've fcuked up the font.  Sod it.  Anyway...

Brian - 2007, the warm one. It's the only time I've ever worn a peaked cap for a race!  Nice tempo-ing!

So I covered various bits of the marathon route this evening, but it certainly wasn't warm.  Brrrr!  Bloody freezing rain and the wind had got up for the last few miles.  So, pleased to manage 18 miles incl. 13.1 miles in 1:17:09 (5:53/m), average HR 165 (81% max).  Quite enjoyed the four-lap format so I'm pretty sure I'll repeat the same run in a couple of weeks, hopefully with some better conditions for comparison.  Halfway in 1:17 - that's got a nice ring to it. 

07/02/2013 at 22:10

Phil:  don't forget that in the marathon they say that half way comes at 20 miles! Good session though!


08/02/2013 at 07:45
Morning all,

It's bloody freezing this morning. 6 and a bit slow miles at 5:30am seemed like a good idea when I planned it last night, but it was a serious battle against the CNBA fairies this morning...
08/02/2013 at 07:57

Wow Phil thats a cracking run!

parkrunfan wrote (see)
Curly45 wrote (see)

PRF well the pb is 3:56 so quite a bit of wiggle room to play with

Nice work on the track race and the rankings! What was the time (I think you were hoping for sub 40 with Dewsbury and wind and miles as factors)?

YP sounds a good run!


Plenty wiggle room, and the 3:56 was a trail race of course - I remember being in the middle of the 20 parkrun challenge when we saw that result come out of the blue. That was a real bit of stealth racing


Last night was 38:29, so it was Sun 38:12, Weds 38:29 with 34 miles crammed in between. I'm not overly bothered about the times themselves but I'm happy with the block of work in total

Cheers, Brian


Nice time then all things considered!

It wasnt stealth racing as it wasnt a race, just an over long long run with a fast mile tagged on the end

Well done on getting out in the cold YP, I've got 6 to do in an hour or two.

Surrey XC tomorrow. Who's in?


Edited: 08/02/2013 at 08:03
08/02/2013 at 08:07
alehouse wrote (see)

Phil:  don't forget that in the marathon they say that half way comes at 20 miles! Good session though!


Yes, Phil, so get yourself to 20 miles in 1:17 and then we're talking.


But 1:17 as a cold winter evening's training run is beyond what most runners can even comprehend!


08/02/2013 at 09:13

Very impressive running Phil, very impressive indeed. I think that MP looks a bit soft, just saying like

Nice one for getting your run in early YP, I did almost the same as you at 6am and can concur the CNBA fairies were up for a fight today!

Planning some hill repeats at lunch time to tire my legs out for a long run in the morning.

08/02/2013 at 09:34

YD - Ha!  I might start thinking about targets after the Finchley 20. 

Curly - I'm in.  More "in" than "up for it".   In theory there's still all to play for at the top of the league, although I think Thames have too big a lead on us, and we should be able to hold off Herne Hill.  Now that I'm deep into marathon training, I'm also far less bothered about inter-club rivalries during XC, so I'll just run it hard and if I score for the team that's a bonus.

Probably up for a bike/rowing session at lunchtime in a nice warm gym, then take a view on a possible easy run this evening depending on what the weather's doing and if my gloves have dried out.

08/02/2013 at 09:44

The Nike thing is happening again!!!

Phil – what was the HR doing after 10 miles? My last couple of MP runs the HR has been very steady all the way through, but I wonder if it would rise after 10 miles. I plan on testing the theory out at some point soon.

08/02/2013 at 09:51

Phil, At the risk of me repeating myself (it's an age thing), you are looking good! Infact if you were a racehorse I'd be having an ante-post flutter!

Gym this morning for TLC.

08/02/2013 at 09:59

YD - Average HR splits were quite interesting actually...
156, 164, 165, 165, 166, 166, 164, 164, 164, 164, 163, 164, 162

Compare to mile splits:
5.56, 5.49, 5.43, 5.49, 5.56, 5.41, 5.50, 5.58, 5.53, 5.51, 5.58, 6.03, 6.01
(The course is flattish, but enough undulation to affect splits by 5-10s per mile.)

PE for the last three miles felt like HR should have been rising slightly but this wasn't the case.  The rain had started getting heavier, wind a little stiffer, and it really was bloody cold; I think this added to the effect of my legs beginning to stiffen up and I just found it harder to turn them over.  Not that I couldn't have gone quicker for a TT effort, it just made it more dificult to judge even pacing.

I'm happy at the moment that I'm still not encountering any HR drift, but this is another reason I want to repeat the run in better conditions.

08/02/2013 at 11:24

Phil – very nice solid HR figures, as you were saying the other day, it shows your cardiovascular systems are in fine fettle. I recognise what you are saying about the PE going up in the last few miles but the HR remaining stable. I am hoping some hill work and hilly long runs help by adding a little bit more grunt to my legs.

I have been seeing some very nice HR readings recently and the cynical side of me sometimes wonders if cold weather suppresses HR a bit, i.e. its too good to be true, kind of thing. Obviously, HR goes up quite a bit when you are warm, does the opposite happen in very cold weather? Or is it the same as hot weather, where more blood is pumped round to regulate skin temperature?

08/02/2013 at 12:32

CNBA fairies hitting me, or lack of sleep and the fact that it's been a tough (albeit short) half term. Awake since 2, and when I got up to let the dog out at 5:20 I changed the alarm (from 5:30) and curled up for another hour. I don't think I'd have made it this far without!

That's a great tempo run Phil. but 2 x 1:17:09 is 38 seconds too fast to make PRF happy! You should rein it in by around 1.5 sec per mile

Edited: 08/02/2013 at 12:33
08/02/2013 at 13:28

Good number play CB and well done on getting out, albeit an hour later than planned. Is it Little Miss CB keeping you up? I have had a bit of that from Junior this week, but he slept through last night, I didn’t, bloody body clock!

6miles at lunch including 8 x 40 seconds hill sprints. Brings up 12 miles for the day and should have suitably tired out my fast twitchers for my long run in the morning. Bit of an experiment running hill repeats one day and running long the next, inspired by Ratzers efforts last year. I don’t think tomorrow will be pretty

08/02/2013 at 13:33

Room for an enthused (slightly obsessed?) and rapidly improving newbie?

I’ve just turned 42 (this week) so yah boo sucks to the extra year on the clock, but hurrah for some extra fractions of age-graded points…did I mention obsession? 

I can give you the verbose version at some point if anyone’s interested, I’m good at verbose, but I’ll try to keep this brief before you all fall asleep.

When I say newbie, I really do mean it. Back in August I was two stone over weight, shockingly unfit, and even as recently as mid-November, I’d probably not run a mile continuously in my adult life, and certainly never run 3 miles…ever.

Anyway, to cut a long story short as promised, I got interested in Parkrun almost completely by accident, ran a 5k training run in about 27 minutes a few days before my first, surprised myself with a 25:35 on debut, and well, these are my results since, including age-grading:


01/12/2012 - 25:35 - 53.75%

08/12/2012 - 24:36 - 55.89% - PB

29/12/2012 - 25:53 - 53.12%

05/01/2013 - 24:04 - 57.13% - PB

12/01/2013 - 23:35 - 58.30% - PB

26/01/2013 - 23:48 - 57.77%

02/02/2013 - 22:37 - 60.80% - PB


There were pretty extreme extenuating circumstances for both of the non-PBs (though I’m guessing all runners console themselves with that thought?  ) but even so I really beasted myself last week and was chuffed to bits to take another (all but) full minute off, and dip into the 60% age-graded rating – seems this is something of a landmark? If I can knock my time down close to 22:30 tomorrow, the extra age-grading looks like it would give me an open class equivalent of under 21:00 and a score of approaching 62%.

Have really surprised myself off less than 2 months training (I lost over a fortnight to a chest infection) from a, literally, standing start and want now to keep this going but know I’m going to need some more structure to do so, particularly having just got myself up to 20 miles for the first time this week – up from 12 just a fortnight ago.

Started off my ‘training’ in what I’m sure is classic noob fashion, by just blasting round as fast as I can, trying to set a PB every time and then adding distance with no change of pace. Have already learned that fatigue and soreness lie down that route, though touch wood I’ve thus far avoided injury, and am now introducing more slow miles into my routine to go with the extra distance. 

Have got a Garmin GPS on the way to help with that (I don’t even possess a stopwatch at the moment!) and I can see from the bit of lurking that I’ve done so far on here that there’s a wealth of experience and good ideas herein, and I’d like to tap into that if I can be so bold as I try to build towards a first 10k race I’ve signed up for at the start of next month (target of sub-48:00), keep getting faster with the Parkruns for as long as I can, and perhaps most importantly of all, avoid breaking myself down with injury.

Jeez – and that was supposed to be the brief version. 

Edited: 08/02/2013 at 13:34
08/02/2013 at 15:52

Bob – The early months of taking up running and continual PB smashing are huge fun, enjoy it! You seem to be taking a sensible approach. From a training point of view my advice would be to just keep it simple. I think your priority should be gradually increasing your mileage (with regular cut back weeks). You aim at this stage is strengthening the body, the joints and connective tissue and building a good aerobic base all done through easy running. Throwing some strides or the odd fartlek session in can keep things interesting and give your legs a taste of faster stuff without stressing the body too much.

Phil – I wish I could run that HM time in a race let alone a MP training session!

Chubby – Well toughed out!

YD – Hope the legs are still alive tomorrow!

A painful physio session for me last night but another step forward in the recovery. I might able to try a short test run over the weekend at some point depending on how things feel. He even seemed to think that Snake Lane may be doable depending upon how things progress. I’m wishing I’d done some cross training during the time off rather than just sulking, not least because of the pounds piled on! I'm always amazed by how much weight I can gain in a short space of time when not running....

08/02/2013 at 16:35

Positive news on the leg Mr V. Managing injury is very difficult, its very hard to know when to push and when not to. Fingers crossed you get the call right.

Welcome Bob, good work on the improvement so far. I cant beat the advice you have been given by Mr V already. Consistent consistency will get you a long way at this stage of your development.

08/02/2013 at 16:48

Bob, that all sounds good, and your 10k target, if anything, slightly conservative, but that's no bad thing at this stage. I suspect that running without a garmin to start with is also a good thing. Having gone from 12 - 20 in a fortnight sounds a bit quick on the "increase by 10% a week" front, so I'd look to consolidate at that level for a few weeks, really really not worry about improvement, reminding yourself that you're building fitness.

And if you can do it, a little work on the core goes a long way - even perhaps just working in some planking every other day or so.

Echoing Viper, by crikey I'd like PP's tempo pace as my race pace! Supposed to be doing Wokingham this weekend, and originally set 1:19 as my target, but that's a bit tasty for me now given a) I've been sore all week and b) oops, bit of a knee thing to manage. And also c) I just don't think I've got to that level. I do think that a hard half or two is great for marathon training, though. Last year I did 4 10 milers, 3 Dec-Jan and one in April, and they were a good base, with Steyning Stinger half in March (too tough to "race", perhaps, but great training) and Croydon in April.

I am in for the Surrey XC, though, as we cover ourselves in glory with promotion! (whispers: from Division 4, where most clubs have sunk because they can't get a team out)

08/02/2013 at 17:30
Hi BigBadBob - welcome to the thread, and hope you stick around. As a newbie runner, the best, best, best advice is to not get carried away, keep everything really simple and allow your body to have time to adapt.

Having said that, every runner knows that setting PB's is fun, and it gives you a massive confidence and enthusiasm boost when you can see you're making progress, so the tricky bit is balancing the sensible half of the brain with the mad, keen, enthusiastic half. Good luck with that

YD - good luck with the long run tomorrow...

Mr V - positive news on the physio... I find a painful physio session (or a painful sports massage) can almost be enjoyable, because you know that the pain is doing you some good.

Good luck to all XC'ers....
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