Saturday, January 30, 2010

New Ultra Coming to Connecticut This Spring

The Traprock 50K will be held the weekend of April 3-4 in West Hartford. It is a 3 loop course of approximately 11 miles each through the woods of the West Hartford Reservoir. There is one big climb per loop. The rest of the course is rolling terrain with beautiful scenery. It is a combination of double-track and single-track with a portion of the race run on the historic Metacomet Trail along Connecticut's beautiful traprock ridge.

The actual date is still not set due to permitting issues and other conflicting races in the area on the 3rd. I question the wisdom of holding the race on April 4th though since it is Easter Sunday. If it’s Saturday I will be there.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Product Reviews – Drymax Running, Trail and Lite Trail Socks

Last fall I received several pairs of socks from the Drymax line thanks to the generosity of Bob at Drymax. Socks made with ‘wicking’ material rely on evaporation to remove moisture. This results in a wet sock, wet feet and ultimately blisters. Drymax socks use a unique fiber that repels water and keeps your feet dry and happy. Here my thoughts on the three types I wear most often. I’ll be posting reviews of the other models in the weeks ahead.

Drymax Running
This sock has a vented arch band that also wraps around the instep and a breathable mesh above the toes that aids in cooling and drying. This is a good choice for running in cool to warm temperatures. I recommend these socks for running on roads and bike paths but not for trails. They are white and wouldn’t stay that way for long on dusty or muddy trails. Plus, they don’t have the ‘trail specific’ features of the Drymax trail socks.

Drymax Trail
To help prevent dirt from getting inside, Drymax Trail socks do not have any vents. Dirt inside the sock can easily cause blisters or rub the skin raw. In addition, the Trail sock has a double welted leg with extra padding around the ankle. This extra padding protects the leg, seals the top of the shoe to keep out debris and helps to repel water. I wear these most often with great results. I recently completed a five hour run on snow covered trails without any issues. My feet stayed warm and blisters free.

Drymax Lite Trail
These are similar in design to the Trail sock but made with a lighter weight material. Like the Trail version it also has the arch band to help keep the sock in place when running over gnarly terrain. This is the perfect sock for warm weather running on the trails.

Happy feet = happy runner

Monday, January 25, 2010

Hills! Sort Of

Ever since I did some hills repeats during a snowshoe run two weeks ago I’ve been meaning to get back out to hit the hills again. It’s the weakest area of my running right now and has been for the past two years. I just haven’t put any effort into improving it either. Uphill running makes my plantar fascia pain worst so I’ve been avoiding them. Since my PF was sore anyway from Saturday’s run in the soft snow I said “WTF, might as well do hills today.”

Well, it was raining hard here making a run on the trails a soggy proposition. And I can’t run roads either. That would destroy my PF for sure. That left only one option for me, the treadmill. Or as I lovingly refer to it “The Dreadmill.” I absolutely hate running on a treadmill but figured it was better than me sleeping all day. Down to the basement I went to dust of off the cobwebs. Not really but you get the idea. It’s been a while since I’ve fired up the beast. Like two and a half years!

I don’t ever run with my iPod because I find it distracting. When it comes to dreadmill workouts I make an exception. I WANT to be distracted! After a 15 minute warm-up I boosted the incline to 3% for 5 minutes. It didn’t feel much different than running on a level surface but I thought it best to start out conservatively. After a 2 minute break on 0% I went up to a 5% grade for the next 5 minute climb. This also felt easy. So far, so good.

After another 2 minutes of flat running I started my third 5 minute ‘hill’ by jumping to 7% incline. This one felt more like I was running an actual hill. I was definitely putting in more effort and starting to break a sweat. Another 2 minute break and I was back to climbing at a 9% grade. I focused on proper form this time. Chin up, slight forward lean, arms a little lower, shorten my stride, higher knee lift and up on my toes. More like riding a bike than running.

One last 2 minute break and then I did my 5th and final 5 minute climb at 11%. This one had me breathing heavy after 2 minutes and I had to use more arm swing to keep pace. I was working hard and loving it! I don’t think doing hills this way is a substitute for getting out on the trails where you have to contend with uneven terrain, rocks, roots and the ground given way underfoot. I do like the fact that the treadmill doesn’t allow you to slow down when you get tired. It’s keep pace or you get whipped off the damn machine!

It was a hard workout but songs on my playlist like Senses Fail’s “Bite to Break Skin”, Breaking Benjamin’s “Diary of Jane” and Skid Row’s “18 and Life” kept me motoring uphill at a good pace. I was enjoying the music so much my 15 minute cool down turned into a 30 minute one. I got in a 75 minute workout with 25 minutes of hills on a rainy Monday morning. I’ll take it.

PF is very sore now. Time to hit the ice pack.

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Drudge In Da Woodz

I decided to pass on the Pooh Hill snowshoe race yesterday. The long drive to New Hampshire and two broken snowshoes made it an easy decision. My only regret was missing out on the post-race visit to a local brew pub with the Tuesday Night Turtles. I opted instead for a solo long run in Lynn Woods. It was only twenty degrees when I left my house to make the short drive to the woods but the sun was shining brightly without a cloud in the sky. The trails were still covered with a blanket of snow but I hoped it would be solid enough to make running not too much of a chore.

Climbing Stone Tower Hill

I mapped out a new route using the Lynn Woods trail map I downloaded from the internet. I included some trails on the north-east side of Walden Pond that I have never run before. I wasn’t sure of the total distance but figured it would take me about 3.5 hours to complete the workout. I started out on the fire roads and they were well packed from the Lynn Woods crew doing their nightly snowshoe runs. I enjoyed the easy running while it lasted as most of my run would be on the less traveled single-track trails.

Running along Undercliff Path

One of the rare bare spots.

It was early morning and the woods were very quiet. The only sounds I heard were the crunching of the snow under my feet, the chirping of birds and the relaxing sound of several babbling brooks. The first two hours were very enjoyable and I still had not sighted another human being. If fact I never did. I did spot a young white-tailed deer very close by but my crunching footsteps scared it away. I saw several different animal tracks during my run but not being much of an outdoorsman couldn’t identify them. It’s time to study up on animal tracking.

One of my favorite sights and sounds when alone in the woods.

View from Birch Pond Trail

After three hours of running, mostly in soft snow, my lower back started to bother me. It felt good when I stopped to take pictures but hurt as soon I started running again. I was ready to call it a day but still wanted to explore the new trails I planned for my route. It was hillier than I expected and not well marked. I had a difficult time finding the infrequent blazes painted on the trees and staying on trail. I was less than a half mile from where I parked when I got off trail. I back-tracked a few times but couldn’t find the trail that would bring me back to my track. I wasn’t really lost, just temporarily misplaced!

After wandering around the woods for 15 minutes I was about to bushwhack my way out. Suddenly I found the trail I was looking for. I walked passed it a few times previously and I’m not sure how I kept missing it. I guess it was sort of difficult to sport with snow on the ground. Everything looked the same to me. I ended up spending over 4.5 hours in the woods. The soft snow made for hard work by good fun. Not all of it was spent running (I stopped to take 53 photographs and three videos), but it felt good to put some serious time on my feet.

Several more photos of my run can be found here.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Western New Hampshire Trail Race Series Schedule Set For 2010

This seven race series will open its 2010 season in Newport, NH with the Six in the Stix trail race on June 12, 2010. It’s a rugged 6 mile trail run through the scenic Newport Town Forest. Pre-entry to each race in the series will cost you $15 and $20 for post-entries. You can also pre-register online for the full series and save a few bucks. That’s right, run all seven for only $85! You’ll save $20 and get a free pair of series running socks to boot!

Complete schedule is below:

# 1 Six in the Stix June 12, 2010 Newport, NH
# 2 All Out Trail Run June 26, 2010 Claremont, NH
# 3 Frenzy in the Forest July 10, 2010 Sunapee, NH
# 4 Wicked Wildcat Wander July 24, 2010 Charlestown, NH
# 5 XTERRA Stoaked Aug. 7, 2010 Hanover, NH
# 6 Farnum Five.5 Sept. 11, 2010 Lebanon, NH
# 7 A Pleasant Climb Oct. 9, 2010 New London, NH

More information on the series can be found on their website.

June feels like a long way off...

My 2009 Race Series Rankings

ENETRS - 4th Overall (201 male runners with 2 or more races)

ENETRS - 1st Male 50-59 (298 total in age group)

WMAC GT - 36th Overall (534 runners with 2 or more races)

Monday, January 18, 2010

Follow-up to Feel Good Farm Race Report

I’m not sure how I forgot about this in my original post since it was the highlight of the day. I was hanging around after the race talking to a group of runners from Rhode Island (Tuesday Night Turtles) when one of them invited me to join them in their traditional celebratory post-race gathering at a brew-pub. Since they were a nice, friendly group and I was famished (see original post), I gladly accepted. I followed them to Nashua (only running one yellow light in the process) where we converged on Martha’s Exchange on Main Street. The beer and food was almost as good as the conversation with Scott, Jenny, John, Ben, Robert, David (Jr & Sr) Emily and Chris. Sorry, I know I forgot a name or two but it was a long table and I was on the end! The camaraderie in this sport is truly amazing and I am very thankful to be a small part of it.


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Feel Good Farm Snowshoe Race Report

Race # 2 in the Granite State Snowshoe Series was held yesterday at Feel Good Farm in Lyndeborough, NH [results]. I’m considering filing a false advertizing complaint with the GSSS race committee. This race was nothing like its idyllic name implied. Four torturous climbs up and over 878 foot high Moose Mountain left me far from ‘feeling good’. The animals on the farm seemed happy though, especially the horse roaming around the open field parking lot prior to the start of the race.

I went out for a short warm up on the course with a few of my DRR teammates. I could see that the snow cover was minimal or non-existent in some spots. The warmer than usual temperatures over the past two days must have contributed to a significant amount of melt. When I got back to the parking lot I saw Steve and we went out for a warm up on the roads. Emily was just pulling into the farm as we were leaving. Late again!

The race started in an open field with about a 100 yard sprint to the single-track that entered into the woods. I was somewhere near the middle of the 116 person pack when we hit the woods. The course stared to climb up a small hill early on and then down a short, steep descent. Soon, we approached a rocky brook crossing which brought the train to a stop and backed things up a bit. After the brook, the real climbing began up Moose Mountain.

Single-track train up small climb.

Still strong but not for long.

Most of the people around me were walking the hill. I was no exception. I could tell a few people behind me were better climbers so I pulled off trail to let them pass. Once cresting the hill there was a long, twisting descent down the backside of the mountain. This would have been a fun, fast descent had there been adequate snow cover. Unfortunately, the trail was almost completely bare and there were many exposed large rock and roots on the way down. It was hazardous going for shoers and snowshoes alike. More on that later.

After some more twisting single-track running in the valley, the course headed back up Moose Mountain from another direction. This climb was more deceptive the than the first. The first climb was almost a straight shot up the mountain. The second was more like, climb, turn a corner, climb again, turn another corner, and climb some more. I kept thinking, “When will this thing end?” Eventually it did and it was another dive down the mountain over more rocks and roots and then some flat running back to the start/finish area and out for loop number two.

My version of 'flipping the bird' to RD Mike when he said I was looking good. He lies.

By the time I hit Moose Mountain for the third time I was completing drained. I was having a difficult time making any progress up the mountain. I mean more difficult than usual! I had bought some food with me to eat on the drive to the race but forgot to eat it. Duh! I think the lack of calories caught up to me and I was bonking. Who knew you could ‘hit the wall’ after 2 miles! Steve caught and passed me near the top of climb number three. I told him I was crashing hard and he offered some of his food and drink. Although I was in serious need of both I declined. Steve was having a good race and I didn’t want him to slow down and babysit me even if it was only for a couple of minutes.

Soon, Steve was long gone but the passing of me by others continued for the remainder of the second loop. I think I lost about 20 places in the last 1.5 miles. Emily was the last to pass me about ¼ mile from the finish line. She went by me with her usual smile and some words that I could not understand because my brain was completely drained of glycogen! I tried to hang on to her so I wouldn’t get passed anymore and it worked. I was very happy to cross the finish line. Very tired too!

Steve finishes with a smile.

Emily is smiling too as she nears the finish.

Unlike Steve and Emiliy, I cried when I saw the finish line.

After the race I noticed I had broken the toe cleats off both of my shoes and tore completely through one of the bindings. I think it happened on the first descent down the mountain when I hit a lot of rocks. I was having difficulty during the race getting traction on the climbs but thought it was due to fatigue. I’m sure the lack of cleats contributed to me slipping around. I don’t think the broken shoes made that much of a difference in the outcome of the race. It just wasn’t my day.

Crazy climbing course profile.

All photos in this post courtesy of Kristen Kozlosky. See all of her photos of the Feel Good Farm race here.

More photos of the race by Scott Mason.

Wednesday, January 13, 2010

2010 New England, New York & New Jersey Ultra Marathon Race Schedule & Results

Residing in the North East I have a particular interest in ultras in this region. I know you can get this information online from various websites but I thought it would be useful to have all the races handily at my finger tips with one click of my mouse. I believe this list is accurate and complete but if you know of an ultra race not list here send me an email or comment and I'll add it. It took some work to pull this together so I hope someone out there finds it useful. The schedule will also be on the side bar for future reference. Happy Racing!

02.27.10 Beast of Burden Winter 100 Mile & 24 Hr Race (NY)

03.07.10 Caumsett Park 50K (NY)

03.27.10 Paulinskill Sussex 100 Mile (NJ)

03.27.10 The Fells Trail Race 32M & 40 Mile (MA)

04.17-10 Traprock 50K (CT)

04.18.10 Don't Run Boston 50K & 50M (MA)

04.18.10 Self-Transcendence Ten Day Race (NY)

04.24.10 Sybil Ludington 50K (NY)

04.25.10 BPAC 6-Hour Distance Classic (NY)

04.25.10 Jack Bristol Lake Waramaug Ultra Marathon 50K, 50M &100K (CT)

05.01.10 Muddy Trail Run 50K (NJ)

05.06.10 McNaughton 200M & 500 Mile (VT) 

05.07.10 McNaughton 150 Mile (VT)

05.08.10 Long Island Greenbelt Trail 50K (NY)

05.08.10 MorFun Wapack 42M & 50 Miles (NH)

05.08.10 McNaughton 30M & 100 Mile (VT)

05.09.10 G.A.C. 6 Hour Run

05.14-16.10 3 Days at the Fair 48 Hour, 24 Hour, 12 Hour and 6 Hour Races (NJ)

05.15.10 Mind the Ducks 12 Hour Race (NY)

05.22.10 South Mountain 100K (NJ)

05.30.10 Pineland Farms 50K & 50 Mile (ME)

06.13.10 The Self Transcendence 3100 Mile Race (NY)

07.03.10 Finger Lakes Trail Run 50K & 50 MIles (NY)

07.17.10 Vermont 100K & 100 Mile (VT)

07.24.10 Running With The Devil 6 Hour & 12 Hour Races (NJ)

07.30.10 24 Hour Around The Lake Races 12 & 24 Hour Races (MA)

08.29.10 Green Lake Endurance Runs 50K & 100K (NY)

09.19.10 Pisgah Mountain 50K (NH)

09.18.10 Staten Island 6 Hour Race (NY)

09.18.10 Virgil Crest Ultras 50M & 100 Mile (NY)

09.26.10 Vermont 50K & 50 Mile (VT)

10.09.10 Can Lake 50K & 50 Mile (NY)

10.16.10 Mountain Madness 50K (NJ)

10.17.10 6 Hour Birthday Run (NY)

10.24.10 Bimbler's Bluff 50K (CT)

11.06.10 Stone Cat 50 Mile (MA)

Tuesday, January 12, 2010

More Snowshoe Fun

After trashing my legs at the GAC Fat Ass on Saturday I decided to go for a snowshoe run on Monday. I went to my usual stomping grounds (Breakheart) since time was an issue and it’s close to my house. Many of the trails had seen a lot of traffic since I was here last week. They were nicely compacted and it made for easier running most of the time. My legs were still feeling the effects of running 30K in deep snow but loosened up after 15 – 20 minutes. It was a quite day in the reservation. I only came across one person walking their greyhound by Pearce Lake.

Lazy brook deep in the woods.

I spend some time running near some of the small brooks and streams in the woods. Some people like bridges, others like thick green moss. I like brooks and streams that quietly meander their way along to forest floor, seeking a way to escape into open waters. After 25 minutes or so I felt adequately warmed up and decided to finish the workout with some hills. Climbing hills is definitely the weakest aspect of my shoeing and trail running. I find that strange because I was a very good uphill runner when I ran roads back in the day. It didn’t carry over to trails at all. As you can see from the elevation profile below I did a fair amount of climbing in the middle three miles. It felt good to do something different. I’ll try to add some hills once a week while there is still some snow cover.

Next up is the Feel Good Farm snowshoe race. A hill climber’s course from what I hear. I’m in big trouble!

Monday, January 11, 2010

G.A.C Fat Ass (30) 50K

The morning of the GAC Fat Ass 50K was super cold but thankfully sunny and not too windy. I had given KZ a lift to the race where we met Michelle and Bill H. I also finally got to meet Kevin ‘Pathfinder’ before the race and we chatted a bit about our goals for today, gear we were using and of course the cold. I never did see Rob at the race but found out later he did run. I waited in the parking lot for my friend Mary to arrive while most everyone else moved to the starting line. By the time we got to the start the race had begun. It wasn’t a problem because the course quickly narrowed to single-track and backed up the entire field. We were able to latch on to the rear of the train as it entered the woods.

It didn’t take long to realize it was going to be a very tough run. The snow was deep and dry making any forward motion an energy draining experience. With each step I never knew what direction my foot would slide. I really had to work hard to maintain my balance and forge ahead. After only one mile I had doubts about my original plan to run the marathon distance or more. After working my way through the long line of runners, and expending a ridiculous amount of energy, I caught up to KZ, Michelle and Bill around mile two.

I finished the first loop about 3 three minutes slower than planned. That wasn’t bad but I worked much harder than the pace indicated. After eating a few boiled potatoes with salt, and grabbing a handful of pretzels to go, I ran off in pursuit of Michelle who didn’t stop for aid. Conditions on the trail had deteriorated from the pounding it took from 100+ runners on the first loop. About half way through loop number two I realized I wasn’t having any fun. It was frustrating trying to run in the deep snow. I believe it would have been easier with snowshoes, and if I had them in my truck, would have tried them for a loop. The best description I heard of the trail was, “This is like running in sugar!”

The second loop was a little slower than the first but I was much more tired now. I didn’t want to run any more but also wanted a bigger mileage day than 20K. I was determined to do one more loop no matter how difficult it was going to be. KZ and Bill called it a day at 20K but Michelle was willing to go out for one more and off we went. The trail was even worse now although I would not have thought it possible. For the first 3 miles we leap-frogged one another but ran the last 3 miles of the loop together. I tried talking to past the time but sensed Michelle preferred some quiet time on the trail.  I can respect that as I am often introspective when running in the woods. On one particularly difficult, long stretch of trail we did talk about how we were soooo done with this run. We couldn’t wait for the third loop to be over.

With a little less than a mile to go, and without saying anything to one another, we picked up the pace and finished strong. I guess we both could smell the finish line. With the end in sight I felt a huge sense of relief. I was tired and hungry and just wanted to eat something from the incredible spread at the aid station. Some hot soup and a grilled cheese sandwich made everything feel better. I hung out for a while watching runners come into the aid station and head out for another loop. Anyone that completed the full 50K really earned it (and must have wanted it real bad). Thanks to the folks at G.A.C for hosting another excellent event!

Monday, January 4, 2010

Double Down

After a week of dreary weather it was great to see the sun shining this morning. I decided to take advantage of this sunny (but cold and windy) day by going for a run in Breakheart Reservation. My plan was to do a snowshoe run on the trails followed up with a “regular” run on the plowed, paved path. I decided to bring my camera along for the ride so I could get some winter shots in the woods.

Frozen lake cove.

Rock hopping ahead.

River crossing.

Cold stillness.

Many more photos of my run can be found here.

Much to my surprise, someone had already shoed though some of the trails so I only had to break trail on half of the run. I felt much better today than I did on my previous two snowshoe training runs. I had more strength climbing today and didn’t have any of the shin tightness I experienced on my other runs. I guess my body is starting to adapt to the unique stresses of snowshoeing.

I made a slow climb to the top of Eagle Rock to take in the view. It was very windy at the top and the wind had swept away most of the snow. I was worried I would break my cleats but fortunately I didn’t. I just got one caught in a crack in the rock and took a tumble. Lucky for me I landed on a soft spot. No, not my head, a pile of snow! Below is the video I took. I think you’ll be able to tell when I fell. Be warned, you’re going to get sun in your eyes. The audio is titled “Living Hills” but I have renamed it “Death March.” It seems more appropriate.

The rest of the run was uneventful and I made it back to the ranger station unscathed. I changed into my screw shoes and went back out for a 5K loop. The road was covered in hard-packed snow and the screw shoes provided excellent traction. I startled a few female walkers on my run even though I called out to them long before I got too close. I can never figure that out. I don’t think a perv would say “excuse me, coming up on your left.” if he’s planning to jump you.

Snowshoe run.

"Run" run

Another snow storm is forecasted for Friday. That could throw a monkey wrench into my plans to run the Fat A$$ 50K on Saturday but it’s still too soon to tell. If that falls though I can always run another snowshoe race.

It’s nice to have options….

Saturday, January 2, 2010

Beaver Brook Snowshoe Race Report

Today, the first race of the 2010 Granite State Snowshoe Series was held in Hollis, NH at Beaver Brook [results]. Snow had fallen throughout the night and into the morning making for excellent trail conditions. I was a little concerned about my general snowshoe conditioning going into this race. I had only done two short snowshoe runs this winter and both of them were pitiful.

I left home with ample time to make it for the 11:30 start. With light snow still falling and slick roads I knew traffic would be moving slower than normal. The drive was going well until I hit a long backup on Rt 3. It was only moving about 20 miles per hour so I guessed there must have been an accident up ahead. Those who have driven with me know I'm not the most patient driver and after two miles of creeping along I was getting annoyed. After another mile of slow going, traffic started to move again.

Pulling into the parking lot I immediately saw the yellow Xterra of Double J. No surprise. Jim races every weekend, sometimes both days. Also there was Steve Wolfe, Scott Graham, Dave Dunham and a host of other speedy guys. After checking in at the registration desk I went out on the snow-covered roads for a warm-up. I had my screw shoes with me so traction wasn't an issue.

After returning from the warm-up I spent some time talking with friend and fellow ultra runner Steve L and a few members of the Dungeon Rock Racing Team before the race started. It was Steve's first snowshoe race and he asked me if he should stop and take some pictures during the race. Steve loves taking pictures and I really enjoy checking out his photos and the hilarious captions he comes up with. I didn't want to discourage him but told him if he stops to take pictures in a race this short he may end up dead last. Yep, he takes A LOT of pictures!

Photos by Scott Mason here.

The race started in an open field an immediately went gradually uphill. I had positioned myself in the middle of the pack and was eating snow from the rooster tails kicked up from the runners ahead of me. Fun stuff! After about 150 yards the course made a U-turn onto a wide trail. The field became bottle-necked and I came to a stop for a few seconds. Once rounding the turn there was a little more running room but still everyone was packed in tight.

Photo by Scott Mason (taken from

The first half mile was all downhill, not too steep, but a nice gradual grade that made for some easy running. I tried to keep my pace in check here because we would have to run back up this hill to the finish and I wanted to have something left in the tank for the return trip. I started getting frustrated being caught up in the slow pace so I started to run wide off trail so I could pass slower runners. I DID NOT yell "slow runners to the right" (yes, I actually heard someone yell that before!) but instead told the runner ahead of me I was passing to the left (or right) so we wouldn't get tangled up.

I went thought the first mile in 9:11 yet still manage to pass several runners. The second mile was basically flat so I worked on maintaining my 9 minute pace and holding, or improving my position. Not much later, the lead runners were already heading back towards me. Double J was in the lead followed by the above named suspects. It was cool to see everyone coming in the opposite direction even though I then knew how far back I was from the leaders. I continued to pass runners and hit the mile two split in 8:54.

Then the climbing began! By this time the field had thinned out quite a bit and I could only see three people ahead of me. I am a poor uphill runner so I expected to get passed at any moment. I could hear footsteps behind me so I just kept plodding along trying not to slow too much on the climb. The footsteps were getting softer and soon I could not hear them anymore. I actually dropped someone on a hill. A rare and unexpected feat for me.

I passed two of the three people ahead of me (one fell down so that made it easy) and when I reached the third, the finish line was about 200 yards away. I encouraged the other runner to kick it in and he listened. Oh boy did he listen! He took off like he was shot from a cannon. I followed him to the finish and crossed the line in 23 flat (posted as 23:10 in official results). The race was advertized as a 5K but it was least a half mile short. This was the first snowshoe race that I didn't have to walk part of the course and also the first time I was never passed. But it was also the easiest course I have raced so far. I have a feeling this won’t happen again all season.

The snow’s still falling….

Friday, January 1, 2010

First Run of 2010

I made it out today for a short run in the snow. We only got about 1.5 inches of snow here so not enough to break out the snowshoes or the Kahtoolas. Just the right amount for my screw shoes though. The snow was wet enough to make that nice crunching sound with every footfall but not so wet as to get your feet soaked. My legs have been stiff all week from the 20 miles I ran on Monday. It was too much, too soon. I just wanted to see if today’s run would help me loosen up for the Beaver Brook Snowshoe race tomorrow, the first race of the Granite State Snowshoe Series. I think it helped a little but I’ll know better by noon tomorrow!

One down, 364 to go...

2009 In Review

Well, it seems like everyone is doing this so I thought I’d jump on the bandwagon. 2009 was a pretty good year for me. I accomplished my main goal of running an ultra. In fact, I ran two, a 50K at the Green Lakes Endurance Runs and a 50 mile at Stone Cat. I finished under my time goal in both races and felt relatively well after running 50 miles. Maybe I didn’t run hard enough? I also finsihed first in the Eastern New England Trail Race Series for the 50-59 age group.  It's not as impressive as it sounds.  I just showed up at more races than the other old bastards!

Ok, now for some numbers.

Overall 2009
Total miles: 1740
# of runs: 233
Avg. run: 7.5

Total miles: 274
# of races: 23
Longest: 50 miles
Avg. race distance: 11.9

Races by type
Trail: 16
Snowshoe: 4
Ultra: 2
Mountain: 1

Races by State
MA: 13
NH: 6
CT: 2
VT: 1
NY: 1

Misc Race Stuff (estimated)
Miles driven: 2,896
Gas/Tolls/Lodging: $575
Registration Fees: $450

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