Monday: 8 miles - Rome Point trails with Jon Short. This was a good tempo-type run. Jon pulled a Dan and pushed me faster than I normally go for a couple of miles. We slowed it down once we turned around on the beach at the tidal stream - too high to cross. A really nice day to be out there. Total time: 57 minutes.
Tuesday: 3 miles - Calf Pasture Point alone. My body was telling me take a zero, but when I went outside on my lunch break, I couldn't resist doing something on this sunny crisp day. I decided to run with my phone to take pictures. When I reached the beach, the tide was really high, and the wind off the water was creating waves on the bay. There was literally no sand to run on, but I thought I would see what the tidal stream looked like (a river). I turned around and slowly made my way back. Untimed.
Wednesday: 12 miles - Quonset Bike Path workout with Mt View roads and Calf Pasture Point beach and road cooldown. My goal today was to run 1x3 miles sub 18 minutes. A few weeks ago I did this in 17:57. The day couldn't have been nicer - mid 50's, sunny, and only a light breeze. I ran the the length of the bike path from my car as a warm up (about 2.5 miles) and then got to work. I felt loose on the warm up, but my legs were lacking freshness, and my confidence wasn't as high as I hoped. My first mile was 5:58. Right on pace. My second mile was a frustrating 6:08. I always have a slow 2nd mile when I run 3 miles/5K. I still thought I could salvage my time by finishing strong on the last mile. I clocked in at 6:00 for a 18:06 total. I was slightly disappointed overall, but it wasn't far off of what I was looking for, and my legs were not 100%. I returned to my car for water and to check email and then headed out on my cooldown. I ran a loop of roads through the Mount View section of NK, before reaching the beach and running to the tidal stream. I then looped back via the Calf Pasture Point road to my car for a nice 6 miles. Lot's of people out today enjoying the perfect weather. Total time: 1:28:11.
Thursday: 14 miles - Charlestown Breachway out to Matunuck beach with the return on roads. I had today off so that I could watch my daughter for the day. She did have preschool for a couple of hours in the morning, so after drop off, I decided to go for a two hour run. I parked at the town beach parking lot and then ran the road out to the breachway. I was happy that I would be running west to east on the beach, as there was a strong SW wind. Rounding the corner onto the beach I instantly felt warmer. I was having trouble finding firm sand, but the wind pushed me along. I enjoyed the solitude, watching the birds and the decent surf. I wasn't sure how far I would get on the beach as there are a couple potential roadblocks. The first is in Green Hill. There is a rather large house with a manmade pile of boulders in front of it. The tide was rather high. As I approached, I could see the water reach the rocks, but it looked like there might be a chance to sprint by. Determined to stay on course, I went for it. I only made it halfway before the ocean rushed in and soaked me up to my shins. I cursed at the house, and then reached the other side. My soaked shoes (Free Runs) dry quickly, and my wet feet were only a distraction for a minute or so, because of the next roadblock, also in Green Hill. This one looked impassable, but as I got closer, I noticed that I could safely and dryly skirt along side a concrete wall. Now I was on the stretch of beach in front of the Trustom Pond NWR. Earlier this year I had to stop here as they had the entire beach to the LOW tide line roped off for the piping plovers and least terns. This time of year you can exercise your State of RI right to access of the shoreline below the mean high tide. I did feel guilty when I had to pass by a large flock of gulls that flew off. Sorry. The next possible roadblock was the Card's Pond breach. I've seen this salt pond connected to the sea as a raging river, a stream, and not connected at all. Since my shoes were wet, I figured that if I had to get wet I would, unless it was too deep and quick. Luck was on my side as the pond wasn't quite connected to the ocean this time. I then passed another large flock of gulls (mostly great black-backed) that began to fly off, and then decided I wasn't a threat, and returned. I was pretty excited to now be running on a stretch of beach I had never run or walked on. I had only one more obstacle before reaching Matunuck. There was a large house (or 3 houses?) with a manmade structure in front that the ocean was reaching. This was before Roy Carpenter's Beach. Having no previous experience with this hazard, I was nervous, but there was a lull in the wave action and I made a mad dash for it. Now I was on the last stretch of beach before a massive rock wall in Matunuck that would end my beach run for the day. I tried accessing the road from a parking lot, but it was fenced in for the winter so I had to backtrack to the SK Town Beach and find my way out from there. I then began the rather unexciting road portion of my run. The scenary on Card's Pond Road is nice, but the headwind was bone chilling. I turned briefly onto Moonstone Beach Rd, before spending a few miles on Matunuck Schoolhouse Rd. I reached Charlestown Beach Rd sooner than I projected, so I continued on and ran around the Blueberry Lane neighborhood. I finished up in 1:52:26. I had ample time to clean myself up and get a coffee and a scone at the bakery I hadn't been to since college. I then picked up my daughter from school, took her out to lunch, and then the aquarium for a really awesome day off.
Friday: 11 miles - Rome Point trails and beach alone. I wasn't sure what sort of run I would be in the mood for. Yesterday my legs were tired the entire time on my long run, but today they were in decent shape. I again was drawn to the idea of running on the beach, so I went to Rome Point. It felt warm in the parking lot - 51 degrees, full sun, and protection from the wind. As soon as I veered off to the north, I was greeted with a very chilly wind. At the point, the wind was hollering and miserable. I wasn't too excited about running the beach anymore. But I warmed up on the single track through the woods and over the hill, and was ready for the beach portion. Heading towards the bridge I could feel the wind push me from behind. Right before turning around I went by a gentleman walking in the opposite direction who looked horribly cold. Yikes. Upon turning around, I was greeted with as strong a wind I think I have ever run in. I passed the man again and mumbled something about how it was a little windier this direction. At times I felt like I was running in place. If the beach was sandier I would have been steadily stung by blowing sand. I tried running with my shoulder turned into the wind. Can't say that helped much. I eventually made it back to the woods and had a really fun run the rest of the way. I felt fast without trying. Total time: 1:17:46.
Saturday: 16 miles - Burlingame trails with Muddy and Jeff. This was the first organized winter long run of the year. We met up at 7AM at the picnic area. It was very dark on the drive down, but once we hit the trails, there was adequate light. Chilly start - 29 degrees, and it never warmed up that much (36 at the finish). We ran Vin Gormley with a 3 mile out and back diversion down the North South Trail to the campground entrance and a 2 mile extension around the old north camp. The plan was to stick to the non-hunting side of Burlingame as it was the first day of deer muzzle-loader season. After reaching Poquiant Brook, we decided we were up to the challenge of dodging bullets on the hunting side. On Schoolhouse Pond trail, we ran by a hunter luring in deer by smoking cigarettes. On Sammy C's, we saw another one that looked a little grumpy. It was a lot of fun running with these guys, as we all have similar running abilities, and had plenty of running to talk about on our journey. The trails were in awesome shape two weeks before Lil' Rhody. Our pace was perky from the start, and despite the heavy mileage the last few days, my legs felt terrific throughout. It was nice to see so many non-hunters back in the parking lot (mtn bikers and runners). Total time: 2:01:10.
Sunday: 0 - day of rest. Muddy and Jeff made me feel like a freak running every day. Hiked Trustom Pond in the afternoon with the family. A birder told me there was a northern shoveler off of Osprey Point, but I couldn't find it.
Weekly Total: 64 miles
Last Week: 64 miles
Year to Date: 2076 miles