10 March 2014

Post 6 Foot 2014

6 Foot Track Marathon 2014

NSWIB team photo.
Yesterday was my 2nd outing in Australia’s biggest and most prestigious trail marathon the 6 Foot Track Marathon.  In 2014 I felt I was ready on many different levels that I had not been in 2013.  I had experienced it all before, the atmosphere, the build up, the track, the ups and downs and this had given me an idea of how I would stack up based on my training and form leading into the event.  I had set a goal of 3:55-59, originally I was thinking low 3:50’s even sub 3:50 but I needed to change that based on where my fitness was at, I am a believer in setting tough yet achievable goals, rather than hopes or dreams.

Just before the start, plenty of quick guys there!
And we are off and away, careful does it this year for me.
I had a plan, not to stress or worry, I didn’t even do a race plan, no elevation review, course notes or mental prep, just turn up on race day run to how I felt and how I wanted to perform.  I have rules in long races over 30km, don’t race until the end, run to my ability, finish and back myself in tough times as they will pass.  This was applied in 6 Foot by taking it easy down to river, building into the climbs and pushing on when I felt good in the closing stages.  I tried not to race early, letting people go and avoiding the serious race mindset by trying to chat to those around me and taking in the race, as the views and trails are awesome and the support on the course is excellent.

The trip to the top of Pluvio was uneventful.  I ran within myself, I did lead with my right leg too much and had to nurse it a little as some pain developed in the hip, but mostly I was trying to be sociable and enjoy the run.  I hit the river in 70 and the King of the Mountain split was 68 so I was doing well and feeling strong.  I only walked maybe 500-700m all up on the climb and this was fairly quick as I have been training my hike in prep for The Buffalo Stampede next month. I was happy that I didn’t post an 8min km split all run!

When I hit the timing mat at Pluvio I was 2:18 into the run with 19km to go, I knew a 1:42 would see me into goal time, I also knew how tough I had done it at this point last year.  I ran off strongly early on the “Black Range”, then I slowed and had a moment, this passed and I was feeling ok coming into the Deviation.  From here I went away from the guys I had been running around on the Range, Chris Turnbull had got out of sight just after Pluvio but I was now bringing him back and when I hit the road crossing I was ready get going.

Megalong Rd - feeling good enjoying the run.
It was here that I saw my bright orange X-Talon 190’s flash in front of my face! Yes I was horizontal about a metre in the air about to come crashing down on the slippery wooden bridge I foolishly had just tried to run across.  Ouch, I got up and had a laugh and took off after Chris once again.  I closed in on Chris and passed him with a sense that I was going to be able to bomb into the Caves in around 3:58/9.  I just felt good so I let loose with about 5km to run, I opened my stride up and lent into the descent coming into the final few turns at 100 mile and hour.
The finish, PB and 26th.

When I could see the finish I knew I had my “A” goal and really enjoyed the moment.  I hit the line in 3:56:14, 26th male home and 27th overall.  I was greeted by Kel, who had missed this year due to injury.  It was a rewarding feeling to finish off a race as planned and a real confidence (and hopefully fitness) boost before Buffalo in April.

The time was a nice reward.
The atmosphere at the end is amazing, all the runners get a mighty cheer on their journey to the finish and it was great to share stories and times with all those around.  The NSWIB crew had a top day out, both men’s and women’s wins, all team prizes and a podium to boot.  There were pb’s everywhere and it was great to see good mate Mark Lee run an elite level 3:37. As it turned out I came second in the Platinum Beer Bet Group, Kyle Hendry ran a super quick 3:59 to smash his 4:10 handicap and previous pb by a mile.  Other runs that stood out were Amadaus Gladback in 3:41, Paul Twohill who ran 4:20, Alex Matthews who after a typicl slow start ran home so so fast in 3:28 for 3rd and obviously Dave winning in 3:25, not bad for a bloke who only decided to run mid last week!

Post race with Mark Lee, he ran 3:37!
Anyway it is now 4 weeks and counting till the big one.  I am going to have a big 10 days from Tuesday and then it will be taper time.  I am nervously awaiting this one, but my confidence is high that my plan to peak will come off over the April/May period, only time will tell.


- Inov8 X-Talon 190 Orange
- Hammer Nutrition Race Ready Singlet
- NSWIB Headsweats Visor
- Ultra Aspire Spry Pack- best thing I did all day, organised and hydrated the entire race, as well as good practice with a pack for Buffalo/TNF.  I was also first home with a pack ;)
- Garmin Forerunner 610
- Hammer Nutrition - Gels: 2.5 espresso in flask and 2 raspberry packets (rubbish stored in pocket of spry) Endrolytes 1 x 40min for first 2.5hrs and then 1 x 20min afterwards (to avoid cramp)
- Water between 900 - 1200ml for the race plus 2/3 cups of coke.
- Recoverite after, then a beer or two!
- Race Splits 
Finish        River        Pluvio     Black Range
3:56:14   1:10:13     1:08:06 1:37:55

1 comment:

  1. Superb effort mate.
    The splits show a very controlled run which is very hard to do on 6'.