Monday, April 30, 2012

Training 04-30 - 05-06

Weekly Wrap Up:  78.1 miles for the week with a short 3 day on Friday.  Calf problems and back problems plagued me but I was still able to get an ok starter race in (5k) on Saturday and a fun redlining session in on Sunday w/ Kevin and Sam.  A few days of doubles was kind of weird but as the weather gets better I hope to try to do that more often to pad my mileage up a bit.  For now, I'm just focused more on getting back healthy rather than numbers but this week was still the highest week I've had in a while (actually since the week I ran Pisgah in September, which was the beginning of my problems).

5-06 - Sunday: 12.5 miles (trails/roads).  Redlining in the Sandwich Range w/ Kevin Tilton, Sam Wood, and Tucker Wood.  From Whiteface Intervale Rd. in Sandwich up the Flat Mountain Pond Trail to the Shelter and then down to Bennett ST. Trail and out to Bennett St. back to the trailhead.  Nice loop with most of the run being in Waterville Valley, which is proving to be one of my favorite places to run trails. [2:05:18].

5-05 - Saturday: 10.2 miles (roads).  Woke up with my back completely hosed.  If Darin Brown wasn't coming to pick me up to race down in Dover, I would probably not have driven down myself.  I could barely walk down the stairs.  Stretched as best I could on the ground and tried to loosen up both sides of my back.  Was stiff and sore all the way down to the race.  It kept my mind off my calf problem however.  Just about a 4 mile w/up over the entire course in Dover, NH (some w/ Darin, some with Sam Wood and Abby).  Then strides.  Back was so stiff I was running upright and had near zero range of motion to either side (i.e. turning my head slightly, etc.). Race: 5K - Children's Museum 5k (results) - 3rd OA - 16:13.  Had to do this because it's part of the Seacoast Series again and I wanted to compete in the series this year.  I won this race last year and have the current CR of 15:46.  It is a SLOW course.  The good news is that since this race started in Dover in 2009, I have run 16:13 (in 2009), 15:53 (in 2010), and 15:46 (in 2011).  The course was slightly modified in 2010 but for the most part it's the same.  It is not very fast and the effort I ran last year was one of my better races, as I was behind and racing Nick Crowell near the end.  To be this banged up w/ my back and calf, and run the same time I did in 2009, I'll take it.  I think on a Redhook type of course, this would be a 16:00 or around there.

Brandon Newbould and the second place runner from OH (although after the race he was telling me he's from Seattle) went out pretty fast (or so I thought) and I just hung on in 3rd for just about the entire race.  I lost touch w/ them just after the mile, but wasn't too far back around 1.5.  My back was tightening up pretty bad and it was tightening up my hips and I could feel pain in my hips and down into both butt cheeks. It was bad but wasn't so bad as to make me stop (which was my biggest fear).  The good news is that my calf was a non issue (even though I can't even touch it without wincing in pain).

The entire first 1 mile is almost all uphill.  It flattens out a little, then goes down slightly, then back up slightly as it circles around a nice neighborhood and then back out.  Then it is a lot of downhill to the 2 mile mark.  My first mile was a brutal 5:16 and my second was 5:15.  The last mile I clocked in at 5:08, as it is mostly flat with only one slight uphill kick in the pants at about 2.75.  I was too far behind 2nd place to go for it, although everyone on the sidelines was telling me I was in range and catching him.  Brandon at that point had opened up a lead and we all spread out a bit.  It looked closer than it turned out to be, but I wasn't completely out of touch with an OK race for being hurt.   I don't have a ton of work to do to get back fitness-wise to where I should be, but I need to figure out what is wrong with my body first...and why I am so banged up.  It felt good to get back to racing a 5k on the road and I look forward to trying to race hard at Redhook in a few weeks.

After the race, Darin and I did the course again as a cooldown and then hung around for the awards.  For my effort, I got 4 more lobsters from the Weathervane.  Darin won the masters and got some lobsters as well.  He was just using the race as a workout for his upcoming masters US championship on the track this summer.

Then it was back up to Madison.  In the afternoon, Kristin and I headed around to scope out some locations around town.  We hit the Madison Boulder for a few minutes (as she hadn't seen it) and then we headed over to Foss Mountain in Eaton for a short hike and a LONG drive (I did and end-to-end drive of Foss Mountain Road which is usually gated after the trailhead in the winter but it should be gated ALL YEAR).  The road was ridiculous.  It dumped us out (eventually) into rural Maine (Brownfield I think) and then we had to drive around, through Porter to get back into Freedom and back around to where we wanted to be.  Then we hit the Lead Mine area for a little walk and then over to Black Brook Rd. for a mountain bike trip across the SOS trails and into the Freedom Town Forest for an end-to-end ride on the abandoned air strip. Then we came back via the trails versus the air strip because it was a little slow going due to the sand and loose rock.  As the day went on, my back started to feel better but it's still a bit twinged as I write this post...

Did I ever mention I love where I live?

5-04 - Friday: 3 miles (trails/dirt roads) - solo.  Madison, NH.  With my calf all locked up and sore, I drove down to Lead Mine and parked and ran around the short trail loop around the pond and then down to Cooks pond.  Calf was really sore and I was just wanting to get out and not take a zero before trying a 5k tomorrow.  [27:01].  Later in the evening I wrenched my back fixing a lamp in my house.  Got almost zero sleep and woke up with a thrown out back.

5-03 - Thursday: 13.4 miles total.   8.8 miles (roads/dirt roads) w/ Kevin Tilton from my house in Madison. HILLY loop up Conway Rd. to Eidelweiss and up through to Town Line Rd. along the Conway/Madison town line and then up class vi section of Modock Hill rd. and out to Colby Hill/Glines Hill to Pound Rd. and back down. Bad calf pain on the downs near the end. [1:00:50]. To break 7's on this loop is impressive to say the least. Then, later:  4.6 miles on trails from Kennett H.S. track after the meet, with Kevin Tilton, Roger Marcoux, and Darin Brown. Nice easy shake out + 5x 100yd strides on the grass (barefoot) after (plus jog back). Calf sore.  Need to have it looked at again.  Got a tip from Doc Brown about a person in the valley that may be able to help...

5-02 - Wednesday: 12.4 miles total.  Two runs on a dreary day.  Wednesday's are tough because of a late meeting I have, so I had to split my runs up, but I don't think that's such a bad thing every once in a while.  Lunch: 5.4 miles (roads/dirt roads). Solo. Ridiculously hilly loop. House, up Conway Rd. to Colby Hill. Up Colby Hill (ridiculous) all the way to Modock Hill. Up Modock Hill to the Moody Hill / Glines Hill intersection and across to Pound Rd (get the picture here with just about every road having a 'Hill' in the name). Up and down Pound all the way to E. Madison Rd. Short, but solid loop. Very challenging for a short run. If I did this every day, I'd get into shape quick. Start Elev: 604 ft - Max Elev: 1102.0 ft - Gain: 584.0 ft. [35:21]. A little on the chilly side but not too bad. Very cloudy and damp out.   Later in the day: 7 miles (snowmobile trails, abandoned airstrip). Madison, Freedom, NH. Parked just off Lead Mine Rd. and ran down to the Freedom Town Forest and the airstrip, then up halfway to check out beaver dam-age from yesterday. That thing was built right back up again and the area was just as flooded as yesterday. Those little buggers work fast. Ran back all the way south down to the end of the strip and to the gate at Ossipee Lake Rd. Grabbed a trail map from the box at the gate and then turned and headed all the way back up to the end, out onto the snowmobile trails again and up to the car. Overcast but about 52 degrees so pretty pleasant run. [52:26]. Oh..and not sure I mentioned this or not but I LOVE snowmobile trails.

Abandoned airstrip...

5-01 - Tuesday: 10.9 miles (trails, dirt roads, paved roads, snowmobile trails, abandoned air strip.  Freedom, Madison, NH.  From Ossipee Lake Rd. through old air strip, then trails, dirt roads to Lead Mine...then down through the mine and out onto East Shore for a bit before coming back down through snowmobile trails behind the West Branch Pine Barrens.  Stopped for about 20 minutes and unclogged a massive beaver dam that had flooded the road/trail.  That was fun. Probably technically illegal, but fun.  The road was completely flooded over because of two different dams.  Those things are pretty smart.  [1:21:51] total running time.  Dreary and wet the whole time, but good solid run.

4-30 - Monday: 17.7 miles total .  Lunch run: 10.5 miles (road/dirt road) - solo - Silver Lake bang.  Was 30 seconds up on the FKT at the entrance to Lead Mine Rd (5+ miles in).  Wasn't even trying to run hard over the first few miles.  Felt decent considering I raced yesterday.  Calf was a bit twingy but I was rolling and took it 'easy' on the Lead Mine hills but was still 30 seconds up on the FKT when I hit E.Madison Rd. and thought for sure I'd easily get the fastest time.  ROLLED on the last 1.5 miles and finished in [1:07:08].  That is 4 seconds slower.  I was hammering on the road on the way back (like essentially all out it felt like) and I though the record was 1:07 high so I kinda coasted in, thinking I got it by more than enough.  I also started my watch at the top of my driveway as opposed to the bottom of my driveway (as I did during the FKT) so I think I ran it the fastest today by just a little bit, but I can't take it because officially I stopped the watch at 1:07:08. Didn't know I was over until I came inside and looked at the log. Last Tuesday we ran it in 1:07:04.  Will have to try again next week. After work: 5.2 miles (trails) with Kevin Tilton.  From Albany Covered Bridge in Albany, NH.  Along the Lower Nanamocomuck XC ski trails.  Nice and easy.  Shakeout on single track. Took a nice digger after Kevin cut me off.  Landed right in a nice mud patch, which brought back fond memories of yesterday.  Iced our legs in the Swift River afterwards.  I love where I live...

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Training 04-23 - 04-29

Weekly Wrap Up: 72 miles on 7 days, all 'singles', and one OK race.  As my write up below indicates, I gotta start getting serious now with some training.  I can't expect results if I don't put in the work.  My legs aren't probably going to get any better than this so I have to make due with what I have before it's too late. I was just really glad to be back on a starting line again.  (First two photos courtesy of Salmon Press Sports).

04-29 - Sunday: 20 miles (trails) - Wolfeboro, NH.  2 mile warmup on trails w/ Kevin Tilton and Justin Freeman before the Muddy Moose 14 mile trail race put on by Fergus Cullen at Kingswood Regional H.S. in Wolfeboro, NH.  Then race. ~14 MUDDY miles.  3rd OA - 1:28:18.  I think that was below the previous course record of 1:28-something from last year (Kevin's record). This year, Kevin killed it almost from the start and ran 1:25 something.  I was near Kevin and Justin for a little while at the start, got hit in the eye with a stray stick from the ridiculousness of the course (sticks and logs and mud and you name it, being flung up from the backs of shoes).  It broke my glasses right on my face and one of the lenses came flying off (before the 2 mile mark).  I took the frames off and threw them down on the trail next to a tree (I thought I'd be able to find it later).  Soon after that, Kevin and Justin were gonzo.  I could see them on the long straight sections but that was it.  I rolled along and felt bad early but then recovered a bit.  I figured I'd sit and run hard but not kill it and maybe they'd battle enough up front early and fade back.  That didn't happen for the most part.  There was a ridiculous climb that I struggled up (one of the steepest climbs in a race I've run since probably Soapstone) and a lot of sections I really just didn't run well on.  The terrain wasn't my cup of tea, but I knew what I was in for (heck, it's called 'Muddy Moose').  Once up at the 6.5 or so mile mark, there is a small loop that you can pick either clockwise or counter-clockwise.  I decided to go counter-clockwise and Kevin and Justin were coming the other way.  I may have chosen a worse direction, as the technical stuff was my down and the cleaner course was my up.  It was muddy as hell and there were ridiculously deep mud and water in that section (up to my thighs, so above Kevin's head).

On the way back out, I could still see them on the straights and thought I was actually gaining.  I was also starting to feel really good.  Then disaster.  I came down this steep section and took a right (the direction we came in on).  Apparently there was a sign there but I never saw it so I'm guessing it was placed behind a tree or something where you wouldn't see it if you were bombing down that section and you were on the other side of the trail.  There was a jeep parked there and the guy was sitting inside.  I heard him mumble something very low.  Apparently that low mumble was probably 'wrong way' but I obviously didn't hear it.  If it was me, I would have been standing outside the car and I would be pointing and waving and making sure people could hear me...especially when one of the runners starts to go the wrong way.  I would have yelled, etc.  But I got nothing but a whisper as I went by.  Then I proceeded to slog through more mud and water and rocks and tall grass, etc. The other direction had some very fast running and some road sections that I heard you could really roll on. The distances of both are about the same but the running time may not be.  It's about a mile or so total. I came back through the mile 9 aid station and Tad and Sheri Thomas indicated that I came from the wrong way. I actually stopped real quick and asked him what the deal was.  He quickly just said to keep going and that Kevin and Justin already came through.  I was pretty p*ssed at that point and ran angry the rest of the way.  I could now no longer see anyone way up ahead and knew I lost a little time but felt like a scumbag because now I technically didn't go the same way back on that section.  I figured the race was a wash and just banged back as best I could.  My legs felt pretty tight but overall I am just not really as fit as I need to be.  Surprisingly, after I dumped out of all the horrendous mud and loose logs and wood section of the first/last couple miles, I came out onto the road and looked up to see Justin Freeman right in front of me.  He had faded back a bit and Kevin had just grinded his way to a huge course record.  I remained about the same (maybe picking up a few more seconds at the end) on Justin and finished in 3rd, but still under the course record from the previous year.  My fault for sure for not reading the course map close enough before the race...but it still erks me about how that all went down.  I just hope that by the time the next person came through, there was clear and proactive communication at that corner of the course.  I did a couple miles of cooldown with Kevin and Justin after the race while looking for my glasses. Then, I ran back, got in my car, and drove to the 2 mile aid station/road crossing, got back in the woods for another 2 miles but came up empty.  $160 glasses lost.  Wrong turn.  Sub par result from a race.  Didn't feel great during the run.  Overall not a great day but the race was a cool race. I just wish I felt better during it and my training was going better but it's not.  I have to focus a bit more on the roads for runs during the week and a little less on all trail running.  Long trail runs and mountain runs are good but I have to start adding in some additional road stuff and some decent pacing to get better.  At this point, I'm able to do some mileage now with little issue...time to start putting in some quality work now.

Fergus Cullen is a class act and one of the nicest guys you'd ever meet and I've been wanting to do his race for a while, so I was really glad I went today... just not my day but certainly could have been a lot worse!  I could have been out there for 2:55! ;)

Photo below courtesy of the Family-Wolfe.

04-28 - Saturday: 8 miles (trails) - Conway, Albany, Hale's Location with Kevin Tilton.  Nice dirt road and single track.  Cold (mid 30s). Some light flakes falling throughout but partly sunny.  Very breezy.  Solid run.  Hit a large turkey with my car on the way over.  Had a dog jump out of the woods and into the open door of my car and into my backseat while I was about to leave.  Animal magnetism this morning...  [1:07:58].

04-27 - Friday: 7 miles (trails) - Tamworth, NH  w/ Kevin Tilton from Chocorua Lake Rd.  Single track and dirt roads around Chocorua Lake and through the Chocorua Conservation lands. Windy and cold but a nice easy run. [57:55].

04-26 - Thursday: 13 miles (trails) - North Conway, Hales Location, Bartlett.  From Echo Lake. First 40 minutes solo on trails around the lake and mountain bike trails around the park.  Then another 1:10:00 with KT.  Bloody Arm Trail loop past Diana's Bath. on some nice single track, snowmobile trail, and old logging roads.  1:50:01 total time.  Light drizzle.  Good run.

04-25 - Wednesday: 7.5 miles (mountain/trails) - in North Conway with Kevin Tilton.  Run up Black Cap from Hurricane Mountain Rd.  Then back down on Red Tail Trail.  Bonked HARD half way up for some reason.  Just not enough to eat during the day.  Still made it up in the second fastest time Kevin's ever done (although he's never killed it on the way up this route).  41:50 up.  29:34 down.  1:11:15 total.

04-24 - Tuesday: 10.5 miles (roads) in Madison with Kevin Tilton. The new 'Silver Lake Bang'.  From my front door, down 113, onto 41, onto East Shore, and then end to end on Lead Mine back up to East Madison Rd.  New FKT of 1:07:04.

04-23 - Monday: 6 miles (trails) at King Pine in Madison, NH w/ Kevin Tilton. Early AM run on my 35th birthday.  Raining and cold!!  Busy rest of the day and dinner down at my parents meant I didn't get out the door after this.  Good to at least get this in.  [51:14].

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Training 04-16 - 04-22

Weekly Wrap Up: 76.9 miles on 6 days (and one of those days was only a 3 mile day).  Thanks to a marathon and a 4 and a half hour mountain run, I got some serious time on my feet this week and came out at the end, with some additional fitness I think. I felt great on Saturday and Sunday.  Considering how the week started, I'm pretty psyched.  Most people would have easily called it quits for a week or two after having the type of day I had on Monday, but I need to start getting serious now. I think I'm getting over my injuries now, as I've stopped paying attention to them and they've stopped bugging me (for the most part).  I still have obscenely tight calves and I have no idea why, but I'm dealing with it.  I got a great road run in this week around my new favorite 'lake bang' and I got some great trail running in, with some redlining and peak bagging on Saturday. I am really pleased with this week and now that I got into UROC, I'll be really focusing on getting in the training and time on my feet this spring and summer. Bring it.

04-22 - Sunday: 7.3 (trails) with Kevin Tilton in the rain - Walmart trails in Conway, NH. Great single track action. Hammered the way back. VERY hilly. Legs feel pretty good. [1:04:25]

04-21 - Saturday: 21.8 miles
Owl's head peak bagging session with Kevin Tilton and Troy Shellhamer. From Lincoln Woods Visitor Center off the Kanc in Lincoln, NH. Up Lincoln Woods Trail, Franconia Brook Trail, Lincoln Brook Trail, Owl's Head Path to summit. Then back down to Lincoln Brook Trail and up clockwise and around to Franconia Brook Trail and back down to Lincoln Woods Trail again and back out. KILLED the last 7+ miles solo. Broke away and just got a good ole fashioned workout in at the end. Probably doing close to 6's for the last 7 miles out. Almost 4 and a half hours of moving. Good times.

04-20 - Friday: 5 miles
(mountain) - Albany, NH w/ Kevin Tilton - up to Hedgehog mountain and back down. Did the entire UNH loop trail. 5 miles total (but felt like 15). 54:35.

04-19 - Thursday: 12 miles Silver Lake loop (i.e. 'Madison Lake Bang') - E. Madison Rd. out to 113, down to 41, and out to East Shore Rd. Then up to Lead Mine and all the way around to E. Madison Rd. again. Great loop. Lead Mine is awesome to run on. 10.5 total for the loop + up to the Cascades (immediately after) and soaked my legs before heading back down. 12 total. [1:21:51]. The 10.5 loop was in 1:10:57. HOT out.

04-18 - Wednesday: Off.

04-17 - Tuesday: 3.1 miles (trails) - Whitaker Woods w/ Kevin Tilton, Roger, and a bunch of other Milers.  Very easy.  25 minutes or so over the 5k fun run course.  Beautiful day.  Stomach was feeling a little better and my legs were stiff but OK.

04-16 - Monday: 27.7 miles - 1.5 mile warmup total (running around at athlete's village + down to the starting line and staying loose + 26.2 mile race - Boston Marathon (2:55).  Felt ok for the first few miles and then felt horrible.  Couldn't stay hydrated at all even though I was constantly taking in water and Gatorade.  Felt bad from 6-10 and then made the conscious decision at 10 to just run easy to the finish.  Easier said than done.  Got heat stroke, stopped sweating, had a screaming headache, and completely rigged up even though I was doing high 7's for the last bunch of miles.  Finished the race because I was going to be damned if I was going to drop out AGAIN.  Not 2 years in a row... so I swallowed my pride and just finished the race and got in a long run.  Got very sick afterwards.  Felt fine for the first 5 minutes after I finished and was interviewed on Channel 9 briefly...then walked over to get my bag and began to feel like I was going to die.  Not long before I knew it, I was in the hands of a medical staff person who led me into the massage area.  My legs felt pretty good considering.  The calves were both really sore (the current story of my life).  I had some work done on them and then I started to get really sick.  Had to scramble in and out of the bathroom.  It was awful.  Eventually I collected my things, hobbled upstairs, and outside.  Once outside I began to feel like I was going to pass out.  I put my things down and laid down on the sidewalk for a while.  I got up and moved and tried to start walking to find my sister but soon found myself down on the sidewalk on the ground again and this time a bystander was there and noticed I needed help.  He led me into the hands of the medical team again who wheeled me over into the medical tent. I had to have an IV (just one bag this time). My temp was high and I was suffering from heat stroke. I had all I could do to not puke while I was in there.  It was miserable.  Eventually I hobbled my way over to meet my sister and her family.  I was completely wiped.  I didn't make it off her couch until Tuesday morning.  My stomach was as bad as suffering from food poisoning.  I also got a horrible sunburn.  All in all it sucked but I finished and got it done.  I don't think I'll ever do another HOT road marathon ever again.

Article in the Conway Daily Sun

Monday, April 9, 2012

Training 04-09 - 04-15

Weekly Wrap Up: 42.1 miles with a day off. Taper (even though I didn't go through a training cycle) for the marathon on Monday.  Once clear of the marathon, I'll start to get serious again.

04-15 - Sunday: 4 miles (roads).  Last gasp before slogging through a road marathon on Monday.  4 miles in Madison/Silver Lake from my house.  Very warm and sunny.  Felt pretty awful.  Signs of things to come. [27:45]

04-14 - Saturday: Off. (I don't even remember why)...

04-13 - Friday: 6.1 miles (trails and dirt/paved roads) from my house over Chamberlain Ledge, Modock Hill Rd. and Pound Rd. Solid run. [48:06]

04-12 - Thursday: 5 miles (trails). Conway, NH.  Run w/ KT from the back of his house in Conway.  A muddy slog in spots but better than a zero.  Good trails there for being right in back of his place. He doesn't give them enough credit and downplays them, but I thought it was decent running.  Saw a ginormous porcupine in there just chillin'.  Back is still wrenched.  Good thing I may be in taper mode....who knows. [44:49].

04-11 - Wednesday: 8 miles (trails and road).  Madison, NH.  2 x 4 mile runs in the PM.  One solo from my house to the McNair Conservation Easement and around Durgin Pond on the rolling single track out to Lead Mine Rd. and then back up to my house on the road.  Then, a couple hrs. later again (same loop) with Kevin Tilton. 1:01:36 total (29:41/31:55).  Wrenched my back right before Kevin got to my house.  Tough night sleep followed.  Barely walking around today as I type this.

04-10 - Tuesday: 8 miles (trails and fields).  Conway, NH.  From KHS track.  Just shy of 5 miles along the Conway rec. trail and around the track area during the meet (Kennett v.s. Berlin v.s. Gilford v.s. White Mountains Regional).  Then 3.2 miles w/ Kevin and Roger after they finished working the meet.  Ran around the athletic fields and then down some trails and up some logging roads near the high school.  Ran the first bit hard and then very easy w/ KT and Roger.  [1:06:44].  The Eagles dominated.

04-09 - Monday: 11 miles
(dirt roads and a little pavement). Eaton, Conway, NH.  Nice hilly backwoods run w/ Kevin along Conway Lake.  The original plan was going to be a workout of 3 min off/on for 12 miles (w/ 2m w/up) but we decided after the warmup to just keep running at a good clip, attack the hills a little (which were very long and steep in sections), and just keep up the tempo.  My calves were in bad shape and I had to stop once to stretch them out.  [1:16:06].  Good solid effort.  Great day to be out in the woods. We saw one car on the 10 miles of dirt road and 2 on the mile stretch of pavement.  I'll take it.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Training 04-02 - 04-08

Weekly Wrap Up: 66.6 miles on 6 days. One race, one workout, one day off to relax and try to heal the calves.  A positive step in the right direction for sure. Looking to keep the momentum going. 10 weeks until Washington.  I have some fitness to find and some speed and strength to work on...

04-08 - Sunday: off (officially)... although I ran around all day at my sisters house with my nephews.  I played pool, darts, hide and seek, and rode scooters for like 6 hours.

04-07 - Saturday: 17.5 miles (dirt and paved roads) - Newmarket, NH.  3 mile w/ up with Goupil and Dunham + about another .4 or so over to the start and strides.  Then race - Great Bay Half Marathon (results) - 1st OA (1:14:18).  New CR by 1 entire second.  Had to sprint my ass off over the last 200 or so meters to get it.  Course is very slow.  Hilly and constant ups and downs.  A couple of miles of dirt road as well.  The wind was pretty nasty at times, especially down by the water.  Ran with CMS teammate Tim Mallard for a few miles, then put a little cushion on him that I needed. He stayed about that far back the entire time.  I went through 10 faster than I ran DH Jones in February.  That's pretty impressive given the nature of this course.  My last few miles were brutally slow.  Happy to get the win though.  These days, when I finish a race I'm happy with it, given how my injuries have been.  Calves are extremely sore now, but it was worth it.  Getting back into a race situation is big for my mental state.  I know where I am fitness-wise.  Not great, but not horrible either.  Got some decent swag for the win and was happy to be around racing again.  Good event, good times, good folks.  1 mile cooldown back to the car and then some.

Hilly Splits: 5:38/5:37/5:33/5:42/5:41/5:40/5:33/5:42/5:37/5:55/5:36/5:53/5:39/:30

04-06 - Friday: 8 miles (trails) - Albany, NH.  Lower Nanamocomuck Ski Trails with Kevin Tilton from Covered Bridge.  4 out and back.  Stopped off at Rocky Gorge.  A tad muddy in spots and slow going through some mud, ice, and a little snow still lingering on the trails. [1:09:04]

04-05 - Thursday: 8.6 miles (mountain and trails) - Albany, NH.  Redlining w/ Kevin Tilton.  Carter Ledge Trail from White Ledge Campground road, up to Middle Sister, then back down Middle Sister Trail.  8.6 miles but took 2:03:54.  VERY slow going up and even slower coming back down.  Lots of stone stair climbing.  Icy and snowy near the top on both the climb and descent (trails just below treeline were still packed in a little).  Tracked a BIG moose on the way down (prints and piles of know...fresh in the snow).  Once the prints stopped, we stopped for a second and heard it crashing through the thick woods just off the trail to the left of us.  We looked for a bit to see if we could spot it but the woods were too thick to really see more than 10 feet or so.  Made it back down to the bottom just in time (7:40) to see where the cars were parked.  Both legs still really stiff and sore but everything else was ok.

04-04 - Wednesday: 9.2 miles (2 runs)

PM: 4 miles (roads and snowmobile trails) - E. Madison down to Silver Lake, hopping on some SOS trails for a bit and turning and heading back. Legs stiff from yesterday's workout.  Missed the 5am Walmart run today because I was so tired from the workout yesterday and got stomach issues late last night and was up later than I'd like. [27:18]
PM: 5.2 miles (trails) - E. Madison - from backdoor up to Cascades, through class vi road up to Moody Hill Rd. then up Albert Rd (class vi) to Chamberlain Ledge trails.  Across trails and down to Colby Hill Rd then down to Conway Rd. back to the house.  Taking it very easy today.  Legs are really stiff and sore from track work yesterday. [38:06].

04-03 - Tuesday: 18 miles total (3 sessions).

AM: 6 miles (w/ headlamp) on Walmart trails (Redstone) up to cell tower and down some single track and jeep roads w/ Tim Livingston, Kevin Tilton, and Sara (KHS). [1:04:14] + 4 x strides
PM: 3 miles at lunch from backdoor.  Up to Cascades and down some old logging roads to 113 and then back. [22:07].
PM: 9 miles in NoCo at KHS (track workout) w/ Kevin Tilton.  2.5 mile w/up on the rec. trail behind the high school + drills.  Then, 6 x 1 mile at 'whatever pace' with a 400m jog in between (continuous).  We figured 'half marathon effort' but ran faster.  Over the first 3 miles, Kevin led the first 2 laps and I would take the 2nd 2 laps.  For miles 4 and 5, I took the first 2 laps and Kevin cleaned up the last 2.  On my 6th, I was feeling GREAT and cardio-wise I was feeling like I was just coasting, but at 500M in, my RIGHT calf and hammy went into full on cramp mode out of absolutely nowhere.  I immediately pulled off and called it a workout without a second thought.  Once it goes full-on cramp, there's nothing you can do but stop.  Too quick of a pace (but it didn't feel it), too many miles on the day, not enough H2O in my system (or salt), and some new zero-arrow shoes on made it a perfect storm to cramp up I guess.  It was a shame too because I felt great.  KT had to clean up the last 2.5 laps on his own and finish up as I limped over to get my warmups back on.  Just a cramp...nothing more.  Feel fine as I write this. [20:28 warmup + 42:43 track work]

Miles:  5:04 / 5:10 / 5:07 / 5:09 / 5:10 (w/ 400m jog continuous rest)

04-02 - Monday: 5.3 miles (w/ headlamp) on Walmart trails (Redstone) in North Conway w/ Tim Livingston and Kevin Tilton. [1:02:01] + 6 x strides.  Meant to get out after work but had my parents come back from their winter vacation and swing by to see the new house.