Monday: 9 miles - Ryan Park trails solo. Legs not sore, but a little flat. I found a new trail between the field and powerlines which was really fun. I thought about just staying on this side of the park, but did wander over to the other side, where I found another short new trail. I finished up by doing the Rte 4 Strava loop at a decent pace. Total time: 1:06:45.
Tuesday: 6 miles - Old Mountain Field 13x150 sprints with surrounding trails wu/cd with Galoob, Gunshow, and Mark. We met up for a 1PM workout. The weather was rather blustery and cold. We ran some trails for about two miles before embarking on the speedwork. We sprinted the length of a baseball field, but ended by running up a short steep embankment at the end. We then ran back and continued, not allowing for much recovery. I liked this style of workout - short intervals and fast recoveries. My pace for these generally got quicker and ranged between 4:26 - 5:00 per mile. Short trail cooldown after as no one was feeling that excited about running more.
Wednesday: 8.5 miles - Rome Point trails and beach alone. I decided to give this place a shot after losing interest during the busy winter season. There were only a couple of cars in the lot (good sign) and the sun felt warm in the woods. I decided to make a segment out of the yellow dot loop trail. I don't usually run the entire loop in one shot - just pieces at a time. I decided to run the loop twice and at a peppy pace to set a good baseline. On the first one, I reached a spot that has a huge fallen oak tree, and a side trail to get around it that includes a large stonewall. I ran along the wall and then decided to jump on top of it (waist high). My right foot planted on a large flat stone that slid, and I ended up smashing my left ankle/shin into the wall. Ouch! It really hurt. I limped on up the hill and finished the 1 mile loop. I thought about quitting, but decided it wasn't bleeding that bad, so I ran on. I ran some more trails and then ran the beach. It was rather windy, so I knew when it felt nice heading south, that I would be cursing the decision on the way back. I ran more trails and then attempted the yellow dot loop again, this time without hurting myself. My time was 6:05 - it feels like a mile although GPS reads .9 miles. When I got back to my car I realized that my shin was swollen and kind of gross. Total time: 1:05:32.
Thursday: 10.5 miles - Quonset Bike Path (and beach) progression run alone. My plan was to run steady out and around the point, and then turning it up on the bike path for about 6 miles. My first mile was rather speedy, so I tried to go fast on the trail and beach to keep the pace up (almost impossible on thick sand). I was doing fine until I almost got knocked over by a large wet dog. It was playing in the water, spied me, and then ran right into me. I tried to not curse until I was out of earshot of the owner. My pace suffered the rest of the beach stretch, but I was able to pick it up back on pavement. Heading west, I was fighting a decent headwind, but my splits were still good. My goal was to be in the high 5's on the way back, and I knew the wind would help me along if I could keep it up. I was on target as I returned, but fading as I finished 8 miles. I wasn't back to my car, so I tried for one more mile. It wasn't my fastest, but close enough. This turned into a nice progression run. Splits: 6:51/6:50 (trail/beach)/7:06(beach)/6:24/6:13/6:11/5:55/5:48/5:50. I then did a 1.5 mile cool down. This was a good workout.
Friday: 9 miles - Ryan Park trails with Mike G. A potentially rainy day that turned out awesome by the time I met up with Mike for our run. We wandered around the usual trails, spending alot of time on the more interesting west side stuff. My legs are definitely tired and I hope I can complete my planned run tomorrow. Fun running in the sun and good conversation. Total time: 1:08:29. There was as Turtle sighting on the root trail....
Saturday: 27+ miles - Burlingame trails (6 miles roads) alone in the early AM. I was able to execute the early morning solo start and get out the door at 5:30AM. My plan was to run roads down to the campground entrance since it would be dark, and then run about every trail in Burlingame. I carried a small pack for a mile and then dumped it in the woods at a lightly used trailhead. This would be my aid station. I tried to dial back my pace on the roads, but it was too dark to see my watch, so I had no idea what I was doing. Right away, I could feel fatigue and tightness in my legs, thanks to a week of intense workouts. This long run was going to be interesting. After about two miles, there was significantly more light. I thought about jumping on the Vin Gormley Trail, but stayed the course on Buckeye Brook Road. After the mile uphill, it was a gradual decline on Klondike Road. After almost 6 miles, I reached the North South Trail at the campground entrance. I ran it north and then began running the Brrr-lingame course backward. I startled about 10 deer in this section. I continued on the trail that enters the NWR and then connected back with the VG Trail at Sanctuary Road. I then followed the yellow dots CW for the next 4+ miles. I worried about my legs early on, but eventually forgot about them. I reached my backback at about 15 miles and 1:55 of running. I wasn't hungy or thirsty, but I drank some Coke (ignored my water) and ate a small leftover Easter chocolate bar. I then headed off on Sammy C's. I was surprised to see another runner (the only person I saw all morning) here. She had three unleashed dogs (large poodles), with one rather growly and aggressive. She said "he's just a puppy." Oh, okay, what does that mean? I continued on, and made the mistake of checking my watch. I was getting angry at the GPS pace (nothing new for me!). At least it kept my mind busy. I reached Vin Gormley again, and then headed CCW until taking Schoolhouse Pond Trail. I then jumped onto the secret trail, really cursing my watch, but the trail is slow going thanks to the insane person(s) who made it. I realized that I missed the middle section, but I was beginning to get hungry at this point. I reconnected with VG, and then headed south to do the old north camp loop. GPS pace was looking better, but I really needed more fuel. The long climb back up the dirt/sand road was torture. I took the side trail back to my backback, reaching it at the 3:01 mark (I forget what the mileage was). This time I ate my peanut butter granola bar, more chocolate and then drank the rest (2/3) of the Coke. My legs, tired the entire time, were beginning to get worse. I was going to stick with my pre-planned route anyway. I ran the governor's trail to the old dirt roads of north Burlingame. I looped around to the white dot River Trail. I was dreading the climb up from the canoe camps, and it didn't disappoint. Miserable. Endless. I then took the North South Trail north to Burdickville Road. Another smaller but steeper hill, with plenty of loose rocks. By the time I reached the road, and the last climb, adrenaline kicked in, and I finished on the strong side. Total time: 3:40:24. GPS mileage - 25.9 (8:31 pace), but 27+ seems more accurate, especially looking at my pace on the roads. Overall, this was great confidence booster for the TARC 50K in three weeks - especially considering how tired my legs were going into today and how I plan to really taper for the race.
Sunday: 0 - I ended up not racing the Chariho 5K. My legs need a break, and racing seemed like an injury risk. Instead, I loosened up the legs on a hike with the kids through the Hopkinton Grills Preserve. Fun spot - soft dry trails through interesting forest and along the Pawcatuck River. Later, I watched the kids and cheered on my wife running the Chariho 5K. Topped the day off with the always delicious El Fuego/Brickley's Ice Cream combo in downtown Wakefield.
The only map you'll find on the internet for this place
somewhere on Cedar Swamp Trail
Kicking it to the finish line
Weekly Total: 70 miles
Last Week: 56 miles
Year to Date: 804 miles