Thursday, February 20, 2014

Weekly Log: 2.17.14 - 2.23.14

Monday - Charlestown, RI - 7.4 miles

It's President's Day and I actually have it off!  After a morning brew session and some fun in the snow, I went for a run on the other side of Route 1.  I started off at a quick 7 minute pace and it got faster as I went.  I stuck to the beach roads.  So many nice houses.  So many of them unplowed and deserted in the winter.  It was a beautiful day - roads were clear of debris and I had to roll up my sleeves I was so warm.  The beach was impressive as the snow turned immediately to sand where the tide came in.  I kept the snappy pace on the way back and while I was breathing hard the pace was maintainable (at least for a while.)  A good honest effort.

Tuesday - Charlestown, RI - 3 miles

Ab Ripper X (15 minutes) / 155 push-ups (standard/military/wide) 25/25/25/20/20/20/20

Standard dog jog and core/push-up work to start off this shortened work week.

Wednesday - Smithfield, RI - 5 miles

My elbow feels "off" after yesterday's push-ups.  Not painful per se, but it doesn't feel quite right.  I didn't have much oomph in the morning for an early workout anyway so passing yet again on Yoga X wasn't a terribly difficult decision.   Instead I planned to run before work but with all the snow I knew it would be on roads and the list of places to run was short.  I ended up just driving to work without making a decision and I sat in the parking lot, very close to just skipping the run altogether despite the fact that I was all geared up and ready to go.

Finally I told myself to just get on with it and I headed out on the Fidelity walking paths.  Luckily they had been snowblown.  Had they not, I may have just quit right there.  But they were clear and I ended up using them and a short unfrequented road section to make a loop that I ran four times.  It was beautiful out there and quite warm.  My calf started to ache with a mile to go but otherwise it was a good run.  A pretty unremarkable run but I'm pleased that I won the mental battle and got five miles in after being so close to quitting.

Thursday - North Kingstown, RI - 7.4 miles

The temp is warming up a bit but it's still cold at night and the roads were icy in the morning.  I'm itching to get back on the trails but I figured they're still pretty much not runnable and I really didn't want to slog for 2 or 3 miles and then call it quits.  So more roads it would be.  I mapped out a loop in North Kingstown close to Ezri's daycare.  I parked at a Park 'n Ride on Route 2 and then took South Road up into the hills.  I figured these country roads might be a little icy but at least the traffic would be light.  I was right on both counts.  Traction wasn't great but it was never too slick and I never fell.  The houses became more luxurious and massive as I went.  Frenchtown Road was busier and less fun but then I took Tillinghast Road back which was deserted.  I passed a couple open spaces on this run that could be explored once the snow clears.  All the side roads were small neighborhoods which ended in cul-de-sacs.  Lots of woods surrounded this loop - I'm sure there are trails to discover.  I expect I'll return to this area in the Spring.

Friday - Wolf Hill, Smithfield, RI - 6.1 miles

With the warmer weather and recent rain, I decided to try my luck at Wolf Hill.  I was sick of streets - I yearned to be back in the woods.  I knew Wolf Hill always got a lot of foot traffic (even in winter) so I was hopeful that the trail would already be packed down.  It had been but as soon I stepped into it I knew it would still be slow going.  Boots and snowshoe tracks had cleared a wide path on the trail but I still would break through more of the slushy snow.  Nevertheless it was great being out there in the white silence after battling cars all week on the dirty roads.  Only a couple miles in and I was tired but I pushed myself to make it to the top of the quarry for some splendid views.  Then I made my way down to the nearby roads.  It was great fun barreling down the trails in the thick snow.  I didn't think about the fact that the sidewalks would be covered up so I ducked into a nearby neighborhood and ran a couple miles there before returning to my car.  A side trail near the entrance to the neighborhood led to a huge groomed hill that was no doubt the mecca of all the kids in the neighborhood.

Saturday - 0 miles

I opted out of the early morning group run since I got home late on Friday night from band practice.  Then we drove to an indoor water park "resort" in Connecticut.  Made it easy to call it a rest day.  But I mapped out a run for Sunday morn.

Sunday - Waterbury, CT - 14 miles

We stayed at the Coco Keys water park/hotel in Waterbury, CT.  We were underwhelmed.  It's absolute madness in the waterpark, the hotel rooms weren't in great condition, the staff at the hotel couldn't care less and insane children were wandering the halls and slamming doors past midnight.  But I was looking forward to a long run in the morning to check out the region.  I scoped out the area on Strava and found that a guy had created a massive amount of segments not far from the hotel.  I printed out a Strava screenshot and went segment hunting.

Most of the roads had minimal shoulder room with all the snow but I started at 6 AM with little light and less traffic.  The run was a mix of pushing the pace on the segments and easy 8+ minute miles otherwise.  I ran on some nice country roads.  There were some good sized hills and nifty houses that dug into steep hills overlooking frozen lakes.  I nabbed a whole bunch of segments from the poor bastard and then made my way back to the hotel for one more trip into the waterpark before heading home.  The park was much less crowded first thing in the morning and made for a more enjoyable experience.

Weekly Mileage: 43 miles

Year to Date: 286.2 miles

Good week with runs every day except Saturday.  I'd like to try to up the mileage even more next week before tapering off the week of the Ocean's Run Half Marathon.

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