Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Saturday Long Monday Treadmill Tuesday Spin

Now of course there is no reasonable excuse not to blog but those who know will also know that this weekend saw me down in Gaza and the release of my friends Olaf Wiig and Steve Centanni

I had only walked in the door from a brutal long 25 km run on Saturday morning after 3 and half hours sleep the night before when I was sent to Gaza another two sleepless night and before I knew it I was on the treadmill at the Gym Monday morning but the road between was amazing

Today I got back into Spinning and the sweat well it came off in buckets

Till later tonight and the hills run

Friday, August 25, 2006

Hills Workout Breakdown

Lap Time Lap Time HR Max Avg Min Dist min/km
1. 0:06:56.4 0:06:56.4 112 121 102 68 1.1 6:31
2. 0:09:21.1 0:02:24.7 168 168 139 112 0.4 5:23
3. 0:12:41.6 0:03:20.5 115 139 115 103 0.5 6:38
4. 0:14:59.7 0:02:18.1 149 150 137 115 0.4 5:16
5. 0:18:33.8 0:03:34.1 117 150 120 111 0.5 7:00
6. 0:20:52.5 0:02:18.7 155 155 142 119 0.4 5:16
7. 0:24:40.3 0:03:47.8 122 153 122 106 0.5 7:34
8. 0:26:45.2 0:02:04.9 160 161 151 122 0.4 4:45
9. 0:34:06.5 0:07:21.3 0 160 98 99 0.5 14:37

Thursday, August 24, 2006

Hills Hash and a double at the Gym

Now I could bore you endlessly with statistics and numbers from the last couple of days but suffice to say I have been kicking arse, refreshed and full of energy once again, have managed to get a sleep pattern going again and even more critical a training program schedule back on track New York is only a few months away now and it is time to put the big effort in including a kick arse time for the WWhalf in October which it looks like I will be running in Australia now visiting Louise for her 18th birthday.

Took Chaim out for his first true hills training session yesterday a nice 2:24 for the first up decreasing time over the 4 repeats for a best last of 2:04 which was a good effort with heart rates maxing out around 160, then we set the TKHHH (Thirsty Knights Hash House Harriers) trail for the next day so a nice 5 km walk to cool down after the hills.

Then today have hit the Gym TWICE , Core/Eliptical/Swim 4 hour break then another Eliptical workout and tonight have the Hash to run.

So really pleased with the return to training, it is days like this that life is good


Tuesday, August 22, 2006

Chaim Topless

When you are driving to Chaim's and the temperature outside is reading 35 C you know that it is going to be a long sweaty 12 km ramble thru the suburbia of Kfar Sava, but then again you can always cool down afterwards and it is a good reason to try my new fast red Brooks trainers, red is faster and we all know that already.
Since my trainers are new and Chaims are also new we decided that there would be no running in dirt so as to get them dirty.
It was a greatr training run we both kicked hard and long and held a great pace for 10 km and did not get our trainers dirty we actually did 12 and by the end the sweat so bad that the trainers not dirty but absolutely drenched with sweat to the point that you wring them out
It is great to watch and run with friends like Chaim who has improved so amazingly and had a complete life style change that he looks almost ten years younger in the last six months. In hot weather I like to run with no top, it only collects sweat and feels bad, Chaim has always been to self concousios to run topless due to the thought he was too heavy, well he has lost so much weight and last night I actually convinced him to run topless, we had to carry our running tops for 7 km's though that was a drag.

Boring Facts and Stats

Distance 12 km
Time 1:08:40
Split 10km - 56:49
Heart Rate 135/155
Speed avg 10.3 kmh
Speed max 13.5 kmh
Ascent 75 m
Temp 34C

Sunday, August 20, 2006

Back to Saturday Normality

Saturday is long day , and after an extended period of just running a loop on the Lebanon border, it was back to meeting my friends at 6 am and heading out on one of my old favorite routes thru sand trails and up some hills . water at the gas station and the loop back and up the one and only original el bastido a long slow hill , the only trouble was that I managed to get totally dehydrated and was sweating so much that I could wring water out of my trainers
but 16 km in the morning and it felt good.
Then in the afternoon set a hash run 6.5 km , then had to run the 6.5 km in the heat
29 km on my first day back and I just fell asleep, feeling exhausted from exercise for a chang. Felt good
Sunday Rest Day and no guilt
Would have boring stats but I left my watch back at where I am staying

Thursday, August 17, 2006

Finally the Double Loop

After so much procrastination and promises to myself that I would run the double loop including twice up the El Bastido hill. I can now report that it has been done. Felt good but it was hard the war here has not been good for my training and health but at least I can now look in the mirror and say I did the double. A small personal victory, in a very hard personal time.

The Boring Stuff Now

Distance 6.6km
Time 43:45

Heart Rate Resting 53
Heart Rate Avg 134
Heart rate Max 158

kcal 551
Ascent 120 m
temp 33C (it was hot, 98F)

Speed average 9.0 kmh (walking el bastido twice was hard enough)
Speed Max 13.1 kmh

Pace max 4:40 min/km
Pace avg 6:40 min/km

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

Defeating El Bastido

Jeff has left and is no doubt fast asleep with a fine wine inside him jetting across the Atlantic as I ran the Metula Loop again this morning. I know many of you are asking why I do not change my training run, and go down El Bastido rather than running up it every day. Well the loop back into Metula going in reverse has a son of El Bastido.

This morning I set out not to run a PB or run fast, I wanted to listen to Phedippidations Podcast, keep my strength in reserve and defeat EB. Nice easy pace along the border fence all looking good, feeling good turn the corner and up we go, small easy steps not racing focusing on just doing it, all the tanks and APC's have gone, even the dust has blown away to a degree. The odd farmer on his 4wd thingy goes by and a tractor is heard in the orchard. Managed to keep my heart rate down to 153 bpm.

And step by step, stride by stride El Bastido was beaten, so Jeff as you sleep I beat the EB and tomorrow the DOUBLE LOOP

Boring Details

Distance 3.7 km
Time 19:52 minutes
kcal 249
temp 30 C
spd av 10.1 kmh
spd max 13.2 kmh
pace av 5:57 min / km
pace mx 4:38 min / km

Heart Rate Resting 51
Heart Rate Av 135
Heart Rate Max 153

Tuesday, August 15, 2006

Running with Attitude

The kidnapping news from Gaza last night had left me dumb and this mornings run was for Steve & Olaf, I could run - they cannot.

Of course it was the Metula loop sans war, the el barstido hill is now a dust bowl of fine filtered dust that is of course my excuse for not running up it again, but I ran as far as i could before I was choked in the dust and stumbling thru the tank tracks that have turned the road to a rutted track.

The sounds of nature are far better than the sounds of war to run to. I was going to take my i pod and catch up on some podcasts that I have not had time to listen, but of course the battery was flat. So I ran alone and ran hard. There are times when you want to hear your breath labor and feel the burning in the legs.

And yet again another PB ... sub 19 for the El barstido loop

Here are the details.

Distance 3.7 km
Time 18:49 PB
Hr avg 135
Hr Max 161
Kcal 242
Ascent 65 m
Temp 27 C
Speed average 10.8
Speed max 15.8 kmh
Pace avg 5:34 min / km
Pace max 3:56 min/km

If you run today, think of my friends Olaf & Steve and run a few strides for them

Qiryat Shemona
Northern Israel / Lebanon Border

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Sunday Morning & Again No Run

I woke this morning with every intention to run, get the double loop under my belt as a saclp I have been working to. But it was not that I could not physically run. II have just reached a point where mentally and emoonally I am totally drained. There is nothing in my soul that drives me. I know that hopefully tomorrow morning the ceasefire will be in place and my run will be peaceful. If I see any tanks they will be coming out not going in and that the Howitzer batteries will be silent.
I want to run and hear my footsteps and hear birds not weapons of death
Northern Israel lebanon Border

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Reasons not to run

OK OK ,,,, I did not run this morning
Excuse ... There were tanks blocking the road as they went in and out of Lebanon
And they cannot see joggers very well and man vs 65 ton tank is a no brainer
So there thats my excuse
Come on see who has a better excuse not to train

Northern Israel / Lebanon Border
Saturday August 12 2006

Friday, August 11, 2006

Fartlek & The Katusah

Fartlek & The Katusah

Jeff and I started out on the loop this morning, usual lets not go to fast I am tired etc. There was not a lot of shelling or machine gun firing in the morning dawn stillness, we dropped down and past the watch towers and old historic tank, (as opposed to the 20 brand new tanks on the other side of town) when just as we came up a slight hill.

When all of a sudden there was a couple of massive cracks in the air and for a moment the words " Katusah incoming" raced into both our brains, it takes milli seconds to process this thought and reaction.

Now I was about a step behind Jeff, and all I could sense for next two seconds was that Jeff's running pace SUDDENLY picked up for about 6 strides, really picked up. we had processed in the milli second that it was not an incoming Katusah but outgoing shells from an Israeli Howitzer battery that had startled us for that second.

Jeff laughing said "picked up pace then" so I now officially will record this as a fartlek training run.

I admit yet again that "El Barstido Hill" beat us again and we walked. This time though Jeff claimed he was feeling tight so we walked the whole hill and I did not object our first km we had done in 5:03 so a walk just added to the fartlek claim.

El Barstido Hill was this log jam of Israeli tanks that had come back across the border from fighting in Lebanon overnight, so we took time to look at the beasts of war as we climbed up the hill letting my pulse rate drop.

We turned the corner at the top of the hill and ran back to the hotel thru the tranquility of the dawn, well tranquil one minute, boom boom the next minute.

Time is running out to get the second loop promise in as Jeff is scheduled to leave next Tuesday.

Distance 3.7 km
Time 21.26
HR avg 112
HR max 147
kcal 198
temp 26 c
speed avg 9.9 kmh
speed max 14.5 kmh
pace avg 6.04 min.km

Wednesday, August 09, 2006

Blame the neighbours

Sat up late talking war stories with Ric and listening to the sounds of armageddon happening outside the hotel room. Have not heard that extreme levels of war ever. You could not sleep for the sheer amount of ammo that was being fired. And that is as a good an excuse as you will ever hear for sleeping in late and not running

Tuesday, August 08, 2006

The one with the flak jacket

No I was not wearing a flak on the run this morning, but it was too great an oppurtunity to pass up on , as I turned the corner to run up el barstido hill, I spotted an uplink truck with a guy wearing his flak jacket jabbering excitedly , so naturally I ran behind him and carried on up the hill . Would of made great TV ... Hero War Correspondent standing on the frontline and a jogger in a singlet runs past behind him ....
No Jeff this morning the artillery firing kept him awake most of the night , so solo run today and another PB 19:13

The stats are sketchy as my watch suddenly read full memory

So here is what I can gather

Distance .... what else 3.7 km
Time 19:13
Hr av 137
HR max 167
Kcal 253
Temp 27 C
Speed av 11.3
Speed max 15.8
Pace average 5:18
Pace max 3:57

Monday, August 07, 2006

Slack Bastards

Now that is not true in the time sense, but Jeff and I are still to do the double loop maybe tomorrow morning. But since the bloodiest day of the war yesterday I think I will have time to get up to a triple , hate it when I set my own goals.

Quiet run this morning most Israeli soldiers are in Lebanon and apart from the odd tank and D9 , all quiet in the village this morning, now getting back to the slur I cast this morning about being a slack bastard , in fact we set a new PB for the loop , sub 20 baby sub 20 . In fact 19:55 and we walked a section of the Good Fence El barstido hill.

It is great to run with Jeff as he pushes me more than he realizes, I am so used to being with other runners who I have to motivate to go harder, Jeff actually commented that we were moving along at a nice clip (love the word "clip"). 4:50 min/km

When we got to the hill I was was happy to slow down and coast up but Jeff kicked in and started on my case , which was good there is a checkpoint about 2/3 rd's of the way up and we hauled arse up , got past the soldier and I said thats it dude I am walking for a while and yet we still beat our previous PB

I should add that at the start of the run as we were walking to warm up down to the start line at Sammy's Corner store, Jeff did say it might be nice to just walk around today , now that is a slack bastard way to start your morning run

Stats you do not care about but i do , so there

Good Fence Loop Run

Distance 3.7 km
Time 19:55
HR avg 128
HR max 157
HR Resting 53
kcal 216
temp 28 C
speed 11.1 kmh
speed max 14.5 kmh
pace average 5.23 (Very happy)
Pace max 4.16

1st km 5.21
2nd km 4.50
3rd km 6.16 includes walking part of the el barstido
last bit 3:28

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Running the fence Israel Lebanon

Its Saturday, Long Run day ... Well today I ran 3.6 km the same as the day before. Not long but 20 minutes is a nice way to start the day. Walking out hotel there is Matthew Chance from CNN doing a live shot in the street, CNN do not like to leave the comforts of their hotel too often. And sitting in the patio are the FOX overnight crew having just finished there shift sitting and having a beer, why not it is six in the morning and you have finished work so a beer before bed goes down well.

Jeff Goldblatt joined me again, safety in numbers as I like to think up here.

It was the fence run again, and the conversation ranged from

" How many marathons, have you run Mal" to

" That house, looks like a Katusah hit the roof" to

" Isnt it pretty here with the morning light on the tanks"

We ran the same as the day before but managed to keep my HR down lower going up the Good Fence HIll past the tanks.

Now Jeff and I have a pact , tomorrow we are going to do two circuits .... that means twice up that hill

If this war goes on I could be up to ten repeats

The Daily Stats

Distance 3.37
Time 22.33 (take 20 seconds off for stretching hamstring)
Heart Rate Average 126
Heart Rate Max 162
kcal 234
ascent 65 m
temp 28 C
speed av 9.9 km/h
speed max 12.9
pace avg 6.04 km/min
pace max 4.48 km/min

Friday, August 04, 2006

Rest Day

It is Friday, fell asleep last night in the chair in the hotel room only to wake at 4:30 am and climb into bed had to be up by 7:30 - hell going to have a rest day today. Looks like another day of chaos begins.
Planning Long Run tomorrow

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Photos of Fence Run

Israel Lebanon Fence Run

Apologies for not writing for while but I have been tied up on the Northern Israel Lebanon border covering the war. Check out my separate blog on that at


Not training can get to you after a while for so long I have been convincing my self that having a month off before I start training in earnest for the New York Marathon is a good thing to do, but since Gaza it just gets harder to find the time to run.

But for the last two morning I have gotten up at 6 am and donned the running gear in the village of Metula. This is the most Northern Town in Israel, in fact it the border fence is at the end of the road, I could throw a baseball from my balcony into Lebanon.

So what is it like to run in a war zone.

Well first up the morning air is quiet, that is apart from the explosive bangs as Israeli Artillery fires into Lebanon, you cannot see them on the run but you hear the echo in the valley, it is a crashing sound so off I set with a fellow worker, Chicago Correspondent Jeff Goldblatt.

Out the hotel and down to the border fence, it is either turn right or try to climb over ribbon wire and into Lebanon. The air is still booms as we pass deserted IDF lookout posts and I explain to Jeff the difference in out and impacts and we listen so that he can get a better understanding.

We follow the fence around and come to the air raid siren tower and turn right following the village road and overhead two drones can be heard as they start there morning circuits up and down the border looking for Hezbollah targets. The trail here is fairly undulating and we move along at 5:00 min/km pace which makes me happy.

Then turning out and down from the village we pass Israeli soldiers sleeping on the path down to the gate, here is the hard part the run UP the hill, we call this the Good Fence Hill and it is a ball breaker.

All along the road up are Merkovah 4 tanks and D9 Bulldozers. Soldiers laugh and wave and a Stills Photograher from a Newspaper jumps out of his car to take a photo of two runners , tanks and soldiers.

This is one bitch of a hill and I am not going to loss face as my HR peaks at 160, I am not stopping or walking in front of the soldiers the road to the down and home straight comes into view and I keep going ... good hill workout.

Turning the corner I am absolutely buggered and the funny thing is that this is a quiet village road in the Kibbutz with no outward signs of war around on this street

Feels good to be running

Distance 3.6 km
Time 20.16
HR Average 149
HR Max 169
Time 20.16
Kcal 249
Ascent 55m al in one hill swore it felt like more , watch must be wrong
Temp 25 degrees C
Alt Average 536 m
Speed 10.9 km/h
Pace average 5:36 - see that hill is a bastard