European training #2: Hamburg Alster Lake

After Morzine I headed off to Hamburg to indulge my other life as a triathlon technical official.

I knew there wouldn't be a lot of time to train but I managed to get in a 10k run around the Alster Lake.

I had intended to run more through the city and take in the architecture but as I headed out from my hotel I followed the other runners to what seems to be the city's primary running track.

There's even a self-timed running route around the lake - just purchase your chip from the official website of Alster running and you're away!

It was a bit of a gloomy morning but I still took the time to take in the views including this small harbour at the end of the Lake.

And, I still got my architecture in - stopping by St Georg's Kirchen on the way back to the hotel.

Even though 10ks isn't really a lot of mileage for where I'm at with my training I found out later in the day that none of my technical official friends went out in the rain that morning. I felt good at having done *something*

Check out the Strava file for this run.



European training #1: Morzine

I was looking forward to Morzine. We'd visited on our previous trip to France and it was a beautiful town with lots of great cycling nearby.

We'd been struck by how many mountain bikers had been in town. So I knew there would be trails there and I was relishing the thought. I found there was a trail up to the top of Avoriaz, a nearby ski station that I'd cycled up on our previous visit so that was my choice.

I wasn't so excited at the weather forecast - 14 degrees and rain.

I decided I had to go out for a run anyway - particularly after being all gloves off about my training in my previous blog post.

With a map from the Morzine tourist office I head up the mountain confidently.

That didn't last long - I found a trail marker outside a row of houses - but couldn't find the trail. Consulting my map, I saw that the there was another trail junction a few switchbacks up, so continued up the road in search of it.

However, I failed in this quest. The cold and dreary weather got to me and not even the sight of the cable car gondolas through the mist helped.

Reluctantly, I turned back down the mountain, and came across a mountain bike trail back to Morzine. I headed down that instead of the road, and by the time I got back to Morzine the rain had stopped. I made up some ks by running along the river to the outskirts and town, then back to our accommodation.

Check out this run on Strava.

I'm back and I'm here!

I'm writing this on the flight to Geneva, with just over six weeks to go before the CCC at the UTMB.

I should be excited, but right now, trying to get my thoughts together - I'm not quite there yet. 

When I found out in February I'd been drawn in the lottery for this event, I wanted to do it justice. I decided I wanted to have a similar preparation as if had for the GNW100 last year. I wanted to be as fit as I'd ever been. I wanted to be ready. 

I wanted to be many things, but now I'm looking back wishing.

I wish I hadn't sprained my ankle in February. I wish I had have lost a couple more kilograms. I wis I had have gotten up in the cold a few more times. I wish I hadn't gotten sick a few weeks ago. 

But that's all done now and I'm on the plane and I'm telling myself I still have time for some good solid training. And that's true. 

I can also feel satisfied that I made my last weekend in Brisbane count. 

On Saturday I ran one of the city's most popular cycling routes, the river loop. It was a solid 36 Ka on the road. I felt strong and I felt fit. It's a run I have up my sleeve for when I need the confidence boost that comes from knowing I was running what must others ride.

On Sunday I covered 22ks out at Bunyaville. It wasn't really enough - I should really have gone for 25 - 30ks. But it was the first time I'd really attacked a trail run since my injury. I didn't make excuses, I just ran the way I want to in my upcoming event - consistent on the flat, confident in the downhills, and steady and strong up hills. 

In retrospect, I think what I was trying to do last weekend was rule a line under all this doubt so I can start fresh for my last training push, unencumbered by work and by winter. 

The forecast for our first stop, Morzine, doesn't guarantee the latter, but I've promised myself some adventure and some space to reconfigure my thoughts and energy. 





Paying it forward

I get so much support when I do big events, from far and wide.

Friends that pop up unexpectedly, friends that track me remotely, friends that think to send me a text, or an email, to wish me well.

I had the pleasure of paying that energy forward last weekend, to my dear friend Donna, who tackled the Oxfam Trailwalker with her team the Wander Women.

Running winter errands

Each year I find myself with a short lived bout of winter sadness.

Last year I beat it through a combination of public transport and obligation.

This last weekend I ran an errand.

It's global running day and I didn't run

I know right.

I'M A RUNNER. THIS IS MY DAY

Though I feel like it's *really* a day for northern hemisphere runners, where it's the first day of summer. Here it's the first day of winter and it felt like it.

That's not why I didn't run today though. I promise!