Tuesday, 25 February 2014

The year ahead beckons


Training routes and training plans, to my way of thinking, need to be flexible.

When runners, especially the elderly, set off on their training runs they don't know, they cannot predict, how they are going to feel after half an hour, or an hour, or two hours. There are simply too many variables.

And so, being on the wrong side of 65, I tend to choose routes with flexibility built in. Somedays I might want to go harder and/or for longer. Other days I might need to cut the run short. Sometimes I'll have a full rucksack. Other times I'll carry only my tram ticket. That's to get back from wherever I end up.

On the map below, the red line is a 10 kms recommended route. The yellow lines are roads. The white lines are generally forest paths rather than broad tracks.

Hermannskogel is one of my favourite areas for training due to the undulating nature of the course, the variety of underfoot terrain and the absence of traffic.

I can easily pass a couple hours in these woods in the blink of an eyelid as it seems.

The red track is the usual option - the white paths are good too!

Watch for mountain bikers - check over the shoulder! 

The main trails are well signed

Streamlined cap - a breezy section!

Several paths to the summit - this one the steepest

Summit and the highest building in Vienna 

An apple juice spritzer here to keep me going 

In the Vienna Woods, of which this is only a tiny part, there are 9,000 kms of runnable trails and 5,000 kms of mountain bike routes. We who live in the area are most fortunate.

Sometimes on a run I see more squirrels than people. And I can always stop at a woodland hostelry, and often do, for a bowl of soup or a mug of coffee, and then I run on like a man with new legs.

The year ahead beckons. I will soon be in these woods again!


Sunday, 23 February 2014

42nd Winter Series Vienna Cricket & Football Club Cross Country


The KTM drone watches over the athletes

Race officials in front of the football stadium 

Club celebrates 120 years in 2014 

 From l. to r. Williams, Plank and Kapp

centre: Lemawork Ketema (new record for 9.35kms)

Below are some details from this morning's 9.35 kms cross country race, the 4th and final race of the 42nd winter series, held at the Vienna Cricket and Football Club. The day was bright and blustery.

I opted for warm tracksters but after only 3 of the 10 laps I regretted the choice. I was too warm!

After the race I checked the  thermometer on the clubhouse wall, It  showed 18C.  And that was in the shade!

There were just 3 runners in the male over 60's category. And as I was the eldest by a long chalk I expected to finish 3rd. I was not to be disappointed.

Ethiopian runner Lemawaork Ketema broke the track record. But he was not only star on show.

Dorothea Grolig, 15 seconds behind me, was in former times an Austrian International and Olympic athlete in race walking events and is listed 8th in the 2012 World Rankings for her age category over the 20 kms distance.

1 - L Ketema (Ethiopia) 29:26 (CR)
2- A Sungi (UAB Athletics) M40 32:04
3- M Bock (ASK├ľ Breitenau) 32:06
14- N Plank (NCB Tri-Team) 1M60 40:56
20- J Kapp (Vienna Cricket) 2M60 49:08
21- G Williams (Clayton H) 3M60 52:40
22- D Grolig (o.V.) 1F60 52:55

23 ran (incl. 3 ladies)