Saturday, June 24, 2017

More Reservations

Took a day off from work on Thursday to get my gear together for the weekend race but also to sneak out and bag some reservations:

Cormier woods
Quinebaug woods
Peaked Mountain
Miller tract forest (Peaked Mtn)
Rock House
Lucy Stone birthplace
Lucy Stone home

Rock House

Miller tract

Peaked Mountain

old foundation at Quinebaug woods

Mine shaft at Tantiusques

Ruins at Cormier

Friday, June 23, 2017


I'm working on running at (or sometimes hiking) all of the Trustees of Reservations locations.  Last week I went to a few, here are some pics.

Chestnut hill farm

Wednesday, June 21, 2017

New England 5 mile championships

USATF NE 5m championships (Ribfest) – One of my goals this year is to complete the USATF NE Grand Prix, a series of 7 races of varying distance.  Each of the races is the New England road running championship at whatever distance.  Last year I earned my “Iron-Runner” jacket by completing the series and I did okay in the 50-54 age group along the way.  This was the one race I was NOT looking forward to.  Unfortunately it was the day after Mt Washington and my days of being able to recover and race on back-to-back days are well behind me.  My hope was to minimize the damage and get through the 5 mile without making any of my nagging ailments any worse.  I also wanted to help my team CMS as we are doing very well in the GP so far this year.
Dan picked me up and we made good time getting to the race well ahead of our planned arrival.  We decided the walk to number pick-up would be a good way to loosen up.  The advertised ¼ mile turned out to be .6 but we had enough time to mosey over and back.  I’d never seen a round race bib number before.  We both gave away our beer tickets and I got rid of my t-shirt as well.  No need collecting stuff that’ll just collect dust.
We warmed-up on the course which is among the ugliest courses this side of the Rhody 5k.  Basically it is an out & back on a divided highway.  No shade, no escape from wind, one water-stop (theoretically two but they are never set up for the people coming back) and a long uphill from 3-4 miles.  Not a tough course by any stretch but not easy either.  I felt tired and a little dizzy (remnants of the migraine) as we got 25 minutes of running in.  After a quick change into racing flats we jogged the .6 over to the start line.  I was already soaked from the 100% humidity and maybe 80 degree temps.
I looked around for the pace signs and plunked myself right behind the 6:00 – 7:00 pace one.  I would be disappointed with 7’s, felt that 6:30’s would be do-able and if I had a very good day I might get as fast as 6:00’s.  I had a look around while waiting for the start and I seemed to be about in the right spot.  Dan and many of the CMS guys were just a row or two ahead.  No need to sprint out anyone especially with the 180 degree turn 100 meters in and a 100 meter climb after that.  It took me about 8 seconds to cross the line and the first 50 meters were slow jogging as things thinned out a bit.  Once I got to the top of the hill things opened up a bit and I slowly accelerated.  It was kind of “fun” passing a lot of people.  I kept my head up and focused ahead, every time I recognized someone up ahead I worked to catch and pass them.  I hit the half-mile in 3:08 (so 3:00 after passing the line) right on 6’s.  Dan was just a bit ahead and I aimed for him.  We reached the mile together in 6:00 and then he pulled ahead a bit as we got rolling a little faster.  We were still constantly passing people which made it seem like we were going faster than the splits would indicate.  Dan was just a bit ahead at 2 miles and I reeled him in by the time we got into the neighborhood for the only part off the highway.  I got by him and then focused on Kristin Doneski (my marathon rival a couple of years ago J ).  After Kristin I hit the 5k mark in 18:30, so a little under 6’s but the next mile climbed 50’ and it was pretty warm (and even a bit of a headwind stirred up now).  I had stopped passing people but a big group about 10-15 seconds ahead was coming back to me.  I could see fellow 50+ runner Brian Ruhm and 60+ ace John Barbour and set my sites on them.  I got up to Brian a little past the 4m mark and we had a great back-forth battle.  As we slowly closed on John Barbour I gapped Brian on the final downhill but he flew around me on the final straight and put a couple of seconds on me before the line.
I was spent when I hit the line and needed a moment on my hands and knees to regroup.  I’d run 30:11 gun time and my chip time (from start line to finish line) was 30:03.  I couldn’t have been more pleased, especially after racing the day before.  I’m not sure I could have done much better had I not raced the day before.  I was surprised to find that I’d gotten 6th in the 50-54 (although Ruhm actually beat me, he was behind me based on chip time which is just stupid).  Our 50+ team kept the streak going with another Grand Prix victory!  Ed Sheldon bounced back from a tough run at Mt Washington to take the 50+ title.  We put four in the top 9 with Dan finishing ninth 30 seconds after me.
We went out for another couple of miles and thoroughly soaked called it a day.  We’ll now have a long wait until the next Grand Prix race (5k in September).
1          28:10    Ed Sheldon        52         CMS
2          29:01    David Principe    50         CMS
3          29:02    Scott Anderson   52         WRT
4          29:11    Charlie Bemis     54         WRT
5          29:34    Rob Edson         53         WRT
6          30:03    Dave Dunham    53         CMS
7          30:05    Brian Ruhm        52         GCS
8          30:33    Paul Davies        50         BAA
9          30:36    Dan Verrington   54         CMS
10         30:39    Terrance McNatt 52         CSU      
50+ teams
1 CMS 2:31:12 (Sheldon, Principe, Dunham, Verrington, Lindsay)
2 WRT 2:33:26 (Anderson, Bemis, Edson, Hammond, Warren)
3 GLRR 2:38:53 (Barbour, Reeder, Hrynowski, Lagoy, Dixon)

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Mt Wshington road race

Mt Washington Road race
I just was not feeling “it” before Mt Washington this year.  This was my 27th time running the race and a rare time that I was not all that excited about it.  My major focus the last 6 months had been the USA Mountain running championships which was held at Cranmore on June 3rd.  I was pretty beat up after Cranmore and was in a bit of a post-big-race blahs.  Added to that I was hit with a really bad migraine on Monday which left me short on miles and feeling like ass all week.  I guess the flip side to all of this was I felt no pressure (basically I’ve felt no pressure since a sub-1:10 is out of reach).  My goal was to give a good effort and support my team.  CMS has a long history at Mt Washington and I want to see that history continue.
Petey and I met up for the ride on Friday morning (Petey was doing his 30th consecutive Mt W) and we met up with Kevin Tilton for a very enjoyable run on Old Town Hall road.  It was a pretty relaxing afternoon hanging out at the hotel, getting our numbers, meeting up with Ed Sheldon, his wife, and Francis Burdett for dinner at the Spaghetti Shed.  Race morning dawned humid and cloudy but that’d probably burn off before we got going.  The drive should have taken us 20 minutes but the last 1 mile to the auto road took 40 minutes!  We had left ample time so it was not an issue.
I met up with a bunch of CMS guys and we headed out for 2.5 miles on the dirt Great Glen trails.  It was very humid and warming up.  The clouds burned off during the run and the summit came into view.  Finally, I was getting “race nervous”.  A quick change into race flats and a dunk in the Peabody River to cool a bit.  I was already thirsty and took advantage as multi-time winner Joe Gray tossed his water bottle to the side of the road, I swiped it and took a drink.  NOW I was ready to race!
I got a clean start from the second row and settled in as we made our way to the base of the mountain.  I counted 37 people ahead of me as we started to climb.  Right away another 10 or so runners went past.  Bad move increasing tempo as you hit the climb, I’d see them all later.  I tried to find the right pace and dodge around people who were not cutting tangents.  Why would anyone run even one foot more than they have to?  I hit the mile in 7:21 which was the same as last year, that made me feel a lot better.  I was doing what I do which is to run my own race but also be aware of what others are doing.  Basically after the mile people start to realize how tough this is going to be and the slow-down begins.  I started catching people by being steady.  I kept thinking “relax it is early” and “get to half-way and it’ll cool”.  It was humid and I was already drenched.  Jim Johnson bailed at 2 miles with a back ailment and suddenly I’d gone from 6th man on CMS to catching Todd Callaghan for the top spot on the team.  It was good running with Todd as neither of us slacked or the other moved ahead.  We rolled on together from 2 miles to somewhere beyond four.  All of the passing was done by then.  It never cooled off above tree-line and it seemed unusually warm with the clouds burned off and no wind at all.  Not your typical day on the slopes of Mt Washington.
I didn’t really track my splits as I went I just savored every beep of my GPS chiming that I’d completed another ½ mile.  I definitely felt my lack of long runs (I rarely, if ever, go beyond 8 miles in a single run) after 6 miles I started to run out of steam.  The tough switch-back climb had me gasping and dizzy.  I looked back for the first time to see if any of the 50+ guys were closing on me.  I didn’t see anyone but didn’t take solace in that.  A mile to go meant a tough 10 minutes of running.  I could see the summit building and felt that I was pushing pretty hard but I was definitely spent.  I somehow managed to maintain my place and crossed the line in 14th in 1:13:21.  I was not happy with the time (thought I had a 1:12 in the cards based on the my half-way split) but pleasantly surprised with the place which is my best in the last 10 years.  Maybe the higher entry fee is keeping away some of the better runners?
I was happy to see that the CMS men’s teams took first in the Open, 40+, and 50+ and I was the top guy on each team.  I don’t think that has ever happened before.  A win is a win but our open team time was the slowest winning time since 1974.  Simon G won the 50+ for the second straight year and I took second, we were the top 2 runners over the age of 38.
Top 20
1          58:57    Joseph Gray       M3034   Colorado Spring, CO        MERRELL
2          1:00:44 Sage Canaday    M3034   Boulder, CO                    HOKA ONE ONE
3          1:01:35 Eric Blake           M3539   West Hartford, CT          
4          1:07:02 Francis Wangari  M2529   Kanjuku Kenya               RUN2GETHER
5          1:07:16 Noah Hoffman    M2529   Park City, UT     
6          1:08:35 Drew Best          M3539   Amherst, MA                   ACIDOTIC
7          1:08:47 Brandon NewbouldM3539 Nottingham, NH              WHIRLAWAY
8          1:09:18 Nick Aguila         M2529   Manchester, NH              MILLENNIUM
9          1:09:37 Nacho Hernando M2024   Bay Shore, NY                MILLENNIUM
10         1:10:13 Simon Gutierrez  M5054   Alamosa, CO                  TEAM COLORADO
11         1:10:59 Sam Gray           M2024   Exeter, NH                     WHIRLAWAY
12        1:11:21Shannon PayneF3034   Franktown, CO              TEAM COLORADO
13         1:11:50 Gregory Krathwohl M2529Ipswich, MA       
14        1:13:21Dave Dunham   M5054 Ward Hill, MA               CMS
15         1:13:31 Matt Lipsey        M2529   Waterford, PA                 TEAM RUN SCRANTON
16         1:13:41 Patrick Caron      M2024   Needham, MA                 JANJI
17         1:14:04 Bryce Murdick     M2024   Falmouth, ME    
18         1:14:29 Todd Callaghan  M4549   Beverly, MA                    CMS
19         1:14:30 Mark Larosa       M3539   North Andover, MA          BAA
20         1:14:49 Daniel Princic     M3539   Reading, MA                   WHIRLAWAY

Monday, June 19, 2017

Week Ending 06/18/17

Got it done this week, still dealing with Posterior Tibial Tendonitis that I haven't been able to shake (downhill running is not good for me).  Bad migraine on Monday messed up my entire week. Was not fired up for the big 2-race-weekend but got through it better than I'd hoped.  Two more weeks and then I have a break in racing, for how long?  Not sure...

Week = 80
Month = 200
Year = 933
Life = 135,918

M - 445am Weir 5m in 42:54
        11am bad migraine went home and slept for 17 hours

T - 445am Weir 8m in 67:22
      245pm Weir & Stevens 8m in 67:24

W - 445am Weir 5 in 42:32
       245pm Weir & Stevens 8 in 62:15

Th - 445am Weir 5 in 43:19
        245pm Weir & Stevens 8 in 66:36

F - 6am Stevens & Weir 5 in 42:33
      Noon 5m with KT in INtervale 43:04

Sat - 2.5 warm-up, then 7.5 race up Mt Washington
        5pm Stevens mile
         520pm Weir 2m

Sun - USATF NE 5m championships in Merrimack 2.5 wup, .5 to line, 5 race, 2 warm-down

Me (27th time up Mt Washington) and Doug D (1st time!) post race

Sunday, June 18, 2017

CMS history at the Grand Prix 5m

CMS history at the USATF NE 5m championships

This year will mark the 30th time the 5 mile or 8 kilometer was part of the Grand Prix.  The split has been even with the 8k conducted 15 times and this year will be the 15th 5 mile.  The 5m has been a staple of the series being included every year from 1987-present with the lone exception being 2010 when the selection criteria were changed and the distance was not selected.  Oddly the 5m/8km has twice been contested over short courses.  The Ollie (2009) and Dubliner (1991) both came up short of the stated distance (and as such I did not use the times from those years for “best” lists).  I believe that only the Carver Cranberry (Carver, MA), Ribfest (Merrimack, NH), and Bobby Doyle (Narragansett, RI) races still survive. The races which were the championships the most time include Rojacks which hosted the championship