loris bertolacci

Sport, Health and Fitness

AFL Tan running times

I noticed that someone had searched for AFL Tan times on my blog. I even noticed that Brian Cook ( CEO of GFC was sneaking a look  around my site when his security company popped up!). Powerful tool the net. Big daddy is always watching. So that stimulated me to say a few quick things about the TAN.

Anyway Tan Times. Funny subject this. I remember that Doctor Bruce Reid won the TAN Run in the late 80’s at Essendon. Not a player. He was training for marathons but had been a nippy rover in his youth. And then in those days with big lists all the guys who were trying out would win but never get to the first practice match. And if you listen to players of yesteryear they all have  run the TAN in under 11 minutes. HA.

A player that would surprise as having a good TAN Run at Essendon was David Calthorpe. I know he ran well under 13 minutes at 90 plus kgs and won the 40 m sprint in 1992. That is why he could tag Bradley.

Mark Fraser also did a run in the mid 12’s in 1994 when I was at Collingwood. I saw him do a very easy 4 20 1500 on grass at Victoria Park. Hird didn’t break 13 minutes. Nearly did.  Tony Shaw beat Fraser in a double TAN that year but was beaten in one lap. Geelong only ran the TAN once and poor old Lingy had no idea what the Anderson Street Hill would bring. Spriggs won it but geez can’t give the times because I would be divulging IP.

I do know that we packed up one year at Essendon at 17 minutes and were heading home and then Dean Wallis came around the corner. And he was followed by Dwayne Armstrong, Sheeds pet project in the 90’s form the US.

Oscar Kenda was a fitness person at EFC in the 90’s. Gary Moorcroft had run a shocking 16 or 17 minute TAN and Sheeds said he wouldnt draft or redraft him. A few weeks later Oscar ( who teaches at parade) pushed Gary Moorcroft to 15 minutes by running with him and Sheeds was happy and the rest is history. Even if Dean Wallis had run 28 minutes and cut through the Botanic Gardens, Sheeds would have not delisted him.

I even can enter into TAN mythology. I wanted to beat Choco Williams badly in 1995. I bolted up the hill at midfielders pace but at the top was a spent force. By the shrine I considered cremation. Choco bolted past me and I staggered home. Well a few weeks after I ran a tactical race. I stayed just behind Choco all the way and then used my fast twitch power surge to smash him 50metres from home.

And at GFC in 2000 Barry Stoneham was suspended one weekend. We met at the TAN and we took off. He bolted and I tried to keep up. I killed myself but after the Shrine had to let him go. Barry was a low 10 min 3km run and and an ex 400m champ. When I arrived back to the start he turned to me and asked me why I had started so fast. HA. I was about to ask him the same question. I went home and had a good sleep.

I am sure Richmond has got some cracker times because it is a course you can get used to. They seem to have done heaps of TANS over the years.  It is funny how many clubs have staff members who often win these races. I think Paul Coburn ( physio) used to smash the course

But the main thing is to always remember when an old AFL player says he ran 12 23 for the TAN make sure you ask for some official data.  And all you Essendon and Collingwood guys. I have old old ( dead sea scrolls) records of your TAN times from the 80’s and 90’s. Don’t lie.  I don’t respect or trust old footballers who lie.

September 23, 2007 Posted by | AFL | Leave a comment

Health Club 101 in St Albans

Rebecca and Paul Galea own a great gym in Saint Albans Melbourne.

Excellent equipment, great prices and good people.

Make sure you join up. It is worth it.


101-103 Main Road West


Phone: 03 9310 9155

September 18, 2007 Posted by | Uncategorized | 1 Comment


Soon I will publish an E Book on strength and conditioning programs after a hamstring injury. Specifically soft tissue and not back related etc. One area that seems to cause problems is athletes working too intensely too soon after a muscle injury is diagnosed and taking gambles. Jarvinen’s review emphasizes the need for 3 days immobilization to allow healing as a critical phase. Respecting the stages and phases of healing in soft tissue injury is vital. Some researchers categorize these stages differently. From acute ( inflammatory) up to 7 days to proliferation ( 7 to 21 days) and maturation and remodelling ( >21 days).

Not respecting healing dogma is fraught with danger given that means trying to beat nature. Programs in my e book are based on this dogma. And Jarvinen is very clear about the processes involved.

I was lucky to work in the AFL for 20 years and since 1999 till April 2006 I was operating at approximately half the average games lost for hamstrings in the AFL. I coached sprinters in the 80’s and simply spent a lot of time researching and working this area.

Muscle Injuries: Biology and Treatment: Järvinen
The American Journal of Sports Medicine, Vol. 33, No. 5

This study emphasizes the need to immobilize in the acute phase which as minimum from healing studies should be 3 days.


Even slight use of the injured muscle in this Acute Phase needs to be avoided according to Jarvinen. He also talks about reruptures at the same site if mobilization is too soon. By resting in this phase less scar is put down.


PARADOX: Use it or lose it!

The rest in the immobilization phase allows the scar to get some strength. In fact after 10 days the scar is quite strong

After the immobilization phase is over then active mobilization enhances the penetration of muscle fibres into the scar tissue, limits the size of the scar and aligns the regenerating muscle tissue.

“If immobilization is continued past the acute phase (first few days) of muscle regeneration, the deleterious effects become particularly evident during the remodeling phase of muscle healing”

September 4, 2007 Posted by | AFL, General, Rehabilitation, Soccer, Strength and Conditioning, Tennis, Track and Field, Volleyball Strength and Conditioning | 1 Comment