Wednesday, October 22, 2014

The Coffee Club Melbourne 10k

I was looking forward to the Melbourne trip as a social occasion more than anything — a short holiday to one of my favourite cities with the prospect of hanging out with Canberra friends Ruth, Dave, Cathy and Liz. During my jog around 'The Tan' late on Friday afternoon I revised my race goal to 'sub-50', a time I'd be happy with on the hilly Melbourne course. That night we enjoyed a lovely Italian meal at Triim on Hardware Lane. I like Melbourne! At the civilized hour of 9.18 AM on Saturday I joined the girls for a 'shake-out' jog along the Yarra (Dave was out riding his bike in preparation for the Australian Duathlon Championships to be held in Adelaide the following weekend). My legs felt okay, but nothing special. That evening we 'carbed up' at Vons on Hardware Lane.

On Sunday morning (very early for me) we walked the 2k from the city to Race HQ near the MCG. The 10k was starting at 7.30 with the half marathon (which Liz and Ruth were racing) half an hour later. Just prior to the start I bumped into Twitter friend Sal and coach Bill near the river, Sal doing run-throughs and very psyched up! She would run an excellent 41:14 on a course where the hills are worth about 30 seconds. My race went well — once up the short hill after the start I found myself running near a lady with her two young children. Their pace was good so I followed them along St Kilda road and around through the tunnel. The kids started slowing on the gentle (but long) climb beside the Royal Botanic Gardens so I moved ahead and selected other distinctive runners to chase.

I ran by feel (and the effort certainly felt quicker than 5-minute k pace!), but did sneak a look at my Garmin at the 5k mark. 24:53 — I'm sure I can double that — we're almost to the high point on the course! I was enjoying myself! Especially running back towards Flinders Street Station; mostly overtaking runners, or at least keeping up with other conservative starters. Finally I was over the last nasty bridge and 'sprinting' up to the finish arch just outside 'The G'. 49:25 — I'll take that! I've raced the 10k in Melbourne before — in 2008 I ran 46:38 at an average heart-rate of 151 (704 heart-beats per km). This year my AHR was 143, so 707 heart-beats per km. I'm not sure when my next 10k race will be but I'd love to run a time in the 46 to 47-minute range. I think a time like that is possible, even for an old bloke!

Ruth, Liz, Cathy and Dave walking to the start beside the beautiful Yarra River 

Relaxed Melbourne runners means there's no problem starting near the front

Enjoying a beautiful Melbourne morning!


Anonymous Anonymous said...

Sounds like you had fun, and a very good run, Ewen! I really like Melbourne too! Maybe I'll aim for this next year. [Miranda]

1:53 pm  
Blogger Cecilia said...

Sounds like a nice controlled run! I'm glad Melbourne's weather worked out for you that day, and the photos look great!

6:41 pm  
Blogger Ewen said...

Thanks Miranda. Great idea - you'd love it. The more the merrier!

Cecilia, I can't remember ever having bad weather on Melbourne trips. Except for when Liz ran the Tan Ultra - we did have 4 seasons THAT day ;)

9:27 pm  
Anonymous Karla @ Run, Karla, Run! said...

Great race and nice job meeting your goal! I've only been to Melbourne once, but I loved the city. My husband scraped another car while we were there (not used to the left side of the road!) and the driver was SO nice about it. Funny memories. I think you can get to 46-47 for sure! Well done!

4:50 am  
Blogger Ewen said...

Thanks Karla! We haven't managed to do that driving in the US (yet). Drove onto the wrong side of the road a couple of times but having two 'observers' gets you back pretty quick!

10:11 pm  
Blogger Mark Watson said...

Another super race report. That's a great pic with you in it Ewen. Plenty of air even along what looks like an uphill part of the course. A popular event given your number resembles something out of our phone book or the score our AB side is capable of over you lot. I too think you'll smash a 46 something and soon.

5:41 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...


That sounds like a very enjoyable race. Now you need to find a good 10K race to go for that sub 47 min before the weather gets too hot. The photo of you, the lady and her two daughters is lovely. I like the fact that both daughters have a much shorter lever arm on the swing leg than any of the oldies in the picture.

5:38 am  
Blogger Ewen said...

Ah Mark, you make me laugh with that AB comment (and cry at the same time!). Interesting re the numbers - there were 7,033 finishers in the 10k, nearly 10,000 in the half, 6,444 in the marathon and 2,883 in the 5k. For a big race I found the crowd about ideal.

Canute, I may run a track 10k (night race) next year if the weather is okay. True about the form of the girls, and they're having such a great time too! Great advertisment for running.

9:15 am  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'd like to run in Melbourne one day, it seems gorgeous on every picture! Great result Ewen, and I'm sure you can meet your 46 goal too!

12:13 am  
Blogger strewth said...

Great time Ewen. It was a fantastic social weekend - so much fun and good food! ��

2:55 pm  
Blogger Ewen said...

Anna, hope you get a chance one day. It's a lovely city - quite different to Sydney. A good choice of races at this one too - 5, 10, 21.1 or 42.2k.

Yes, we made good choices with the food Ruth! Missed Monday coffee though - I'll make it an extra long weekend next year.

3:53 pm  
Blogger Raina R. said...

Well done! And a beautiful day to boot.. Sal was just amazing too. Can't wait to see her go sub 40.
Great heart rate for your pace, Ewen!!

4:01 pm  
Blogger Ewen said...

Thanks Raina. Melbourne's weather can be dodgy so I guess we were lucky in that regard. Me too re Sal going sub-40 - won't be long.

11:33 pm  
Blogger Black Knight said...

Wow I see Ruth again!
Please forgive me but I cannot coach the Wallabies now I have to work other 2 years: Italy cannot survive without my important support!
A nice run at a very good pace, I would like to visit Australia if only my wife weren't scared of flying.

3:31 am  
Blogger Ewen said...

We want you to visit too - the Wallabies will be ready for another coach in 2 years time! Your wife can take medication for flying (like my friend Joy does - it works really well!).

8:53 pm  

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