Monday, 30 June 2008


Posted by speedygeoff on Monday, June 30, 2008 with 1 comment

My training progress
last week’s target: 100k
achieved: 100k
year 2008 total to date: 2252k in 26 weeks
this week's target: 100k including a 1500m race on Sunday
weight: 63kg ►◄
song of the week: "Readyfuels", by Anberlin, from "Blueprints for the Black Market".

"We’re running hard tonight.
And it feels so good!
You're holding on ...
And it feels so right.


So it's tax time, 30 June already. Half the year has flown. Was it a taxing run at Mt Ainslie yesterday? No – the course was great, there were only a few rocky bits, and the weather was perfect.

Speedygeese at the ACT Masters Athletics monthly handicaps yesterday:
Mount Ainslie 9.3k
2 Adam Robinson M35 51:11 53.7% Gold
5 Miranda Rawlinson W55 53:48 69.9 Bronze
16 Colin Farlow M45 36:45 82.9
26 Bronwyn Calver W35 46:28 69.0
27 Kathy Southgate W50 38:04 96.1 !!!
33 Rod Lynch M45 37:26 82.3
43 Christopher Lang M55 51:22 65.1
53 Rae Palmer W60 49:10 81.8
71 Mick Horan M45 42:35 72.4
72 Alan Duus M60 50:13 69.1
78 Margaret McSpadden W60 60:24 66.6
84 Peter Hogan M60 54:14 63.8
85 Mick Charlton M55 56:12 58.9
91 Tony Booth M70 55:13 69.6
94 Caroline Campbell W65 56:35 75.2
95 Charmaine Knobel W55 54:02 70.4
101 finishers

Mount Ainslie 4.5k
8 Gary Bowen M50 18:59 76.6% Bronze
12 Cathy Montalto W55 22:00 78.7
17 Geoff Moore M60 18:14 86.0
22 Amanda Walker W40 20:24 72.8
28 Ken White M50 18:39 80.0
38 Katie Forestier W40 18:54 79.6
44 Neil Boden M55 21:19 71.8
64 Annette Sugden W45 25:51 59.3
69 finishers

I didn’t feel I was going very fast, but 86% for me is excellent. However it pales into insignificance compared with Southy’s 96%! These percentages are all relative to the world age standard!

Maria, Helen, and Charlie weren't running at Mt Ainslie, but here they are at Cooleman Ridge two weeks ago.

Sunday, 29 June 2008

There's a Place

Posted by speedygeoff on Sunday, June 29, 2008 with 4 comments
First place, to be precise, for Adam Robinson in today's Thomas Series run, for the second time I am told; and third place for Miranda in the same handicapped race.

Third place too for Gary in the Frylink Series race.

A place too on the ACTMA committee for Miranda, newly elected Secretary. Paul Archer is the new Treasurer.

Cross Country - who we raced

Start of the 8k cross country championships. Tony (long sleeves) and I (red shoes) are in the foreground.

Ewen in the 12k

Chasing Jim

Mick in a tactical race in the 12k

Not that Ewen's chase wasn't tactical as well.

Saturday, 28 June 2008

Dear Prudence

Posted by speedygeoff on Saturday, June 28, 2008 with 5 comments
Tomorrow morning 9am is the June monthly handicap at Mt Ainslie. I hope more photos are taken; I have made use of quite a few of John Kennedy's Oakey Hill photos!

Prudence, Kathy S, Rachelle, Pat, Jill and Rod at Oakey Hill last month

If all goes as expected Miranda will be Secretary after tomorrow. I wish her well; last time I was on Main Committee, Prudence was President and I was Vice-President and it was a lot of work! Fortunately "everything" can be delegated.

How Thursday went
Before training at Dickson I ran up to Ainslie-Majura: it is only a short distance to the ridge and the start of the Majura Pines; I will make this a regular run from mid-July. I tried to take the shortest route back, to see how far it was, but "got lost": the dip at the bottom of the following picture was supposed to be a straight line!

Training were Matthew, Bronwyn, Neil, Al, Jodi & Colin running 5 x 600 on 6 minutes; David, Ruth, Rachelle and I jogging around.

I ran the same 600m interval session on Friday at Stromlo and averaged 2:21. I was feeling exceedingly sluggish. Until I got into it properly. Miranda kept me honest.

Both sessions were handicapped starts so that the faster runners started later.

It is still June! Bring on Spring!

Beatles Titles
There are plenty more; I won't run out for a long time yet. Let's see how creative we can be with the more "difficult" ones? "Dear Prudence" for example wasn't a problem, was it?

won't you come out and play
it's a brand new day

Friday, 27 June 2008

Ask Me Why

Posted by speedygeoff on Friday, June 27, 2008 with No comments
37 (No expense spared. Cut out cardboard castles and coconuts)

“Outdated Imperialist Dogma”!
Why? This follows up my son turning 37. And parodies (both sides of) conflicting world-views.

ACT Masters
Read the latest (July) Vetrunner. Then please contact me with any and all thoughts about our name change. In particular I would like to collect any good reasons for staying with "Veterans". Don't let those who have already spoken speak for you, the arguments put forward are less than convincing! So far. As you will see.

I also need to monitor whether there is a groundswell of opinion for or against "Masters". If you don't tell me now, don't grumble later on about not being asked!

If you read Vetrunner and still don't know why we want to be Masters, ask me why. I am really very approachable.

Banned for four matches.
'Aint serious sport strange? "England one-day captain Paul Collingwood has been banned for four matches after his side failed to bowl their overs in the required time in Wednesday's one-day international against New Zealand." What next, a jail term? Don't ask me why sport has got to this.

Let's relax and enjoy it. I like Allrounder's motto: "Jack of all, Master of none". Yet we enjoy "mastering" our sport, as best we can, with the help of those around us. And we are masters of our sport in comparison with those who are "Jack of no trades". We enjoy becoming skilled athletes, via friendly competition and social interaction. Now that's all good!

Rod, Colin, Geoff S & Peter at Oakey Hill. In the background you can see Kent, the M60 cross country champion, in the white cap. All these Oakey Hill photos are by John Kennedy (which is why he isn't in them!)

Thursday, 26 June 2008

Carry That Weight

Posted by speedygeoff on Thursday, June 26, 2008 with 1 comment

Ideal weight. Margaret running at Oakey Hill.

In response to a Cbox comment: if you want to read or write comments on posts in this blog, please wait and let the whole page load before you open up comments. Otherwise all page loading abends and you will have to start again by refreshing the page. It's a fault in the way I have implemented in-line comments. I guess.

I am having fun making friends on Facebook. I like Facebook now because there are short music pages for fans of various singers and bands, some of which even have samples of their music or links to video clips. Another thing I like is you can chat to friends when you are both on-line. Lots of my friends are on facebook. I also have a few photos up there and will add some more if/when I have time.

After yesterday's post where I confessed to having been 13kg heavier than I am now, I wonder if I should be getting my weight lower than its present 63kg? No, not right now, because (a) it is too cold at this time of year! I should wait for summer when it is easier to lose weight. (b) I am doing two gym sessions a week which should be building muscle, and c) no way am I going to restrict my diet at any time. I will keep on running long and if my weight drops a kg or two over the next few months, so be it.

By the way, for runners who need to lose weight, a drop of any more than 2kg in a month is not healthy.

After my mention of kangaroos on Tuesday, I ran around the trails behind the Pinnacle and saw only four kangaroos when in the past there have been oodles of them. Noticing the signs warning that poison had been laid for rabbits, and to keep dogs well away, I wondered if "accidentally" the kangaroos were being poisoned too? I have never seen so few around there.

Makes you wonder ...

Wednesday, 25 June 2008

This Boy

Posted by speedygeoff on Wednesday, June 25, 2008 with 3 comments
BBQ Stakes today: cold and windy but sunny.
me 25:21
Roger 26:08
Helen 27:45

Strewth tagged me:
How would you describe your running ten years ago?
I wouldn’t. Oh yes, ten years ago, I remember it well. I couldn’t run at all between May and September 1998, and as a new M50 I put on 18 kg in weight in that short time, going up from 58 kg to 76 kg. I have not fully recovered from that set-back. I’m so glad you asked!

What is your best and worst run/race experience?
Best would be winning the Canberra Marathon in 1978 in a new ACT open record. Although close would come winning the combined schools mile in 1965 for Adelaide Boys High School in front of the whole school and all the colleges at Adelaide Oval.

The worst I can think of – and I don’t keep a record of some things - might be when I interrupted a family holiday in Streaky Bay (South Australia near Ceduna) so that I could travel to Brisbane for a National Cross Country race because NSW had picked me as a reserve, only to finish dead last on a miserable waterlogged course. I did run other National Cross Country races with average results, but never that terrible.

Why do you Run?
I am still not dead therefore I run. I run because I love the freedom of running. When I was seven years old I spent most of 1955 in bed. Six months of not even being allowed to get out of bed is frustrating and taught me patience and determination at the same time. And being sick again two years and again twelve years later with the same illness, reinforced in me this determination to be an overcomer. I run because I was so close to dying back then, and because I treat every day as a new day to be celebrated, every day as a bonus, because of those experiences. And debilitating illness is not somewhere I want to go to again for a while. I run therefore I am (still not dead).

What is the best or worst piece of advice you've been given about running?
Best advice I have been given: Percy Cerutty once said to me: “Soar like an Eagle”! Up until now I know how to coast like a goose; I am counting on forty more years to get to an Eagle’s heights. What a motivator!

Worst advice: Over thirty years ago, maybe thirty-five, Canberra coach Darryl Cross said to me: “Why are you still running? Why don’t you give it away?” Ha ha ha! As if! What? A motivator?

Tell us something surprising about yourself that not many people would know!
Anything? Um, ABOUT me? I’ve probably said already that I won a state wide mathematics competition in 1965. This is the same year I was the SA combined schools one mile champion. So what haven’t I said? I think I have said everything, directly or indirectly. OK, some obscure trivia. At High School and University I was a movie fan, and went to see Taylor & Burton’s “Who’s Afraid of Virginia Woolf?” at the movies, on five separate occasions, I liked it so much. Clink, clink.

Now I tag 5 friends: I choose the speedygeese who read this and don't have blogs of their own. If that's you, please, please, email me now with the answers! Hopefully at least five will.

Thanks Strewth

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Free as a Bird

Posted by speedygeoff on Tuesday, June 24, 2008 with No comments
The speedygeese were flying again around Parliament House last night - hill sprints on the western side, where night time visibility is somewhat better than any of the alternative locations. Running were Ewen, Ruth, & Caroline, who gave the hill sprints a miss but warmed up with us then ran longer, and Cathy, Christine, Colin, Emma, Gary, myself, Helen, Joel, Katie, Ken, Mick H, Neil, Rachelle & Yelena who did the hills.

Michael W, Jeni and Caroline getting trophies in the March Handicap.

Coming Events
Wednesday 12:15pm BBQ Stakes Woden. For me, another shot at running a consistent 25 minutes for a hilly 6k, and a chance to catch up with Roger, Helen & Charlie.

Saturday 1:00pm Goorooyaroo 8k Horse Park Drive (towards the Federal Highway end). An excellent course if you like long hills. It's the ACTCCC's novice championships and I will be there officiating. I will be going for a long run from there up towards Mulligans Flat ("Flat". I don't think so!), probably after the race, if you want to join me for a great nature run assuming the new Gungahlin suburbs haven't scared off all the wildlife. There are/were many different kinds of birds inhabiting this area.

Sunday 9:00am Mt Ainslie ACTMA Handicaps. I haven't run a monthly handicap since January which means I am not eligible. In the short race, as I am in group 40 along with Katie 'n Ken, I think I will just run with them and give Katie back the point I owe her. Hang on, that won't work, I won't get any points anyway! After the race there's a special meeting with speedygoose Miranda nominating as ACTMA Secretary and friend Paul Archer nominating as Treasurer. The only wildlife other than speedygeese in this area are hundreds of kangaroos, providing they haven't all been shot while no-one was looking.

Monday, 23 June 2008

I'll follow the sun

Posted by speedygeoff on Monday, June 23, 2008 with No comments
Nothing but fog out there so far today. Drippy, soggy, coldy, foggy. But the sun will be out by the time 4:30pm rocks around and Ewen and I do our pre-training warm-up run at Parliament House. See you there at 5:30pm! Or you could even join us at 4:30pm if you like, but please be on time as we don't wait around!

speedygeese placegetters in the Canada Day Fun Run
10k Females
7. Kelley Flood 43.52
9. Helen Larmour 44.12
13. Bronwyn Calver 45.20
22. Cathy Newman 47.11
Emma Adams 19:41
Ken White 20.06
Katie Forestier 20:12
Amanda Walker 21:43
Cathy Montalto 24:16

I cannot vouch for the accuracy of any of the times. Others ran and were not timed.

Kelley at Oakey Hill. She's good!

Emma last year

Katie last year

My training progress
last week’s target: 100k
achieved: 103k
year 2008 total to date: 2152k in 25 weeks
this week's target: 100k including a 1500m race on Sunday
weight: 63kg ►◄
song of the week: "Opposite Way", by Leeland, from the album “Opposite Way”.
For all these years
Doing the same old things
Hanging with the same crowd
And it’s starting to get crippling
You’ve never felt in place
And you tell yourself it’s all okay
But something’s different today
You want to run the opposite way

And it seems like you’re locked in a cage
And you need to find a way of escape
When everyone is setting the pace
It’s okay to run the opposite way

I will be seeing Leeland live in two weeks time! Yay! And Brooke Fraser too! Yay! Yay! I will be following the sun to Sydney for a week; however cold it ends up being there, at least it will be warmer than here!

This time last year I had run 2,226 km, and I am just behind that now; also I weighed 66.5kg, so I am a bit healthier now at 63kg. Also I was injured and had sore hamstrings right through until December, so it’s a brighter outlook now than it was 12 months ago.

And the days are getting longer.

Triple yay!

Sunday, 22 June 2008

A Hard Day's Night

Posted by speedygeoff on Sunday, June 22, 2008 with 5 comments

Where's the food?

I was the only one who partied on at Belluci's then ran in the championships the next day. But thanks Jeni and Maria for coming out to watch and cheer us on. Some of the speedygeese who did very well were Tony Booth in the M70s and Kathy Southgate in the W50s. Kathy was way ahead of the M60s in the 8k. Robbie Costmeyer is the only M60 who tried to go with Kathy early; I know not to. The race was two loops of 2.5k, one of 2k, and one of 1k, as I discovered a couple of minutes before the race started. The lowest point on the course, just before turning uphill into the strong wind, was exactly at the 1.5k, 4k, and 6k mark (the one spot). Kent Williams caught Robbie at 1.5k and I caught Robbie at 2.5k. After the first km I trailed Kent by 100m for the entire race; Kent might have pulled away another 20m over the last 800m. My 4k (bottom of the long hill) split was 16 minutes and my final time 33 minutes; that's more even than it looks. The other M60s: Robbie, Graham Burke, and Wayne Gregson were 400m or more behind me at the finish. Des Brown opted to run the 12k; actually I wouldn't be surprised if he simply turned up too late to run the 8k. If Des had run the 8k his time would have been a couple of minutes faster than Kent's was. No other M60 is in form at present, so what this all boils down to is that after May's half marathon and June's cross country, I am established as ACT's third best M60 runner. Moving up that "ranking" will be hard work, but that's the long term plan. I was pleased to keep 100m behind Kent in this run, and I would have caught him if I were able. But Kent will improve from here as he is probably not in top form. Des is in top form and pretty well unbeatable, for now.

Kathy broke 31 minutes!

Parties are nearly as much fun as running

Especially in such pleasant company. In this case, SpeedyJenny and veryspeedyRachelle! This is a previous party, not Friday's.

p.s. 8k result!

Place First Name Surname Club Registration Time
1 Sarah McRae WH 240 29:12
2 Jessamy Hosking SCT 175 30:42
3 Kathy Southgate SCT 182 30:55
4 Jillian Hosking SCT 212 31:18
5 Hannah Flannery SCT 266 31:33
6 Kent Williams ACTMA 2023 32:40
7 Geoff Moore ACTMA 1332 33:04
8 Susie Sprague WC 126 33:11
9 Robbie Costmeyer ACTMA 2142 34:41
10 Wayne Gregson ACTMA 2295 35:34
11 Graham Burke ACTMA 1062 35:54
12 Pam Muston WH 241 36:29
13 Miriam McCarthy WH 244 38:15
14 Ken Eynon WC 148 39:30
15 Tony Booth ACTMA 1044 40:01
16 Clive Glover ACTMA 2631 40:08
17 Bob Chapman ACTMA 1089 40:52
18 Richard Hilhorst ACTMA 4981 41:08
19 Bryan Thomas ACTMA 1458 41:31
20 Dave Hobson WH 246 43:47
21 Bryan McCarthy WH 245 45:27
22 Jill Brown ACTMA 2532 46:56
23 Col Robbie ACTMA 3931 48:52
24 Anne Young ACTMA 1520 51:16
25 Lynn Williams ACTMA 2043 51:26

Just the ACTMA members in the 12k
Bruce Graham 4841 41:22 M45
David Hosking 120 43:06 M40
Martin Fryer 145 43:16 M45
Geoff Hawke 4743 44:49 M50
Trevor Jacobs 50 45:00 M55
Geoff Monro 218 45:40 M40
Anthony Kennedy 5166 47:52 M35
Milton Valentine 2566 49:15 M55
Peter Clarke 1984 49:51 M55
Peter Cullen 3622 50:50 M45
Mick Horan 2168 52:13 M45
Bruce Wight 4065 52:32 M40
Paul Archer 4766 53:37 M55
Neville Madden 1937 53:45 M50
Ewen Thompson 200 54:14 M50
Jim White 2086 54:42 M55
Ken Smith 4823 58:08 M50
Perry Blackmore 1 59:23 M40

Saturday, 21 June 2008

Any Time At All

Posted by speedygeoff on Saturday, June 21, 2008 with 1 comment
Pat & Gary at Oakey Hill

Bricks in the backpack? Handicapped indeed!

Today's 8k & 12k cross country championships - and it's fine and sunny after all, do come out and watch! - are not part of any long term strategy, I will just have a quick sprint around the 8k course, mindful of where my M60 rivals are, any time at all is OK. This race is just a diversion.

But the High Noon meets ARE part of a long term strategy, which is to get my 3k times well down below 11 minutes, and my 5k times below 19 minutes, eventually.

I will almost certainly run the 1500m in the next one. Here's the program:
High Noon Track Meet Sunday 6 July:
12 noon 3000m
12:02pm long hurdles 200m, 400m
12:10pm 60m
12:25pm 100m
12:40pm 1500m run
12:55pm 1500m walk
1:05pm 200m
1:20pm 400m

Meanwhile, I read the news today, oh boy, are you ever fat!
Health experts say Australia is fast becoming the fattest nation on earth. New figures suggest about a quarter of Australians are classed as either overweight or obese, about the same amount as in America. Professor Simon Stewart, from Melbourne's Baker Heart Institute, will present the study's findings in Melbourne today. He says Australia's obsession with sport has made it harder for people to accept that the nation has a weight problem. "I think we need to reflect on this fact that as we send our Olympians off to the Beijing Olympics," he said. "In terms of our sporting heritage and culture, if we had a fat Olympics, we would be gold medal contenders." One in four of you are fat! And even if you are "average", average is fatter than it used to be! I dare you to move, get up and get active, and get some of that lard off your large bottoms.

Meek and Mild. As If!

I was told that in yesterday's picture I look like Jesus. I take that as a compliment.

Jesus walked everywhere. And was not fat. And told it like it was.
My hero.

Get fit not fat! Look at and be inspired by the pictures of our training group members here and below, they are fit because they run, go forth and do ye likewise. Get up and get moving, in your own time, in your own time, any time at all. Right now would be good.

Friday, 20 June 2008

No Reply

Posted by speedygeoff on Friday, June 20, 2008 with 5 comments
My son Nathan is 37 today. Happy Birthday!

Jenny and Nathan, 1971

Monty Python and the Holy Grail - script
ARTHUR: Old woman!
ARTHUR: Man. Sorry. What knights live in that castle over there?
DENNIS: I'm thirty-seven.
ARTHUR: I-- what?
DENNIS: I'm thirty-seven. I'm not old.
ARTHUR: Well, I can't just call you 'Man'.
DENNIS: Well, you could say 'Dennis'.
ARTHUR: Well, I didn't know you were called 'Dennis'.
DENNIS: Well, you didn't bother to find out, did you?
ARTHUR: I did say 'sorry' about the 'old woman', but from the behind you
DENNIS: What I object to is that you automatically treat me like an inferior!
ARTHUR: Well, I am king!


Note the Frank Zappa album cover in the background.

Little Nathan and his Dad

You may comment but don't necessarily expect a reply!

At training last night Colin, Matthew, Bronwyn, David, Neil, Jacqui, Miranda & Jodie ran 3x1km intervals, while Jeni, Ruth & I jogged around. The very light rain started just as we finished, & is still falling. We have had about 6mm overnight. For tomorrow's cross country championships, I wonder if my spikes still fit?

Certainly those trousers don't.

Thursday, 19 June 2008

Roll Over Beethoven

Posted by speedygeoff on Thursday, June 19, 2008 with 2 comments

Geoff Barker at Oakey Hill

While the world goes crazy, obsessing over John Howard Tributes to Gay Marriage and everything in between, you and I are the sane ones who don't worry about such concerns but only obsess over running, which is different of course. But my passion / obsession for music is just as great if not greater than my passion for running. For a start, I am using every Beatles song title in my blog titles (work your way back and see!) until either I run out of Beatles songs or they just aren't relevant anymore. (Can someone please tell me they had to break into their house via a bathroom window?) Old stuff such as Beatles music is sometimes good (if you ignore the production quality) but I am not so sure about Beethoven - his lyrics were crap, for a start. But speaking of lyrics, good lyrics make the song, which is why I often reproduce lyrics here. From the Graceland days of Paul Simon, to the brilliant writing of Death Cab for Cutie, it's the combination of word and rhythm which grabs the attention. And I now own Coldplay's "Viva la Vida" (I haven't listened to it yet) which may be the next big thing; it will enter the Aria charts at number one next week; a fascinating article on its creation and on Coldplay is in today's Canberra Times. Also in the Canberra Times is a glowing review of Death Cab's "Narrow Stairs", where the reviewer raves about my favourite song "Vineyard Fires". Maybe that will be the single to follow-up "I Will Possess Your Heart".

The Canberra Times also has an interesting article on Pilates and its origin. I have often felt Pilates is pretty stupid and the article reinforces that feeling. Still, doing Pilates is possibly better than doing nothing at all.

But I am not letting journalists tell me what to think. Song-writers, that's different!

On a completely different subject

Here is my song-writing daughter Mon, at a sound desk the other day, and her two daughters. Her son is running around somewhere.

p.s. My review of "Grapevine Fires" was on 2 June in And you can still hear it on the playlist on my side-bar. (But not in the office; you had better wait until you get home)

p.p.s. Coincidentally, I have now just been informed that small samples of Mon's CD are on facebook at . Songs composed, played, and sung by Mon, with a little help from her friends.

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

Getting Better

Posted by speedygeoff on Wednesday, June 18, 2008 with No comments
At BBQ Stakes today, Roger ran ~29:05, meaning he is back on track for the Gold Coast marathon. Ruth says she's getting better too, and is also planning to run at Gold Coast. Cathy has also had the odd set-back and is also getting better and is also running Gold Coast. In case I don't find space later, I had better wish you all the best now: Fly, Golden Geese, Fly! (Honk Honk). I will be off to Sydney for a week that day or the next AND WILL HAVE MY MOBILE PHONE WITH ME. (Hint Hint)

As Roger was the only runner there today I will look elsewhere for more results. And I don't have to look very far. Bronwyn did the Black Mountain run-up yesterday and ran a PB by 16 seconds. Could this be due to having a mini-rest? Resting is good for anyone, after a lot of hard work. Remember the Sabbath Principle! (Six days shall ye labour .... ). Another goose getting better!

This Saturday's 8k cross country should be great! ALL the speediest M60s in the ACT are running the 8k, hurrah! So whatever place I end up (3rd, 4th or 5th are all possibilities), it will be a genuine result. And some say it is going to be four laps of 2k. I hope so. Seeing as the women share this race with the over 60 men, I also challenge any of the women in our training group to finish in front of me this Saturday. The way some of you have been training, anything is possible!

Ruth at Oakey Hill

A reminder of when the ACT Championships are on:
Stromlo 8k (Men M60+ & Women) 12:20pm Saturday
Stromlo 12k (Men under 60) 1:00pm

Tuesday, 17 June 2008

Helter Skelter

Posted by speedygeoff on Tuesday, June 17, 2008 with No comments

Charlie at Oakey Hill

At Monday night's training were Amanda, Christine G, Christopher, Emma, Ewen, me, Helen, Jill, Katie, Ken, Mick C, Mick H, Miranda and Neil. We ran our 20 x 100m up-hill sprints on 90 seconds. It was relatively mild for this time of year, and the hill was reasonably grassy too. But a little dark despite the moon being up: rather, if there were more cloud we could see better, from the reflection off the clouds of the city lights.

Official results from High Noon meets:
25 May
Chris Gates 68.80

15 June
Kathy Sims 3:00.53
Geoff Moore 11:23.26
Ken White 11:41.51
Katie Forestier 11:50.65
Ewen Thompson 12:24.39
Amanda Walker 12:40.69

Cooleman Ridge Cross Country Club result
22. Mick Horan 35:45
37. Charlie McCormack 37:32
39. Helen Larmour 38:00
50. Maria O'Reilly 40:44
64 finishers

Helen at Oakey Hill

Monday, 16 June 2008

we can work it out

Posted by speedygeoff on Monday, June 16, 2008 with 2 comments

Ken at Oakey Hill. Passing Brad? Impressive! Now for a sub-11 3k, Ken. You can do it.

My training progress
last week’s target: 80k
achieved: 82k
year 2008 total to date: 2049k in 24 weeks
this week's target: 100k including an 8k race on Saturday
weight: 63kg ▼
song of the week: "The Cure For Pain", by Jon Foreman. "It always goes down-hill". It's OK, Jon, not a problem, today we go uphill for the first time this year. See you at Parliament House tonight for the hill sprints. Well, maybe not Jon but everyone else.

There will be a couple of options for those more or less able to handle fast hills. And if you have entered the Gold Coast marathon and shouldn't be running hills at all (we don't want any tired legs and falls at this late stage!) there is a no-hills option too.

"I've spent ten years. Trying to sing these doubts away". Keep singing, Jon!

Sunday, 15 June 2008

slow down

Posted by speedygeoff on Sunday, June 15, 2008 with 3 comments
Moving so fast they are just a blur.

Katie at Oakey Hill. Katie, it looks as if your rival will receive the sharp end of your elbow if she doesn't slow down NOW and let you pass!

It will be interesting to see how slowly I can run today when I establish an M60 3000m pb, because I want to be able to keep improving! I don't want to run so fast that I cannot better it later on. Today this should be easy, there seems to be a cold breeze outside, I haven't ventured forth to investigate yet, the wood fire is much more appealing. But on the other hand, nothing will stop me from going as fast as possible under the circumstances, that is my nature.

So don't get in my way today. This is how my aggression is vented, by running it all out in a fast short race. Otherwise there might have been the odd Iguana incident in my life, but no, not in recent decades anyway, all is calm and relaxed and peaceful. Unless and until I am caught up in a serious racing scenario.

Thus it is good to see Katie & others following my example and letting it all out on the race track. Now to go and do likewise. As a start, I will try and slow myself down, until, eventually the race itself begins, then everyone, look out.

[In reality I will be at the back of a field of youngsters & it won't be that competitive for me! Oh well, it made a good story.]

High Noon 3000m speedy-self 11:23.36 year's best by 4 seconds & a good start as an M60; Ken 11:41.51; Katie 11:50.65, life-time pb by 2 seconds (see I told you she was good!), Ewen was either the 12:22.01 or the 12:24.39 in the times list I saw, and Amanda 12:40.69 that's a good time too! In the 800m, Kathy ran 3:00 I think.

Saturday, 14 June 2008

Things We Said Today

Posted by speedygeoff on Saturday, June 14, 2008 with No comments
Rachelle & Miranda

I am told this was the time delicate negotiations took place. I am told Rachelle can be most persuasive. Photo taken at the Oakey hill handicap.

Notice of Meeting
There is a general meeting of club members on Sunday 29 June 2009, 10.30am, to elect a Secretary and a Treasurer for 2008-09.

Venue: Mt Ainslie Walking/Running Handicap Start Location, Phillip Avenue, Hackett

The Committee invites nominations for Secretary and Treasurer. Miranda Rawlinson has nominated for position of Secretary.

Friday, 13 June 2008

I should have known better

Posted by speedygeoff on Friday, June 13, 2008 with No comments
I should have known better than to have put up two posts in one day, but hey, I feel fine. And there are so many photos I haven't put up. So ...

Social events are fun, especially when you are 70 and fighting fit [tonight's little celebration at Cape Cod restaurant, Deakin],

and ...
Tony who has just turned 70 pouring it on at Oakey Hill

The Goose* on the Hill

Posted by speedygeoff on Friday, June 13, 2008 with No comments

Alan at Oakey Hill

How we trained: Colin, Mick H, Emma, Charlie, Bronwyn, Maria, David, Al, Jacqui, Tony, Andrea, Ruth, Jodie & I were at Dickson last night to run 3 x 1k on the grass, as hard as we could. And last week when I was away, there were Colin, Mick, Rachelle, Miranda, Jodie, Matt, Jacqui, Kally, Jeni & Bronwyn doing a similar session.

Some hill running instructions for the training group:
This coming Monday is our first up-hill speed session for the year. Because many of us are oldies, we should ensure we run up these hills with good form, else we risk injury. Rather than focusing on sheer speed, I would like us to develop a quick tempo with a short stride. Posture: a pulled-in tummy and flat back, running very tall, leaning slightly forward into the hill from the hips. Stride: short with quick steps. Relaxed, and after sufficient warm-up, lots of spring in the legs. I don't want to see anyone racing up the hill with a long stride. And none of that Lydiard-style bounding beloved by jumpers and sprinters, because we'll break.
Coming back down the hill, tall, relaxed, no forward lean (more upright) and a long stride is fine, letting gravity do the work.

*you know, like the Beatles' "Fool on the Hill"

Borrowed from Mike's Running With Lydiard blog:

Thursday, 12 June 2008

I'll Cry Instead

Posted by speedygeoff on Thursday, June 12, 2008 with No comments

Maria at Oakey Hill

Calendar of coming events
Sunday 15 June
ACTA HIGH NOON MEET AIS ATHLETICS FIELD - Raiders Game at 2pm so be early to get a parking spot.
12:00 noon sprint hurdles
12:15pm 60m
12:30pm 100m
12:50pm 800m
1:05pm 200m
1:15pm 3000m run and walk!
I plan to run the 3000m, but if there are too many walkers in the field, I might go for a run outside instead!

Saturday 21 June
ACTMA cross country championships
You can enter on the day for $5.00.
I will be running the 8k - now that I am 60, at last I don't have to run 12k!

Or do I? Here is the official event schedule ...

Yes folks, this looks like being yet another "memorable" collaboration between AACT and ACTMA. I hesitate to express my true feelings. I'll just cry instead. Needless to say, I am a 60 year old member of both organisations, and as such I am expected to run both the 8k and the 12k!!!!!!! Great.

BBQ Stakes results from yesterday
me 25:12 (another good run)
Roger (who is injured) ~33:50
I haven't had a "breakthrough" run yet, but, soon? Still, 25.12 is OK, given my preparation and the dampness of the course and the cool breezy weather.

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

Her Majesty

Posted by speedygeoff on Wednesday, June 11, 2008 with 3 comments
weight: 63.5kg ▲ not bad considering the feasting of the past week!!

No fireworks no rugby
On the Queens birthday holiday weekend, no fireworks in Adelaide! No mention of them! But here in Canberra I am told there were too many. This is not unusual. But one event worth setting off fireworks for was a good half marathon time by Colin Farlow, 1:23.46, well under 4 minutes per km.

lotsa footy
Actually what a great weekend to be in Adelaide. Not only did the Crows execute a 64 point turn-around after half time to win by 50 points, flogging Richmond in Melbourne, but back in Adelaide Sunday evening I sat down at Fasta Pasta Gawler to see the TV on at three-quarter time, Port ahead of Carlton 8.12 to 3.12 live (delayed) from Adelaide, only to enjoy a 7 goals to nil final quarter by Carlton with the end result 10.15 to 8.15. Bliss!

And TV sports coverage which doesn't mention rugby. More bliss!

and so, back to the land of bureaucrats

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

get back

Posted by speedygeoff on Tuesday, June 10, 2008 with 2 comments
We will be getting back tonight .... I ran a quickish 21k yesterday through Goolwa, I will post Garmin's map later. I haven't updated ACTVAC news for a couple of weeks, that will have to wait until I get back too. On other running related matters, I noticed that the Pichi Richi marathon is being held on the last Sunday in June; that would be an interesting run, partly dead flat but also partly run through a pass through the Flinders Ranges, which could be slightly undulating. It's Port Augusta to Quorn. Any takers?

edit: Goolwa 21k. from Goolwa Beach to the Scout Hall via Goolwa Railway Station and under Hindmarsh Island bridge, then back to the barrage via the bird reserve, and from there, getting back to where I started from.

Monday, 9 June 2008

Ob-la-di ob-la-da..

Posted by speedygeoff on Monday, June 09, 2008 with No comments
My training progress
last week’s target: 100k
achieved: 100k
year 2008 total to date: 1967k in 23 weeks
this week's target: 80k
song of the week: "Let Your Love Be Strong", by Switchfoot

Yes it rained all night but now it's clear. So it's off to Goolwa today.

I am not sure I will manage the 80k total this week, as I am travelling tomorrow... and I recall there is a 3k on Sunday so I might be tempted to run less..

But life goes on, see you at the Stakes on Wednesday, Dickson on Thursday, Stromlo Friday, the AIS Sunday, and/or Parliament house Monday!!!

Sunday, 8 June 2008


Posted by speedygeoff on Sunday, June 08, 2008 with No comments
Mentioning sun yesterday was premature. No blue sky has been seen since, and what passes for rain here in Adelaide is falling. That is, there are clouds in the sky, the wind is blowing, and there is a general vague feeling of coolth. And if you run for 60 minutes as I did just now, you return with a sight dampness on the outer clothing.

Yesterday Jenny and I attended the Ewers reunion, the reason we came here this weekend. 100 or so of the descendants of my mother's mother's father (D. A. Ewers) gathered in one place, being but a small proportion of the total were they all to assemble. Great fun; met many whose names I knew but not faces; met a couple who lived a couple of streets away in Holt for four years; met a mother and a grandfather of a friend whom I had forgotten was related. And so on.

Tonight we will probably go to Gawler (north) for Fasta Pasta; tomorrow we will probably go to Goolwa (South) for a picnic and a run overlooking the Southern Ocean. Rain permitting.

Saturday, 7 June 2008

here comes the sun

Posted by speedygeoff on Saturday, June 07, 2008 with 3 comments
There have been two days of sunshine, and an hour or two of warmth, here in Elizabeth. I ran a 22k run yesterday but the garmin decided to lose the satellite at 18k so I repeated the run today, in reverse, and it worked for the full 22k.
Despite the sun, a tiny bit of rain was blowing round in the breeze. We don't get "rain" like that in Canberra!

Friday, 6 June 2008


Posted by speedygeoff on Friday, June 06, 2008 with 2 comments
This weekend is one of those big occasions - Tony Booth turns 70. Back when Tony was an M50 he approached me for some training advice, wanting to set a record or two in the age group. Now Tony was a runner who appeared to hold back the tiniest bit in races, but over the finishing stages he was unbeatable. But first I asked him what event he wanted to train for. 800m. and 1500m. and half marathons. and the monthly handicaps. and ... Well, I suggested he focus on one event and he decided the 800 was the right one. And knowing that if he focused solely on the 800m, the longer ones would suffer, I didn't restrict his longer training, which wasn't excessive, but got him onto the track to do some specific 800m training which I thought would help him most. For a few weeks prior to his go at the 800m record, which I think was held by Jack Pennington, our sessions were "only" 4 x 200m with quite a short standing recovery, at the desired race pace. This Tony did well at, and it was just a matter of him putting the four together, which he subsequently did and managed to break the record. You see, Tony needed to train himself to learn that he could push hard in the middle stages of the 800m, particularly in that third 200m when the whole field tends to slow; and I knew that if he were thereabouts toward the end he would still have his devastating finish. He just had to gain the confidence that he could do that, and be prepared to endure that final lack-of-oxygen pain a little earlier in the race. A by-product of this approach was that a 1500m race not long after was the only time I have seen Tony power through the whole of the race at that distance at his best pace, pushing hard through the middles stages too.

It's a trick I struggle with. Even in a 10km track race I find it really hard to pick up the pace with two laps to go, let alone from 3-5 laps out, where I probably should be starting to accelerate; it happens in the last lap but I struggle to go any earlier. I am not sure that a session of 4 x 2.5k would fix it. OR WOULD IT?

Thursday, 5 June 2008

Ticket to Ride

Posted by speedygeoff on Thursday, June 05, 2008 with No comments
The jetbus fare from Adelaide Airport to Elizabeth yesterday afternoon was only $2 per person seniors discount: not bad for a 90 minute trip! Entertaining too as it travelled along the O-Bahn north of the city, a novelty for Jenny and I who had a front seat view. And right on time. Oh for decent public transport in Canberra!

At yesterday lunch time's BBQ Stakes I led Terri around the course, as it was her first run there, so trotted around in about 44 minutes. Roger ran 26.23, Helen 27.28, and Charlie 27.55, all good times.

Today we toured around Angaston and region. So, until next time, bye-ee!

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Drive My Car

Posted by speedygeoff on Wednesday, June 04, 2008 with 1 comment
Our future club secretary who here today shall remain nameless has already made herself useful by sending me this compelling little cartoon.

"Apparently greenhouse gas is not actually green"

I am off to Adelaide for six days. I should still be able to post each day. If I forget, there is plenty of good reading linked from the side-bar via google reader, and it gets updated automatically to show the newest posts in each category. And Ewen might even like to donate a picture or two, to keep happy those deterred by lots of words.

Or you could subscribe to ABC's Breaking News - Plenty of reading there, for example, Cyclists saving Govt $200m in health costs. I subscribe to a headlines feed, which has links to the stories if I want to read further.

Tuesday, 3 June 2008

With a Little Help From My Friends

Posted by speedygeoff on Tuesday, June 03, 2008 with 4 comments
Training at Parliament House on the still night of a cloudy sunless day was Alan, Amanda, Cathy, Christine, Emma, Ewen, Gary, Geoff B, me, Helen, Jill, Joel, Katie, Ken, Maria, Miranda, Rae, Ruth & Yelena. "After a couple of warm up loops the main session was 8 fast laps of the rectangular grassy bank in front of PH. We started at one corner of the rectangle and ran as fast as we could down the long edge, across the short edge, up the next long edge and across the short edge to the start, then a gentle jog to the next corner to start again on the whistle. Each time the whistle blew we started from a different corner. It was challenging but fun and certainly a good work-out." - words stolen from Strewth. Each interval may have been a little less than 400m; I didn't measure it. We took off every three minutes. A great time was had by all, and because it wasn't freezing cold despite winter having officially arrived, people stood around chatting for a long time afterwards!

After BBQ Stakes tomorrow I'm off to Adelaide for six days. Training Thursday will continue as usual at Dickson (unless this rain continues and floods happen) but for one Friday only I won't be at Stromlo, and next Monday is a holiday of some sort and there won't be official training at Parliament House, except I know of three or four people who plan to go anyway. The following Thursday (12 June) I will be back at Dickson for more interval work; Sunday 15 June is the next High Noon meet with a 3000m "race" programmed, hopefully without a hoard of walkers mixing it with the runners, then Monday 16th we start our hill sprints program at Parliament House, yay! Anyone running the Gold Coast marathon on 6 July is advised not to start the hill sprints until after the marathon, but there will be several of us meeting at 4:30pm for a longer warm-up run, and a few continuing on after 6:00pm to just run around while the rest of us do the hills. Don't you just love the session of 20 x 100m uphill, on 90 seconds? That's what we will be doing, with different hills to choose between from week to week, some easier, some less so.

The danger of close-up photography- I wouldn't click to enlarge this if I were you.

Monday, 2 June 2008

All Things Must Pass

Posted by speedygeoff on Monday, June 02, 2008 with No comments
My training progress
last week’s target: 100k
achieved: 101k
year 2008 total to date: 1867k in 22 weeks
this week's target: 100k
weight: 63kg ►◄

song of the week:Grapevine Fires” Death Cab For Cutie, from “Narrow Stairs

Grapevine Fires
And the wind picked up, the fire spread
And the grapevine seemed left for dead
And the northern sky looked like the end of days, the end of days.

The wake up call to a rented room
Sounded like an alarm of impending doom
To warn us it's only a matter of time. Before we all burn...

We bought some wine and some paper cups
Near your daughter’s school and we picked her up
And drove to a cemetery on a hill, on a hill.

And we watched the plumes paint the sky grey
As she laughed and danced through the field of graves
And there I knew we'd be alright. That everything. Would be alright...

And the news reports on the radio said it was getting worse
As the ocean air fanned the flames
But I couldn't think of anywhere where I would've rather been
To watch it all burn away. To burn away...

The firemen worked in double shifts
With prayers for rain on their lips
And they knew it was only a matter of time.

Listen to it from the player on the side-bar. There are a couple of quotes from “Grapevine Fires” in last Tuesday’s post. For a start, Tuesday’s post title is based on the last line from the song. And the lyrics contain a backward reference to an older DCfC song which I like very much called “Champagne from a Paper Cup”, mentioned because I was drinking same last Tuesday. And I live near a vineyard where fires swept through a few years ago. And the song is a metaphor for radical change, which we all need at times in our lives if we are not to be suffocated by who we are and what we do, but which for many people in many circumstances is a very painful experience. Some people would rather choke and die than allow old things to pass and new things to prevail, even if the new things bring life and strength and hope. And I love the ambiguity of the last line, it invites the question, what are you praying for? Very deep is this song, with levels of meaning ranging from real events in California, to the climate in general, and to the human condition. What are you hearing on the grapevine?

2008 Sprint-Marathon Relay - winning team

speedygoose Peter McDonald on the left, speedygoose Ken White holding the trophy. And four other ACT Masters runners making up the team.

STOP PRESS: Triumph and Tragedy for Benita Johnson. ]

Sunday, 1 June 2008

Tell me why

Posted by speedygeoff on Sunday, June 01, 2008 with 2 comments
Usually we are highly motivated to run, run, run. Sometimes we are not and need telling why we do what we do. That's the benefit of a large friendly inclusive group! Mutual encouragement.

Today I am flying and am highly motivated. BUT:

I have reached my target already this week, so no running today! Better safe than sorry. As I have said before, feeling good is often a danger sign that we are about to overdo it!

I will be back in action tomorrow, I know that many new challenges lie ahead.

New challenges for a spry Ewen:

I think you should start with "4. Barefoot marathon", then "3. Backwards marathon" and proceed from there. If you cannot set an ACT record with either of them, put them together and run a barefoot backwards marathon?

Marathon collage

ACT Masters runners in the 2008 Canberra Marathon

Caution! Political content follows!
According to Brendan Nelson, childhood obesity in Australia isn’t a problem. That’s a relief. Good to see the liberal party’s head-in-the-sand approach hasn’t changed. This follows his contention that petrol prices aren’t a problem, that indigenous housing isn’t a problem, that binge drinking by teenagers isn’t a problem, that his 9% approval rating isn’t a problem, and that Malcolm Turnbull isn’t a problem. and …. My goodness, I so miss irresponsible government. NOT!
End of political content. Normal service has been resumed.