Monday, April 20, 2009

Night Hawk #7 - Pace Training Begins

NightHawk Session #7 Briefing

The second half of the NightHawk Program started off with session #7 this morning. 40+ runners turned up, mainly doing 20km and 32km. Today's training will focus on developing a steady pace for the marathon runners, ranging from 5:30min/km - 7:00min/km. Run pacers were on hand to provide guiding paces; Keonz did the 5:30min/km-6:00min/km, Anthony and Spencer the 6:00min/km - 6:30min/km and YN the 6:30min/km - 7:00min/km. Jancy did the 10km, while DO and Ah Beng covered 20km.

The run began at about 7.20am, after briefing of the run and route. I was steadied at about 6:20min/km for the first 10km, and bumped into Commando and a few familiar faces along ECP doing their ninja training. The group of Simon, Richard and Charmane, Spencer, acidburn merged around the NSRCC area. The sun was hot and searing...fortunately many of the runners had their hydration systems with them.

60% of the runners were familiar faces, and that made the situation easier for the pacers with respect to the route and U-turn points. The shade along Changi Coastal Road provided some respite, and allowed me to catch up a little with the front group of Spencer, Charmane. Beverly, tnancy and a rather large group went with the 20km, led by DO and Beng. The 32km U-turn was along the 6th shelter @ Changi Coastal...we took a short break before going back along Coastal. With the weather getting warmer, we were drinking gatorade mix was almost gone mid-way. Offered some to YN, but she wanted to try to be a 'camel'.....hmm, not a good idea on such a hot day, but she has the base to sustain.

I had good chats with a number of the new trainees, and they seemed to be holding out pretty well. I could feel the heat getting to them, and encouraged them to slow down a little so as not to burn out. To catch up for some lost time from the various water stops, I increased the pace to 6min/km to even the pace to an average of 6:15min/km. We had a final water cooler stop near the NSRCC, where I was joined by YN, Charmane, acid and their group. Because of the heat, even the water flowing from the water fountain was warm. With 9km to go, I continued on with my target pace of 6:15min/km. The heat really got to the runners by that time, and few were able to keep pace. I managed to catch up with Spencer who was also finding the heat unbearable. I was slightly concerned for our runners, and was glad the bulk decided to turn back for 26km or less.....leave it for another less HOT day bah ;)

With 6km to go, I had to make 2 more water stops to wash off the salt on my face and arms, as well as to top up with tap water. I maintained a 6min/km pace, and could see none of our runners in front, until the final 3.5km. Kelly was feeling hungry....told her to get some sugar water up ahead. I encouraged them to slow jog, instead of walking for too long. In order to keep my 6:15min/km pace, I didn't stop much today. With 1.5km to go, spotted frootloops (Edwin) on his bike service iced-cold, heavenly. Since I was near to the finish, I didn't really need it then. I continued on to find Eugene and Darren who was taking a final walk break. I urged them to jog with me all the way to the finish for a nice group photo shot.

The iced-cold 100plus at the FatBird Watering Hole was truly refreshing. I grabbed a banana for a quick recovery meal. Many of the runners mentioned that this was one of their hardest runs to date, and they were happy to have made it through. We congratulated them on their achievement....their mental strngth would have gone at least 1-2 notches up....well done NightHawkers. Colleen came back after doing a gruelling 32km+ with her camelbak, and could even muster a nice victory smile for the camera. Lai Chee and Lesley had no problemns completing their 35km distance, even in this heat.

HOT but satisfying 32km

When all had come back by 11.30am, NightHawk Central conducted a ops meeting to prepare for next Friday's familiarization run #1 of the Sundown route. There will be 3 more long runs of 30km+ to look forward to, after which we will go into tapering phase. NightHawk trainees who came for at least 3 run sessions were issued with the Team FatBird trainee card for recording of their training sessions, as well as identifying them as Team FatBird runners and trainees. The attractive ID card will serve as a good record of the tough training that they have gone through.....looking back one day will surely bring back 'sweet' memories of jobs well done :)
Distance: 32km__Time: 3hr20min__Pace: 6:17min/km

Photo Slideshow by Brokie

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At 9:37 PM, Blogger roentgen said...

Great job with organising and recording all the training runs. The newbies are very lucky to have experienced runners like all of you helping them. Keep up the good work!


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