Saturday, March 01, 2008


On Thursday I slid the DeLorean to a stop in the year 2002. That was the last time I'd run faster than 12 minutes for 3000 metres – 11:57.95 at an Interclub meeting on December the 14th. On Thursday afternoon I ran 11:58.44. Needless to say, I'm happy to be in the elevens once again. I've been asked to "tell all", so here is the whole story...

I worked for 9 hours, but tried to forget about it. Managed a 30-minute nap before driving out to the AIS, for once allowing plenty of time for a good warm-up. I jogged 5k slowly, with some breaks for stretches and rest – felt OK doing this, but not great. My movement did feel good after swapping to the Frees and running some strides. I had my mind in the right place, and was positive about doing well. My mate Blair at the BOM had organised the temperature to be a mild 16°C.

I started on the outside of the curve, with a plan to slot in behind Burkie. He's not a fast starter, but was in good form (40:55 for 10k last week). Nev took my spot, so I followed him and Burkie through the 200m mark in 44 seconds – 11-minute pace, but it didn't feel that quick. Robbie was about 10 metres ahead of our group of three.

The photofinish clock showed 3:55 after one kilometre. I was still feeling comfortable enough. At this point, Burkie slipped ahead by a few metres, but I decided to stay behind Nev. I was having to chop my stride at times to stay at this speed – it's been so long since I've experienced that in a race, that I'd almost forgotten the feeling. I pulled wide in the home straight and thought about passing Nev, but the moderate head-wind was enough to deter my enthusiasm for the move.

We overtook Robbie, and at the start of the next lap, I sensed Nev was slowing, so went past. Burkie was 40 metres ahead, but I couldn't do anything about it. I was pretty much at my limit. 2000 metres in 7:55, so 4 minutes for that kilometre. Speedygeoff was standing at the 200m start, shouting (quietly) encouragement to all the geese. Thanks Geoff! The last kilometre was feeling hard (as it should) – I was hoping I had enough time in hand to sneak under 12 minutes. Geoff called "eleven fifteen, go for it!" My mental arithmetic went into overdrive... sub-45 needed for the last 200 metres. I sprinted as well as I could, very thankful for the sprints I've been doing in training lately. 11:58.44, an M50 PB! 6:25 per mile pace for imperialist friends such as Grellan.

That was the last 3000 metre race of the season. The good result has fired my enthusiasm for the rest of the year. My next opportunity to race on the track will be at the High Noon meets in June. That will be novel – racing a distance event on the track in Canberra's perfect arctic-like winter stillness.


Blogger strewth said...

Wow, that is absolutely awesome! HUGE congratulations. Just as well you didn't run long on Wed!! You must be over the moon with that result.

12:26 pm  
Blogger speedygeoff said...

Gosh, that's pretty good, quiet congratulations. Just as well you had time to warm up after a slack Wednesday. You must feel happy to be sub 12 again.

Do we know the dates of the High Noon meets? They will be perfect for our winter training. This winter I hope NOT to lose summer form because I do NOT want to enter another track season starting off from square one yet again.

12:57 pm  
Blogger Dusty said...

WOW - Congrats!! That is fantastic! Thanks for tossing in the mile pace for your American readers. :)

Great report - felt like I was standing on the side of the track cheering for you!

2:32 pm  
Blogger Luckylegs said...

I wish my mental arithmetic was that good or were you using a calculator? The race was pretty good too!

2:36 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Coota said,

Well done Ewen.
My ballpark reasoning is sub 5.00 k's you are a runner.....sub 4.00 ks makes you an athlete.
I still fail to understand why you can not outsprint someone who looks as slow as Bourkie.

6:37 pm  
Blogger TA and the Gnome said...

Isn't it nice to brush away the years like that :-)


11:28 pm  
Blogger Runner Susan said...

Wow. Well done my Ewen.

2:06 am  
Blogger Jason said...

Awesome race, great report.
Does this mean your speed is coming back?

8:59 am  
Blogger Grellan said...

Great Race Ewen!!! and very entertaining blow by blow account I could visualise the whole race.

You're well on the way. Congratulations on the PB and thanks for the conversion.

9:13 am  
Anonymous Em said...

Well done, great finish to the season!

That wouldn't be Blair Trewin would it???

7:54 pm  
Blogger Bruce said...

Well done Ewen. All your Hadd training must be doing some good. Nice win for the Brumbies. Aren't the Blues looking strong!

8:11 pm  
Blogger Superflake said...

Well done Ewen. Excellent result for you. I don't have a race for 2 weeks and it is a 3k track so we will see what the speed is doing then.

11:50 pm  
Blogger Superflake said...

Oh forgot to say. Good luck at Six Foot. Hope the bus ride is short this year. haha.

11:51 pm  
Blogger trailblazer777 said...

Congratulations! Well done!

You are as young as you want to be to some extent! Love the whole tilt to Back to the Future, great movies those 3! One of my favourite quotes from that is: "where'd you learn to shoot like that?" Michael J says "7-11"...

Great even running by the sound of it, with the final sprint enough to dip you under the 12.
Way to go! Look out for my running mate Dave K at 6-foot, he is over in Sydney now, currently he is in wave 2 but he is trying a last ditch attempt to get into wave 1. He is a 3.06 Rottnest marathoner and I think is capable of 2.40-3 hours the way he has run 6-inch in 3.42-3.50 in the last 2 years. I posted a detailed comment about the 40 miler race I hope to attempt in a few weeks on my blog, the entry form is @

Oh and hope the June track races and 6 foot goes really well for you. Will be reading to follow the progress. Way to go!

3:20 am  
Blogger Bennyr said...

Well done, Ewen!


11:37 am  
Anonymous Steve said...

Great race report Ewen and congrats on your age pb.

1:54 pm  
Blogger PortRunr said...

Congratulations Ewen, and a great report. Look forward to catching up with you on Saturday for a back of the pack start!

3:08 pm  
Blogger Rob said...

Congratulations Ewen. You must be really chuffed. So now, lots more M50 PB's.

8:40 pm  
Blogger Tesso said...

Huuuuge congrats Ewen! How good is it when the hard yakka pays off like that. It must fill you with such confidence for 6ft.

So does this mean I just have to wait until I am 50 before I can crack the 12 minute mark again?

9:44 am  
OpenID IHateToast said...

tsk tsk. i had you for 11:58.43. sigh. i lost money on you.

no, really. congrats. i was just worried that you were getting too many high fives. someone had to be the meanie. i thought i'd take up the position.

M50. doesn't that go by ballymont?

10:26 am  
Blogger Ali said...

Is Blair available for international weather requests?

1:05 am  
Blogger jen said...

Nice work, Ewen!! You have some serious speed. Great job pushing through to the end. Thanks for sharing the full report. :)

4:27 am  
Blogger Thomas said...

Ewen, you backing Grellan in our next race is all the incentive I needed.

7:16 am  
Blogger Eagle said...

Great report and geat time. Congratulations that is a fantastic effort. PS I will be at the start for Canberra and training at the moment is exhausting but I am enjoying the challenge of the limited time for preparation.

6:21 pm  
Blogger Rachel said...

Oh dear, is it 6 foot track already? and all i've been hearing about is this fantastic 3km time! Great stuff and fantastic report. I felt like I was right there in the race!

9:03 pm  
Blogger speedygeoff said...

Amanda, Rachelle, Bronwyn, Roger and Tony were right there in the race! And Ewen was faster than any of them! He's a champion, isn't he?

10:03 pm  
Blogger Scott said...

So many words for such a short race. But I remember your 6ft report being akin to "War and Peace."

Still I enjoyed every word of it! Terrific result Ewen. It will be a cold day in June before that record is broken ;)

11:03 pm  
Blogger Robert Song said...

Obviously you seem pleased with the result but was this the race where you were going for 11:07?

Myself I think it is an excellent result being a best for over five years. At our age you have to train hard just to stay at the same times given the ageing process.

Looking at your training I thought you may have tried to taper a little more and done more speed work in the the last months. Any thoughts on how you would approach it again? What was your training like in he months before your 9:56 PB?

11:44 pm  
Blogger Stephen Lacey said...

Congratulations Ewen. Good job. Thaks for your comment on Mick. I appreciate it.

9:22 am  
Blogger speedygeoff said...

This is your thirtieth comment. Is this a record?

By the way, do we know the dates of the High Noon meets?

8:23 pm  
Blogger Scott said...

It must be a record or close to it even taking out speedygeoff's 3 comments ;)

It just goes to show that if you have something useful to share people will over look the fact that you're a bastard!

1:31 pm  
Blogger Lulu said...

Speedy Geoff must be impressed if he left three comments! I certainly am but only have time for one... great to see you getting your speedy legs back!

6:42 pm  
Blogger Ewen said...

Speedygeoff, I think there were 49 comments for my 50th birthday ;) The high noon meets start in May, but I'm not sure of the date.

Robert Song, no, I would hope to be running faster in October. I do want to run more speedwork after the next build-up. I'd like to run some long (e.g. 1000s) race-pace or faster reps. My fast-twitch fibres are only now coming back after lots of sprint sessions. It takes a while! I want to keep some strides going over winter. A bit different for each sub-10, but usually running 80-100k weeks which included longish fast reps, some sprinting and regular middle distance or 3000/5000m races.

Em, yes, the same Blair - anytime you want the weather organised, drop me a line.

4:12 pm  

Post a Comment

<< Home