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COMRADES 2020 – STATUS REPORT AT T MINUS 22 WEEKS

January 12, 2020

Figured this blog entry will just be about how everything is progressing along with the campaign started. Once again it has been far from easy and never going according that what I plan (or anyone else has planned for that matter), but it’s still all systems go and looking forwards rather than backwards for June 14.

TRAINING REPORT

Distance hasn’t concerned me in the past as it has other Comrades runners through January and this hasn’t been an exception, even if personally I would have preferred to get through some longer distances and reach the 50km/week goals that I’m setting through the month. Yes work has an impact but the next 2 weeks see me on shifts that make training easier to schedule through the week rather than relying on heavy weekends. I know I’m also content with lighter workloads compared to other runners as I assume that the bulk of the field, particularly local runners, are yet to run their qualifier and as such need to have a heavier workload in order to get their qualifier done and dusted before preparing for the big dance.

Wangaratta has been entered (and hopefully the conditions will be substantially better than what they have been in the last few weeks, but this blog isn’t going to get political or argumentative, social media is sufficient to see how this has again proven how divided Australia is), and the bib has already arrived as if to remind me to get my butt into gear. There are no expectations on a time for the whole journey but if I can get somewhere between 1:55 and 2:05 for the first lap of the 2 lap course I’ll be delighted. To take that back to training, some of the runs I did last weekend and will be doing in the next few weeks will be to search for the consistency in kilometre splits that I’ll be after in these lead up events, as well as searching for the consistent pace that will not adversely affect me later in the races.

Next Saturday I’m hopeful of doing a triple header consisting of a relatively easy 7-8 kilometres to Parkrun in Rockhampton, the 5 kilometres of Parkrun itself (including the hill to kick off the final kilometre, always a favourite of locals!) and then an easy 7-8 kilometres back to home base. Just like that it’s a simple 19-21 kilometres covered with ample recovery time, as long as the parkrun is done at a quicker tempo than the other legs (I’ll be looking for a time  somewhere between 27 and 28 minutes).

Either someone overestimated my ability to get a low number, or someone knew I was a Bulldogs fan knowing how revered the number 3 is at the Whitten Oval…..

RACE ENTRY STATUS

In the last week I have had the bib for Wangaratta posted to me, and I’ve also lodged the entries for Port Macquarie and Canberra. Planning to enter the other lead up races in the next fortnight as at this point there isn’t a massive hurry to enter. I still need to confer with work over what shifts I will be working in the weeks these races will affect (relatively easy task) so I can swap shifts if necessary. Still waiting on the actual course for Wings for Life in Perth but from what I’ve read roads near the river will be used. I’m guessing the course will head south towards Mandurah along the Kwinana Freeway but I guess like everyone else (including the 130 or so that have already entered) we shall wait until the course is released before we know where we’re going.

 

OTHER LOGISTICS

Been a few alterations to the accommodation for the week of training in Melbourne and the Easter weekend, as my original choice is undergoing renovations. It has meant going inner city which isn’t so bad (I can still get to most of the places I want for the week), but the plans for a long run on Easter Sunday as well as a midweek decent run has had to be altered. Perhaps this year I’ll be able to do what I had planned a few years ago when I first entered Comrades, taking a train all the way out to Craigieburn (North-Western suburb of Melbourne) and running the 30km or so back to the city using rail trails and other park trails. I just hope if I do this and I take the early train on Easter Sunday I just may be able to knock over the kilometres I want.

The recent influx of Asics products being processed at work has also got me thinking about when I need to order new footwear for myself. Usually I like to order the Comrades race shoes around Easter so I can get a number of training runs and at least one race run under the belt before the big race, plus another pair at the start of the year. This year however I’m still using a pair purchased last year for training purposes throughout January and I won’t consider another pair until February at the earliest. Same with clothing, especially now that I already have the race shirt in possession and I’ve already had a race run (albeit an aborted race run) in the shirt. I’m likely to have a race run in the Australian top at Noosa or even Gold Coast if I enter that event.

 

The next blog entry I’m anticipating will hopefully be a number of Vlogs during the week of Brisbane in late January. While I have some sort of schedule in mind, it is open to change and I’m considering doing one of (but not both) a run from the City around the river, through University of Queensland’s St.Lucia campus and up over Highgate Hill back to the City, OR doing a lap around Mt.Coot-Tha alone midweek either running in or taking a train to Towong and having a midday or mid afternoon start. I guess how I feel during that week will determine which choice I make as unlike last year I want to make the week in Brisbane count.

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