MsE – I hope your niggle clears soon and that's a sensible decision not to run
PMJ – That’s a good sub 40 10k considering you’re not 100%
Gul – Glad to read you are doing hill sprints. Strength building and injury protection all in one.
OO – Solid 15 miler
Minni – Congrats on your first sprint Tri. So when’s the Iron Man attempt?
SJ – Fantastic cycling and result! Have you ever entered a Duathon? You would certainly be at the sharp end.
Well I’m in taper mode for the third time in a month. I have the Causeway Crossing 50k on Saturday followed by the Newry Marathon on Sunday. That’s a lovely 57.3 miles of racing in 24 hours and should be interesting.
I ran the Causeway Crossing 50k last year wearing a Go Pro camera. I set it up to take a photo every 5 seconds and then created the following video out of the images - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jO7BwBtZaVk The battery only lasts about 3 hours so turned it on or off at times.
I’ve also now booked the Mourne Way Marathon in a few weeks which starts at sea level and peaks at around 1400 feet. Should be fun!
Badbark - so you only have 82 maras/ultras to go. Plenty of people knock the 100 off in very quick time BUT they churn out a lot of very slow ones. To be reasonably fast, or in podium mode like you, while doing that many would be a great achievement of which you are no doubt capable. I am currently on 58 (46 maras + 12 ultras) but 100 seems very unlikely.
Poacher – 58 is pretty amazing especially as you are not targeting going for 100. I’m not putting any time frame on when I reach the 100 so no pressure in that regards, but I definitely intend to run some fast and some slow. I’ll be shooting for a podium next Saturday in the ultra but will be taking it very easy in the marathon on Sunday. It will be nothing more than a 26.2 mile recovery run.
Good to see some solid Parkruns and 10k’s run over the weekend. Does anyone have any marathons planned soon?
SJ – No wonder you can run so well on low mileage with 8 + hour ‘solid training days’ like that! You’re a machine. Sorry to read about all the punctures though.
Gul – Sorry to read about your knee issues. I’m a huge supporter of running as many miles as possible on softer ground. As MsE says make sure to be doing exercises to improve your stabilizer muscles. I think one legged squats with a dumb bell and 10 sec hill sprints would help.
I’ve been thinking about it for a while and have now committed to a new long term goal. I want to target running 100 marathons or ultras! I’ve currently completed 18 and I’m running the Causeway Crossing 50k Ultra on the 23rd of May.
I’m going to join the 100 Marathon Club Ireland and begin working towards the 100. To kick it all off in typical ‘Madbark’ style I have just signed up to run the Newry Marathon on the 24th of May. My 50k starts at 1 pm on the Saturday and the marathon at 9 am on Sunday so all going well I’ll have completed both races within a 24 hour window. Teehee, I love it!
OO and Gul - Despite not what either of you hoped for I think you both performed really well. Poor conditions can take minutes of a goal time. Running a sub 1:30 half only a week after a sub 3 marathon is damn good in my book.
I ran the Belfast Marathon today just 8 days after my 2:51 in London. I only decided last night to target sub 3 as I've never done it in 5 previous Belfast races. I ran 18 miles last week over 4 runs all at very easy pace trying to recovery from London.
There was a 15 mile wind in Belfast today coming from the SSW which meant there would be a head wind over most of the last 8 miles. However, it would be at our backs between 8 and 14 which is pretty much a steady climb.
My target was to run about 6:45 pace until about 20 miles then hold around 7:00 for the final 6 to sub 3. I felt good at the start with the wind at our backs and completed the first 2 miles in 6:35 and 6:37. However, I was already getting twinges in my quads and every decline hurt a little.
I ran the next two miles in 6:43 and 6:47 and turned into the wind a bit for the next 4 miles. These were completed in 6:57, 6:49, 6:51 and 6:51. We turned to run north starting a gradually climb but with the wind at our backs. My quads had loosened up by now and I was feeling good.
I ran 6:41, 6:39, 6:43, 6:46 and went through half way in about 1:28:50 and was actually enjoying the steady climb for a change. The climb finished around mile 14 after a 6:58 then we turned into the wind but had about 2 miles of a steep decent ahead.
This was the part of the course I was dreading the most as I could barely run down hill at all only a few days before. I upped my cadence to over 185 and tried running as lightly as possible down the hill. I ran 6:22 and 6:41 having to put the breaks on a lot on the second down hill mile due to the pain in my quads.
The next mile took 6:55 before we turned into the head wind for most of the rest of the race. My average pace was around 6:45 so I had about a minute to spare on a sub 3. It was very exposed along a tow path between the motorway and the sea but I tucked in behind a guy running the perfect pace and took 6:55 and 6:51 to reach 19 miles.
Into a lovely industrial estate we went and my quads began asking for me to stop and put my feet up. I only managed 7:01 for the next mile reaching 20 miles just under 2:16 but was starting to really struggle. My wind breaker was pulling away and legs just got heavier with every stride with a 7:19 next. Oh Oh, my sub 3 goal was in danger but I was still ahead of the pacers.
I struggled on into the wind but could only muster a 7:41 and started considering walking and wondering if it was really worth it. I have a 50k ultra race in 19 days and had already had a good workout. Feck it, I ran on.
The sub 3 pacers came passed me and I tried to hang on to them but fell behind in no time and ran a 7:25. Into the last 5k now but my legs were totally shot and could only manage 8:10 and really struggled up the final incline with an 8:37. The last full mile was downhill but every step hurt more than anything in London which took me 8:38.
My family handed me my Chelsea scarf for the stagger to the finish which I ran at 8:06 pace singing 'Championees' holding it aloft! I finished with my garmin showing 3:05:48 and my quads more than a little angry.
I'm not too annoyed with failing to run my goal because it was a little ambitious to begin with. It was only last October I ran 2:58 in Dublin after a perfect 16 week schedule. Trying a sub 3 after giving it everything I had for a 2:51 only 8 days before was definitely a 'Madbark' thing to do.
Next stop is the Causeway Crossing 50k Ultra where I will be defending my crown after my first every (and only) win last year. I plan on a bit of cro