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.
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...