Thursday, May 6, 2021

Looking back - May 1996

25 Years ago: I had a pretty busy month with a couple of road races and some mountain racing.  I started the month (05/05/96) in Worcester at the CMHC 10 mile.  It was a bit warm (65) and windy (10-20 mph) for the field of about 500.  Scott Bagley took it out hard in the first mile and was uncatchable, winning in 50:29.  I took second ($1,500) in 50:39 with Eric Morse third in 50:49. 

The next week I was off to the very first USATF NE mountain series race (05/11/96) at Kearsarge Mountain (Warner, NH).  Dan Verrington and I ran together through the tough first 5 miles in drizzle and fog and then I broke away on the mountain proper to take the win and set the course record in 51:23. Dan took second in 52:26.  Next up (05/19/96) was the USATF NE 8km championships at Agawam (MA).  I felt lousy in part due to the 85 degrees and humid conditions.  I hung around with the lead pack through 2 miles but couldn’t hang on as Bagley took the win in 24:12, I placed 4th in 24:23.  I doubled up on the next weekend picking up $300 for second place at the Saucony Peabody 4.5 mile on Friday night (22:31) and then setting a course record (24:31) at Wachusett mountain the following morning (05/25/96).


Wednesday, May 5, 2021

Looking back - May 1991

 30 years ago: I made the most of racing in May of 1991 with only four races, but I covered 45 miles and got two wins in those races.  My first race of the month (05/05/91) was the NEAC (now USATF NE) 10 mile championship in Worcester.  Scott Bagley seemed to have the race in hand at 8 miles, at just after 9 Dennis Simoniatis and I went by and then I took Dennis in a sprint with both of us timed at 49:36.  It was one of those rare days when everything seems to come together.

A week later (05/12/91) on a hot and humid day I won the Lawrence Eagle Tribune 10 mile in 54:28. Teammate Dave LaPierre was second in 57+.  The next weekend (05/19/91) I hit the trails taking on the Soapstone Mountain.  I took the lead at the start and promptly led the top 25 people off course at the top of the mountain.  We had to plow through the rest of the field on the descent and I finally got back into the lead after a few miles.  I ended up losing the race by a couple of ticks over Brit Andy Moffat.

I finished off the month (05/26/91) with a trip out to the US 20km championships in Wheeling WV.  It was a brutal day with temps in the 80’s and 90% humidity.  Times were slow (winning time was 1:03:07).  I ended up finishing 3rd U.S. with a 1:05:31 (8th place overall) this is my best finish in a Non-Ultra U.S. championship.

Tuesday, May 4, 2021

Looking back - May 1981

 40 years ago: I was busy back in May of 1981, racing seven times over the course of the month.  I kicked off the month (05/03/81) with a rare road race.  I’m not sure why I chose to do this especially with it being the day before a dual meet against Methuen.  I ran 24:38 to take second place at the Dunster Street race in Cambridge.  The next day I won the 2 mile in the dual meet (10:04) and ran the 4x400 relay (55.6).  The next weekend (05/09/81) I traveled to White Plains NY for the Loucks Games where I took third in the 3200m (metric 2m) in 9:24.8.  The pace in the raced was very unusual (for me) with a big negative split (2nd mile faster than the first) running 4:48 and finishing in 4:36.  A week later (05/16/81) I was victorious at the Northern Area Championships running a 9:26.9, with nearly opposite splits of the week before (4:38/4:48).  I got sick in the closing weeks of the month and ran a disappointing 9:45 at the Sate Class meet (fourth place) and a 4:31 (2nd place) at the MVC league meet to close out my High School junior year of track.


Lowell Sun all-stars Spring 1981

Monday, May 3, 2021

Cinco De Miles

I’ve finally started to feel good enough to consider racing after getting injured back in February.  Although I’m still not 100% (glute is still bothering me) the oblique issue seems to be resolved.  I’d done a few workouts over the last 3 weeks and a couple of long runs as well.  Neither seemed to set me back so I decided to give the Cinco De Miles 5k a shot.  I’d done this Millennium managed race back in 2019 and recalled that the course was reasonably flat…for Bedford NH.  I headed up the day before to check out the slightly altered course which actually took out a little of the downhill at the start.  I also used this as an opportunity to break out my brand new Skecher racing flats.  They felt comfortable and light.

On race morning I went out early (5:30am) and did 3 miles to try to loosen up.  The logic I was using was that my second run of the day was always faster if I’d done a morning run.  Must be something to do with getting older and slowing down and needing more time to get loose.  I met up with teammate Jim Pawlicki and we headed out for a warm-up/course preview.  Not many out on the course as the 1,500 runners would be spread out with start times from 9am to 11:30am.  As has been the case for the last year all racing has been a time trial format.  At most Millennium races two runners would start every 10 seconds.  That kept things pretty spread out but also was close enough that (generally) you could see a few people ahead and maybe even catch some.  All starts were based on the time you told them you thought you could run.  I entered myself at 18:40 which is exactly 6:00 pace.  I’d run an 11:42 two-mile in a workout a few weeks back so I was hoping I’d actually be able to break 6’s but knew I’d be rusty after this much time away from the racing scene (11 weeks).  Jim and I got in a nice warm-up then I put on my race gear and did another mile to stay loose.

I was seeded 18th, so my start was only 1:20 after the first starter.  That helps keep the nervousness down and 5k’s make me very nervous.  They are so short, like a sprint!  I went out controlled and was surprised that the guy who started with me was gone in the first 50 meters of the race (he definitely did not seed himself correctly as he ran over 36 minutes!).  I concentrated on the guys in front of me and not working too hard in the opening ½ mile.  I hit the mile in 5:53 and was feeling pretty good.  I slowly reeled in one of the guys in front of me and got him a little after 1.5 miles.  My second mile was a 6:04 so I was still thinking I could sneak under 6’s with a good finish.  I forgot how the “little” 30’ rise from 2.4 to 2.6 really hurt.  I was still thinking that I’d get some momentum on the downhill and kick the final quarter-mile.  I kind of ran out of steam and just managed to get in under 6’s with an 18:36.0.  Most seemed to think the course was a bit long with Garmin giving them 3.13 to 3.15.  I got 3.12 which is close enough.  I ended up finishing 15th and took first in the 55 (and first over 50).  Jim met his goal as well coming in under 21 minutes (20:50).  We headed back out for one more loop of the course as a warm-down and were out of Bedford before the 9th wave had even started.

Not a bad day, next up the Manchester 10 mile on May 8.

Sunday, May 2, 2021

Week Ending 05/02/21

 Not a bad week, got back to racing after nearly 2 months away due to the oblique/glute injury.  I was also able to get in a decent tempo run with Doug.

Week - 81
Month - 25
Year - 1,1314
Life - 151,261

M - 440am Methuen rail trail 5m in 913s
       1130am Industrial park 5m in 727s

T - 440am Depot to stateline x 2 5m in 836s
      1030am Bedford rail trail from Fawn lake 6m in 712s

W - 440am Methuen rail trail 5m in 835s
       1130am H2H2H segment tempo run 7m in 714s

Th - 440am Methuen rail trail 5m in 845s
       1130am Goaty garage run 5m in 918s
       1pm Londonderry rail trail ob/ 3m in 754s

F - 440am Bradford rail trail 5m in 831s
      1030am Industrial park 5m in 712s

Sat - 7am Freeman rail trail 8m with D-la and Petey (bike) in 835s
       Noon - 3.1 course preview at Cinco in 725s
       12:30 another 1 mile in flats in 704

Sun - 530am Montessori school out/back 3m in 842s
         810am course warm-up with Jim P
         840am another mile in flats
         90120 am Cinco De Miles 5k in 18:36
        945am 3 warmdown with Jim P

Saturday, May 1, 2021

All the months

 This month brought me over the 150,000 mark. Here is what the "month" spreadsheet looks like:

Friday, April 30, 2021


 Not a bad month, slowly making gains...





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