Ben Moreau – Feeling Like an Athlete Again

It’s taken a while but I’m starting to feel like an athlete again. I always take two measures from my training – how comfortable I feel on longer runs, and how well I can push myself in intense sessions. Once both of these come together and I can maintain it a reasonably high training volume, I know I’m fit and going to run well. The past few weeks both these elements have been sub-par, but I’ve really noticed how bad I’ve felt in sessions. I haven’t been able to recover mid-session, and have had to either pull the plug or drop the pace considerably. This week the sessions have started to feel better, and also the longer runs have felt much more comfortable.

1653642_780932431935442_112604765_nI think racing a 5k last week may have really made a difference to how I’ve felt this week. I have often noticed that when I’m coming back form a break that a hard race is the best thing to move me on in training. Even though the race itself wasn’t anywhere near my best, I have immediately felt better in training. I guess you could go down the ‘central governor’ route for this – basically you re-set your body’s level of ‘intense effort’. Even though I am pushing hard in training, it’s never the same as a hard race and so my brain may perceive the same effort before and after a race as different, as clearly my fitness won’t have changed that quickly (although 7-10 days down the line I’ll see benefits).

While this may be seen as a fairly artificial change, it’s beneficial psychologically, giving me good confidence and making me more positive towards my training. If the end result is that I can train harder and better, then I think racing on the road back to fitness is a useful thing to incorporate.

Sunday – 2 hours steady at 6.35/mile. Felt pretty knackered in last 30 mins, probably from the race the previous evening. (19)

Monday – 66 mins steady. Felt pretty good and comfortable – often get this after a race! 6.35/mile (10)

Tuesday – AM – 38 mins easy (5.5)

PM – 10 x 1150m Grass loop at Centennial Park in 3.24-3.29. Nipper got away from me in last 3 reps or so but felt better and a decent volume done. Much more in control than I have been feeling. (12.5)

Wednesday  – 91 mins steady in the monsoons with Dave Byrne. Felt pretty good. 6.32/mile (14)

Thursday – AM – 38 mins easy (5.5)

PM – 60 mins with 30 mins tempo around the white fence. Not sure of pace but around 3.10-3.15\km average. 5.39/mile overall (10.5)

Friday – 52 mins easy. Felt quite tired, probably due to last few days and the first really full week for a while. 7.08/mile (7)

Saturday – AM – 6x2mins off 1 min float around white fence. 3.03/km average for 5.92km. Nipper was about 50m ahead and got away in 2nd half. A bit better again. 6km is my best for this session so not too far off (10.5)

PM – 35 mins easy (5)

100.5 miles. A solid week. Felt better since the race last week and starting to feel things come together. The longer runs feel good, but I just need the sessions to lift a bit further.