Ready or not here comes the Nipmuck Trail Marathon. I've settled on some time goals, but basically I want to race and not just finish, so it should be interesting. I figure I'll feel good for about 2.5 hours then who knows. The weather should be decent. Taper this week to be 100% on Sunday.
Monday: 9.5 miles - Big River trails alone. This was a really fun loop that I made up as I went along. I was able to run my favorite single track on the west side of Hopkins Hill Rd, mostly in reverse direction. The trails were hard to follow with a lot of fallen leaves (mostly birch). I also had to jump a rather large snake and avoid an angry bee. Mostly the trails are narrow, twisty, and hilly. They don't get much use except for the occasional dirtbike it looks like. I crossed Hopkins Hill Rd at Tarbox Pond and then ran on the east side around the ponds. I decided to make a mad dash across the beaver dam and finally put up a decent time (19 seconds) despite getting my feet wet. I continued on running the ridge before making my way around Carr Pond. It was fun to try different trails. I ended by giving the Strava segment up the hill to the parking lot a go. I remembered that Bob Jackman took the CR from me back in August when I was on vacation. I flew up the hill and felt fantastic. I guess my legs are feeling fresh. New CR by quite a bit. This was a great loop on a great fall day.
Tuesday: 6.5 miles - Ryan Park trails alone. Today was rather warm (75 degrees) and sunny. I parked at the high lot on Oak Hill Rd and ran the west side trails. I forgot my watch, but could track my run on my phone. The low bush huckleberry on the powerline were quite stunning so I grabbed a quick picture.
I was impressed with the number of people I saw running today. Also, it's really dry and the dirt trails are very dusty. Total time: 53:53.
Wednesday: 8 miles - Rome Point beach (6+ miles) and trails solo. This was sort of a low intensity workout. Easy pace, but very challenging terrain along the shore. I ran through the woods over to the brook at the powerline. I then followed the shore south for the next three miles. It's a bit overgrown and muddy at first. The cool part was seeing a bunch of fidler crabs. It then gets very rocky around the point. The going is very slow and frustrating. It then opens up on shells/small rocks/thick sand for much of the duration. It was hot today (80+ degrees) and suncreen was sweating off into my eyes. The pace was slow, but I was working pretty hard. The tide was low, but rising, and the southern end was a bit dicey. This run was a good challenge for me mentally and physically (especially my feet/ankles).
Thursday: 6 miles - Calf Pasture Point beach, trail, and bike path alone. Another warm day spent mostly on the shoreline. I'm feeling antsy about Sunday and my legs are beginning to feel tight and terrible. Looks like it might be warm during the race too.
Friday: 6 miles - Rome Point trails with Sandals. I got an email last night from Aaron about running today, now that he is living in NK and back to running. We met up at Rome for an easy stroll around the trails. Looking forward to more weekday trail runs with him in the future. Total time: 53 minutes.
Saturday: 3 miles - Burlingame trail loop with my wife in the late afternoon. A nice easy stroll through the woods. 31 minutes.
Sunday: 27 miles - Nipmuck Trail Marathon - 2nd overall, 3:38:02. Separate write up to follow Monday or Tuesday.
Weekly Total: 66 miles
Last Week: 64 miles
Year to Date: 2479 miles