After Cranmore, I took most of the week running easy in an attempt to recover for Carver on Saturday.
Sunday night (race PM) I did a short shakeout and felt pretty good.
Monday I ran twice, easy, and felt worse.
Tuesday I ran twice easy, and felt still worse.
By Wednesday afternoon I was starting to come around, but the backs of my legs (glutes, hamstrings, calves) were still aching and stiff from the downhills at Cranmore.
Thursday I did 11 miles at 6:20 pace, which may have been too much too fast too soon, but I wanted to try going a little faster than I had been able to run earlier in the week. Felt pretty good, it was a cooler cloudy day.
Friday I did 7 and a half on the roads at 7:08 pace.
Saturday drove down to Carver with the whole family plus Aaron B. (babysitter). Nice morning that got pretty warm just before the start. I don't know if it was residual Cranmore or not being used to being on the roadds with this many fast guys, or what, but the result was not what I had hoped.
5:15 pace for 5 miles wasn't bad, but I had really hoped to be somewhere in the mid-25's. 26:15 was only good for 25th place overall. Heather ran a 5 or 6 second PR with a 31:36 and was 2nd CMS woman, 16th or 17th overall, helping them to a 3rd place finish.
From there I launched into a vicious cycle of recovering and racing which yielded some pleasant results:
I also worked Monday-Friday at Gordon College Basketball Camp. My Celtics were the NBA (age 12-14) Champs!
Sunday - 7 miles at 6:47 pace;
Monday - 6 miles at 6:31 pace;
Tuesday - 53:39 for 12th overall on a perfect night at Newburyport. I came through 5 miles in 26:30 (only 15 seconds slower than my 5-mile time on Saturday), and felt like I might be able to maintain. Slowed a little in the second half with a couple cramps which resulted in two miles in the 5:30's, but closed well the last two miles, catching Justin Freeman and almost catching Jose Ortiz (kind of).
Wednesday - 8.19 miles at 7:04 pace
Thursday AM - 5.72 miles at 8:00 pace with Kevin Roberts;
decided around 4 pm to run the Beverly Homecoming 5k.
Brief history at Beverly Homecoming:
1999 - 17:48 (8th)
2000 - 16:29 (2nd)
2002 - 17:22 (8th)
2003 - 17:22 (5th)
2005 - 15:44 (1st)
2006 - 15:27 (1st)
2008 - 16:05 (4th)
2009 - 15:27 (1st)
2010 - 15:25 (2nd)
The 2010 race has stood as my road PR, when I finished 2nd to Tim Richard, who I had beaten the year before. In 2011, we were in Texas, and last year I'm not sure why I didn't run, but I made it over to Lynch Park on a beautifully cool August night for this year's edition.
I warmed up with Jordan Kinley, who I always expect can beat me in a 5k, and saw Tim Richard at the start. He looked fit and I asked him what kind of shape he was in.
"Not very good, " he said.
"Sub-15:30?" I asked.
"Not even close." he answered.
The gun went off and Tim, Jordan and I went to the front, with one other guy for the first three quarters of a mile. It felt like we were moving right along, so I just tried to stay relaxed as we took turns fronting the group or running two and three abreast in the street.
We came through the fast first mile in 4:51. I know the second mile is always 10-20 seconds slower here because of the rolling hills, so that sounded about right for a 15:30-ish finish, which was what I was hoping for. Just before two miles is the biggest hill on the course (which isn't saying much), and I tried to put a little distance on Tim and Jordan here. I came through two miles in 9:59 (5:08 2nd mile) and for all intents and purposes, started my kick. I could hear Tim's footsteps for a stretch on Neptune/Pickman and knew if I could hear him on the driveway into the park that I wouldn't stand a chance, so I just continued to push myself into that discomfort and hope that I was back under 5 minute pace.
I made the turn into Lynch Park and resisted the urge to look back (which is a good thing, because I probably would have slowed if I knew that I was 10-15 seconds up on Tim by that point). Instead, I pounded down the hill and wound my way to the finish in a new road PR of 15:23! Tim was close behind in 15:34 (which is pretty close to sub-15:30 - see comments above), and Jordan was third in 15:45.
I definitely wasn't expecting to run quite so fast, so I was pleased with the outcome. What a difference it made to have company through 2, and then to have their pressure behind me the rest of the way.
Cooled down on the course with Tim and women's winner Larissa Park, who ran 17:14!
Congrats to Team Gloucester ladies (and my wife's new training buddies) Layce Alves and Jenn Brooks, 17:59 and 18:08!
Next up: Hamilton Firefighter "5" Mile this Saturday and then Labor Day: Around Cape Ann 25k or the Goose 7k (haven't decided yet).