Comrades 2013

For all Comrades, south Africa 2013 runners & those wanting to know more

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20/11/2012 at 14:57
Kevin - I'd be ecstatic to do 3:50!!! I'm still stuck back in G like a big slug!

Proper winter willpower required now. It's pouring with freezing coldness and darkness but i somehow have to get out there...

(it's 33 in JoBurg right now - just thought i'd throw that in there!!)

Pisa marathon sounds nice - went there for the first time this year - lots of nice food!!
22/11/2012 at 11:21

I decided to do A20 Track n Path last weekend - decision made on Friday night and glad I did. Most enjoyable run in glorious sunshine. Managed a nice sedate 4.12 and enjoyed pretty much every minute....even climbing up the monster hill at about mile 5.

2 more maras now to year end - Enigma on 15th Dec and Portsmouth the week after at which I WILL be in fancy dress !!

Looking now to January and getting into some ultras. Glous is probable as have family that-a-ways and have done the mara twice so know what to expect.

Have also entered Crawley track end of April which is basically running around a track for 6 hours to see how far you can go !!  I think it will be a one off for me but needs must next year.

I live on the South Coast and am looking at ultras from where I am up to London / Kent as don't really want to venture too far from home and get involved in hotel stays etc etc.

Time soon to sit down and make A Plan. 

22/11/2012 at 18:06

Been on the forum for a while .. for some reason I stopped getting notifications and was back in the UK for a couple of weeks. Back in Angola and 30C temps again .. which isnt much fun.

Starting to get back into the running .. did 36kms on Sunday and ready I think to do Portsmouth but about 30 minutes slower than last year.

I did Gloucester the last 2 years and then the cotswolds ultra in March I think it was.  Not sure if I will be in the UK and when ... but I am looking at Two Oceans and wondering ........ its only a short filght!!!!!!!!!

22/11/2012 at 21:11

Excuse my naivity, but my run this evening made me think - everyone talks about the hills and sun but as Comrades is all in one direction, is running into a headwind ever a problem?

22/11/2012 at 22:06
Hey Emily
The prevailing winds in Durban are SW or NE. Next year you will run from east to west. So barring any short spells of changes in road direction, the wind should be on you from the side rather than front. I don't really remember the wind being an issue this year other than a short spell before Harrison Flats. The sun was more of an issue, but water over the head helped.
22/11/2012 at 22:33

Possum Hopper - did Crawley this year - it's good training - I enjoyed it...

Emily - wind is usually not a factor - the gusts of wind early on that Hans describes from this year was exceptional...

23/11/2012 at 08:51

In anticipation of doing some targeted hill training, I wondered whether anyone knows of the rough gradients (% or 1 in x) of the Comrades hills.

In the Don Oliver notes, the hills are noted by length but I wanted to know the rough (average ?) gradient so I can compare to hills at home. Not completely possible I know as unlikely to get the duration of climb (although Bristol where I live has hills, probably not of the same magnitude).

Like the idea of walking early on a hill on long run, maybe doing a route where you walk a hill, then come back later on the route and walk / run, etc.. Will take some practice to do I guess as it seems to go against all learned practice to walk so early in a race, but the stats done lie ......

In terms of events, will definitely be on for Compton in April (and maybe a couple of the Cotwold running events, have signed up for the Naunton 19 in January and they are doing an Evesham Ultra in April).

23/11/2012 at 10:25

Stevan - 
Hill  /  Length  /  Gain  /  Gradient
Cowies  /  1.5km  /  137m  /  9.1%
Fields  /  3km  /  213m  /  7.1%
Botha's  /  2.4km  /  150m  /  6.3%
Inchanga  /  2.5km  /  150m  /  6%
Polly Shorts  /  1.8km  /  100m  /  5.6%

Good to see Carmen back and training hard as usual 

23/11/2012 at 11:32

Compton 40 next April. Quite a few people have mentioned this on here and also others I have been talking to so I had a looksee at it. It does appear to tick some big boxes but see entries are not open yet. Does anyone know roughly when it is open ? Does it get full up quickly ?? It would be good and convenient for me so don't want to miss out. 

23/11/2012 at 13:02

Hi Folks. For those of us that dream of breaking the 4 hr barrier, it may be more straightforward than we think. My last 22 marathons were between 4:11 and 4:35 (average was around 4:25). This was due to trying to keep up an average 10 mins per mile pace and the experience of struggling in second half of the New York Marathon after going for it in the first half....a few years ago. A few weeks ago, I decided to run at 1/2 marathon pace (7 miles per hour as long as possible) and you know what....managed to keep going to do 3:58:13 at the Crewe track marathon. Okay...that was simple....105.5 laps and only 40 people on the circuit. Then last weekend it was the Valencia Marathon.....same tactics.....and guess what 3:57:06. So...what have I learnt...if you have built up some stamina, try running at the pace you would normally for which is half the distance of the race you are running (e.g. a 1/2 marathon pace in a marathon, a 10K pace for a half, 5k pace for a 10K) may be surprised that it is only your mind that is holding you back :0) Happy running

23/11/2012 at 13:27

Hi again everyone,

its been a long time since I posted (i think the day the entries were opened!) because I have essentially been injured since then!  Ive missed approx 9 autumn marathons/ultras! (that will teach me to enter so many!)  But I'm back on the road again, however 3 months of no running has really taken its toll.  Its the longest ive been without running and although ive been cycling and going to the gym regularly i can tell my body has lost fitness - my calf muscles ache like never before!  So I still have my qualifying marathon to do, although my top mileage is now sitting at around 7 miles!

My injury was never properly diagnosed (despite physios and GPs poking at it, no one could figure out what had happened - there was no trauma, my ankle/calf just became sore and I couldnt walk!) so i dont want to rush into anything.  Ill start with a parkrun this weekend.

I'm hoping to get a marathon maybe around february/march (gives me enough time if it all goes wrong), with maybe the Iznik Ultra thrown in around April/May. 

Anyway, having searched through all my emails - i cant find an acceptance email from the Comrades?  I had my payment accepted, i got an email for that, but nothing else?

Anyway, slowly does it for now (very frustrating)...  Quite envious of all your exciting races!

23/11/2012 at 13:31

With the year end edging closer and closer and my start 'proper' of Comrades training almost within sniffing distance, I am being very sad today and have worked out a 'plan' of official runs now for next year as part of training and I am so excited I just wanted to share them with you all if I may....please humour me in this and give me any feedback if you want.....

Steyning Stinger mara - 3rd March

Compton 40 - 6th April (my birthday )

Brighton mara - 14th April

Crawley Track 6hr - 27th April

Bewl Water mara - 4th May

3 Forts mara - 5th May

So, with those runs I will get in some decent ultras and a back to back weekend marathons to test out those exhausted laid plans and all that but big old fingers crossed it will all be o.k. on the day.

Edited: 23/11/2012 at 13:32
23/11/2012 at 13:53

PH, nice list, if a little insane with back to back days of marathons  (hey isn't that almost Comrades) - I've even nicked one of yours (Steyning) as I want to do a marathon around that time (bit of a distance to travel for me from the South West but could be an option as it sounds exactly the right kind of marathon).

May add Rhayader 20 to the list (if date in March fits) as this is a fantastic race in mid Wales with a decent hill climb and fantastic scenery.

My current plans are -

13th Jan Naunton 19

17th Feb marathon - help ?

4th March marathon (Steyning ?)

17th March Exmoor marathon or 40

7th April Compton 40

21st April Evesham Ultra 45

Stevie - thanks for the hill stats.

23/11/2012 at 14:30

Nice list ! 

Steyning is a great event......and made even better as you get a cooked English breakfast after - also BEST cup of tea ever after a tough old run. Well worth the trip for sure. 

Feb is usually a difficult month IMO to find a marathon but have you looked at Heartbreak Mara in New Forest 24th Feb ?? Not done it myself but it is on 100 marathon club list.

I'm not looking forward to the back to back maras but I have been advised by some folk who I trust implicity that it is something worth having a crack at - one of them being the organiser of Bewl Water and 10 times runner of Comrades.....a font of very useful advice and information for us Comrade Virgins. 

Edited: 23/11/2012 at 14:35
23/11/2012 at 14:31

Hi can check you are in the race by entering your surname here 

23/11/2012 at 17:45

Thank you!  Im on the list - phew!  So just looking at getting some marathons booked up.  Im looking at the Yorkshire marathon and then maybe heartbreak marathon, although neither of these are road marathons... I might opt for gloucester as i might have a chance of a better time there...

23/11/2012 at 18:19
Stevan if you are in SW Duchy marathon is 3rd March. CTS South Devon marathon and ultra 9th Feb.
23/11/2012 at 23:40
Stevie - you're lurking! Are are you playing next year?!
24/11/2012 at 17:13

Does anyone know if they are doing that Cotswold Ultra 35 mile 4 lap race again next year? I can't seem to find it anywhere on the calendar.

Running is going well at the moment. Having fun with some shorter stuff and cross country. Nice parkrun this morning in 16:45 so speed is happily returning.

24/11/2012 at 18:12
Hello all a little time since my last post

Gloucester looks interesting but as I live in lincs concerned about wearher/travel for those who have done before can you enter on the day? Other than that need to find some more runs as currently have born to run 40 and london only
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