Monday, April 30, 2012

Week of 4.30.12 - 5.6.12

** New issue of Level Renner  is out now.  If you're not already part of the "Level Legion", click here.**

MON. - 9mi. (trails) -- Carolina Mgmt. North & South.  Backed off just a hair after yesterday's race and felt really good.  Reinforces the Trail vs Road Axiom:  Trails are always much more fun and interesting.  [68:34]

TUE. - 0

WED. - 9+mi. (trails) -- Cinderella got herself a new pair of slippers for the ball. Rosalie complimented me on my "nice cleats".  Since track is out, decided to do some hill repeats in the woods.  Ran in Carolina Mgmt Area again.  I took my space watch just to see how long the hill was in its varied pitch.  Old school Garmin said .23-.24 miles.  It starts out gradual, then increases in slant, then backs down to manageable with the bitch part the last 30 m at the top.  I had planned on, after 4 miles of exploring in the North side,  8 repeats but could only manage 6 of them.  My legs were totally rigged up at the end and I was starting to struggle on the final one.  Probably could've done two more but whatever.  Had to get home and play lacrosse with Mason in the back yard.  My times up the hill were 1:42/1:44/1:41/1:44/1:40/1:38 with easy recovery back down.  This one may not have made me faster but I think it put a little more hair on my balls. [1:09:37]

THU. - 6mi. (roads & trails) -- Tomaquag Trail loop.  I hate Rt. 3 but everything changes once you're in the woods.Legs felt ok, even after yesterday.  Soaked feet from the cow field/trespassing section.   [44:55]

FRI. - 0 - got home after a long day and Mason wanted to fish for stripers.  Cloudy, incoming tide, no wind.  How could I say no?  No miles today (or bass) but many smiles.

SAT. - 8mi (trails) -- after all day conference at URI snuck in some woods action in Great Swamp.  Two key observations: 1.) tons of wildlife in there. 2.) teachers are obnoxious, self-centered, overbearing, and stupid! [59:50]

SUN. - 24mi. (trails) -- parked at Beach Pond and ran Pachaug Trail up to Pharisee Rock.  Wasn't sure of the distance but I thought I could make it there in 90 mins.  1:37 at the top.  I took a few short wrong turns but otherwise was fine.  Kind of tired though.  A bunch of guys on dirtbikes and four wheelers had passed me and were at the top, drinking beers and eating food.  They were probably jealous of my plastic tasting water out of a hose and a Gu, because they couldn't believe I had been running and was going to run back.  Started to get really tired on the return trip.  I ran out of water and had no more snacks.  Brain drain in abundance--missed turns a couple of times and ran a bit longer than necessary.  I was rather crushed when I got back to the boat ramp on the north side of Beach Pond and could see the lot where my truck was off in the distance, yet knew I had some more running to do.  Close to bonking on the way back.  Stupid Garmin and its stupid "auto pause", hanging off my pack, said 22.59 miles so I'm going to go ahead and call it 24.  Banged up but still good, I clearly underestimated the effort and time.  I needed more than a banana and a Gu.  My water pak black holed and was sucked in on itself (I was thirsty).   Pretty sure I've never run for that length of time before. [3:26:58]

TOTALS: 56  miles
Muddy raced moto cross Sunday?
--> a good week and kind of a crazy weekend. A lot of that crazy is spelled "Gazelle".  Congrats to Jeff and his sub 3 in Providence today!! I knew he was going to crush it.  My happiest realization: every run this week was (at least mainly) on trails.  Today though, I definitely bit off more than I could chew-- but it was still fun...until the last 30 mins.  Too many dirtbikes around for my liking, although the guys at the turn around point were amicable.  32 in a weekend is a lot for me.  Next weekend is Shad Bloom 10K which should be fun.  Probably an easy week this week before then.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Week of 4.23.12 - 4.29.12

MON. - 5mi. (road) -- felt pretty great for the first 3 but then almost an epic fail the last 2.  Need a day off. [35:30]

TUE. - 0

WED. - 8.5mi. (road) -- had planned on doing 4 x 1 mile repeats along dirt paths skirting fields in Carolina Mgmt. Area.  I had even mapped it all out pefectly on Map My Run.  When I got there I realized that the truck full of red neck pick ups meant it was turkey season. YEEHAW! No orange so I turned around, totally pissed off.  Couldn't use the track at CHS due to some meet going on so looks like roads.  After throwing a major hissy fit inside the house I changed from trail shoes to regular trainers and headed out to the road with no clue what to do. I used to have MAJOR temper/anger issues but I've quelled that and "matured" the last 6 years.  My emotional rage over something so simple and stupid/insignificant really surprised me.  I was pretty disappointed in myself.  Anyway, I calmed down after the first mile and decided to skip any speed work and just loop around into North Stonington along back roads.  About 3/4 of the way through I got a little upset again when I thought I was missing my marks. It doesn't feel like I'm running that slow!!  Apparently the run is NOT 8 miles.  It turns out it is 8.5.  I KNEW I was running a little harder than 7:30 pace.  A bullshit day turns out better than I thought-----doesn't it ALWAYS when it comes to running?  Therapy for the mind, body, and spirit. [60:07]

THU. - 5.5mi. (road) -- yuck.  Sloppy and brain dead.  I only tacked on the extra 0.5 so I could be back to whole numbers.  [39:22]

FRI. - 0 -- Whatever.  I listened to my body and took a zero.  Mason and I dug holes in the yard and garden instead.

SAT. - 8+mi. (road and trails) -- with Tom, Gazelle, Jonny, and Michael Boumenot (the FNG).  Met at Bradford school and ran down into and around Grills Preserve.  Perfect temps and weather for it.  Probably between 8.5 - 9 somewhere but I'm done with halves.  I hate pushing "." and then "5".  Plus, I have to admit, the complicated addition thing is killing me.  Thus, 8+ it is. [1:05:48]

SUN. - 10mi. (roads) -- "RI State Police 5K Foot Pursuit". Ran this good-sized 5K for the first time ever.  A lot of jarheads and bulging muscles at this one.  Nice day in Gansett, although somehow the wind was kind of in your face both directions on the out and back (how is that possible?!?!).  Ran a solo w/u after some serious stomach issues.  Lined up in front next to Tom, Derek J and Colonel Sanders.  Overall, I feel I ran a good race.  I made the decision to try and stick with Glen Guillemette but he got away from me.  At the 3 mile mark I peeked at my watch and thought I had a chance to go sub 17.  Realized soon after that would not be today. Still a good race and new PR.  5:30/5:35/5:30 - 17:08 and 6th O/A.  I'm so damn close to 16:59 I can taste it!!! Won some nice loot except my Fuelbelt is a small.  My beer belly doth protest.

--> I'm going to go ahead and count this as a back off week.  I was feeling a little mentally and physically blah in recent days.  I enjoyed my group run on Saturday morning and raced well on Sunday.  I'll take it.  I really feel like I'm going to break 17 this year.  However, I don't want to train and race only 5Ks.  The real fun lies in the other stuff (10ks, trail races, etc.)  Keep on keeping on.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Week of 4.16.12 - 4.22.12

MON. - 7mi.  (road) -- legs felt surprisingly good for the day after a race.  Good run at decent pace.  About 30-40 cormorants below the falls at Potter Hill dam.  Suspect that they're choking down herring.  Want to see if I can score a vagabond striper at the highest point up the Pawcatuck River that they can travel.  I've heard of people dusting them there before.  [51:31]

TUE. - 0 -- all day carpentry.  I suck at any angles other than standard 45 or 90 degrees!

WED. - 9mi. (track) -- WHS track with old Italian walkers and several small kids (apparently also banging out some speedwork too) .  North wind made the front stretch tough but able to fly down the back stretch.  Didn't know what to do until I started.  2 x 400, 1 x 800, 1 x 1600, 1 x 800, 2 x 400 w/ 200 recs after the 400s and 400 recs after others).  Ran well (and smart for a change) despite getting sucked into racing a 10 year old on the last 400.  Splits: 77/77/2:47/5:37/2:44/78/76.  Felt good and recovered really well.  [61:26]

THU. - 6mi. (road/trails) a.m. -- ran Tomaquag Trail Loop near home.  Felt great.  Easy run. [45:08] /////  5mi. (road) p.m. -- dropped Mason off at lacrosse practice and busted out a short run through Westerly's North End.  Would hate to live there.  Run sucked.  Legs were tired and nothing felt efficient/effective. [37:44]

FRI. - 5mi. (road) -- waited to run until afternoon (mistake #1) then stopped to see what the leatherbound "thing" was in the road (mistake #2).  It turned out to be something interesting that then presented an interesting moral quandry. Sprinted home about half mile in 2:37 (mistake #3) to tell Mandy.  Run ended there instead of after 8-10 (mistake #4).  [36:44]

SAT. - 16mi. (road & trails) -- left from exit 1 with Tom and Jonny down to North Road then up into Canochet Preserve.  Crossed out down Stubtown Road and picked up yellow trail at Asheville Pond up to Narragansett Trail head.  Fun but tiring climbing back up along rock-littered paths above the pond.  We also ducked into Long Pond trail and scrambled around in there briefly to climb atop the huge rock that overlooks the pond.  As we got back out on the roads towards home, I think Jonny and I were fading and tired.  Tom had boatloads left and easily pulled away.  Good run.  [2:01:XX]

SUN. - 5mi. (road) -- took it easier in the rain around 1200 today.  First mile sucked but everything loosened up and felt fine afterward.  Strange to be raining and yet so sweaty at the same time.  Humidity is a bear. [38:50]

TOTAL: 53 miles

--> a little less than what I had intended going into this week in terms of mileage however I did manage a decent Wednesday workout and a fun longer run on Saturday.  You can't beat scrambling and sweating in the woods.  Plus, as an added bonus, the Bruins won this afternoon in Washington to send it back to Boston for game 7 on Wednesday.  Looks like my blossoming playoff beard stays put.  Also, the "April Vacation" was highly productive around the homestead.  I got a ton o' sh*t done so that's cool.  Also, the immense precipitation today (right now) is highly beneficial to the ever evolving garden so it'll be interesting to see how that plays out too.  Looking forward to next week with no clue what I'm going to do.  I'm toying with racing the fairly popular State Trooper 5K in 'Gansett on Sunday.  Looking at last year's times I would place fairly well.  Hmmmmmm........Stay healthy, my friends.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Buy Muddy A Decent Camera, Please!!

Yeah, I know it is cheesy quality and totally amateur but it still was really fun to do. If you want, feel free to donate to my recently started "Muddy Needs A Nice Camera Fund".  Possibly tax deductible .....

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Week of 4.9.12 - 4.15.12

MON. - 5mi. (road) -- a shorty around home.  Legs felt tired, especially the last 1.5. [37:52]

TUE. - 0

WED. - 9mi. (trails) -- Carolina Mgmt. Area.  I was unfocused and struggling with what to do solo.  The track @ CHS was full (practice and LAX game) so I opted for the woods.  After a 2 mile w/u, I found myself along the turf and corn fields at southern end of the management area.   I did  a weird 4 mins, 2 mins, 1 min, 30 secs, @ (newly revised) T pace with half time recovery for each (2 mins, 1 min, 30 secs).  Shot for 6:00 pace and Garmin told me I was fairly spot on.  Then, I ran into the woods and did 10 x short hill repeats.  The hill was about 100 meters.  I attacked them super hard and dominated them.  First 5 were fine, 6 and 7 were tough, 8-10 were really tough and had me gasping for O2 with such a short recovery.  Good fun and a decent workout although not a killer.  I think I need counterparts to push me "over the edge".  I know the workout was unorthodox and probably not acceptable -- I do what I want.  I may not have gained fitness but I sure as hell didn't lose any.  [66:22]

THU. - 5mi. (road) -- Rushed this one a tad.  All I could fit in due to time constraints.  Legs felt fine, which tells me that yesterday's workout was not hard enough at all.  [35:02]

FRI. - 10mi. (trails w/ a touch of road) -- Devoured Canochet Preserve and then out to Stubtown Road before picking up yellow trail on west end of Asheville Pond and up to trailhead of Narragansett Trail @ Long Pond lot. I ate a lot of gnats.  Great fun, especially exploring the short yellow trail up behind the pond.  A fair amount of ups & downs as well as rock hopping and stutter stepping.  I had to stop and stack some mini rock cairns, as someone else had already beat me to it. Tons of glacial bohemoths out there.   Only downside, I fatigued fast .  Legs felt like rubber. Would've cut someone's throat for a drink of water.  I guess I'm not as big and tough as I thought (last two days).  Apparently 3 straight days of  "not hard" but "not easy" running gets you.  I hate zeroing the day before a race but I'm looking forward to a rest day tomorrow before the Clamdigger.  Dumbass. 

SAT. - 0 -- rest day but covered 'Gansett Marathon with KG.  Gorgeous day. Pretty fun.

SUN. - 11mi. (race) -- "Clamdigger 5miler" .  Ran warmup then lined up front with Tom, Greg, and Jeff Wadecki.  I figured that, given the competition, there would be no repeat victory and I would end up in 4th place.  I think we all went out a tad too fast for the first mile: I was 5:36 but the two leaders were probably just under 5. Settled in behind Tom (in 4th) and as we moved down around the overlook and turned back up into the "hill" of Weekapaug, we took a wrong turn.  When we realized it we corrected ourselves and got back on the course.  Unfortunately, it probably cost us about 10 seconds or so.  Oh well--dumbasses!!  We pushed it back out along Atlantic Ave.  I tried to stick close to Tom but he just pulled away with ease.  I finished up in 29:00 on the nose, 4th place O/A.  My splits:  5:36/5:41/?/?/5:51.  Due to our wrong turn we missed the mile 3 marker but when we crossed mile 4 marker my split was 11:50 (a little too slow).  Hammett, Tom and I ran an easy cooldown west along Atlantic Ave. then headed back and ate some chowdah.  Good fun and gorgeous weather!!!

TOTAL: 40 miles
--> not bad for a down week.  Despite no long run I managed several quality efforts and a somewhat decent race. Covering 'Gansett Marathon on Saturday was super fun (cheezy video to come soon).   Vacation week coming up so time to get back after it and grind out a good one.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Week of 4.2.12 - 4.8.12

MON. - 7mi. (road) -- easyish run.  Legs felt surprisingly good, although some of the more substantial hills were a bit of a bitch. [53:18]

TUE. - 0 -- a ton of little black insects up my nose and in my eyes while out digging holes this evening.

WED. -10+mi.  (road) -- pretty nice out.  Ran with the cows in CT.  Accidentally ran a little more than 10 because, based upon time, I thought I was short slightly.  It was actually 10.23.  Hope I'm cool for tomorrow.  [1:14:39]

THU. - 7mi. (road/bike path) -- "Red Rooster Ramble 5 Miler".  Road trip with Gazelle, Jonny, and Mike all the way to Warren, RI for the first of a 22 part series put on by RIRR.  It turned out to be a relatively flat and fairly fast course.  We all ran well.  South County dominated (the race as well as pizza and beer after).  I missed the 4 mile mark.  As such my splits:  5:43--5:50 (11:33)--5:47(17:20)--mile 4 + 5 (11:17). Finished 2nd O/A in 28:37--easily a PR for 5 mile distance.  It was reassuring to know that I ran pretty hard but still had a little bit left in the tank and ran my last two miles the fastest.  Diana Davis could probably thank me for pulling her out and "leading her" to a new women's course record. Just kidding--congrats to her.  Jonny and Jeff both easily PR'd as well.  Good fun.  I felt a little bad (at first) for riding the shoulder of the guy ahead of me for about a mile (3-4).  He mocked me as I passed by getting right on my shoulder and smiling/giggling.  I laughed but also stated: "Sorry for riding you man.  I hate when people do it to me." then pulled away.  After finishing he immediately asked me: "Were you racing? I was just doing it as a workout!".  Good for you dude.  Your workout earned you 3rd place.  My hard "workout" earned me 2nd.   The next time I come up I'll bring you this sign to wear just so everyone knows: 

FRI. - 3mi. (trails) A.M. - easy shakeout with Mason in Black Farm Mgmt. Area.  I was super stoked that he wanted to go.  Beautiful weather.  Conversation included but wasn't limited to: the best way to remove ticks, what is a rail bed, pooping in the woods, the life cycle of trout, how GPS works, and why runners spit a lot.  School is apparently always in session. He was then amazed to look at where we ran/our route using Garmin & Google Earth when we got back.   A super slow but super awesome run.[30:02] /////// 6mi. (trails) P.M. -- ran in Carolina Mgmt. Area from my parents.  Easy solo fun.  Some type of race or something in there, not sure if for bikes or horses? Saw signs and all the trails were marked.  [45:22]

SAT. - 16mi. (road & trails) -- chilly early morning jaunt with Gazelle and Jonny.  Felt good until Shannock Hill and Pine Hill.  We pushed it in some parts and backed it off a little during others.  Perfect balance.  Picked back up again in Carolina on the trails through to the finish.  Good run.  Followed it up with yardwork, yardwork, and more yardwork.  Sushi rolls and beers as a reward.  I'm REALLY good at rewarding myself.   It's good to be the king. [2:02:XX]

SUN. -6mi. (road) -- ran from home to parents' house for dinner.  Ran pretty well and felt decent. [44:30]

TOTALS: 55 miles
--> a fun and diverse week....just the way I like it.  The race on Thursday night was interesting for placement, location, and time (1830 on a Thursday night?!?!).  Feeling pretty good.  However, looking at the schedule for the upcoming week, I think I've no choice but to cut back and take a vastly reduced week.  A lot of crap going on plus no long run and Clamdigger 5 miler on Sunday.  Going to be fun trying to "defend my 'Digger title".  Hope nobody shows up.