Jeremy Hopwood

Jeremy Hopwood

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Learning To Hurt Again

I think sometimes you remember back on on past training blocks with a feeling that everything felt easy - others may not but I am definitely guilty of this.

This can make training especially when aspects are not where you would like very frustrating and de motivating.

For myself this coupled with the fact that I often have quite a few training sessions where I feel pretty average - I think it varies by the person but I often feel like I am working harder in training than I do when I race. I am not sure why that is but especially when it comes to long runs I tend to feel pretty average.

Why this is I do not really know - part of it could come down to fatigue but to be honest have tried mixing a few things up and still tends to be a theme. Sometimes the long runs I have in high mileage weeks are the best ones I have.

Intervals are anther good example of this conundrum - I am not sure if the brain is just good at forgetting the pain intervals produce when you do them properly or if I just suck at the moment but yikes do they feel like hard work.

So am thinking this is a bit if a mental thing at the moment along with a need to embrace the suffering I training. In the past couple years haven't pushed the limit that much and think with mental fatigue associated with other aspects of life (wrk, negotiating with toddlers) have become a bit soft in terms of pushing the limit and working hard at times.

No real story or conclusion to this post more than that just need to embrace the suffering a bit more and start to push the limit in the harder sessions a little more and look at "sucking" as a good thing. As always need to keep the easy stuff easy and not get stressed by the sub par days.

Well that concludes my time on the "blog couch"

Tuesday, March 4, 2014

West Van Run 10km - 2nd Overall - 37:26

Racing doesn't tend to lie so given a otherwise full Sunday spent watching the heritage classic hockey and hanging out with friends it was a good day to see where I was at.

After riding across to West Van from Steveston on the trusty old MTB dressed more like I was going for a day on the slopes due to the snow that was falling it was time to warm up or as I could better describe it try and stay warm until the gun went. For me this was doing drills while still wearing a ski jacket, tights and thermal long johns - not a normal pre race routine.

The All Purpose Mule on its Bike / Train / Bike journey to the Start

A delay at the start meant 5 minutes thinking of a log fire to mentally stay warm and then it was time to go.

Not much detail to go into as was a bit of a slog, after 2km was solo in 2nd and had to work pretty hard to hold effort in the middle few km's and hold off third, found a little rythm for the last couple days but in the end the legs felt pretty dead which is reflective of the amount of run time in the last few weeks.

In the end came in 2nd Overall - First in Colin Dignum was a long way down the road and put in a very solid run on a day that was not the fastest in term of having to run through a bit of slush and rain so that especially was an impressive performance.

So what are the takeaways from this race;

Good things

  • First 500m controlled my pace well and let the field go out fast
  • Aerobically felt good  
Things to Work On
  • Legs struggling. Need to get back into a rhythm with my running and a bit more structure and get the base miles in along with a little bit more focussed speed work.
  • Stride rate is struggling a little at the moment as well - so focussing on some strides should add to that mix
Where I am At
  • I am about 10% off where I would like my run to be in 3 months or so, having said that considering the amount of running I have had in the last month (2+ weeks off with a horrible cold) not stressed from that perspective
Next Month or So
  • Thinking of taking the feedback from this race and pushing my running a little bit more in the next the month or so. Just need a lot of work in this regard so going to look to keep the frequency of easy runs up and get in a focussed interval session and long run every 5-6 days. 
  • Time to spend some solid time in the pool - this is something for another post though but need to dedicate myself a lot better in this regard to avoid repeating past mistakes
Racing Coming Up
  • Some changes to the immediate schedule in that still trying to decide the amount of bike racing over the next month with the need to focus on the run or swim especially as my riding has been pretty solid. As much fun as bike racing is need to invest my time in the best sessions for the main part of my season.
  • Next running race will likely be the April Fools Half Marathon on the Sunshine coast which gives me 4.5 weeks to find some run Mojo.