Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Weekly Log 10-24-11 to 10-30-11

Monday: 11 miles - Rome Point trails alone.  This run was identical to the run last Monday.  I was keeping the pace easy, but my times were fast.  Perfect running weather.  Total time: 1:15:31. 

Tuesday: 13 miles - Saunderstown hilly roads 8M and Rome Point trails 5M alone.  My original plan was to run all roads, but I couldn't stomach that much pavement.  The weather was really nice, even though it was a tad windy at times.  I started getting tired only 8 miles in, but the woods helped maintain alertness.  My last mile felt great for some reason.  Total time: 1:39:37. 

Wednesday: 11 miles - Quonset Bike Path workout with Calf Pasture Point warm up/cool down.  I thought that today might be a rainy day, and I would possibly take a zero or do an easy run.  It stayed dry, so I decided to give my normal reverse ladder workout a shot.  I've run alot of miles in the last 7 days, so I wasn't going to be surprised to be a tad slow.  My warm up was just that - I was shivering in the cool air - and it was faster than usual.  I reached the bike path and began my 2 mile sprint.  I try not to look at my watch too much, but I allow a peek at the 1 mile mark - 6:02.  I felt like I was faster.  I pushed it hard the last quarter mile and finished up in 11:53 (5:51 2nd mile).  I was pleased with this.  After a 3 minute recovery, I did 1 mile.  I felt really fast at the start, slow in the middle, and fast at the end - 5:53 result.  Acceptable.  At this point I'm very tired, and I'm not looking forward to the 800.  I was able to muster a snappy finish as I passed a woman rollerblading from behind - 2:51.  Fine.  The 400 seems so short after the longer sprints, I just try to go as fast as possible and then hold on at the end as I'm usually slowing down - 78.  Good.  Overall, things went better than expected.  The cool down was filled with bird activity - an interesting colored red tail hawk, a close great blue heron, yellow rumped warblers, the first returning brant for the winter, large unidentifiable sandpipers, and crows acting like gulls in the low tide mud flats.  The workout and the miles caught up to me near the end, and I was happy to finish.  Total time: 1:21:14. 

Thursday: 0 - Muddy told me to take a day off. 

Friday: 11 miles - Rome Point trails with Dan.  48 degrees, but sunny in the middle of the afternoon.  Dan pushed the pace as he usually does for miles 2-5 and then I took over from there trying to maintain it.  We had to make a long leap over the tidal stream which was fun.  This was my fastest time on this course to date: 1:14:14. 

Saturday: 6 miles - Shumunkanuc Hill roads alone.  I ran after my wife got back from her 6 mile trail run in the morning.  The wind was really picking up, and at 38 degrees, it felt very raw out.  My plan was to do an easy, untimed run,  but the roads around my house are not easy, and I ended up running fast.  I felt strong on the hills.  After, my son helped me stack wood on our covered front stoop, before the rain began. 

Sunday: 12 miles - Shumunkanuc Hill to Arcadia roads.  I ran from my house to my in-law's in the afternoon.  My goal was to get in a decent run.  It was cold (40 degrees) and very windy.  The challenge was going to be the headwind that I would face almost the entire time on my south to north course, especially in the open areas like the turf fields.  I mapped it out online and made note of a few of the early mile markers.  This is usually a bad idea, as I end up racing myself.  This was the case again as I breezed through an easy first mile in 7:05.  The race was on, and I ran a rather hard pace the rest of the way.  Despite the head wind, I was at 21:00 at 3 miles; right about the spot my family passed me in the car, double checking I didn't want to bail and hitch a ride with them.  The wind was horrible by the high school and the turf fields, but I still hit 4 miles at 28:00.  There was shelter from the winds the next couple of miles, but I didn't know where the mileage markers were, so I had no idea if I was keeping up my effort.  I dashed through Hope Valley and then up Arcadia Road.  Again, I couldn't tell how I was doing, but my pace felt quick.  My legs finally tired of the pavement the last 3/4 of mile.  My total time was 1:21:45 (11.88 miles) for a 6:52 pace into the wind.  I was pretty happy with the effort and was able to immediately replace chromium at my in-laws. 

Overall: Strong week.  I'm working harder on normal runs hoping for a fast Lil' Rhody Runaround in a couple of weeks. 
Weekly Total: 64 miles
Last Week: 63 miles
Year to Date: 2012 miles - surpassed my year goal of 2000 this week!

Monday, October 24, 2011

Weekly Log 10-17-11 to 10-23-11

Monday: 11 miles - Rome Point trails alone.  This was a great run.  I thought I would be slow a day after the 5K, but I had really fast times at the usual places I check.  Total time: 115:33. 

Tuesday: 11 miles - Rome Point trails with Dan.  I repeated the same run as yesterday, but we took it easier.  My legs were feeling tired by the end.  Total time: 1:22:50. 

Wednesday: 0 - I was watching the radar hoping for a lull in the rain.  When I decided to go for it, the rain picked right back up in intensity and I bailed on running. 

Thursday: 11 miles - Quonset Bike Path workout with Calf Pasture Point warm up/cool down alone.  It was obnoxiously windy on this day.  I knew my times might be a little whacky.  I was very happy with my effort.  2 mile/1 mile/800/400 12:16/5:55/2:56/75.  I got really wet trying to jump a tidal stream on the beach.  I miscalculated and paid for it.  Total time: 1:23:24. 

Friday: 17 miles - Burlingame trails with some roads mixed in.  I ran in the crisp morning air.  I wanted to run forever, but my legs were tired, and I had trouble keeping up a decent pace the last 3 miles.  It was still a really great run, and I saw zero humans.  Total time: 2:10:30. 

Saturday: 8 miles - Stoddard dirt roads alone.  After a fun rehearsal dinner the night before, I got in an early chilly run before the wedding.  I ran up hill to the German Sheppard house, and then looped and explored other roads.  Total time: 1 hr. 

Sunday: 5 miles - Stoddard dirt roads alone.  Cold, but with no wind I was fine.  I just ran a loop of the neighborhood, this time going up the north side (Tigola/Rice Brook rds).  Not as steep, but longer.  I let me legs go as fast as they wanted on the steep descents.  Total time: 35 minutes. 

Weekly Total: 63 miles
Last Week: 45 miles
Year to Date: 1948 miles

Monday, October 17, 2011

Westerly Run for the Pumpkins 5K

Sunday I ran a small local 5K.  I've been looking for a race I could jump in, and this one fit into my and my family's schedule.  My dad told me that his running club was involved this year, and they were hoping for improved turnout.  The course is not flat, and there is a significant hill during the 2nd mile.  Not a course to go for a PR, but that's what I found myself doing nonetheless.  My goal, based on recent workouts, is to run a 18:30 5K before the end of the year.  I didn't think I would do that in this race, but I knew that if I ran hard, I could possibly win, and would set a PR.  What I didn't expect was the wind factor.  I knew it was windy, but I didn't know that it would be in your face on the uphills. 

Upon arrival, the parking lot was full, and it seemed like there was a good chance there were some runners faster than me in attendance.  Last year's winner, and the runner I thought I would battle it out with today, was directing the race, not running, as he ran the Hartford Marathon the day before in 3:12.  Still, I noticed some teenagers with Westerly HS track shirts, I figured one of them would be too fast for me.  I ran about a mile warm up and was feeling really good.  I tried to get to the starting line right before the start, but it didn't begin on time.  I did over hear one of the kids in the WHS jerseys say to his friends he was going to be running in front all on his own.  I made sure to line up next to him. 

At the gun, he took off aggressively.  I pushed myself to stay near him and then as he slowed I briefly passed by.  He countered my move and surged ahead at a pace I was not comfortable with at a quarter mile in.  I peeked over my shoulder to see if anyone else was close, but it looked like it was just going to be me chasing the leader.  His lead only gradually increased during the first mile, which was mostly flat or downhill.  At the 1 mile mark, I was at 5:47 - my fastest mile ever.  I knew this was a little too fast, but I knew that the hills coming up would even things out.  The 2nd mile began with a long straightaway, and his lead grew to about 15 seconds. 

The course then veered west, and not only were we faced with a big hill, but the strong wind became apparent.  At first, he seemed to be climbing well, and I figured that I was stuck in second.  As we continued, he began slowing, and kept chugging along.  I then caught him, and he told me, "good job".  I kept pushing myself, waiting for the road to level off.  It did level off on a side road, but then climbed upwards again.  By the time the majority of the climbs were over, I looked back and was now way ahead.  I then checked my watch looking for the 2nd mile marker and it was already over 6 minutes.  By the time I reached the 2 mile mark, it clocked in at 6:25.  Yikes!  I ran it so hard, but the wind on the hills made you feel like you were going nowhere. 

Beginning mile 3, my goal was now to just win.  The course and weather weren't going to produce a great time, but I felt the conditions were more my style of running, and I wanted to validate that with the W.  Unfortunately, there were more short hills to climb, and being at a higher elevation, the wind felt stronger.  I just tried to run as hard as possible.  Finally, I recognized the last road back into the park for the start/finish.  I was hoping for an adrenaline rush to help me with a strong finishing kick, but I settled for what I could muster.  I saw the clock tick 18:58 and crossed the line.  I heard a discussion about a bet that no one would finish under 19 minutes.  I felt good after the initial urge to throw up. 

I met up with my wife and kids who were pretty surprised to see me win.  I slapped five with the second place kid.  We watched my dad finish, and then talked to some of his running friends.  For the win I received a customized medal and a $50 gift certificate for Westerly Chamber of Commerce businesses.  Can't wait to eat and drink that up.  It turned out that the timing company had my official time at 19:00.  Kind of annoying, but I still think I'm at 18:30 pace on a flat course.  And without too much wind.  It was still a 13 second PR. 

Official results


Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Weekly Log 10-10-11 to 10-16-11

Monday: 0 - day off after 7 straight. 

Tuesday: 11 miles - Rome Point trails alone.  A relaxing afternoon run on a busy stressful work day.  I seem to be running this course about the same speed recently.  Total time: 1:17:35. 

Wednesday: 11 miles - Quonset Bike Path workout with Calf Pasture Point warm up (1.5M) and cool down (5M).  After last week's 1x3 mile, I decided to go back to the reverse ladder I've been doing this fall.  I feel a lot more confident in my abilities, and I tried to carry that over to my workout today.  I ran hard and felt like I emptied the tank on each effort.  I'm happy to see my times come down.  The workout: 2 mile/1 mile/800/400 Results: 11:50 (5:58/5:52)/5:51/2:54/1:20.  I think I ran my fastest miles ever.  3 minute recoveries after the 2 mile and 1 mile, 2 minute recovery after the 800.  I stopped at my car for water and to check email and then had a nice cool down out to the end of the beach and back.  Windy and grey - it really felt like fall.  Total time: 1:22:42. 

Thursday: 11 miles - Rome Point trails with Dan.  I forgot to pack running clothes so I had to borrow shorts to get this run in today.  Grey and wet, but no rain.  We ran at a comfortable pace throughout.  Total time: 1:23:37. 

Friday: 0 - oops, messed this one up.  I wanted to do a longish run, but when I headed out on my break, it began raining hard off and on.  I couldn't convince myself to do it.  I should have ran early to beat the heavy rains. 

Saturday: 8 miles - Vin Gormley trails with Jon Short.  We met up at 9AM at the picnic area and followed the trail clockwise.  Perfect running weather and the trails weren't as wet as I thought.  Good conversation as we made our way around the pond.  Near the end I was a little surprised at our time as I thought we were going 8 minute pace, but it was actually slower.  Oh well, it was a nice run, and my legs didn't feel that fresh.  Hopefully they will feel good tomorrow as I'm planning to run a small 5K in Westerly.  Total time: 68 minutes. 

Sunday: 4 miles - Run for the Pumpkins 5K - 1st overall, 19:00.  Hilly course and windy.  See separate race report write up. 

Overall: I was hoping for more miles, but the decision to not run in the rain Friday kept the total down.  The 5K was a blast, and winning my first ever race felt good, no matter the size or competition. 

Weekly Total: 45 miles
Last Week: 63 miles
Year to Date: 1885 miles

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Weekly Log 10-3-11 to 10-9-11

Monday: 9 miles - Rome Point trails alone.  It's beginning to feel like fall out there.  It's definitely darker in the woods now.  My pace was pretty snappy throughout.  Total time: 61:11. 

Tuesday: 9 miles - Ryan Park trails.  I ran the first three with Gip and then the last six solo.  We kept it easy, and then I picked it up a little bit.  Another really nice day.  Total time: 68:33. 

Wednesday: 10 miles - Quonset Bike Path workout with Calf Pasture Point roads and beach alone.  I was equipped with three plans for my workout today, but I was happy I got to do Plan A.  After yesterday's run I had some discomfort in my right calf, so I did a nice warm up to test it out.  It felt fine so at the far end of the bike path I began my workout: 1 x 3 miles.  Mapping it online, I had a very good landmark for 3 miles, but when I tried to extend it to 5K, there were no distinguishing features to utilize.  The reason I wanted to run this distance was to prove a point to myself.  The coolish weather would help with the time.  So, off I went.  I wasn't sure how hard I should be running, and I was nervous when I peaked at my watch after half a mile.  Getting to two miles was the hard part, and the last mile seemed easier mentally.  I ended up proving the point to myself, and finished the 3 miles in a satisfying 17:57 (5:59/6:02/5:56).  I then embarked on a nice slow cooldown, most of which was on the beach.  A tidal stream I jumped on the way out got significantly wider on my return and I got really wet.  Total time: 1:16:00. 

Thursday: 11 miles - Saunderstown hilly roads alone.  This was not planned, but due to construction at the Rome Point parking lot, I had to call an audible.  I began at the park and ride and did my usual course from the spring: Plum Point Rd, Gilbert Stuart Rd, and Snuff Mill Rd.  Then I did some extra weaving through the Plum Beach neighborhoods to get to 11 miles and 6 good climbs.  Total Time: 1:21:03.  My pace was faster than I anticipated, and I worked a lot harder than the easy run I planned.  The weather was so perfect that I wanted to keep running. 

Friday: 11 miles - Rome Point trails and beach solo.  For the second day in a row, I was actually cold running for the first 10 minutes.  Really quiet in the woods today.  I wasn't sure how I would feel today, but my legs felt fantastic.  After dealing with the high tide earlier in the week, it finally was manageable.  A few interesting shorebirds I couldn't identify.  I kept up the good pace for the rest of the run and finished up in 1:16:51. 

Saturday: 7 miles - Burlingame trails 5M and roads 2M.  I was able to get in a late afternoon run that I thought would be easy.  After a pretty peppy first mile to get to the trailhead, I decided to just run hard.  I passed a family of mtn bikers twice and one of the kids asked their dad if I was going to keep up that pace the whole time.  The answer was no.  I went even faster on the last mile.  Total time: 50:21.  In the morning, I had a great hike with my kids in the Grills Preserve.  The ambitious hike we had planned got even longer when I took a wrong turn.  My son thought I wasn't going the right way and I should have listened to him.  Not much complaining on the 3 mile hike. 

Sunday: 6 miles - Burlingame trails with Sarah.  This was a good training run for my wife for the Lil' Rhody Runaround.  I took her on my favorite mtn bike trail and then the loop around the old campground.  We finished through the north side by the beaver pond.  Nice and easy 64 minutes.  Fun afternoon spent at Misquamicut beach.  It felt like summer and the water was still warm enough to swim. 

Overall: A really great week of running and a fun long weekend. 

Weekly Total: 63 miles
Last Week: 47 miles
Year to Date: 1840 miles