It has been a week full of little joys. From sporting realisations to Science. Not only did I push myself physically but the International Space Station (ISS) passed directly over Doha on Thursday, treating me to an awesome view as it tracked across the Corniche and over the Gulf towards Iran early on Thursday morning.
45 min run outside: 4.25 miles plus 5KG pack.
15 mile cycle 54:22 / 8 mile run: 2 mile warm up followed by 6 mile conversational with running buddy
Indoor Track Intervals 2K warm up. 7 x 400 meter sprints with 200 meter rest in between
Cycle – 5K easy warm up and down either side of a 10K. Attempted a sub 20min, did 20:54 – need to keep the revs above 85 I think to beat this.
15K club run, included 2 x 4K loop incorporating Crazy Hill.
Easy run – 3.25 junk miles on treadmill 40mins
From The Literal Top
The Universe has spoken and Perth is now off the cards – which is ok, because Marysville is my preferred choice. However, my weakness for running up hills and the ‘excitement fix’ I get from a well-produced race promotion video has added another event to my racing horizon:
The Vertical K
An eight mile trail run up Mt Donna Buang, a 1000 meter ascent. See link for the blog I posted earlier in the week regarding this. The reality of this new and enticing challenge is that it takes place 21 days after my marathon. With proper training, I can succeed.
Approval to be added to the Doha Bay Running Club (DBRC) Facebook group made a major impact to my training schedule this week. Up until now I was reliant on info passed on by the DBRC members I had Facebook friended but now I have access to all the club posts and they are an active lot. It seems everyday someone is posting a run they are planning to do. This is going to impact majorly positively on my training in the coming months.
And in other AWESOME news, I finally managed to go on a run with one of my work chums. We did a fairly relaxed 10K session along the Corniche and he is keen to run some more. We are running again on Monday, at the Pearl. As my training evolves, I hope I can do one of my easy runs with him once a week.
Switching It Up
The Aspire Zone, a large indoor fitness facility built for the Asia Games in the early noughties, is currently running Splash & Dash. On Wednesday night I went down there and did an interval session with the DBRC. Running on the indoor track is great. It felt nice to not have to battle with the heat and humidity.
There are sessions of both swimming and running there – almost every Wednesday and Sunday until the end of August. I am very much looking forward to using both options in the coming weeks.
The Friday morning club run came around quickly this week. We ran a 15K route which included 2 x 4K loops in an area of Doha not too far from where I am staying. This area has a hill Crazy Hill as the club calls it (not sure what its real name is). In many ways it is not much of a hill, a mere 40 meters high. But it’s a noticeable incline. That whole area has been, sort of, terraced and a few of the runners do their hill running training around there. This area has potential for future running.
However, a week of manic bike sessions, extra mileage, speed intervals and now hills, I am feeling it in week three. In fact I was totally wiped. I spent most of Friday trying not to fall asleep. So on Saturday, I ran my mandatory ‘easy run’ the way the experts say: 40mins at 120% marathon pace (or there about) a slow 3 ¼ miles at 12mins a mile. It was slow, yes, but I felt loose and rejuvenated by the end of it. There is something to this running slow for recovery.
The Look Ahead
If I keep this up, I will be running 35ish miles per week by the end of July. Next week I will give Spin a go and do more speed intervals. I also feel like I am getting the hang of the heat and humidity which means I can begin to think about extending my short runs and occasionally swapping them out for more specific training. It’s funny, last time I did this I used to look forward to the ‘easy run’ sessions and find ways to avoid the more targeted sessions. But now, I find myself wishing the weeks or the days were longer. It feels like I am not doing enough. I think I just need to be patient.