Saturday, 29 April 2017

Final Countdown - 8 days to go!

Map of this afternoon's little outing:

Today's 21 km training run
  (mixed surface / hilly terrain) 
That's the last training run in the bag. Between now and 7th May a couple of easy jogs of 30 minutes or so should get me to the start line feeling as fit as a fiddle. I'm hoping I can once again reach the 12 kms point before the Catcher Car sweeps me up! To win this race, if you're a male athlete, you must be able to run for about 80 kms before the Catcher Car gets you. Now that really takes some doing!

- Wings for Life World Run - Excitement in the air! -

In just a few days 150,000 runners from around the globe will line up at 33 locations in many countries, and a lot of them in different time zones. 

It's all to raise money for spinal cord research, a cause dear to my heart. And so I will be there, as I was last year for the start in Vienna. 

I can hardly wait. 

Meanwhile, today will see my final 2 hour training run. It's all going to plan. 

I think I'm flying! For my age, that is :)

2016 - I'm somewhere in the middle of this lot! 

Wings for Life World Run -
Front Page News! 

Tuesday, 25 April 2017

Wings for Life World Run 2017

Just had an official email confirming my entry. It'll be my second year in the race. When I've finished I'll still have time to get home and watch the final stages on the internet platform Red Bull TV. The winner, who is the last one left running in the whole world, will have to run at least 80 kms. Last year the men's winner was from Italy and the women's was in Japan. The Japanese woman ran in the dark, as all the worldwide races in 33 countries start at at exactly the same time. Contestants in other countries where there is no official race can still compete by downloading the Wings for Life App.

Monday, 24 April 2017

The Second Long Run

The bus took me from the railway station at Heiligenstadt to my starting point about halfway up the first hill. Ströck (the logo on the horse's neck) is the name of a bakery. They make good bread.

After 10 minutes of gentle uphill running I was on the desired path.

The Vienna Woods is a working forest. There's always something to do. After the recent storms many trees have to be cleared from the paths.

This path leads to the first summit of Hermann's Kogel.  At 542 mtrs it's the highest point within the Vienna boundary.

A glimpse of the city below. The faint blue stripe to the left of centre is the Danube river.

The summit and the old Habsburg Tower nowadays adorned with modern electronics.

On the way to the next hilltop a fallen tree blocks my chosen path. I make a small diversion.

I meet two Japanese ladies. They are photographing a pond. This gives me an idea. They agreed to take my photo.

Ascending the Hameau which has a small plateau on top (464 mtrs) and an information board.  There are paths and trails in many directions. I take one going north-east.

Ten minutes short of 3 hours, with a 10 minute stop for cake and coffee, I reach my destination.

The distance is not relevant. I have no way of recording it, and anyway with my new training schedule it's time on my feet that really matters.

All in all it was a fine way to spend a Monday morning, and it satisfactorily brings to an end the second week of my new training system  (which is outlined in one of the posts below).

Saturday, 15 April 2017

Springing into Action!

My weekly training plan for 2017 is now taking shape:

Day 1 -
Day 2 - 1 hour run
Day 3 -
Day 4 - 3 hour run (increasing 4 hour run)*
Day 5 -
Day 6 -
Day 7 - 2 hour run

The venue for the long run will normally be the Lainzer Tiergarten on the outskirts of Vienna or a similar area elsewhere - e.g. the Lobau.

The short and medium runs will normally be in the Vienna Woods. The running surface will be mostly off-road: woodland paths, forest trails, lakeside paths, parkland etc..

The purpose of the new training plan is to build a solid fitness base for 2018, a year  which I hope will be a memorable year featuring some exciting running challenges.

Here, shown with arrowed black dashes, is an approximately 20 km route almost exclusively in the Lainzer Tiergarten. It starts and finishes at the Hutteldorf Railway Station (Line S45).

*Long Run includes a refreshment stop. Hermes Villa is convenient for Apple Strudel and Coffee!

Update (1)

The 2 hour medium length run was ticked off on the 17th.

It was about 18 kms (12 laps) over meadows and paths. (Türkenschanz Park near Gersthof S45 Line).

Showers - quite heavy.

Next week - same basic plan: 1 x Short, 1 x Long, 1 x Medium.

Update (2)

I had to dig out my balaclava and gloves for my 1 hour short run on the 19th over local parkland braving a stiff breeze and snow flurries!

Conditions were a bit fresh today to use a well worn Pennine understatement.  

Update (3)

On the 21st I tackled my medium run (2 hrs) in Vienna Woods on snowy and muddy trails, some flowing like streams, others  littered with broken branches and uprooted trees. It was an enjoyable and wet footed experience. The sun was shining and I only saw one other runner. We exchanged knowing smiles! The next run, after two recovery days, will be the weekly long run (3 hours). And so it goes . . .


The city's outdoor swimming pools will be opening in a couple of weeks. Mostly on or about 1st May.