Friday, May 24, 2013

Vacation week

Sunday night I had ambitious notions of a week of two a days, but a week at home wound up being busier than a week at work. Emma's first birthday Tuesday, Grace's 4th birthday yesterday. Family arriving for a visit today. It was all I could do to drag myself out there once a day, and I didn't even do that Monday. Did get a nice hike around Appleton Farms on Monday afternoon with the whole family, Emma in the backpack. Tuesday, Ben, Grace and I explored the woods/swamp behind our house for a half an hour or so.

Tuesday - 5.94 in 46:09; ran the Ipswich XC course from IHS w/ Kieran, Alex and Mike. Out Linebrook and back on High St.

Wednesday - 8.92 in 58:30 on the roads - Asbury to 1a north to Waldingfield/Goodhue to Highland and home.

Thursday - 7.01 in 46:06 on roads. Cutler loop from home.

Friday - 6.15 in 44:32 on roads and in woods; about 75% on the trails around and in Bradley Palmer.

Still feeling a little tired from:
race effort Saturday?
lyme disease?

Hoping to go long tomorrow AM...

Sunday, May 19, 2013

10 miles with Kieran after church

Kieran met me in Ipswich and we ran the first ten miles of my fourteen mile loop back to my house in just about 75 minutes. Great to catch up and hear all the Cornell news. Inspired by his outlook and wanting to make the most of his 14 weeks before his junior year of cross-country. I'm hoping to get some two-a-days going this week and make a push with the mileage.

Saturday, May 18, 2013

NBB Twilight Meet #2

Drove to Lowell with Aaron and arrived about 6:30. Picked up my number and did an early warmup on the roads around the neighborhoods and over the river; just over two miles in 16 minutes - Aaron's first run in a week!

Saw Jose Ortiz from Whirlaway, Chris Blondin from GBTC (who had already run the 800), Larissa Park from SRR, couple familiar faces of current collegians who I coached against during their high school years (Monica Adler, Joel Hubbard).

Perfect night to run; goal was to run 75's as long as possible and hopefully not slow down too much if/when that became too hard. Aaron was at the 200 calling splits from there and I had the clock at the finish.

First lap was absolutely surreal - I knew it would be plenty fast, but it literally felt like I wasn't even running. Just caught up in the event and everyone else's running. Settled in to 6th place behind a pair of New Balance guys. First lap was a 73 or 74 and felt like I was out for a walk. Of course, I didn't expect that feeling to last very long, and it didn't. It gradually fades away into a variety of different mindsets. First, I was sort of just counting my meters every 400 meters (definitely not thinking about laps to go). I was 4:56 for the first 1600, exactly where I wanted to be. My dream was to run 4:56's for the first 8k, but that was not to be.

Ever so slowly, the goal pace of 75 seconds per lap began to get harder and the idea of maintaining it for 31+ minutes seemed like more of a pipe dream. After all, why should I think I would be able to run a faster pace for 6.2 miles tonight than I ran for 5 miles last Friday night? At 3200m, I came through in 9:54, with a 4:58 second 1600. I knew my pace was getting pretty close to exactly goal pace, rather than under goal pace, like it was for the first 6 laps.

Mentally, I was counting up every 200 meters now (3400, 3600, etc.). I also had the added challenge/distraction of passing lapped runners. We had started the men and women together and there were several women that I lapped three times and a couple (or maybe just one) guys who I lapped twice. Early on, I tried to get around them with minimal effort, by just drifting by on a straightaway, but as the race moved along, my moves were less energy-efficient and I wound up running some curves in lane 2.

4800m - came through right around 15:00 (don't remember this one, but think it might have been 14:59 or 15:00) and 5k in 15:32 (Thanks, Aaron!). Two years ago when I ran 31:28 I ran a 15:38 first 5k (that was Jim Pawlicki calling out splits in '11), followed by a 15:50 second half. Coming through 6 seconds faster than 2 years ago was encouraging, but I didn't feel super great at this point. The next 3800m or so were kind of a holding on, gradually getting slower, but really not wanting to, and not being able to do much about it. I was in 5th place all this time (one of the leaders had dropped out, I think intentionally at some point), 2nd and 3rd were close to each other, and I remained anywhere from 5-15m behind 4th (one of the New Balance guys).

My 6400m split was 20:03ish and 8k was 25:10ish. I knew at that point if I was 10 seconds over goal pace it would take a strong finish to get under 31:28. With three laps to go I tried to surge, but I think it was only in the last 800 that I made up any time. Chris Blondin (who races the 800) complimented me on my final 2 laps afterward, which meant a lot. He told me my final 400m was a 67, which also pleased me. Came through chasing the same New Balance guy who had more than me at the end, but helped me to a PR. Chris and Aaron both had me at 31:19, and the official time posted by the time I was done cooling down with Jose, Larissa and Jordan Kinley (spectating, resting for Burlington next weekend) was 31:20.01! (Just checking results, I realized that I ended up just a little over 2 seconds out of 3rd, which is quite a bit closer than I thought.)

I am thrilled with the result; it was great to have some friendly faces there to celebrate with and encouragement from Aaron, Chris and President Derderian. Would have been great to have my family in attendance, but it is kind of a late start for the kids, and watching Dad run around the track 25 times probably isn't as engaging as watching Cars 2 or reading Olivia.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Last run with Nate

So after we couldn't get together Wednesday (our mini van, which we were letting friends use to move broke down on them), Nate and I managed a last run together before he heads to the ADK's for the summer. I have really enjoyed our training runs together this spring. Talking and running are two of my favorite things, and there has been ample opportunity for both, exploring roads and woods within a ten-mile radius of Gordon.

Today we stuck to a familiar loop around the seminary and talked about summer plans and changes at the college. Throughout the lively discussion of friends leaving the area and unanswered questions about institutional changes (it doesn't sound as interesting in unspecific terms, believe me the conversation was enthralling), the mood was upbeat and I left feeling invigorated and inspired, as is so often the case when we get a chance to bounce ideas off one another.

Covered the 6.56 mile loop in 45:04.

After tomorrow night's 31 minute (and some loose change) 10k, I have the week off to spend time with my family and start resting/training up for Mt. Washington. Emma turns one on Tuesday, and Grace will be 4 on Thursday. At the end of the month, we'll all be heading out to La Vida Base Camp on Lake Clear, NY in the Adirondacks to visit Nate and scout out the landscape for XC pre-season. Ben and Grace will get to try out their new Osprey backpacks that should be arriving in the mail this week!

Thursday, May 16, 2013

2 days before the fastest 10k of my life (I hope)

Legs still a little heavy today, but the warm weather was a big boost!

Out and back from Gordon on Hull to Standley to Common Lane.

6.79 in 46:12.

Wednesday, May 15, 2013

Another beautiful day!

10.01 in 1:05:58. 6:35/mi.

From Gordon down Grapevine to Rubbly, then right onto 22 toward Essex. Left on Bridge Street, right on Sagamore, left on Moulton. Left on 1A, back to Bridge to Miles River to Essex St, to Rubbly to Grapevine and home.

Felt a little tired after yesterday's long run.

Thoughts of a fall marathon.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

longer run

Same fifteen mile loop as the Thursday before last (5/2). Started out around 6:40 and quickly started thinking about sub-6:30's. Just over 13:00 at 2 miles, 25:56 at 4 miles. Ended up finishing in 1:34:22 for 15.02 mi. (6:17-6:18 pace). Last mile along Grapevine Rd. was around 5:40.

Feeling pretty strong for the 10k on the track this Saturday night in Lowell.

Grading scheme: 31:28.57 (A-); 31:15 (A); 30:59 (A+)

Hoping for low winds.

Monday, May 13, 2013

6 miles with Al

From Bennett Center at Gordon, seminary loop in 43:15. Lost satellite reception, but this is almost exactly 6.

Another busy day meeting with students to gear up for next fall.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

Mother's Day

Spent the morning making Heather feel special with some help from Ben and Grace. Breakfast in bed, flowers, plus some praiseworthy work of Ben's from Kindergarten all contributed to making mom's day (hopefully). After church we met my parents at Panera, and then we each got out for our Mother's Day run.

7.01 miles in 46:39. (Cutler loop)

Saturday, May 11, 2013

Saturday 10 mile loop

Warm and humid. Popped the low-light lenses in my Native eyewear and headed out. Normally when I switch to the low-light it means it will rain and I'll end up running with them pushed up on my head. Today I kept them down the whole time and only had a little moisture the last two miles. Started out at 6:43 and ran between 6:30 and 6:40 most of the way. Picked it up a little the last three: 6:29, 6:26, and then a 6:06 at the end. 10.2 in 1:06:18.

Trying to make up my mind about the NBB 10,000m next Saturday night. Would love to get under 31:28 and feel like it would be possible with the right conditions. When I ran 31:28 two years ago at Lowell, it was pretty breezy by the time we went off.

Friday, May 10, 2013

Backshore 5-mile

warmed up with Nate from his house in Gloucester, about a mile and three quarters. Saw a bunch of familiar faces, including my dad on the way to the starting line. Perfect night to run with temps in the 60s and cool breeze along the ocean. Didn't feel amazing before the start and stayed behind a row of people as the gun went off. Talked to Jordan Kinley, who I know has a 2:25 marathon to his credit and he mentioned that he was running Burlington Vermont City in a few weeks. Said he is hoping for 2:28, 2:27 and is able to hold 5:25-5:35 for a long time, but can't go much faster than 5:20's.

After a little bit conservative start (for about 150m), moved out and around and up to the front by the half-mile mark. Went through mile one in 5:01 feeling good. Mile 2 was 5:09 and I could still hear someone behind me, probably Jordan. Mile 3 was my slowest with a couple little climbs and some turns - 5:16. Mile 4 tried to press a little, but wasn't feeling the best - 5:03. Last mile 5:05 for 25:34 gun time. Jordan 2nd in 26:00.

Larissa Park of Somerville Road Runners 4th overall in 27:34!

Nate broke 30:00 (first time since college XC?) with a 29:58. My dad ran 38:30 which he was pleased with. Andrew K. a nice 28:17!

Back to Nate's the long way (1.9 miles) for cooldown. Then enjoyed sausages, chicken and veggies on the grill with friends. Heather came over for the after-race!

Thursday, May 9, 2013

mathematical mind games (predicting tomorrow's race performance)

headed out for an easy 4-mile hull street loop, just keeping in mind that I want to race well tomorrow night.

After two-miles, I started playing around with my pace today and my pace tomorrow and imagined that the closer I was to 7:00/mi. pace today I was, the closer I would be to 5:00 pace tomorrow. At 2 mile, I was 13:45, so that translated to 10:15 for 2 miles tomorrow.

Mile 3 was 19:36 for 15:24.

Mile 4 was 27:27 for 20:33. Makes sense?

If I'm at 20:33 with a mile to go tomorrow (hoping to be a little quicker than that), I will see how close to 5:00 I can finish in. 25:33 would be an "A-" tomorrow night. Wondering if I can get close to 25:17 (that would be the "A" grade) or even 24:59 (A+).

This is what goes on in my head when I am not running fast enough or far enough.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

6 mile seminary loop

Grapevine Road to Rubbly, straight across Essex St. onto Woodbury to Bridge St. to Miles River to Essex to Rubbly to Grapevine back to school. With Nate. 6.02 mi. in 41:18.

Tuesday, May 7, 2013


met up with Nate at 11:45 for a scenic and warm jaunt from Wenham down Grapevine Rd. to Beverly Farms along the coast on 127 thru Endicott College and back Boyles St. to Centerville and up Hull St. 7.73 in 53:01.

Monday, May 6, 2013

back on the road with Nate

Glad to have my training buddy back from his weekend in the Adirondacks!

Headed out for 8.86 in 1:01:17. 6:55 pace. Beautiful weather caught me by surprise, because it was so grey and cool when I came in this morning. Nice time catching up on the weekend's events.

Registered for the Backshore 5-mile this Friday in Gloucester. Ran my fastest 5-mile of 25:17 on this no longer certified course in 2011.

Sunday, May 5, 2013

fastest 10-mile training run ever

It doesn't take a lot to get me fired up about training, but sometimes the timing is just right. Like two summers ago it was a combination of Jim Johnson's blog and Bob Wiles' explanation of how many extra miles a year he could get by adding morning runs.

Now, reading about Eric MacKnight's 11 mile run at 5:50-something pace has been stuck in my mind. Today, we got home from church a little late (11:30) and Ben had a piano recital at 1:00, so the window was small for a ten-mile run.

Normally, I know that if I give myself 70 minutes to cover my 10 mile loop (which is closer to 10 and a quarter miles), I usually can finish faster than that, but today, by the time I got out the door, it was 11:46, and I knew that I would have to be closer to 60 minutes to have time to shower and run across the street to Ben's recital.

I went through mile one in 6:01, and felt good. The first mile is mostly uphill and tends to be one of my slower ones, so that is a quick start. The two-mile split was 11:51, and then the next few miles are pretty flat. Mile 3 was 17:34 (5:43). Mile 4 was 23:26 (5:52). Mile 5 (a little under halfway) was 29:10 (5:44). Mile 6 was 34:58 (5:48). The last four plus miles home are a series of little hills, with more ups than downs, and I have to work a little harder to maintain pace. I have run this loop many times, though, and usually knowing that I am closing in on the homestead makes it easier to keep dropping the pace.

Came through 7 miles in 40:43 (5:45), 8 miles in 46:23 (5:40), 9 miles in 52:04 (5:41).

10-mile split was 57:35 (5:31). Finished up in 58:37 for 10.22. Pretty sure this is the fastest 10-mile training run I've ever done (5:44 pace for 10.22). Sometimes it's nice not having enough time to "enjoy" your run.

This was in the fastwitches.

Oh yeah, and with about a half mile left 'til home, a woman went by me on her bike and said "fifteen miles per hour"; I appreciated the inaccurate encouragement and gasped a "not quite, but, thanks!"

Then I tried to imagine that I was running the last quarter mile of a fall marathon in 60 seconds. I'll settle for the last .2 in 60 seconds.

Friday, May 3, 2013

10 miles in 1:06:26

Sunny and cool. Beautiful day to run in the Fastwitches, even though I was a little reserved until the last couple miles. 6:38 pace overall after finishing up with a couple 6:20's.

Thursday, May 2, 2013

15 miles in 1:35

out on the roads in the adios from Gordon down Grapevine, joined by Andrew S., my top xc runner this fall, for about 3/4 mile, (first mile around 7:00) to Rubbly to Essex (2 miles in 13:25) to Miles River Rd. to Bridge St. (3 mi. in 19:54) to 1A to Cutler Rd. (4 mi. in 26:18; 5 mi. in 32:40) to Asbury to Goodhue to Waldingfield (6 mi. in 38:59) to 1A to Lakeman's to Fellows to (10 mi. in 1:04:05) Sagamore (11 mi. 6:16) to Bridge (12 mi. 6:14) to Essex (13 mi. 6:04) to Rubbly (14 mi. 6:02) to Grapevine(Last mile probably sub-6:00). Lost satellite near the end, but I know it was a little over 15 total. Felt good for the second longer run this week, fresher than I've felt in a few days...

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

new shoes

7.5 with Nate in just over 53 minutes. Ran in new Saucony Fastwitch. Like them.