Sorry to rip off the old I Lovermont slogan, but wanted to express how much I've enjoyed being out of work for the past 11 days.
Wednesday the 28th was my last day in the office and I spent almost 2 hours of it in the woods, exploring trails and trying to get Loon-ready.
Thursday the 29th I did 12 on an out and back that is quickly becoming my favorite run from home. Up Highland/Arbor Street to the center of Wenham, right on 1A toward Beverly, right onto Cherry Street, left on Cedar, which runs past the back of Wenham Lake and features a new short stretch of sidewalk/bark mulch trail, out to Rte. 97, where I head north to the Danvers/Topsfield Rail trail. I went south on the trail on Thursday, turned around at 6 miles and came back the same way. 6:27 average pace. After the run, we headed to New Jersey for one night at Heather's parents' house.
Friday the 30th Heather and I ran 7 miles together on the hilly roads around her parents' house in Long Valley, NJ. Then we packed up, said goodbye to Bear, and drove the 2+ hours to Lancaster, PA, to visit my brother Alex, his wife, Chloe and their daughter Maisie.
Saturday we all spent the day at Dutch Wonderland in Lancaster with lunch at the Lancaster Brewing Co. Great to see both my brothers and their families. Thanks to my mom and dad for making the trip possible.
(Week total = 61.26 miles)
Sunday we drove back to Long Valley and I squeezed in a quick 9-spot at 6:18 pace (including an 8:19 first uphill mile).
Monday we drove back to MA and ran late afternoon. I headed out on the same route as the previous Thursday, but knew I wouldn't have as much time. I was a little slow from the harder, hilly run Sunday, a day in flip-flops on Saturday, and a lot of time spent sitting in the car. I was running right around 7:00 pace as I crossed an intersection on rte. 97. I glanced to my right and noticed a runner approaching the intersection, turning to go the same way as me. I accelerated slightly and wondered how he would respond. Sure enough, a hundred yards later, I heard footsteps coming up on me. I stepped to the right, off the sidewalk, and a young (high school?) kid with headphones on came huffing past. I tucked back in behind him and wondered how long he would maintain the pace as we headed into a little climb on 97. I had just started to plot my explosive response, when he turned down a street to the right and removed himself from the competition I had started in my mind. (I've since run by the spot 3 more times, awaiting the rematch.)
Tuesday I ran down to Bradley Palmer State Park and met up with former Ipswich distance runner and recent Middlebury graduate Greg Krathwohl for an hour/8 miles on the trails. Greg is interested in getting into some mountain races and I'm hoping to a.) see him at Loon and b.) recruit him for CMS. He ran 4:26/9:36 in high school, then ran 4 years of XC, 2 of track at Middlebury. This fall he finished 8th at DIII NE's and 16th at Nationals for All-American. With the 3 miles there and back, I logged a little over 14 in 1:45.
Wednesday I ran the loop version of my new favorite run, taking the rail trail north to topsfield and then running home by way of perkins row, topsfield road and asbury st., past the topsfield bradley palmer entrance. 12.46 miles at 6:12 pace
Thursday ran ten-mile loop from home, followed by 6 x 100m? strides on the driveway/road
Friday ran 10 in the morning with Heather, while my mom watched the girls; then did 5 more in the evening, marking out the Kupenda 5-mile race course with Aaron Baldwin.
Saturday helped a bit at the race, then fished briefly in Gull Pond with Ben, Grace and Emma. Ben had a baseball game at 11, which was his best showing of his young career. After the game, I did an extended version of the rail trail loop (13.34 at 6:19 pace). Dinner with friends from our small group at church at the Hart House in Ipswich - adults only. Sesame Crusted Tuna rare - wish I took some MacKnight food photos - and bread pudding for dessert. Then 6 of us walked the mile loop from the Hart House past the high school after dinner.
(83.08 miles for the week)
Yesterday (Sunday) did 10 out and back on the rail trail run at 6:29 pace.