Monday: 10+ miles - Rome Point trails and beach alone. Decent weather today. I wandered 3+ miles down to the point and then ran the coastline south. At the usual turnaround point (southern end of Plum Beach) I was surprised by more beach! The tide was low, but I've seen it lower, and I have never been able to go any further due to wet rocks and cliffs. Thanks to Sandy, sand has piled up over the rocks and made for an easily traversed beach to run on. I continued south for another quarter mile or so until I reached a rocky/ledgy roadblock. Pretty amazing. I ran the coastline back to Rome Point, this time with the wind in my face. I ran less trails back to my car. Great run. Total time: 1:19:48.
Tuesday: 10 miles - CCMS track with Galoob followed by long cooldown on the SC bike path alone. I wasn't sure how smart of an idea it was to do more speedwork, but my legs told me it was okay. I met up with Mike at 6:15AM. He usually has a plan and I'm happy to follow along. Currently he is training for a fast indoor 800, and I'm just looking to get faster in general. Today's workout was 2 sets of 4 200's with the goal of descending splits. This was followed by 3 fly 50's and 1 fly 100 just for fun at the end. After warming up, we did one 200 "stride" just to get the legs ready. I definitely wasn't feeling fresh out there, and even needed to catch my breath after the last couple of 200's. Overall, I was pleased with my times and had a lot of fun on the really short stuff. Results: 36.3/35.9/34.9/34.6 33.3/33.6/33.2/32.5 7.2/7.6/7.3/14.6
One note: the 50's and 100 were hard to time for me. I had to slow down to reach over and stop my watch and felt like I stopped it late. Mike was holding his watch in one hand which seems much more convenient. No cool down with Mike as he needed to rush home so I decided to park in Peace Dale and run the bike path east to check out the newer section I've yet to run. It took a few minutes to warm my body back up (thanks to the cold windy mist). I crossed 108 and ran the bike path under Rte 1 and out to the end and back. My legs weren't happy with me, but I enjoyed myself for the most part. Total time: 1:16.
Wednesday: 0 - met Mike G and his daughter to help clear a new trail for the upcoming Old Mtn Trail 5K. As I've stated here before, I love brush clearing cross training! I'm really excited about what the new course will look like - lot's of single track, most of it technical, and less fields. The day off was probably smart since it's been a while, but my legs feel pretty good. Back at it tomorrow.
Thursday: 15 miles - Ryan Park trails (10M) with Wickford roads (5M) alone. I was planning to run from my office to Ryan, but I couldn't make that work politically, so I started at Ryan, ran 6.5 miles, and then explored some side streets. Despite needing a few minutes to warm up, I really enjoyed the chilly, but sunny weather. My pace felt good through the woods. Once I hit the roads, I could feel the lingering fatigue in my legs. At first I was going to run 2 miles on the roads, then 3, then 4. I hit 4 miles before reaching the trails again, so I figured I would just continue on the roads and get 5. My legs were now tight in addition to being tired. Luckily the trails kept me focused and I didn't dwell on how I was feeling. Total time: 1:48:55.
Friday: 10 miles - Saunderstown hilly roads alone. My plans to meet in SK for hill repeats and trail intervals fell through, so I went out alone in the afternoon to attempt to retake my KOM's in Saunderstown. Mike G beat my times on four climbs. Two seemed out of reach, but two were definitely within striking distance. I began on this cold blustery day by parking at the Rte 1A lot and heading north to run Plum Point Rd. I consider this the 2nd hardest hill in the area, and my best time was just a few seconds behind Mike's (from a run we both did before I had a GPS watch). Usually I do this hill at the end of a hill workout, so I thought I could run it faster at the beginning of one. My legs felt numb from the cold and my form seemed off, but I could tell from my pace that I was making good time. I then recovered by heading south to Plum Beach Rd. I ran to the end of the road and then ran the Champlin Rd climb (actually is on 4 different roads). My pace was fast again (as well as my awkwardness). I then decided to head over to Gilbert Stuart - the climb of all climbs around here. My lungs were already taxed from the first two hills, and even though I had a mile and a half to recover, I still wasn't sure how much I had in the tank. As I was making my way to the hill I was passed by a bike, and I wondered if he was going to go up the hill too. I had forgotten about him as I suffered on the steepest part of the climb, until I saw him barely moving on the bike up ahead of me. Although I never caught up to him, this motivated me to finish the hill strong. I felt good about my effort, but this was one of the KOM's Mike's time was really strong. I recovered running to Rte 1 and turning around and then heading back down the hill. I was trying to keep my overall pace peppy. After crossing the stream, I had the long 1.2 mile climb up Snuff Mill Road. I increased my intensity and hoped for the best. Mike's pace was 6:16, and even though I was happy with my effort, the speed just wasn't there. It was still my fastest ascent. I ran down Rte 1A to Cottrell Road and then swung around the roads of Plum Beach to the yacht club. I turned around and ran the last hill of the day up Plum Beach Road. I gave it a good effort, but my GPS pace wasn't speedy. I finished by running up and down 1A until I reached 10 miles for the day. Total time: 1:07:37 and total elevation gain of 1,015' according to my watch. I ended up as KOM on Plum Point Rd, Champlin Rd, and Plum Beach Rd climbs. 2nd place on Gilbert Stuart and Snuff Mill. Oh well. It felt good to run hard on a cold day.
Saturday: 16 miles - Westerly/North Stonington/Ashaway run with Jeff, Muddy, Tom, and Mike B. This was plan B to avoid opening day of shotgun season. We met up in the dark and intermittent snow at 6AM. We ran roads north, taking up most of the pavement unless a car came by. I knew I was in for a long day. My legs were toast and Jeff, Tom, and Mike B are notorious for their up tempo long runs. My legs were protesting right away, and I joked (or maybe I wasn't) about trying to stay with the lead pack. I only felt good climbing. We crossed the closed Boom Bridge and then ran by Lewis Farm. We made are way east to Ashaway and then ran south along the river. At Potter Hill we briefly slowed down and ran a couple of loops through the Whitley Preserve. My trail vision was horrendous since I left my glasses in the car (thinking it was going to snow/rain). Back on the road, the group began doing some short 2 telephone pole length sprints. I must have been in rough shape because I made the good decision to not partake. Wouldn't have been smart. I was more or less keeping up by maintaining the normal pace over their sprints then recoveries. Did I mention the normal pace was 6:48? Mike B eventually ran with me as he did intervals the previous day. We sat back and chatted. We then had the long climb up to the Westerly town Forest. Again I resisted my competitive urge, and ascended at a controlled pace. We then ran trails for the next few miles, and luckily at an easy pace. Basically the trails are either up or down. I was falling behind on the downs, mostly because of my vision. I would catch back up on the climbs ( is it easier to see going uphill?). We realized that the run was running longer than anticipated so we high tailed it back to our cars. I was able to move pretty well, but that may be attributed to my fear of arriving home late. To quote Muddy quoting Ferenc, we were rollin'. Total time: 1:57ish (I need to upload my GPS data). Good workout. My legs are dead, but not injured.
1 mile - 3xhome trail loops with my son when I got home. We talked about working his way up to a 3K distance. This will be a gradual long term project. He steadily ran these tricky trails without stopping. Total time: 12:49. I'm proud he stuck with it for 3 laps and he seemed pleased with himself. It even worked as a nice cool down for me.
Sunday: 0 - plans for short easy AM run fell through before the day got busy.
Overall: Another high quality week with two rest days mixed in. One week to the Christmas 10K.
Weekly Total: 62 miles
Last Week: 65 miles
Year to Date: 2773 miles