Saturday, December 31, 2011

24km out an back monaco

I felt very tired before heading out - due to the new puppy keeping me up most of the night. Shane made me a double shot sweet coffee and that helped.

The rain had stopped and the water resided. There was a new big slip up on the walkway but other than that it was all clear. Once I started I actually felt ok and struck out at a pace I felt ok at. I was going to take a gel at 8km and 16km but when I got to 8km I thought I could see my mate up ahead and so I pushed on a little quicker for a km or two to try and catch her.....but it turned out it wasnt her and so I stopped at 12km and had my first gel and a stretch.

It was still over cast and there were the odd few drops of rain...but nothing to major. I pushed for home and was still feeling quite strong and ok. I am pleased to say that I had NO pains anywhere!!! I stopped again at 19km and took a second gel and some water. Then it was just 5km to home. I headed back up Beatsons Road and down the track to home. Hit stop and checked my watch. Wow.....I didnt intend to be quick today and it didnt feel like I had been.

total time 2:26:38 avg pace 6:07 avg heart rate 141

24km out an back monaco

Thursday, December 29, 2011

10km fartlek in the rain

Nelson is under a heavy rain warning again. Its raining now but its meant to be torrential tomorrow. So it really left me no option but to do the 10km fartlek now. I was not sure how this would go as my legs and glutes were pretty fatigued and sore plus my right hamstring had knotted up again.

I didnt bother with a jacket, just put a long sleeve on. Once're wet. I walked around and unlocked the track and did a couple of laps to warm up. Then I just got into it. My first km I was feeling ok. My glutes were working but not hurting at this stage. I started in on the second fast section and felt that familiar sharp pain in my lower hamstring mid hamstring. It didnt ease up on the recovery 500 so I had to stop and stretch. By now I was soaked through, my shoes felt like big weights on my feet. I started up again, but each time I tried to power on the pain got worse and I just didnt have any power. I was working hard but yet my heart rate says I wasnt. I was breathing hard and coughing from the effort. I had to stop again at the 6km mark to stretch my right leg, but now my glute meds on both sides were burning and fatiguing. I thought to stop at the 8km mark as the pain in my hamstring was starting to get worse but I knew i had to get this workout done.

It was here that I suddenly realised what a whinging whinning snot I had turned into. Ok yes my leg hurt but I could still walk, yes it was wet but I was not cold and I was going to finish this walk if I had to drag my leg around behind me!

I was thinking that I had not done a very good job on this walk and feeling a little despondent I decided to check my data from past 10km fartleks and was surprised to see that I was only 8 secs of my fastest 10km fartlek.

1 - 5:14
2 - 2:58 + 2:39 = 5 :37
3 - 2:59 + 2:40 = 5:39
4 - 3:02 + 2:41 = 5:43
5 - 3:06 + 2:45 = 5:51
6 - 3:05 + 2:44 = 5:49
7 - 2:59 + 2:46 = 5:45
8 - 3:02 + 2:47 = 5:49
9 - 3:07 + 2:50 = 5:57 (Hamstring cramped)
10-3:04 + 2:47 = 5:51

total time 57:19

10km fartlek in the rain

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

15km (2 x 6min burst)

My left glute was really sore. In fact has been sore for a few days, I am not really sure what I have done to have caused it. I do know that driving really made it hurt and it was very sore again last night after my poor attempt at the track.

I was to do 2 x 6min burst of race pace. I managed a couple of attempts at kms 3 & 4 and again at 11km but the head wind on the way home made it pretty hard to get any speed going. It was hot again with high cloud. I was very thankful when the cloud cover finally rolled in towards the end of my walk. But it was still 25degs out there. We are on a heavy rain warning again for the next 4 days. UGH!

My glutes ached the whole time out. For a good part it was my left glute but after 10km my right one started to ache as it was reaching fatigue. It felt like the deep ache you get when having acupuncture.

Total time 1:32:10 avg pace 6:09 avg heart rate 142

15km (2 x 6min burst)

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

5 x 2km at track - Fail!

Of all my workouts ... this one I find to be the hardest. It intimidates me so badly.

I was meant to do this workout yesterday, but we were over in Blenheim seeing family for Christmas. We knew we would be home later in the day and I have every intention of doing this once we got home. But we ended up staying much longer and doing many little odd jobs around the family house. I was also driving and had found that my left glute Med was REALLY sore while sitting for that long. I was also very naughty and eat a whole box of White chocolate scorched almonds...........yep a WHOLE box.......

So I knew I had to do this walk today. It is a really hot hot day again so I figured that if I went at 4pm it might cool down and that rain we are expecting will come. It didn't, I was falling asleep in the lounge during the afternoon and realised that I needed to wake up so I could go and walk. I was so tired, really drained tried. I guess all the driving over the last two days and late nights and BAD eating......had caught up with me. I met up with Sharon and Raylene at the track. While there lots of the kids who will be entering Collgate Games turned up to practice so it was a very busy wee field.

I started out and after the first km knew I was going to really struggle and sure enough, I just got slower and slower and slower. Many times I thought to just quit. I felt I was wasting my coaches time doing this workout so slowly. I know he was expecting me to push and try to do these 2km segments quickly. I was trying to ...but I had NOTHING ... my legs were dead. I was not breathing hard and my heart rate was relatively low .... this just made me even more despondent....WHY was I feeling so slow. I could only put it down to poor eating in the last couple of days.

I wont put the km splits up....they can be seen in the link below if you are curious. I had 2 minute rests between each set. But the whole work out was ugly the only positive thing I can say is that I finished it and my body held together.

5 x 2km at track

Saturday, December 24, 2011

24 km out an back monaco

I was so scared about this walk. I had decided to tackle this one later in the day ..seeing as hobart was going to be raced at 6pm I may as well get used to doing long distance at that time now. The day was getting hotter and hotter, at 4.00 I looked out and saw it was starting to cloud over to picked to go at then.

I started out along the track, keeping a easy pace. I got to the first km and realised I had left my glasses at home. Oh well at least I put a hat on. By the 5km mark the sun was beating down on me and I was very thankful to my water belt and hat. I stopped at 12km to take a bird bath under a tap and to have my gel. I was feeling pretty good, a few runners were out and so I followed a couple of them...then they slowly pulled away from me. At 16km I felt a sharp pull at my inside right knee....the base of my hamstring! I carried on but paid close attention to it. It just felt like a bruise after that. The good thing...NO hip pain ... and only a couple of twinges in the back of my hamstring.

20km came and went. I was starting to feel tired, my legs were like jelly and my glutes were really starting to hurt. Now it was only 4km to go. I was starting to feel it was getting tough, then I thought of tammy and erin....this was only their half way distance. So I got on with it and headed back up Beatson Road.

I hit the stop button and was very relieved that it was over. I felt I had picked a pace that I could comfortably do. I didnt feel I was pushing at any time. But my knee was VERY sore when I stopped and just walked normally. so home for a shower and some ice...but I will lay on the floor for a while rather than sit down.

Total time for the walk is 2:28:59 avg pace 6:12

24 km out an back monaco

Friday, December 23, 2011

5km fartlek atawahi

Coach asked if I could do a 5km fartlek today. I really didnt want to as I felt I needed the day to lax and get my head into the 24km tomorrow. But as I had missed a speed work out I knew he would not have asked if I didnt need to to do it.

As I had planned most of today I had to figure out when I could fit it in. The track is used in the afternoon and evenings so I opted to head out to the Atahwai Walkway.

My hip flexors felt tight as I started out and I was worried if I was going to pull them and be really sore for tomorrow. I didnt feel that I was very fast at all, in fact the opposite.

I made it through the whole work out and made sure I pushed for each 500m.

1 - 2:36 + 2:42 = 5:19
2 - 3:00 + 2.35 = 5:36
3 - 2:55 + 2:35 = 5:30
4 - 2:58 + 2:32 = 5:30
5 - 3:02 + 2:35 = 5:37

total time 27:33

5km fartlek atawahi

Now to rest up for the 24km tomorrow. Probably head out and do that later in the day as we have planned some shopping at the Saturday Flea Market....last min Xmas shopping :)

Thursday, December 22, 2011

10km kickdown fail

10km kickdown at the track turned into an epic fail.

I have learned to NEVER EVER eat a punnet of strawberries the night before any kind of walk. I started to feel off colour at work about an hour before heading to the track. I had a terrible stomach ache and a throbbing headache. It didnt take long for the GI issues to start.

I went down to the track and I had aimed to try for the following - 5:50, 5:45, 5:40 & 5:35

I started out and easily slipped into 5:50 pace. My left adductor was hurting alot (I had felt it start to hurt during the end of my 15km the day before) I figured that it would eventually warm up and settle. At the 2.5km I picked it up a little. By 4km my stomach was lurching and cramping. I was not feeling very well at all. I felt able to push on but I was not finding it as easy anymore. 5km and my GI issues were becoming more intense. I tried to increase my pace but there was nothing there. I broke out in a cold sweat and could feel that I was on the verge of throwing up. I got through 6km and thought I would be able to continue but soon after I crossed the 6km mark I felt my stomach lurch and then I had to stop. Enough said.

data below for what it is worth.

10km kickdown fail

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

15km out an back monaco

I decided to do this later in the day. We had some shopping to do earlier and I really wanted to eat some lunch. But by the time it came to head out I was feeling very tired and listless. I really didnt want to go out.

So I munched on the last of my Sports Beans and then just got started.

Easy pace and forget about the time!!! By 5km I was feeling pretty flat. I wasnt breathing hard so I figured I must be taking it fairly easy and was surprised to see I was under 30mins for 5km. I carried on to the 7.5km mark where I stopped briefly to eat some more sports beans and to stretch out my hamstring. My right hamstring was aching a little.

I came up Beatson Road and had to pick my path carefully...all the mud from the slips has set into lumps and bumps so it was not nice for walking on.

I zipped along the last km on the walkway and was pleased to have made it home. The walk itself turned out to be an ok time, I was just very tired and very flat. Not looking forward to the 10km kick down tomorrow. Will have to ride my bike to work again so will have to bike out to the track. I guess that will warm my legs up before I get there.

1:32:07 avg pace 6:09 avg heart rate 145

15km out an back monaco - Details

Monday, December 19, 2011

5 x 2km at track

5 x 2km (3mins recovery between sets)

Sounds easy enough! Its NOT! Its daunting to say the least. These are the hard sessions that we all love to hate. But you feel so GREAT once its done.

I decided to mentally tackle this one in a different way. I just did 2km at a time....5 laps! and I would count them down as I went. It did seem to trick myself into thinking it was easier. I wore my nike shoes....I won these and never wore them - as they are so light they have NO support. But as my training shoes are starting to age and are no longer really any good, I dug these out. After 10km...they will get tucked away again. The insides of my ankles are aching from rolling inwards.

The walk its self went well. I think I fired out too fast for my first 2km but you are supposed to push on these so I will take it. Things did slow after this though. I was breathing pretty hard for the first half and then after that my legs were dying and my lungs were settling. Twice I wanted to quit and I had to tell myself off to keep at it.

I think coach will be ok with it. No pains anywhere while I walked so thats a good thing! My back was pretty sore before I started but it was more the muscle up the side of my back spasming than my disk. No feet pain now for over two weeks...just a funny nerve pain under my toes but that is lessoning.

splits are as follows:

5:20:2 + 5:19:6 = 10:39:8
5:19:7 + 5:28:6 = 10:48:3
5:27:3 + 5:30:8 = 10:58:1
5:27:9 + 5:33:6 = 11:01:5
5:26:2 + 5:31:2 = 10:57:4

all with 3mins rest between.

5 x 2km at track - Details

Saturday, December 17, 2011

8km @ 85% around stoke

Went out with Yvonne today and did 8km at 85% effort....ok probably felt more like 90% as we went along an undulating course and I tried to keep up the pace on the uphills. Its nice to have someone faster than you to help push you along too.

Yvonne piced a nice course and would be the perfect loop for training for the Buller Half Marathon. It was dry underfoot but you could see where creeks had burst over an flowed over the paths etc.

No pain in my knee and just a little niggle in the back of the hammy on the down hills.

time - 47:14 avg pace 5:54 and avg h/r 151

Friday, December 16, 2011

10km treadmill & video check

Due to the major flooding that has hit our region I have been unable to train out side.  Plus I had pulled my lower hamstring earlier in the week so was quite pleased for the added break.

I couldn't put off this work-out any longer so the only option was to use the treadmill.  While I was on the treadmill my hubby videoed me for my coach to see.  I was more nervous than ever as I know the treadmill can alter your style and I was worried Jim would find fault.  I am thrilled to say that he said I looked good.  Everything was in line and I looked strong.  yay!!!  high praise coming from him.

I had just set the treadmill to 10km (6 min/km) so the walk took me 1:00:08 with avg heart rate of 148

My shins hurt a lot for the first 3km and then settled in.  My hamstring niggled a little around the 4km mark but quickly settled.

Video was taken at 3 km mark

10km treadmil

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

5km fartlek

Physio this morning and it went really well. I have had no pain in my feet for over a week now...yay....and just one day with bad lower back pain. So it is improving....slowly. The only odd thing I have felt is an odd sensation on my right foot ...all my toes feel like they have cramped and turned under. When I walk it feels like the toes have curled under a little and its really annoying. Bex has advanced me on my pilate exercises and I am keen to get stuck into them and get things moving on my back.

Today I had a 5km fartlek and seeing as the last couple of weeks the track has been in use, I decided to go and do this around atawahi again. Not the fastest course as its a little up and down...very minimal and its got nice scenery to keep me interested. Before I even left the house I mentioned to my hubby that I was having some shocking tummy aches....pockets of air get caught up inside and twists etc....hurts like hell. Hmm not the greatest thing to have when you are about to go and push hard for a speed workout.

I drove down to the walkway and started out. I felt a little sluggish and my foot was really annoying me. I didnt feel I could get a good push off from my stride. But on a positive note...I had NO pain in my legs or ankle or back! GREAT STUFF!!! I pulled up for my first 500m recovery and was breathing hard and coughing. My watch beeped to say time to pick it up again and I did....I got about 200m into and I had a sharp pain hit me in my ribcage on the right side. Was it stitch? it didnt feel like a stitch as thats felt lower. I pushed through the pain and finished my fast 500m and used the next slow one to try and figure out what I was feeling. It eased off a little but as soon as I pushed on the next fast segment, it came straight back and it HURT LOTS. I couldnt even grip it in my hands as it right in under the rib cage. I figured it had to be all connected to the gassy pains I had earlier and just pushed through it.

One more fast segment to go and I was done....thank goodness! Even though it was only 5km today you tend (well I do) to push harder on the shorter distances and I was pretty much done for. The pain in my right side was slowly going and I managed to finish with out too much more discomfort.

I had hoped for a faster time and was a little disappointed at myself but I needed the longer recovery's due to the pain.

Total time = 27:51 avg heart rate 150 max heart rate 170

see data link below for splits.

5km fartlek

EDITED:  well after the walk, I sat down and chatted to my coach for about two hours......went to stand up and found I couldnt bend my knee...... physically couldnt lift the leg to bend the right knee.  oooooooohhhhhh no!!!  I had the womens activtor series to go to for mountain biking....thought I would be ok...but couldn't get on my bike well and the movement of the peddles really hurt as my knee bent.
Home with ice pack and now strapping.............grrrrrrr  all probably due to my foot/toes and my knee drifting during the walk.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

20km out and back monaco

What a fantastic walk!!!!

My friend Yvonne was going to come with me today and jog beside me. She had 17km on her program so the idea was that she would turn off near her place after 15km and carry on for her 17 and I continue home. I was worried I would be a little slow for her as last week I was only walking at 6:20 pace and had aimed to do the same again today.

I was a little worried that my slow 10km yesterday would leave me feeling a little tired but when I woke this morning I felt great. I decided to plan a little better for this walk. So I had a strong sweet cup of coffee about an hour before our walk. I got out my beeswax massage gel and gave my calf's and hamstring a really good massage. I filled up my water bottles and put recovery drink in one and water in the other.

Yvonne arrived at 9am and we started out. We headed up the walkway and out to Monaco. We were chatting away happily, not paying too much attention to our speed. Pretty much both of us figured if we can comfortably chat and not be puffing we were doing a nice easy pace. We were both really surprised to hit 5km in 29:55 it didnt feel like we were putting that much effort into it. We carried on as we were and hit the 10km mark in 1:00:54 and we stopped briefly to munch on a goo chew and to take a good drink. Again we both were feeling good. I didn't feel tired, my legs still felt strong and fresh. We came back still at the same one point both of us were chatting away so much we suddenly noticed we had sped up and we chuckled at that. Yvonne turned off at about the 15.5km mark and I carried on for home. I was pretty sure that once we parted my pace would drop but surprisingly it didnt and I stayed just as strong up to the 17km mark when it starts to head into the up hill section.

I had NO pain for the whole walk. I am convinced that by having Yvonne beside me and chatting that I was not worrying about my style .... and just letting my body walk as it should.

I finished my walk in 2:01:57 and I felt GREAT! avg heart rate 146

the good news is that Yvonne is keen to come with me each Saturday for my long walks. Yay.

20km out and back monaco

Friday, December 09, 2011

10km easy monaco

As I have 20km to do tomorrow I was to take it easy on my 10km today. Plus my hamstring has pulled tight again and I didnt want to push it.

So easy it was....slow and steady. Hamstring pulled from time to time and it didn't make too much difference even with adjusting my body position.

But it was nice to gently swing along at a nice easy pace and enjoy the walk. Something that I very much need to start doing again.

1:02:06 avg pace of 6:13 and a nice low heart rate of avg 142

10km easy monaco

Thursday, December 08, 2011

10km Fartlek - atawhai

What a day!

I had a call back for a job interview ...MOST training got bumped back. Then I realised that I needed to eat as it had been 10 hours since got bumped back til 7pm. As its been a really hot day this was a great time to train...but sadly the wind had picked up and was going to make doing a fartlek a little tricky.

I had already decided to take it easy tonight and not push myself too hard as I dont want to upset healing little niggles.

As soon as I started out my ankle stiffened and was annoying me...not enough to say OUCH...just annoyed me. Then the bottom of my hamstring (at base of knee on inside of leg) started hurting. This has been hurting for the last 4 days. Not really sure what I did to it. Again it was not enough to make me stop but it was enough to cause me to just pull back a little.

The 5km out was into a head wind the 5km back was with a very gentle to zero tail wind as the wind abated by the time I turned.

Total time 58:10 avg heart rate was 155 max shows I was working fairly hard when it was needed.

1 - 2:49+2:52 = 5:41
2 - 3:09+2:45 = 5:54
3 - 2:58+2:53 = 5:51
4 - 3:01+2:54 = 5:55
5 - 3:02+2:48 = 5:50
6 - 3:11+2:45 = 5:56
7 - 2:56+2:43 = 5;39
8 - 2:58+2:45 = 5:43
9 - 2:59+2:44 = 5:43
10-3:01+2:45 = 5:46

Nelson Sportsperson of the Year Awards

I had been nominated by Athletics Nelson for the Masters Section of the Nelson Sportsperson of the Year Awards.

I was excited to have been nominated and even more so to come back from my holiday in Cairns to find that I was a Finalist.  Wow, I get to dress up in some FORMAL clothes for a change.  First panic for me was when I reached into the wardrobe to try on my beautiful long silk dress that had been made for me in Phuket to find it fitted where it touched................hmmmm ... gosh I had lost over a stone since this was made and it just hung on me. So it was a hasty whipping out of the sewing machine and a test to my seamstress skills to see if I could take it in and make it wearable.  Glad to say that after much swearing and stabbing self with pins...I pulled it off.

Me, just as we left home to head to the awards...all excited.

Sarah Ulmer was to be the guest speaker.  I can still remember watching her race live and seeing her take the podium to win Gold at the Olympics....I still get a lump in throat even now when thinking of it.  She was just such a genuine down to earth person and so humbled by it all.  Plus she was awesome to listen to and the stories she told of what actually goes on back stage after you win an event of that calibre was eye opening to say the very least.

As the evening progressed and we munched on some lovely wines and terrific foods the time came for the Masters division to be awarded.  We had all been videoed a month earlier and I suddenly was so scared I would make a totally idiot of myself as I really couldn't remember what I had said to the questions and after listening to many of the other athletes speak, I realised I had missed out so much!  Turns out I had nothing to worry about and I came across as very "articulate" as told later in the evening.  The lady presenting the award on behalf of Printhouse opened the envelope and called out my name.
This is my award and the pamphlet in the back ground was on each table.

I was actually stunned...I honestly had not expected to win this.  Oh gosh everyone else had given a wee speech  what on earth was I going to say.  I stumbled out of my chair.....gathered my composure and carefully made my way up on to the stage.  I turned to face the crowd and my mind went BLANK......  I stood there for a moment and here is what I said.........." Wow....this is so cool! " ....small nervous laugh.....  well...I would like to thank my sponsors and my coach - as with out them backing me ... none of my amazing year would have happened.  But most of all I need to thank my husband.  For all his support and patience as he has been the one left at home while I travelled and was out walking the streets .....................................  and then I quickly left the stage.  Well the place erupted with laughter.   It was not until I got out the back that I realised what I had actually said/implied in my nervousness............. oh well it sure caused a giggle.  But what I didn't know (cause I was getting photos taken etc) was that the compare of the evening was so taken by what I had said that he had asked that the husband of such a stunning walker to stand up and get a round of applause.  Poor Shane, had to stand up and wait while everyone clapped and cheered.  Really sweet actually but did embarrass him a little.

It was a wonderful night and now I have an awesome award to put on my shelf!  How very cool to have won the Masters Sports Person of the Year.

Official photo of me with my award after the event.

Monday, December 05, 2011

15km out and back windy

I have not recovered from my 20km! I hurt.....not just sore muscles but actually hurt. It not a good omen when you are suffering awful stomach pains before you head out. For about 5km my ankle hurt...alot. In fact I was going to turn back at the 5km mark and just call it quits but by the time I made the 5km point it didnt seem to be hurting any more. I couldn't control the pain in my hamstring today and it hurt for most of the walk. In fact towards the end I was struggling to maintain a legal walk as I had trouble landing on a straight leg due to the pain in my hamstring.

I just couldn't get into my swing today. I was wearing the new hydration belt and it changed my posture until I adjusted to it. I know its ok for me to be slow on my longer walks but I still struggle accepting it. I feel like I am wasting my coaches time.

yes it was a little windy today.....but only for a few kms.....7km back to 11km then it is the slow up hill back to home.

Time 1:35:08 avg pace 6:21 avg heart rate 141

I know that I am just starting back into my training and that the rebuild stage will take a little time..but .....I am not known for my patience. I have 70km to walk this week, with a tough speed session tomorrow.........time to put the big girl panties on and just suck it up. I wont get faster by sitting in the corner and sucking on my thumb. I just wish I had a magic wand that can fix what ever is wrong with my back.

15km out and back monaco windy

Saturday, December 03, 2011

20km easy pace

I slept in this morning. I mean really slept in...until 10am!! but my back was aching lots and I was feeling very tired. The weather was meant to be showers on and off so I decided I would head out at lunch time. I had some breakfast and drunk some water.

I started off at an easy pace and got to 5km in 30.05 I was happy enough with that as I planned to do 10km in 62mins. I walked past the honest lawyer pub and there is a big water tank there with a tap. I had not taken any water with me today as I was expecting it to didnt!! it came our roasting hot and I was getting burnt badly. I had no hat, no sun glasses and NO water. I carried on to my 10km turn around as I was nearing the turn point I spotted a tap on the outside of the ten pin bowling building. It was all I could think about as I turned was getting back to that tap. I stopped and took a good drink and doused my self in water. The wind was picking up and it was a very hot and dry wind. It felt like it sapped your strength and dehydrated you as you went.

I was feeling very tired by now and started obsessing on the next water stop - 5km ahead of me. I had managed to hold my core strong for the 10km, having very little hamstring pains. It was good to know that I could control the odd pains in my legs but I was finding VERY tiring as I was not used to holding my core so firm for so long. (terrible really as it should just be part of the style) I reached the next water stop and stopped my watch. There is construction around it and so they have barricaded the tap and water tower off. I had to shimmy around the construction tape etc but I took on a really good drink here. Lots more than I normally would but I figured that I had slowed so much now that I was sure it wouldnt matter too much. 500m up the road and I end up with a blasted bug down my throat!!! go figure...I am sure the rotter had hold of the dangly in my throat as I was gagging and coughing to get it out. Sure enough........there am I bent over vomiting up the water I had just taken least that got rid of the bug!!! I thought of going back to drink but figured stuff it....4.5km from home just go!

It was a slow slog up Beatson Road and I could feel my hip flexor pulling, so I slowed down and figured that seeing as time didnt really matter too much today I was not going to worry about it.

I finished my 20km in 2:05:34 - avg pace of 6:17 perhaps a bit slower than my coach had hoped for but it was my first 20km out since the trial race and my legs were feeling like wet noodles!!! I am very very pleased that I didnt go across and walk the Marlborough Half. My coach was right with that one.

First thing I did once I had stretched and showered................I went and brought an Nathan Hydration Belt!!! so now I will have water with me. I was lucky my friend had this brand and loaned it to me awhile ago to try. I loved the Nathan brand as it didnt ride up off your hips and the bottle holders are molded so makes it very easy to access. Plus I have a pouch for my phone and some gels!!!

20km easy pace

Friday, December 02, 2011

10km @ 85% - monaco course

I had a good session with Bec's this morning and have some new exercises to try out. We call it the nerve

I had a 10km at 85% today. So pretty much do the 1okm at my old training pace. I was feeling pretty good today, my legs felt nice and fresh.

I started off feeling good and strong and managed to do one of my fastest first km's along the track. Hmm perhaps a little more than 85% for that one, so I pulled up a little on the downhill and settled into what felt like 85%. I was not puffing or gasping but I could feel I was breathing a little harder than normal.

At about 4km I felt some sharp pains in my right hamstring s0 I took check of my style. I pulled up my torso and tighten up my abs/core and quickly the pain subsided. Each time the pains would start back I would notice that I had relaxed my core again. I turned at 5km in 28:34 and started for home. I knew that from the 7km mark it became up hill and so I tried to push harder when I neared the 7km mark. I think I managed by fastest 7 - 8km split and that was helped by people driving by tooting and cheering from their cars. It was really awesome.

I got home and stretched and then went through my exercises and did my nerve floss last of all. As I type this up I can feel the burning sensation coming on in my right foot so will do a few McKenzie stretchs and see if I can stop it.

total time for today is 58:39 avg pace = 5:52 and avg heart rate 152 - which shows that I was not pushing hard, so I think I actually nailed that walk.

I must admit to being a little nervous about doing my first 20km tomorrow. I am thinking I might aim for a slower than normal time for my first time out....2:05-2:08 sounds good to me.

10km @ 85% - monaco course

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

15km out and back monaco

I was feeling good today. Legs were a little tired from the fartlek and then aqua jogging that night. Its a gorgeous day, hot and sunny with a gentle breeze. Temp was about 18degs ..just perfect. I set out from home and the plan was to not look at my watch and to just pick an easy pace and cruise with it. I had a general aim of 1:33 for the whole walk.

At about the 6km mark I started getting really sharp pains in my right hamstring. But each time I would slow down or ease up, it would hurt more. So I would concentrate hard on tucking butt and pushing with my I would increase speed but pain would stop. I would then get tingles up and down my right leg for the rest of the walk. Enough to really annoy me. (now the walk is over my feet have flared up again so will do my stretches and hope that stops it)

On the way home, just past the 10km mark I bumped into an old friend so we stopped and had a quick chat - so I took the time to stretch while I chatted. Then we parted ways and I headed on for home.

time 1:31:42 a little quicker than I had planned but my heart rate shows I was not pushing hard so I think my coach will be happy with that.

Am starting to wonder what is really going on with my sciatic nerve. The pain in my feet and in my back comes and goes randomly and it starts to wear you down somewhat. I religiously do my exercises and stretches and try hard to sit correctly all the time...anyhow....small rant....I am sure it will come right soon enough.

Link to my data:
15km out and back monaco

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

5km fartlek

I was not really feeling in the mood for this today. My head was still splitting and I had taken way too much medication. But I knew that after having extra days off this week that I had to do this workout. I drove out to the track and stopped in to purchase the ticket for Sports Person of the Year dinner next week. Then as I drove around to the track I noticed that there were alot of cars parked out in the carpark, plus about 4 buses. I got of the car and walked over and saw school kids sports day so no track for me.

My first thought was oh stuff it .... then the instant guilt set in so I decided the next best spot was my old 5km course out at is the flattest spot I could think of.

My first km was a bit of a slog....I didn't warm up .... I just got straight into it. I felt a little stiff at first. My back had been hurting on and off during the day and I was very aware of my calf being tight and hurting as I was walking. Apart from that the walk was going well until about 3km mark when I started to suffer some GI pain and issues. My last km was very uncomfortable but I was pleased to see it done.

total time for 5km was 27:34

1st km = 5:16
2nd km = 2:58 + 2:33 = 5:31
3rd km = 2:55 + 2:35 = 5:30
4th km = 2:58 + 2:35 = 5:33
5th km = 3:03 + 2:36 = 5:39

5km fartlek

Sunday, November 27, 2011

15km out an back monaco

Well after a shocking weekend......due to overindulging at my work Xmas function. Saturdays training did not happen, in fact nothing happened all day! To top it all off it also triggered a migraine. As I knew I had to do 15km I had little choice but to do it today.

The good thing was the wind has stopped so it was a calmer day today.

I felt better today than I did two days ago. I went out at an easy pace, I suffered terrible stitch for the first 3km but it settled down and I was able to continue on. My headache was kept at bay by some good strong anti flams and pain relief. I turned at the 7.5km and discovered that there was a slight breeze for the home stretch. So taking advice from my coach I remained at the same effort and didnt worry that I had slowed a little.

I felt much stronger today but I have noticed that I have lost a little of my endurance fitness. It wont take long to come back and its just a matter of ticking away at the kms.

Total time 1:31:54

15km out an back monaco

Thursday, November 24, 2011

15km windy Monaco

weather = 19 degs and sunny but its WINDY, really WINDY!!!! with Gales tomorrow...oh yipppeeee

I put off doing this walk yesterday due to wind and rain, I figured I couldnt really put it off any longer and had to face doing the walk in to the wind. Todays walk was a disaster....from start to finish!!!

I was stiff and sore from my hard 10km on the treadmil and also sore from the out door exercises done on tuesday night....abs and hamstrings were very tender. Plus I decided to look at the soles of my training shoes and discovered they are had it, so choose to wear a pair I had won but had only really worn a few times. These are not racing flats but a more solid shoe and I thought if I can get used to training in a heavier shoe then it will make a diff when I swap to racing flats........hmmmm....WRONG. By two km my toes were killing me and I felt like I was wearing concrete blocks on my feet. I kept hitting my feet and tripping on the shoes. UGH!!! Plus it was a head wind the whole way out!!!! With some gusts pushing me off the foot path so I struggled to get into any type of rhythm.

My hamstrings were so tight and started hurting alot at the 5km mark. From 5km to 7.5km I was exposed to the full blast of the wind and by now I was pretty much done, I had not get up and go, my feet hurt and I was struggling with the wind. So I just settled in and excepted what ever I got.

I turned and had the wind to my back but it was not an advantage. Cause it was gusting and swirling it didnt really push you .. it was more like shunts. My feet felt like they were being blown off the ground and I was feeling heavy and chunky as it was.

So this was one of my slowest ever 15km's .......... 1:35:11

So now I am trying hard to stretch my legs out. My back injury is still exactly the same as it was 1 year ago.  I am frustrated by this!!! As I cant bend forward I am unable to properly stretch my hamstrings out and so they have shrunk and its causing more problems for my back.  I can only hope one of the physio's will figure it out soon enough.

15km windy Monaco

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

RIP Casey 2003 - 2011

Casey – Our most wonderful Dog.
We married in 2003 and had always thought about getting a dog.  I had not been a doggy person but Shane was.  So after much deliberation we decided to have a look around and see if we could find the right dog.  We didn’t want a puppy so we looked in the local paper for dogs to give away.  That day the only one was a Boxer Lab cross, female 18months, quiet, needs home.  We went out to have a look.  I was expecting a lab looking dog….yellow/golden in colour.  So when the owner brought us out a dog that had Foxy colouring…White with a brown head and patch on back, I was surprised.  He had been given her as a pig dog and he explained that she was definitely NOT a pig dog as she came out with him once….as soon as he shot the gun, she ran all the way back to the car and was found hiding and shaking.  So he needed to find her a good home as he needed working dogs. 
We fell in love with her then and there.  He said he thought she had been mistreated as she was easily startled and timid….hated plastic bags and loud noise but also if you lifted you arms up she would cower.  There was little need for us to confer if we wanted her...Casey had already picked us.  Funny thing, she didn’t want to get in the car.  She had only ever ridden in the trunk and so I had to get in the back seat with her.  It didn’t take very long for her to get over that phobia and she was soon the Queen of the back seat, with her head out the window or resting on Shanes shoulder.
Casey and I on our first outing to the beach 2003

She went EVERY where with us.  She slept in side by our bed, had her own couch/chair in the lounge and adored the cat we had at the time.  She never barked, never made mess’s in side………except for her shedding…man how she was not bald I will never know!!!  Talk about a hair monster.  Her passion was stuffed toys………….oh she loved to bite the eyes off and then slow de stuff them……it was a quick death for any stuffed toy left on the ground.  I loved how she grinned at you when you came home and would do a little corkscrew jump of excitement. 
 As time went on and we were both working full time jobs we thought she might be getting lonely during the day so we welcomed Trixie into our home.  Trixie is a Foxy cross and with them having the same colouring man people thought they were  related in some way. 
We had Casey for nearly 9 years.  The vet had warned us a few years earlier that her front legs – especially her right leg, would get early arthritis due to an injury when she must have been a puppy.  Her elbow tip had been shattered.  So often after long walks she would limp a little or be a little stiffer for a couple of days.  As the years progressed she got heavier and started getting the typical Labrador lumps which made it a little more awkward for her to walk too far.  Not that you would really notice as she LOVED walks and would leap around like a 2 year old…..only to suffer the next day for it.  J
Sadly we had to make the hardest decision as a pet owner……Once we found out she was in pain from her legs, the decision was made easier in away.  Neither of us wanted her to suffer any sort of pain or discomfort. 
The house feels very empty with her around.  Trixie follows Shane everywhere now and hates to be left alone……….and I lay awake at night listening for her tinkle of the collar …as she used to shake her head to make it tinkle as she came down to bed each night. 
RIP my most beautiful and wonderful girl…………..she was the best dog ever.
Beautiful Casey - Nov 2011

Sunday, November 20, 2011

3km fartlek

After a shocking 12km walk the day before and then jumping on to a spin bike for two hours....I was not holding up my hope that today would be a good walk.

It was on my program to do a 5km fartlek but my coach had earlier sad he didnt want me doing fartleks until I was not hurting any more. When I got to the track and started unlocking the rails...I could feel how strong the wind was and figured that a 5km fartlek was out but that I could try for a 3km as I really felt like a need to feel as if my heart rate is right.

I did 3 laps to warm up and then started into it. The first 400m felt surprising easy and good, my breathing was hard but not gasping so I tried to keep the pace up for the next 400m and I ended up slowing a little. Now I could really feel my glutes working hard. As they were tender from the spinning it was easy to feel them as they started to work harder. Next up was the recovery 500m and I was breathing heavy for the first half but started settling again ready for the next fast 500m.

The wind had started to pick up and it was getting colder too. I had one last fast 500m to go. I had forgotten that awful feeling when your nervous system gets all confused and my legs started turning to jelly. I had 200m to go and was having trouble just keeping my legs moving. I was concentrating hard on style and bringing my knees through low and straight. I hit stop and carried on slowly back around the track....My glutes were really fatigued now but the good news was I had no pain during the walk...but after as I walked normally back to the start I could feel pulling in the hip flexor. So I am glad I only did 3km.

Not long after all my walkers arrived for the weekly coaching session. Jamie came for the first time, he is 13 and I know that he will end up being NZ's next best thing. He has a natural style and a willingness to learn. He really wants to look towards Olympics in 8 years. So I got Peter Hague to come down and take Jamie under his wing. So now there is 10 of us walking each Sunday! A great wee group.

1st km = 5:12
2nd km = 2:57 = 2:34 = 5:31
3rd km = 3:02 = 2:35 = 5:37
total time = 16:22

3km fartlek

Friday, November 18, 2011

8km atawhai - strong wind

I was so not feeling today's walk. Too much stuff going on and my head was just full of crud!

It has been super windy all day today so I decided I really didnt feel like the Beatson hill today so I picked the walkway at Atawhai. It made no difference where I went as I would get a head wind one way no matter!

I headed out for my first 4km section with the wind at my back. I picked a pace that I felt I could repeat on the way back. It was fairly easy as I headed out but I was not thinking about my walk and was not paying attention to my body. I had a couple of small niggles in the adductor but nothing too major. I turned at the 4km mark and was instantly blown about. All I could do was punch into the wind and try to put the same amount of effort into it. I did a pretty good job of that as my heart rate did increase even though my pace slowed. By 7km I was having some nasty hamstring pains and I realised that I had been leaning into the wind - with everything happening with my back it was no wonder my hamstrings were pulling and my feet were burning. So I straitened up and tried to get my head back into the walk for the last 1km.

It was not one of my better walks...having lost the minute I gained due to the wind. Total time = 47:44 avg pace 5:58 avg heart rate 157

I have made the decision to not do the Marlborough Half - finances and injury make it an unwise decision.

On a good note: I received the Official Notification from Athletics NZ that I have made selection for the NZ Team. I now get to purchase my uniform and NZ track suit.

8km atawhai - strong wind

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

10km out an back monaco

Nice hot sunny day but with a good stiff breeze (35km) I had lots on today so didnt get a chance to head out until 5pm. This walk was to test out how my hip flexor feels at a longer distance. I was to stick to a comfortable pace and if I felt any sharp pains to stop.

I headed off out up the track and felt good. My legs were stiff and sore but still felt strong. My breathing is getting better and I was not gasping for breath today.

Coming back up Beatson Road I could feel my abductor pulling but so far my hip flexor had felt fine during the walk. I stretched out at the top of the track for the last km home and again could feel aching in my abductor. So will get Bec's to check it out in the morning.

Total time for 10km is 59:05 with an avg hr 161

10km out an back monaco

Monday, November 14, 2011

8km (5km race + 3km after)

I was unsure of doing this.....just the 8km was a little daunting with how my hip flexor was feeling. But I really wanted to go and do the new 5km series and so was going to carry on and finish with 3km.

At the Honest Lawyer event, we get a number to wear. It costs $5 to enter but you redeem your number after the race for a beer or wine so that evens it out good. :) there is a different crowd at this event...not so many of the elite come to this one and so there are more general athletes. I think it makes it fairer to everyone and so will also not go each it gives other walkers the chance to win too.

It was perfect conditions tonight....with little wind, just a light breeze. I was worried about how my hip would hold up and was also curious to see how high I could get my heart rate this time round. After a two week rest it can take a few weeks to settle the heart again. I hit 183 tonight as my max....WOW!! lol

I started off and felt good but by the end of the first km I was breathing hard and I could feel my hip flexor. So I eased up a little and kept up a steady pace. I had a wee runner at my heels and I expected him to pass me but he just stayed about a metre behind me. At the 2.5km turn he had dropped off a little and I recognized him to be Wendy's son. He is doing great for his age and I was really expecting him to zip past me in the last km.

I pushed hard not far past the 3km mark I could feel my hip more and more. I lost a little time as I squelched over the mudflats (about 100m of sand as the tide was out) I then tried to pick up the pace again but again my hip was hurting and I was breathing hard again.

I finished the race in 27:35 ( on my watch it was short ... I got I stopped my watch long enough to take my race number off and then I set off out along the walkway to complete my 3km. I slowed the pace down and worked hard on my technique. My hip pain didnt get any worse....but it didnt get any better either. Lucky I have booked in for physio first thing in the morning.

total time for 8km was 46:14

I have one more week to decide if I will enter the Marlb Half..........with my hip flexor the way it is at the moment, I think it would be stupid to do. I cant risk a long term injury with the Hobart race looming.

8km (5km race + 3km after)

Sunday, November 13, 2011

6km along monaco

My first walk after two weeks off. I decided it was easier to fit it in before I met up with everyone at the track for the coaching session. I got to the track at 9:15am to find that there was an event on and we would not be able to use the track...hmmmm well car park will work.

I stashed my key into my cool little pouch I brought in USA and away I went. First shins I had forgotten how that felt. It didnt last long thank goodness and I picked up the pace a little. My legs felt ok but oh my goodness..............I was huffing like a train!! At the 3km mark I stopped briefly to take my long sleeve off. It is a gorgeous day and was already really hot. On the way back I bumped into Ross and Sue and I stopped quickly to ask how his leg was etc and then I carried on again. As I came up to the 4 km mark I started feeling my right hip flexor again.....simular pain as I had at Long distance Walks. It was not as sharp or intense but never the less I could feel pain. As I pushed for more pace it hurt more so I eased up and just settled for the last km. As I entered back into Saxton Field a couple of my girls drove past me heading to our spot, so I had timed it perfectly. I must admit to being a little concerned about my hip flexor and am now wondering if I did hurt it more than I thought. I will call the physio and get it looked at in a day or two.

I am pondering walking the 5km Honest lawyer tomorrow night. I am hoping to walk it with Shane so will still do my fartlek training too.

all up 34:21 for 6km avg pace 5:43 ............but with a shocking avg hr of 167 (max was 179???)

then when I got home a couple of hours later after doing drills and coaching my group I suggested hubby and I go on a bike ride so we rode 27km in pretty much 2hours. Really enjoyed the bike ride, it was nice and easy............but I DONT like the seats!! lol

6km along monaco

Friday, November 11, 2011

Cairns and a much needed break

Where have I been for the last few weeks?  NOT training that’s for sure.

My coach has kindly given me two weeks rest and I am loving it.  For the first week I flew to Cairns to spend time with my girls and my grandkids.  I got to met Max for the first time.  Dang he is cute.  Sadly while I was there Max got sick.  He started vomiting after every feed.  Teagan took him to the dr and they sent him off to be scanned for suspected pyloric stenosis.  (which basically means no food can pass through his stomach)  But I don’t think the Dr Thought it would take 6 days til we could get the scan and so didn’t really tell us how dangerous it was for max to go so long without feeding properly.  Infact by telling us he was just a happy chucker really didn’t help.  I remember teagan asking on Saturday if we should take him to the Hospital…….we all looked at him laying in her arms gurgling happily and decided that he seemed happy enough.  How wrong we were……..So I flew out on Monday and Tuesday they scanned wee Max.  As soon as it was done they were sent direct to the Dr and it was pretty much confirmed that it was pyloric stenosis and then she sent them direct to the hospital.  Poor wee Max was put on IV fluids and was not to fed at all.  I can only imagine how hard this must have been on Teagan and Josh.  But they stood together and found amazing strength.  After two more tests/scans as the info had to be sent to surgeons in Townsville - Max and Teagan were flown to Townsville for surgery on Thursday and I am told that he came through like a trouper and has just to wait a few more hours until they can feed him.  It will be such a relief to Teagan and Josh to be able to feed him and have him not react in pain or be sick. 

I adored my time over there.  Katie-May has grown up so much and is such a delight to be a round.  We had such a fun day on her birthday as we painted up the little wooden doll’s house she was given.  Josh still has to put it together yet.  Max was just adorable and loved to be cuddled….whats a Nana to do……… cuddle him I did!!  It was incredibly hard to leave them all but I know that next time I come back the kids will be that little bit older and will still know who I am.  Thank god for skype.

My two adorable grand children!  

So now that I am back in NZ I have just one more week off.  I have enjoyed the rest, gained a little weight back (which I needed too) I have been doing glute strength exercise’s every day and now Psoas strengthen too.

I also got back to find that I had been selected as a finalist for the Tasman Sports Person Of the Year awards.  I am really rapt about that one.  So now  to settle back down, find a full time job, dive into training and be HAPPY!

This one is of Nana, Katie-May and Aunty Kik's

Sunday, October 30, 2011

20km Long Distance Champs

I flew out of Blenheim on the "flying pencil" on Saturday and met up with Terri and Phillip in Wellington. From here we drove up to Palmerston North and arrived in time for the AGM of the Race Walk committee. Pus it was a good meet and great with all of the walkers who had turned up.

We headed around to Sue's house were we settled down for the night. By now I was about to throw my cell phone out the window. It had fast become an expensive paper weight. I had been unable to send any texts or get onto the internet, so I was totally off the grid for the weekend.

I had the best sleep ... I am known to get so wound up before a race that I dont sleep at all but for some I had settle down and slept well. We got up early and had breakfast, it had been raining through the night and was still a little drizzly in the morning. It was so muggy and warm, even at 7am I was only in a tank top and shorts. We travelled to the course and I found out that it was on a 500m loop and I must admit at first not liking the idea at all. But on thinking about it, last year the Long Distance Walks were on a 500m loop (1 km laps) so it was nothing new really. We headed out and warmed up, it was I am told 90% humidity and about 13 degs at race start.

We were called over to the start and had to make room for Graham Jones who was the solo 50km walker and had started at 7am (2 hours earlier) The officials opened up the course to fit us all on. The only negative I have to say is that they asked for all the 10km Championship walkers to line up first...when they should have had the 20km and TT trial walkers as I ended up boxed in behind an older walker and two juniors who started way slower. The gun goes off and away we go, I am stuck behind slower walkers and unable to get around them for a good 20m then when I finally broke clear of them I was faced with the speed hump that they had opened up for us to go over (all of us were asked if we wanted it opened or closed for the first lap - and we opted to have it open to not make a bottle neck) So I still aimed for the side that was to be used in the race that was flat. I settled in behind Eric and wished I was able to keep up with him for the whole race.....(next year, that will be a goal) by now Graham Jones walked past me (at 2 hours in to his 50km he was still faster than me!!!)

My plan had been to do a quick couple of kms and then settle into my pace but I wanted to try hard not to go slower than 5:50 per km. I must say that I pretty much stuck to that too. I felt good and strong as I walked through 5km and on through to 10km. On my 10th km lap I was starting to feel light headed and I had been drinking each lap, but I had brought some gels and had set up a bowl on the drinks table (a first for me) so I asked the lady to pass me my gel as I came back past. The sachet was ok, taste was a little blarrkkk but it was STICKY and I end up with a very very sticky hand and chin. I was surprised at how quick it seemed to work as my legs picked up very quickly. I pressed on and again still felt good and strong at the 15km.

I knew I would be chasing Rosie and she was a good 5mins a head of me, but I had NO idea of what Leslie was capable of. So I kept an eye on the gap between us and by 10km I was pulling away by a good 10m each km so at the 15km mark I would guess Leslie was 2mins behind me.

My back had so far held together, I had no pain in my feet and was still feeling strong. I got to 16km and saw that my split was slower and so as I headed into the lap I decided that now was a good time to pick up the pace and start to push - and this was when the wheels feel off. I picked up my pace and within 50m of increasing my pace I felt a sharp stabbing pain in my right hip flexor and had trouble pulling my right leg through to make the next step. I slowed up instantly and took check of myself and realised I was limping badly. I looked ahead and saw I was coming into the next judges zone so pulled my self up tall with my core and pushed hard through my glute to get my leg to function. I managed to carry on but as I went through the turn I knew I was in trouble. The turns for todays race were right hand turns, and so as I put my right leg down and put my weight over it to step on, the pain was sharp and intense instantly. From this turn there was 100m to the start / finish mat and it was here I got my first and only caution. It was going through my mind to pull out but as I crossed the line I figured it was 3km to go and even if I slowed right down I would still hold on to 2nd and qualify. I was just worried re the judges. My pace dropped to 6.06 per km and I limped on ..... share grit and determination was the only thing that was going to get me through this. The bell sounded and it was one lap to go. I tried so hard to pick up my pace and I did managed to do so for a small section. I rounded the last corner and knew then it was only going to hurt for 100m more and I pushed as hard as I could and crossed the line with everyone cheering and calling out to help me keep going.

1:55:55 OMG, I even achieved a Pb too but most importantly...............I had made the auto selection for the NZ Team!!!!

Now I get 2 whole weeks off and in this time I am to start working on my right glutes but the best part of this time off...............I fly to Cairns tomorrow and get to send a week with my girls, josh and grand children................I just cant wait!

So thank you to my sponsor's Health 2000 Ltd, Sports Therapy and the best husband in the world - Shane.

20km Long Distance Champs

Monday, October 24, 2011

10km out an back atawhai

Gosh what an exciting walk this turned out to be.

It is a long weekend for us. Labour Day and its a gorgeous day!!! Picture perfect to be exact. I got my sleep in and then decided that I really should go do the walk now as its going to get pretty hot today. So at 9.30am I drove down to the Park where I start this walk - Its nice and flat and follows the sea.

I started out and at 2km was feeling very BLAAAA, my legs felt numb and jelly like. I wondered if I was going to even be able to keep up an easy pace I felt so empty....but I focused on my technique and visualized my glutes working with each stride and pictured how I want to be walking and before I knew it, 5km was right there and it was turn around time. 29:02 well thats not so bad I figured.

I had just passed the 6km marker when I noticed that a car had just suddenly stopped about 500m up from me in the middle of the road and other cars were braking heavy to avoid collision (its 100km speed on this part of the road) the cars all started up again and I carried on. Next thing there was a screaming of brakes and smoke from tyres and a large BANG! as this happened I notice a police car was driving past (in the opp direction) so I quickly started waving my arms in the hope he would look in his rear mirror and see me.....which he did. The police officer turned around and could clearly see then why I had caught his attention. Up a head were two cars - both towing trailers, pulled over to the side of the road with black skid marks on the road and wee bit of glass.

(if you look at my data and look at my heart will see the big spike in my heart rate - must have been the adrenaline shot! ) lol So I ran up the road quickly to see that no one was hurt and to offer any assistance if needed. As I got closer to the scene it became apparent what had caused all the cars to suddenly brake and stop or swerve .......7 baby ducklings were trying to cross the Main Road to get to their very distressed Mum. It was heart breaking to watch as there was nothing we could do to help .... not worth getting hit by a car ourselves and then we would probably get them across only for them to return back later that day.

So I left the police officer to deal with the drivers and headed off. Funny thing, now I was feeling great. My body felt nice and strong and I could feel myself slotting into a nice strong pace. I started thinking that this is how I would like my second 10km to go next weekend...I would be very very happy if it did pace out like todays walk.

Total time for 10km was 57:54 ................hmmm perhaps I need someone to give me one hell of a good scare in the middle of long distance walks....get that adrenaline shot to the heart!! lol

10km out an back atawhai

Saturday, October 22, 2011

leg 3 - half marathon

Today I joined in with a team - my group of walkers that I have been coaching. It is the Waimea Half Marathon and the relay went around the old course which is a 4 loop of rabbit island. The Half Marathon course has been changed to make it a two loop - but it was unliked by walkers. It was more a cross country course with sand, pot holes and gravel to pick through.

Andrea had entered the Half and was the only one missing from our group for the team.

I was given lap 3 which is 5.4km long. We cheered off Sharon and she headed off on lap 1. The drizzle had set back in again but it wasnt too cold. Everyone huddled under umbrella's and cheered. We had guessed what time she would be in by and man she rocketed in way sooner than we expected. Such a fast transition....and then it was Maree. She rocketed off for her 5.4km lap. We got video and photos as she went around the loop and back past us again. Next up was me and we watched out for Maree - as we were wearing pink we were pretty easy to spot.

Maree rounded the corner and zoomed her way to me and tag! turn....I was very aware of my back and hamstring and so took it a little slower than I normally do and picking up the pace a little for the 2nd km. My form felt good but I was breathing heavier than I like - specially compared to my heart rate. I got passed by Stu (a runner) at about the 3.5km mark so I tried to pick up my pace and chase him. But he slowly pulled away and made some ground on me. Even though it was only 5.4km I was really pleased I was not doing more or the half......I was pretty much over racing at the moment. I pushed hard to finish and tag Raylene and sent her off on her leg.

We then all gathered on the finish to watch everyone come through. Wendy was first walker home in 2:4:52 and Neroli was not too far beind in 2:10

While we were watching the finish we all noticed a runner wobbling from side to side as he ran to the finish.....stumbling, his legs started to buckle about 10m from the finish. Thank god the guys on the side were watching and reacted as fast as they did, with John jumping the tape and rushing to his side to help him across and then on to the medic tent. As they crossed over I called out to get the medic and to warn him that he was needed....NO ONE could find the medic???? turns out he was sitting in the front of the ambulance reading a paper and not even paying any attention to the race. He wandered over and was clearly out his deapth of knowledge with on lookers taking over the care of Hugh. Just as Hugh started to settle another runner went down on the finish line. This time he hit the road and rolled off to the grass. Again I called for the medic who was looking bewildered and like a possum caught in headlights. Three men picked this guy up and dragged him over to the ambulance where the medic got them to sit the guy in a chair. I decided to stay close and watch over this guy as he reminded me of how I was when I crossed the line. I was horrified when I saw him being fed Red water was given. Then when I looked back people were giving this guy banana's and he was clearly unable to chew or swollow....he was gray in colour, eyes shut and then he start making odd faces and hallucinating. It was here that I stepped in. The medic was not watching either patient but was talking to some kids away from the area. I went over and said that I dont think they should be giving him any food or poweraid....and thankfully both women stopped, just as he started convulsing and gagging....I called again to the usless medic and told him what was happening and this guy was like...yeah yeah ..he will be ok. I got some more guys to help me and we got this guy out of the chair and on to the ground. He was vomiting and choking by now. The medic comes over to assist and ends up laying him on his stomach face first in his vomit. PEACHY!!!! Finally we get a board out of the ambulance and get this guy into the medivac ambulance. By now I was very concerned for this chap and I ran off to find the women in charge and informed her that an ambulance with real medics/paramedics needs to be called.....urgently. Thankfully she did. Ambulance arrived and transported the chap to the hospital and we were told later at prize giving that he had recovered and was doing ok. I think for future years, the club needs to pay a little extra and get St John staff at the event instead of pretend play medics that only know how to put on a plaster. This medivac ambulance was not equipped for todays event.

But other than that last little drama, the event was awesome fun. We had a blast.

so I did 5.4km in 30:03

leg 3 - half marathon

Friday, October 21, 2011

8km out an back atawhai

Wow, what a day! After it being cooler yesterday, we get hit with some heat today! Its a VERY windy day but its hot. The weather site says 24 degs and wind at 45km/hr.

I had 8km on my program. I was unsure if my coach wanted me to walk today or not but as he was not online when I checked I figured that I should at least try. I was not sure how I would feel. I have been pretty sore today - behind my knees and shoulders oddly enough. I can feel that my psoas is needing adjusting as it hurts and when I try to do it my self it is just too painful to put enough pressure on it.

I picked the atawhai course as its flat and scenic. There is no where around that is sheltered from the wind here so it didnt matter what course I picked. I started out and took it very easy as I slowly warmed up. The wind was behind and really pushing me along so I slowly increased my speed and felt comfortable enough. I hit the 4km mark and turned straight into the wind. Wow it was strong!!! I was pushing hard and felt like I was going in slow motion. By 6km I was pooped and felt like I had a huge sail attached to me that I was dragging. It was getting harder and harder to racewalk as I almost felt like I needed to lean into the wind and just power walk back.

I did still manage to make it back to the car in under 47:59

But still I felt mentally better in this walk, but still have no power. I cant wait to get to the chiropractor on Tuesday.

8km out an back atawhai

Thursday, October 20, 2011

5km road race

4pm and I am again back at the track. This time for a 5km Road race. Again the weather is perfect, with high clouds and little breeze. There were lots more faces today. Lots of eager people keen to strike out for 5km. As I walked into to the track I recognised a wiggling butt that was walking in front of me.....Sue Hoskins! she is kindly having us come to stay next weekend. Yay

I stripped down and headed out on to the track for a warm up and did a lap with Neroli and then Pete. I was feeling pretty good and was looking forward to a good race. I knew that there was no chance of recreating the awesome 5km I did for the Nelson Champs but I was hoping to come in close. My style was coming together again and now it was just a matter of trusting it and putting some speed into it. (which I had yet to do)

We all lined up for the race start at 5pm, it was a dodgy start with so many runners and walkers starting together 50m out from a hair pin corner...hmmmm bottle neck!!! Sure enough we all hit that corner, lucky the fastest runners had pulled away but there was still a lot of people milling as we rounded the corner. Then it was full charge along the road way..nice long straight. I passed the 1st km marker in 5:09 and I felt great and even though I was breathing hard I felt strong and my style felt easy. Then in just 500m the wheels fell off and everything changed. Suddenly I felt a sharp pain hit me behind both my knees and in my hamstrings. It was like I had lost all my top gears and was over reving the gear that I was left with. As hard as I tried I just got slower. As we rounded back onto the track at the 2.5km mark Neroli passed me and knew I was in pain. She had seen it all happen and new instantly that my back had gone on me. I tried hard to power up again and managed a few seconds but by now my legs just felt empty and dead. I had nothing left. ZIP NADA! so much for the go hard and have a good blow out!.... I blew out.

I stayed in the race but I had decided that if I get pain in my back i was going to pull out. Lucky my back held together and I finished.

27:44 is not a bad time by any means....but it was not what I was hoping for, so I was disappointed in my self. And here in steps my coach and why I owe him so much. He phones me to see how things have gone and we go over my walk.......he instantly makes me feel better and explains what has happened to me and why and also explains that this happens to them all and to not beat my self up about it. I have booked in for a chiropractor next week and he is positive that with getting my back adjusted and then my psoas reset....that all will be fine and that I will still be fantastic for next weeks 20km Trial race.

5km road race

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

16km out an back monaco

Its a clear sunny day - approx 15degs - but its windy. 20 - 25 km/hr gusts. I knew that once I get around to Monaco that there would be no shelter and I would get knocked around but there are really no spots around town to do a 16km walk that wont have the same issues. So it was time to suck it up and head out.

I felt good for the first 3km, just ticking along at about 5:50 pace and feeling good. Not really sure when I noticed it but behind my left knee started hurting and not long after the same behind my right knee. Gosh I haven't felt that pain for years. I took note of how I was walking and everything seemed fine. I had just been at the physio and had my back and glutes seen to. I know my physio is concerned about my back and feels that I am pushing it pretty hard and is worried it will all go 'bang' pretty quick.

I know how important it is to get a distance walk out this week so I kept going and hoped it will come right. I went through 5km at 29:26 and was not overly happy with that. I turned at the 8km mark in 47:15 - which was better but not by much. I then turned to come home and went head to head with the wind. Its funny how you dont notice it so much when its behind you but man when its a head on......not much fun. I pushed hard and tried to keep my pace up but the harder I tried to push the more it hurt behind my knees and now also in the small of my back. This was not so good. There was little I could do but settle with what pace my body would let me do. I went through 10km in 59:54 and knew I was slowly losing any gain I had made earlier. It was now the up hill part of the walk home so now choice now but to just grind it home.

total time for 16km was 1:38:22

16km out an back monaco

Monday, October 17, 2011

Maximus Graham Wells

Introducing the newest member of our family.  My absolutely gorgeous Grandson - Maximus Graham Wells, born via caesarean at 8:54am on 17 October.  Weighing in at a very healthy 10lb!

He is the sweetest wee boy and is a good blend of both his Mum and Dad.  His big Sister Katie-May got to met him later that day and I am sure the two will be fast friends.

I am flying over to Cairns on 1st November to met this wee man and to catch up with my Girls and Grand daughter, who I have missed terribly.  I can already feel how hard it is going to be when it is time to come home.

So be warned folks......this blog will become over run again with GRAND CHILDREN posts.....  :)

Sunday, October 16, 2011

10km road walk

After a night of celebrating at the hanger party, I had to get up today and do another 10km race. I had already decided that todays race would be at recovery pace and I expected to take about 58mins. There were alot more walkers today as the rest of the races are unjudged so the recreational walkers can now have some competition. Which is great for all the walkers.

I started out and just settled into easy pace. Neroli was walking just ahead of me and I was happy to follow along behind her. Slowly I caught her up and settled in beside her. Roger walked past us and we let him zip along figuring that we would pick him back up later in the race. We held a nice and steady pace and chatted from time to time as we raced along by the estary. We had headed out on my training ground so I know the track well. We turned at the 5km point and headed back, slowly we gained on Roger and passed him at the 6km marker.

When we hit the 9km marker I decided to push a little bit for the last km. My back was still feeling pretty sore but my legs were feeling ok at the moment. I focused on staying up right and using my glutes to power on and used the advice of the judges - keeping my toes up to help with my left leg. I pulled away from neroli and entered the track to come along to the finish and was surprised to cross in 57:16

I stayed on to cheer in all my walkers and was so so proud of them all. Neroli and I walked back over to the convection centre and I managed to get a very quick massage on my back and behind my right knee. Then we made our way back for the medals. I stayed on and chatted to many walkers. Raylene and I were chatting about the half marathon this coming weekend and she mentioned she didnt think she could walk another 10km and asked if I would like to do 5km and enter with their team. So as they need 4 we asked Maree to join in to. So I have a 5km race this thursday and now I am racing on Saturday but only 5km.

10km road walk

10,000m Track - NZ masters record walk

The day had come. Gosh was I nervous, even more so than any of my races in Sacramento. I think cause it was home town and I felt I had the expectations of my sponsors, friends and general public to do great!

We woke to a perfect day for racing. Still, cool and calm. It was sunny and approx 10degs when we got to the track. I went to the registration table and went to get my numbers and was given one number. I explained that race-walkers must have two numbers for front and back, so I headed off to find the chief judge and have him explain it. Soon enough a second lot of numbers were produced and we got into the meet and great of everyone. I went off on my own and started warming up out on the track. Soon enough others followed out and did similar.

We all lined up for race briefing. As they were starting the 3000m with the 10,000m they had to explain where the stop point was and also to explain about the DQ board (as for most of the walkers this was their first ever judged walk)

We started out and I took lead. Not the spot I wanted as I had expected Wendy to take lead spot. But I stayed to plan and settled into my pacing after the first km. My aim was to stick to 2:17 per lap and for most I was under that. I fluctuated around 5:40 per km - which is pretty much what I had wanted to do. Wendy stayed on my shoulder until the 6km mark and then made a burst away. I opted whether to chase but decided to stick to my own race plan. At the 9km mark I got my first warning for bent knee (left knee) and then another from the next judge. I corrected and pulled my self back up again.

Each time we would pass in front of the grand stand everyone would cheer and call out. This helped so much as by now my back was hurting badly and I was struggling. The last km felt like it took forever!!!

I crossed the line, hit stop on my watch and then waited for a moment until I checked it. 56:34 Wahooooo I got it.....Omg, I actually got it. Next I turned to cheer in Neroli and watching her cross over to get her NZ Masters record was just awesome. I was so thrilled for the club and the organizers of the South Is Masters Games .... that set it up for 3 Masters records on the first morning of events!

I have never felt so proud to be a walker.

10,000m Track - record walk

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

15km out and back

After a hard physio session and feeling pretty sore from the spinning, core and stretching from the Womens Activator Series last night. I was not sure how I would go for 15km tonight.

My legs and glutes were pretty stiff and sore, but Debs had given me the ok to test out my back. I was to stop and do back extensions if it started to hurt during the walk.

I started out at an easy pace and went up along the walkway, I was starting to get warm and thought of stopping and taking my long sleeve off. I am very glad I didn't as by 3km it started spitting and by 5km it was raining. The temp started dropping very quickly and I was getting cold. My legs were feeling very heavy but I kept my pace easy and strong.

I am so looking forward to my rest day tomorrow :)

15km out and back

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

3km, 2km & 3 x 1km track

With all the extreme weather warnings in place I was picking todays track was going to be ugly.  Turns out the weather cleared by lunch time and by 1pm the sun was out and it started getting pretty hot.

I met Neroli down at the track and she decided to do the same workout as me.  Her fitness is picking up nice and fast, so its helpful to me to have her on the track as she is not far behind me.

I had 12km yesterday with two bursts of Race Pace.  I did really well and ended up adding in 3 bursts.  I used the walkway out in Richmond so it was nice and flat.

My track session went well.  I was tired from the 12km and the track on Sunday and Saturday.  But I still managed to push and be faster than my last 3km, 2km session the other day.

I am on track to achieve the time I am aiming for this weekend.

Saturday, October 08, 2011

3km, 2km & 3 x 1km track

Woke up to a gorgeous day! I raced down to the track at 10am as I wanted to get this one out of the way. I have my best mate coming over to visit today.

I got to the track and it was really busy down there. One week till South Island Games and so everyone is out getting in that last minute training.

My back has been hurting again and once more leaving me with burning feet. Sitting in a plane just doesn't agree with me and I end up really hurting for a few days after. I wanted to put out a good track session today and the first 3km felt good, the second burst of 2km didn't. For the first time my back started hurting during the walk and the pain in my feet came on too. I was struggling on my last lap. So when I was recovering I dropped to the grass and did my back extensions, hoping that would help. I continued on and completed the next 3 x 1km's but never felt comfortable during them and my back just hurt more and more. I was pleased when it was over and I could head for home. So I am back to sitting up right in the office chair or laying on the floor. I have one week to sort this and I will!

So here are my splits:-
5:18, 5:24 + 5:27 = 16:09

5:32 + 5:33 = 11:05

3 x 1km

3km, 2km & 3 x 1km track

Friday, October 07, 2011

NEXT Magazine Woman of the Year 2011

I was most excited to learn that I was a finalist in the Sports Section for Next Magazine's Woman of the Year.  This was the second year this event has been run and I really hope that they continue to do so.  

As the day came closer I was contacted by Next Magazine and offered accommodation, to which I quickly accepted as I had not sorted out where I would stay and it was this offer that sealed my decision to fly up and go to the event.  I was really surprised when I found out that I would be staying at the Rydges Hotel.  It is super flash!!!

My day started out with my flight up to Auckland on Thursday afternoon.  I caught the Airbus into the city and walked up to find the Rydges.  I checked in and made my way up to level 7 and found my room.  I had 3 hours to kill so I kicked back and watched tv and checked out my room.  Aly Cook and I had arranged to be each others date for the night and she had very kindly offered to give me a lift to and from the event.  I was so thankful for this as I really was not sure how I was going to get there other than walking.

We were dropped out outside the Art Gallery and as we were a little early we mingled out side with some of the other early arrivals too.  I loved the huge tree laying on its side in a pool of water with BRIGHT red leaves, so Aly and I had a photo taken in front of it.  I had seen another couple trying to take their own photo so I went over and offered to take their photo for them and they returned the favor.  The lady was Dr Christine Couldrey - Ultra Distance Athlete, so we chatted while we waited to be let in.  The Art Gallery has just been finished and so I think this event is one of the first events to be held in it.  

I must admit to not being very 'arty'....I know what I do and don't like...but that doesn't really help much when wandering in an Art Gallery as I have to say that nothing caught my eye and some of the rooms didn't feel like the art that was displayed flowed or fitted together....but that is just my own thoughts.

The first thing as we entered the room - we were all greeted and given our own Pandora Bracelet with a crown charm and two lock charms.  WOW, and then we were also given a white Carmelia to wear on our wrist.....this was worn by the finalists, so we could all know each other etc.   We were given a glass of bubbles and started mingling.  I spoke with Jenny Shipley and many many other women whom I could not put names too.   The wine kept flowing, each time your glass was empty it would be filled, I was feeling very heady and needed food.  Ladies wandered among us with finger food to nibble on.  It was a lovely selection - small meat balls, bacon wrapped sausage, chicken, seafood wrap and stuffed mushrooms.

There was a lovely string quartet playing as approx 200 guests mingled and talked, the buzz from the room made it difficult to hear what each was saying.  I loved standing back and people watching.  The clothing, shoes and hair.....everyone was dressed impeccably.  At last the moment of the evening came and we all gathered around to hear and see who would be the winners of each section.

The winner of the sports section was just as I had guessed - Jayne Parsons - Paralympian and I agree totally with the judges decision, she truly is an inspiration to women, overcoming domestic violence and loosing her sight - to then take up cycling.  Is bravery and courage beyond belief.  

The overall Winner was Lesley Elliott.  For those not from NZ and don't know, her daughter Sophie Elliott was brutally murdered 4 years ago at the hands of her then boyfriend.  Lesley has written a book and launched the Sophie Elliott foundation to help change the attitude towards domestic violence.  

It was the most amazing and special evening, I was so honored to have been made a finalist and getting to spend the evening with so many inspiring and amazing women.

Thank you Next Magazine and Pandora, I cant wait to see who will be nominated for 2012's Next Woman of the year.