Friday, November 14, 2008


Putting it bluntly, my 10,000 metre race last night was a failure. I was attempting to improve on my M50 PB set in December last year, but missed by 28 seconds. I placed 11th (from 18 finishers) in 45:21.64.

The conditions for the ACT Masters' track race were pretty good for November in Canberra — about 23°C (73°F) and calm. I had a plan in my mind to try and run about 1:45 per lap (4:22 per kilometre), which, allowing for a slight fade, would result in a time of under 44 minutes.

Despite having an easy 3 days (including 2 rest days) prior to the race, my legs didn't feel fresh at all. The race was hard from the start, and that feeling lasted for each of the 25 laps. Initially I ran behind Dale for a couple of laps until I sensed he was slowing. I moved ahead and ran through the first kilometre in 4:23 — not bad, but it was feeling ominously harder than it should have. I picked up the pace a little, and could sense Nadine (breathing heavily) and Roger on my heels.

At 4k I started to slow, and Roger moved decisively ahead. There was nothing I could do to keep up with him. Nadine's breathing became quieter, so I was by myself through 5k in 22:14. For the rest of the race I was running alone, and wishing for it to be over. I thought I had enough of a buffer to come in under 44:54, but my pace drifted, and it was not to be. I was close to an M50 PB, but not close enough. To do it in January I need my legs to cooperate, and be feeling fresh and eager to run. Come on legs!

Salchows — 4:23, 4:20, 4:26, 4:29, 4:36 (22:14), 4:35, 4:42, 4:46, 4:42, 4:23 (23:08).


Blogger Jason said...

No man's land is hard place to be.

5:34 pm  
Blogger Scott Brown said...

Seems like more rest was needed after the last couple of months of high mileage. Anyway old fella, you have a PB in there somewhere just wasn't to be on that night.I'm sure I'm telling you what you already know when I say these things.

I know the feeling when the first few Kms feel harder then they should be. Not a good feeling.It really #!*"s with ones mind and it is difficult/almost impossible to come back after a start like that.

Keep kicking at the cracks Ewen

5:46 pm  
Blogger strewth said...

As you say it was close. By January your legs will be "on track" again! Well done - at least you gave it your best shot. I hope Nadine's silence didn't mean she stopped breathing!

9:04 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Too close Ewen!
Don't be dissapointed though it would have been on fresh legs.


10:21 pm  
Blogger TA and the Gnome said...

Bummer! :-(

10:23 pm  
Blogger Two Fruits said...

Go to the oval and try some of my "cruise intervals" sessions. They are only about maintaining an even pace, with a small break thrown in there every 10 laps for a drink. I feel better than intervals or sprints, even for 3/5000 metres, or 10 kms.

10:27 pm  
Blogger Superflake said...

Well it was faster than both Melbourne Mara 10k and Canberra Times 10k, so there is always hope you will run faster. Take it January mate.

10:58 pm  
Blogger Chad in the Arizona Desert said...

I would just chalk it up to a bad day. No matter how much rest you get, sometimes the body just doesn't want to cooperate with us. I still think your prep has been good so stick with it and focus on January's race.

2:37 am  
Blogger Runner Susan said...

well Ewen, at least it wasn't by five minutes! I'm sure by January your legs will be at least 45 seconds faster.

4:32 am  
Blogger Love2Run said...

Those 91 miles needed more than 1 or 2 rest days to recover from. I'm sure you'll be good to go for it in a few weeks with some speed/pace work mixed in.

10:17 am  
Blogger Thomas said...

You can't train hard and race well at the same time.

Be patient.

10:27 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well done. If you can do 10K in 45:21 after consecutive weeks of 130 Km. 147 Km and 83 Km, with 3 hard sessions in the 83Km week, what might you do after your legs have recovered? This wasn’t the right occasion to seriously disrupt yout training for the sake of ideal race preparation because there wasn’t time to fit in any speed work on fresh legs. After letting your legs recover and then putting in a month or two of higher intensity, lower volume training you will be ready for a good 10K and/or 3K.

5:11 am  
Blogger Lulu said...

Yeah, come on legs.. I don't know why they won't do what they're told.

1:14 pm  
Blogger Phil said...

It's just to hard to make it up at the end after after 3 or 4K above 4:30; nice focus on the last lap though to bring in a 4:23 at the end. I couldn't have kept up with you.

4:31 pm  
Blogger Paco Bailac said...


5:25 am  
Blogger trailblazer777 said...

well thats just about 39 secs not good enough. maybe try starting the first 5k in 21 flat? or not...

seriously though another solid 10,000, hope everything falls into place and you nail a big one in January, just need to finetune things with some focused track intervals I suspect, maybe try doing about 6x1200m's??? Still sub 46 is still a great run around that 4.30 per K mark, hope you are on the cusp of the big breakthrough, all the best in January!

7:59 am  
Blogger Grellan said...

Some good pain training for the next attempt Ewen. Keep plugging away and you'll get there.

9:13 am  
Blogger cindylouwho said...

Great running Ewen great running!

1:19 pm  
Blogger Stu said...

I'm sure if you re-look at the last 10 days you would agree it wasn't an ideal prep.

But still, a good time and with another month of good k's I am sure Jan will see some tapering and a very fast race happening!

10:14 pm  
Blogger jen said...

Congrats on the race- but sorry you missed your PB! (just barely) I hate it when you I start a race and the pace feels hard from the get-go. You still pulled out a great finish time though, well done. :)

5:16 am  
Blogger Dusty said...

When all alone in a race, I find it easier to fall off pace during the 10,000 on the track unless someone is making sure you know each split (not elapsed time, but splits). If you are running next to others, it can pull you - but it is easy for the mind to drift. The 10,000 on the track is mentally hard - you were really close. Don't beat yourself up too bad - think about how close when running alone and how you are going to nab it in January. I agree with the others - a bit more taper and recovery for that PB.

Hope the warm temps and legs hold together for you nicely in January. Let it fire you up to go get it! So close!

1:01 am  
Blogger Tesso said...

Ok now close your eyes, tighten the abs, and imagine being hit in the guts with a massive belly punch.

9:59 am  
Blogger Dr.Rutledge said...

Hi Ewen,
I'm an academic physician (formerly at Harvard and Stanford) who found your blog while looking for the best health writers. I think your writing is great! I would like to feature you in the Running Community on Wellsphere, a top 10 health website that has well over 2 million visitors monthly.

If you would like to learn more, just drop me an email to

11:08 am  
Blogger Scott Brown said...

Hey Doc. R

I hope you're the real thing because our Ewen has a hair trigger temper and it would not be "good for your health" to scam him (see often cited belly punching references).

And besides what would a guy with 23 plus blog comments need with your "2 million visitors a month"?

1:36 pm  
Blogger speedygeoff said...

Hey Scott, My theory, reading between the lines, is that the good Doctor wants to replace you on his staff with Ewen, which is there is a hint of negativity in your comment. Ewen, ignore Scott, go ahead and apply! And remember to provide your bank account details.

2:03 pm  
Blogger Ewen said...

Hey Scott and Spody, what would I know about "health" besides the fact that belly punching is good for it?

I'll be suggesting Dr R visits Tesso's very healthy blog, and I've already told him my bank is Washington Mutual; account number 867-5309.

7:53 pm  
Blogger Rob said...

147K equates to tired legs equates to 28 seconds short of a PB.

9:11 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

wannabemanager said

Ewen, I no longer wish to be your coach. I want to be your manager.

6:14 pm  
Blogger IHateToast said...

haven't read a blog post since before we left kweenzlann, but i had to write just to rub this in:


el nyah nyah!

8:45 am  

Post a Comment

<< Home