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The Windy Road to Nowhere



  • Saturday 3rd Feb: 10 miles in 72 (7:12)

    After a couple of weekends of long hard runs and this weeks yasso session, I’d a medium length run today as a step back week. Wind was bitterly cold, and I considered cutting this one short when it started raining on top of it, but glad I did the 10 miles instead of 7. Legs felt fairly heavy, especially when running uphill into the wind, but pace decent.

    In other news, my garmin 405 might finally need to be put out to stud. It’s died on a few runs lately, and might only stay alive for about 2.5 hours off a full charge, that won’t do. To be fair, I’ve had it 7 years, it’s logged 9,000 odd miles and gotten two stays of execution. are doing the 230 for £165 which seems good. Can’t justify the big bucks for the 630, don’t think I’d use half of the functionality. 230 seems to be well received.

  • Monday 5th Feb: 4.1 miles in 29:40 (7:14)
    Cold, windy and icy road conditions aren’t making for much running in the early mornings, but this one was ok, few icy spots, but not overly dangerous.

    Thursday 8th Feb: 10.13 miles in 1:07 (6:37)
    At the track, had it all to myself this week, nice conditions. Ran 6:27 average pace for 9 miles, then did a bit of a cool down.

  • Sat 10th Feb: 17 miles in 2:05 (7:25)

    Legs were very stiff and heavy heading out this morning, wasn’t really sure if I was up for this length of a run, but I’d a couple of messages to run in Collon and Dunleer, so got on with it. Weather was completely dry, which I wasn’t expecting, so ended up fairly enjoying this run, and pace felt comfortable.

  • Tuesday 13th Feb: 4.1 miles in 28:58 (7:04)
    Very cold and windy weather for running, a few iffy spots of ice/snow on higher ground. Legs felt pretty achy after this run.

    Thursday 15th Feb: 4 miles in 29:23 (7:21)

    Left shin just plain sore for a couple of days, I’m not sure what it is. There’s a lot of variables; new runners, cold weather, running about 1km most days on the school yard with my class wearing shoes, but there’s quite a bit of discomfort down my shin. Hopefully not shin splints or anything that’ll mean a break from training, I’ll have to monitor it over the next few days. I might skip on any more running for the rest of the week and hope for a quick recovery.

  • Thursday 22nd February:4.1 miles in 31 minutes

    Tester to see if the pain was gone, I was fine for about a mile, but pain was fairly acute after a while. Not happy, proper break required.

    Wednesday 7 March: 4.1 miles in 30:10 (7:22)

    Out yesterday, no pain, very happy.

    Thursday 8 March 4.5 miles in 33:15 (7:23)

    Fitness slipped back a fair bit, but pain in shin gone. I’ll go easy for a while. Any chance of sub3 in Manchester gone, but that’s fine.

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  • Tuesday 13th March am: 2 miles in 14:30
    I’d a cold over the weekend that I didn’t want to turn worse, so no running. Only a short run out yesterday morning, but body felt good.
    Pm: 6.5 miles in 43:40 (6:43)
    Down at the track with the two older kids, easy warm-up mile, 2-4 in 6:3x range, 5 at 6:25 and cool down half mile at the end. Moving freely on the leg now, good to be back.
    Losing 4 weeks just as I was stepping up the training was pretty frustrating, but part and parcel of running. Sub3 a distant dream, but that’ll come again.

  • 15 March: 6.2 miles in 45:30 (7:20)
    19 March: 3.1 miles in 23:40 (7:37)
    29 March: 6.2 miles in 47:10 (7:37) pushing buggy with 2 youngest
    31 March: 10 miles in 72:25 (7:15) HR172
    4 April: 4.1 miles in 30:10 (7:21) HR159
    6 April: 4 miles in 30 (7:30) HR158

    So, that was my build up to the Manchester marathon, shin splints, snowed in, ice, chest infection amongst the issues. Anyhow, arrived in Manchester hopeful of running a time in and around 3:20.

  • Manchester marathon: 26.2 in 3:16:52 (7:28) Avg HR172

    I stayed in Cheshire Thursday and Friday with family, but we got a hotel a few tram stops from Trafford on Saturday. Rocked up to the start line about 8:15, took a few pics and got ready. Loose plan was to stay with 3:30 pace group for first couple of miles and then move on if I was feeling it. I set my virtual pacer for a 3:20 , so there was plenty of flexibility.

    First couple of miles flew by, and I decided there was no issues and the pace group was too packed, so I moved on.
    7:25, 7:22, 7:14, 7:22, 7:30

    Weather was pretty cool, and on mile 6, I stopped for a quick pit stop, didn’t rush back to where I was, but generally, kept it steady and reserved energy. Nothing memorable about the course and nothing to report, just going nicely. Took on gels and water.
    7:47, 7:27, 7:22, 7:29, 7:25

    Between 11 and 15, I was feeling alright, another pit stop and then, decided to up the pace. There was a good atmosphere around halfway in Acrington I think. Spent a little while running with a Bohermeen runner. Felt strong and was moving comfortably.
    7:34, 7:34, 7:14, 7:18, 7:27

    Between 16 and 20 was probably when I was at my best, was motoring nicely. Spent a while thinking about what could have been if training had gone to plan, but just enjoyed it.
    7:30, 7:10, 7:07, 7:11, 7:11

    Through 20, I started feeling it a bit, maybe I’d over cooked the previous half hour, but pace was still reasonably fine. By 25 miles, I was just hanging on a bit. Having passed out about 400-500 people, I started losing a few places, but the end was in sight.
    7:06, 7:27, 7:32, 7:43, 7:54

    Crossing through 26 miles, the crowd finally thickened up a bit, atmosphere was a bit dead, so I did a bit of cheerleading, showboating and something resembling running fast for the last 385 yards. Mrs TPP gave me a big shout out and I crossed very happy to dip under 3:17.

  • Seems like you enjoyed it A, I done it a few years back (when it was short!) and really enjoyed the course. The bit out in the countryside about 22m was the only downer.

    Any plans to rock a sub 3 this year?

  • Seems like you enjoyed it A, I done it a few years back (when it was short!) and really enjoyed the course. The bit out in the countryside about 22m was the only downer.

    Any plans to rock a sub 3 this year?

    Yeah, I’d hope to knock out a sub3 later in the year. I was gearing up nicely in January, so I don’t think I’m over the hill just yet. I really enjoyed DCM last year, and haven’t gone under 3 in Dublin, so considering options.

    I thought the race was fine, no issues with organization or anything, but nothing memorable about the course. I wouldn’t be rushing back to do it again, but little to find fault with all the same.

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  • Wednesday 11th Apr: 4 miles in 28:04 (7:01)

    Went into the track with my 7 year old. Wasn’t sure what I was doing. Legs were a bit heavy, but I was grand after a couple of miles, tipping around with PConn. Last mile warm down with the young fella.
    7:03, 6:35, 6:25, 7:58

    Fri 13th: 4.1 miles in 31:35 (7:42) AvHR:158
    Handy run around the block. I’ve decided, rightly or wrongly, that my shins have been slightly uncomfortable due to not actually running enough, and certainly not enough easy running. With that in mind, I did an easy run. I will, however, see what’s the problem with the hip.

    Saturday 14th: 5.7 miles in 42:30 (7:28) HR159
    Easy run around the roads after leaving one of the kids at football training. Went very handy the first while, moving freely after the marathon.

    I’ve been having a quick read over the first year of this log. I want to get back to running marathons under 3, racing more regularly, and just running more. Our 4th child is now 1, and there won’t be any more. There’s no excuses now for not running 5 days a week, and getting back into shape.

  • Tuesday 17April: 5:xx in 7/3x pace

    Watch died halfway around this run, easy pace and effort

    Thursday 19th/ 5.2 miles in 37:30 (7:12) Av HR:158

    Nice handy run at the track in Dunleer, kept effort easy and just picked it up slightly towards the end. Beautiful weather, proper heat finally.

    Went for a physio session during the week. ITB causing a bubble of fluid around the hip, nothing to be concerned about, and am on a programme to strengthen the area. Hoped to get out for a couple of miles today, but the day getting away on me.

  • Sat 21st April: 6 miles at 7:30 pace

    Down in the mountains in Connemara for the weekend, lovely run through the forest on trails.

    Tuesday 24th: 7.6 miles in 57:40 (7:36) AvHR:159
    Nice easy medium length run, weather finally starting to improve a bit. Body feeling fine, but running easy for a bit will be good for me.

    Wednesday 25: 4.1 miles in 31:35 (7:42)

    Easy run around the block, spring time still clinging on, bitterly cold wind, but good to be running regularly for the first time in a while.

    Thursday 26th: 6.1 miles in 45:40 7:29

    Dinner just an hour before I was running so took it very easy the first 2-3 miles, about 8:00 pace. Dropped down to 6:40-50 pace for the last two miles.

  • Sat 28 April: 5.6 miles in 41 (7:10) AHR:163
    Run around the Hill Of Rath when the young buck was at soccer training. Beautiful weather.

    Monday 30th: 5.2 miles in 36:50 (7:05) AHR: 161
    Popes Cross and the Old road. So good to be able to get out running after the kids all go to bed, long evenings are great. HR low for the pace, bit of fitness coming back I hope.

    Wednesday 2nd May:4.1 miles in 29 (7:05)
    Quick run around Fieldstown.threw in two 6:xx miles in a bit of injection of pace. Most of the little niggles seem to have cleared up thankfully.

    Sunday 6th May: 14 miles in 1:48 (7:44) AvHR: 159
    Very hot afternoon and my body a bit sore from gardening, so I took the pace easy. Lovely route through Broomfield in Co Meath, and back through Collon and Tinure. Very hilly country, good workout.

    Monday 7th May: 8 hours cutting turf

    Started at 7:40. Two half hour breaks, and finished about half four. About 100 bags worth I’d say. Dug down deeper in the bog so should be good stuff.

  • Did the kids bring ya bottled milk corked sloppily with paper? And were you nicking and slicing them sods neatly, eh?

  • Itziger wrote: »
    Did the kids bring ya bottled milk corked sloppily with paper? And were you nicking and slicing them sods neatly, eh?

    I’d the two older ones with me, cheerleading. They kept me supplied with a steady stream of orange dilute alright. Tae and sangwidges were the lunch options. Hard work, nice and neat at the start of the day, but towards the end, I was flinging sods all over the bog.

  • What's your max HR?

  • pconn062 wrote: »
    What's your max HR?

    191 is what I was showing for the last 100m of the marathon in Manchester. I know if I’m doing hill springing, I’m hitting close to 185. I’m not sure how to interpret the data yet. Av HR for the marathon distance was 172, which is 90% of max. My limited understanding of HR would suggest that either I performed very well based on fitness, my maximum HR is higher than 190, or I am well adapted to marathons.

  • Weds 9th May: 4.1 miles in 30:10 (7:22) AvHR 157
    Friday 11th: 4.1 miles in 30:28 (7:26) AvHR: 159
    Sunday 13th: 5.85 miles in 47:05 (8:03)
    Can’t remember the first two, on the 3rd run, I was a touch hungover.

    Monday 14th: 7.5 miles in 54:07 (7:13) AvHR 162
    After Sunday, I felt like getting a half decent, longer run in so went off at 8:30 after all the kids went to bed. Lovely run down by Sandpit. Long evenings making a massive difference to the training, I’m finding.

    Wednesday 16th:

  • Wednesday 16th: 2 miles with a bit of speed work
    1km in 3:34
    600m in 2:40
    Couple of 80/100 meter sprints
    Athletics coaching with school kids

    Thursday 17th: 10.9 miles in 1:18 (7:15)

    I was feeling pretty fatigued at the start of this one, but got into it nicely. Hilly route by Dunleer, Philipstown and Dromin. Tagged on a couple of fast miles at the tail end. 6:45, 6:22, 6:51
    Felt great to be running fast again on a longish run.

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  • Monday 21st May: 4.2 miles in 28:35 (6:53)
    Bit of a tempo run, if you had to put a name on it. 6:58, 6:38, 6:37, 7:16 up the hill.

    Wednesday: random distances and paces on the track coaching 2nd and 6th Class
    800m in 3:50
    400m in 90
    400m in 65

    Thursday 24th: 16 miles in 1:56 (7:16) AvHR 167
    Beautiful summer weather and 2 hours to burn in Dunleer. Headed out through Grangebellew, Gallstone Road, across by Rathesker, Philipstown and Dromin. I was taking the pace nice and conservative until I decided on a whim to add the extra loop at the end by Philipstown, so had to motor a bit. Faster miles at the end were 7:01, 6:55, 6:48, 6:56, 6:35, 6:52
    I was fairly wrecked after that one. Unintended glycogen depletion, felt ropey for a couple of hours, but very pleased to put in a decent effort on complete empty.

    Friday 25th: 4 miles in 28:50 (7:11)
    Spent the day painting fences and had the first barbecue of the season. Beautiful weather altogether. Put all the kids to bed and threw on the runners to run down to the school to vote. Bit of speed in the middle 6:26, 6:50

    Training going well lately. The body is feeling great, the mind good, motivation high, and progress steady. I’m enjoying putting fast miles into most runs now, it’s an approach that works well for me. Obviously I’ll need to up the mileage, it’s been a long long time since I’ve ran 50 mile weeks, which really is what’s required to hit proper targets in marathons. Anyway, things going the right direction.

  • Saturday 26th May:5.65 miles in 40:55 (7:14)
    Quick run around the Hill of Rath when the young fella was at football. Couple of fast miles, 6:50 and 6:44.

    Tuesday 29th: 7.5 miles in 53:05 (7:05)

    Beautiful evening for running, not back till 10 and still bright and warm. Threw down the hammer for a good part of this run: 7:33, 6:51, 6:42, 6:41, 7:22, 6:43, 7:43, 3:25
    Some really rough hills up our way, so Mile 7, the slowest, by far the biggest effort levels.

    Wednesday 30th: 2-3 miles at random paces.
    Couple of fast laps, a bit of hurdles and easy running at the track with school.

    Thursday 31st: 8.5 miles in 57:30 (6:47) AvHR 171
    More or less ran hard for an hour around Dunleer Philipstown areas. I’d an hour to get it done so motored. Very warm, 20 degrees, but I’m a fan of the heat. Hilly first few miles, but downhill back through Dromin gives opportunity for a bit of speed. Very enjoyable run.
    7:24, 6:49, 6:45, 6:51, 6:58, 6:24, 6:23, 6:30, 3:27

  • Tuesday 5th June: 7 miles in 50:30 (7:12) AvHR 159
    Nice sociable trot around Dunleer with a friend I hadn’t seen in a while. Fairly even pace and effort

    Wednesday 6th am: 2 miles at random paces
    800m in 2:48, 400m in 67, 600m in 2:07

    Pm: 7.5miles total in 46:30
    Couple of laps warmup, then 12 minutes tempo, and 2x3k
    Didn’t time any of it properly, but 3ks seemed about 11:40 or so. A good tough session, need work on speed.

    Friday 8th June: 5k in 22:50.
    Early morning trot around local roads.

    Sunday 10th: 4 hours cutting turf, and 5 miles in 35:50 (7:10)

    I took in about 50 bags of turf on Saturday that I’d cut only 4 weeks ago, serious weather in Connemara. Decided to spend Sunday morning productively, and did a power of work. Shed will be well stacked up for the winter.

  • Been a while since I’ve updated here.

    13th June: 2 miles or so, coaching/racing against 6th class.
    Highlight of this was a 400m in 63 seconds. I always try a race whereby the kids are doing 4x100m relay, and I’m running the whole thing. It’s been about 4 or 5 years since I ran that fast for 400m.

    Busy last week of school concluded with my class presenting me with a new Garmin 235. Lovely present to get, very impressed with the watch.

    Saturday 23rd June: 5.6 miles in 39:50 (7:07) AvHR 166
    Quick run around Hill of Rath testing out the new watch. Nice to be back running after a frantic week with one of the kids in hospital all week, and 4 out of 6 family members sick.

    Sunday 24th June: 4 miles in 32:38 (8:08) AvHR 148

    Felt like hell on this run, I think I’d a touch of the virus the others had, high temperature, etc. but got away with it.

    Friday 29th June: 4 miles in 30 minutes (7:30) AvHR 145

    Off to France on our holidays. Exploring the Normandy countryside and taking home baguettes and croissants from the boulangerie.

    I’m not convinced the HRM on the 235 is totally accurate.

    Sunday 1st July: 5 miles in 36:25 (7:16) AvHR 174
    Faster loop this time, no baguettes unfortunately, shops don’t open on Sunday.

    Tuesday 3rd July: 5 miles in 35:43 (7:09) AvHR 176
    Good fast couple of miles over a very hilly route, nice to be pushing it on a bit.

    Friday 6th July: 8 miles cycling
    I’d the two smaller kids in a trailer, and we all headed off on rental bikes for the afternoon around Lac Du Dac in Ploermel, Brittany. Lovely family day out and about.

    Sunday 8th July: 13.1 miles in 1:33 (7:10) AvHR 171
    This was on a beautiful Greenway, very quiet and scenic. Pushed the pace on a little, fast miles were 6:58, 6:42, 6:49. Very hot by the time I finished up here, touching 32 degrees.

    No running then for a couple of days as we went to a couple of stages of the Tour de France and then got home.

    Friday 13 July: 4 miles in 30:30 (7:39) AvHR 166

    This was a new one for me, laps of the garden. It’s 200m around the garden, and on a decent enough hill. Kids all in bed and Mrs TPP out. Really enjoyed this, and it’s definitely something I’ll be doing again.

    Sunday 15th: 7.5 miles in 57:57 (7:44) AvHR 164

    Pretty sluggish on this run around Sandpit, fairly hot and humid, but nice to be back on some of my regular routes.

    Monday 16th: 10 miles in 1:17 (7:43) AvHR 161

    Very similar route to the previous day. Just nice slow running, building up a bit of mileage.

    Wednesday 18th: 8.25 miles in 1:01 (7:30) AvHR 159
    This was an unplanned but very enjoyable run. I was getting something checked on one of the cars in drogheda, the guy in services suggested I go off for a run for an hour while he checked the car. Excellent suggestion, I thought. Didn’t have proper gear on, but made do. Ran out Donore direction, then through Oldbridge, and back along the Boyne ramparts. Really beautiful run.

  • Sunday 22nd July: 4 miles in 31:20 (7:49) AvHR 150

    We spent a few days in Connemara, but unfortunately the water from our spring up the mountains ran dry, so with no way to wash, no way to run. Took in the second bank of turf, nice full shed of top quality stuff now. Took in a Gavin James concert too, and got backstage with my eldest to meet him. Amazing singer, and a totally sound lad.

    Anyway, drove home Sunday and managed a few miles in the evening.

    Monday 23rd: 8 miles in 59:40 (7:27) AvHR 167

    Run home from Drogheda, adding a loop along the Boyne from Oldbridge. Very hot, road surface practically melting.

    Thursday 26th am: 8 miles in 61:10 (7:39) AvHR 165
    Left the wife’s car in for a service in the morning. Ran home, doing a couple of messages en route. Last 2 miles tough, as I was intent on keeping them under 8:00. Not easy in that heat, 22degrees at 10am!!

    Thursday pm: 6.2 miles in 43:40 (7:03) AvHR 169

    Run back to collect the car. Hotter again, but downhill to drogheda helps a lot, so did 4 miles under 7:00 pace. Good workout.

    Mileage finally creeping up a bit, I should be running more, but I’m not. Autumn schedule is looking like last year, Monaghan marathon and cross country running.

  • Sun 29th July: 4.1 miles in 29:22 (7:10)

    Tuesday 31st July: 7.5 miles in 52:12 (6:58)

    Fastest run I’d done in a while, felt good to push the pace on a little bit.

  • The Ned Run 2018 5 mile race report:

    This is one of my go-to races up at home in Scotstown. I hadn’t done it in a couple of years, so was good to be back. A couple of cousins and my uncle who lives in Florida, along with my dad, mother and daughter were all lining up. We’d a bbq about 4:30, and on my warmup mile at 7, I was still tasting burgers, glad I didn’t join my cousins on pre-race beers.

    I’ve a couple of 3rd place finishes and 4ths in this race to my name, but reckoned sub30 would be slightly out of reach, and top 10 was a possibility. At the start, the local kids always go all ninja style for the first 400m up to the village, but by the time we turned at the crossroads, I was in 5th or 6th. 1, 2 and 3 were gone for dust already, but I knew I’d have company from 4th-10th place all quite close. Mile 1 in 6:01 as I turned towards Hollywood lake.

    The guy in front of me had looked strong, but faltered a lot on the hill, so I comfortably went past him, into 4th I think. Working hard, possibly too hard, Mile 2: 6:13.

    The 3rd mile has a net downhill, so it’s a chance to get a bit of rhythm back, but still very hard work, 6:08.

    On the Bog Road now, familiar territory, I heard two guys cruising up to me. The first just blitzed me, but I managed to hang onto the shirttails of the second, then took back 5th, and moved away. Mile 4: 6:21.

    Running past my parents house, with my sister and another cousin cheering me on, some guy just bombed past me. Gone. I was really struggling, but didn’t want to give up another place. Home town support was great, with plenty of people giving me a shout up in the village. Flew down the hill for the bridge, with someone hot on my heels. I knew I’d have to go for a fast long run in, as I don’t have a 20m burst at the end, so emptied the tank completely heading past my old primary school, wife and 3 of the kids roaring me on, 30:40 on the clock, 6th place. Totally knackered. Delighted with the run. My 9 year old daughter came cruising along shortly afterwards, finishing in 48 minutes, having been told to let loose by my mother after a mile. She finished in 52 minutes, disappointed as she’d ran 51 the previous year. Somebody forgot to tell her she’s 75 years old! My father, uncle and another of their old school friends came along, finishing in 1:27. My dad reckoned they spent too much time talking to people up the street, and could have been quicker!! Competitive lot!

    Great spread down at the football field, atmosphere good, lots of talk about how Monaghan were going to beat Galway, and home for beers. Nice to be back racing

  • Sunday 4th August: 7.5 miles in 56:58 (7:36) AvHR 151

    We headed up to Donegal in Saturday to spend a couple of days with friends who bought a new house near Rossnowlagh. Took this route down towards the beach, then back up on Wild Atlantic Way for couple of miles, then back up the hills. Very enjoyable.

    Monday 5th August: 8 miles in 58:13: (7:17) AvHR 157

    Similar route, but different road on the way back. I was given the task of reconnaissance for dogs in the area. Only one minor scare, when an enormous old hairy Alsatian came bounding in my direction, only to stop when his lead stopped him mauling me to death. Tagged on a couple of fast miles at the end of this. 6:55, 6:45, 6:38.

    Wednesday 7th : 5k in 18:55 and 4x300m at 60 seconds each.

    Track session with PConn’s group. Pretty much ran the 5k by myself, comfortably hard I’d say, without butchering myself. The 300s were fine, apart from the one I tried to pace, which was a balls.

    Friday 9th: 15 miles in 1:55 (7:41)

    I got up at 9:30 hoping to get out quickly for this, but for one reason or another, didn’t get out until 11:15. No breakfast, so I knew this would be tough towards the end. Went on a route through Sandpit and Togher that I hadn’t taken before. A few nasty little hills, along with a stiff breeze added to the fun, but good effort, despite finishing slow up the hills. Longest run since April. Fair amount of work to be done between now and the end of September.

  • 13 August: 6 miles in 43:10 (7:11)

    16 August: 4.1 miles in 29:27

    17 August:7.5 miles in 55:50 (7:27)

    18 August: 9.5 miles in 1:12 (7:35)
    Very hot afternoon, really struggled on the hills

    Wednesday 22nd: 5.75 miles in 46:10
    Slow run around Oldbridge by myself when kids were training. Got a bit lost down an overgrown path on banks of the Boyne, destroyed by nettles

    Friday 24th: 10 miles in 1:13 (7:19)

    Much more comfortable than previous week, with 7 miles at 6:50 pace. Felt it afterwards

    Saturday 25th: 7.6 miles in 53:40

    Big lump of a session with the club at Oldbridge. Couple of easy miles, then 5, 6, 7 and 8 minutes hard in 6:10-6:16 pace. Toughest session in an age

    Monday 26th: 16 miles in 2:04 (7:46)

    Pace was about 7:20-7:30 for 13 miles, but wind was very strong against me on last 3 miles. Good to get it done first thing

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  • Weds 29 August: 7.4 miles in 51 minutes

    Cross country session with the club in Oldbridge. 4, 3, 2, 1 minutes, 5 minute tempo, then 1, 2, 3, 4. Hard work, but enjoyable to be out running fast.