Race Report – Hypothermic Half and Training Update

Late last month Nicola ran a half marathon “race” as part of our marathon training for Ottawa. Since the training is a long haul and sometimes you need a reward in the middle we decided to run the Hypothermic half in Saint John. We wanted a bit of swag, a medal and a night out of town…even though SJ is only an hour away.

We lucked out in a big way as the race day had light winds and was pretty mild for the end of February. Of the two hypothermic half marathons in New Brunswick held every year, SJ always has better weather. Of course you pay for it with the difficulty of the course as SJ is very hilly.

The Race

Now, we were not in any type of a hurry so when everyone else left us in the dust we were content to just run our slow pace and enjoy the day. We, however, were not in the mindset to run all of the hills; call it fatigue, call it rebellion, call it denial…whatever….we were not ready so we ended up walking a lot of the hills.

At the second water station we met a couple of our very good friends, Rod and Jo, shared a few laughs, hugs then we were on our way again. We were both wishing that we could have met them at every station as the burst of energy was awesome.


In the end we finished with a very slow time but honestly, based on our training, we were right where we should have been; the run just felt like a lot more work than it should have been. We did manage to arrive a few short minutes after the brunch buffet had started so we didn’t have to wait around to get fed, always a bonus to me.



I think the photo of us after the race tell a story, we were both tired, physically but also mentally, which would be a theme for the next month up to now.





Our training since the half marathon has been very spotty. Both of us caught the bug going around and I got quite sick for a week, add this to a work schedule which included some weekends and we have postponed a few weekends of running. In addition, our runs during the week have also suffered. I am hopeful that as it gets warmer in combination with the later sunsets that we will get more of our intermediate runs in. Right now we are both sick once again, having caught the “boomerang” bug as it seems like a lot of people are getting sick with the same symptoms twice this winter. So, this weekend, which was supposed to be 30km, has been moved to next weekend. I managed to get 27km in last weekend and Nicola 22km, so we are not far off, it just sometimes feels like we are missing too many long runs.

Which is why I schedule us for a 16 week training plan. First, we are both masters runners, so we need more time to recover, second, the winter is a hard time to train, runs get missed, third, illness can pop in and derail your plans so it’s best to put buffers into your plan. Some may argue that such a long training cycle causes the fatigue to which I would say to each their own. This cycle has been fraught with numerous speed bumps and the longer cycle has allowed us to take breaks when we have needed them. I am not worried as it is the end of March and we will be running 30km, so with almost 2 months before our race we are in good shape.

I do hope that your training has been going along smoothly and if it hasn’t that you aren’t panicking about where you are or where you need to be, stay the course and follow your training and if you must deviate, make smart decisions.


One Foot in Front of the Other


exercise week in review

Another week closer to my first race and to my goal race, this week I ran 3 times, twice outside and the other in the gym plus I cross-trained twice. Thankfully no injuries to speak of but I do have either a callous or blister under my forefoot on my right foot but it doesn’t bother me when I run so…shrug.

Monday.. Rode the stationary cycle for 19.1 km at level 5.

Tuesday.. Ran outside for just over 10 km.

Thursday.. I ran for 8.50 km, 2 km warm up then 2 X (3 km at ~5:10 min/km) followed by 5 minute cool down. I was scheduled to run 3 intervals but I was a bit tired so I didn’t run the third and risk injury.

Saturday.. Rowed for 5.5 km at the gym at level 8.

Sunday.. Ran 14.4 km outside, the last 4 km I ran a series of 60 second surges at around 5:00 min/km followed by 5 minutes of running until finished.

Once again a solid week, a hot epsom salt bath tonight and some stretching as once again another week of training starts.

Monthly totals so far: 160 km of running, 71 km of cycling and 10 km of rowing.

I hope that you had a solid week of training and/or racing and good luck this week.

Once foot in front of the other


exercise week in review

I’ve been reading the book by the people at Runner’s World called “Run less, run faster”. In it they preach 3 runs a week with 2 days of low impact cross training and strength training every once and while. It very much resembles the plan that I am following right now except that the long runs occur at a higher pace. I am not planning to modify my plan at this point save for the addition of a rowing cross training session on Friday’s after work.

On to the week!

It was a good week all-in-all,

I hopped on the stationary cycle on Monday for 17.7 km.

Tuesday I ran 8.4 km which consisted of a 2 km warm-up, then 8 X 400 m at ~5:00 min/km, then a 9th at 4:54 and the 10th at 4:50, followed by a 5 minute cool down, at 1% incline.

Wednesday I enjoyed an hour massage.

Thursday I ran 12.30 km which included a 2 km warm-up then 3 X 3(1.6 km at ~5:30 min/km, 1.6 km at ~5:00 min/km) then 1 minute cool down, at 1% incline.

Friday I rowed for 4.5 km for 25 minutes.

Sunday I ran ~17 km for my LSD, which included a jaunt up Forest Hill road and braving 50 km/h gusts….but oddly I felt really great because my phone conked out after 5 km and I ran the rest by feel, it’s liberating at times to run sans timing!

So a total of 17.7 km cycling, 4.5 km rowing and ~38 km for the week. The great news is that my legs were not tired at all this week.

I hope that you had a great week of training and that this week brings more of the same.



One foot in front of the other

Training Week in Review

Three runs again this week, with two occurring outside and one on the treadmill. Sadly I didn’t get to any cross-training this week.

Monday: 35 minutes of yoga.

Tuesday: an hour on the treadmill of a 2 kilometre warm-up, 4 X1.6 km intervals at my 10 km pace of ~5:00 minutes/km…mistakenly I ran the first interval at almost a ~4:40 minutes/kilometre pace which caused me to take a 30 second pause halfway through my third and fourth intervals. I walked for 90 seconds, 100 seconds, 110 seconds then 120 seconds between intervals…then finished with a 1.6 kilometre cool down.

Wednesday: one hour massage!

Thursday: ran outside in a snowstorm for a little over 8 kilometres at a ~6:43 minute/kilometre pace.

Saturday: 20 minutes of yoga.

Sunday: 16 km LSD run at a ~6:52 minute/kilometre pace. It was slushy, slippery and I was a bit tired but it was good to get the distance in as it was the furthest I’ve run since last October.

Next week, 16 km LSD next weekend, hills for one run and a combo pace workout, plus a couple of days of yoga as I found two yoga DVD’s for very cheap at Target 😉

I hope that you are feeling good and strong.

One foot in front of the other.


exercise week in review

Finally a good week of running and cross training! The winter hasn’t really affected me too much as I became accustomed to the treadmill last year during the winter. Varied workouts and varied cross-training I hope will lead to improved results.

Monday: Cross training, 5 km on the rowing machine and 10 km on the stationary cycle.

Tuesday: Approximately 7.8 km run in total, 7 km at ~5:40 min/km then 4X20 strides with a peak pace of ~4:35 min/km for 10 seconds each segment. A cool down period of 90 seconds at ~ 6:00 min/km occurred between each segment.

Wednesday: Yoga for 20 minutes.

Thursday: Approximately 9 km total, 3 km warm-up, 5 km at projected half-marathon pace in Vancouver of 5:10 min/km, 1km cool down.

Saturday: ran twice, once for 5k at 6:19 min/km pace outside in the freezing, freezing cold with my girlfriend, then for another 8 km at 6:24 min/km outside once again in the afternoon. In the evening i snowshoed 4 km with my girlfriend and other friends.

Overall a much better week and much more indicative of how things should progress. Likely I’ll toss in another cross-training day when I feel motivated and hopefully add another day of yoga…hmm I should do some this evening..stay tuned!

Have a great week!

One foot in front of the other.