Monday, September 11, 2006

I gotta get off this boat ..... NOW!

well i have to admit to being not a great mariner.
not sure why i agreed to spend 2 weeks up in the whitsundays on a boat.
think it was a case of being completely focused on glasshouse and nothing else!
the 1st 2 days were fantastic - what i'd hoped for - light winds, calm ocean, picture-perfect scenery, someone else driving the boat.
unfortunately not so good on day 3.
i'm sure 15-20knot winds wouldnt scare most people but they sure gave me the willies!
lost the plot at 6pm that night, grabbed my camping equipment (luckily had pre-planned) and basically screamed 'get me the hell outta here!'
yunno like one of those claustrophobic people in an overcrowded lift.
most embarrasing.
spent the night on a beach which i was told was much more comfortable.
was luckily on land (hayman island) for the next 3 days and needless to say i couldnt go back on the boat after that!
25knot winds were forecast for today :)


a few post GH race thoughts
pace - still waiting on the splits but felt good on the day. at a guess a 30 min positive split. harder to do better than that over 100km with the beerwah loop at night.
feet - fantastic. not a peep out of them. taping worked well.
chafe - have acquired some 'sports shield' from CR kato but stayed with the trusty 'ol vas for probably the last time here.
lighting - well i have a PT apex nothing mroe needs to be said!
food - good. bbq shapes were really dry and difficult to eat in the last few hours which was something new.
fluid - weight was even until the 2nd last check (then lost 2kgs in the final 2hr bolt). the frozen blue powerade experiment didnt really work (left some frozen 1.5 litre bottles at the cp's) with it staying frozen too long - was getting an initial supercharged solution initially then very dilute on return to the bottles. more experimetation required ... or maybe just a crewie!

to answer plu theres no way i wouldve gone on to do the 100 miles.
it was never really the plan - have been running more conservatively this year after 2-3 years of intermittent injury i'm keen to clock up more runs/ultras and i can assure u 100km is far enough!
also i didnt want to be worrying about 'proper' training while away overseas - wouldve ruined the holiday and the DTI - domestic tranquility index.
felt quite good physicially at the end but i was starting to lose it mentally (was seeing all these little moving frogs that were actually little stationary rocks on hamburger hill).
100 miles is more like double 100km in terms of the torture u put yourslef thru and i can always do that another day ;)
maybe physically i could have coped but mentally i would have been a bloody mess on that eastern loop (but whats new!).

thanks for all the comments guys - this may even be a new mellum record!

Monday, September 04, 2006

Return to Glasshouse

glasshouse 100km (well 102km) 2.9.06 - 14.47 - 3rd overall (2nd male). first ever (non age-group) bling!

i know this sounds stupid, considering i have 11 glasshouse finishers mugs (7 ultras) in the cupboard but i have felt 'out of the action' there in recent years.
the main event of the year is of course is in september and i hadnt run this event since 2003 - i paced sean greenhill in 2004 and crewed for team mellum in 2005.
the absence made me quite edgy this year - though not helped by some pre-race ITB pain.
after a whole tube of voltaren gel, a DT massage and a few sobering words from whippet i fronted up without cortisone half expecting an ITB blow-up at 40-50km.
'failing this' (!) i had hoped for a 13.30ish finish but with the wet/boggy weather was happy to go sub 14.

started off in a conservative manner - had to remind myself i was running 'IN' the forest not running 'THRU' it - like in may.
ran with a few of the 100 milers in the early sections - tamsin, colin and robert but left them on the crappy uphill just before cp5.
planning on taking it easy on the infamous 'powerlines' - had done 2 loops on the previous friday in 38 and 42 minutes so planned for 45 this time.
until i reached the first downhill and found the bog and revised this to 50mins.
stopped looking at the watch all together soon after when in certain sections you had to slide/surf down gullies and use all limbs to go up the other side to stop yourself falling back.
didnt particularly worry me that 14hrs was slipping away.

arrived at cp8 feeling a little nauseus so took an anti-nausea tablet and planned to take it easy in the loops at 8.
started to push a little harder when i saw lindsay phillips and pete gardiner on the 1st loop and subsequently passed them on the hilly bits to be in what i thought was 5th place (9 starters).
it was pleasing to see all the runners going to/from cp8 on the loops as i hadnt seen many of them all day - and especially great to see team mellum doing so well early!
arrived at cp7 before tanky to my surprise as i hadnt passed her (she took a minor detour).
after talking to the cp people i found that i was actually in 4th place - 3rd male at this stage so thought i better get my arse into gear.
it all started to become 'less fun' on the way to cp6 and i guess things can become a bit of a grind after 11 hours!

sorted out the night gear at cp6 and hoped to get thru at least some of the 'beerwah loop' before needing the light but of course needed it on arrival at the crappy bit .... bugger!
the beerwah loop is just terrible to do in the dark - i have little confidence going downhill at the best of times but with all the bog and on tired legs and at night i found myself at times simply tip-toeing down even the relatively benign downhills.
was extremely pleased to reach that long steep uphill that indicates the end of the loop and emergence onto connection road about 2km from cp5.
once there it was a case of drink coke and run run run.
which i did - had some walk breaks during the worst boggy bits but ran hard most of the way back home.
great to see the 100 milers coming back out over hamburger hill (having done 102km and heading back out on the eastern loop) - but was of course a little disappointed that i hadnt managed to catch some of them before i finished.
arrived to some cheers from ann/mrs boonarga, brenda and jenny and was very surpised to hear that i'd actually come 3rd (2nd male) after the early leader (a NZ world 100km rep) had pulled out - he had been sick pre race.
john pearson won.
the girl from WA finished 20mins or so before me after being not far behind john all day but getting lost twice.
it was somewhat embarrasing to see that half the 100 mile field had come thru the 102km mark before i finished so it seemed a little silly to be receiving a podium finish in the 100km event but i'll take it!

fantastic year for the 100 mile event with 20/26 starters finishing - 10 so doing under 24 hours.
dave waugh broke the course record - only 3 weeks after winning the australian 24hr track champs.
great to see spud (2nd), tim and whippet (team mellum) all break 24hours.
tim now has a shirt!
hard to pick other individual highlites but the finishes of AB and tanky were great as well as seeing most of the first timers finish - will, blue dog, horrie, tamsin (1st female).
you wont find 2 blokes who luv their running as much as dog and horrie.
and of course its always great to see the 'old farts' ian and bill cross the finish line (this time together).
great runs in the 50 and 30km - bloggers lady jove, clairie and hannah got some bling.

have never seen so many teary eyes before.
its amazing what an emotional event this is.
such a huge weekend.
for the 100 mile competitors its such a huge effort over several months or even years for them to get to the start line and then such a torture test to finish on 'the day'.

i seem to have pulled up well after the 100km.
think the ITB was just a brain-playing-games thing and had had a few other little niggles none of which troubled me on the day either.

so should i do the 100 miler again?
to be honest i'm just so glad to be running again, and enjoying running again that the last thing i want to do is not enjoy it.
but i have to admit this alpine 100 mile thingy has got my attention!
anyway better give some more thought to this GNW first as its in november - the 100km tho not the 100 mile!
now 3 ultras for the year - my busiest year ever!