Running warm up/down 7:36  1.5 km (5:04 / km) ahr:149 max:160 shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
Run over to parkrun for my warmup.
Running race (Amager Strandpark parkrun) 17:52  5.0 km (3:34 / km) ahr:181 max:189 shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
They said you'd never make it... (actually I think that was just me)
We had a parkrun very near our place SE of Copenhagen (how coincidental!) and it was a nice looking one, two laps of the nearby lagoon, one anti-clockwise and then vice versa so NO WAY was I passing up the opportunity before the serious business of the next fortnight. I had originally aimed to just beat my current season best (18:23) but with all the running I've done over the past fortnight, I figured I was due. Plus I was wearing the relatively new and springy X-Talons, my lucky headband and my shorts that keep feeling like they want to fall down so I had to go fast in that getup.
There was very little wind (it had been pretty windy out here for the past couple of days) so figured that wouldn't have an impact and the fog hadn't yet cleared (usually you can see Sweden).
Set the VP for 3:40s but out of the blocks one guy took off and I had another one right in front of me who looked like he was in for a good run so I sat on his heels for pretty much the whole run. The turnaround was further than I expected, right out on the end of the point so that was a bit depressing but I kept at it, got to around 30sec under the VP and knew I just had to hold that to go under 18 and in a rare occurrence I failed to fade in the last 2km and actually went under 18 for the FIRST TIME EVER, how exciting! Course was relatively flat (other than the two bridge crossings, which we did twice each) and the GPS came out at 5.04km. My previous PB of 18:08 was set in Dec 2015 (Bibra Lake) and I figured as I got older I'd have less and less opportunity to beat it so well done me :-)
Should have a pretty good age graded ranking for that effort, somewhere in the mid 70s? Anyway a happy start to the fortnight. Now just need to continue improving (on the bike) and I might get some Results. For comparison, last week's 18:50 I felt *good* for the run, today was proper 'can I maintain this?' territory. If only I could get the stupid Ant stick working again so I can upload it.
Running warm up/down 10:11  1.73 km (5:53 / km) ahr:141 max:150 shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
Not at all surprising that the first time I break 18mins I got beaten by two others (in the prior three weeks, only one person had gone better than my time at this event).
Mountain bike warm up/down 4:40  1.15 km (14.8 kph) ahr:100 max:137 shoes: Giant XTC Advanced SL 29er
Parked the van on the way to Viborg and rode to the start of the Roskilde event that was held in early June. We had Rob and Marquita's D40/H60 maps so worked out well with both Joel and I riding the same course.
Roskilde event, I pretty much rode it at 50% and worked out fine, no major errors other than a small overshoot of a track junction to 3 and a bit messy around 17. For some reason 99% of tracks on the map were marked as narrow when they weren't, hence the small overshoot at 3 (was looking for a trail similar to the one I was on but it was piddly, plus I was expecting the junction after the right hand bend but it occurred during it). 17 there were some bonus tracks around.
Track grading was okay for the most part but the west track into 19 was marked as slow (it was) whereas the eastern route, albeit slightly longer, also had part of it marked as slow (it wasn't) and I would have changed my route if it had been mapped differently.
Nice change in terrain during the course though. I had to take an alternate route around some horse riders at one point.
Mountain bike warm up/down 13:41  4.01 km (17.6 kph) ahr:104 max:131 shoes: Giant XTC Advanced SL 29er
Ride back to the van. There was some setup happening for either a festival, production or movie shoot around the area. Lots of tents, cables and people rushing about. I tried to ride back via the amphitheatre through an open temporary fence but got stopped by a guy driving a van and shooed away.
Garmin Express did an update today so now it no longer recognises my ANT Stick, stupid piece of junk.
Joel and I were going to get out on a map at Roskilde this morning but like every other bloody thing in Denmark, it was going to cost a small fortune (roughly $40 return each with bikes and it's only about a half hour train trip) so we decided instead to go for a cycle around Copenhagen. Had no real plan in mind, just cruised around looking at stuff then attempted to navigate home after that (I managed to take us back to Joel's parent's place because I hadn't reset the Garmin from last night so that looked like the end of the route on the breadcrumb trace). Had three motorcycles ride past us on the cycle path at various locations so it seems to be a thing here.
Legs were still somewhat tired from Too Many Events of late.
Milk's going to be in short supply in this country after we've been breathing it in at our previous destinations - roughly 70c/L in Poland up to about $1.30 in Sweden but here $1.70 is the cheapest we have found so far (last night's expedition only found us $2 milk so we bought yoghurt and/or buttermilk for our cereals instead).
After 15 days of racing and model events, it's time for a day off.
Mountain bike (commute) 23:00  6.19 km (16.1 kph) shoes: Giant XTC Advanced SL 29er
Wasn't going to ride today after travelling to Denmark from Sweden but we were invited to meet up with Joel's parents for dinner in Copenhagen so rode to and from their accomms. There was some sort of music festival happening along the waterfront just down from our place (on a Thursday!!!!!) and it turns out drunk Danes are about on par with drunk Aussies (except they were mostly on bikes).
Hopefully won't have to put the bike together any more on this part of the trip.
Ride out to Brösarp to buy frozen dinner and return, then out to today's event. Started off with Joel but he'd resealed his tyre today and it didn't hold on the trip so he had to go back and fix it.
Running warm up/down 12:30 2.39 km (5:14 / km) +5m5:11 / km ahr:135 max:149 shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
I had a very late start today at 19:17 and in fact the last starters for the whole event were at 19:19 (including one on my course) but it was still fairly busy out in the forest.
Orienteering (bush) race (Öståkra) 33:23*** 5.15 km (6:29 / km) +111m5:51 / km ahr:160 max:181 spiked:8/13c shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
Österlens 3-kvällars, day 3
Final day of the Swedish 3 night event and I thought I'd go out with a bang, run as fast as my body was capable of after nine days straight of running (and 15 days straight of events) and hopefully win the dumb thing. This worked out well for the first three controls and I was actually in 3rd place at that point, only 12 seconds off the leader and ahead of the ultimate winner, despite a small miss on the first (I knew I was too far left and corrected only when I got to the feature but no biggie, still 2nd on that split).
Unfortunately that's where it all fell apart and I showed that Monday was probably just a fluke. I once again trusted my compass on the next leg and despite going through four gullies early on (which told me I was veering slightly right, as usual), I continued on that line but convinced myself I was in the gully south of the control when in reality I was nowhere near it and was running down a completely different gully (if I'd bothered to look at my compass at that point, I'd have noticed I was going north instead of west). Ended up coming out on a road at a junction a good 500m north of the control. Took me a fair old while to convince myself I was that far out.
Small misses followed on 5 and 6, then went way right on 7 but was saved by a tower NW of the CP. Surprisingly 3rd on that leg, probably due to my running speed more than nav. Hit the next two fairly cleanly but slow through the green, cautious into 10 and 11, missed 12 and found a nearby control and then won the split to the last (the final control has been the same on all three days and basically involves fanging it out to the closest track and burning the legs along it) and even won the finish today to top it off. Unlike yesterday though when smashing the last and the finish moved me from 15th up to 12th, today I gained nothing from doing the same. Oh well. 10th of 21, meaning I just scraped into the top half of the field for the second day in a row (winner was 25:29 so no chance).
I just can't seem to read subtle features on route to a control and can't tell when I'm going badly wrong. Dunno how to fix that. I managed to make everything fit going from 3-4 (except for the fact the features weren't going the right way). At least that's it for running on this trip except for this Saturday
Running warm up/down 10:21 1.77 km (5:52 / km) +15m5:38 / km ahr:129 max:144 shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
Once again showing that Swedes take their orienteering seriously, someone on my course took 38 minutes to find CP 6 and immediately gave up after finding it (someone on the elite course did the same yesterday). Another fellow on my course finished 2nd, 9th and 3rd across the three days but only uploaded his route for the first and third day. Probably too ashamed to show his error from yesterday.
Earlier today I discovered that Sprint the Bay is returning to NZ next year and that the NZ WOC trials and associated public races are happening the weekend prior so yeah, looks like another trip to NZ. 12 sprint races across two weekends? Hell yeah. Only question now is do I run the longer courses or act my age and try and be competitive? I have no doubts whatsoever I'll get smashed by the elites if I enter M21E although M21 (at least on day 1) might be a thing with the elites running their own category.
Joel and I went out exploring the neighbourhood, first down to the beach then attempted to follow a cycling route but failed at that so headed over to Brösarp for our self set training. There seem to be people all over the place in this country. We rode through a live firing area (with no actual live firing happening) and frequently encountered people walking, riding or camping along the beachside in random spots. There were cars just pulled up seemingly in the middle of nowhere. Mind you if anyone unfamiliar with orienteering happened along the paddock with the O camp in it, they'd probably wonder what was going on there too.
Home from Brösarp via a creative route. Despite what I said yesterday about my legs not being destroyed, today's riding showed the exact opposite of that. HR was in the nothing zone for all the rides and I struggled on the ride home. Will definitely have Thursday as a rest day.
To the event, on my own because Joel wasn't ready and I had an earlier start than him. Didn't help that I had a nap beforehand and woke up only really in time to get ready and go.
Running warm up/down 8:36 1.57 km (5:28 / km) +51m4:43 / km ahr:138 max:149 shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
Orienteering (bush) race (Öståkra) 45:59*** 6.24 km (7:22 / km) +42m7:08 / km ahr:147 max:178 spiked:8/14c shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
Österlens 3-kvällars, day 2
Well if yesterday was the height of my orienteering prowess, today was the polar opposite. It's like when we go to Frazzle Rock and on one day the setter throws us out into the open paddock areas then the following day it's into the green shit, well today was that day. First six controls were in the green shit and I had a jolly old time navigating my way through it. First control was just a small overshoot before correcting back to it, third I went in off the road too early and had to relocate from a nearby depression (I had also misread the CP on a dot knoll next to a hill and was wondering why I was going down but it was actually a depression).
Lost probably five minutes on CP 4 that was on the edge of a thicket surrounded by green. My original plan had bene to play it safe, through the white to the track and bounce in off that but I decided to go straight for it and ended up hooking around to the south of it before finding the track, then though I was north so headed south and found myself back at the start triangle. Relocated from there but didn't go far enough and ended up back in the bush where I'd just come out. Stupid.
Next three were okay, then I lost seven minutes on #8 that I just could not read the features or the vegetation (it was in the same yellow & green spotted stuff as my #15 yesterday - the vegetation boundary should have been a dead giveaway that I'd only reached the edge of where I wanted to go into and had not physically gone in yet). I bounced around for ages along there before locating my #13, which was about 150m away but didn't realise it at the time, then proceeded to not relocate from there and ended up back where I started before I randomly followed some guys further into the rough open who looked like they knew what they were doing and they led me right to it.
Slightly off line to both 9 and 10 before nailing the last four (3rd, 3rd, 7th (although just two seconds from 2nd) and 1st on those splits though I had been to #13 before). Aargh! Such inconsistency. Finished 12th of 24 on the day, 15 minutes behind the leader.
Funny thing is, our host had provided us with a bottle of magnesium water in Czech but I didn't touch it until the night before the 4th event, where I had a remarkably good ride. Had more that night and had a brilliant day 5. In Poland I only noticed at the end of day 2 (after two pretty scrappy runs) that the organisers were giving the stuff away so I kept grabbing bottles and had pretty good runs on days 3-5, then downed a heap of it at the airport the night before yesterday's event, where I had a good race. Had none yesterday and a terrible race today. Coincidence?
Running warm up/down 9:08 1.51 km (6:03 / km) +12m5:49 / km ahr:123 max:135 shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
We parted company with Kate yesterday, with Joel and I catching a flight to Malmo last night before catching a bus then train out to a small village near this week's events. I managed to do a really stupid thing on the bus. As we were departing, we were trying to be quick to get our bikes off but in the haste I forgot that I'd left my laptop bag (with all my chargers, reading books, SI Air and good thumb compass) on the baggage rack above my head. I realised just as the bus took off down the highway and chased after it but unlike in the American action movies, I wasn't able to overtake the bus on foot.
Dejected we headed for the Air bnb and came across our host on the way. He quickly got me into the car and we chased the bus down the highway but due to traffic weren't able to catch it (it had a 5-10min head start on us). I thought I'd seen the last of it but our host made a phone call when we got to his place and it turned out a friend of his was driving the same bus back to its origin later in the day and he happened to find the laptop bag on the bus (it had been missed by staff during the cleanout) so I went and waited at the bus stop for when it drove back past and got all my stuff back. Crisis averted!!!
Back on the bikes after several days off (was easier just to leave them in the car disassembled during the Polish foot events rather than lug them up four flights to our apartment, plus I was pretty tired after each event there and the weather wasn't always the best). Rode out to today's event, which was only 3-4km away. Headed out to buy some food beforehand but on the way we decided I'd probably not make my start if I went all the way so left Joel to go alone while I went back to the event.
Running warm up/down 3:29 0.56 km (6:12 / km) +6m5:54 / km ahr:121 max:136 shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
Hmm, yeah so we've had a massive break of no days before launching from one multi-day foot carnival to the next one (by the time this is done we'll have done 6 MTBO, 6 foot and 3 more foot events back-to-back, including model events - surprisingly my legs aren't yet totally destroyed).
Orienteering (bush) (Öståkra) 32:09*** 5.07 km (6:21 / km) +77m5:54 / km ahr:154 max:174 spiked:15/18c shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
Österlens 3-kvällars, day 1
Three evening events in Sweden. The Swedes really know how to do orienteering. I arrived in the paddock to see hundreds of tents set up, a massive arena, sign boards, food tents and a temporary event centre built in the paddock for downloads! Not to mention competitors and kids everywhere. The only thing lacking at the event was the use of SI Air (this was my only opportunity to use the non-SI Air stick I'd brought but I registered with Air for some reason, unlike in Poland where I'd done the opposite and had to change it).
Got to my start with enough time for a shortish warmup and my usual exercises before heading out on course. The start had a real chute unlike in events in Aus and other places where you might get random bits of tape to the triangle and so you were penned in between two lengths of tape all the way there (it was 170m).
To say I loved this event is an understatement. The terrain was fast and runnable, the map and vegetation was mapped with deadly accuracy and after a cautious start to the first (getting my eye into the terrain), I absolutely nailed the next 13 controls (although took a 'safe' route to #4 costing me about 20-30 secs even though the straight line was open as anything) before hiccups on the 15th and 16th (I knew 15 was going to be an issue being a thicket surrounded by a bunch of other thickets but the pale yellow strip along the north side of it should have been the saving grace and turned out to be after I faffed around at a nearby control for about a minute). #16 I misjudged the distance I needed to be off the spur to find the 0.8m rock (all the rocks on my course were <1m but unlike WA where they're typically hidden by grass trees, here they were in the open albeit covered in moss) and overshot it.
The courses were probably bordering on breaking the 30m rule, after hitting my #5 (which is the only split I won), I turned, ran a few steps and almost fell over a nearby control in a gully. Makes you really focus though on your own controls. Also after winning the finish split in my category for five straight days in Poland (they had a competition to see who could get the fastest cumulative finish split time though it was across all the age groups and I doubt I won it with some fast elites - they never did announce it on their website), I'm taking it easy this week and could only manage 6th fastest in my category.
Thought being in the home of orienteering that I'd get annihilated by the local competition but for not the first time in Europe I ended up in 5th position in M40 in a field of 25, just 3:10 down on the leader (top three were separated by just 17 seconds) so there's hope for me yet. If I'd entered M21 (which I sort of wish I had given the terrain and course length but Poland was just something special with their length vs time), I would have been annihilated with a winning time of 28mins and the next 23 places between the 30-40min mark (I may have snuck in there; their course was an extra kilometre and they had a field size of 50!!!) This was also finally a middle distance length event with middle distance winning times!
Running warm up/down 7:30 1.2 km (6:15 / km) ahr:126 max:134 shoes: Inov-8 X-Talon 210 orange
Back to accommodation after waiting for Joel to finish. Unlike me his is running M21.
By the time we got home (about a half hour after Joel finished), results and splits were up and there had already been six people upload their GPS traces to Livelox on my course alone (as of writing this the next morning that number is now up to 14, with 268 uploads in total)! Seems they have a specific tent to do this at the event. Despite having "only" 844 people pre-register for this event, results show that there were 1235 people who ran on the day. Sheesh, not bad for what I thought would be a low key local event!