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Pain in Domain - Has the format changed?


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#1 Sher

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 01:53 AM

Hi,
As all my running buddies were unavailable for intervals today, I decided to join in with Pain in the Domain. I haven't done it for a few years as I found the groups were getting a bit big. Anyway, I was shocked to be dropped by the 3rd group today before the end of the 4th sprint!! I gave up trying to keep up at the top of Flagpoles Hill, and ended up doing some of the remaining sprints back to the finish. The 1st group (Who I thought were meant to be the "fast" group) finished shortly after me as I'd cut the distance by about 1.5k. The leading guy said they did 28:45. Then when the 3rd group finished, I checked their elapsed time as I hadn't stopped my watch from when I started with them - they did 28:20!!! Faster than the "fast" group, and way faster than I recalled the 3rd group ever doing!!

I noticed that in the 3rd group, their "recovery" between "surges" was not as slow as I recall from past years. I'm wondering whether the format has changed so that Pain is now more of a "fast run", with only a slight increase in speed for the "surges"? That's certainly the format that the 3rd group used today.

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#2 Action

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 02:21 AM

There has been a gradual speedup of groups 2 and 3 to now be usually faster than group 1!  Groups 4+ are more sensible and are usually over 30 mins for the journey.  

So, no official format change, but as there is no single organiser and the leaders of each group are volunteers week to week, it seems the only way to return to the "group 1 fastest, group 5 slowest" is for some discussion and sorting out of the pace.... any volunteers?  :unsure:

#3 stillcrazy

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 04:39 PM

I did Pain with Group 4 yesterday for the first time in about 9 months. I've always found this Group to be a good pace (around 30'30" yesterday I think). You can go as fast as your able in the sprints (although there aren't too many really fast sprinters in Group 4) & the recoveries are at the right sort of pace. My impression of 1 or 2 other Groups is that there is pretty limited recovery between sprints, which kind of defeats one of the main purposes of that sort of run I would have thought. In any event, it's a great little run & well led.

#4 Sawdust

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 06:01 PM

I led group two yesterday and yes we were a tad fast over the length of the course. I felt we were at a good pace during the recoveries although the overall time would indicate that we could have slowed down a bit more. I was surprised after the short gate to gate sprint behind Govt house to see group three just about to start that sprint, and may have quickened a bit there.

I agree with Action that things probably do need to be further defined, but how that is done with a session such as this I don't know.

I noted just before the start that some of the faster runners were holding back for later groups and believe that this was because they were recovering from the half. I guess that when you have faster runners holding back the pace of your session will naturally be quicker.

BTW I would love to just turn up and hide in the back of the group as I live in fear of taking the group too hard, but if no one else steps up.....

#5 Bandanna

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 07:03 PM

Gem has taken Group 3 the last few weeks, doing a fine job. She did say from the outset that she wanted to take the Group a little bit quicker, with resultant little recovery in between the surges.

Recovering from flu and the 1/2, I dropped myself to Group 4 yesterday, and noticed a huge difference - I was actually able to win the sprint to the Gate behind Government House, instead of gamely trying to hang onto the back of the pack! The thought of doing a cartwheel a la Miss_Skarmel was contemplated   :P    

I will be back next week in Group 3.

#6 Action

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 07:25 PM

Sawdust said:

quote:


  BTW I would love to just turn up and hide in the back of the group as I live in fear of taking the group too hard, but if no one else steps up.....

Sawdust, we have something in common - I led Group 2 for quite a while but like you, would prefer to slip in the back of a pack more often than not, but if no-one else steps up ... hence I don't do Pain too often any more.

So, we will have to have a chat to the lovely Gem, will we?    :D  

I am planning on Pain next week, so perhaps we can do a little influencing as the groups go off...   :rolleyes:

#7 Leftie

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 09:06 PM

I have not been to Pain all that regularly this year, but in the past 12 months I must have been to about half of the sessions. In that time Group 1 has never been slower than 27.20 and is generally around the high 25 or low 26 min mark. Having said that, last week was my first one for a couple of months and that was 27.18 so perhaps the group has got a bit slower. But 28.45! The SMH Half must be to blame.

I think the main difference is in the speed of the sprints, so the recoveries are generally about the same length in the first 3 groups. As a result, if you have some slower people in Group 1 then this can slow the session down. Funnily enough, whereas last year you had to run the long sprint around Farm Cove in under 2 mins to lead it, 2.04 was enough last week so this would indicate that it has slowed.

#8 Gem

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 09:47 PM

Hi All

Yes I am the guilty one for leading Group 3 probably a little too fast.

We have been finding that there are just too many people in group 3 (more than 30) so have hastened both the sprints and the recovery to ensure that there is an even spread of runners between all the groups (in most cases there are about 5-6 groups).  Further, I have been instructed to keep the time around the 28.30 mark.  Yesterday the front runners finished in 28.05, the mid (with me) in about 28.20 and a few around 28.50. (Action - I am happy to take Group 2 if they want a faster session........   :)      :)    but they may be scared of me)

Agree that perhaps the recovery needs to be a little slower.  However, yesterday in our session the majority - at least 90% of runners - stayed with the pack.

It is hard to judge what to make of the recovery.  My view is that if the majority is staying together and is trying their back-side off in the sprints, then the pace is OK.  In my view you should push yourself - some people in group 3 have very much stepped outside of their comfort zones and have come to me after the session quite surprised at their time and pleased with their achievement.  I also hold the view that if you make the recovery too slow, your heart rate drops and you lose some value from the hard sprint.

In any event, I am off to Singapore for 3 years and will most likely only have 2 or 3 "Pains" left to lead, so another volunteer will take the reigns.  They know doubt will have a different interpretation of what "Pain" means to them - after 6 years I have adapted it to suit the runners in the group and my own style.  I apologise if this does not suit everyone, however I do aim to make you all run as hard as you can and make the session worthwhile, a challenge and something to be proud of.

#9 Amjan

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 10:11 PM

I haven't done pain for ages (mostly because I am too scared of Gem   :P . Just kidding ) but agree with what Gem said. To me it was all about pushing yourself out of your comfort zone, and maintaining a fairly consistent level

#10 FakePlasticTrees

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 10:35 PM

I think I'd attend if it was called Peace in the domain.

Doesn't this all sound familiar to Striders STaR participants.

#11 Action

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 10:46 PM

I am with you, Amjan, Gem is scary   ;)

gnscon, yep, STaR pace all over again... can I not avoid it somehow?

Gem, your sessions are a delight (really - I have done a few) and it is very much the right of the group leader to do just what they want - they have stepped up to drive the bus, so they get to call the shots.  No argument there (wouldn't dare argue with Gem, anyway...)

Your logic and construction of the session makes sense, and I look forward to running with you in the Singapore Sweatshop next time I go through there.  The S'pore Hash had better look out!

#12 Gem

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 10:59 PM

I really am very nice when you get to know me.....

#13 Sher

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 11:18 PM

Hi,

Good to read everyone's feedback,

I think I'll try the 4th group next time, with a goal of making it into the 3rd again!!

Sher

#14 Sawdust

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Posted 25 May 2005 - 11:36 PM

Further to my previous post, it would seem we had the pace pretty close if  (from the info in this thread)
GP1 is normally 27:15ish 700m 2:08ish
GP 2 yesterday was 27:43  front runners by my watch 700m 2:20ish
GP 3 yesterday was 28:20

I guess more need to step up a group if they are finding their group easy. It is after all called "Pain" for a reason isn't it?

The best thing about this session in my opinion is the number of groups giving the ability to select a suitable group

#15 amalthea

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Posted 31 May 2005 - 08:16 PM

I've just got back from Pain in the Domain, led by Gem.  She's a legend and the session was awesome - 28.10.  Why not go as fast as people can manage, and if a few can't manage it they can drop back to the next group without any dramas?

I thought the pace was awesome, Gem was very encouraging and she's ALWAYS good value.

  :)

#16 Half Miler

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Posted 01 June 2005 - 02:14 AM

I also did Pain today for the first time in a couple of years. I did group 2 and managed to stay in the middle to back of the pack, we did 28'ish I think. Well Done to the fella who led the group. Group 3 seemed to be gaining on us today. Very hard and good session. It felt good to feel the P A I N again. Be there again next week.

#17 IanM

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Posted 03 June 2005 - 10:51 PM

Good work Gemm - Continue to get stuck into them.

Pain is about the name.

Good luck in Singapore.

#18 TrainHard

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Posted 05 July 2005 - 04:58 PM

Just wondering if any of the regular "Pain in the Domain" runners can assist... our firm has recently moved into the CBD and, hence, given me an opportunity to add this session to my mid-week list. I assume it still starts at 12:50pm near the library? Is there any sort of warmup or is straight into action? And what sort of distances are involved in terms of sprints and overall?? Also for a 40min 10km runner what would be the appropriate group - I was thinking (given the above) probably Group4??
Any thoughts would be greatly appreciated.

#19 Action

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Posted 05 July 2005 - 05:24 PM

[*]Tuesday, 12:50pm
[*]start near the library
[*]straight into it - well, perhaps 50m before the first sprint  :rolleyes:  
[*]grass & road, flat and hills, even stairs  :)  
[*]shortest is about 50m, average 150-200m, longest 700m(ish).
[*]total distance about 6k
[*]elapsed time 26-32 min
[*]40min 10k runner? Group 3 (ish)

#20 Sawdust

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Posted 05 July 2005 - 05:55 PM

TrainHard I ran 39:29 at Homebush last weekend (my standard time doesn't vary much) and I always run in group two and am always 6-9th in the group. So I guess you may want to start in group 3 but I reckon that if you want the 'pain' then group 2 is for you.

#21 TrainHard

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Posted 05 July 2005 - 06:06 PM

Action / Sawdust,
Thanks for the quick replies... being such a beautiful day in Sydney, might take the "not-so-painful" option of Group 3 and build up from there.
Much appreciated.

#22 sona teigh

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Posted 05 July 2005 - 06:14 PM

I am not familiar with "Pain in the Domain" Interested in finding out about it , but the word "pain" is not a pleasant one.  Does it cater for all levels?  Is it a boot camp style thing?  How long does it go for and who runs it?

#23 Running Nicho

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Posted 06 July 2005 - 12:52 PM

How about a 45 min 10km runner

#24 chonky

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Posted 06 July 2005 - 12:59 PM

sona teigh
pain in the domain is a training session that involves 6km of running with about 15 sprints during the run, distances vary from about 100meters up to 700 meters(only 1x700m sprint)
all with  a couple of hundred meter recovery jogs
it is just run by runners who show up.
there are 4 groups each leaving the start at about 1min gaps, group 1 being the fastest
can be a very tough run depending on how hard you run your sprints.
i am not sure what the standard is like in group 4, somebody else might be able to add to this.
regards chonky

#25 Action

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Posted 06 July 2005 - 02:33 AM

sona teigh, to add to my list above (and to be read in conjunction with chonky's and others comments   :)   ):

[*] no cost

[*] no organisers - each Tuesday someone who has turned up just takes a group out... once you know the course and the sprints feel free to try taking one of the groups - it is good fun!

[*] all welcome - so long as you can run 6k... and there are plenty of short cuts!

[*] number of groups vary from 4 to 6 depending on how many turn up

[*] go with what ever group takes your fancy - the earlier the group, the faster it will be (in theory)

Try it out. Good fun.   :D

#26 errorfilenotfound

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Posted 06 July 2005 - 07:12 AM

maybe someone should collate all the cogent info together on this sydney landmark institution.

here is one i prepared earlier - feel free to edit/update as you see fit, especially any regulars.

#27 MikeF

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Posted 27 July 2005 - 02:59 AM

The average group 1 time in the last 10 I attended was 27:30. Range 26:40(today's) to 28:38, but with most of the variability coming from the recovery periods.

Today was perhaps a bit quick, especially as it was a group 1 and 2 combined. Apologies, as I led it.

If I call it again (and there don't seem to be too many people stepping forward for the job), I intend to aim for 27:00. I think that would make group 1 mildly aspirational - it should be a bit harder and faster than the other groups - without being (what's the right word here?) elitist. I'm only a 40 min 10k runner: there should be at least 20 guys/gals each week comfortable with 27:00.

I realise I've set the benchmark at what I can keep up with - if the consensus is a return to the 25 minute days, then Leftie, Action or one of the other speedsters will have to lead it!

Cheers
Mike

#28 RoLo

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Posted 27 July 2005 - 09:52 PM

I was in group 4 yesterday (groups 1 & 2 were combined) which did a all up time of 30.15. Which i thought sounded "slow".. but it was one of the best (most effective) sessions i've done! As the sprints were 110% and the recoveries were proper recoveries! So thanx Group 4 leader!
I do miss the chatching up with Gem during the recoveries tho!   <_<

#29

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Posted 28 July 2005 - 12:02 PM

25-26 minutes defeats the purpose....

Isn't this session more to build speed?

If you shorten the recoveries then it means the quality of each rep is much lower...

Back in about '97 we used to do group one in about 29 mins. One guy did gate to gate in 1:41 one day and most of the group was under 2 mins.

With short recoveries this just isn't possible.

I know if you go in group 4 you can do it in 29, but then there aren't many in group 4 who can go sub 2 mins on gate to gate.

I did group 2 last time, and I won gate to gate in about 2:04, the next guy out of about 20 people was 20-30 metres behind me.

My vote is to do longer recoveries and faster reps. That first group is just ridiculous these days. The quality of each rep is much slower now...

#30 Sawdust

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Posted 28 July 2005 - 04:31 PM

I concur with the concept of slow recoveries. I led group 3 (gp1&2 together) on Tuesday and I felt that the recoveries were pretty good. It can be pretty difficult to control the pace sometimes as the faster runners up front want to get going, of course when you have a group as diverse as we had on Tuesday that is simply not possible as the back markers have to catch up (and recover).
What is really needed is better self seeding sometimes. Select a group that meets your needs and if you want to use the session as one tempo run let the leader know otherwise they will try to slow the group to allow you to recover. On the other hand if the group is simply too fast consider moving back a group the next week. We all want everyone to get the best out of the session and come back so please don't be frustrated with the pace, and please communicate your concerns both here and in person at the Domain.    :)    Consider taking the group on occasions. That way you can be in charge    :D
EDIT For clarification/Comparison My time Tuesday was 28:08

#31 charlieboy

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Posted 28 July 2005 - 07:13 PM

I 100% agree with MattieO

The session is only 6k so any 4min/k runner could do it in 24min. The real benefit in this session is going flat out in the sprints and sucking in the oxygen in the recoveries. Maximum effort in the sprints is the key and this can only be achieved if runners get a decent recovery.

The big problem with group 3 is not the leader so much but the burglers who run in it. There are clearly every week runners in group 3 who should be in group 1 or 2 but are too shy (gutless?) to step up. PiTD is a very tough session when you are at the back of the group and a relatively easy one when you are leading. Step up you wimps (and give me a chance to win gate-to-gate for once)  ;)

#32 Joe Cole

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Posted 28 July 2005 - 08:19 PM

Some people are gutless sitting in the lower groups and carving up, however I think people in general are intimidated running in group 1. I used to run in Group 1 and I'm no flash. 38mins 10ker (not bad but certainly not frightening pace), and when I've run with Group 2 the only difference is in the recovery. The pace of the efforts is reasonably similiar but in Group 1 you just don't get a rest.

#33 MikeF

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Posted 29 July 2005 - 01:51 AM

This thread is perhaps giving the impression that Group 1 is run at almost constant pace.

On Tuesday the average pace (for me - in about the middle of the pack) was 3:20 for the runs (excluding the stairs) and 5:35 pace for the recoveries. (For completeness, 6:25 pace up the stairs!)

My 5km pace is about 3:50, so I'm confident the run pace, 30 seconds per km faster, is giving me positive adaptations.

MattieO makes a reasonable point that the difference between run/recovery could be widened further, closer to 3:00 for the runs but 6:00 for the recoveries, say, and that might indeed be better for certain training purposes. Depending on the will of the group we could give that a go. But I'd challenge the statement that 'group 1 is just ridiculous these days'.

Cheers
Mike

#34 Sawdust

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Posted 29 July 2005 - 03:24 PM

I have got to agree with MikeF in that the pace of GP1 is not ridiculous, rather it is appropriate for the fastest runners of the Pain people. Leading GP2 somewhat regularly I can vouch for their (gp1) slow recoveries its just that they run the sprints much quicker than I could ever dream of.  As I said in a previous post the pacing thing is really about picking the group best suited for you. This may mean a week running faster than you should if you are a newcomer.
Of course if your regular group is working harder than you feel it should please speak up cause as a group leader the last thing I want is for you to go away disenchanted.

#35 Tom31

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Posted 29 July 2005 - 06:59 PM

Have to say that I'm a big fan of PiTD in its current format and it's my one quality session of the week.

Not sure I can believe one of the previous threads claiming a 1.41 time for the 709m section to the gate though!   Must have been a lack of tourists that day.

One thing I've noticed is when groups 1 and 2 are combined, there is nearly always a group 2 cowboy who'll come through and try to claim glory on just one sprint leg!

#36 ebunny

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Posted 09 May 2006 - 03:16 PM

I got a good swift kick up the backside on the weekend - by turning up to 10km Striders series and posting a time I hope is a PW for this season. The excuses are various - and the remedy obvious - more speedwork.

So, knowing that I am at 5.5/km at best at present - do people suggest that I turn up to pain at domain today and cling for dear life at the back OR do I keep doing my own speedwork until I am "ready" ??

#37 John Dawlings

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Posted 09 May 2006 - 03:50 PM

Not sure what your own speed work is but if it is by yourself, I would say go to Pain in the Domain.  Speed work is definitely something that is best done in company - you simply don't make yourself work hard enough otherwise.

#38 Piriformis

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Posted 09 May 2006 - 06:00 PM

There are four or five different groups (ie different paces) so you should come along and join the last group to head off - beautiful day for it!

#39 PurplePete

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Posted 09 May 2006 - 08:45 PM

there are actually six groups these days, and each group gets bigger every week.

And yes, it was a beautiful day out there in group 4 today, although a bit quick (29 mins). I guess it got its name for a reason.   :)

#40 langswm

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 08:15 AM

Is it just me, or do these sessions seem to be getting quicker and quicker. Turned up a bit late yesterday, so joined group 4. Just managed to hold onto the back of the group for most of the session, which ultimately finished with a sub-28min (around 27.40). I'm sure when I ran with group 2 pre-Xmas, that 28min was the target time for that group.

Hope it doesn't mean I'm getting slower, while everyone around me keeps getting quicker :)

#41 Jogger

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 08:53 AM

Not wishing to hijack your thread, but I have just migrated the Pain in the domain page in our running guide - any chance you can confirm it's still correct - in theory any logged in user can edit (click edit at top of page)

#42 langswm

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 09:02 AM

I checked the details, Kev, and they are still basically correct so have not made any changes.

#43 Tom31

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 10:38 AM

Seems just to depend on who turns up to lead the session.  Group 1 (which yesterday was Groups 1 and 2 combined) ran 26:04 in the heat yesterday because we were led out so quickly.  There was barely any difference between the intervals and the jogs in between over the first half od the course.

#44 Bandanna

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 12:31 PM

View Postlangswm, on Jan 17 2007, 09:15 AM, said:

Is it just me, or do these sessions seem to be getting quicker and quicker. Turned up a bit late yesterday, so joined group 4. Just managed to hold onto the back of the group for most of the session, which ultimately finished with a sub-28min (around 27.40). I'm sure when I ran with group 2 pre-Xmas, that 28min was the target time for that group.

Hope it doesn't mean I'm getting slower, while everyone around me keeps getting quicker B)

That is quite quick for Group 4. I guess it all depends who leads out the group.

I missed yesterday's session due to work commitments, but have been running in Group 4 the last few weeks. Last week I think we finished around 29min.  

I enjoy Pain, am normally stuffed by the time we reach the gate after the long sprint. Would appear though that I would have had a cardiac going up the grass hill if I had joined Group 4 yesterday  :)

#45 langswm

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 01:01 PM

"work commitments"..... :)   surely you've got your priorities totally wrong, Seb??? B)

#46 Bandanna

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 01:43 PM

View Postlangswm, on Jan 17 2007, 02:01 PM, said:

"work commitments"..... B)   surely you've got your priorities totally wrong, Seb??? :D

:)

Mark, totally agree. These long work hours keep on coming in the way of play time, very annoying and don't we both know it!!  :D  

I'll be sure to sneak out of the office next week Tuesday, deal or no deals.

#47 Mars

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Posted 17 January 2007 - 04:42 PM

Back in 95 I used to do The Pain and it was only ever one group.

There were many state level distance and middle distance runners in the group (1500 in sub 4mins10) plus some sprinters.

We would rarely go under 28 mins which made the reps much faster and the recoveries slower.

Gate to Gate would be around the 1:50 - 1:55 for the top half of the group as an example. One day a guy did it in 1:41.

Doing the whole session in 26 mins you might as well just go for a 6k run.

It depends on what you are trying to achieve I guess. Such quick overall times will really lower the quality of each individual rep.

#48 Gerbs

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Posted 22 January 2007 - 11:13 AM

Mark

The real benefit of pain in the domain is to sprint the sprints and allow your body to recover on the jogs in between. If you are going 27.40  or 26 for the first group and you feel you are not jogging the in betweens then you are going too fast and not getting the benefit. You are basically doing a tempo run if you do that rathher than a sprint and recovery session. Thats my opinion anyway. Gerbs.

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Posted 23 January 2007 - 12:58 PM

Gerbs

You will be pleased to know that Group 4 was right back on track today. The leader said we were going to do 29.30 today and we came in at 29.15. Excellent session with good hard sprints followed by very easy jogs allowing full recovery. Perfect really :)

#50 Tom31

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Posted 23 January 2007 - 01:46 PM

Can't say the same for Group 1.  Led out way too quickly and a rare appearance by Brightshoes mean't that the reps were no easier either.  25:42 all up which is as fast as I've known it - in hot conditions too.