My epic weekend

Despite going back to work after 4 weeks off I have had a great week and have some of cool stuff to share with you all.

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Last Saturday I started my training with Sydney Striders again for the 6ft track trail (ultra) marathon which takes place in march 2015 in the Blue Mountains. Last year this was my first trail marathon and it was a most memorable experience. I loved every part of training for this race too, the people, the trails, and the challenges I conquered out there each week. If you would like to read about the 2014 race see here > https://haileyruns.wordpress.com/2014/03/10/2014-six-foot-track-marathon/

And now for last Sunday where I headed up to Narrabeen for the Sydney Trail Series (STS) with a few of my buddies from Sydney Harbour Runners (SHR). STS were hosting 7km, 10km & 15km events and normally I would always go for the long option, but seen as I had run the day before I chose the 7km short course. When I arrived the 15km race had just started and I got to say hello to a few friends I recognised out there and wished them well. I picked up my bib and ran into the lovely Kristy Dearinger, a friend and Iron(wo)man who is also a great person. She was running the 10km event with her friend Andrew.

I got to the start line with my SHR buddies and we all wished each other well. We had all signed up for the short course and those 3 are super speedy so I doubted that I would see them again until after the race. The gun went off and we all got moving up the first of several hills that would make up the first half of the race. It was steady going on fire trail and then got more and more technical as the course went along. I love technical so I was really feeling great and enjoying the playtime out in this new neck of woods. The first half of the course was pretty tough but the views at the top were amazing as promised, however I did not stop to take photos like I normally do, instead I carried on and tried to catch up to those in front of me.

I kept a very steady pace the whole run and the second half played to my strength, downhill. I overtook people as I worked my way down the trails and rocks and caught up with some of the 15km & 10km runners too. I saw Troy from my RunLab Cronulla crew who was doing the 15km event and it was also his first trail run. I felt great, my calves were a little tight but overall I felt I was in good shape. I kept moving down the hills and gained a lot of speed on the final descent, even though Troy went flying past me (ha ha). I looked up at one point and I could see my friend Kate about 200m ahead which was strange because she is very fast, but I just kept moving and made my way around the athletics track which was the final lap and finished the course in just under 43 minutes. I had been hoping for 45mins so i was very happy with my time. I saw the girls and we chatted about the course and how much we loved it.

And here’s the best bit, I came 4th!! 4th female outright!! That has never happened before in my life (well perhaps in primary school, over 20 yrs ago) and I actually did not even realise until I got home that night and checked the results online. Apparently they called my name out as I won my age group too, how awesome is that!! I was very, very proud 🙂

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Happy Running 😀

 

Warriewood Wobbler with Trailblazers

Originally this blog was going to be about my Sunday run with the Trailblazers, which was my first trail run in over 8 weeks time (how exciting!!!!), however I was doing some reading (online) and things changed a bit…..

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Today I was reading a blog written by Sally McRae (trail runner extraordinaire) and her words put into light exactly what I have been thinking over the past few weeks. She was out trail running when her shoelace came undone and she instantly felt annoyed as it meant she had to stop and bend down to fix her lace mid run. As she got up to run she continued to think about tying laces and after some mindful evaluation came to the conclusion that this action “Would Now Be The Inescapable Moment To Be Thankful“.

About 9 weeks ago I started to get sick and this eventually turned out to be pneumonia. I had planned a 4 weeks break from running during Sep/Oct to let my body recover from the huge training load that I had done over the past 18 months, however this illness forced me to take an early break from running.

At the time I was annoyed that I could not train and that I had to miss the Sydney marathon. All my friends were running in various races during the event and I was to be a pacer for the first time. Like most runners I hate missing out on events (FOMO) but I really shouldn’t have been dwelling on the negative. What I should have focused on was how lucky I had been to have full health over the past 18 months, as it allowed me to be 100% committed to my training and my races, how awesome is that! And that’s just the start to it!

I’m very lucky that I am a runner, that I have the ability to run and can lace up anytime to explore the world. I’m also very grateful to have the love and support of my family and friends, through thick and thin. Over the past year I have achieved monumental goals and distances that used to seem impossible to me, and I could not have done this without the love and support that I get each and every day.

I have a lot to be grateful for and every time I lace my shoes I will take a moment to remember this, so thanks Sally.

#wetieshoes #bendtiemove

Read Sally’s full story here: http://www.sallymcrae.com/2014/11/01/we-tie-shoes/

And thanks to all the Trailblazers for the most enjoyable run yesterday, it was a gorgeous day and we are so lucky! You guys rock!

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Happy Running 😀

Oxfam Training run on the Coastal Classic Course

Last Sunday our Oxfam crew (minus Roger who was doing a First Aid course, very handy) ran the Coastal Classic course from Otford to Bundeena. I opted for the one-way version, however our team mates Dom & Em decided to try Otford to Buneena to Otford, which sounds crazy right?! Well I would have joined them but as I had run the M7 road marathon the week before my body was still recovering from that and I knew it would be tough just pushing myself to go one way.

We were so lucky with the weather, it was very cold to start but the day cleared up and got warm while we were running. You should see my tan lines, hilarious!!

The first 5kms felt great and we ran into some wildlife before hitting the first big hill, below you can see a Joey and a Deer (they tried to tell me it was an Alpaca but it doesn’t have the long neck of an Alpaca so I didn’t believe them!)

1_Joey

2_Deer

We also had the wonderful Scott (who is training for GNW 100 miler!!) join us for the trip, he had already run 50km on the previous day so the picture below shows how he was feeling. Great guy and very knowledgeable!

3_Scotty Tired

As I stopped to get some photos, Em and Dom made their way up the hill towards the sunrise so I snapped the below shot, one of my fave pictures from the run now.

3_Sunrise

And of course because I was going super slow Dom decided to take a seat while he waited for me. My legs were feeling very heavy and I felt like I didn’t have much gas in the tank despite my constant food & drink.

6_Dom patiently waiting

And then there were more hills, some of the steps were huge even for 6 foot tall me, I’d hate to be any shorter and trying to climb that one below.

4_First Big Hill

And the view from the top was beautiful. This whole course is beautiful. The coastline we ran past the whole time was nothing short of spectacular and I’d have to say this is my favorite run in terms of the view.

5_Heading North

We stopped at Garie beach for the bathroom and then we kept heading north. I ran ahead to get a shot of the guys who had probably fallen behind talking about food. So here’s Dom and Scott running right beside the ocean.

4_Dom on coastline

4_DScott on coastline

And at the top of the next hill i turned around to see where we had come from, wow!

6_Beach crossing behind us

At about the halfway point we had run into my mate Nigel who had run from Bundeena to meet us and run back with us. So here he is below with Dom and Emma.

6_Group shot

And he Nigel is trying to motivate me up the next hill, I think I was walking a lot by this stage. It really wasn’t a pleasant days run for me, so thank goodness for the views!!

7_Heading north with Nigel

And what we like to call the White Cliffs of Dover…

7_White cliffs no people

My favorite spot.

7_White Cliffs looking south

Nigel and I ran together for most of the last 10kms as the rest of the gang had gone ahead. I had told them earlier to not stop for me as I knew they were going to be out for much longer as they were doing the return trip. Thankfully I had Nigel to keep me moving, as i honestly think I would have walked most of it if he had not been there.

After feeling the way i did during that run I knew that I had not recovered from the marathon yet, and that i needed to take it easy over the next couple of weeks as there was less than 3 weeks till Oxfam Trailwalker. I really need to be in my best shape for Oxfam so my eyes are on the prize and I won’t be letting my team down.

I got home and was wrecked. I ate everything I could fine and then tackled the couch for a snooze, but I was unable to sleep (not sure why). My knees were stiff and my hips were feeling worn out. Later that night I had a red wine and ended up sleeping like a baby.

Emma and Dom managed to finish the double journey in 10 hours and my hat goes off to them, they would have been exhausted by the end but very good preparation for our jorney that lies ahead.

If you would like to sponsor our Oxfam team, please use this link: https://trailwalker.oxfam.org.au/team/home/17564

Happy Running 😀

Please support our Oxfamily

train buddies

on the train

Firstly I want to thanks Roger for taking such great photos, they really capture the fun times that have on the trails and it’s great to be able to share that with you all.

Last Saturday we boarded the train at Berowra Station early on Saturday morning headed for the Hawkesbury River. The plan was to run sections 1 and 2 of the Oxfam course and we were all looking forward to the first checkpoint where Roger’s mum & her partner norm were going to meet us with coffee and food. It was bloody cold that morning.

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We got to Hawkesbury River and lots of hikers/runners got off the train and headed for the trail just like us, it’s great to see so many other groups out there training on the course too. We had a little chat with most of the groups that we ran past as they were all walking, and we wished each other well for race day.

Only 6 weeks to go!!

sunrise 2

 

sunshine shot

Emma and Dominic were leading the pack and Roger and I both stopped to take some photos in a few spots, my favorite shot of the day is the one below.

sunrise

The water was so flat up there amongst the hills, such a clear sky too.

lake 2

 

 

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We all ran and laughed and joked around quite a lot for this run, it was a great morning and check out our support crew below. I had decided to make a kilt to keep me warm at the stop while i ate everything offered to me (I don’t recommend this, ha ha) – hard boiled eggs, bread, salt packets, coffee….

our checkpoint crew

How good is my kilt?

my kilt

At the checkpoint Roger also picked up his bacon & egg subway wrap and proceeded to eat it during the next section as we ran down the mountain – talk about showing off. Clearly we were going way too slow for him – ha ha

roger eating sub and running

And not only did our run involved running, it also involved climbing up and down rock surfaces which is always fun. At one point I made my own way down a rock and Emma followed me as i led her astray. We got there in the end and it was one of the most enjoyable trail runs I’ve ever had. Thanks team!!

rock climbing

So here is my awesome Oxfamily (below) and if you want to support us you can do so via this link: https://trailwalker.oxfam.org.au/team/home/17564

oxfamily

 

Happy Running 🙂

Running on empty

Have you ever been out on a run and your legs felt like dead weights? That was me on Sunday, I was struggling with every step and it felt like I was doing more harm than good. I have actually never felt so flat, not even when I’ve been running my ultras.

Looking back I can see why I was tired as I’d given myself a kick up the butt last week and ramped up my training schedule as the physio had given me the thumbs up last Monday morning. So what had I done differently since then?

Tuesday morning I got up and ran 3km of hillyness with the dog around my local area, I had a work training day & dinner that night so couldn’t fit anything else into the agenda unfortunately.

Wednesday I got up early and took the dog for a 3km power walk around the block, then went for a 9km run at lunch out to Pyrmont wharves and back.

Thursday I got up early again and took the dog for a 3km power walk around the block, then decided that I would try a new class at the gym called ‘HIIT’ which stands for High Intensity Interval Training. HIIT was a lot of fun but it was also very high intensity, which meant that I was knackered and dripping with sweat by the end of the class. I knew right then that I would be sore for a few days.

Friday morning i got up and took the dog for another 3km power walk around the hilly block, then decided that I would skip my lunch run as I was feeling very tired from the HIIT session the day before.

Saturday morning I got up early and trained my client Amanda with a Boxing session, then headed over to a friends place to go for a run with Kristy and her hubby Nigel. We snuck in about 13km of trails through the Royal National Park near home and I felt a little sore in the muscles but generally pretty good. So we had a cheese and ham croissant for brekkie to celebrate.

Sunday I got up early and drove to St Ives to meet up with my Oxfam crew for a 1hr run and then we would meet up with the Trailblazers for an additional 1.5 hour run. This is where I came undone. I didn’t feel too bad for the first hour, but as soon as I started the session with the bigger group I knew it was going to be a struggle, and I ended up turning back early with another 2 runners who had to be back for other reasons (like work). I was getting pain in the arch of my foot & I just felt sore all over. I felt bad for slowing the other 2 runners down as they had to wait for me on several occasions when I walked, but luckily one of them was my good friend (& fellow Oxfam team member) Emma and she helped keep me going.

I got back to the cars, got warm & chatted to the runners as they were coming back then headed home for brunch & a snooze on the couch, I felt exhausted.

Time to rest and recover 🙂

STOCK 13/09/05

Extra. Extra. Read all about it.

So what’s the new goss I hear you say. What new races have I signed up for to keep me entertained for the rest of 2014……?

Firstly, I went to the physio on Monday after doing the half marathon last weekend and he was very impressed at the lack of pain, inflammation or anything of a negative effect so has given me permission to start being AWESOME again. Which means that I can plan some more big races for the res of the year.

So what did i register for first? The M7 Marathon at the end of July. The M7 Marathon was my first marathon in 2013 and it was now going to be my second marathon. I know quite a lot of people doing the M7 this year too so it will be lovely knowing there smiling faces are out on the course too and hopefully i’ll get to see them at the finish line too.

And what else have I signed up for? Not another 100km I hear you say! But yes, I was asked by my good mate Emma to join her team for the Oxfam Trailwalker in August and i’m very excited about this opportunity. The teams have lots of weekend day and night training runs planned as we plan to run the course (not walk) and aim to complete it within 20 hours.

How exciting is that – woohoo!! 😀

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Dream. Believe. Create. Succeed.

I grew up looking at those 4 words everyday, first thing when i opened my eyes they were there on my built-in cupboard door and I think they’re finally sunk in. I wrote those words down one day when I was a teenager feeling really bummed about whatever had gone wrong with my life at that point, I wish I could remember what it was….and so I’m sharing these words with you now as I recently shared them with a friend of mine called Scott and he thought they were great too.

Dream big and if it sounds scary then it’s probably a good thing!

Believe in yourself that you can work hard and achieve the dream.

Create a lifestyle and habits that support your dream.

Succeed by making sacrifices and never doubting yourself for a minute!

Mt Solitary Dream Beieve Create Succeed

Happy Running 😀