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Archive for September, 2014

5k race review

Posted by thepeteplan on September 21, 2014

With a cold having taken hold this was always going to be a tough 5k race. I thought about the race plan on the drive to Sussex. This was always going to be a time trial more than a race, with the objective of setting a time that would adequately reflect 8 weeks of solid focused training aiming at this 5km row. My ultimate target was to break 17mins, but with a season’s best of 17:12, and feeling not the best, I decided that I wanted to make sure of breaking 17:10.

So the plan was to go out for the usual 7 hard strokes, settle over the next 10 strokes, then just hit 1:43s and 1:44s and see where that put me with 2km to go. This was always going to be the tell tail point. If I feel good with 2km to go I can push on and take a good margin off the average split, but if I don’t feel good I want to be in a position where I can maintain pace and still achieve a good time.

After a good start I settled to pulling 1:43’s after around 150m, and this saw me pass the 500m mark well ahead of target at 1:41.1. Pulling mostly 1:43s for the next 1000m took me through the 4000m to go point at 1:42.1 average pace, and through 3500m to go at 1:42.5. This is an important point for me in a 5km time trial as it is the half way point to the big marker of 2km to go. I was working hard at this point, harder than I would like to be for the pace, so it was going to have to be about getting to the 2km to go point without losing too much ground. I was nicely ahead of target, with an aim of hitting 2km to go at 1:43.0 to give me the chance of a sub17 on a good day. From this point I was pulling more 1:44s than 1:43s, and went through 3000m to go at 1:42.8, the halfway mark at 1:42.9, and finally reached 2000m to go just about on target with an average split of 1:43.1.

The way I was feeling at this stage holding pace seemed like a tough task, never mind a big increase in pace to try to keep any outside hope of the sub17. So the next 1500m became about damage limitation. Hold the same pace and don’t let the average split slip too far. 1:43.2 at 1500m to go, slipping to 1:43.3 at 1000m to go, and pulling slightly back to 1:43.2 at 500m to go. At this point I knew I could find enough at the end to dip under 17:10, so it was just about picking the right time to step the pace up. 1:43s and a few 1:42s held the average pace through 300m to go, 250m to go, and ready to make the push in the final 200m. A good push over the final 200m saw the average split drop 0.1 about every 50m, and drop to 1:42.8 on the final stroke.

A really hard effort and not a time I would have wanted to settle for even a week ago. But in the circumstances a time I am very happy with.

5000m = 17:08.7 / 1:42.8 / 30
500m splits:
1:41.1 / 31
1:43.2 / 30
1:43.3 / 30
1:43.7 / 29
1:43.5 / 30
1:43.7 / 30
1:43.8 / 29
1:43.7 / 30
1:43.0 / 30
1:39.7 / 31


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The eve of the race

Posted by thepeteplan on September 19, 2014

An up and down final 2 weeks into the 5km race day tomorrow, with only the race tomorrow telling whether it has ended on a down. The last stretch into the race began with a special CTC distance for this month, in honour of one of our fellow indoor rowers Joan Van Blom who has been suffering with a brain tumour. The distance of 7684m is to commemorate Joan’s Olympic rowing medals won at the 1976 and 1984 games. A tough row on an off day, but a good solid pace non the less.

8th September:

7684m = 26:59.3 / 1:45.3 / 29

9th September: REST

The plan for the second core session of last week was for a slightly less intense session. 3 x 2500m with a target of the pace of the CTC effort for the first 2 reps then a quicker final rep. The plan here was not to push too hard in the final 2 weeks to ensure getting to race day fresh and well. More on that later.

10th September:

3 x 2500m / 3:30 rest = 26:00.0 / 1:44.0 / 29
8:42.8 / 1:44.5 / 29
8:42.4 / 1:44.4 / 29
8:34.8 / 1:42.9 / 30

This session felt good, but I felt particularly tired the next day and cut the steady distance short to just 6km.

11th September:

6km = 1:53.5 / 24

A week before race day and time for my favourite 5k race predictor session the 6 x 1k / 1min rest. The target from the previous attempt was 1:41.6, so the plan was to start just below this and push the final rep. A great session, and one that should point to a sub 17 for the 5k.

12th September:

6 x 1k / 1min rest:
1:41.4 / 31
1:41.4 / 31
1:41.4 / 31
1:41.3 / 31
1:41.3 / 31
1:39.0 / 32

6000m = 20:12.1 / 1:41.0 / 31

13th September: REST

14th September: REST

Two days rest, then a session just to stay sharp in the final week. 500m reps with a minutes rest, so shorter reps than any of the prep sessions over the past 2 months. I perhaps pushed the final 4 reps too quickly in this session and hit my immune system a little, because it has been downhill since here.

10 x 500m / 1min rest
5000m = 16:20.7 / 1:38.0 / 32

15th September:

30mins = 7911m / 1:53.7 / 24

16th September: REST

17th September:

Wednesday was scheduled as a moderate 30mins with a target pace of 1:48-1:50. It all went well with good intentions until 5mins to go. It seemed like a good idea at the time to push out the final 5mins at 5km pace for a confidence booster. It was a good confidence boost at the time, but I regretted it the next morning.

30mins = 8304m / 1:48.3 / 26
5min splits:
1:49.8 / 26
1:49.7 / 26
1:49.8 / 26
1:49.4 / 26
1:49.8 / 26
1:42.1 / 30

I woke Thursday morning with a sore throat, and have rested since. The sore throat is still there, but so far has not developed into anything else. Fingers crossed for tomorrow and feeling good on the start line. The ultimate target is still for sub 17 or die trying, but in reality the way I feel today I will be happy with anything under 17:10.

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End of Week 6

Posted by thepeteplan on September 7, 2014

Six weeks now completed, and just 2 weeks to go until the 5km race and target. The last core session of this week was a repeat of the 8 x 750m reps I had done earlier in the programme, and a score of 1:40.4 to beat. I wasn’t confident on this one, it’s a tough session, so I just went with a standard Pete Plan pacing strategy. So with a 1:40.4 average from last time I start off on exactly 1:40.4 from the first rep. A slight negative split over the first 7 reps still allowed for a good quick last rep.

6th September:

8 x 750m / 1min rest = 20:01.2 / 1:40.1 / 31
1:40.4 / 31
1:40.4 / 31
1:40.3 / 31
1:40.3 / 31
1:40.3 / 31
1:40.3 / 31
1:40.2 / 32
1:38.4 / 33

7th September:

A nice steady 10km row to finish the week off, and aid recovery before Week 7 begins tomorrow.

10k = 37:43.9 / 1:53.1 / 24

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2 weeks till (5k) race day

Posted by thepeteplan on September 6, 2014

I started this week off with a few days away in the Netherlands for work. Through luck rather than judgement (as it was the only choice) the hotel had a gym with a lone Model D erg. Unfortunately, like most hotel gyms, it was a poorly maintained erg in a badly ventilated gym. It was better than nothing though. Sunday was a long day – drive to work, meet a colleague and swap to a work car, then drive from there to Folkstone, through the channel tunnel, pass through France, drive the width of Belgium then most of the length of the Netherlands to get to the final destination. Just time to squeeze in a steady 30mins before dinner.

31st August: (Hotel gym Netherlands)

30mins = 8014m / 1:52.3 / 24

Monday was a long working day that involved very little in the way of food or drink. Bad planning, and not conducive to training. So just a short and slow session pre dinner.

1st September: (Hotel gym Netherlands)

5k = 1:53.9 / 24

Tuesday was the long drive back for the return journey home via work.

2nd September: REST (Travel back from Netherlands)

It is easy when other factors get in the way of your training regime to just do easy sessions for a while. It you put in the hard core sessions during these periods you will continue to make progress though, so during periods of lower volume keep the quality of the sessions high, don’t take the easy route. The last 3 x 2k session to beat included two 6:49s and a 6:45, so I went into this session aiming to beat the previous score rep for rep.

3rd September:

3 x 2k / 5min rest:
6:48.9 / 1:42.2 / 30
6:48.9 / 1:42.2 / 31
6:43.2 / 1:40.8 / 32

6k = 20:20.9 / 1:41.7 / 31

4th September: REST

Yesterday it was the hard distance piece of the week. Back to the 6k this time, and a 20:57.0 to beat from 3 weeks ago. Last time on the 6k the targets were all splits under 1:46 and the final average under 1:45, each was moved on by a second this time.

5th September:

6k = 20:46.6 / 1:43.8 / 29
750m splits:
1:43.4 / 30
1:44.8 / 29
1:44.8 / 29
1:44.9 / 29
1:44.8 / 29
1:44.5 / 29
1:44.0 / 29
1:39.6 / 31

Only 5 weeks ago it was a maximal 5k effort to dip under 1:45.0. Now I have achieved a 1:45.0 for 30mins (over 8500m), a 6k at 1:43.8, and on a bad day a 5k at 1:43.2. Things are certainly moving in the right direction.

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