Jeremy Hopwood

Jeremy Hopwood

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Love the Track

Tuesday Night Special, bike commuted to and from work and turned up at track angry due to the idiot who buzzed me near the office and a flat just as I was rolling then thumping into the track. Good way to be!!!!

2 Mile Warmup then 200/400/200/400/200/400/800/400/200/400/200/400/200 with same distance rest in the outer lane and 1 mile cool down.

Hopefully by year end can hold that 3:05 pace for 10km (Can Dream)

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Elevation - San Dieguito Half Marathon Race Report - Feb 8th, 2009

1:19:32 (PR by 2:16) (16/1302 Overall) (3/85 - M25-29)
Having escaped the snow of Vancouver for a week holiday and bike riding in San Diego I found out about a half marathon being held the morning after my arrival. The prospect of having a run in the sun and away from below zero temperatures appealed so I signed up and after 24 hours of driving and a nights sleep I found myself at the start line of the San Dieguito Half marathon. Based on my review of the course profile it was a rolling course however how the degree of rolls was not something that I had envisaged.
After the anthem gun goes and myself and 1300 others are off and rolling (literally) along the roads of San Diego. Based on the course map my race plan was to "give it" on the downhills, hit my tempo on the flats manage heart rate on the up hills. After about 600m of the starting descent I found myself with only a highway patrol motorbike ahead of me and in the race lead which was a little bizarre. The first climb then begun at 1km and I settled into my race plan and started to drop back into the pack a little as I started a 2 mile ascent with 250 feet of elevation gain. This is when I stated to learn how rolling this course really was!!!
After about 6 mile and a 200 yard pitch that must have been close to 10% in gradient I was in 16th pace and still waiting to find a flat section of the course to set my tempo. Coming through the turn around loop part of the course I was about a minute or so behind the next competitor and had a few people behind including the women's leader and past kona winner Heather Fuhr and further back was Michellie Jones a winner at Kona just 2 years ago. It was a bizarre scenario to be racing in a field with stars of triathlon like that but I suppose this is San Diego. Survived the rolls back towards the end and gave it for the 2 mile decent before slugging uphill for the last mile.
The race was a fun race with a scenic course although spent most of my time focussing on the next hill and where the next turn in the road was. The end result was a new personal record of 1:19:32 and 16/1302 Overall and 3/85 in the M25-29 division. This made it 6 PR's in my last 6 races with a firm belief I can run sub 1:16 for the distance on any course that doesn't have the 574 feet of elevation gain that this course presented.

Results at

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Running Fast Jedi

Discovery - Running 200m at pace clears the mind and finds the Jedi within

So returned from San Diego last night and headed out to the track for a workout today after work. Limiting factor in a group of my races has been leg speed vs aerobic ability so are looking to build that.

Took some advice from Jerry at Forerunners and decided to go with a sprint workout today with a group of 200m intervals. Tp be honest really did not remember what pace I was meant to run these at thought it was mile pace or quicker so went with McMillan times for this workout and did the following.

20 x 200m with target pace of 31 to 35 seconds per 200m with a recovery pace for the following 215m (based on lane 6 recovery) at whatever pace I felt to be able to hit next interval.

So the results were;
> Laps 1 -5 - This is easy..
> Laps 6 - 10 ...mmm this is getting tough
> Laps 11 to 15 ... might achieve my throw up goal for the year
> Laps 16 to 20 .... run fast jedi run fast

Target Time hit - 18/21 Intervals
Avg Lap time - 34 Seconds
Avg Recovery time - 1 min 18 seconds

Finished up with a double interval and was 1:10 for the 400m (36/34)

  • Approach of running 200m and 400m intervals only with the longest interval of 800m once per session could be fun and gain results.
  • This approach should guarantee I will throw up at some point!!!!!!
  • Giving it for short intervals really clear the mind...just think about getting around that bend and to the end of the straight. This is how I may find my Jedi within
Next up
  • This could be the of blogging. Need to do my San diegeto half race report...will be titled Elevation
  • Plan the next couple months. Have 4 weeks of base work to put in
  • Report on San Diego and the adventures of a 35 mile climb and a 35 mile long decent
  • Blog article on the art of "on on" San Diego Style

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Through Rain, Sleet, or Snow – 2009 Icebreaker 8km (Steveston, BC, Canada)

13th Overall, 4th 25-29 Age Group, 27:13 (New PB by 39 Seconds)

February 1st was the Icebreaker 8km, event no. 2 of the TIMEX Series put on by BC Athletics and the race is sponsored by Forerunners. This was also an exciting race as it was my first official race since becoming supported by Forerunners and Newton for the 2009 season.

Gun goes and off begins my second foray at this distance into the rain a fog that lay on the course ahead. My debut at 8km 3 weeks prior had been a painful one as struggled to hold tempo after a quick start, so the aim today was to settle into the race and pick up the tempo.

After the first 2km’s of square dancing among the top15 or so I settled in to setting the tempo for the third pack.

Like a little kid on a road trip I was thinking how much further as we ran towards the turn around point. Not having started the watch at the start (user error) my gut felt was that I was running a slow split and may struggle to beat my PB from 3 weeks prior.

Turn around mark then appeared and split in about 13:35 which was ahead of schedule. As the rain thickened (literally) began the run back and chase for those dropping of the pace in the second group.

Our chase group expanded as we picked up a runner dropping back and another coming from behind. Pretty much at this point the next gap created was going to be the one for our race within a race and with 1500m to go I hung on to the next move and found myself head to head with a 20m gap to close for the last km.

Sleet started to come down at this stage and managed make the pass with 400m to go before putting my head down and not looking back as I tried to steal anther place in the last 100m or so. This did not happen but I did get a PB for the distance and my split was nearly equal which an improvement is over the first two races of 2009.

So through rain and sleet (Snow was saved for drive home) managed to finish 13th with a new PB of 27:13 which broke my previous best time for the distance by 39 seconds.

Back of the Envelope Notes

Wore a fresh pair of the Newton Distance Racer's which is what I have been wearing in for since I bought my first a pair of Newton’s in September 2008. This now makes 5 PB’s wearing Newton’s over the last 5 months. .

Thanks to Forerunners for sponsoring this race and for their support and advice over the past year. My equivalent 10km time has dropped approximately 15% over this period with my last 5 road races having brought PB’s. A large part of this must be the quality of their staff and with 3 sub 2:20 marathoners to ask for advice it must be one of the most knowledgeable (and quickest!!!) running stores in North America.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Calafornia Bound

Long day of pack, drive, coffee,drive under way. 24 hours until arrival in San Diego.

Current location is the back of the wagon typing away on the laptop somewhere in Oregon State. Few more things to do online then need to do formal race report for the IceBreaker.

Week plan at the moment for San Diego;

Sunday - San Diegeto Half Marathon in the am, stretch out ride (3 hours in the afternoon), possible pm recovery run run with hash house harriers.
Monday - Long Ride (4hours or so), Brick Run, Possible Swim
Tuesday - attack stage 8 of Tour of California (Mt Palomar Awaits), potential swim
Wednesday - early am swim and track session - day at seaworld possible pm recovery run
Thursday - 4 - 6 hour long ride and brick run
Friday - Swim and ride. Potential an opportunity fora TT perfomance on the bike.
Saturday - Farewell ride (maybe coastal, Mexican and Margarita

Monday, February 2, 2009

January Numbers

So here are my numbers for January with a few disclaimers;

13.5 hours
14,000 m

Distance is low compared to actual as have spent a lot of time doing drills and do not put a distance down when doing this stuff. Main success indicator for me here is time. Aim for Feb will be to get at least 15 hours in the pool

21.5 Hours

Mix of this has been on the trainer where distance is only relative to other trainer sessions. Have only done 2 "actual rides" in January due to the weather and the rest has been commuting focused.

Aim for February is to commute at least 8 times in the month via the extended route (equates to daily mileage of 50km and ride between 700 and 1000km in San Diego next week and get at least 4 quality trainer sessions in along with two club rides. If this all adds up will equate to a monthly mileage of around 1500km as a target (50 to 60 hours).

20.75 hours
Avg Pace 5:09 km/h

Early weeks was on snow and ice but only one treadmill run is part of this mix.

Aim for February will to be do a lot of short runs of the bike and focus on getting in my speed work. No real aims for mileage but would like to keep consistent so will aim for at least 200km of running which should be achievable. Main thing for me here is to focus on ensuring legs feel godd and rested so can focus on other disciplines.

3 Hours
This is mainly core work at the gym.

Aim for february will be to increase this to 8 hours whihc will be assisted by buying a swiss ball and baby weights for home.

Month Summary

Started of with only 1 run in the first 4 days so really ramped up come the 5th of January. Total of 58.75 hours of training which equates to 1.9 hours a day and 13.3 hours a week.

Happy with the month, have had a strong run and swim focus and have not felt fatiued or suffered any injuries. Have been quite fluid in my training based on how my body hads felt and what the weather has presented.

PB'd for the 8km distance at Pioneer (27:52), for the 10km distance at Chilly Chase (34:51)

February Goals

Feb will increase with the week of training in San Diego and will likely look like 93 hours and a weekly average of 23 Hours.

Will be looking for a bike and swim focus into February. Based on how february pans out will detemrine the plan of attack for March and APril which have a few running races but the true focus will need to be on building a strng base on the bike while improving my swimming.

Have already broken my 8km PB with a 27:13 at the icebreaker and will aim to PB by a fair margin at the San Diegeto Half Marathon this weekend. Following that will be a focus on base mileage to build for the year ahead.

Will do a swim time trial of 1900m at some point in the month as well as potentially a 40km bike time trial on the road bike out at iona to get some indicators on current level at these activities.

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Icebreaker 8km - Inital Race Report

Will tackle the formal report once final results are up, so here is the short version.

Time: 27:11 (8km)
Overall: 13th
Age Group: (25-29): 4th

Goals: C Goal 27:52, B Goal 27:30. A Goal 27:00

So weather was a little bit cold for this sojourn with the temperature around 2 or so degrees. Getting used to racing in this weather so went with singlet arm warmers and gloves which proved to be the correct combination. Got a 30 minute warm up in and felt pretty relaxed for this race. Was worried legs would still have some residual fatigue from training day the previous day and the 3.5 hours on the bike but felt good after warm up.

Did not have a super solid race plan for this one, not sure why but was just trying to focus on a rhythm and not over think the race. This was aided but not starting my watch at the start. Normal hustle and bustle at the start and after about 500m a lead pack started to form of 4 and I sat back in the chase group. No km markers on this one but at about 1500m after moving into 5th on a downhill section or so felt I was going a little bit too fast and eased the pace gradually.

This meant that the chase pack ran way but are still trying to get a natural sense of pacing. At about 3.5km I though I must be on for a 15 minute split as felt nearly to good for this point but hit the turnaround in approx 13:35 which was good and meant that If I held I would go sub 27:30 which I felt was the realistic goal for the day based on the McMillan equation of 27:39 based on my chilly chase time.

Started to gain on a guy who had dropped from the chase pack along with a guy who was on my tail at the turn in km's 4 to 6 and a pack formed at about 5.5km. Tried my normal tactic of stepping up the tempo as I passed but the guy responded so I sat back a let the pack run. Could sense we were amybe slowing a little and another guy closed the gap and we were a pack of 4. With about 1500 to 2km to go the guy who joined got a little bit of a gap on the group when I let somebody else move to the forn to tack the tempo. I decided now was the time to go with him and held the gap of about 15m and steadly gained on the two we left behind.

With about 1km to go there was no risk of dropping further back so stepped up the cadence a got the guy at about 500m, made sure I went past with speed and got a decisive break. Tried to chase down a guy in the last 400m but couldn't close the 50m gap in time (maybe got it down to 15m).

All in all a good race, was happy with the time and felt pretty fresh afterwards. May have a bit more in me but think I executed on the plan however unstrucutred well.

Last Thoughts

  • Need to still keep the start slow and controlled and look to let the pack decide tempo until past 50% of race distance.
  • 26:30 is very acheivable with a bit mroe speed work and a few less pounds of my frame.
  • Room for improvement in my strategy for races, need to work out checkpoints that make sense as using km splits seems to short and can't trust group paces. Will likely go and try and run a few km intervals at 5km, 8km, 10km and half marathon pace to get some more feel for pacing.
Next Race
San Diegeto Half in San Diego - won't need the arm warmers for this one. Is a hilly course so should suit and will consult with others to form a race plan this week. Tempted to be aggresive in my pacing for this one and see what I can do with the risk of having to cruise it in, but will head the advice of others on this.

McMillian indicates 1:16:14 would like to set targets of
A - 1:15:00
B: - 1:17:30
c: - 1:20:00

but need to think about this more.