This week was a mix – Sunday’s long run was a bit of a disaster, a planned 20 miles crapping out after 18 & dry heaving while getting bitten by fire ants on the side of the road. But Saturday’s trail race was a lot of fun, a first for me, and mostly injury free.
I’m five weeks away from my NE Double and having a bit of a crisis of confidence – if I can’t do 20 without crash & burning, how can I do back-to-back marathons? Objectively though, I know what causes these problems on long runs, and I know I can avoid them in race situations. 1) Good fueling the night before. 2) Solid pre-run hydration. 3) NOT RUNNING OUT OF WATER MID-RUN. 4) Proper thermo-regulation (ie, not starting the damn thing at 2pm on a warm August day). Adjusting these four factors should get me through race #1 at a moderate pace. Race #2… that’s another thing altogether.
Hopefully the end of September will be cool (or even cold!) up in NH & Maine.
Song of the week, Gold on the Ceiling by the Black Keys.
For the mildly interested, another for the race schedule. I’m officially registered for the Austin Marathon on February 17th, 2013. YJP is going to run the half there as well, and a surprising number of her friends are coming on board too, one by one. Pack attack!
So that’s three marathons already in the queue for next year – in late April I’ll be down in Nashville at the Country Music Marathon, and in May I’ll be running in the New Jersey Marathon (since YJP made such a big hairy deal about it being “driveable” from Massachusetts). Yikes, it looks like those two are in consecutive weekends, some 900 miles apart. Maybe I’ll take the whole week off and hitchhike from Tennessee out to the Jersey shore.
It’s almost the end of August and I’m realizing that specific resolution #3 (a race every month) is at risk. So poking around the internets I’ve come up with a solution, the Greenbelts Beverly Commons Trail Run this Saturday. This race starts in Bev Farms, a community close to my own heart as it’s where I slept on my kind sister’s couch without dollar one to my name when I first moved to Massachusetts some 11+ years ago. Long before I had any thoughts of road racing I spent that summer running back and forth along Route 127 from Bev Farms east to Manchester by the Sea, and west back to Beverly proper. Rinse, repeat. Mostly happy memories from a simpler time. I’m more than happy to be returning there for 7.3 miles this weekend.
You may have noticed some goings on over on the photoblog, an instantaneous shift of focus from the random day-to-day to a single small young one. The short of it is my nephew count has clicked up a notch from two to three, bringing gender balance to my extended family’s offspring and obviating the need for me to have a boy of my own to even the scales. The newest North Ender, Tate Marcus, was born Saturday morning, is doing well, growing braver if not bigger already and experiencing a dizzying array of firsts (sky! carseats! cousins!) in his first week on earth. As of this writing his tag only has eight hits, but honestly it’s the only contender on the whole site with the growth potential to surpass the current numbers 1 & 2 (Eben with 918 hits, Steven with 444). Poor little Isaac (with 293) could very well be lapped within the month. The Ipswich girls, of course, are at a fundamental disadvantage given the late adoption of smartphone technology up in the frigid northland.
When Eben was born, I expressed some ill-defined aspirations towards introducing mild corruption into the system*. What I honestly failed to anticipate at that point was the sheer destructive force of nature bound within small nephews, somehow inherent to their fundamental being. So for new nephew #3, I’ll instead hope to find myself more often than not to be on the side of the enemies of entropy, demonstrating creation rather than destruction. I now know how this game is played – I’ll build the block towers up, you can knock them down forever.
Anyway. Welcome, new child. The brotherly footsteps you’ll follow in are small but boundlessly energetic, I hope you can keep up.
*Note this may or may not come to fruition yet. Give me another 15 years.
I was having some motivational problem with my long run today (had to do it, put it off yesterday d/t exigent circumstances). My Baltimoron accountabilibuddy texted that she was going to run, and that I should too. The photo she texted mimicking my inability to get my second shoe on pushed me out the door. Daily Mile is great for virtual encouragement but in real life interactions are stronger. Thanks for that.
I’ve got 40+ miles for the second week in a row despite missing my normally longer Wednesday run. So good news there. 12 of 18 through the training cycle for the New England Double, 2/3rds done. Next week will be another shot at 20 miles, hopefully this cool weather holds. I may just do the Allston -> Burlington route as there are fewer opt-out options with that decision.
Song of the week, the White Stripes, Seven Nation Army. Instead of the standard version here’s the new-ish GI Joe trailer (movie: probably horrible, me: gonna see it anyway) with The Glitch Mob remix playing in the background.
I didn’t have much to say about this a year ago, and don’t have much to say today. August 16 2011 broke my heart, but healing comes with time. Looking at these photos from her last few days reopens those wounds but I think it’s ok to let ourselves feel that way today. I have plenty of happier memories to counter-balance this sadness, I keep them all here.
I’ve not mentioned it here but the (only!) active topic of conversation of conversation amongst my people these days has been about the new nephew on the way. If you’re curious, the status of that situation is being updated in real-time here.
So while we’re waiting, my previously instances of becoming an uncle.
The good news: Back above 40 for the first time in a month The bad: Cut my 20 miler short on Saturday d/t heat. Best run of the week: 8.2 mile river run last Tuesday at 7:35 pace (just above my half marathon goal pace). Worst: 3.3 Sunday in Burlington, dropping water like it’s nobody’s business. Newest new news: Registered this week for the Chicago Half, less than a month from now.
11 of 18 weeks done for the New Hampshire / Maine double cycle. I need to get serious about running two morning longs next weekend. I talked to someone who is running a 50 in Vermont that same weekend – she’s peaking at 75 miles beforehand. I have to do better than 42.
As I was doing some party planning today I noticed a gap in my photo archive from the middle part of last September. I’ve added a few party pics to rectify that problem. Hondo’s got some good ones from that day too.
I’ve been poor with posting updates, which bothers me for purposes of the augmentation of my own memory more than any supposed readership to this website. For tonight though, suffice to say my miles and effort have been off a bit the last three weeks. It’s been hot, I’ve been a little sick and generally have had a lower energy level than I would have liked. I’ve also been traveling a bit – each of my last three long runs has been away from Massachusetts, first 15 miles in Rhode Island, then 13.4 in Connecticut last weekend, then 14.3 yesterday in Maine. These runs aren’t exactly nothing, but they’re not of the quality or effort I would like them to be either. I’ve also be going through a lot of water – I was absolutely drenched after the last two of these, my shoes squishing along. Next week I’ll have my first 20 miler for the current training cycle, a pretty decent bump up.
Today though, today I finished up the week with a good run with N&L through the trails around our campground in Freeport, ME. Only four miles, but still one of the better efforts I’ve made lately. Today ends week 10 of 18 for my New England Double training cycle (New Hampshire/Maine Marathons). Two months to go.
Song of the week, Have You Ever from Brandi Carlile.