Monday: 10 miles - Ryan Park trails alone. Warm day - 80 degrees - and I ran shirtless in the park for the first time this year which always feels strange, especially when encountering other people. Anyway, I kept it easy as I weaved my creaky body around the trails. Total time: 1:20:31.
Evening Lady Slipper Walk with my Daughter
Bonus Find - Luna Moth
Tuesday: 11.5 miles - mix of roads and trails with Galoob in SK/Exeter. I woke up and my body was feeling much better. I was excited to run today and met Mike at the Kingston train station (where I think I saw Jeff's car parked?). We ran north along Fairgrounds Rd which turns into Hundred Acre Pond Rd. At the end of that road there is a wide trail that connects over to Wolf Rocks Rd. There was a very strong headwind in this direction, but it was muggy otherwise and warmer than forecasted. The pace was advertised as peppy and that's what we kept it. After going up and over Wolf Rocks, we crossed Rte 2 and jumped into the Yawgoo Pond SKLT property. I had never been in here, but we noticed a new to Mike trail and explored that. The woods here are awesome and include my favorite plant life - giant rhododendron. The path skirted the eastern shore of the pond and got very narrow - didn't we just cross over a new bridge? Eventually the trail widened and it was clear we were on a dirt driveway, but there was nothing posted anywhere. We emptied out onto a road and were completely turned around. After a few minutes of running we realized where we were. We ran the flat roads back to Rte 2 and then decided to climb the Pleasant View Dr hill and take the powerline and trails back down to Hundred Acre Pond Rd. Fast finish back to the train station (last couple of miles in the low 6's). Total time: 1:20:53.
Wednesday: 10 miles - Big River trail workout solo. Back to feeling strong, I was excited to head up to Big River for a trail threshold run on the Turtle Loop (Lego-Dead Shed-Pump House-NLT). I ran this Strava segment hard in late October last year as a tune up before Li'l Rhody. I remember working hard, but putting up a really fast time - 43:47 (for approx. 7 miles). I was hoping to be close to that today, but more importantly, I wanted to put up a consistent effort throughout. I ran a 12 minute warm up and then got to work. It was warm again, but since it was technically turkey season, I kept on my orange shirt. I was thirsty throughout. I felt like I was giving a true threshold pace effort - hard but not all out and maintainable. The woods are very dry now and my choice of wearing Nike Frees over my trail shoes didn't seem ideal as my feet would slightly slip on the dry pine needles and leaves at times. Anyway, I checked my overall time at a few spots to guage how I was doing - halfway through Lego - about 12 minutes! - at the end of Lego - just over 24 minutes!! I was right on pace to match last October's time. I continued on Dead Shed, trying to keep pushing myself when I felt like I was letting up. I was feeling a bit tired. Finally, at the end of that trail, I knew the end was near. I picked it up on the straight Pump House Trail section and then carried a hard effort back up the New London Turnpike (although the thick sand was annoying). I was super excited to finish up in 43:20 - a new PR by 27 seconds! I also set a PR on the Lego Trail and I now think the CR may be within reach if I ran just that segment. Also surprising, I set my PR for Dead Shed. This was a great workout and a huge confidence boost. I was in great shape last October but faster now. I ran a two mile cooldown very slowly. Total time: 1:12:42.
Thursday: 11+ miles - Wakefield/Narragansett mix of roads and trails with Galoob. We originally planned to meet at the track early this morning, but neither of us felt up to it when it came time. Instead we met up for an easy 8-10 miles. Ha! The pace wasn't bad, but not slow. We ran the bike path through town and then took some side roads and trails to reach Ocean Road. We then ran along the seawall (both wearing WTAC singlets in NRA territory) and then on the beach itself before hopping on the Canonchet Farm Trail. We kept the pace civilized this week and then connected with the bike path again. Total time: 1:21:59.
Friday: 13.5 miles - Ryan Park and Wickford by dirt (except for a couple of miles of pavement. This was a tweener run - not long, not short, not hard, not easy. I parked at the high lot at Ryan Park and took the wider paths out to Oak Hill Rd and then connected to downtown Wickford via some roads, trails, and the old trestle. I ran the Bush Hill trails and on grass paths in Wilson Park before returning back to Ryan Park, where I tacked on a little more mileage. I made the best of my longish running window, but with no desire to travel, run hills, or run hard. Total time: 1:40:53.
Saturday: 10.5 miles - Carter Preserve trails and local roads workout alone. It was pouring rain early in the morning, and I had to be home by 8AM anyway, so I ran later in the afternoon after my wife returned home from work. I was feeling lazy after spending the day mostly outside with my kids, but I got ready to run at 4PM. My plan was to get in some sort of workout, and I thought I would do 3 x grassland mile. It was 70 degrees with bright sun. I ran down the road and connected to Carter via the powerline. I threw in 4 strides before I reached the large field. I wasn't feel particularly fast or motivated, but it was time to begin. I decided to alternate directions. There was a gusty west wind, and I couldn't decide which way would be better. The footing on this mostly grassy trail was ok - a little thick and slow. I was aiming for I pace, which translates to 5:29 miles, but how much slower would I pace feel on this surface? Results: 5:45/5:41/5:36. At least I improved each time. The first lap I was interrupted by a loose dog that jumped all over me. I probably lost a couple of seconds there. The next two I did CCW (CW on the first one). I liked that direction better. I did a five minute recovery jog through the woods after each mile. On my way home I was picking up the pace on the road. I decided to charge up the mile long hill on my road as an added workout mile. It felt pretty damn good and my GAP was about I pace. Mission accomplished on getting a workout in.
Sunday: 12.5 miles - Burlingame trails alone. I couldn't get out the door early enough for a long run. I was not motivated especially after running hard 14 hours beforehand, and a week full of miles. I parked at the red gate (didn't want to start on a hill) and ran Vin Gormley CCW. My legs didn't feel horrible and the morning was beautiful (a bit cool and sunny). I had about 1 hour and 45 minutes to run. At the campground, I bypassed it by doing the Brrr-lingame trails in reverse and finishing on the NWR trails. I reconnected with Vinny G on Sanctuary Road. I followed back to my car, slowing on the more technical terrain. When I reached my car, I still had a few minutes to spare, so I ran back and forth down the trail and road until I got in 1 hour and 40 minutes of running.
I spent the afternoon with my family at the Tillinghast Pond Management Area. We put the canoe on the car, packed a lunch, and ventured out to the wilds of West Greenwich, RI. We picnicked on the shore of the pond and then did a really awesome hike on the Coney Brook Loop. I really need to come back and run here. Loved this trail. After the 3 mile hike we put the canoe in the water and paddled around the shoreline. Fun day. I'll be back.
Overall: Lots of miles! Almost a PR. Almost 80. No hills to speak of, so I'll be looking for them next week.
Weekly Total: 79 miles
Last Week: 70 miles
Year to Date: 1263 miles
May Total: 187 miles