Week 9 Newsletter

We are getting close!

Stick to the programme

We are now in our silly season, that time in the programme where people lose focus. Every time we have a RaceTeam programme running we find that people lose focus in the last couple of weeks leading up to the race. Remember that this time is just about important as any other time in the programme.

We know that's it tempting to drop sessions because your longest run is over, but it's your job to keep to the programme 100%. It's all about being the best athlete you can be and the taper is a part of doing this. 

This week's Facebook question

Week 9 Sessions


  • Tuesday 24 March, 5.40pm
    Meeting Point: South Hagley Park 

    Map of Meeting Point: Netball Courts
    Pace Session

  • Thursday 26 March, 5.40pm
    Meeting Point: South Hagley Park

    Map of Meeting Point: Netball Courts
    Track Session 


  • Tuesday 24 March, 5.40pm
    Meeting Point: South Hagley Park 

    Map of Meeting Point: Netball Courts
    Pace Session

  • Thursday 26 March, 5.40pm
    Meeting Point: South Hagley Park

    Map of Meeting Point: Netball Courts
    Track Session 


Course Description
Please run on the path at all times and keep left. Please don't run any more than 2 abreast and be responsible for your own safety. 


  1. Starting at McCormacks Bay Reserve, cross over safely at the start, start your watches once you are across the road.

  2. Run around McCormacks Bay Road towards Ferrymead.

  3. At Main Road turn left and run towards Ferrymead to the pedestrian lights.

  4. Cross over using the pedestrian lights and turn right onto the Coastal Pathway.

  5. Continue along the Coastal Pathway that will lead you around Beachville Road following the water all the way towards Sumner.

  6. Turnaround and your half way marker and reverse the course back to the start.

Saturday's Course: Click on image to enlarge

This weeks quick tip: 

'Stick to your programme and enjoy the taper..it will pay off on race day.'
- Sam Burgess


The Taper

The hardest part of this stage in the programme is the mental challenge of doing less training in your tapering period.

We want to share with you some words of wisdom from one of the world's most legendary endurance athletes, 6 times Ironman World Champ Mark Allen: 

'By race day you should be so bored with sitting around that you are bursting at the seams to get out there and be with the other people racing! The final touches to any training programme come during the taper. This is the period leading up to a key race when you allow your body to absorb all of the hard work you did during your base building and your speed phases. Doing the right kind of taper is an art unto itself.

A taper is tricky because of what is happening internally when our bodies try to recover. When athletes start to give themselves rest, the system in the body that responds to stress (which is the system that allows you to get up for big workouts) starts to shut down. It is like working on the engine of your car. You cannot have the engine running at the same time that you are giving it an overhaul. You have to shut the engine off.

The same is true for our bodies. You have to shut the "engine" off for it to recover and charge up in the way that it needs to be ready for the big race. And when you do this, you will probably feel like you are out of energy, sluggish, and getting out of shape. THIS IS NORMAL.

Give yourself the luxury of this less-than-stellar feeling. It is just a signal that your body is repairing itself and getting ready for a big effort in a few weeks. We do this naturally each night when we sleep. We get a mini-taper. You sleep and you recover. You are not working out when you are sleeping.

But during the taper, a lot of the recovery is going to happen in the day when you are used to working out. This will require a readjustment of mindset. Allow yourself to feel lousy, out of energy, and sluggish. This is what a taper is for. Resist the temptation to go out and test your fitness just to make sure you are not losing it. As best as you can stick to the planned reduction in volume and overall intensity. This is the toughest part of a taper - the rest


The Marathon Des Sables is a race that covers 250km over 7 days split into 6 amazing stages. If you are looking to do something crazy this is the race for you ;-) 

Other News

  • Stick to the programme team. Now is a good time to make sure you have all your gear for the race; nutrition, warm clothes/wet weather clothes..write a list and check it twice!

  • RaceTeam Christchurch starts this week so you will see a few more faces at the sessions

  • What Next? RaceTeam Christchurch 2020
    After Wanaka, if you would like to continue on with your team, we have a 7 week option for you. We will be training for: ASB Christchurch Half Marathon, Sunday 31 May 2020.

    Note: If this race is cancelled we are working on a contingency plan for an Extra Mile Runners Christchurch half marathon on Saturday 30 May. 

    After your Wanaka half marathon you have a week off for recovery and then join in With RaceTeam Christchurch in Week 4 of their 10 week programme. 

  • Wanaka Post Race Doo
    After the Wanaka race we have arranged a post race function at:
    Bar Number 8 (the old Gin & Raspberry)
    Time: 5.30pm - 7.00pm
    RSVP: Please RSVP by Thursday 2 April

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