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January 8, 2018

So the grind begins again, those early mornings and late afternoons dragging myself out of bed or away from nothingness as the days grow longer and the temperatures get hotter. It hasn’t been like what the southern capitals were experiencing last weekend, for it actually didn’t get over 35 degrees up here. That’s not to say it’s been a cakewalk or anything like that, humidity in this part of the world is often too difficult of a hurdle to negotiate. Yet so far things have been positive in training if not going according to the script.

Even though I’m not intending this post or this blog being a fully blown diary of the 2018 Comrades Marathon journey, this first blog will highlight what I’ve done in the opening week plus give an indication of my intentions for the coming weeks. Naturally when it comes to training plans you don’t have to treat this plan as gospel. After all I’ve never been a running coach (just a level 1 Australian Rules Football coach), I’m prone to changing plans on the fly which I have done frequently over the years and have done so again this week, and I recognised when I was studying a teaching degree that sometimes what you have planned may only work for some and not everyone. Feel free to steal whatever I’ve done or am planning to do, but note that if what I’m doing doesn’t work for you, then feel free to alter any plans to suit you.


Week 1 heat map courtesy of Strava.

1 JANUARY: 5km split into 2 x 2km and 1 x 1km. 1st 2km section @ sub 5:00 pace, 2nd 2km section @ 5:50 pace, last km at 5:20 pace

2 JANUARY: Rest Day

3 JANUARY: 6km@ 5:30 pace, was looking for 45 minutes or 8km although I was getting the pace that I wanted to maintain.

4 JANUARY: Rest Day, did some light home gym work on arms and leg presses

5 JANUARY: Rest Day

6 JANUARY: 68 Minute long run, aim was for 75 minutes or 14km (achieved 11.7km, so if I managed to keep going I probably would have made the 1.3 km in the remaining 8 minutes)

7 JANUARY: Trio of Efforts. Was aiming for a 3km/4km and 5km trio, ended up doing a 2km/3km and 4km. I like doing this in training as it gives you the kilometres you want from a long distance run whilst getting a few rest periods in between. Another trio that I like doing is a trio of 5km efforts where I vary the pace (first 5 at 5:30 pace, second 5 at sub 5:10 pace, last 5 at leisurely 5:50 pace).

STRAVA STATS FOR WEEK 1: 32 kilometres covered, 3:00:03 active running time, 247 metres NET Elevation Gain (Strava gives net elevation gains rather than gross)
COMPARISON TO WEEK 1 2017: 8km MORE, approximately 50 minutes extra active running time, 92 metres extra NET elevation gain

FEELINGS: Whilst the figures look low compared to a number of others, particularly those in Africa who have probably been in heavy training looking to get their qualifier at a race such as Two Oceans, this is certainly more kilometres in the bank than I have ever done at this time of the year (in the past I haven’t begun training for anything until the end of January). Even though it hasn’t been the exact program that I have been seeking, the fact that I’ve been active and have achieved those efforts is a success. Now to take the next step.

NEXT WEEK: Monday is a rest day, vital considering I’ve gone back to back run days over the weekend. Tuesday will be extended due to me gaining the day off work, and local landmark Mt Archer will get a visit from me for the first time in a few years. The course will look something like the route below, although there may be slight alterations as I stick to paths at times rather than take up space on the road. This run will be an ideal lead up to what I plan to do around Mt.Coot-tha on January 26, the details of which I plan to share a little later.

You may notice upon zooming in that the run will also include the downhill section of the run. Being a Down run practising and trying to perfect a technique for downhill running, particularly on weary legs, will be a necessity. Running downhill cannot be simulated on a treadmill from what I’ve experienced,

Planning to do a hard 5km on Thursday morning, although it’s still to be determined if it is to be on its own as a run or as part of something a little longer (not more than 50 minutes), before the Saturday afternoon long run which this week will aim for 85 minutes or 16km (whichever comes first). To round out the week on the Sunday it will either be a trio of 4/5/6km efforts or the trio of 5km runs that I outlined earlier in this piece. Of course this is subject to change so what I propose to do here isn’t necessarily going to be what I’ll be reporting on next weekend.

One Comment
  1. Susanna Combs permalink

    I take pleasure in, result in I discovered exactly what I was having a look for. You’ve ended my four day long hunt! God Bless you man. Have a great day. Bye

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