Sunday, February 19, 2012

Defining Moment / My Ultra Running Story.

Lateral Vision Productions  feature Documentary on Irish Ultra Runner John O'Regan.  Shot on location in Ireland, Greece, UK, French Alps. Sahara Desert, The North Pole, Antarctica and the Yukon Territory.
A fascinating case of one person against the elements.  What are the ingredients that make an ultra runner go through such grueling mental and physical pain?  How is an ultra runner different from a marathon runner?  This intriguing documentary reveals what makes him tick using the background story of his participation in the 2010 “Spartathlon”.  Four hundred and fifty of the world’s top ultra runners passed the stringent entry criteria for the 246km non-stop race, but just 128 crossed the finish line within the 36 hour lim

Further information and sales available from Lateral Vision Productions.

Byrne takes Irish 50k Title

John Byrne won the Donadea 50k in a time of 3:07:54 hrs on 18 February, thereby taking the title of Irish 50km Champion.
Charlotte Kearney, running her first ultramarathon, ran a time of 4:04:06 hrs to win the female competition.
The Donadea 50k is Ireland's only IAU-labelled 50km event this year and doubled as the 2012 Irish Championships. The race is also part of the 50km World Trophy series, with Byrne's winning time making him an automatic invite for the World 50km Trophy Final in October.
Among the attendees was Athletics Ireland CEO John Foley who was watching his first ultramarathon. He was very impressed by the race setting and organisation as well as the stamina of the athletes.
In a dominant display, Irish 100km international John Byrne led from start to finish to win in an impressive time of 3:07:54 ahead of Barry Minnock (3:10:43) in second place and David Simpson (3:12:12) third.
Unfortunately, last year's winner Keith Whyte was forced to withdraw due to a chest infection. However, the depth of performances was excellent, with ultra runners who specialise in distances much longer than 50km (31.1 miles) posting very good times for the 'sprint' distance of the ultrarunning world.
The female competition was won by Charlotte Kearney, who was delighted to win her first ultramarathon race in 4:04:06. The second and third finishers were Medbh Peavoy and Orna Dilworth in times of 4:31:17 and 4:37:23, respectively.

Saturday, February 18, 2012

Donadea 50K & Irish Championships 2012.

My plan for today was to run an even paced race and finish in just under 3hrs30 and it was almost spot on.  My splits were fairly consistent with a slight changing of pace which was heart rate related and was usually caused by the change in terrain.  I went through a tough patch towards the end of lap 6 but soon came round after picking up a drink and by the end of lap 7 I was back in business.  The Marathon split  came in 2:55:50 and although I knew 3:30 was still possible I also knew my pace was dropping on the few climbs.  With less than 2K to go I thought the 3:30 was gone and subconsciously eased back and it was only on the final approach to the finish line that I realise I was still on schedule but noticed it too late and even my attempt at a sprint finish was too little and too late.  I crossed the line in 7th place with a time of 3:30:02 which was a second behind my training partner Jim McCormick.  Not a bad result and all in all I'm very happy with how the day went.
The Donadea 50K was a very enjoyable race and it was great to meet up and run on home soil with my Ultra Running Ireland Team Mates. I'm almost looking forward to running it again next year.

 I went into this race untapered and will use the training effect to move onto my next race.
Heart Rate Average = 148bpm.  It spiked slightly towards the end which accounts for the measurement error of 17%.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Getting ready for Donadea.

It's not really a Taper but I have eased back ever so slightly and included a rest day.  My end of week Long Run was just over 20K and all other runs were between 10-18K which included one steady run of 15K and an 18K run from work to home with 6* 800M intervals in the middle.  My Gym sessions continued as normal but the workload was changed with a slight increase in advance of a step back next week before increasing again the following week.
Tomorrow I have a Massage at lunchtime and this will be followed by an evening recovery run and I'll decide what to do on Tuesday depending on how I feel.

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

World Marathon Challenge.

Irish Ultra Runner Richard Donovan has set a new world record for running a Marathon on each of the 7 Continents.  He started in Antarctica last Wednesday 01st February 2012 and finished 4 days 22 hours and 3 minutes later when he crossed the finish line of Marathon number 7 in Sydney, Australia.  For further information check out World Marathon Challenge.

Sunday, February 5, 2012

Donadea 50K, Training Update.

Training so far has gone as planned and this race is fitting in nicely with plans for other future events.  I more or less continued as usual since competing in the 100K World & European Championships last September but did of course include a few down weeks for recovery.  I finished off 2011 and started 2012 with some shorter cross country races which are great for building on leg strength over the winter and this race of 50K is just what I needed as motivation to get back into longer distance training and back out of my comfort zone.  So far this year I've ran close to Marathon distance at least 4 times which included one run of 50K , one Marathon distance run of 42.2k  and one Half Marathon distance run of 21.1K which I did just to get a measure for future runs. All my runs are aerobic except for the occasional shorter lunchtime run of 10K that I sometimes run a little bit faster.

As well as the above I've also started training on a more regular basis in No17 Personal Training, Merrion Square and without doubt it has made a difference to my strength and is helping me stay injury free.  I'll do a more detailed post on my strength and conditioning work in a future post and will include some detailed photos and routines.

I've started using the new Saucony Pro Grid Guide 5 which did take a bit of getting used to as it's very different from all previous models and I've been using it since it was Pro Grid Guide 1.  The heel in this model has dropped by 4mm which is a significant drop and for the first time I couldn't just run with it straight from the box.  I was slightly concerned as it felt a bit 'too' different but after a few easy runs I'm now using it for my long runs and have forgotten about the dramatic change but I was thinking that it might have been a better idea to go for a smaller drop of maybe 1mm or 2mm and drop it again when introducing the next model.  One big plus with this shoe is it's much lighter than the previous model and this might make a difference is races of 100K and longer.