Thursday, August 29, 2013

Schonning 5K

August 28, 2013

17:31 (on a slightly short course), 4th of 105, 1st in age group.  Results here.

Arrived about 45 minutes early, and went for a 1.5 mile warm-up with Mike B, FiveK, Matthew, and Jonny E.  Since the pre-race speech was about an hour long, I tuned out and missed that the starting line had changed this year, but it was somehow still a certified course.  Interesting - I'm guessing they pushed the turn around cone further down on Margin to accomodate.  We'll see, it's time to rock.
Start of the 2013 Schonning 5K:
l-r: Nick (3rd place), barefoot guy, Muddy (2nd), FiveK (1st), me (4th)

Mile 1:  One of my favorite parts - the police part the "Red Sea", or in this case busy High Street in downtown so you get to run right down the middle of the road.  There is a guy running barefoot ahead of me; it sounds noisy and painful each time his feet slap the road.  After about 1/4 mile and jockeying for position, I settle into 6th place behind Muddy, where I remain for the rest of the 1st mile, net downhill to the river.  5:25!
Neat pic of a lot of us "top 10" finishers, about 1/4 mile in on High St

Mile 2: A very short hill leads us up from the hill to the turnaround cone.  The turnaround cone is the same place as last year - right near the entrance to the cemetery.  How is the course going to measure out to 5K?  Focus on the race.  Turning onto Clark Street, I passed the guy who was leading the race for the first mile, and move into 5th.  Mile 2 pace 5:50; too much of a drop-off, even figuring that Mile 1 was net downhill and Mile 2 net uphill.
Finishing up in front of the Y

Mile 3:  On Elm Street, I pass a high school age guy that looks familiar, and I'm now in 4th following Muddy and Nick Celico (FiveK is ahead of them out of my sights).  Even the small hills have me huffing and puffing, and I've slowed down more than I would like to finish Mile 3 at 5:55.
A large WTAC turnout

I crossed the finish line at 17:31, happy with a fast finish but knowing something didn't add up with the course length.  My GPS shows 3.07.  I have a quick talk with SNERRO inside their van.  They initially said they started right where the USATF certification map shows, measurements from crosswalks, etc, but the problem is that it's a 2007 certification and the crosswalk they're citing didn't exist back then.  After the awards, the head of SNERRO told me he had found the true starting point, and that tonight's race probably measured a 3.05.  Oh well, fun local race, fun time, let's accentuate the positive:

  • Great WTAC participation!  It's always fun to see so many of our teammates.
  • Matthew killing it in 18:33 (previous PR of 19:01)!  Even with an adjustment for the slightly short course, he still would have dipped into the 18s for a PR.
  • Tommy 5K with the overall win.
  • About a dozen WTAC runners placing in their age group.

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Weekly Log 26-Aug to 1-Sep-2013

Well, I did it:  I signed up for my most grueling race to date - the FirmMan Half Ironman on Sep 8.  Plunked down more than two Benjamins for some "fun" in less than two weeks:  1.2 mile ocean swim, 56 mile ride from Narragansett to Westerly and back via the Charlestown hills, and then a half-marathon.

I did my only Half Ironman in 2011, and finished it in just under 6 hours (5:58:37), but had a real tough time on the bike especially, and for the next few days I had pain and ailments I previously didn't know existed.  Let's hope 2013 is a new chapter.

3+.  Easy post-work run through Champlin Glacier Park.  Since when are there Strava segments in here?  "Moraine Coaster Up" - must be the work of Jonny Miles - is he baiting me? :)

Tuesday: 0
Alarm went off at 4AM for a run.  Heard the downpour and went back to bed.  Gonna have to "man up" as cooler and wetter weather arrives.

5 miles in the morning.  Easy run through Misquamicut, including running on the beach.  Very quiet on the 1st day of school.
6 miles.  Schonning 5K.  See separate write-up.

24 miles ride/run brick with FiveK.  Wind a tailwind, almost took the bait to join him on an Atlantic Ave segment, but wanted to save something of my legs for a long run the next morning.  He rode 24mph on that segment.  Good ride overall, but sad to see it getting darker earlier and earlier and summer coming to an end.
 3 miles.  Immediately transitioned from bike to run to simulate upcoming tris and mitigate that "Gumby" feeling of rubber legs.

23 miles.  With time approaching for my fall marathon, plus trying to get in long rides for my Half Ironman tri, plus helping Matthew train for Surftown, it's getting hard to find time to fit in my own long run training.
On a Friday work-from-home day, swapped out my 2-hour commute for long run time.  Ran through downtown, and then up the hills on Narragansett Ave, and out 91 to Dunn's Corner-Bradford Road.  Hadn't run this section of 91 along Chapman Pond (trivia point - Westerly's largest freshwater body) since the marathon from Westerly Y to Narragansett Pier back in '06 (3:13, in case you were wondering).

Wound through Wahaneeta Preserve to get to quieter South Woody Hill Road, before running the last 10 miles or so along the coast through Weekapaug, Misquamicut, and Avondale.  Target pace 6:50s, which I held to most miles except hills and trails.  Last 2-3 miles was a real mental challenge running solo to keep going and at 6:50s pace.  Probably my longest and fastest non-stop training run ever.  23.1 miles, 2:39:17, 6:52 pace.

51 miles.  Longest training ride to date, with FiveK.  Nostalgic ride for me, up into and through Richmond, where I lived for 15 years during my childhood/early adulthood.  Rode through the Charlestown hills for the last time before FirmMan, and then Shannock Hill in Richmond.  First 45 miles were non-stop; the iced coffee stop at Dave's Coffee was a refreshing break before finishing 51 on the day.

13 miles.  Matthew's longest run.  This route picked by him had a little of everything:  trails, barefoot beach, hills, and flats.  The route was to simulate distance and time, so varying up the route kept it interesting.  Riyan Lennon joined us for a short part of the beach run, as did a flock of small birds that kept flying ahead of and landing right in front of us.

Weekly mileage:
Run:  51
Ride:  75
Swim:  --

Week recap:
After a mid-week race and monster weekend ride and run, I'm not embarrassed to admit that I am beat!  Next week will start consecutive race weekends, with one of my toughest coming up:  Firmman Half Ironman.

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Weekly Log 19-Aug to 25-Aug-2013

4 miles.  Downtown Westerly/Pawcatuck evening run at 7:30 pace.

6 miles.  Battle of Stonington 5K.  80 degrees.  18:04, 8th overall of 244.  1st in age group.
One of my favorite races that I try to make every year, and a culmination of the Stonington Fun Run series.  While I love the race, the location, and catching up with all the WTAC runners, I was disappointed with my own performance on several facets, including foolishly stopping at the wrong line until race officials yelled to me to keep going, and my own little meltdown after the finish.  Grow up, train harder, move on.  Tomorrow's another day.

1 mile. Final Westerly fun run of the year.  5:15 mile run on the road with many turns.  Yeah, I'm happy with that time, especially against a 5:10 track mile PR.
I like this pic of finishing up the mile w/Jonny right on my heels
 18 miles.  Evening ride w/FiveK out to Bradford and back 216 through Charlestown, followed by a sprint on Atlantic into the wind.  Tiring, but great.

5 miles.  445 Club.  Five of us trekked down to the Weekapaug Breachway in the dark for a loop through Weekapaug, out Atlantic, and then back on the beach for a nice run at low tide along the shore.  Finished up with a dip in the ocean - no jellies encountered today.
6 miles. Final Groton Fun Run of the season. Ran moderately hard on the trails, but not all out. 1st mile with Josh Harwell; finished up with Jonny Eckel. 6:34 pace. Then redeemed my Paul's Pasta gift certificate from Niantic Bay 10K age group win - it only covered about 1/10 of the meal, but it was a good dinner on the water with the Eckel family and a carafe of wine.

47 miles. FiveK wore me out on this one. He strung together hill after hill: Kings Factory Hills, Shumunkanuc, Chase Hill, Potter Hill. Heading back into coastal Westerly, we tried the Strava segment on Atlantic Ave eastbound - into the wind at a paltry 16mph. After a fantastic iced coffee break (I need the sugar and the rest - thanks Tom!), we went Atlantic westbound with the wind, over 20mph the whole stretch, but somehow Strava robbed us by assigning Tom 7.0mph and me 4.4mph! Go figure. Great ride and workout regardless.

10 miles. Local mid-morning run after a lazy sleep-in. Ran the first 4.5 miles with Matthew. After 1 mile we ran into Sam Adams, and ran the next 2 miles or so with him out Links Passage to Rock Ridge. He continued on separately for his own 10 miles - I say he's good for OCY Tri; he says the jury is still out.
3 miles. Barefoot run with Matthew from Old Town Beach out to Weekapaug Breachway and back. Joined up with Mike B for part of the run.
1/4 mile. Finally got a swim in the ocean. Saw only two big purple jellies, lots of little pieces of jellyfish. Head lifeguard said they're dying out. I won't shed a tear. First time in a few weeks that I didn't feel itchy coming out of the water.

Weekly totals:
Run:  35
Bike:  65
Swim:  0.25

Weekly recap:
Good week overall with lots of variation.  Have one more race-free weekend coming up on Labor Day weekend that I'll have to get some good bike and run training in, as after that I head into three consecutive weekends of longer races.

Monday, August 12, 2013

Weekly Log 12-Aug to 18-Aug-2013

3 miles.  Klamath Falls, OR.  Easy recovery run.
Along today's run.  Yeah, it's real ugly here, and
I'm missing my office cubicle in the concrete jungle of Beantown.
These two guys spooked me on
this morning's run.

Today's fun activity:
white-water rafting

24+ miles.  Beautiful sunny morning in southern Oregon for a long run.  6 miles dirt trails, balance mixed paved trails and roads.  A few miles into the run, I encountered a cattle rancher walking towards me.  Sensing I was no longer on public access paths, I was ready for a "no trespassing on my land" speech, but he was courteous and helpful with directions.
Next I ran alongside a "small lake" which looked like it might be fun to run around, until I saw a sign saying that Upper Klamath Lake is Oregon's largest at 90,000 acres.  90,000!  Seriously!  Everything is massive here.  The ranches here look like they could be measured in square miles instead of acres.
Final 10 miles run inside the sprawling Running Y Ranch, including some tiring hill climbs and desolate trail runs.  Took a wrong turn on a trail and ended up further out than I intended and all of a sudden my watch was showing 20 miles and I still had to get back.  Oops!   [3:01:23, 7:29 pace]

500 yards freestyle laps.

3 miles. Westerly Fun Runs - week #10, final week of full 5K.  18:30.  One of my slower times of the season, but given running 24 miles previous day and 4 hours intermittent sleep on red-eye flight, I'll take it.

Thursday:  0
Needed rest day.

6 miles.  Groton Fun Run, held on trails at Bluff Point State Park.  Jana, Matthew, and I all ran the 3.5 trail run, then caught up with fellow WTAC runners, including Les and Pard (they took off before the beer, wine, and food).  Took 2 Strava CR segments tonight, including a 0.8 mile segment at 5:13 pace.  Yes, it was downhill, but still psyched!

Blew off the 445 Club earlier in favor of sleep.  I'm sure I'll hear about that!

Break along beautiful
countryside in Griswold, CT
47 miles.  CT hills ride w/FiveK, who asked me to include some "hills" in today's ride.
Early on we hammered the short 1.7 mile section of Route 1 from Greenhaven to North Main, average 23.9 mph, good for 11th of 110 on Strava.  That left me beat heading into the North Stonington hills.
Average speed of 17.7 mph doesn't reflect the toughness of the hill climbs.  Cossaduck Hill!!!  OMG, that one is brutal and humbling!  Average grade of 9%.
After Cossaduck, we continued up through Griswold up to 165, past Buttonwood Farms, into Voluntown, and back 49.  No time for photos at Crutch's today, as we continued all the way back 49 and stopped for an iced coffee at Ryan W's place, where we chatted with him for a bit.  Monster ride for me!

7 miles.  When you go on a trail run led by Crutch, be prepared for some rugged, technical terrain.  On a previous trail run a few months back, he had me on exhausted ascending Lantern Hill via trails I had never used.  Today, it was north on Narragansett Trail from Green Falls, west of the dam, one of the crossover trails eastbound, and eventually back along Dinosaur Caves to Green Falls Road.
Ran into more spiders (literally) than desired, but all good trail running, with the possible exception of the crossover trail which was quite overgrown.  Good stuff.

Weekly totals:
Run:  45 miles
Bike:  47
Swim:  0.25 miles

Week highlights:

  • 24 mile run
  • Massive ride w/FiveK
  • Getting back onto trails - NO DEERFLIES!
  • Earning two Strava CRs (Bluff Point)
  • Uploading my Oregon running, and finding I won a few Strava segments there as well.  This one below (elevation is obviously off) is so far away from RI that I figure it's safe from other WTAC'ers, even Galoob, for a while:

Seaside, OR CR

Wednesday, August 7, 2013

Weekly Log 5-Aug to 11-Aug-2013: Running with Pre

Monday:  0

10 miles.  8 miles solo, final 2 miles with Jana on promenade.
Site of today's run
4 miles of today's run was on sand along
Pacific Ocean.
Hope some WTAC Atlantic Ocean miles
were logged back home as well

Razor clams, dungeness crabs, and sand dollars ruled
the beach today.  Crab tasted good on my dinner plate as well.
7 miles:  4.5 solo in AM, 2.5 w/Matthew in PM, with a few miles of family hiking in between.
Historic Hayward Field was locked up
Got to run Pre's Trail instead

Another section of Pre's Trail

Nice signs and maps along the route
Matthew along today's hike at Sweet Creek Falls

12 miles.  Most of run along Riverfront Trail System, a mix of paved and dirt trails.  7:23 average pace.  Last four miles:  6:37, 6:40, 6:30, 6:02.
Pre's Rock:  a tribute atop a climb of twisty, curvy, dangerous roads -
I could imagine his car accident happening.
Runners still leaving tributes of running shoes and bibs
38 years after his untimely death.

Along today's run - is Crutch out running here today?

Afternoon:  Hiking in Redwood National Park, northern California.  The unsolicited feedback from the teenage boys changed from "This trip is so lame" to repeated cries of "This is so awesome" as they climbed through, around and a few feet up the massive redwoods.

10 mile hilly coastal loop run solo, average 7:21 pace.  Followed by 5+ miles of family hiking, day 2 in northern California:
Redwood National Park, northern CA
This redwood tree behind Mark must be 15' in diameter
and 300' in height

The fog gives an eerie Jurassic Park feel, which actually
parts of it were filmed in this national park
End of the today's trail:  a cool and desolate
vantage point on the Pacific Ocean
I made it.  Now for the 1,100 foot ascent back over switchbacks ...
 1/4 mile.  Finished the day swimming laps in hotel heated outdoor pool.  I am beat.  Matthew and I walked to the beach, and waded in just a few feet.  Now I understand why I haven't seen a swimmer yet in the ocean out here - the ocean here feels just as cold as the Atlantic Ocean at Misquamicut did on Memorial Day.  Brrr!

5 miles.  Easy 8:04 pace on a shorter run, as my legs can still feel yesterday's activities.
Oregon Caves National Park

200' underground

6 miles easy on paved trails.
4 miles hiking.  View from Garfield Peak (8,060'), looking down on
Crater Lake

1/4 mile lap swimming with Matthew.

Weekly totals:
Run:  50 miles
Bike:  --
Swim:  0.50 miles

Week recap:
First time I ran a 50-mile week in months.  Loving the variety of runs and adventures on this week of family vacation.