Thursday, February 12, 2009

Spring Break

AM: 12.2 Miles, 1:14:20, Pawtucket, Blvd, Fruit Loop.

Nice run but man it was windy, really windy. I felt pretty flat to be honest and the workout yesterday was still in my legs. It was nice to feel tired again as a result of hard training. I feel like I am in that mode right now but my knee has been acting up and getting me down. Not really bad but enough to send me into some darker places. I've found listening to 'The Album Leaf' has been helping, combined with a dose of 'Telafon Tel Aviv'. Both bands produce post-rock, ambient, electronic, IDM etc. They are both amazing and perfect for days when you need an emotional injection to make things bright again.

So I have Martin Fagan with me for a few days and thought this might be a good opportunity to catch up with the fella with some questions since I get emails from people inquiring about his form and plan of attack. So here is a few questions that should answer most of those queries.

KK: Great start in Austin. What was the buzz with that and how do you feel since?

MF: After my disappointment at Euro XC I wanted to get over it quick and Austin fit in with my plans, it was a great race to start the year with. I knew I could run faster than I did at Great North run and I wanted to prove the fitness that I had prior to Euro XC. Austin is fast so that was a perfect opportunity. Greg (coach Greg McMillan) knew the shape I was in would suggest an Irish record so my goal was to run 4:40's, I came close and just fell short. I feel great since, definitely gave me a lot of confidence running over a minute faster than my PB and I felt really comfortable in the race. Just like post Great North I've come out feeling like I can run faster and that is what I hope to do next month.

KK: What sessions suggested that you would run so fast in Austin?

MF: The workouts didn't necessarily say I was going to run a certain pace but for me to hit the times I was at altitude suggested to me and Greg that I was extremely strong. An example is my 8 mile tempo runs at 5 minute pace @ 7,000 feet These suggested to Greg that I could run 4:40's at sea level. At altitude we do everything on the road so its not as specific as the track and the confidence I get from training hard up there and consistently running 120 miles a week just makes me feel strong and fast.

KK: So whats next in racing and training?

MF: Right now I am continuing on the same phase/plan I've been on since December and I'll keep the training consistent and continue to build because I know I can run faster and with more competition I believe I can run the Irish Record. I am going to run Pier City Pier in Holland against Ryan Hall and I believe Geb is going for a world record. I had planned on running Boston but it didn't work out and we will look to a marathon later in the year. Right now I am running a sneaky 3k in Boston just to test my turnover and my goal is to run under 7:54, I don't need to run fast but I would like to believe I can run a euro indoor standard. I am also very excited to run the 10k Bupa Great Ireland run. I don't often get the chance to run at home.

KK: Whats a typical training week in the life of Martin Fagan?

MF: We do everything in minutes because we train in a group and we are focused on time on our feet.
Sunday: AM 70 min, PM 40 min (9-11 miles) (5-6 Miles)
Monday: Threshold 8-10 mile @ goal marathon pace, PM 40 min
Tuesday: Same as Sunday
Wednesday: Leg Turnover, 10 x 200m hill or 10 x 200 on-off (track), PM 40 min
Thursday: AM 80 min, PM 40 min
Friday: Same as Sunday
Saturday: 20 mile long run, sometimes last 5 mile at marathon pace.

KK: Do you listen to shuffle if running by yourself and what kind of sounds inspire you?

MF: I run my afternoon run by myself and I always listen to my shuffle which helps me reflect on my days training. Lately i've been listening to 'Wold Parade', 'MGMT', 'Sunset Rubdown', and 'The Dears'

KK: Why are you not listening to copious amounts of post-rock?

MF: I don't find the need to, I mean, I would only listen to that when I'm alone and not running. I don't want to be looking at the mountains and be getting all soppy!

KK: Your attitude towards the post-rock ambient sound is embarrassing.

MF: Its gets me too emotional.

KK: What do you do in Flagstaff when your not training?

MF: Usually look after my dog Ponyboy and bring him for a walk, and I take a nap. Its pretty simple and boring.

KK: What about Ladies and 80's on a Wednesday night?

MF: I attend that night, mid-week, it helps me break up the week. I don't typically dance but sometimes i'll have one too many and get out there. It also depends on the music, the DJ can confuse 80's with 90's. When a good song comes on I'll get after it but I am not known for my dancing. In general its the highlight of the week.

KK: So despite the very hard training and rigorous lifestyle, you do let your hair down with the group?

MF: Yes, its a great time.

KK: Do you miss Providence?

MF: Yes, very much, which is why I like to visit as often as I can.

KK: And Mullingar?

MF: I love Mullingar, love my home but I find it hard to concentrate on my running when I am home so I only like to spend time back home during my down period.

KK: Have you found any tattooed lady friends up in Flag?

MF: Found a few tattooed/mountain girls which has taken some getting used to. Not saying anything else about that. Lets say its slim pickings......

KK: Thanks me man, you have just increased the cool factor of my blog. Up until now it was all about Thom McArdle and we both know how uncool he is.
MF: Is he even running?
KK: Check out his blog at and you will find out everything you need to know.

OK, great day of training and great to have spring break here. Will be meeting Carroll and Tarpy for some miles tomorrow so it will be old skool here in P-Town.

Love Kel


  1. brilliant! keep it up both of you, and take care of that knee kel.

  2. Keith
    I like the hard hitting interview. I've never met the "Great Fagan", but I like him already. I like to see someone go toe to toe with you over song selection.
    Peace, Love, and Jelly Beans.

  3. definitely didn't hammer marty enough on the post rock issue...lovin the blog!

  4. telefon tel aviv is from chicago and their lead singer committed suicide a few weeks ago. they just got back together and released a new record the week before.