19 July 2010


By now, you would probably know about the infamous, Paul The Octopus  with oracle-like psychic ability to predict the outcome of soccer match. During the course of the World Cup, he predicted 8 out of 8 correct outcomes including the final, a 100% record or 1 in 256 chance !!

On a more humane front (literally), I managed to combine my psychic and analytical skills to win my company's Fantasy Football competition. The game entailed 'managers' to pick a team, select team formation, change/transfer players within certain budget and rules etc. Points were awarded when the players in the team scored goals, made assists, or in case of defenders, when they did not concede goals. During the course of the World Cup, I accumulated the highest points among 400 other 'football managers' from all around the globe.

For all my troubles, I won an all expense paid trip to Madrid, Spain to meet Cristiano Ronaldo in-person and watch his team, Real Madrid play in a Spanish League match. An entity of the company that I work for happens to be the sponsor of Ronaldo, the world's most expensive player (he was bought for US$132m from his previous club). So the trip probably involves some backstage access to mingle with the bloke. While I am not a fan of Ronaldo, but a free trip to Spain is too rude to pass and is a nice reward for all the sleepless nights watchng the World Cup (which sadly affected my training/racing too) and analyzing match statistics. Anyway, his autographed jersey is selling for $1k+ on internet, so if I can get him to sign a few.... haha

One issue is the trip probably will happen in October. If the chosen match falls on the 8-10 October weekend, then effectively I'll say bye-bye to Melbourne Marathon. If it is held one week earlier, I think I still can do Melbourne albeit jet lag problems from traveling between Asia-Europe-Asia-Australia. If the game is in the latter part of October, then no worries. Will get more clarity on the date in the next couple of weeks.

Anyway, 12 weeks left to Melbourne

Monday (easy):
40mins recovery on treadmill (av 5:43 min/km)
10mins upper body weights
60 v-ups

Severe DOMS and tight lower leg muscles from yesterday's race (12 up slopes and 12 down slopes, albeit mild). What annoys me is that I ran a hard effort, suffered shot calves, hammies, and quads and could only run the HM at my MP. I think 21k at MP should be a semi-hard effort and not almost a full-effort like yesterday :(

Tuesday (easy):
50mins easy (av 5:25 min/km)

Wednesday (long):
24k medium long run in 2 hours (av 5:00 min/km)

Decided to skip workouts and do an aerobic run. Legs are still affected by DOMS and I really need an endurance boost at the moment. Ran the first hour at 5:10 pace, second hour at 4:50 pace.

Thursday (fartlek):
15mins warm up
2mins 4:20s, 2mins 4:00s, 1min 3:50s, 1min jog, repeat for 6k
15mins cool down, 4 strides
Total 12+k in 56mins (av pace 4:38 min/km)

Busy day work and got stomach issues all day. Did a light fartlek at varying pace (MP, HMP,10k pace) for a bit of quality since I haven't done any workouts all week.

Friday (easy):
40mins recovery on treadmill (av pace 5:27)
60 v-ups, 60 squats, core exercises

Saturday (off):
Travel to Phuket, Thailand for holiday.

Sunday (tempo):
4k warm up
12k Tempo in 50:00 (av 4:10 min/km)
1k cool down
Total session 17k in 75mins (av 4:28 min/km)

Hard to motivate myself to wake up early during a holiday for a long run. Ran on quite road around the Phuket Laguna area. The morning weather is better than Singapore for a run - perhaps 1-2c lower temp, still humid but at least the sea breeze helped.

77k for the week. Suffered DOMS and tightness early in the week, hence only did one workout. Missed the long run again, which made it just one long run over 30k in 6 weeks.  Not good for marathon training! After today I only have 12 weeks left before Melbourne.

What keeps me sane is that my last marathon prep in Seoul was only 8-9 weeks long and I still managed to run 3.03s. But what made it worked well was that I had an uninterrupted training block without any traveling and office work was much quieter then due to festive season and Chinese new year.

Hopefully, things will enable me to train consistently in the next few weeks. It is unlikely that I could top more than 90k for weekly mileage, so I am hoping my training will have a lot of quality elements in it. Fitness wise, I am still far away from sub-3, so if I can get close to 3.00 and BQ again, then I'd call it a successful training. The marathon is also possibly at risk due to the Madrid trip, so we shall see.


trailblazer777 said...

Thats incredible that you won that footy comp. Awesome...winning streak!
What a prize. and a potential clash with Melbourne decisions decisions. Also I should mention that 2400 Melbourne Marathon entries have been recieved, so about halfway to full at this stage.
Wednesdays run is good. the fartlek is good quality stuff, and the sunday run was ok...the rest is mostly recovery stuff, so looks like a maintenance program, similiar to my approach at the moment. Need to step it up and get serious if going to attack Melbourne properly, but you know that, plus Seoul worked off 8-9 weeks, so not time to push the panic button until 8-10 weeks out. Im going with my usual 10 week program again hopefully. Hope the Madrid trip is late October, and you can step it up a few notches by August...

Ewen said...

That's a fantastic prize! Worth all those sleepless nights and following the form of the players. Get him to sign anything - caps, T-shirts, whatever you have! Hope it doesn't clash with Melbourne.

You can do a lot in 12 weeks to prepare for a sub-3. Maybe a bit more on the quality side if the volume is down a bit.