Friday, January 27, 2017

Weekly Log: 1.23.17 - 1.29.17

I'm heading up to NH this weekend for some winter hiking.  Can't wait!  Until then it looks like a week of cold, wet runs awaits me here in Rhode Island.

Monday - 0 miles

5:30 minutes of planks (longest - 3:05)

I got into my running garb at lunch and even made it out to my car but the cold mix of rain and sleet was more than I could bear.  I admit that I gave up, went back inside and changed.  Then I went and got Wendys.  Shameful.

Tuesday - East Providence, RI - 8 miles

6 minutes of planks (longest - 3:03)

After yesterday's shame I was determined to get out and run today.  It was a cold sideways rain when I started on the East Bay bike path but the rain stopped soon after and the four miles out to Riverside went quickly.  I was moving well in the low 7s.  A big honkin' tree had fell onto the path just before it reached Riverside but I climbed through and kept going.  Was going to turn around at 3.5 miles but I felt so good I kept going to the 4 mile mark.  As soon as I turned around I realized I was duped - the wind blasted me in the face and the rain really began to come down to spite me.  But I kept the pace up on the way back and was really satisfied when I finished the run.  My right nip began to sting for the last couple miles but luckily I made it back to the car before the bleeding began.

Wednesday - 0 miles

5:30 minutes of planks (longest - 3:05)

My poor nip is tender from yesterday's run.  And I was having some aching in my left knee.  That and my complete lack of enthusiasm for running resulted in another zero.  I don't feel as bad about this one as Monday.  Just not into it today.  Ran some errands instead.

Thursday - Seekonk, MA - 6.3 miles

6:30 minutes of planks (longest: 3:38)

Quite the pattern this week.  Bail on running one day and the next day tough it out in cold wet conditions.  Despite the constant drizzle I made it back to the Seekonk High track for the second week in a row.  More 400s.  Ran 8 of 'em like last week but my pace was a bit faster.  Progress I suppose.  It rained lightly throughout and I was afraid for my tender nip as I had completely forgot to bring bandaids or lubricant.  Luckily it seemed unaffected by the rain.  Really glad I got this run done.

Friday - 0 miles

6:30 minutes of planks (3:25)

Three days off this week.  S'ok, I'm just considering it a taper for the hard effort on the trails I'll be putting in this weekend.  New Hampshire ho!

Saturday - New Hampshire - 12.5 miles

A tough snowshoe hike up Mt Carrigain to start the day - didn't quite make it and turned around at 4.5 miles.  A much easier 3.5 miler up Peaked Mountain next to North Conway later in the afternoon.  Maybe I'll write up a report later.

Sunday - New Hampshire - 10 miles

Great hike up to North and South Kinsman past Lonesome Lake.  #34 and #35 on the 4000 footer list for me.  Perhaps a write up for this one too if I get around to it.

Weekly Mileage: 36.8 miles
Year to Date: 158.9 miles

Great weekend of winter hiking in the Whites and I learned some good lessons.  I know it's kind of silly to just lump that mileage along with my regular running mileage but slag off!  That's what I'm gonna do!

Friday, January 20, 2017

Weekly Log: 1.16.17 - 1.22.17

Monday - South Kingstown, RI - 7 miles

3 minutes of planks (longest: 1:35)

Cold morning with a little bit of snow still on the ground.  I went over to DuVal for some easy trail miles.  My legs have felt beat last night from 15 miles in Big River but they felt better today.  Two miles in I tripped on a tiny tree stump and got laid out.  Smashed my big toe, scrapped both knees and an elbow.  Tore my tights and strained my shoulder.  After a minute I was up and running again but I was feeling it for the rest of the run.  Finished with 7 miles but the trails done beat me up good.

Tuesday - 0 miles

Definitely needed a rest day to lick my wounds from yesterday.  Also first day this year I didn't plank.  I was trying to keep up with the Facebook plank challenge but I think days off will only help me.

Wednesday - East Providence, RI - 7.1 miles

6 minutes of planks (longest: 3:10)

Cold and drizzly outside.  My knees aren't as sore today and my shoulder pain has subsided.  Time to get back out there.  I did a loop I often run though I went in reverse this time.  It encompasses the trails behind the Seekonk Library and the Ten Mile River bikepath.  It's a fine lunch loop and the weather actually was pretty good for running.

Thursday - Seekonk, MA - 7 miles

6 minutes of planks (longest: 3:21)

Mid 40s today and I was feeling frisky so I went to the Seekonk High School for a track workout.  I went with 8 x 400s.  Went pretty well - most were in the 88-86 second range but my last one was at 81 seconds.  Perhaps I should have pushed them faster but they felt hard enough over all.  Looking back over some past logs, I had actually been running them a few years ago at the 78-82 range.  Whoa!  I have some work cut out if I want to hit those numbers again.  Right knee was pretty sore during the cooldown - I'm going to attribute that to my digger on Monday.

Friday - Charlestown, RI - 8.8 miles

So I broke the bathtub last night.  I tried to switch the faucet and made it worse.  Much worse.  BUT that meant I had to stay home today to wait ont he plumber.  Hooray!  So I went for an early run at the Carter Preserve.  Some major mud at the powerline section.  My thoughts often turned to today's inauguration misery.  What a fucking world we find ourselves in.  Oh well, nothing to do but run on!

Saturday - 0 miles

5 minutes of planks (longest: 2:38)

Sunday - Exeter/North Kingstown, RI - 14.5 miles

12 easy morning miles in Arcadia with Muddy.  Despite chilled hands at the beginning it quickly warmed up and was nearly 50 degrees by midday.  Ran just long enough for me to justify calling this a long run.  Met my mom and Ezri at Rome Point.  They were already at the end so I ran down to where they were watching the seals and we walked back. 

Weekly Mileage: 43 miles
Year to Date: 122 miles

Tuesday, January 17, 2017

Weekly Log: 1.9.17 - 1.15.17

Monday - East Providence, RI - 7.1 miles

5:30 minutes of planks (longest - 2:32)

BRRR.  It was a brisk 20 degrees outside but luckily the city didn't get as much snow as South County.  I went over to the 10 Mile River bikepath.  As with last winter they plowed the first 1/2 mile of it.  After that there were plenty of tracks in the snow.  I broke trail in the woods for a bit and then returned to the bike path and followed some of the most well trod paths.  Running in fresh snow wasn't too bad but I was getting a good amount in my shoes. It was tough work at times and I certainly wasn't cold by the end of the run.

Tuesday - Charlestown, RI - 7 miles

4:20 minutes of planks (longest - 2:19)

There was no heat in the office so I got to work from home today.  Rejoice!  Wasn't sure about the snow/traction in the woods so I opted to run along the beach.  Tide was very low.  Left ankle was very sore for the second half of this one - I think from the slope of the beach.  While playing video games at night my left calf seized up something awful.

Wednesday - East Providence, RI - 4.2 miles

4 minutes of planks (longest - 2:00)

My calf is very sore to the touch today.  But I thought a short easy jog might help warm it up.  Speaking of warm - it was 52 degrees outside today!  The snow from the weekend storm is pretty much all gone now.  Did four miles on the East Bay bike path.  Calf ached throughout.  I should do some foam rolling tonight.

Thursday - 0 miles

5 minutes of planks (longest - 2:31)

My calf didn't feel much better after yesterday's run (big surprise) so I decided to be reasonable and take a rest day today.  Friggin' 60 degrees outside.

Friday - East Providence, RI - 8.7 miles

4:15 planks (longest: 1:55)

I decided to run the loop up around Pawtucket and over to Blackstone Blvd.  I meant for it to be a slow run but my body was responding right off the bat so I kept it up.  I was fighting the wind early on but once I began the return trip I pushed the pace on the Blackstone running path.  I kept it up to the office and ended up with a pretty good progression run.

Saturday - 0 miles

3:50 planks (longest: 1:45)

It wasn't until I got home last night that I realized that I had a pretty nasty blood blister on my fourth toe.  Apparently the Hoka's really cramped my little toes together.  It was painful to walk with for a little while but I got used to it eventually.  Hopefully running with it won't be an issue.

Sunday - West Greenwich, RI - 15 miles

4:00 minutes planks (longest: 2:03)

Early morning running plans fell apart and then I lost motivation and played Grand Theft Auto.  By midday I had to take Ezri to my parents and that perked me up for a long run.  I decided to go with Big River and stick to almost all trails.  The parking lot at Greasy Joe's was packed with cars.  Mostly mountain bikers I'm guessing but I also encountered many hikers with dogs.  I did a big counterclockwise loop, sticking to the New London Turnpike until I was past Hopkins Hill Road.  Then I took twisty trails that ran along the ponds and waterways of Big River.  Sawmill and the BR Expressway brought me over to the Hopkins Hill parking lot and it wasn't until I approached Carr Pond that I began to feel the effects of the long run.  A fun run overall and I need to keep these long efforts up as my legs were toast later in the day.

Weekly Mileage: 42 miles

Year to Date: 78.8 miles

Wednesday, January 11, 2017

Resolution 5k 2017

Official time: 21:12.  16th overall.  10th in Age Group.  Results here.

Always a fun way to start the year, Mike Galoob's Resolution 5k is a mix of beach and non-technical trails.  The conditions have generally been pretty good for winter but this year looked to mix things up with an impending snow storm.  The beach was hardpacked but the trails had a choppy snow based on my warm-up.  It was cold with the wind but not numbingly so.  Ten minutes before the race began, snow began to fall at a sideways angle from the heavy wind.

And we're off! - Photo by Scott Mason

We lined up on the beach and were off, with people taking a variety of lines towards the turnaround.  The wind was at our back and I tried to monitor my pace based on my position to everyone else.  Not long after the turnaround Leslie O'Dell and a couple guys passed me.  I tried to hold on but they began to put distance on me.  We were running into the wind now and the snow was blinding me and stinging my eyes.  We left the solid sand and hit the choppy snow which gave me a chance to catch up.  But it was short lived and by the road section they put distance on me again.

Once we passed the Black Point parking lot and entered the trails I was in no man's land.  I couldn't catch up with the group and was worried about someone gaining on me.  My Speedcross handled the snow well - there was little ice to speak of and traction wasn't an issue this time.  The group ahead began to splinter as we approached the old ruins but I still wasn't gaining.

I made a little headway on folks during the last beach section but their lead was too great and I wasn't able to do anything.  I finished 16th.  Not a particularly great race time or place wise but I haven't been doing anything towards speed so I'm not surprised at the results.  By now the snow was really coming down and all the guys had fine ice beards.  I used my cooldown as an opportunity to take a couple GoPro shots and then return to the finish to snack and get crumbs stuck in my beard.

Here's a couple of the videos I shot:

The Rhode Runners once again came correct and narrowly beat the WTAC men.  The WTAC fared better however.  It should be a good competition this year!  By now the snow was piling up and staying warm was difficult.  The roads were already crappy by the time I headed home and I was happy to get home to the family and batten down for the storm.  Looking forward to the next race at Old Mountain Field.

Time to go home to the fire
Photo by Scott Mason

Thursday, January 5, 2017

Weekly Log: 1.2.17 - 1.8.17

In honor of the new year let's see if I can make the weekly blog habit stick. This weekend marks the beginning of the 4th Season winter trail series put on by Mike Galoob.  Some reshuffling meant that the Old Mountain 5k would be in February rather than December.  So the Resolution 5k starts it off this weekend.  I usually have a pretty good race here and there may actually be some snow on the ground.  Not sure what kind of speed I have but I'm looking forward to it.

Monday - Richmond, RI - 11.1 miles

5 minutes of planks (longest - 2:20)

Last of day of my Christmas break before I drag myself back up to East Providence.  Made the most of it with a medium length trail run at the Carolina Management Area.  As often happens I wasn't sure of my route until I approved my destination then a loop popped into my head.  I parked along Pine Hill Rd and ran into southern Carolina where I've never been.  Once it intersected with the North/South trail I headed north back towards the road.  I came upon a group of 7-8 middle aged asians. They were decked in orange and thought they were just hiking until I spied rifles on all their shoulders.  Definitely not the kind of hunters you expect but they seemed nice enough.

A brief road section took my over to Shadow Ridge Rd and through the backdoor into Carolina North.  It began to hail a bit but it was the tiniest hail possible.  I ran a couple hilly loops around the trout pond and then headed back towards the car.  A good mid-distance trail run to start the week.

Oh and my wonderful wife got me a GoPro camera for Christmas.  I need a lot of practice with it.  I suspect I'll use it more for hiking than running but it'll be cool to get some action shots of other folks.  Here's a cute little campsite along the Pawcatuck that I found during today's run:

Tuesday - 0 miles

3.5 minutes of planks (longest - 1:35)

Back at work.  Blah.  No running today as it my wont on Tuesdays.  Also it was pouring outside.  I did go to lunch yoga however.  Not my best session but I got it done.  Planks this morning were very tough and I didn't get far.

Wednesday - East Providence, RI - 7 miles

5 minutes of planks (longest - 2:20)
205 push-ups (standard/wide) 30/35/35/35/40/30

My lunch run possibilities all sounded dreary but I eventually opted to head over to Riverside and run some quieter roads. It was chilly in the low 40s at first without hat and gloves but soon enough I was perfect. I headed over to some old sand pits near Barrington.  Found some abandoned house atop the pit that had been well and truly trashed.  No doubt a party zone for seedy folk.  Heading back towards the car, I had some extra miles to do so I just jumped on the East Bay bike path for a bit.  Not a bad run overall and I had more pep than I thought.  But Riverside stank of sewage from the treatment plant nearby.  Yum.

Thursday - Seekonk, MA - 6.1 miles

4 minutes of planks (longest - 1:42)

Combined bits of a couple different routes into a new loop today up in Pawtucket/Seekonk.  A nice new loop but I got really tired after three miles.  I slogged through a mile of trails and began to feel a bit peppier but cut it short anyway.  No point in pushing it.

Friday - 0 miles

5 minutes of planks (longest - 2:32)

Working from home because of the morning snow.  A short lunch run on snowy trails sounded nice but I donated blood yesterday so I'm taking it easy today in preparation for tomorrow's race.  Also I may or not have just purchased Grand Theft Auto V so that may now be vying for my time.  Mwa ha ha!

Saturday - Resolution 5k - 5.6 miles

16th overall.  Separate write up to follow.

Sunday - Charlestown, RI - 3 miles

After getting dumped on with about 12-16 inches of snow yesterday, I got out for an enjoyable snowshoe hike in Carter Preserve (the idea of running on cruddy roads held no appeal).  Really beautiful out there and a few miles of breaking trail in Carter used leg muscles that had long been dormant.

Weekly Mileage: 32.6 miles
Year to Date: 36.8 miles

A decent week of running and a fun race - a good way to start the year!