Moraghan Training - Stevie G



  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭
    Wise as always Woolster. Best of luck for this weekend, you've been a training animal, so am sure you'll smash it
    (TR too)
  • TRTR ✭✭✭
    edited October 2019
    Wool - thats about the weight of one of my legs. Dark blue (unattached harriers) T shirt, white cap, beardy chops, gel ammo belt. Hopefully carrying a 2.54 pace handbrake........had to get some late notice physio on Tuesday as my usually achy back, was very stiff and sore. Got a telling off, in an "i can only do so much a few days before an A race " way. Hopefully I'll hold together, would be a shame not to maximise one of the best weather/course combinations I'll probably ever race in. Esp given the howling wind i sucked up at Brighton in April.
  • WoolWool ✭✭✭
    nice one TR, don't worry, I have been monitoring your antics on the sub3 thread! See you Sunday. I'm oddly excited. Normally I'm overwhelmed by dread at this point!
  • TRTR ✭✭✭
    Wool - whilst the corridor of uncertainty between quiet confidence and bricking is is exactly where you need to be, if you pace it right and hsve done tbe training then the first 2 hrs are to be enjoyed, you then have an ~hour of sucking up dome discomfort, and then get to swap war stories for as long as you want. Its getting it right in the 1st half thats tricky.
  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭
    edited October 2019

    Right, finally found some time for a write up of last week’s race – the Langdale Horseshoe Fell Race. So grab a coffee and pull up a chair :smile: 

    This is a classic Lakeland ‘AL’ race – meaning long and tough - and I had unfinished business with it, having chickened out last year, sat in the car next to the start line with storm Callum causing mayhem around me and the fells invisible through the clag!   The organiser’s description is spot on:

    This race is over a rough, tough course with almost exclusively rocky and slippy ground. The weather in October is rarely ‘pleasant’ and the fells are often clagged in, making navigation difficult on a course with many pathless sections.

    So, back this year with a little more clement weather – just cold, windy and drizzly this time and a week’s worth of rain before to make sure the bogs were especially boggy and the rocks were especially greasy!

    The drive up the day before was almost easy, other than the fact I somehow missed both junction 36 AND 37 on the M6 (despite having done this trip numerous times!!!) and ended up taking a very scenic route round parts of Cumbria I’d never been to before!  Hey ho, soon dumped my stuff at the B&B (with no parking issues whatsoever :smile: ) before pre-race carbo loading with 3 pints of Jennings and great big toad in the hole and mash!

    Race start was 11, so an early breakfast, sadly passing on the full English for healthier option. I was the morning entertainment once the WI group from Leeds who filled the rest of the breakfast room found out I was doing a fell race that day!

    So, a shortish, and very pleasant, drive up the Langdale Valley to park in the NT car park near the start. This is where NT membership pays off, as some in the race carpark had to be pulled out at the end!  All kit re-checked and re-packed and off to the kit check to have it checked again by marshals and to pick up my dibber, before a bit of a token warm up and multiple visits to the pub toilet.

    Just before the start a heavy shower came in, just to make sure we were all wet to begin with! 

    I’d heard the start gets narrow quickly, so got myself reasonably close to the front, but not so close that everyone would overtake me – or that was the plan! I found myself lining up close to some of the best-known crop of current fell runners, including Steve Birkinshaw, whose book “No Map in Hell” about his record breaking round of the Wainwrights I’d just finished reading!

    Quick briefing reminding us to make sure we told the marshals and the RO at the finish if we had to retire or died and we were off! I was conscious of getting a good start, but with an estimated time of being out around 3 to 3.5 hours, didn’t want to go off too quickly!  Lots of jostling and elbows position, before we were out onto the fell side, along a muddy, rocky path. Within 200m I’d taken my first tumble! Embarrassed, but unharmed I carried on.

    And so, the long, long climb up past Stickle Tarn and around Pavey Ark began. I was holding my own here, climbing steadily and keeping up with guys I knew would finish well as we passed through the first checkpoint and working out my dibbing technique as we went. Then on to the first peak of the day – Thunacar Knott in 42 mins, in a respectable 105th out of 389 at that point.

    From there, it was over trackless, extremely boggy ground. No navigational difficulties with that number of runners showing a clear line, but heavy going and at one point I fell up to my waist into a bog, and had to pull myself out with clumps of firmer grass “thanks for finding that one” said the grinning bloke nearest me….

  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭
    edited October 2019

    Then, over Martcrag Moor, followed by a steady climb over rough ground across the face of Black Crags, before a brief respite on the tourist path past Angle Tarn up to Esk Hause. Then the hell began!

    From Esk Hause, some fell-running masochist in the early days of the race decided that the best thing to do would be to take a straight, direct line across the slopes of Esk Pike, heading straight for Bow Fell. There is something of a runner’s trod here, but it is horrible! Described in the Pete Bland race map guide as “awful but direct!”. It was a relentless slog of slippery mud, studded with sharp, greasy boulders and stones, unendingly trying to rip your shins or break your ankles, all above a very long drop! I lost many, many places here as  people with either great skill or no imagination flew past. This unpleasantness finally ended, being replaced by a field of more rounded, but randomly greasy boulders leading to the top of Bowfell, with little runnable ground between them. At this point I was feeling tired and battered but knew at least most of the climbing was in the bag. I hit the checkpoint on Bowfell in 1 hour 50, in 154th place.

    As we were now in mist, navigation could have been challenging. I took the easy option of just following the line of runners in front of me, to mixed results.  We were led over the Crinkle Crags to Long Top steadily enough, though over shattered and difficult ground, and I found time to eat an energy bar. Whoever was leading our particular group of fell-running sheep decided on the option of avoiding the “bad-step” – a rock step that involves an awkward down climb or a leap of faith. This year saw an experienced competitor fall and break her knee, resulting in a couple of hours of being attended to by other runners and marshals before a helicopter trip to hospital. A stark reminder of why we carry the kit we do… Anyhow, our leader took us round this, and there is an easy (relative term!) path to avoid that adds little distance. However, somehow in the mist, we descended a long way too far, so a group of about 20 of us had the extra scenic route, which added maybe 200 feet of re-ascent to our tally! Nice! As I said to a couple of people who were starting to moan (in a light hearted fell-runners type of way!) about his – we could have got our own maps out rather than following like sheep!!!

    From there, it was a mile or so of absolute bliss! Easy angled, firmish grass, and even a soft southerner like me could keep up the pace!!!  This soon passed though, and I found myself running step for step with a lady runner who seemed to be picking some great lines down the technical, winding, rocky descent we were now on.  Before long, we ended up at the foot of the last climb of the day – steeply, and directly to the top of Pike O’Blisco.  Oddly, I really enjoyed this climb and found it quite refreshing! I like climbing anyway, and I was overtaking people without risk of broken bones or having to constantly swear under my breath!  

    The descent from Pike O’Blisco to the final checkpoint at a cattle grid is notoriously easy to get wrong, even in good weather (I got lost here on my recce the year before!) so asked around for runners around me who had done this race many times! One strong contender for this, said he had done it six times (though still went wrong round the bad step!!) so I decided to follow him.  Sound plan, poorly executed! He left me standing as soon as the descent began! So, I had to choose someone else to follow or work it out for myself. Fortunately, the lady who picked the great lines before, who I'd overtaken on the climb, went past at this point, so I slotted in behind her, which worked really well as I could just concentrate on trying to keep up rather than looking at the route! It was quite surreal for a time, as each time she overtook someone, they slipped and fell! We had a chat about this, saying she was obviously jinxing people, and she told me she hadn’t yet had a tumble at all. I tried a different line round a walker, in a vague attempt to overtake her, only to find myself arse over tit in a spectacular forward roll, fortunately avoiding all sharp rocks and ending up back on my feet! “That was impressive” commented the walker! Indeed…..then a few moments later she ended up in the mire herself, and the guy she just overtook couldn't understand why I was laughing at her!

    So, settled in and running steadily, we came to the final checkpoint – very relieved! Jut a sharpish final descent through the campsite and then a short run-in on the road. I lost a couple of places here, and the lady who kept me on track off Blisco deservedly gained a few more seconds on me, but no matter – I’d finished and was still alive!!!  205th and 3:19. The winner did 2:00, with the record from 1977 of 1:55 still standing. I do not know how any human being can run that fast over that sort of terrain!

    After a quick chat, and a few handshakes  with thanks given to my guide, it was over to the pub for a glorious meat pie (slightly spoiled by the young lad from Croydon who seemed to take a shine to me and clearly wanted to talk at someone non-stop! I escaped via the pub toilet, pie still in hand :smiley: ).

  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭
    And best of luck for Abo tomorrow guys - DBS!!!!
  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭
    Painting a mad scene with that one Bus. Sounds an utter insane slog! If you can come through that sort of thing so nicely, a return to the road can't be too far away. More "Numbers based" I suppose as a comparison, but surely a lot easier on ..well everything!
  • TRTR ✭✭✭
    Nice one Bus, sounds a tough day out for someone that trains in Berkshire. Same as SG if you can get round a challenge like that then you must be pretty robust.
  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭
    Thanks chaps. In a way though, tough as it is on the day, the recovery is easier than from a road race. Although my legs have felt a bit mashed this week I've been running, albeit very slowly! If I'd done any sort of road race lasting 3:19 last Saturday I'd probably be crocked now :smile:

  • TRTR ✭✭✭
    Good point, but you've obviously put your back, hips, legs and feet through it hopping about on those trails and hills. Itd destroy me, but i never run off road, so maybe thats the answer in order to get some more local races in.
  • Excellent report Bus - made me envious & relieved in equal measure. I'm definitely more ascender than descender & I certainly didn't like the sound of that stretch after Esk Hause but I love the Lakes yet apart from Eskdale show (4.5M) I've never done a fell race up there. although I've done Wasdale, the X & Half X triathlons of course. I really need to get my arse back on to the local hills first.
    More noticeable improvements due to a bit of consistent training with my first sub 20 in 3 months at Parkrun today B) Still some way to go but nice to feel progress is being made. I'd biked to & from work every day last week as well as running the last 4 lunchtimes. Yesterday was 5M steady on the TM as it was absolutely sheeting down & I could. Wu & cd of 4K apiece brings my week to 33 already with a vague plan to do 12-13 tomorrow.
  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭
    Cheers Jools, and good to see you posting back on here :smile: Nicely done on th sub 20 too.
  • PeteMPeteM ✭✭✭
    Bus; that's a humdinger of a report (even SH would be proud of it!) as well as an excellent performance. There are lots of fantastic runners on here but none I would think with the sheer ballsiness to tackle that race. To also pull off a decent finish time against mostly locals, with more experience of the terrain, is just brilliant. Really well done. 

    Good luck for tomorrow Wool and TR; both going well and trained hard. The conditions wheel of fortune seems to have landed in your favour so hopefully some nice times in store.

    SG: Great to see you running again and coming back nicely; the forum misses its best glue when you're not around ;)

    Good performances recently too Matt H; another going well with a lot more to come like Stevie Wh

    Nice to hear from Aley and Scott E too; very wise words from both of you as ever

    Not much to report from me. More physio but little progress. Did a semi tempo parkrun today as just fed up of not running. Got through it in 21'54 which is obviously a rubbish time but at least it proves I can still run 5k a bit faster than my daughter :D Calf pain again but 'only' 5/10 this week so better than it has been. Still feels tight, weak and likely to go again so will keep the physio going and very much limit running.

  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭
    Ah, cheers Pete :blush: Very much appreciate the comments.

    Still keeping it all crossed for you. You say 21:54 is 'rubbish', but I know plenty of runners who have yet to achieve that time, even as a senior, let alone at our age and nursing a long standing injury that's stopping any decent training!
  • WoolWool ✭✭✭
    I quite enjoyed the write up Bus. I’m keen on retiring to the Lakes ASAP but I’m concerned as I would absolutely suck at that kind of running!!

    Hang in there Pete, a good period of rehab will mean you have many years of running ahead of you. Do you Zwift? I quite like that when I’m not running.

    Had some good chats with TR today. We ran together for short periods. I caught him about 21 miles, offered him some advice and he shot off to beat me by about a minute!! 2:56 for me. Small Pb. Massive explosion at 23 miles but no regrets as you can’t run sub 2:55 if you don’t give yourself a chance, I just wasn’t quite able to finish it off today. Love marathons, such a great test. 
  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭
    Good work Wool - and a PB is a PB :smiley:  I had the same experience with my own stab at a sub 2:55 - wheels came off and I hit 2:55:00! You'll have another chance though.....

    And congrats TR too :smiley:
  • Bus, tidy report there - that's some brilliant running. I can't even comprehend fell running, I'd be pants at the nav part with blue skies, let alone mist.

    Great running there Wool, and like Bus said a PB is a PB! 

    Well done TR too!

    Couple of tempo-paced workouts this week. 3km 2km 1km all off 5mins, aiming for sub-4/km for all and hitting 11:46, 7:43, 3:47. Then 3 x 1km (1km), looking for sub-4s with a cruise inbetween. Had a tight left quad during the week, stretched and rolled it only to find a big bruise pop up - but no more tightness.
    Great South Run for me today - no problems from the quad, so that worked out well. Had a shoddy nights sleep last night, and woke up to find that the train I'd planned to get into Portsmouth had been cancelled, so had to work out an alternative! Stress I didn't really want first thing, but I still managed to get to the race in good time. On the plus side, the weather was near perfect.
    Given the previous sessions, I thought I'd be in a good place to try to get close to my PB of 63mins, so 6:18/mi. Set off quite sensibly, as I didn't want to repeat the 10k the other week. Through 5km in ~19:30 and feeling comfortable, there were people around dropping off as they must have started too hard. Pass 10km in ~39:11, starting to feel a bit more uncomfortable but managing to keep the pace roughly even. Get to about 7.5mi and suddenly feel like the legs have been sapped and a bit light headed, so dropped the anchor and slowed up a bit. Hoped it would only last half a mile or so, the head cleared but the legs wouldn't respond. So the pace dropped until the last mile, as someone was going past singing - I said he must be comfortable if he was singing, to which he replied that it's only 4 laps of the track left. This helped to rally me, and put in a final 6:20 mile.

    Finished just sub-65 with 1:04:57, given yet another lesson with being overconfident in the early stages. Trying to find some positives from the race, as I thought I was in a position for a better time. It's a season's best, and my second-best 10mi time, and another good run in the legs. Probably could have done with more long runs, and more speed endurance work, but not sure what happened at 7.5mi.

    Once I found out that I made it onto the Cornwall team for the 10k, the pressure for this race shifted, so that's okay. Onwards and upwards! 
  • TRTR ✭✭✭
    was around 20 or 30 sec over 255 pace at 3m, told wool my back and hammys ached and got set for a tough day. I did drag some time back but sat up after a few miles as i was burning matches.

    By around 9 or 10m i remember being up with the 3m every 20min that 255 needs, but my legs were aching (not enough flat running? Not enough long tempos ?), but keep calm snd carry on was the pattern. Was still spot on 255 pace at 18 (2hrs exactly), but legs were aching and hammys were moaning. I had kind of settled into a defensive get the sub3 and try to limit slowing, getting as far as i can before any cramps and id still go 256 or 257.
    Wool turns up at 19ish tells me to keep my chin up, so i tell im im fine im just managing my legs. He pulls away.......hang on a minute, if i attach my elastic to wool i can still 255, i feel ok and maybe a change of pace/effort will help my legs, internal team talk, a few expletives and i tell wool we can fckn do this and take over the around 24m wools mate pushes on, i follow but by 25m im on the stiff legged shuffle as the hammys are wibbling, i manage to fend it off by easing  but he gets away, and so do another couple, its eased by the track and i got home in 2.55.12 so only lost 30 secs. Pushed hard in the last 6 but reminded myself of the 6m tempo runs id done.

    Took a drink which i thought was a stingy amount of strong squash, think it was undiluted, it made me throw up all my gels and lucu though, so probably did me a favour.

    3 other highlights were Millsy (ftom the p and d thread who is localish) shouting out thats hes catching me just before the track and then on the track.......and Tick Tock accusing me of cramp of the wallet rather than hammys as i telll him i cant buy the magic shoes as i didnt go sub255........DanA telling me early on "to pull your finger out son".

    Abo is a good race run for runners by runners, but there are a lot of up and down kerbs, a few gates and some track, which affects pace, so the sheep did very well.

    Marathons are still a great challenge.
  • TRTR ✭✭✭
    edited October 2019
    Matthew  - still a pretty well managed day. Well done.
  • Sounds like decent enough runs there TR Wool. Nice to hear of forum friends helping one another through the tough times. Given what the fizz had to say to you earlier in the week I'd say yours was a top result TR. What's the point in cheaty shoes anyway if you can manage that time without. Decent 10M MH though given your recent training & 5M times I too would've expected you to be a fair bit quicker at GSR. Probably burnt too many matches already this week with those tempo sessions.
    10.7M of hilly fire track for me: steady with a fast final 1200m. So that's 2 MLRs banked now. Should be good for Snowdonia on Saturday eh :p
  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭
    edited October 2019

    :Well done Bus, and the marathon boys. Plus the Head for the Cornwall call up - solid effort at GSR today - I envy you getting that one raced, great event. Changes of travel plans can not have helped at all.

    Bus - a proper report thatun.

    Wool's so tasty these days, he can get pbs and still be disappointed, he'll need a big pb to be truly satisfied!

    TR, 2.55 sounds tasty to me.

    Just such a long run! Almost 3hours out there! Phew.

    Today originally was for the 2nd year in a row a big decision between a race (GSR this year, Wokey half last) and Man Utd v Liverpool.

    Same story - missed both :(

    Did a "Long" run of 5miles though. Legs really not re-adjusting quickly to getting back on it, but the last mile was the quickest, suggesting not quite as much a slog as I'd thought.

    20mile week, so we have a 0-0-3-20

    However, the conch is the marathon boys this week, without doubt.

  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭
    Jooligan said:
    Sounds like decent enough runs there TR Wool. Nice to hear of forum friends helping one another through the tough times. Given what the fizz had to say to you earlier in the week I'd say yours was a top result TR. What's the point in cheaty shoes anyway if you can manage that time without. Decent 10M MH though given your recent training & 5M times I too would've expected you to be a fair bit quicker at GSR. Probably burnt too many matches already this week with those tempo sessions.
    10.7M of hilly fire track for me: steady with a fast final 1200m. So that's 2 MLRs banked now. Should be good for Snowdonia on Saturday eh :p

    If that is the marathon, and not a different distance (as if I have to ask with you!), I saw the elevation map today. That is an insanely cruel climb at about 22miles isn't it! I expect the down at 24miles must hurt too!
  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭
    Good work Matt. I'd agree, your recent form suggested a faster time, but still a solid outing and plenty more to come.

    TR - cracking race and we'll forgive the lower case 'I's as it's clearly been quite a day :wink::smiley:

    SG - look at the progression over those weeks - carry on at that rate and you'll be knocking on the door of decent mileage weeks again long before Christmas.

    Jools - Snowdonia marathon. I like hills, but doing them like that....just phew!
  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭

    Hope so Bus.

    This week is a big week, as I'm actually driving to work for the first time in 5 weeks!

    Slightly comedy timing, that this week the NHS 24hour blood pressure test has come through.

    I'd almost forgotten that 162 being a concern what must have been about 6 weeks ago now, having a pal do a test as 138, and a doc herself take it as 140 1 day into vertigo, so I had wondered if they might have binned this.

    However, might as well see how it comes out for a day!  Bit higher than you'd like, but not a huge issue...;but on the other side, I can't do a huge amount more to keep it down :)

    Bar not be a stress head nutter :D

  • JooliganJooligan ✭✭✭
    edited October 2019
    Correct SG. That climb is B R U T A L & the descent is horrendous. This is classed as a road marathon however the descent from Pen-Y-Gwryd has a mile of gravel track (large scalpings) with concrete drainage channels at irregular intervals on an 8% average gradient. At Mile 24 you again leave the road for half a mile of rough track to the summit before a grassy descent of about 3/4 of a mile to a concrete track which then leads on to tarmac & the final run in along Llanberis High Street. The drop from Mile 25 to 26 has an average gradient of 14%. However I love the event & this will be my 5th visit since 2014. I skipped 2016 in favour of Abingdon for my 1st sub 3 attempt - unfortunately a chesty lurgy combined with a racing mania scuppered that shot. I was in possibly the form of my life & the weekend before ran a 19:25 parkrun on the notoriously slow FoD course (I'd set my PB of 19:18 the week before) then had 2 storming XC runs Saturday & Sunday in spite of the incipient cough. I then ran (with the handbrake loosely applied) a 19:20 at Buckingham the day before Abo. Sure enough by Mile 20 this foolhardiness was being revealed for just that & by mile 23 I mentally threw in the towel as I could see that not only had sub 3 slipped out of my grasp but a PB was going South too.  Proof that I was in fantastic fettle was the 19:02 PB I then recorded at FoD the week after before going on to PB on the Sugar Loaf fell race B)
    Times for Snowdonia have gone 4:07 (no marathon specific training since spring - sounds hauntingly familiar :s ), 3:28, 3:40 (having done Penrhyn parkrun the morning of the race :D ) & 3:42 (6 days after last year's 2nd sub 3 attempt at Abo). Hoping I can scrape in a sub 4 this year but I'm not overly optimistic :/
  • Matthew HeadMatthew Head ✭✭✭
    edited October 2019
    Sorry Jooligan, completely forgot to acknowledge your return on my post! It sounds like you're building well again, and I'm sure that Snowdonia will present itself as a nice test for you... Perhaps no parkrun beforehand? :D

    SG, glad to see your miles are starting to add up again, and that you're cautious about it. Hope you enjoy the blood pressure checks haha

    So had a couple text exchange with my coach yesterday - he said he's very happy with the result, given we've not put any focus on anything longer than 10km. Also, regarding matches burned with the tempo reps earlier in the week, I completely agree, but I think it's all part of a larger plan going into the winter - so will hold out and see what happens!

    Got a low-key race next weekend, 7miler, near my parents. Will do a 5mi warm up to get there, run it at 6:45s or so, then a cool down mile or so.

    My calves and quads definitely know I put some effort in yesterday!
  • The BusThe Bus ✭✭✭
    You are clinically insane Jools! Who does a parkrun the morning of the Snowdonia marathon??????????????????????????????????????? 
  • Stevie  GStevie G ✭✭✭✭
    People love those parkruns don't they!
    Some of the Dashers are obsessed. They just have to have their little run round Upton court, even if it's at dog/buggy pace - I just don't get it.

    Just don't get injured Jools - you had a little lay off, we need your wacky character on here :)

    4miler this morn. I think i was a bit optimistic thinking it'd "come back quickly" once the dizziness had gone away..

    Still - there is no rush, no single race i "need" to do, so it's relaxed.

    Just driving into work 4 days this week, and say 25miles will be a step up, so steady we go!

    Like Bus said, I'd like to be somewhere near the top mileage by end of 2019. That hopefully is realistic.
    Then can rebuild in 2020.
  • Bus - enjoyed the report mate, thanks for that.

    Wool - PB is a PB, sounds like you did TR a favour as well, giving him a train to latch on to. It's all good karma and will be paid back in the future I'm sure. 

    MH - sounds like a great race all things considered. As others mentioned, tempo in your legs, but it's all good training and part of the bigger picture. 

    Great to see SG back at it - slow and gradual is the name of the game mate. I always see you do a lot of your non-workout runs pretty fast. Nothing wrong with slowing those down a little, especially if you're not feeling tip top. 

    Good luck this weekend for Snowdonia Jools, another one that's on my list.

    Got Frankfurt marathon this weekend. Running with Katie, she's all in for a PB hopefully (3:09), my main aim is to just try and stay with her. She deserves a great run after all the hard work she's put in.

    Flying out Fri night, will parkrun in Frankfurt before trying to find somewhere to watch the rugby. 
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