Category Archives: Allan Seheult

3200m Time Trial December 2015, Maiden Castle, Wednesday, December 2, 2015

8 laps of the track

Allan Seheult

Below are the results of the 3,200 metres Time Trials for Wednesdays 25th November (Week 1) and 2nd December (Week 2) and PBs (first column) before these two TTs. Results are shown for those who ran on at least one of the two Wednesdays.

Congratulations to the many who posted PBs (shown with red background) and to everyone for subjecting themselves to this very hard test.

Results

Alphabetical
name previous
pb
week 1
25 Nov
week 2
2 Dec
Joe Appleby 17:24
Matthew Archer 11.15 11:31
Stuart Barker 14:13
David Browbank 15:15 15:01
Rachel Bullock 13.47 13:51
Emma Carter 17:23
David Case 15.06 17:13
Alex Collins 14:49
Andrew Cush 12:07
Andrew Davies 13.58 14:52
Sarah Davies 13.39 13:42 13:34
Catherine Elliot 14:33 14:02
Jayne Freeman 16:27 16:58
Mark Gardham 13:05
Sue Gardham 15.16 15:21
Simon Gardiner 11.18 10:59
Neil Garthwaite 14:49 14:43
Peter Hart 14:22
Andrew Hopkins 11:27 11:14
Simon Horsefield 14.44 14:34
Tamsin Imber 14:39 13:49
Stephen Jackson 10:43 10:33
Gavin Jenkins 13:44
Jack Lee 11:55
Michael Littlewood 11.31 10:58
Tim Mathews 15.23 14:42
Debbie McFarland 17.01 17:13
Olivia Neal 13:48
Dougie Nisbet 14.14 15:06
Alan Smith 16:27
Catherine Smith 16.42 16:15
Dave Spence 14.07 14:29
Ian Spencer 15.39 15:20 15:32
Richard Stollery 13:24
Paul Swinburne 12.15 12:27
Malcolm Sygrove 14.09 13:48
Andrew Thurston 16.31 15:45
Dave Toth 15:39
Diane Watson 17.38 17:41
Nicola Whyte 14.52 14:28 14:31
Sorted by Fastest overall time
name previous
pb
week 1
25 Nov
week 2
2 Dec
Stephen Jackson 10:43 10:33
Michael Littlewood 11.31 10:58
Simon Gardiner 11.18 10:59
Andrew Hopkins 11:27 11:14
Matthew Archer 11.15 11:31
Jack Lee 11:55
Andrew Cush 12:07
Paul Swinburne 12.15 12:27
Mark Gardham 13:05
Richard Stollery 13:24
Sarah Davies 13.39 13:42 13:34
Gavin Jenkins 13:44
Rachel Bullock 13.47 13:51
Malcolm Sygrove 14.09 13:48
Olivia Neal 13:48
Tamsin Imber 14:39 13:49
Andrew Davies 13.58 14:52
Catherine Elliot 14:33 14:02
Dave Spence 14.07 14:29
Stuart Barker 14:13
Dougie Nisbet 14.14 15:06
Peter Hart 14:22
Nicola Whyte 14.52 14:28 14:31
Simon Horsefield 14.44 14:34
Tim Mathews 15.23 14:42
Neil Garthwaite 14:49 14:43
Alex Collins 14:49
David Browbank 15:15 15:01
David Case 15.06 17:13
Sue Gardham 15.16 15:21
Ian Spencer 15.39 15:20 15:32
Dave Toth 15:39
Andrew Thurston 16.31 15:45
Catherine Smith 16.42 16:15
Alan Smith 16:27
Jayne Freeman 16:27 16:58
Debbie McFarland 17.01 17:13
Emma Carter 17:23
Joe Appleby 17:24
Diane Watson 17.38 17:41
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Blaydon Race 2015, Tuesday, June 9, 2015

5.7 miles

Allan Seheult

A view from the back

A sunny late start to Blaydon.The last time I ran the Blaydon race was in 1999 in a disappointing time of 40:30. Sixteen years later I’m on a bus full of Striders as a runner, rather than just supporting and relaxing as I have been doing on several occasions over the last two years. Now I have those pre-race nerves, but enjoying being one of the 80 Striders who have entered the race, and feeling excited to be wearing a race number again.

As we get off the bus at the start in Newcastle, expertly negotiated through a race road-block by Strider bus guru Andy James, nerves and excitement increase. Now to find a toilet and I join a longish queue of mostly Striders at a submarine shop!

I am in the club runners pen while the non-club runners are in two other pens which will start 30 seconds apart and 31 seconds after the club runners. Chat to John Ayres at the back of the club runners’ pen, who is warming up with a friend. As there’s lots of space there I do some warm-up strides up and down the slope. I get myself into a good frame of mind deciding that I just want to get to the finish preferably without stopping to walk, not caring about position or time and before the Strider bus departs for Durham! It’s about completing not competing regardless of the pace.

Then we are off, and I manage to cross the two raised starting mats without tripping over them! Almost immediately I’m being overtaken by swarms of young, fast, non-club runners. It’s very hurly-burly and as I’m being overtaken on the left and on the right, decided just to stay very close to the left hand side blocking any attempts to pass me on the inside. Soon after the start I am dismayed to discover I’m going to have to run up a hill which seems longer and steeper than I remember, and by the time I get to the top it seemed like I had been overtaken by 99.9% of the field. What am I doing here?

I am “running” at about 13 to 15 minute miles, so the first mile marker takes a long time to appear with more than four miles to go to the finish. It’s warm but not uncomfortable and starting to feel confident I will not need to walk during the race. Sweat dripping into my eyes is the only discomfort. Shortly after the first mile marker I notice a group of people attending to a runner who seems to have collapsed. Then I see Ian Spencer walking towards me saying that his injury is preventing him from completing and is returning to the start. Then Simon Gardner, camera at the ready is calling me from the other side of the Scotswood road, so attempt a smile and adjust my running form.

At about two miles, I’m joined by a lady who chooses to run with me because she is trying to recover from the traumatic experience of being one of those attending to the runner, noticed previously, whose heart had stopped and needed expert resuscitation before the medics arrived: fortunately, one of the runners who had stopped to help had that expertise – Lucky man! Shortly afterwards, we pass another runner who said he was 83, so now there was every chance I wouldn’t be last!

After hearing the lady’s life story, including that her husband had left her six months ago and she was trying to help get him through what seemed to her like a midlife crisis. After about four miles, we agreed she would run ahead from the brow of Scotswood bridge.

Was feeling very confident now that I could finish without walking, so pushed the pace a little. Only one more obstacle now, the flyover which I got over without stopping or walking. Finally, to my delight, I saw my daughters Emma and Maria with granddaughter Ruby cheering and then running with me to the finish where a large group of patient Striders gave me a fantastic cheering welcome which I found, to my surprise, to be very emotional, finding it difficult to hold back tears with the sweat in my eyes the only disguise. Then pats on the back and hugs. It was almost like I had won the race! Enjoyed the post-race, sleepy chat and analysis on the bus back to Durham. The results show I finished ahead of five finishers and six DNFs (not including Sophie Dennis who is incorrectly recorded as DNF) in a field of over three thousand in a time of 1:24:06, more than twice as slow as in 1999!

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Boxing Day Run and Walk, High Shincliffe, Monday, December 26, 2011

Allan Seheult

Seventy-two humans and three dogs braved the fierce winds on Boxing Day with a choice of off-road runs and walks from Allan & Carole’s house in High Shincliffe, followed by an excellent choice of hot and cold food, delicious puddings and a plentiful drink supply.

Most participants are shown in the photograph.

Good turnout! Click for the bigger picture. Allan & Carole would like to thank all those who took part for their generous food and drink contributions and for helping to make it such a jolly and friendly event.

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A Beginners Guide to Elvet Striders Track Sessions

Tamsin Imber & Allan Seheult with contributions from Lesley Charman, Katy Walton and Fiona Jones

Our club track sessions are for ALL abilities. While track sessions may seem intimidating if you have never done them before, once you take the plunge you will see that they are fun, extremely beneficial and certainly not intimidating. You may be nervous about not understanding the session, or being slower than other people. This guide to the basics of track sessions will allay your fears.

What is a track session?

A track session is a running fitness session which takes place on the track [see Appendix]. The track sessions run by the Elvet Striders are led by club coaches, although are also completely possible to do on your own.

Each track session is in three parts: a warm-up, the main session and the cool down. All track sessions begin with a warm-up. The warm-up is really important to prepare the body’s muscles for the hard work to follow and to reduce the risk of injury. This usually involves some easy running, by dynamic mobility exercises and strides. The easy running may be a few social laps of the track. Dynamic mobility exercises are exercises which raise the heart rate and which get the muscles firing. Some examples include ‘fast feet’, walking lunges, skipping, side-steps, bum kicks, shallow squats, ‘windmill’ arms. These exercises are dynamic to prevent the muscles from being over-stretched before they are warm enough. They focus on the main groups of muscles used in running. Strides are running fast for very short distances. For example, the coach might ask you to run 2 laps of the track where you jog the bends and run fast on the straights. The aim of this is to slowly raise your heart rate to that which you will use during the main session.

The main track session follows. The main session involves a series of intervals and recoveries. Intervals are when you run harder at a specified pace (to be explained), and recoveries are when you recover from running harder. For example, you might do 6 repetitions of 3 minutes hard running with 2-minute recoveries. That would mean that you are doing 18 minutes of harder running in total. In the recoveries you would run at a much slower pace, either jogging or walking or some combination of the two. The aim is to keep an even pace throughout the session in both the intervals and the recoveries, i.e., you should cover the same distance in each interval. Whatever you decide to do in the recoveries (jog or walk) you should aim to do the same each time.

There are different paces which you might be asked to run the intervals in. These include threshold pace, interval pace and repetition pace. These paces are determined by your current fitness level and can be calculated using for example a parkrun PB, or 5K PB or 10K PB, using either the calculator in http://www.attackpoint.org/trainingpaces.jsp or a simple calculator provided in the session notes circulated in both email and FaceBook communications. If you prefer to run by effort and feel, no problem, just leave your sports watch at home. The following table indicates how running effort can be graded on a scale of 1 to 10. You should aim to run at the same effort in each interval and in each recovery. 

Rating of perceived exertionActivity Level
1Resting – no exertion
2Minimal activity – barest exertion
3Light activity – comfortable, slight difficulty breathing
4Light activity – comfortable speaking, breaking a sweat
5Moderate activity-speaking is easy, light sweating.
6Moderate activity-able to speak, moderate sweating
7Hard activity-difficulty speaking, heavy sweating
8Hard activity-Unable to speak, difficulty breathing
9Very hard activity
10Maximal exertion-cannot push any further

The main session is followed by a cool down. This is where the body is brought back gradually to its pre exercise state, reducing heart rate, body temperature and breaking down of any build-up of lactic acid from the session (this is thought to be one of the contributing factors to Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness). The cool down may begin with some easy running or walking, which may be joined on to the end of the main session. This is followed by static stretches to bring the muscles back to their pre-exercise length as when you exercise muscles by contraction, they tighten/shorten. Repeating the stretches later or using a foam roller later also helps. Examples of static stretches include deep squats, hamstring stretches, glute stretches and quad stretches.

Club track sessions are calibrated by time. By this, I mean a coach will time the intervals and recoveries with a watch and blow a whistle—one blast meaning start hard running and two blasts meaning start of recovery; and usually 3-5 blasts signalling the end of the session. Thus, regardless of ability, everyone starts and finishes every interval and recovery at the same time—in true Elvet Strider tradition, “no one gets left behind”.

Track sessions can be done equally well by distance., especially if you are doing a track session on your own or with a few friends you could use sports watches if you are running by time, or use the distance markers round the track if you are running by distance. 

Why do track sessions?

Regular track sessions can improve your speed and endurance. This takes time but does happen. Improvement can be measured using time trials or by comparing over several weeks your parkrun times on the same parkrun route, preferably under similar conditions.

Track sessions enable you to learn how to pace yourself (run with even effort/speed over time). This is useful training for racing where setting off too fast could mean a weak finish or hitting a wall before the finish. (Note that in a marathon, owing to the distance, hitting a wall is unavoidable due to human physiology, however if you pace yourself well then this wall creeps up later and more gently rather than earlier and suddenly).

Track sessions are very time efficient in terms of training. The whole session may last only 45 minutes.

A key benefit of track is you can run freely without interruption, focussing fully on your running and running form. There is no uneven ground, pavement curbs or pedestrians and road crossings to look out for.

Track sessions are sociable. You get to meet lots of people running in circles. If you are nervous you could pal up with someone of similar ability and run together. You can also run with people of similar speed to help push each other. 

I am not a fast runner—is track for me?

Track is for all. Track is for beginners to elite runners. Track can help road, trail, fell running and triathlon to maintain and improve fitness. 

The wonderful thing about running in circles is no-body knows where anyone is as it all gets a bit mixed up with everyone running at different speeds. So, don’t worry if you think you might be slower than everyone else as no-one can tell. In fact, running in a circle you can always assume everyone is behind you! 

Also, be mindful that speed is not only a function of fitness. Speed is also dependent on age, number of hours a week you work, number of hours you devote to running, and family considerations. Speed is adversely affected by lack of sleep, stress and by how much else you have done that day. 

There are many games you can play running in circles! Running in circles with others also allows you to challenge yourself. For example, you could decide everyone is ahead of you and that you need to attempt to pass as many people as possible. This is good mental preparation for pursuit races such as cross-country.

If you are finding it hard, a mental trick that I play is to pretend the track it is always downhill. The long edge of the track nearest the sports centre is slightly downhill, then you spin round the bend and are greeted by the other long edge next to the river which is yet more downhill, run around the bend and …funnily enough …. you are going downhill again! 

What to expect afterwards

Some DOMS (delayed onset of muscle soreness) is normal for a few days after a track session as you have pushed yourself, especially if you are new to track. Especially as it required 200 muscles to take a stride when running! To help your muscles recover you should eat protein between 30-60 minutes after hard exercise, drink lots of water and rest or run at an easy pace for a few days after or longer depending on your fitness. If you have more than general overall soreness/stiffness or a specific area which is sore, you could consult one of the club coaches for advice. 

I am relatively new to running—is it safe to do track sessions?

Please discuss with one of the club coaches who will be more than happy to help. 

If you are pregnant/had a baby recently/have a health condition please follow guidance from your GP as appropriate and also discuss with club coaches.

What should I wear and what should I bring to a track session?

Bring plenty of water and warm clothes for afterwards. These can all be left track-side. Wear whatever you feel most comfortable in. 

Track etiquette

There are a few ‘rules of the track’ to keep everyone safe. We all run around the track in the same direction (usually anticlockwise). You run in the inner lanes and it is the responsibility of faster runners to overtake you on your right leaving plenty of space. If you are running with a friend, do not run abreast, but in a line, or with one person on the shoulder of the other. This allows more room for faster runners to pass. When overtaking, stopping, or leaving the inside lane to leave the track, you should check over your shoulder for runners coming up behind you, so as not to cause a collision. Note that warm-up and cool downs are done in the outer lanes of the track to keep out of the way of runners doing a main session.

Finally, …

Most things in life worth doing are not easy. There is a sense of achievement after every track session

APPENDIX

What is a running track?

A modern running track is oval in shape with eight lanes. Running tracks are built following guidelines established by the IAAF (International Association of Athletics Federations). These guidelines state the distance around the track in the most inner lane should be 400m. 

The distance around the track for the other lanes can be calculated by knowing the lane width and a few other measurements. The formula, L = 2S + 2pi(R + (n-1)w) can be used to calculate the distances around the track for the various lanes. In this formula L equals the lane distance, S equals the length of the straightaway, R is the radius of the turn, n is the lane number and w is the width of the lane.

Since the IAAF has standardized track lane widths at 1.22 meters the above formula calculates the distance around the track in lane 2 as 407.67 meters, lane 3 as 415.33 meters, lane 4 as 423 meters, lane 5 as 430.66 meters, lane 6 as 433.38 meters, lane 7 as 446 meters and lane 8 as 453.66 meters. So, if you are running in lane 8, you are running an additional 54m every lap than the guy in lane 1 (the inner-most lane).

If you are running in lane 1 (the inner-most lane), 4 laps are roughly a mile (4.02 laps to be precise). 

Running tracks can be built with different surfaces. The running track at Maiden Castle has a red, all weather surface which is made of polyeurethane (a synthetic rubber). This surface is durable and heat-resistant

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Allan Seheult (1942 – 2019)

This eulogy was read out by our club Chairman, David Shipman.

A tribute to Allan Seheult

Runner, triathlete, cyclist and coach

Carole has asked me to talk about some aspects of Allan’s sporting life: as a runner, cyclist, triathlete and coach; but it goes without saying that I am also describing a much-loved friend. Put simply, Carole, we loved him to bits and we will miss him terribly. 

Allan enriched our sporting lives with his humour, friendship and enthusiasm. In his modest and unassuming way, he would share his expertise, give advice and support, encouragement and direction.  Whether you were a novice beginner or serious competitor, it was always about you, not about him.

Later in the day you might hear about his life, what Carole and the family were doing or what events and targets he was focussing on. That’s a very special quality in an environment where most of us, let’s be honest, are almost entirely focused on ourselves.

Allan came to running from a background of football, a keen and skilful goalkeeper. He always said he was more of a sprinter by physique, and avoided anything over 10k if he could; he saw himself as determined rather than talented.   Don’t be fooled by his modesty; he ran for the Striders in relays, cross-country and road races all over the UK.

In his 50s he applied his systematic approach to marathon running, grinding out 10 milers and half marathons, successfully completing 3 London Marathons in total.

Throughout his time running, behind the scenes, he gave a great deal to the development and success of the Striders; he was an active club member for 35 years and there are a number of Club Captains and Chairs here today who are very grateful for his support.

As a cyclist Allan showed that same determination and enthusiasm, enjoying regular cycling with groups of friends here and abroad. He completed the Coast to Coast, made several trips to France to watch the Tour, did hundreds of training rides and participated in a number of organised sportive and charity rides.

Certain features always stood out: using the latest technology and upgrades to improve his performance; wearing very smart cycling kit; seeking out good places for coffee and cake; taking ages to get ready for a ride!

In the last couple of years Allan’s enthusiasm for cycling, which had waned after a period of ill-health, was re-ignited when he purchased his Orbea carbon e-bike. It gave him a new lease of life, allowing him to resume riding with the Sunday morning tri-group.  With the additional electric power, Allan took great pleasure in beating everyone to the top of the hill, where he would take photos and jokingly insult the stragglers.

Aged 60, Allan shifted his focus to triathlon, applying the same thorough approach to conquering the 3 disciplines. Allan would say he never quite got there with his swimming, holding a diagonal position in the water at times. He said he had heavy legs from years of sport!

Building on regular training with the TRI club in Durham, he attended training camps in Sardinia and Majorca for several years. He competed in 3 World Championships: Lausanne, Hamburg and Vancouver, where he won a bronze medal.

As a coach Allan combined his sporting experience with his statistician’s mind for detail and precision. He developed equations and spreadsheets for absolutely every distance or event. A conversation with Allan would go something like this: ‘Take your PB for 10k, multiply it by your V2 max, divide that by a factor of 3.25 then run two laps of Maiden Castle at 70 seconds per lap.  If you can do that and the weather forecast is ok, you can run a PB at London next year!’ Don’t ask me how he worked it all out!  Seriously, he drew on a lifetime of training and competition experience, backed up with extensive reading and research.

But he wasn’t some sort of robot coach, because his approach also featured a healthy dose of aspiration and admiration for his sporting heroes.  Mohammed Ali and Pele have already been mentioned.  I could add in Coe, Ovett, Usain Bolt, George Best, Geraint Thomas and many others.  His starting point might have been the science, but he was also a great dreamer, moved and motivated by the drama of sporting achievement.

He knew that success depended on a combination of head and heart, physical effort and commitment.

Many individuals here today have benefited greatly from Allan’s personable approach. He believed that everyone could improve, achieve and succeed.

In the last few years, working closely with Ian McKenzie, Allan refined and shared his approach, running duathlon events at High Shincliffe and turbo sessions at Coxhoe Sports Centre and, most significantly, weekly track sessions at Maiden Castle. Typical Allan, inclusive, supportive he would turn out in all weathers at all times of day and night. He also supported and encouraged other coaches and was a great sounding board for new coaches, helping them to overcome barriers to success.

I would like to give you a flavour of Allan’s last week.

– A Sunday bike ride with the tri-club, coffee and cake at Betty Bees.

 -Track sessions on Monday and Wednesday, with Christmas Food and drink trackside afterwards.

– A Turbo session followed by Costa Coffee on Thursday

– Individual training on Friday

-Triathlon coaching, followed by a debrief in Betty Bees on Saturday.

I think we can tell from that, a typical week, that Allan was doing what he loved doing right to the end.

Finally, for the athletes in the room, some advice from Allan himself, comments which have served us all well over the years or which may be useful for your next event. You may have heard Allan shouting these out on the side of the track or when watching you in an event:

‘Don’t go off too fast!’- ‘Stay comfortable!’- Stay relaxed!’- ‘Don’t forget to drink!’ – ‘Save your effort for the final phase!’ – Remember the iron bar!’- Remember the crisps!

And lastly, ‘FINISH STRONG!’

David Shipman

President of Elvet Striders   20/1/2020

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