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Blog 44-Tokyo Bound- Entry 4- By Craig Appleby.


Hey all,

Dane here back for blog 4 of Tokyo bound, Craig is doing a great job isn’t he!

I’m actually over in Vanuatu having an amazing time on my honeymoon, so I’ll keep my part of this weeks blog brief and to the point.

I’m not sure what Craig will write about in his blog today, as it’s his blog to therapeutically vent, analyse, describe and/or detail exactly what he is thinking/feeling/experiencing each week on his way to Tokyo.

I will quickly say one thing about this week that I thought was worth mentioning and I’m sure Craig will go over as he describes the week.

Craig started the week with a calf niggle after his hard 2hr 15 minute hilly long run at lysterfield Park on Sunday.

I contact Craig daily at the moment as we are starting to push the specific phase of the marathon build. This is a period where there is an ‘overload’ in training, so we need to ensure Craig has enough time to ensure adequate recovery and adaptation take place.

I am proud of how flexible Craig was this week!

Immediately, we restructured the week. The main session was to be a Wednesday 30km long run at 90% marathon pace (we have a couple of progressions from this run planned later in the prep) with dion finocchiaro at Braeside Park. I had some 1km hills planned for later in the week and an easy paced ‘time on the feet’ long run planned later in the week.

Yeah it’s good to have a training plan but you also have to be able to listen to your body! We prioritised the 30km at 90% MP session it’s the one we wanted to get done, so we canned the 1km hill reps, canned the other time on your feet long run and re-scheduled it for Sunday, later in the week. Meanwhile Craig had an easy front end of the week where he focused on getting his calf right.

Anyway, I’ll let Craig fill you in with the details and what he wants to say but I feel this weeks blog really highlights how being flexible and less regimental with our precious training regimes, at certain times, can be so worthwhile!

You’re absolutely right mate! Hello to you, to our readers, I hope you’re all travelling well.

As Dane mentioned, this past week and a half was a little off the planned path. Usually the week after an easy a recovery/absorption week is tiring, at times lethargic, and takes a bit to get back into the swing of things.

However, last week started off really well and ended well… although, as Dane previously mention, the middle was less than desirable.

While that was the case, I was rapt to have the support of Dane and my Myotherapist, Shannyn Trevorah from Proactive Myotherapy.

Their support, along with my years of identifying personal niggles and potential injuries, being flexible and having the end goal in mind, meant that I did not miss a day, ran 130km for the week and entered the final 8 weeks of prep in a great place.

Due to our family holiday adventures around this time, I will condense 3 weeks of training into two blogs.

Here goes…

Monday – New Year’s Eve – 16.5km, 72mins @ 4:20’s. Bianca and I went into work to get the ball rolling for our 2019 classes – I spent most of my time cleaning out my old room and moving into my new room in Grade 3 J. I had an enjoyable run from school around town, then home. Ran in Mizuno Wave Shadow 2.

We spent the night at our friends place in Langwarrin, enjoying New Years with family, friends and beers by their pool – awesome!

Tuesday – day one of 2019, scary!! Goal was for an easy double day…

Midday – 13km, 63 mins. I encouraged… maybe pestered my friend, Michael to come out for a jog. This was a replay of New Year’s Day 2017 and we covered a 2km loop around his place. It’s always great to get out and about with others. Michael joked that his starts and stops when I’m around…

After the first 2km I headed out for an easy hour. For the majority of this run I had an ache and tired feeling in my arch and medial calf – nothing new to me. However, it has been a very long time since I last had issues with my calves…

I took periodic breaks to stretch and massage my lower legs and threw in some hill strides, which improved the soreness, and made my way back. I figured my Tibialis Posterior (which is a barometer for when I’ve cooked my lower legs) was tired/sore and that some massage and release work would sort it out by the evening run… that was not to be the case.

After some treatment and rest, we got ready for an afternoon pool session. By this time my left lower calf/Tib Post. was still sore and stiff while walking around, so I opted not to do the second run and enjoyed some pool time – hoping a bit of hydrotherapy would accelerate the recovery process.

Wednesday 2nd Jan – The plan today was to complete a big marathon session, 30km @3:40’s (90% mara pace) with Dion around Braeside Park.

Due to my soreness, and after conversing with Dane, I pulled the pin late Tuesday evening so as not to mess Dion’s training around too much – thanks for understanding mate! From experience, I knew that this type of niggle could get worse with more running and a 30km effort wouldn’t have helped at all. So I slept as much as possible and phoned around to get some treatment. Thankfully my Myo, Shannyn was able to assist Thursday morning.

So… what to do then? Dane scheduled two easy days of just one run per day until I got treatment and the soreness subsided. At this point, I could’ve easily freaked out about missing a key session and losing mileage. Nevertheless, having a mentor to bounce thoughts, ideas and feelings around certainly made it easy to decide on a plan of attack, as well as giving me the confidence that I was doing it “smart and sensible”.

To balance these feelings, I planned to get out on the road bike for what would be one of the ‘runs’ for the day, and then do a run after the bike ride, testing my leg. The weather was glorious and I was pumped to get out on the bike. We were meeting my cousin in Gembrook for lunch, the end of the line for Puffing Billy, so Bianca drove the boys up and I rode. It was great to get out and cover km’s at a quicker pace. There is something about a race bike, so light and nimble…

I rode for about 20mins, socialised and grabbed a hair cut from my cousin (perks of having a hairdresser in the family), then out for another 20min ride followed by a 10km run @ 4:22’s Niggly and sore for a few km’s then it settled and I felt great for the rest of the run.

Thursday 3rd Jan – AM – easy 40 mins. Niggle feeling better on today’s run. Myo treatment at 9:30am. Shannyn worked her magic and by lunchtime I was feeling really good, even walking around. I had planned to do a second run, or bike at least, but we were busy with friends and Dane said it would be best to fully absorb the treatment before getting out again.

Friday 4th Jan – AM – 14km @4:00’s, 56mins. Wowee! The treatment worked and I felt like a million bucks on this run. Dane and I discussed throwing in some efforts during this run if I was feeling good for it. It had been 5 days since my last hard run and I wanted to do some up-tempo work before Sunday’s long run effort.

So I ran 7km, straight into 8 x 1min on, 1min off, then jog home. I intentionally ignored my watch for pace and just went by feel, keeping it in 4th gear – conscious of my previous week.

It felt good and I recovered well, no soreness or niggles. I followed this session with a light gym session from home and then check the thermometer – 37degrees!! No wonder sweat was dripping off me!

PM – back into the doubles with an easy 7.4km in 32mins after the cool change – felt good and the weather was very nice!

Saturday 5th Jan – AM – easy 12.4km, 56mins @ 4:29’s. Legs feeling a little sore from the gym but strong and niggle free!

We then travelled to Wandiligong for a holiday!

PM – Desmond (great mate and running buddy) and I explored the Diggings Track around Wandi. Lovely place to run and family friendly too. After this run, I felt I was ready for Sunday’s big session.

Sunday 6th Jan – AM – 34km in 2:05 @ 3:40’s. John Dutton (World 50km Champs rep), who was on holiday down the road, joined me for this session. This session was another new stimulus for me and I was pumped to give it a go. I thought it would’ve taken longer to get up to pace; however, after a km or so we were right on target. The rail trail we were using was fantastic. We accessed it only 200m from our house and spent the next 34km on it. We rolled at pace until 16km when JD turned around, conscious that he is still returning to fitness, and I continued to 17km. once leaving JD my pace quickened a little to average 3:35’s right up to the point where I caught him again, at 32km! Well done JD!! My focus for this session was being in control and comfortable, as well as relaxed when/if the pace begun to tire me. I felt great and nailed the session. This was another fasted session and I didn’t take anything on board for the run. By 28-30km I was keen for a drink but never lacking energy (holiday fuel J). My form felt strong for the duration which was great. A big confidence and training tick. I’m sure glad we erred on the side of caution this week because it payed off!

PM – an easy 7km with Des. As usual, I felt heavy to start and finished feeling great. It was wonderful to share the journey with John and Des today. It is also the same with Dane and Dion – our Tokyo Bound training crew, helping each other to achieve success.

Total mileage – 130km and injury free!

Monday 7th Jan – AM easy 12km. felt a little tired and sore, as expected, but ran well.

We planned to do a winery/brewery crawl on bikes, with our kids… we managed 2km out of the 28-30km and no venues were reached. Just like being flexible with training, we also need to be flexible with our plans while on holidays, haha. Lachie was not keen at all, so we turned back after 1km and reloaded for the “crawl”, only this time in our cars – smart move.

PM: – After our day of crawling, I ran around Bright and then back to Wandi – 8km, 38mins.

Tuesday 8th Jan – AM. Thunderstorms were forecast for today. We woke to calm and dry conditions. Des and I had the grand plan to explore some fire tracks and run up the ridge of a series of hills behind our house. 5km into the journey and into the climbing phase of the run, the skies opened. “…water was running down my legs into my socks…” Des put it nicely. We were loving it though… until we made the peak and saw the track head off in the wrong direction. We played it safe and ran back the way we came. This meant for a longer run. – 19.3km in 1:45 @ 5:26’s. Elevation gain – 830m.

I decided not to run in the PM… J

Wednesday 9th Jan – AM – Heading home day. We had planned either today or tomorrow to do an interval session of 20 x 1min with 30 sec float. After running for a few km’s in my warm up I knew it would be best to absorb the downhill running from yesterday (as it was just as damaging to my quads as a normal fartlek type of session) and not do the session today. Instead I ran 16km in 70mins @ 4:24’s. A lovely journey along Morses Creek into Bright and back.

PM – after 7 hours of travel and sight-seeing up at Mt Buffalo I rolled out for an easy 7km. I was stiff and niggly from the drive, but was running well by the end.

A really good fortnight of training and time spent with family and friends. Key lesson here – be flexible and listen to your body, it saved my Tokyo build up and I was able to hit the key sessions = win.

Happy running to you and keep at it.

I’ll be back with another week-and-a-half blog next time.



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