Archive for March, 2019

2019 Boston Training Run – Planning

Sunday, March 17th, 2019

It’s time to plan the Boston Course Run which will be on March 24th this year. For those new to it, or those that have forgotten, three weeks prior to Boston we leave Brueggers at 7AM, carpool out to Hopkinton, people get out and run, others move cars from water stop to water stop along the whole course, and in the end we all wind up at Boston College around lunch time. After that we head back to Melrose and maybe we have lunch. To make this all happen without a hitch everyone must follow my elaborate plans.

(1) Cars? I have a handful of drivers already volunteering, and each of them has a car. As runners sign up we’ll need a seat in a car for each of them. Most cars fit four comfortably, so if you have a car with many seats and don’t mind someone else driving it, we could borrow it. If you are running the full or close to it, you can’t drive the course (you’ll be running and your car won’t magically appear at the finish). If you volunteer your car be prepared for it to be in use between 7AM and 2PM.

(2) Drivers? Again, note that its very difficult to run and drive at the same time. I know you all can drive from Melrose to Hopkinton, I’m more interested in who can drive the car along the race course from Hopkinton to BC. People who want to run only half of the course can switch in Wellesley and drive the other half… if they have someone that can drive the other half. If you’re driving be prepared to be needed between 7AM and 2PM.

(3) Runners? I assume somewhere between 1 and 50 people which makes it hard to plan. Let me know you’re running by THIS WEDNESDAY, last minute additions are not easy and frankly make me very angry. If you don’t let me know by Wednesday I probably won’t have a seat for you. Also let me know how far you plan on running (full or half, of somewhere in between). If you’re running the half indicate a preference of first half (flat to downhill) or second half (flat to hilly). I’ll try to fit you in to your preferred part of the run. Again, if you’re running just a bit of the run still be prepared to be with us from 7AM to 2PM.

(4) Buts? If you have a special case (I want to run but I need to….) consider the impact on everyone else before you ask. This isn’t simple to plan and the equation gets more difficult with each request. I’ll do my best to make things work but not all variations can be accommodated.

OK, who wants in? Again I have to know you’re coming to have a seat in a car for you.

What I have so far:

Drivers
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4 Lois Parker Carmona
4 Tom Gorman
4 Audrey Paradis
4 Hank Murphy / Lee Romprey
4 Liz Tassinari
5 Sheree Wheeler
4 Brian Walfield
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22 Seats for Runners

Full Runners
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1 Nicole Jacob
2 Matt Kerton
3 Marian Sales
4 Marianne Chmielewski
5 Jessi Marquardt
6 Freddi Triback
7 Jeff Rushton
8 Judi Chiavetta
9 Dan Slattery
10 Thuy Dang
11 Chris Hancock
12 Audrey Recupero
13 Regina Curran
14 Julie Smith Galvin
15 Bob Cosman
16 Andy Nagelin
17 Katie Sinnott

Half Runners
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18 Yvonne Liu-Constant
19 Michele DeAngelo (2)
20 Marty Hergert (1)
21 Mary O’Connell (1)
22 Sarah Pilcher

Right now things just fit, please no last minute additions!
Tomorrow I’ll put together the detailed plan together, but please confirm your inputs.

Week 11 – May The Road Rise To Meet You ????

Saturday, March 16th, 2019

Last Week – I hear was miserable! While most were off running races, a few trudged through some of the Sunday Long Run in wind blown snowy conditions. Congrats to Black Catters, Malden Lap Runners, and the SLR troopers.

This Week – Start your St Patrick’s Day off with some miles. I assume the hilly side of Breakheart is unrunnable, but the flatter side is. If it isn’t Tom and Audrey are in charge of setting you off in a different direction. But I think the plan will be to run Swain’s Pond, head to Breakheart, run the flat side but skip the hills and pop out at the Voc and run back Farm Street.

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Start 1 – Everyone crosses Main Street and turns immediately left on to East Foster. Run up to Melrose Common and take a right onto 6th Street. Continue straight as this becomes Swains Pond Avenue. Swains Pond will take you up to Turners Pond where you’ll turn right at a stop sign to continue on Swains Pond Ave. There will be a point where you meet Lebanon Street, sometimes people just follow left and end up in Malden, don’t do that, instead take a sharp right onto Lebanon, then a left at the traffic lights on to Forest Street. At the end of Forest Street you’ll hit Main Street where you’ll find Water Stop 1 in the parking lot of Citizens Bank.

Start 2 – Everyone continues together onto Winter Street, past the Oak Grove MBTA stop to a 5-way intersection. Cross straight across to get on Glenwood Street. This will take you through some hilly roads over to Highland Ave where you’ll turn right and then immediately turn right onto the Fellsway East. Continue on to Grimsby’s where you’ll go straight on to the LynnFells Parkway. When you get to Melrose High School look for a water stop at the knoll on your right.

Half Finish – If you’re running the half route you’ll continue on with the full runners down the LynnFells Parkway until you get to the stop light at Main Street in Saugus. Turn left, and immediate left onto Howard. Take Howard back to a left on Green Street. Green Street will merge with Main Street which will take you back to Brueggers with 11 miles under your belt.

Full 3 – If you’re running the full you’ll continue along the LynnFells Parkway until you hit the Saugus Breakheart entrance. Head up to the headquarters and look for a water stop.

Full 4 – Run the flatter side of Breakheart by entering to the left, keeping right at the beach and popping out at the Vocational School. Run down to Wakefield High School and turn left on Farm Street. Farm will become Main Street in Saugus where you’ll take a right at the second set of traffic lights back on to the LynnFells Parkway. Continue back to Melrose High School where the last water stop will be waiting for you.

Full Finish – To finish the full you’ll take the LynnFells back to Grimsby’s, turn left on Wyoming and left on Main and finish at Brueggers with 18 miles to your credit.

Water Stops – After a night of celebrating St Patrick’s Day we should have some combination of Tom, Audrey, and Hank out there to get you through.

Roll Call – Who will we see at the top o’ the mornin’?

Next Week – Time to start planning next week. I won’t be around, but I will be planning the Hopkinton to Boston College Run. I would like you to not just IFTF and IFTH for this week, but if you can not whether you are planning on running all, half, or none of next week’s run let me know now. I also would like those driving to let me know. Starting after tomorrow’s run there will be a daily post about what will happen next week. Thanks!

Week 10 – After the Lion

Saturday, March 9th, 2019

Last Week – We finished February with a beautiful, upbeat run to Winchester for 20 miles and 10 miles. The temperature was in the mid-30s, but the bright sun and lack of wind made the day feel like the warmest of the year. As they tackled the longest run of the season, runners were up beat at the water stops manned by Hank, Lois, Tom, and Audrey.

This Week – Then came March like a Lion! With a large snow fall, lazy shovelers, and consistently freezing temperatures, running this week has been abysmal. If you do find a stretch of shoveled sidewalks it tends to end at a 4ft snowbank on a corner. As the days warm, the snow will melt and then form into slick patches of ice by morning. Needless to say, we won’t be running Breakheart this week with snow and ice covering its paths. We will run Lake Q and return to Melrose for a trip around Breakheart. With Black Cat today and the Malden “Block Party” Half Marathon tomorrow, I suspect the crowd will be light at the SLR.

The Route –

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Start-1 – We’ll be running up Main Street, past Ell Pond, all the way in to the Wakefield, stopping at Nick’s Pizza for a water stop.

Half-2 – Continue up Main Street through Wakefield Center, bearing left onto Common Street, turning left on Church St at Lake Quannapowitt, and then turning left at the traffic lights at North Ave. This will bring you back to the water stop at Nick’s.

Half-Finish – Run back Main Street to Brueggers to finish up your 8 mile run.

Full-2 – Continue up to Lake Quannapowitt by taking Main Street through Wakefield Center, staying to the right of the lake. Turn left on to Lowell St and then a quick left on to Lake Quannapowitt Parkway. Run through the parking lot to a left on North Ave and take North Ave straight back to Nick’s for another water stop.

Full-3 – Next we’ll run along Nahant over to Wakefield High School. Since Breakheart is snowed in, we’ll turn left on to Farm Street, left on Water Street and left back on Main Street in Wakefield Center. Return to Nick’s Pizza for another water stop.

Full-4 – Return to Melrose along Main Street, passing Brueggers, passing Marathon Sports, and look for a water stop on the left in the parking lot at Sullivan Tire (Formerly Montvale Tire) for a quick water stop.

Full-Finish – Continue on Main Street up past Pine Banks Park. Enter in to Malden, turning left on Forest Street. Forest will take you over to Lebanon Street. Run on Lebanon taking a left on East Foster. When you get to Main Street you’ll take a right to finish at Brueggers for about 16.7 miles.

Water Stops – I’ll be gone this week, so Lois Parker Carmona will lead the way this week. With the change in route there will be two stops, one at Nick’s you’ll see several times, and one at Sullivan Tire for the Full runners. Thank you Lois and your band of water stop helpers!

Roll Call! – Who’s in?

Week 9 – Tens and Twentys

Saturday, March 2nd, 2019

Last Week – We endured our harshest Sunday Run yet. Despite constant rain fall and temperatures hovering in the mid-30s, over 25 runners took to the streets of Melrose, Malden, Medford, and Wakefield to get a 9 mile or 18 mile run in. Big thanks to Hank, Lois, and Tom for taking care of the food and drink that fueled a very tought, character building, run. Each season there is a run in which more than the miles challenge you, those are the most memorable runs.

Running Shoes – Its time to look at the bottom of those running shoes you’re wearing. You’ll likely see all these miles you’ve been running have started to wear this pair out. This is a good time to hit up the running shoe store and get yourself another pair. You’ll either be breaking in the pair you will toe the starting line with, or you’ll save the tread on this pair by only using it for long runs here on out. Either way, plan ahead so you have a good pair of racing shoes for the big race.

This Week – We take on one of the long ones. For the marathon trainers its a 20 mile jaunt to the cusp of Arlington, and for the half marathon trainers there’s 10 miles that bring you into the Winchester Highlands.

Start – This week everyone starts down Main Street to West Wyoming where they’ll take a right and run up past Grimsby’s to Spot Pond. Turn right at the pond, past the Stone Zoo, past Friendly’s, straight onto North Border Rd. Continue to a set of lights where you’ll turn left on Marble Street. Marble will become Forest Street as you enter Winchester, where you’ll find a water stop tucked in on Eugene Drive.

Half 2 – The half runners will continue with the long runners, heading down Forest Street and turning left on Highland Ave where the Winchester Hospital direction sign is. Continue on Highland until you find a little park on the right side at the corner of Eaton Street. Turning right on Eaton will bring you down to Washington Street where you’ll turn right. Continue on Washington to the Gingerbread Construction Company and turn right on to Forest Street. Run up, up, and up Forest Street until you find the water stop at Eugene again.

Half Finish – The final leg of the half run will take you back to Melrose the way you came. Go over I-93 on Forest Street as it becomes Marble Street. At the set of lights turn right on Park Street which becomes North Border Road, taking you back past Friendly’s. Continue straight as you go past the Stone Zoo to where Pond Street turns left to head towards Melrose. Run straight past Grimsby’s onto West Wyoming, then turn left on Main Street and get back to Brueggers to finish your 10 Mile run!

Long 2 – The long runners will head down Forest and turn left on Highland with the half runners. Continue straight on Highland, past Winchester Hospital, past where the half runners turn, straight through a 5-way intersection staying on Highland, all the way to the end of Highland where you’ll find a water stop.

Long 3 – You’ll venture into new terrain for this section. Turn left on Main Street/Rt38 and head to Medford. Cross to the right side of the road and as you run along the wall of the Oak Grove Cemetery, turn right at Playstead Road. This will continue along the cemetery, past a soccer field, along the commuter rail to High Street in Medford. You’ll turn right on High, cross the train tracks, and if you must the Dunkin Donuts has been a convenient rest stop for many years. Continue on High Street, making sure to keep left to stay on High where Grove Street forks off. DO NOT GO ONTO GROVE STREET. High will bring you to the source of the Mystic River. Do not cross the Mystic or you’ll be in Arlington and we don’t go to Arlington. Instead turn right on the Mystic Valley Parkway at the little rotary. Follow this past the Mystic Lakes, which feed the Mystic River, until you get to what seems to be the end of the Mystic Valley Parkway where you’ll turn right on Bacon Street. Follow Bacon under the commuter rail and then take your first left onto Mystic Valley Parkway (told you it wasn’t the end). This part of the Mystic Valley Parkway runs along the Aberjona River, which feed the Mystic Lakes. Along this stretch will be a water stop which feeds you.

Long 4 – Continue along the Mystic Valley Parkway, going through a set of traffic lights and then turning left at the next set of lights on to Washington Street. Washington will take you through a five way intersection where you cross Mt Vernon Street and keep right to stay on Washington. If you run past Winchester High School, well you didn’t learn from your mistakes the last time we ran through here and are likely to be lost for a while. Washington will cross Winchester taking you over to the Gingerbread Construction Company where you could buy a muffin but won’t, you’ll instead turn right onto Forest Street and head back up, up, up to the water stop at Eugene Drive.

Long 5 – After this water stop you’ll continue on Forest over I-93 as the road becomes Marble Street. You’ll turn right at the lights onto Park Street and continue as that becomes North Border Road. At Friendly’s you’ll turn right onto Main Street and continue as that becomes the Fellsway West. Turn left on Elm Street, which will stay Elm Street all the way up to the rotary at the other Highland Ave. Turn right onto Highland and look for a stop right after you turn.

Long Finish – The final leg of this journey will take you down Highland all the way to the traffic circle at the Fellsway East. Turn left and follow the Fellsway East through our version of Heartbreak Hill as you make your way to Grimsby’s. Here you will happily remember that you can take a right on West Wyoming and a left on Main to finish your 20 Mile run at Brueggers!

Water Stops – There are quite a few stops this week. We should have Hank, Lois, Tom, Audrey, and myself out there helping you move along.

Roll Call! Who’s in?