" It's at the borders of pain and suffering that the men are separated from the boys."
- Emil Zatopek

Monday, March 28, 2011

New Bedford Half Marathon

On Sunday March 20th I ran the USATFNE 1/2 Marathon Championships at the New Bedford Half Marathon. I have been battling some plantar issues in my left foot for a while now and I really didn't know how the foot would react to 13.1 miles of racing. I had taken some down time over the last week to rest up my foot and legs. So I figured I would just get after it and see what happens. The goal was to shoot for a PR (currently 1:11:15, 5:27 pace) and see what happens.

I got out pretty relaxed and settled in with the Kim Smith group. She ran here last year and was a bit under 1:11. So I figured this was a good place for me to settle in. I stayed relaxed through the first 4 miles (going 5:21, 5:22, 5:15, and 5:25) which has some rolling hills and got to the flat section that follows. At this point the splits were pretty good and I knew I was on pace for a new PR. During this flat section I began to lose Kim as she started to push the pace down, but I was actually able to catch up to Jim Johnson and Greg Hammett, two of my CMS teammates. We went through mile 5 in 5:08, well under PR pace and a bit quick! I think I hung on with them for about half a mile before they started to pull away. My pace was still good as I passed the 6th, 7th and 8th miles in 5:18, 5:21, and 5:26. At this point I ended up by myself for a bit and the wind was a little tough. Soon enough my CMS teammate Andy McCarron came by and I tucked in behind him. I was able to hang in there with Andy for a little while, we soon passed by mile 9 in 5:41, a bit off the pace I needed and soon Andy was pulling away. I was again alone and beginning to struggle. The 10 mile mark went by in 5:35 and I just kept thinking only a 5k to go, just got to hang in there! But I was really starting to hurt at this point. The legs were really starting to get heavy and my calfs were starting to cramp up. I hit the 11 mile mark with a 5:29 and started to think I could really get to the finish with PR. During the next mile CMS teammates Mike Quintal and Scott Leslie went by me like I was standing still. I went by the 12th mile with a 5:38 and knew I was really in trouble as I began the up hill last mile. At this point a guy wearing a hula skirt and no shoes went by me! I really struggled up the long hill and to the finish. My form was awful and my lower legs were cramping up pretty bad. I passed mile 13 with a 5:50 and tried to kick it in. I finished up with a last 0.1 of 39 seconds, finishing in 1:11:28 good for 33rd place.

The overall results are not awful, but this is not how I wanted to finish up a race. I thought I was having a really good race and I was on pace for a big PR till the last 5k of the race. I really think overcompensating for my left foot really caught up to me in the late miles as my lower legs really cramped up and my right hip was getting tight. The good news is that the CMS team ran great and we finished 2nd to BAA. We had 5 guys under 1:11 and most of the team scored a PR today!

5:22 (10:43)
5:15 (15:57)
5:25 (21:22)
5:08 (26:30) 5 miles
5:18 (31:48)
5:21 (37:09)
5:26 (42:35)
5:41 (48:17)
5:35 (53:52) 10 Miles
5:29 (59:21)
5:38 (64:59)
5:50 (70:49)
0:39 (71:28) 17:36 last 5k

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Training 3/21 to 3/27

3/21 Monday: OFF

Felt really awful today. My whole body is wrecked.

3/22 Tuesday: OFF

Legs are still feeling pretty bad.

3/23 Wednesday: 5 miles in 40 minutes.

Very easy running in Andover. Feeling all out of sorts.

3/24: Thursday: OFF

3/25 Friday: 5 miles in 38 minutes

Ran with Heather and Emily today. The legs are feeling much better and the foot is actually feeling pretty good too.

3/26 Saturday: 8 miles in 58 minutes

Easy running with Heather. The foot is feeling OK.

3/27 Sunday: 7 miles in 52 minutes

Easy running on the treadmill. Foot still feeling OK, but tight.

Total Miles: 25

A pretty bad week of running. The good news is that my legs and foot got a good rest. I hope this light running helps the foot towards healing up for good.

Training 3/14 to 3/20

3/14 Monday: 7 miles in 51 minutes

Easy running in Andover.

3/15 Tuesday: OFF

3/16 Wednesday: OFF

3/17 Thursday: 5.1 miles 39 minutes

Easy running from home.

3/18 Friday: 4.2 miles in 30 minutes

Easy running from Cedardale.

3/19 Saturday: 5 miles in 40 minutes

Easy running at home on the treadmill.

3/20 Sunday: 18 miles in 1 hour and 51 minutes

Ran the New Bedford Half Marathon, the USATFNE Championships in 1:11:28 good for 33rd place. Just missed my PR by 13 seconds! A short race report coming soon.

Total Miles: 39.3

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Training 3/7 to 3/13

3/7 Monday: 9 miles in 65 minutes

Easy running after work. My legs actually felt pretty good today, which surprised me considering I had run 22 miles yesterday. But I will take it!

3/8 Tuesday: AM: 10 miles in 71 minutes PM: 5 miles in 40 minutes

AM: Rattlesnake Hill loop. Felt OK, but the right hip is still bothering me from my fall on Saturday. Nothing bad, but something to keep an eye on.

PM: East treadmill running at home.

3/9 Wednesday: 10.5 miles in 70 minutes

Ran from Cedarland in Haverhill. I ran over to the Bradford Valentine 5 miles course. While on the course I did 3 x 5 minutes hard with 5 minutes rest. The first one was 5:26 pace, the second 5:26 pace, and the last at 5:09 pace. I was pretty happy with this considering the hilly nature of this course. My hip is still acting up a bit, and my calfs were barking a bit after the hard sections. Next week might be a good time to back down a bit and recover before New Bedford.

3/10 Thursday: OFF

3/11 Friday: OFF

3/12 Saturday: Hiked Mount Whiteface in NH.

Hiked with Heather and Ben. Great day to get outside!

3/13 Sunday: 16.2 miles in 1 hour 53 minutes (Garmin)

Providence Hill loop. Felt pretty good.

Total Miles: 50.7

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Training 2/28 to 3/6

2/28 Monday: 7 miles in 56 minutes

Legs felt pretty bad today. I am having trouble going down stairs and such. I don't remember a ten mile race ever beating me up this bad. Just ran real easy.

3/1 Tuesday: 10 miles in 80 minutes

Legs are still really beat up. Went a little further today, but kept it real easy.

3/2 Wednesday: AM: 4 miles in 32 minutes PM: 9 miles in 66 minutes

AM: Easy treadmill running at home. Still a bit beat up.

PM: Treadmill running at home. I actually felt a lot better this afternoon. The legs were a bit tight, but way better than yesterday, or even this morning

3/3 Thursday: AM: 10 miles in 70 minutes PM: 4 miles in 32 minutes

AM: Rattlesnake Hill loop. Felt much better today. I did a 1 minute pickups at miles 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9.

PM: Easy treadmill running at home.

3/4 Friday: 8.5 miles in 62 minutes

Easy running in Andover. Felt pretty relaxed. Legs feeling ok.

3/5 Saturday: 8.5 miles in 61 minutes

Easy running in Haverhill. I actually took a pretty bad fall a little over a mile into this run. I went pretty early and there was black ice all over the side roads. Busted up the hip and shoulder a bit, but I saved the head from any significant impact with the road. Felt OK to continue the run.

Attended the Whirlaway team party later that night, as a guest. It was great to see everyone and hear some great talks from those who spoke.

3/6 Sunday: 22 miles in 155 minutes (Garmin)

Felt pretty good today. The lower back and hip were tight to start out (from my fall yesterday) but after a few miles of easy running I was good to go! Tried to keep things very relaxed and easy and let the run come to me. I felt very comfortable for almost the whole run. I pushed the pace down a bit in the end to finish up the run at a solid pace. Check out the garmin link above for all the details.

Total Miles: 83

A good week of training! Getting excited to see how all this work pays off at New Bedford in a couple weeks!

Thursday, March 3, 2011

Jones Realtor Group 10 Miler

On Sunday February 27th I headed out to Amherst, MA for the Jones Realtor Group 10 Miler. This trip served two purposes, race a longer hard course, and eat some good college food! I wasn't sure I was going to head out to Amherst when I got up in the morning. With the snow overnight I was afraid the 2 hour drive would turn into a nightmare. After checking the weather and traffic reports I decided to go for it. At this point I was thinking that the snow would make a very tough course in Amherst even tougher. I have not raced since December and had a rough January training due to sickness so I wasn't sure how this was going to go. But with the last few weeks of training going well, I really wanted to find out what kind of shape I was in and get in a hard long effort no matter the conditions. After getting signed up I headed out for a warm up with some CMS teammates and others over the first mile and a half of the course. We also took a look at the finish area for those who had not seen it before. Soon we were back at the school getting on our racing flats on and getting ready to race!

After a few strides we were called to the starting line and very quickly we were off and running. Right away Justin Fyffe and Jesse Regnier shot to the front followed by Andy McCarron (CMS), Greg Hammett (CMS), myself and a slew of other runners. The first mile was snow and slush covered making it pretty slick and I felt like I was putting in a bit more effort than I wanted to run the pace I was going. I hit the first mile in 5:21 with Andy and Greg and at this point thought that maybe I should back off a bit. Over the next downhill mile I let Greg and Andy pull away a bit as I tried to settle into a more comfortable pace. The second mile went by in 5:10 (10:31) and I was all alone, but I could hear someone close behind and catching up to me. Not long after that Kibrom Temelso went by me. I tucked in behind him and hung on for a while as the course started to slowly head up hill. Soon we made a right hand turn and the real climbing started. We went by the three mile mark together in 5:50 (16:21) but soon Kibrom pulled away and I was back to running alone and not feeling all that good. My legs were feeling very heavy and slow as I paid for the quick downhill start. Not long after that Drew Best went by me looking strong and quickly making his way up to Kibrom. This all took place while going up a monster hill. Soon we hit the dirt road which was very snowy, icy, muddy and very slippery. Everyone I could see was swerving back and forth across the road trying to find traction. The conditions made this part of the race pretty difficult and slow. I hit the four mile mark with a 6:16 (22:37), yes, it was that slow. At this point I noticed that Drew had pulled away from Kibrom and he was coming back to me. I was starting to feeling a little bit better and really started trying to put in some effort to catch Kibrom. About half way through the 5th mile I went past Kibrom and tried to put some distance on him. He tried to hang on, but finally I got away from him and felt some space open up. I hit the 5th mile, still on the dirt road, in 5:43 (28:20). Just after this I finally got back on some pavement and was pumped to be running with out slipping and sliding all over the place. At this point I really tried to put the hammer down and put Kibrom away, I also had my eyes set on Drew in the distance. The sixth mile went by in 5:32 (33:53) and I felt like I was making up ground on Drew. So I pressed pretty hard to see if I could actually get up to him. I think it was during this mile that I first noticed him looking back 2 or 3 different times. I hit the seventh mile in 5:20 ( 39:13) and still had my eye on Drew, but I felt like I wasn't making up any ground. I also could no longer hear Kibrom behind me which had me confident that I had put a good distance on him.....but I wasn't turning around to find out! The eighth mile was reached in 5:35 (44:48) and I was starting to develop a pretty bad side stitch! Not sure the last time I had one of those and it had me worried for the final 2 miles which has some wicked uphill. At this point I decided just to make sure I held my position and finished up strong on the hills. The finish has a set of three hills, I hit the first one and just tried to stay relaxed and hit the ninth mile in 5:30 (50:18) At this point I did take a peak back and saw that Kibrom was a ways back, but I still felt he was in striking distance with the hills ahead. I really just tried to work the last two hills the best I could with out blowing up. Once I made it to the top of the hills I felt like I had my position secured. I made my way down to the school and around the parking lot to the finish with last mile in 5:54 (56:12) good for 6th place overall.

Race winner Justin Fyffe

After the race I went out for a cool down with my CMS teammates and some others. The consensus among everyone was that the course was at least a minute if not a minute and a half slower due to the conditions today. Looking over results from last year to this year it looks like that was the case. Some even ran more than two minutes slower. So overall I am pretty happy with the result as I was 31 seconds slower than last year. I felt like I put in a solid effort and got pretty good results for this time of year and considering my health issues in January.

5:10 (10:31)
5:50 (16:21)
6:16 (22:37)
5:43 (28:20)
5:32 (33:53)
5:20 (39:13)
5:35 (44:48)
5:30 (50:18)
5:54 (56:12) (27:52 second half)