Monday, March 31, 2014

Trails, Trails, Trails: 3-24-14 to 3-30-14

Slacker blog post.  I had a good week of training on the trails post Brrr-lingame race.  I got in 70 miles with only 15 of them on pavement.  I didn't get any speed work in, but I was happy with the hill workout and the time spent on technical hilly trails.  I ended up with just about 4000' of elevation gain for the week according to Strava.  This upcoming week will be an easy taper until Saturday's Big River Half Marathon.  I can't wait for this one.  Unlike Brrr-lingame, just being fast doesn't translate to success in this race.  Technicality, rolling terrain, and endurance are the keys to this one.  I'm hoping I've trained accordingly.  I loved this fortune I received Saturday night: 

Monday: 10 miles - Ryan Park trails alone.  I may not have won the race on Saturday, but I think I won the race for quickest recovery.  I felt great today and spent a good amount of time looping around the newer east side single track (yet another brand new section too).  I then made my way over to the west, and stuck with the more interesting single track. 

Tuesday: 11 miles - Big River trails alone.  I had the time for my first trip to Big River this year, and I got a chance to preview most of the upcoming half marathon course.  I began at the Hopkins Hill lot.  The trails were dry and snow/ice free.  The drawback was that the long period snow cover didn't allow a lot of use, so many of the trails were leaf covered.  It was also a tad confusing, but that's nothing a few hundred orange flags can't fix.  I was happy to maintain a peppy pace throughout this run.  Running here has me pumped about the race.  This course is brutal, especially compared to Brrr-lingame.  I'm hoping my trail heavy training will really pay off. 

Wednesday: 10 miles - Gilbert Stuart Rd hill workout solo.  I wasn't motivated to meet Galoob at the indoor track and I procrastinated going out for any kind of run.  Finally, I opted to run repeats of the Gilbert Stuart Road hill.  This seemed like a relatively wind protected spot (it was a super windy day) and I thought controlled hill repeats would be an easy way to get a workout in.  I know this sounds crazy, but that's how I think.  I parked at Camp Nokewa, and ran the dirt road down to the paved one.  I then did a 10 minute warm up and began climbing.  I felt slow.  The climb was hard even though I wasn't charging it.  I ran almost all the way out to Rte 1 each time, which is longer than I normally would do this.  It gave me a bigger break between the main hill repeats, but it forced me to do a second climb each time.  The second felt even harder, and I thought about bailing, but the third was fine, and so was the fourth.  My results on the .5+ mile Strava segment (218' of elevation gain) were: 3:58/3:55/3:59/4:04 (7:20 - 7:40 min pace).  I was really pleased that my overall pace for the run ended up at 7:15 - I definitely felt like it as going to be close to 8.  Also pleased to get 1207' in elevation gain for the entire run.  Not easy around here! 

Thursday: 7 miles - SK mix lunch run with Galoob and Nate.  We met up at Nate's new place and wandered around his trails until pushing on to the TriPond trails.  We then made our way on the bike path and ran more trails at Curtis Corner.  We connected back on some paved roads until Nate took us on a detour through his neighbors farm.  Directly through it.  Good Thor's Day fun. 

Friday: 8.5 miles - Burlingame trail run with Muddy.  I was home from work watching my sick child for the day and decided to see if Muddy was interested in joining me for a late afternoon trail run.  He was game, so we ran a fun course I did last week from my house.  Lively conversation and a good run ensued. 

Saturday: 16 miles - Big River course recon with Muddy, Seth, and Garvin.  I was planning on running the course at a challenging pace and was happy to have some of my friends join me.  After a 2 mile warm up on the New London Turnpike (dirt), the four of us headed out on the course.  It was fun chatting along and getting to show Muddy and Chris around (Seth did the race last year).  The pace was peppy, but not hard for most of the run.  Fatigue set in (just like the race) on the final twisty 5K (Lego trail).  Ugh.  Flashback.  We did the course in 1:50.  I just need to be 20 minutes faster next Saturday....

Sunday: 7.5 miles - Burlingame trails alone.  I headed out in the light rain after most of the 5+ inches had already fallen.  I knew I was going to get extremely wet, but the temperature was warm (low 50's) so I didn't mind.  The moving water was incredible.  North Burlingame was in okay shape, but the real Buckeye Brook was a raging scary river.  I had to cross one spot that was a little dicey (deep, fast moving water).  I then ran some single track on the other side of Buckeye Brook Rd.  First off, there was a mtn bike race going on, and the trail was torn up.  I found sections of trail that weren't part of the course (I never actually saw a mtn biker, just tracks) that were in better shape.  But, most of the single track was a stream.  My gross shoes came out looking brand new.  Sometimes I would have to run through puddles thigh deep.  Pretty interesting way to end the week. 

Weekly Total: 70 miles
Last Week: 53 miles
Year to Date: 766 miles
March Total: 293 miles

Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Brrr-lingame Trail Race 2014

Okay, I've slacked off long enough, time for my story about the race this past Saturday. 

This was a focus race for me, which meant a week of tapering.  This is never easy.  I still end up running everyday (basically I need to for the mental health benefits), but never feel satisfied that I've run the right amount.  Anyway, I ended up running about 30 miles in the five days leading up to the race.  My legs were fresh.  My mind was antsy.  What should I expect?  I've probably had too much confidence coming into the previous series races.  This one was different.  I was confident that my training had put me in a position to run a strong race, but I knew that the top competitors were all in great shape and faster than me.  There were no advantages for me in this race.  A ten mile race was right in everyone's wheelhouse.  Even Garvin had done long runs.  Sure I had run more trails recently than the others, but this course was fast for a trail race, and not too technical.  No big advantage there either.  I envisioned finishing in 5th place behind my brother Greg, Garvin, Jackman, and Justin.  Of course there is always the question of who else might show up race day. 

I arrived at the race more than an hour early.  I had to leave right after the race for my annual dorky fantasy baseball auction draft.  I figured I could socialize with friends and family beforehand.  The weather was awesome - high 30's to start - partly cloudy skies.  After chatting it up, I noticed the time and wanted to go out for a warm up.  A group of us ran the campground section.  As usual, people peeled off for bathroom breaks, and by the time I reached my car again, I was alone.  I retied my shoes, settled on my racing gear - singlet, shorts, gloves, hat, and listened to some music to pump me up/relax me.  With five minutes to spare, I headed to the start and did some strides across the wide field.  Crap - Derek Jakoboski is here.  There goes another place for me.  Maybe he isn't in good shape...

I lined up front and waited for the siren.  Off we went across the field.  I was up front with a bunch of others, but ended up second to the single track.  I think this was more because I took the most direct line than anything.  I followed Derek.  I was feeling good for the first few minutes.  I felt like the pace was maintainable, but it was getting hard.  Eventually, Derek began to pull away.  Bob got antsy and went by to stick with Derek.  I found myself in the odd position of running in front of my brother for a minute or two.  I was happy that he went by to catch the other guys.  He hadn't been running much and wasn't sure how he would fair in a ten mile race.  I was routing for him to pull out the win.  Another minute went by and then Garvin made his way past (you can read his blog for a funny description of this move). 

Justin was the next in line.  He was right on my heels as I crossed the camp road and continued on the other side.  I wasn't feeling great at this point.  I was already working hard and tired.  Sure, I could maintain, but I wasn't going to hold off Justin for too long.  And then what - who else would run me down?  We hit the North South Trail, and then took the next sharp right onto the next unnamed mtn bike trail.  I got a long look back and saw no one.  What?  I said to Justin I guess this was only a six man race.  We were only two miles in (at the most) and there was already a huge gap between us and the rest of the field.  I guess the opening pace was very aggressive.  I continued to lead Justin on this trail.  He seemed content to go my pace for now.  We reached the ridge trail.  I did my best to keep the pace hot, even though the obstacles slow you down.  Finally when we reached the wide double track, Justin moved along side of me.  I wasn't ready to let him go by, so I upped my pace and hoped to reach the single track first.  No dice.  He sprinted by at the last second and dropped the hammer.  I  tried to stick with him for a while, but it was too much.  He then sprinted up the steep climb near the sand pit, and that was that.  He was gone.  I was a little disappointed, but this is what I expected going in. 

I could now run my own uncomfortably hard pace alone.   I was borderline paranoid that I was going to get chased down by others, although I couldn't see anyone behind me.  I was in no man's land.  I pushed through the brutal campsite sections.  I was getting hot, so I pulled my hat up above my ears.  No big deal, except that there's Scott Mason taking pictures.  Great.  And he set up at the awkward water crossing.  I was anticipating the jump, trying to look not dorky, possibly even athletic.  It was not to be.  I motored on through the uneven campground and knew I was coming to the end of lap one. 

I was greeted at the finish area by my cheering wife and kids.  I hadn't looked at my watch, and I was guessing 35 minutes.  Mike tells me 32:20!  That's pretty darn fast.  This made me feel a lot better about my race.  Sure those other guys were way ahead of me, but I was putting together a fast time for me.  Adding to this was the sight of Justin closing in on Jackman on the far end of the field.  Maybe Bob was tiring after trying to keep up with Derek.  Could I catch him in lap two? 

I was re-energized.  Sure I was in pain - my lower core/upper legs felt super tight.  But I only had five more miles, which seemed manageable.  No one was that close behind me, although on really long looks I could see Todd Bennett's blue shirt.  I know from experience  that he is more than capable of beating me in a trail race, so I wasn't going to let up.  I figured in the early going that I wasn't as fast as lap one, but I could definitely finish this lap faster.  Alone I ran and honestly the time went by rather quickly.  On the ridge, I saw Todd again, and figured I was a minute ahead of him.  After cruising the wide double track to the bog bridge section I looked back again.  What?  Where did that guy in the green shirt come from?  Where was Todd?  Yikes!  I pushed the bog bridges, determined to put more room on whoever green shirt guy was.  I looked back again once I entered the annoying campground section and there he was, and he was closing in.  I knew there was only a mile left.  Pick it up!  The piles of leaves, thick sand, and random obstacles were not helping.  I knew things were getting bad when I approached a woman on the trail.  She stepped aside and said, "Nice job guys".  That's guys - plural.  We emerged at an open area before the stream crossing and green shirt guy flew by me.  Noooo!! 

I nimbly jumped the stream this time (probably because Scott wasn't there snapping pictures anymore) and then worked through the next sloppy sections.  I looked back one last time and Todd (or anyone else) wasn't in sight.  Relief!  I was getting close to the end, so I picked it up even more.  I reached the last campground section and began sprinting as my family cheered me on.  1:06:09 was my finishing time.  Sweet! 

I'm really happy with that time on a 10 mile trail race.  I just beat 1:10 at a 10 mile trail race last year.  My lap splits seemed pretty close too (at least in my mind at the time I finished) - 32:21 / 33:48.  I'm glad there wasn't a big let down lap two running alone and after a fast start to lap one.  I probably should start these races slower, as Greg explained to me over beers later that night.  I know it makes sense.  I just feel so good at the start and I want to be up front and at least give myself a chance.  Can I run smarter at Big River in two weeks?  Probably not.  But that race is different right?  See everyone then. 

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Brrr-lingame Week: 3-17-14 to 3-23-14

Muddy beat me to the punch with his post last night, but I've had a lot of the same sort of things going on in my head about running lately.  Monday night I had anxiety dreams about the race on Saturday.  I can't wait for it.  I feel like I've gotten myself into top shape with all the training the last few weeks.  With a really good taper this week, I should be able to perform well at the race on Saturday.  The funny thing is that I don't feel as confident about where I might place in the race.  Everyone else seems to be in great shape as well.  I might run my heart out and finish 5th.  It is what it is.  I will be happy if I do give it my all. 

Getting back on the trails last week was awesome.  At first, there was a lot of mud and some icy spots still mixed in.  By the weekend, things were back to normal.  I really enjoyed my two runs in Burlingame last weekend.  I can't wait to hit up Big River again, especially with the half marathon looming. 

Monday: 7 miles - Ryan Park trails alone.  A very busy day at work and a short window for a run.  At the last minute I decided to do a workout today, rather than a day any closer to the race.  My plan was to run the powerline loop Strava segment two times, with a few minutes of rest in between.  My GPS measures the segment at 1.5 miles, but it feels like closer to 2.  It's a nice hard loop with many short steep hills.  I was looking for sub 10 minutes on both, thinking that my PR was 9:43 (guessing).  I remember running super hard to get that PR and my legs weren't feeling that fresh today.  The first loop felt difficult and not that fast, but my time was 9:37.  Wow.  I jogged around some trails for 5 plus minutes and then did a second loop.  9:26!  This one felt easier than the first.  It turns out that my PR was 9:30, so today I ran 2 of my 3 fastest times on this loop (40 attempts on Strava).  I felt way better about my speed on the trails today than on Saturday.  Maybe it was because Muddy wasn't there to kick my butt. 

Tuesday: 7 miles - Calf Pasture Point (bike path/beach/trail) alone.  This was just a short easy run - the first of many this week.  It just the right mix of vitamin D, fresh air, break from work, but not taxing on the legs.  I ran the point loop twice, enjoying the low tide, wind at my back, and the decent footing.  Total time: 53 minutes. 

Wednesday: 7 miles - Old Mountain Field trails with Galoob.  I met up with Mike for part of this run.  Just a really easy cruise around the single track trails.  Total time: 59 minutes. 

Thursday: 5.5 miles - Ryan Park trails with Brad and Dan.  Lunch meeting.  Easy going.  Total time: 47 minutes. 

Friday: 5 miles - Brrr-lingame course marking with Galoob.  I was able to meet up and help mark the tricky campground section.  Sometimes I would stop my watch, others I would leave it on while I was standing still, but I was out there for an hour and twenty minutes. 

Saturday: 13 miles - Brrr-lingame 10Mile Trail Race, 1:06:09 - 7th place.  Separate write up to follow. 

Sunday: 8.5 miles - Burlingame trails solo.  Despite some lower core/upper legs soreness from the race, this run was fantastic.  I'm in love again with the variety of trails I have from my doorstep.  The trails are in awesome shape.  I ran out of time to complete my intended route, but still was able to loop around Sammy C's, to VG to Schoolhouse Pond, to Secret, and then back to Sammy C's.  At the intersection of Secret and Sammy C's, I heard voices up ahead and then saw another runner veering off on the more secret section of Secret.  It was Beth!  What a badass.  I then saw three mtn bikers resting (as usual).  Instead of letting me pass, they took off in front of me.  I stopped to give them a head start and then ran 2 of the 3 down in the next 1/4 mile section to the next intersection.  Fun!!  Headed home on the road, which was a bit of a bummer, but overall I love these Sunday Burlingame runs. 

Overall: The race was a blast.  I wish I was closer to the lead guys, but everyone is in top shape right now.  The next race - Big River Half - is in two weeks.  This is another race I'm focused on, so I won't be doing anything too crazy training-wise before then. 

Weekly Total: 53 miles
Last Week: 71 miles
Year to Date: 696 miles
March Total: 223 miles

Thursday, March 13, 2014

One more Big Week?: 3-10-14 to 3-16-14

I came into this week looking for another of high miles and lots of intensity, but my motivation is waning.  Instead, I'm hoping for 60+ miles and a workout or two.  Brrr-lingame 10 Mile Trail Race is next Saturday, the 22nd.  Trails are clearing nicely in southern RI, and I can't wait to race again on them! 

Monday: 9 miles - Ryan Park trails (half snow covered) alone.  I had to stay close to work and run by myself today.  I wasn't too inspired about running.  I opted to try Ryan Park, knowing that there was going to still be snow on the ground in places there.  It was warm enough that I had good traction on any snow and ice.  The going was just slow which was fine.  And kind of hard.  There were nice stretches of muddy trails (including the railbed) to be had.  I was shocked to see how deep the snow was on the powerline - doesn't it get excellent sun exposure? 

Tuesday: 10 miles - Hilly road T-pace run solo.  This workout just sort of happened.  The weather was super nice - 60 degrees with filtered sunshine.  My legs, which had been beat up, were feeling re-energized.  I decided to run a 10 mile lollipop course that is rather hilly I did a couple of weeks back.  My plan was to enjoy the day and keep the pace on the peppy side.  After a half mile I checked my watch and saw 6:24 pace.  I was feeling good, and decided to keep it up.  The next 3 miles are all uphill.  I didn't look at my watch, but figured I was slowing down.  I could make up time on the downhill miles.  Running up Stony Lane was hard.  The same could be said for South Rd - first because of the strong wind in my face, and then all the climbing.  Once I reached the top of the hill on Shippee Rd, I just let my legs go.  At about 4.5 miles in, I checked my watch and saw that my run was averaging 6:30 pace.  Okay - now let's watch that go down on the next 2+ downhill miles.  I reached Tillinghast Rd and worried that I'd soon begin climbing again.  I was wrong - it only climbs at the end near South Road.  I pushed hard up this steep hill.  South Road was into the wind and a gradual uphill.  It was not easy to maintain my pace (overall pace had dropped to 6:24 by this point).  Finally I reached Narrow Lane and it was flat and then downhill for the next two miles.  I let my legs do their thing.  My overall pace crept lower and lower, and by the time I reached the bottom of the hill on Stony Lane, I was now at 6:18 average pace. My finish was on Rte 2 - not a fun road to run on.  The worst part was that I had a tough hill climb up to Quaker Lane Liquors.  I really dug in and then descended the other side until I reached 10.00 miles on my watch.  Total time: 1:02:52, 6:17 average pace (which corresponds to my Daniels' MP and adjusted TP for 10 miles).  The grade adjusted pace for the run was 6:13.  This run felt great.  Huge confidence boost. 

Wednesday: 11 miles - Rome Point trails and beach alone.  I beat the rain and it was still warm today - 52 degrees.  The issue was a very strong SE wind.  I ran around Rome Point, happy to see the trails were finally clear of snow and ice.  Some spots were super muddy, others were dry.  After wandering around for 45 minutes, I hit the beach.  I ran directly into the headwind, which paired with the terrible footing, was rough.  I made it under the bridge and to the end of Plum Beach and then had to turn around.  This was much better - the strong wind was pushing me over the obstacles below my feet.  I ran even further on the beach, all the way to the point.  I then finished up on trails back to my car. 

Thursday: 10 miles - Ryan Park trails alone.  Very cold day with a fresh coating of snow.  Funny thing was that it was already melting despite the 21 degree temperature - gotta love the March sun angle.  I wandered around the west side for a few miles and then made my way over to the east.  I was happy to make the best of a crappy weather day. 

Friday: 7 miles - Old Mountain trails alone.  I had another busy day at work, and couldn't get out for my break until after 3PM.  I parked at Old Mountain and ran the 5K course twice with a little extra thrown in.  It was cold in the wind.  My feet are fatiguing with all the trail work this week.  I guess I need to get used to it again.  I wasn't going fast, but I was trying not to go slow. 

Saturday: 15 miles - early morning Burlingame trails with Muddy and Jeff.  We met in the dark at 6:30AM.  It wasn't too cold, but damp, and eventually there was light rain.  We ran from the picnic area, through the Kettle Preserve and onto the Brrr-lingame course single track.  There were a couple of icy spots, but not much mud, and the race should be fast.  We reached the far end of the campground and then figured out the rest of Mike's course - pleased to see there were some fun hidden single track sections mixed in.  We then embarked on a planned workout.  I wanted to run approx. 4 miles of single track on the course hard.  This would be good practice for the race next week both in terms of intensity and familiarity.  I set the pace at first.  My feet and lower core were feeling sore and tired on the 1 hour warm up.  Running fast felt pretty good, but it was a hard pace to maintain.  I was getting hot and took off my gloves, dropping one.  I stopped to retrieve it and then Muddy took over.  He killed the rest of the tempo.  He would pull away from us and then have to wait to know which way to go at intersections.  I was tiring and had the added pressure of Jeff running behind me on the many downhill sections.  The whole ordeal finished on the bog bridges and we stopped at the Vin Gormley Trail.  It was a nice 23 minute hard effort.  Too fast to maintain for 10 miles, but a good workout.  My body fatigue kicked back in once we began moving again.  I was struggling to keep Muddy and Jeff in my earshot.  We ran out to the observation tower in the Kettle Preserve.  Then we returned to our cars, where I bid them adieu. 

Sunday: 9 miles - Burlingame trail loop alone in the afternoon.  After a nice nap, I got my act together for a run.  I was excited to run my favorite local trails in Burlingame from my house again after not being able to for a couple of months.  I entered on Burdickville Rd and headed down to the river.  I then ran the river loop.  This trail is so fun and needs some TLC, before nature takes it back.  I ran the double track to the Ledge Trail.  I began climbing and then saw two men on the trail - one peeing in front of the other guy.  I wasn't sure what to do, but I just continued on and passed by them without incident.  I then looped back on the double track to Buckeye Brook Rd where I picked up the Vin Gormley Trail.  I then jumped on Schoolhouse Pond Trail.  I caught a mtn biker from behind, and then had to wait for a section to make a pass - kind of fun, kind of annoying - they saw me and didn't let me go by.  I passed a few more mtn bikers (resting - a common theme?) as I took Sammy C's back toward Buckeye Brook Rd.  I cut my legs up on the overgrown Governor's Trail and decided to hoof it back on the road to my house.  GPS really doesn't do justice the work I was putting in on the technical stuff.  This was a really fun run and a great end to another big week - thankfully mostly all on trails. 

Weekly Total: 71 miles
Last Week: 74 miles
Year to Date: 643 miles
March Total: 170 miles

Thursday, March 6, 2014

Chasing Miles Continued: Week of 3-3-14 to 3-9-14

After the big miles last week, my legs are feeling fine, but not ready for workouts.  Hopefully I will get some T-pace stuff in later in the week.  Check out the new Jack Daniels' Running Calculator page on my blog courtesy of the Run SMART Project. 

Monday: 8.5 miles - SK roads and bike path with Galoob.  This was an easy lunch run and just an excuse to gab about running.  The bike path was a little slick, thanks to a fresh coating of snow over either pavement or ice. 

Tuesday: 16.5 miles - long NK ramble (half roads, half snow/ice covered trails) alone.  I haven't tried LSD in a while, but today was perfect for it.  Work was a ghost town.  I had no motivation to run even a normal easy pace, never mind a workout.  The weather was drab.  This just screamed a nice Long Slow Day.  I parked at Rome Point and began wandering.  The trails here were still a nightmare.  The trails are literally glaciers.  Sometimes I could find uncovered sections on the edges.  I didn't stay here long, and popped out on Terre Mar Rd.  I then made the long road trek over to the high lot for Ryan Park.  I don't necessarily like doing long runs by myself, but alternating roads and trails keeps me distracted and happy.  Ryan Park was mostly still snow covered, except there were longer stretches of bare trail on the railbed.  The Rte 4 trail was hardpacked snow, most of the time anyway.  Every once in a while I would sink in.  I ran in here for 35 minutes or so, and it was challenging.  I then ran different roads back to Rome Point.  My legs were fatiguing, and I wished I wasn't wearing trail shoes.  I finally entered Rome Point and suffered on the glaciers for a few last miles.  I averaged about 7:50 pace on the roads and who knows what on the "snow".  I'll give myself an extra half mile credit. 

Wednesday: 10 miles - Gilbert Stuart Rd hill repeats solo.  Another gray, cold day.  Another day of lacking motivation.  I parked again at Rome Point and headed over to the big hill on Gilbert Stuart Rd.  I decided on some controlled repeats.  I still ran them rather hard, but not all out as I typically would.  I worked on my descending form a bit.  Not sure if I can change anything, but it's definitely a weak spot in my running.  I was happy with the overall pace on the day, especially since my legs were pretty beat up from yesterday's run. 

Thursday: 14 miles - 3 x 2 miles @ T-Pace workout in Narragansett with Galoob.  I let Mike talk me into this.  I couldn't stomach another solo run, so I just went along with his plan.  Daniels workout day: 3 x 2 miles @ T-Pace with 2 minute recoveries.  My target was 11:50 (5:55 pace).  I wasn't sure how it would go considering how many miles I've logged the last 10 days.  It all went well.  Results: 11:41, 11:04, 11:53.  I ran each one exactly two miles according to my watch and then Strava adjusted things slightly, so maybe the 2nd one wasn't that fast, but then again it was mostly downhill with the wind at my back.  The last one wasn't flat and the wind was an issue, so I'm fine with it just being a couple of seconds off.    It felt good to run fast.  The five mile cool down into the bitter wind on dead legs was killer. 

Friday: 7 miles - Calf Pasture Point loops alone.  My legs are exhausted, especially my quads from the hills on Wednesday.  Today's run went much better than I thought.  In fact, I actually enjoyed it.  Although not as warm as first forecasted, the mid 30's with the wind at my back was rather pleasant.  The bike path still has stretches of ice/snow, as does the main trail in the woods.  The beach has changed shape in spots since the last time I was here. 

Saturday: 15 miles - Charlestown roads workout/long run with Muddy, Galoob, and Garvin.  We met up at the bakery and used a scone reward as motivation to complete today's task - 6 miles @ MP (for myself and Muddy).  We had a sweet, not flat, 2 mile loop to use for this.  Muddy and I met a half hour earlier to log some extra miles.  The four of us then made our way to the loop and then got to work.  What's fun about marathon pace, is that we were still able to talk and joke at the same time. 
After my ambitious two weeks of running, there was no way I would have done this today without help from friends.  Conversation was a distraction.  The six miles passed relatively quickly.  The loop may have been a tad short of 2 miles, since the overall time was 37:02 for the six.  Strava had the GAP for the six miles as 6:18, so that's perfect.  Mike was anxious for scones and pushed the pace on the cool back.  We were doing 6:50 pace and I was suffering behind the rest of them.  The post-run feast did not disappoint! 

Sunday: 3 miles on two runs.  First I took my son down to the Burlingame campground to check out some of the trails for the upcoming Brrr-lingame 10 Mile Trail Race course.  We ran the zigzagging trails from the guardhouse and then returned via the North South Trail.  As I had hoped, most of the trails in the moraine were clear of snow.  The backside of hills and some of the dark valleys still had spots with icy snow, but they too should be gone soon.  I stopped to drag a huge dead oak tree from the trail.  I was pretty surprised I could actually move it at all.  Bob Jackman will be pleased he won't have to run into it.  The run measured 2.1 miles on GPS, and in reality a little longer.  We ran for 35 minutes.  When we got home, my daughter wanted to run on our home trail loops with me.  The plan was to do three laps for a mile, but she lost interest after (really during) lap two.   We switched to playing tag instead.  The easy miles were just what I needed and really fun. 

Weekly Total: 74 miles
Last Week: 74 miles
Year to Date: 572 miles
March Total: 99 miles