Thursday, December 5, 2013

Weekly Log: 12.2.13 - 12.8.13

Here we are. The last month of the year. The goal is 1800 miles. I need 170 more to make it happen. Let's do this.

Monday - Smithfield, RI - 7.1 miles

Looking for something new, I decided to take the powerlines north from Fidelity. I've never gone beyond where they hit Rocky Branch Road and thought this would be an interesting run. It was very foggy which made the environment seem more isolated than it was. Saw lots of deer throughout - probably 15 or so. Watch out guys! I crossed Rocky Branch Rd and continued another long section of powerlines - there were some swampy areas to contend with but it seemed that others use these roads as there were paths to avoid most of the muck.

I crossed Iron Mine Hill Road and this is where the powerline road became really interesting. Some elevation gains that left me overlooking a busier Route 104. The trail veered in a different direction and I explored briefly but I was up against the clock and turned around. Looking at Google Maps, it seems that soon I would have encountered the busy North Smithfield Expressway which would be difficult to cross anyway. There appeared to be lots of side trails between Rocky Branch and Iron Mine roads - perhaps I'll explore them another day.

Tuesday - Charlestown, RI - 2.4 miles

Ab Ripper X (15 minutes)

Took the dog for an easy jog in the early foggy AM. Afterwards I fired up the Ab Ripper for the first time in 1.5 months. Oof. I made it through but I wasn't able to keep up with some of the exercises like I used to.

Wednesday - 0 miles

I chumped out and slept in, closing the window on any opportunity to work out. Abs got progressively more sore throughout the day until they hurt when I cough. DOMS.

Thursday - North Smithfield, RI - 6.1 miles

Push-ups (55 total in 4 sets)

Did a few sets of push-ups (standard, military & wide) in the morning to get back into the swing of things. Then I followed through on my intention for the day and went to the track to do a speed workout. No excuses today! I decided to go with 400m x 8 with a 200m jog in between each. By the third one I was pretty winded and began each 200m by walking. Eight intervals seemed too much. I talked myself down to just doing six. But after the sixth one I knew that I could gut out two more so I stuck with the initial eight. Very pleased I followed through on my plan and happy with the consistency of the 400s. Track work sure sucks but I always feel a great sense of accomplishment once it's over.

Splits: 78 / 77 / 78 / 79 / 79 / 78 / 79 / 79

Friday - Charlestown, RI - 13.5 miles

I had the day off from work (huzzah!) and started the day off by bottling my first mead and some Dead Ringer IPA (a Northern Brewer clone of the famous Bell's Two Hearted Ale.)  The mead is very sweet.  Sort of like a dessert wine.  I think it's drinkable now but time is supposed to make it truly good.  At any rate, both of these were gallon batches.  Bottling the mead was straightforward and easy but the IPA bottling was a comedy of errors.  I almost forgot the priming sugar, the bottling siphon began to leak and then stopped working mid-bottle.  The last couple bottles were filled in a very unorthodox fashion - they are going to be very oxidized and probably taste like cardboard but hopefully they'll make the rest of the batch taste awesome in comparison.

Brewing adventures over, I laced up and headed to Burlingame to get about in about 12 miles.  It looked to be rain-free for the time being so I figured wouldn't get too wet.  I started from the beach and headed over to the Kettle Pond trails first before hitting up the trails south of the campgrounds.  By now it had begun raining - guess the weather wasn't going to cooperate afterall.  Then I jumped on the Vin Gormley trail to make the loop back to my car.  Heard a good amount of gunfire but it was off in the distance - I'm guessing from North Burlingame.

The rain picked up as I went and during the Buckeye Brook Road section I looked down and got an unwanted surprise - more bloody nipples!  What the hell?  I bodyglided and everything.  Luckily I had my nuclear orange Li'l Rhody shirt on and caught it in time.   Also lucky that it wasn't cold despite the rain.  I threw the shirt over my head and continued on.  A good run and I was happy to be done and out of the rain but this nipple thing is becoming a pain in the ass.

Later, I bartered with Em to give the dog his afternoon walk (her job) in exchange for her doing dishes (my job.)  Did an easy two mile jog with Oliver in light rain.  I must admit that in all ways he's a great dog save one - he barks and growls at every person/dog we meet on the road.   It's annoying and embarrassing.

Saturday - Charlestown, RI - 3 miles

Took the dog out for three miles in the afternoon.  Pace was pretty good - mid 8s.


Sunday - Charlestown, RI - 13.2 miles

Decided to run down the beach from Charlestown to South Kingstown for my long run.  It was dark when I set out and figured I'd get to the beach for the sunrise.  It was high 20s but I wore shorts which proved to be the correct choice.  Was never too hot/too cold on the run.  A mile down the beach I came upon a seal pup hanging out on shore.  He was about 2.5 feet long.  I'm thinking maybe he was injured as he didn't try to move or do much of anything when I approached.  I got within a few feet of it.  Never been so close to one before.  It was very cute.  Looked sort of like a dog with severe birth defects for limbs.  Bizarre creature really.

I wished it the best and continued on.  I had the beach to myself and the sunrise was pretty great.  Once I reached S.K. Town Beach I took the roads back which were less wonderful.  I wore the 730s and my feet were tired by the end.  Am I really considering a road marathon for next spring?  I dunno, the second half of this run had me questioning if I really wanted to subject myself to that. Once at home I called the Mystic Aquarium to report a possible injured seal pup.  They said they'd send out a volunteer to check it out.


Weekly Mileage: 45.4 miles

Year to Date: 1,679.4 miles

I've put together a couple good weeks lately.  Looking forward to slightly less mileage next week and my last race of the year - the Newport Christmas 10k.

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