Latest posts by Dachs

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Moraghan Training - Stevie G

Posted: 09/02/2016 at 22:07

Nice work in beating your clubmate there AG.  I was almost tempted to come and give it a go when my kids' rugby was cancelled, but I have a perfect record of zero TVXCs this season I didn't want to sully.

Likewise, nice XCing Pete.  I also saw you'd made the trip to Woodley.  Didn't realise that bit of the park was that muddy, but I suppose I keep to the paths when I take the kids to school.

SG, good to see you back.  Nice 20 PMJ.

Been thoroughly enjoying this wind as you can imagine.  I think what pisses me off most is when I can barely move forward, then I look up at the trees and they aren't even moving.  Wind affected my 17 with 12 @ MP on Saturday, managed 5:55 pace, but it was pretty tough.  11 with 2 x 2.5m @ HMP today as a last HMP session before Wokingham, average 5:32 for the HMP bits.

Moraghan Training - Stevie G

Posted: 02/02/2016 at 19:26
I do it at half marathon pace. I find 10 mile pace (5:23 ish) to be too hard to hit in a continuous road run, more something for long reps on the track. But today it was to perceived effort anyway.

Moraghan Training - Stevie G

Posted: 02/02/2016 at 15:06

By the looks of things, the realness of a race is in inverse proportion to the number of non-participants watching it.

12 including 6 @ LT this lunchtime.  When I took the kids to school this morning the wind was non-existent.  Lovely day for a tempo, thought I.  Well, I should have known better.  By the time I finished my warm up it was blowing like a MF'er.  So I decided not to bother timing it, and just run to perceived effort.  Not much fun, and I dread to think how slow it was.

Moraghan Training - Stevie G

Posted: 02/02/2016 at 14:21

Video up on Youtube of the Southerns. 


Simon and I both feature, including running together from 20:00, but you get some idea of the ground - or rather you still don't, because they mostly filmed some of the less unpleasant bits.  Apart from the hill they initially film on, and it is quite fun watching how dodgy even some of the front runners look going up it.

Moraghan Training - Stevie G

Posted: 02/02/2016 at 10:52

Is Woodley definitely not UKA?  I know the organiser doesn't usually with her other races, but Woodley was always UKA in the past, and they say it's runbritain certified on the website.

Sub 3

Posted: 02/02/2016 at 09:39

Nice long runs CD and CC2, and a pacey run from selbs too.

Ryan, as ever, massive mileage.  Hope it pays off.

Lev, awful luck to get hit with injuries again, but you've shown the results will often come anyway, so hope that's the case again now.  Is Wokingham likely to be off then?

Jools, 21st place is very strong indeed.  Congrats on the silverware.

bains, that photo looks appalling, so well done wherever you finished.  The ground looks similar to parts of the Southerns, but we didn't have to contend with the freezing hail as well.

CW, good run at the Southerns, and some nice additional miles too.  After my run there, I could not muster more than about an extra half a mile!

So yeah, I also did the Southern Champs.  Eventful. Hopes of a top 100 finish proved wildly optimistic, as the conditions underfoot (and overfoot most of the time as well) ruthlessly exposed my usual cross country failings.  A bloke fell over next to me, did a forward roll, and came out ahead.  Now that's impressive.  .  I battled gamely on, and ended up in 157th in 58:16.  Well behind a few people I'd be confident of beating on the roads, but that's just the way XC goes.  That's 6:46 mm pace, which I suppose tells its own story.  Just looking forward to getting back on the roads to be honest.

Pretty sure Padams lined up next to us on the start line, but didn't say hello as I was saving my breath for the hill.

Moraghan Training - Stevie G

Posted: 01/02/2016 at 16:48

Funny stuff there Ric - they certainly took their time with those results.  Nice long run too.

Matt, great fell racing exploits there, and a quality win.  Do you just chuck fell races in as and when you feel like it still?

Nice marathon work AG.  If you get the LT stuff done to the right level it will take care of itself, even if the pace isn't what you'd hope for,

Pete, good parkrun and first finish.  I'm targeting well under 2:40, and I'm quite happy to have an easy pace of 7:20s a lot of the time, so maybe this chap just didn't want to be helpful

Simon - you weren't the only one having a tough day, and I would not have been wanting to tackle that course below 100%, so kudos to you.  I must admit, I did wonder if you'd DNFed, so well done for sticking at it.  My average pace of 6:46 minute miles tells the story of this course, to be honest. Looking forward to racing you properly at the ICs.

IronCat5 wrote (see)
Awesome report. What was the distance?

Theoretically 15km, but it was probably around 14.


Moraghan Training - Stevie G

Posted: 01/02/2016 at 15:42

Lap two is where I start making some progress through the field, despite the conditions of the mud, which seems to somehow be getting worse with every lap.  Another runner steps on the side of my foot, and his spikes cut a hole in the side of my shoe and graze my foot.  Close!  I pick off a couple of local runners who I would usually be ahead of, but who have been too close for comfort recently.  Two thirds into the second lap, I spot the unmistakeable figure of Simon Coombes ahead gamely struggling up a hill.  He looks like he’s had it.  I greet him as I pass, and, given how he looked seconds earlier, am surprised when he stays on my shoulder and exchanges pleasantries.  I grunt something in response – I am not being rude, but this is all I can muster.  Simon sticks with me for a bit and we make some progress through the field to round out lap 2.

The prospect of another lap at this point is about as welcome as a dose of hepatitis, or Peter Andre’s 2004 comeback album –choose whichever of those concepts most resonates with you.  However, it has to be done.  On we go, and the mud is worse again.  People are now running at least ten metres either side of the shortest route to just get some traction.  I am losing places now, and it’s all a bit of a blur.

At only a mile or so to go, a WSEH runner pulls alongside me, and on one of the firmer bits of ground, trips over.  Unbelievably, he does a forward roll on the ground next to me and SOMEHOW COMES OUT AHEAD! As he stretches away, I yell “You still bloody overtook me!” at his back, and he chuckles as he disappears over the horizon.

Now it’s time for the downhill fast finish, but this is muddy too, and I prissily dance through it whilst at least two or three motor past.  I can hear more at my back, so I sprint, and somehow manage to hold them off.

So, scores on the doors are 157th place in 58:16.  In my more optimistic moments I had hoped for top hundred, and had this been a road race against the same field, I’m confident I’d have been there.  But mud likes this exposes my lack of core strength badly.  Results are disorientating.  There are people I’ve beaten who are comfortably inside the top 80-85, whilst there are people who have beaten me outside the top 200.  Definitely a better performance than my XCs before Christmas, but not exactly vintage.  Never mind.  I have survived, and if this doesn’t make me stronger nothing will.

Now looking forward to the Inter Counties.  That’s much more my kind of course.

Moraghan Training - Stevie G

Posted: 01/02/2016 at 15:41

Right ... report time

Each of the clubs is given a place to line up on the nice wide start line.  We are right next to Thames Valley Harriers, who are lining up behind their top couple of guys.  I feel like a bit of a fraud standing next to these chaps on the start line, as I’m sure they’re going to be featuring in the top 20-30, so I hover about a metre behind the line.  Despite my attempted encouragement, none of my clubmates want to stand in front of me, so reluctantly, when it becomes clear that the gun is about to go, I shuffle forward and stand on the start line with the proper runners.  I kick my legs forward, in an attempt to dislodge the significant amounts of mud that have already accumulated on the spikes on the walk to the start line, but the mud flies into the air and then arcs backwards towards the eager faces of the other runners, so I swiftly abandon that endeavour.

There is a brief moment of peace, where we collectively stare upwards and contemplate the task ahead - a 300m hill rapidly funnelling down to a narrow gap through the trees.  The peak of the hill is the Russian guns, and we are each of us a thoroughbred steed, bred for our power and endurance.  Our flanks glisten, our manes billow proudly in the wind, and our nostrils flare in anticipation.  Each of us is ridden by a tiny hussar, a hussar called determination.  We are ready to face our destiny.  At this point, the analogy breaks down and the race begins.

I am swiftly swamped on all sides by people streaming past, buffeted around like a pensioner at a Limp Bizkit concert.  I concentrate solely on not falling over and avoiding the involuntary acupuncture that would inevitably follow.  I survive the start, and enter the trees at the top of the hill, and I’m through to the other side and the free-flowing running that must surely follow and OH MY GOD WHAT IS ALL THIS SHIT?!  Straight away we’re into an absolute quagmire of foot deep sticky mud stretching for hundreds of metres with no obvious firmer ground round the edges.  With people crowded round on either side, you just plough through as best you can and hope for the best, but each time you pull your foot out is a supreme effort.  Finally out onto firmer ground, but the great clods of mud make my shoes feel like diving boots, so it’s hard to take advantage.  However, it gives a rare opportunity to look around, see who I can recognise and check where I am in the race.

Some way back is the answer.  Time to work.

The first lap is extremely wearing, but the novelty of the route helps to some extent.  More mud slicks follow, as well as climbs and descents in the woods (also a mud slick) with some wonderful bumps and dips hidden beneath the surface of said mud.  Garggh, I just want to run fast!

Lap one of three comes to an end, and my spirits are briefly raised as I hear the hysterical shrieks of my legions of nubile fans.  They shower me in rose petals as I pass and scream my name.  I shall bed several of them later, and make a mental note to check their IDs this time.

Moraghan Training - Stevie G

Posted: 30/01/2016 at 23:43

Speaking of mud (and my goodness, what mud!), Southern XC Champs today. Too harrowing and exhausting to write a report today. I will do it soon.

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