Monday, May 18, 2009

One quarter of a good Half in Sydney

I enjoyed my weekend in Sydney — all of it but for the last 30 minutes of the SMH Half Marathon on Sunday. The morning dawned with stunning perfection. I managed to squeeze sufficiently close to the front of the 8,400-plus field prior to the start — it only took 22 seconds to cross the timing mats. Soon enough I was able to find space to run at the speed I wanted. It was exciting to be running through the city amongst thousands of like-minded people, all following 2000 Olympic steeplechase gold medallist Reuben Kosgei.

We turned left into Hunter Street, then sped downhill towards Circular Quay and The Rocks. I must have been channelling Scott Brown's positivity as I ran at M50 PB pace. 23:13 at 5k. If I could keep that going I'd run 98 minutes! Unfortunately it was not to be — I felt sort of okay through the next 5k (24:58) but just as JD and Tesso blew past I felt suddenly tired. The rest of my race was spent trying to preserve the pace I happened to be running at the time. The 5k to 15k took 24:57 but the next 5k was a very pear-shaped 26:50. I knew I was slowing by the hundreds of runners that went past. I was extremely happy to finally see the finish line in beautiful Hyde Park. My chip time was 1:45:36 (2,339th place).

So, it was a pretty ordinary race. I think I'll run the half marathon at the Gold Coast. I want to run faster!

5k splits and average heart-rates: 23:13 (150), 24:58 (150), 24:57 (147), 26:50 (145), 5:38 (151).

view of st mary's and hyde parkHotel room view of Hyde Park and St Mary's Cathederal where the race started


Blogger Grellan said...

Well done Ewen. Strange that your HR should drop after 10k. It must have been your legs that suffered?

5:00 pm  
Blogger RICK'S RUNNING said...

On a 'POSITIVE' note just think of the 6,000 people behind you!

6:31 pm  
Blogger RICK'S RUNNING said...

On a 'POSITIVE' Note 2, You ran a hell of a lot faster than a team mate did for the second half of the London marathon, he blow up at half way and did the second half in 2 hours! I should point out he is a 1.17 half marathon runner!!!OOch!!!
On a 'POSITIVE' note 3, good luck on THE GOLD COAST!

6:44 pm  
Blogger Bruce said...

Better luck at the Gold Coast i guess, at least you had a great day by the looks.

6:55 pm  
Blogger Scott Brown said...

Geezas Ewen if your going to run like me your going to have to do worse than that. Now in the Gold Coast half drop down to 8 seconds off your most recent PB!

Or stay at home, as us tough guys like to say ;)

7:36 pm  
Blogger Luckylegs said...

Try smiling when you're running...seems to work for me!

7:40 pm  
Blogger Two Fruits said...

Good effort, more to enjoy a weekend away than trying to run a PB in the middle of 8000 others.
BTW, it's very difficult to run a PW. Gold Coast in July, sounds good to me. Take a week or two off work, get out of the winter for a while.

7:50 pm  
Blogger TokyoRacer said...

Yes, the heart rates were interesting. Any idea/analysis why that was so?
I don't know much about heart rates...maybe if Lacey throws in a comment....

8:07 pm  
Blogger Thomas said...

I guess the HR indicates that you started too fast. Not that I blame you, being guilty of the same in my own most recent race.

8:15 pm  
Blogger strewth said...

Well done Ewen - you beat more than6000 people - that's pretty cool!

9:40 pm  
Blogger speedygeoff said...

That's a good run, well done.

9:50 pm  
Blogger Superflake said...

I thought I recognised the bearded wombat overtake me down Hunter St on the 1st lap. Just run faster like LL did next time Ewen.

10:38 pm  
Blogger Love2Run said...

I wonder if a) you're just a bit overtired from all those miles lately (see your log) or b) God Forbid but not enough longer runs of 20+km? You've been putting in the miles but I wonder if you are short on endurance without a few more 2hr'ish runs. Just a thought.

11:24 pm  
Blogger Dusty said...

This made me recall my half in December with the wrong shoes. I felt great for almost 10 miles, then my feet were bigger than my shoes. To watch the people stream by when I felt so great ealier. I agree - I want to do another one and do the whole thing the way the start felt! You will do awesome at Gold Coast!

kudos on the race & I completely agree with Rick - 6,000 people behind you!!

12:16 am  
Blogger Chad in the AZ Desert said...

Sounds like a tough second half of the race, but you still managed a solid time. Glad to hear you are already eyeing the next half on the schedule.

6:17 am  
Blogger rinus said...

Not a bad running time and oké, you want run faster, the next time you run faster!.
Thanks for your support on my blog and iam verry happy whit my new PR on the marathon, its like a dream what was waiting for 20 marathons !!!.
Have fun.

6:25 am  
Blogger Ewen said...

TokyoRacer, I think it was plain tiredness as alluded to by Mike - both from the recent mileage and not enough sleep in previous days. Usually I'd be able to average a HR of 150 (90%) for a half. I was too tired to keep the HR up.

Also, the course has two significant hills per lap - I was very weak up the hills on the second lap, which again, I think, was due to tiredness.

Scott, I'll do my very best to run 1:40:56 at the Gold Coast - just for you ;)

4:12 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Well done, but a bit frustrating. Your good run in Nail Can a few weeks ago suggests that your current aerobic capacity is not far below your M50 best, and your Hadd test confirms this. Your current training volume should get you even fitter,but give yourself enough rest, especially when things are busy at work. Good luck for the Gold Coast.

5:00 pm  
Blogger Sling Runner said...

well done! I notice the last 6k of the race was the slowest (tiredness???). Perhaps you might wanna try progression runs or picking up the pace for the last few ks in your long runs.

5:01 pm  
Blogger iliketoast said...

Out too hard, home too slow as the old saying goes. Good practice for GC. Better than 6000 and the other 5 million Syndey-siders.

7:16 pm  
Anonymous Em said...

GC is the best course for a HM PB.

10km with my brother for me :-)

8:44 pm  
Blogger Stu said...

As a few others have mentioned/queried, did you freshen up at all for the HM???

I would suggest if you want to race a certain race well, then you need to repsect the race and allow your body to freshen for that race!

9:57 pm  
Blogger jen said...

Congrats on the run! Wish we could run a race together- we always post the same times. Maybe we could push each other to a big PR... or at least it would be fun. :)

10:55 pm  
Blogger Rob said...

You will do better a the Gold Coast Ewen. There are no ups and downs to confuse you.

9:22 pm  
Blogger 2P said...

If you never start hard then you will never find your potential.

Relax & go faster *old 2P saying* :)

9:10 am  
Blogger Tesso said...

You used too much energy with that pathetic belly punch attempt, that's what slowed you down.

9:03 am  
Blogger bill carter said...

Well done Ewen!

I do believe for that first part of the race you were actually channeling a Kenyan as you were flying. I can only imagine how cool it would have been to be running in Sydney with all those runners.


Congrats again on a fine race.

2:05 am  
Blogger Giorgio said...

Hi Ewen,

thanks for your answer written on strewth's blog. I've never been in Australia, but I think most Australian people as adventurous and loving the outdoor life.


11:38 pm  
Blogger Thomas said...

Ewen, yes I do feel some lactic buildup at the end of a 30 sec hill sprint. I know about Hudson's very short sprints, but his athletes do them on insanely steep hills. I didn't find anything as steep as 30% around here; at least nothing with a decent footing.

1:53 am  
Blogger Runner Susan said...

Great time Ewen, try running a half mara with me, it would be more fun and I can guarantee no lactic acid build up because your walk is as fast as my fast run.

8:58 am  

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