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  • Last Thursday finally paid off! I suppose making myself do 5k with tired legs on Saturday morning probably toughened me up a bit too.

    My brother dragged me out for a run this afternoon. We said we'd do our usual 8 laps and get out of there again because the weather was miserable. I told him I'd aim to do it in about 27 minutes, getting the 5k done in 26, and we did the first two laps together at my pace.

    After that he fell behind and I upped the ante. Brought the km time down from 5:12 to 5:07 to 5:02 to 5:01 and then charged through the last lap to finish 5.01 km in 24:45. I really didn't expect that today. Thrilled to finally hit a target that I set back on New Year's Day.

  • Nice one, well done! All the better when it's unexpected too - what a nice surprise :)

  • eyrie wrote: »
    Nice one, well done! All the better when it's unexpected too - what a nice surprise :)

    Thanks! I have to decide now if I should go and try to match that time at parkrun on Saturday, or if I should volunteer instead. The course is a bit more challenging than the track I like to train on.

    I'm after achieving a second feat today. I managed my 5 mile run in Cratloe Woods in 43:12. I usually take a break for water at the half way barrier, but powered through the whole thing today without stopping. I wanted to do inside 45 minutes. Smashed it today.

    I'm thinking of going for my 10k target on Friday and seeing if I can build up to 10 miles by the end of the month. Will wait and see how I'm feeling after work tomorrow.

    Great to hit my 5k and 5 mile targets at long last. I really thought I'd do it back in the spring, but didn't realize just how unfit I'd become since my peak in 2013.

  • I'm thinking of going for my 10k target on Friday and seeing if I can build up to 10 miles by the end of the month. Will wait and see how I'm feeling after work tomorrow.

    Arranged to meet a friend who's in the process of training for a marathon. He has a few nice routes mapped out over different distances around the city. I told him I was hoping to do 10 km in 55 minutes. He told me we were going to do it in 52.

    He was right. We started quick and had 2k done in 10 minutes. Average pace dropped to 5:11 over the next 2k, and then 5:14, but at that point we were half-way there and still feeling strong. We kept the average at 5:14 from then on, up until the final kilometre.

    Managed 5 miles in 41:55 (a new PB for that distance too, and a nice improvement from the hilly route on Wednesday) and knew I had enough in the tank to keep going for my own target. We were on the flat of the canal bank at that point and kicked on to hit 9km in 47:00.

    I told my friend we were going to need to kick on again to hit his 52 minute target and he took me at my word and took off in front of me! He had the energy and the breath to count down 500 metres, 400, 300, 200, 100, and I managed to kick through them to finish with a few seconds to spare. Our final km proved to be our fastest one of the day despite it being mostly up-hill.

    Target: sub 55:00.
    Achieved: 51:58.

    Next goal: 10 miles in sub 1:25:00.

    I'll marshal at parkrun in the morning and think about doing some sprints in the afternoon if I've recovered enough from today. If not, I'll rest my bones until Sunday. I still need a sub 25 minute parkrun before I'll really be happy. Should do that on the 18th.

  • If you're looking for a 5K PB you should try the ULRC Races on Thursday night...there's only 1 left I think but it's a much faster course than the UL Parkrun

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  • Cartman78 wrote: »
    If you're looking for a 5K PB you should try the ULRC Races on Thursday night...there's only 1 left I think but it's a much faster course than the UL Parkrun

    That sounds like an excellent series. I'll try to take part in it properly in the spring. Thanks for the heads-up!

  • Wednesday 15th November

    Run In The Dark (Limerick) at the UL Boatclub, organised by Limerick Triathlon Club. It was very well marshalled, and I was impressed with the registration/pack collection area. The course had to be changed at the last minute due to the amount of traffic around UL. The 10k run was only a few metres over 9km in the end. Still a lovely night for a run, and a great atmosphere.

    It was very congested at the start. I'd been hoping to maintain a 5:20 pace, but I did the first ten minutes at 6:15 pace. Had a bit more space to start over-taking people then. Eventually managed to do the 9k in 50 minutes.

    Saturday 18th November

    Limerick parkrun. Finally managed what I've been rambling on about here for the last few months. :)

    24:55 by my own timer. Should be getting the text/email with the "official" time shortly after 12:00.

    Delighted with that. I felt awful getting out of bed and thought I'd do well to hit 25:30, but managed 3.97k in the first 20 minutes and finished strong. :)

  • A few updates this week. Very little done in terms of speed work, but getting lots of miles in the legs (by my standards anyway!)

    Tuesday 21st November

    1. Run Rise - Met the lads at 07:35. It was wet. Very wet. We decided we'd do a short run and quit before we got washed away. It should have been 4.5km but one of the guys took a wrong turn so we had to follow him. Ended up stopping the clock at 3.7km in 24:00.

    2. 8 Mile Road - A challenge I've been thinking about doing for a while. Decided I'd bite the bullet and do it to make up for the short session at dawn. I had a route worked out on MapMyRun from a few years back that takes in a bit of the woods (approx. 4km) and then rises and falls along two rural roads before climbing back up to the entrance of the woods (1km from the foot of the hill). It starts and ends with long climbs, and in total lasts about 13.19km.
    I thought I'd manage it in 70 minutes but eventually got back to the car after 1:16:50. I made a couple of mistakes. Wearing an under-armour top under my running t-shirt was a disaster. I over-heated after the first 3k. I also forgot to put on vaseline so my chest got sore towards the end. I also under-estimated the effect of the earlier jog.
    I'll run this again on Sunday and try to get my average pace back down again.

    Thursday 23rd November

    Run Rise - To make up for the wrong turn the last day, one of the lads insisted that we do 10km today. The only problem with our group is that we operate on a principle of sticking to the pace of the slowest runner, so it took us about 1:09:45 to complete the route. It was a beautiful morning to get out and around the river banks in Limerick, and we didn't mind walking to enjoy the views every now and again, but I would have been happier (and under less pressure!) if we'd done it 10 minutes quicker.

  • It's great to get out in group runs. It makes it easier to get out the door, especially in winter. Don't worry too much about pace, a few easy runs won't do any harm and you can concentrate on things like correct form etc.

  • No parkrun this week due to the weather. No harm! It was nice to have a lie-in on a Saturday morning. :)

    Ran the 8 mile route around Cratloe again today. 1:16:30 on the clock, 13.25km on the map. Started stronger than the last day, but couldn't keep up the pace I was hoping for.

    Great to get the miles in the legs, but I think I need to get back into speed work again during the week.

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  • Tuesday 28th November

    Run Rise. Got there late. Saw the lads take off around the corner. Had to charge after them to catch up. Still took 2.25 km before they realised I was behind them. :pac: I ran out of steam after 3.5 km but the lads stopped to let me catch up. It was very stop-start after that, going up the main street in town and stopping at pedestrian crossings, but we did 5.2km in 29 minutes in the end. I was still very tired from the 13.25k on Sunday. Probably should have skipped Tuesday altogether, because I didn't train again for the rest of the week. Volunteered as a time-keeper at parkrun on Saturday morning too.

    Monday 4th December

    Back into speed work this week. Started with a slow lap to get going, then did my dynamic stretches and mobility stuff (cariocas, Basil Fawlty walks, supine "scorpions", reverse lunges, leg swings, walking lunges with twists w. 5kg medicine ball) to complete the warm-up.

    I then repeated the "Surges" workout from a few weeks ago, but with updated targets:

    - 5 minute warm-up jog at 7:20 per km.
    - 30 seconds @4:40/km pace, 2 minutes @5:50/km (x8)
    - 5 minute cool-down jog at 7:20 per km.

    I ran the warm-up at 6:15 pace and the cool-down at 6:09 pace, so was way ahead of those targets.
    I ran all of the surges between 4:00 and 4:06, apart from the last one which was 4:16. All way ahead of target.
    I missed my 5:50 target on three sets, 6:06, 5:57, 5:53, but in the end it balanced out as a Success.

    Total time: 30:30. Total distance: 5.5km. I kept jogging after after the work-out ended just to get the distance up to an even 5.5, then walked the last 400 metres around the track and finished with some more stretches (supine leg rotations, kneeling hip flexor stretches, quad stretches up onto tiptoes, Spidermans, supine hip rotations). Best balanced work-out I've done in a while. Must aim to maintain this for the next fortnight at least. Next work-out is Wednesday, a Short Fartlek session.

    Hoping to do a slow run tomorrow morning too, just to burn off a few calories. :)

  • Wednesday 6th December

    I was in bits after Monday's session so I stayed in bed instead of doing the early morning run on Tuesday.

    Training today was the Pace Academy Short Fartlek workout.

    I started with the same warm-up as I did on Monday. I timed it this time. 5 minutes jogging, 10 minutes on dynamic stretches.

    The structure of the session was as follows:

    Interval | Target Pace | Actual Pace
    5:00 | 7:20/km | 6:17/km
    5:00 | 5:50/km | 5:02/km
    1:00 | 4:40/km | 4:19/km
    1:00 | 7:00/km | 7:30/km
    1:00 | 4:40/km | 4:05/km
    1:00 | 7:00/km | 7:30/km
    2:00 | 4:40/km | 4:36/km
    2:00 | 7:00/km | 7:06/km
    1:00 | 4:40/km | 4:20/km
    1:00 | 7:00/km | 8:08/km
    1:00 | 4:40/km | 4:21/km
    1:00 | 7:00/km | 7:36/km
    2:00 | 4:40/km | 4:53/km
    6:00 | 7:20/km | 6:26/km

    I kept a tab of instructions open this time in case the app didn't give me accurate updates. That seemed to help as I was also able to keep an eye on my current pace.

    Once again I was way ahead of pace on the warm-up and cool-down, as well as the 5 minute "steady" section, so I can be very happy with those 16 minutes.
    On the fast sections I was ahead of target for all but the last long one. I just didn't have the strength left in my legs for it.
    That much should be evident from how slow I was on each of the "recovery" sections! :o

    It was a great session anyway, and I managed to jog around for a total of 5.51km in 31:15. I did my cool-down again at the end. Turns out I'd been doing the Kneeling Hip-Flexor Stretch incorrectly this whole time! :eek: I watched a video on YouTube and made some improvements to that stretch, and also added in a few bridges. Wrecked altogether between this one and Monday, but should still be up for the next challenge on Friday and a handy parkrun on Saturday morning.

  • Thursday 7th December

    Early morning jog. 5.4km, 36 minutes. Fastest: 5:58/km. Slowest: 7:46/km. Beautiful morning for it. Went for coffee and chats afterwards. We haven't done that in a while. :)

    Indoor soccer in the evening for an hour. Played 5 against 6. I was on the team of 5 for the first half. Ran all over the court, worked up a great sweat. Very good fun, even if we did end up losing 11-9. :pac:

    Targets for Friday: Progression session. 10 minutes at 7:00/km, 10 minutes at 5:20/km, 10 minutes at 4:40/km, 5 minute walk. This one will hurt!

  • Friday 8th December

    First 10 minutes: Target: 7:00/km. Actual Pace: 6:34
    Next 10 minutes: Target: 5:20/km. Actual Pace: 5:18
    Last 10 minutes: Target: 4:40/km. Actual Pace: 4:56
    Cool-down 5 minutes: Target: 12:30/km. Actual Pace: 8:26

    I tried to stick to the target times instead of wasting energy, but still managed to get ahead of target in the first stage.
    I was slightly behind target for the 10-15 minute stage but brought the average pace back in line after that.
    I knew I didn't have the strength to hit 4:40 pace today, but I'm delighted with 4:56 after running Monday, Wednesday, Thursday and also playing soccer last night.

    I should definitely have it in the tank to do this properly on Monday if I take a rest day on Sunday. There's a good chance of parkrun getting cancelled if there's frost in the morning. Might go to the woods for 5 miles instead.

    I'm feeling stronger on my stretches and exercises too. Great to feel those getting comfortable and natural.

  • So, it turns out the flu is a total bastard. I went nearly three weeks without training there.

    To begin, a recap of how things went at the end of December:

    Tuesday 19th December
    Early morning jog. 5.2km. Very slow pace. Took us 40 minutes, with quite a bit of walking.

    Saturday 23rd December
    Parkrun. 26:16. Decent enough, but nowhere near my best.

    Monday 25th December
    Christmas morning parkrun. 26:00. Better!

    Tuesday 26th December
    Went for a jog with my uncle and another family friend. The original plan had been to do about 75 minutes at 5:30 pace but we settled for 9.7 km in the end. 58:20 on the clock. Just over 6 minutes per kilometre, but there was no sense in pushing too hard. I went out and played soccer for an hour on astro-turf afterwards and still felt strong for that too. Covered over 20km over the course of 4 days in the middle of the Christmas season.

    Wednesday 27th December
    Hike. Approximately 16.5 km. The one that was one too many! Picked up a bug from one of the others on the hike. Thought it was a chest infection at first, then a nasty sore throat, then the flu, then a sinus infection, then a heavy cold. All sorts of symptoms, and as soon as one cleared up another nasty one took its place. I missed out on 4 parkruns because of it, as well as a 5 mile run and a 10k run with one of the local Athletics Clubs. Not an ideal end to 2017 or start to 2018!

    But still, looking back, I went from 30:45 for 5km at the start of 2017 to managing a few sub-25:00 runs. Still able to hit 26:00 without much training before getting sick.
    I brought my 5 mile time down from 50:50 on New Year's Day to 43:12 in the woods/hills in November.
    I brought my 10k time down from 1:07:00 last Christmas to 51:58 in November.

    I should be able to get back to that pace by the end of January if I start training regularly again.

  • Monday 15th January 2018

    5 km run. Flat track. 27:45. Ran the first kilometre in 5 minutes and burnt myself out. Splits times: 4:57, 5:32, 5:46, 5:47, 5:41.

    Sprints: 6x100 metres with a rest in between to walk back to my starting point. Took about 10 minutes to do the set.

    I want to do the same workout again on Thursday and add in a few hill-sprints at the end as well.

    I need to get my body back to its best for a 5k run (the first in the 2018 Run Clare series) on Saturday the 27th. I ran it in 29:35 last year. Would love to knock 4 minutes off that this year, if I can't beat 25 minutes yet.

  • Thursday 18th January 2018

    5k run, flat track. 26:56 on the clock. Splits of 5:19, 5:19, 5:29, 5:27, 5:17.

    Went out steady and tried to keep it that way! Turns out there was a tree on the track, which I had to hurdle on every lap. I reckon that probably cost me somewhere between 10 and 16 seconds over all, but I'm happy to be back under 27 minutes anyway.

    I had intended to do some sprints again today but it just wouldn't have been worth it. I was in agony at GAA training last night from the effects of sprinting on Monday. I was also considering the Moby "Flower" challenge (Bring Sally Up, Bring Sally Down) with kettle-bell squats, but I reckon another good run tomorrow and parkrun on Saturday will be more beneficial at this stage. I'll break out the big guns again in February to prepare for the 5 mile run in Lahinch on the 18th.

  • Sunday 21st January

    GAA fitness test.

    1. Test: Acceleration over 10 metres and 20 metres. (x2)
    2. Test: deceleration, turn, acceleration. 5 metre sprint, turn, return. (x2)
    3. Test: standing jump off both legs. Repeat if balance not kept on landing. (x2)
    4: Shuttle runs. Cones placed at 5 metre intervals. 30 seconds to complete as much as possible. Very short rest. Six sets. (minimum target, apparently, should be a total of 720 metres out of a maximum 900 metres. I believe I managed about 635.)

    Test to be repeated in six weeks after more training.

    Monday 22nd January

    5 mile run in the woods. First time running that route in nearly 11 weeks. Finished it in 45:37 without pausing in the middle. Average speed was 17 seconds per kilometre slower than my PB out there, but that was to be expected! We didn't do a huge amount of work yesterday but I could still feel the effects of the sprints and shuttle runs in my muscles over the first climb.

    Kilometre splits: 5:18, 6:18, 5:48, 5:08, 6:07, 6:00, 5:12, 5:32. I'll jog it again tomorrow just to get miles in the legs.

  • Tuesday 23rd January

    5 mile run in the woods. Second attempt in 24 hours. I allowed myself a two minute break at the half-way mark so I could catch my breath and take a drink. Got back under the 45:00 minute mark. Not sure if I could have done that without the breather!

    Average speed was 11 seconds per kilometre slower than my PB, but still an improvement on yesterday. Total time: 44:45. Half-way: 22:20.

    Kilometre splits: 5:27, 6:00, 5:45, 5:04, 6:02, 5:47, 5:08, 5:32.

  • Might as well log some of the GAA training here as well. We had a tough session last night, but with lots of basic skills work in between each hard drill. Great balance between hard running and passing and moving. Always great to have managers/coaches who gets the balance right there.

    We had our regular warm-up with the ball, basic handling and hand-passing drills, some simple mobility exercises to get the body ready, and a few sets of press-ups.
    60 seconds of running and hand-passing between 2 other players, a break, then 60 seconds of running, hand-passing, rising the ball.
    A timed 1.5km run (15x100 metres) on fairly heavy ground.
    Shuttle runs with "hurdles" (jumping over a kneeling team-mate 10 times, then sprinting and turning at 5 metres, 10 metres, 15 metres), repeat with 8, 6, 4, and 2 jumps.
    Finished with a longer shuttle run. 10 metre intervals between cones.

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  • Do you mind me commenting you seem to 'racing' every run you do? Maybe i am wrong but there is a lot of mention of beating previous times and getting close to PBs on training runs. The general advice i've gleaned around here is to save 'racing' for races and run slower consistently to get faster. I'm not the best person to explain the science of it but running slower consistently you are training your 'energy systems' to be more efficient and stronger which in turn will enable you to go faster. Or something along those lines - there's lots more informed people than me here who could explain it better :o

    Lots of articles will back this up also such as this and this

  • ariana` wrote: »
    Do you mind me commenting you seem to 'racing' every run you do? Maybe i am wrong but there is a lot of mention of beating previous times and getting close to PBs on training runs. The general advice i've gleaned around here is to save 'racing' for races and run slower consistently to get faster. I'm not the best person to explain the science of it but running slower consistently you are training your 'energy systems' to be more efficient and stronger which in turn will enable you to go faster. Or something along those lines - there's lots more informed people than me here who could explain it better :o

    Lots of articles will back this up also such as this and this

    I think a big part of why I keep aiming to beat previous times on training runs is because I know I was much faster only a few years ago. I'm making improvements all the time but I'm still not back to my peak. The other thing to keep in mind is that I'm still more of a footballer than a runner (despite not playing much over the last 4 years or so!)

    I have three big goals for this year. 1) I want to massively improve on my times for the Run Clare series compared to last year. 2) I want to run the Great Limerick half marathon in under 1:55:00. 3) I want to be the first choice goalkeeper for my club's Senior Football team. The last time I played a Championship match was when we won the Junior Final in 2006. I was never given a chance to play in 7 years of Intermediate Football so I packed in in for a while, but I was quite fit from the training and I know it'll be another step up to get ready for Senior.

    I cut over four and a half minutes off my parkrun times between the start of September and the middle of November, which I was delighted about. I would have knocked more time off it again if I hadn't had a cold in December and the flu after New Years.

    The next 6 weeks are going to be very intense for pre-season training. I'm going to have to be sensible about my own training runs while we're working so hard on anaerobic stuff with the club. I was lucky this week that I could get away with some very tough runs on Monday and Tuesday. I won't be able to do that every week.

    I want to break 26:00 in a 5k race this weekend, and I felt I needed a quick fix to get ready for that after missing out on three weeks worth of running after Christmas. The next race is 5 miles, and there's a 3 week gap in between. I want to run that in 42:00 minutes this year. Those should set the foundation for the 10k in March and the 10 miles in April, so slow and steady runs will be fine again soon.

    TL; DR: I set myself very reasonable targets and I want to hit them quickly. I'll revise my training again when I change those targets again. For example, I should be able to set my sights on 24 minutes for 5k soon, but need to get back towards 25 minutes first. I also plan to join a running club and start treating the sport properly next September, but GAA comes first for a while.

  • I'd say the fact you are in heavy preseason training is even more reason to ease off the paces on your runs. The times will come anyway. Best of luck in your county championship. I love the optimism that ye'll still be in it until September!

  • Barefield 5k - race #1 in the Run Clare series 2018

    26:15 on my watch. Somewhere around 27:30 on the race clock (starting at the very back of the field). Runkeeper measured the course as 5.07 km. I'm assuming I accumulated the extra 70 metres going back and forth across the road to overtake other runners.

    Very hilly for a New Year 5k. There was a 500 metre climb at the start and maybe 400 metres up hill to the finish line too, with a nasty hill after the 3k point as well. I was banking on a fast finish to break 26 minutes but it was impossible with that incline.

    Splits: 5:00, 5:15, 5:14, 5:11, 5:14.

    I'm quite happy with it over all. I was a full 00:03:20 faster than this time last year. Felt fantastic over the first 15 minutes. I over heated a little at that stage. Should have drank more water while I was waiting for the race to start. It was delayed for 25 minutes because of hold-ups at the registration desks. I'll learn for next time and invest in a small sports bottle! :)

  • Recovery/Training run.

    8k in the woods, slow and steady. 48:30. No break in the middle. Started nice and slow and told myself to enjoy the run. :pac: It was still painful, but it's more miles in the legs. Made it back to my car just before the last of the daylight ran out. Might do it again a bit earlier tomorrow if work allows for it. I'm taking Tuesday as a rest day this week.

  • 5 mile training run in the woods again today. Split it into two sections of 4km with a water-break at the half-way mark. 22:48 up, 22:06 back down.

    I went back to my warm-up with dynamic stretching and hip mobility exercises for the first time in a while and it does seem to have made a difference. I was in a bit of discomfort last night after the run yesterday and even debated taking it easy today but once I got going I felt much better. My quads were a little tired from the last few days and from the lunges but I still managed to hit my target of 1.6 km in the first 10 minutes.

    The biggest difference I felt from yesterday was in the last 2k. I really opened up and kicked on over that stretch today in a way that I haven't felt strong enough to do in a while. Finished inside 45 minutes and did my cool-down exercises with a yoga mat that I'd left in the boot of the car.

    Tried to do the squats challenge on Moby's song "Flower" (Bring Sally up, Bring Sally down) but only got half way into the song before I had to give up. It was still a great workout. Tomorrow will have to be a rest day with GAA training scheduled for Wednesday night.

  • Made a silly mistake on Tuesday and attempted the squats challenge. I didn't do it perfectly (delayed a few seconds on some of the squats towards the end) and I'm sure my form could have been better (I went very deep a few times to save my quads from burning, a.k.a. I cheated) but I kept going for the full duration of the song.

    I also dug out my old skipping rope and tried to figure out how to use that. My rhythm is way off. It was grand for a 10 minute quick work-out anyway. The trouble was trying to move today. I was challenging muscles in different ways and testing ones that I've barely activated at all since last summer. Too much too soon, I think.

    It made for some slow running at GAA training tonight. We've been set a few targets in terms of distances/times for various activities, based off Inter-County standard fitness training.

    We should be able to do 3 laps of the pitch (about 1.2 km) in 5:00. I managed 6:37 tonight.

    We should be doing 15x100 metres in 6:30. I managed that in 8:17 last week.

    We have to finish out our shuttle runs in 60 seconds. I think the total distance is 210 metres but I'm not totally sure. I've only been managing 60% of the distance in that length of time anyway.

    I'll treat Thursday as a proper rest day and see if I'm feeling stronger/faster for Friday night's session. It's brutally clear now that I'm going to have to cut back on my own individual training soon. Might get away with it for one more week, just to be sure I'm feeling mentally prepared for a proper attack on the 5 mile race in Lahinch on the 18th.

  • First parkrun of the year this morning. 26:00 by my watch. Will probably get the text/email time in a few hours. Massive numbers out to celebrate the Limerick parkrun's second birthday. David Gillick did a short warm-up with the crowd and Ian Dowling was doing cool-downs and stretches/massage ball techniques/physio at the end. Lovely buzz around UL for the whole thing.

    I only got home from GAA training at 21:30 last night so it was strange getting my running gear on only 12 hours later. Started strong. Did the first km in 5 minutes and then started to ease off again. Had 4.75 km done after 25:00 and powered through the last minute to hit 26:00 overall.

    It turns out the shuttle runs we've been doing for football training are over 10 yard intervals. Total distance of 420 yards/384 metres. Considerably longer than the 210 metres I estimated in my last post! :eek: I ended up doing 3 full ones last night. Managed to break 70 seconds for the first two, 75 seconds for the third. The target is still to do them in 60 seconds, three times in a row, by this time next month.

    I'd love to try them fresh and see if I could manage it, because trying to do them after the warm-ups, burpees, jumps, and ball drills is a killer.

  • Did an hour of shot-stopping and goal-kick practice last Sunday afternoon after playing a local soccer match in the morning. Probably a bit much for one day. My right quad was still very tight on Wednesday. Turns out I just really needed to start stretching again! :pac:

    Wednesday night was the usual fare for GAA training. Lots of drills with the ball. The warm-up included 30 press-ups, done in pairs, in which we had to high-five each other on each press-up. Similarly, we did a drill involving press-ups with a ball that we had to roll from one hand to the other (15 times). In pairs, jumping over a kneeling partner 30 times. We did the shuttle-runs 3 times with roughly 90 seconds for recovery between runs. I've also started doing some goalkeeper-specific drills involving reactions, diving, getting back up quickly, shuffling with fast feet, high catches, moving backwards and forwards, stopping shots, jumping squats, etc.

    I did a solo session for an hour on Thursday. 1 lap of the pitch (~430 metres) and mobility/dynamic stretches for the warm-up. 3 laps of the pitch (~1.34km) in 06:09. 15x100 metres (running around tyres at each end) in 07:22. 1 shuttle run (10, 20, 30, 40, 50, 60 yards) in the mud in 01:35. 3x10 box jumps on the garden wall (measured 29 inches :eek: ). Lots of long static stretches. Great work-out, but I'm still way off the targets of 05:00, 06:30, and 01:00 (but I reckon the coach has been exaggerating the distance on the shuttle run!)

    Friday: usual warm-up, no press-ups, no jumps. Only 2 shuttles. Some tough enough goalie drills, but they're starting to feel easier already. :) Loads of kicking practice from distance. Lots of stretching afterwards. Looking forward to parkrun in the morning.

    Edited to add: aside from recognising which parts of my body need more stretching, I'm also figuring out how much more attention I need to pay to proper hydration. I had a lot more water during the afternoon today and it really seemed to help. Always learning. :)

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  • Saturday 10th of February

    Limerick parkrun. 25:55. Decided to go strong and steady and just see how I'd get on. It worked out nicely! Slowest km was #4 (5:26) and fastest was #5 (5:02).

    I got home then and saw a Facebook notification about a post I'd shared this day in 2013....
    7.7km in 38:16. Less than 04:58 per km. Woohoo!

    I'd love to get back to that level. I think I was under 13 stone at that stage though, and cycling to and from work most days. Might get closer to it as the weight keeps dropping. I'm back under the 14 stone mark now anyway.