Monday, May 30, 2011


felt like heading out to brissie forest park for a 4Ts run: team tam torture test.
its 27.5km 1120m A&D (hilly!) and involves 4 ascents and descents from enoggera creek via hell hole break, black soil, scrub rd and centre break.
did it in that order today mainly as i wanted to do 'the tough bit' first rather than worry about keeping feet dry for longer.
as it happened the feet got wet at all 4 crossings anyway!!
it involves 2 loops (which i have done separately a few times) with a 1.5km or so section joining them up inbetween.
did it last year for the 1st time as an 'easy run' in 3.55.
although with >1100m climb and drop i felt it by the end.

today was 3.18 (3.18.47 to be precise)
now i know i pushed harder today but thats a huge improvement.
was originally doing the 2 loops individually in 2.00/1.40 when i first started doing them (unfit).
did a 1.15.53 for the hellhole break loop (10km) last tuesday which i was pretty impressed with.
and a 1.40 for black soil 3 weeks ago.
splits today were 0.34 (top HHB), 0.47 (start BS), 1.35 (start scrub), 2.26 (end BS loop), 2.37 (HHB), 3.18 finish.
so for the loops thats 1.39/1.15 which were both pbs in their own right (and 0.24 for joining the loops up).
and i guess that's what i am most pleased with.
it helped running parts of HHB climb, and all of black soil and scrub rd climbs.

warwick results are in and came 19th/163 in 48.54.
also bagged a 3rd in the old dudes age-group.
looked like a few turned up just to run the 10km so i don't feel so nasty now ;)

next race will be on the TW weekend.
currently a secret exactly what i am doing - a secret to me also.
unfortunately have work committments all other weekends in june.
all i will say is i may be racing off trail again...

Sunday, May 22, 2011

ideal taper for 10km?

TOH has often said she's never seen me 'actually run'.
guess she often only sees me at the long events - walking in and out of checkpoints.
not only was i running here but i have a 'i am really trying' expression on my face.
killarney 10km ascent.

so did 30km run sunday.
then 20km hike thursday.
just general walking around++ inbewteen.
sat on a plane for 10hrs saturday.
arrived brissie midnight.
to bed just before 1am, up at 3.50am out the door 4.15am in killarney 6.50 for the 7.15am start (some roadworks, bad weather and a pit stop slowed me down).

have done a few warwick/kilarney 10km ascents before but never really tried to hammer one on 'fresh' legs.
was hoping for a sub48/top 20 (especially with noosa thinning numbers).

put on the racing flats.
hit the 1st km in 3.40 what the?? presume the marker was out.
next couple in 4.10-15 or so with the correction for the first.
was in about 18-20th i think hitting the hill at 4-5km mark.

only passed 2-3 on the way up: had gone out hard so expected this.
usually would be relatively stronger up hills than the flats but as tesso says 'the hill will stuff you anyway so you may as well head out hard' and that i did.

in turn got passed by the 2nd female at 8-9km with the lead female in a pack of 4 only 100-150m ahead and closing.
didnt quite have enough juice for the last km needed 4.15 to go sub48 but it had more uphill in it that i had remembered.
also put off a bit by being a fair way in front of the next person...
too much looking around :)

finished in 48.58 will wait for placings but close to 20th i think.
previous 'pb' was a recovery run of 55.23 in 2006 a week after 80km glasshouse.
nice to catch up with people.
hadnt seen yvette for a while!

so if i come home and have a 3 hour nap is that still a nap or if its over 2 hours should i just call that a 'sleep'.

Amazing Race Hong Kong

view on the way up to tai po shan (from about 700m)

tai po shan (950m)

the way down...

view from victoria peak (start hk trail) on a clearer day.

street signage: generally pretty good.

distance markers (500m apart) for wilson and hk trails.

caught up with cr virtual: ex hk resident now beijingian (if thats a word).

am a bit of a fan of the show 'amazing race'.
unfortunate reality is that i would be terrible as a contestant.
when nav things go wrong such as finding bus stop 51 at tseun wan MTR/train station and it takes an hour i tend to get a tad pissed... but more on that later.

spent the last 8 days in HK.
of course HK is 80% bush well ok its something like that have heard a similar number in the past.
it has thousands and thousands of trails some of which comprise 'the big 4'.
hong kong (50km) runs west to east on HK island starting at 'the peak' (500m).
maclehose (100km) runs east to west on kowloon/NT side and is the route for HK trailwalker.
wilson (70km) runs south to north across HKI and kowloon to not far from the border with 'the rest of china'/shenzhen and is a bit of a patched together trail including of course one of the tunnels under victoria harbour.
and lantau trail (70km) a circular route on lantau island.

a good reference book is pete spurriers 'the serious hikers guide to HK'.
a better book on the maclehose is written by sunny leung.
trail maps with UTM gridlines are avaiable from outdoor stores eg. protrek and rc outfitters and are called 'the countryside series'.
just be aware that for some reason they have put main roads in a very indistinguishable 'white' for some reason.
which may lead to some aussies inadvertantly walking up them (albeit briefly) and off the 'trail' ;)

in short i did parts of the first 3 on 2 separate days.
1. a 30km run involving 25km/half of hk trail starting at 'the peak' and running through pok fu lam country park with wonderful views of aberdeen up to jardines lookout and back down to civilisation (tai koo MTR station) via the wilson trail.
in short although a challenging and hilly run it is certianly very 'urban' with everything they could concrete/step they could. hardly a trail shoe worthy run otehr than some slippery steps. also a bit of a foggy/smoggy/misty day so could see 50m in front of my face from jardines lookout. certainly challenging hillwise - took me 5.15 to cover the 30km with +1300/-1700 A&D.

2. a 20km hike from route twisk via tai mo shan (the highest peak on hk - 950m) and lead mine pass to shin mun reservoir and out via kwai hung MTR (train) station. TOH joined me for this. just a perfect day weatherwise.

original plan was for 2km less but the taxi caused us issues. used the hotel person and a map to show where we wanted to go. unfortuantely the 'okokok' turned into lots of map looking and asking other drivers and dropping us off at the bus stop in tsuen wan. 'you walk up there' pointing to the 10km road that the bus goes along (route twisk). no no we want you to drive us there. 'that too far' after going around in a circular argument i was really wanting the cantonese translation for 'yes we know its too far you stupid prick thats why we have hired a taxi driver to take us there - you'...but alas. in his defense we knew there are 'territorial issues' with HKI drivers heading into the new territories and he did try and find us a bus to take us there - albeit finding the wrong one.

wont describe in detail what happened from there but needless to say i will never be amazing race worthy - my other half on the other hand is much more nav tolerant than me. ended up arriving at the 'plan b' starting point via the greatly invisible bus 51 quite late and was just going to do an out and back to the peak/tai mo shan but ended up making good time and went on to lead mine pass before cutting off a bit of ground and ascent/descent coming out via wilson trail and road.
a nice day. some 'proper trail' on maclehose and certainly got the 'out there' feeling rather than just being an urban route. also cool to ghet to the high point of hong kong.

would definately lvoe to go back and tackle more of maclehose and maybe some lantau trail.

Thursday, May 12, 2011

What the...a pb?!?

decided to measure out a 14km outNback course on the southside the other day.
my usual northside jaunt of thornton st kangaroo point over the goodwill to regatta and back (pb 61.20) is blocked in a couple of places and will be so for a while.

figured thornton st via southbank to the brisbane roadrrunners start/finish at the sth brisbane sailing club was pretty close.
took the garmin out last week and sure enough hit 7km just past the usual roadrunners startline.
for some reason only got 6.8km on the way back in part due to taking the road rather than the riverside footpath but figured there was a mismeasure.

today went out a bit harder than usual especially since a biggish dude wearing a longsleaved jacket was fartleking in front of me.
looked a bit too much like bleakman not to chase him.
caught him after a while and before i knew it was moving reasonably fast but still comfy.
we split at 2.5km and kept moving thinking i would reach 1/4 way in 16.30 or so and looked down when nearly there only to see the watch tickover to 15...what the?

first thought other than holy crap was to decide to keep pushing for a bit before switching off for a 63-64 total.
bit unsure how accurate the measure was the other week.
got to the go between bridge and the legs started to hurt but kept speeding up and wondered what 1/2 way time i would get.
decided to add on an extra 50m or so to halfway hoping not to go under distance and got there in 30.45 and thought game on!

turned and was really feeling it a few mins later.
couldnt help notice some council trucks moving in to potentially block off some of my new route on this side of the river which i had only just gotten used to.
realised at 10km/go-between bridge that the pb would be bloody hard work.

3/4 came in 46.15 and was just gritting teeth by now.
needed to come back in the same time low 15s.
felt like i was moving fast on the flat but any slight incline was a bloody struggle.
messed up my splits at the goodwill bridge (2km to go) thinking i had a 8.30 to go for the 'pb equivalent' but i actually had a spare minute.
finished in 60.18 (splits 15.10, 15.35, 15.30, 14.03).
so i guess the splits are a tad funny and long story short with the measure (downloading the run from the other week) its probably 150m or so under the 14km!!
and it's a different course anyway so not beating an old pb but making a new one on a new course.
hmmmm still a pretty nifty time though i could crawl 150m in a minute.
and if i remeasure and it's less than that i'm not telling!

and with a couple of hilly 10kmers coming up: warwick/killarney and mt coot-tha makes me think about going to the darkside for a brief while...
EE will give mt macedon some thought tho...