Archive for March, 2018

Week 12 – Please Respond. Drivers Wanted. Runner Info Needed.

Sunday, March 18th, 2018

It’s time to start organizing next week’s 22 mile Hopkinton to Boston College run.

Wanted: Drivers – Qualifications include a valid Drivers License, a free Sunday (3/25), ability to pour water and Gatorade and hand to a runner. Must be capable of arriving at Brueggers at 6:45am, follow direction, and be available to at least 2pm. Payment will be in smiles, hugs, and deep appreciation from weary runners. Please indicate your desire to volunteer and the number of seats in your car (including your drivers). By Thursday I’ll notify you whether you’ve been accepted.

Response Required – Runners interested in running a portion or the entire 22 mile route, please respond and tell me how many miles you are interested in running and your approximate time you expect your run to take.
Please indicate whether you are interested in being part of an early bird start, we haven’t done this in the past, and I am not committing to actually doing it because it can make water stops harder to coordinate, so I’m toying with the idea to try to get people to the finish in a tighter time period.
The cost of the run is still a minimum of $2, or $2/Gu you plan on eating. Please indicate how many Gu you will need so I bring enough for everyone. If you don’t ask for Gu, please be aware runners behind you may be expecting that Gu you see so don’t have more than one Gu.
Note, in case there is more runners than car seats, preference will be given to runners that regular attend the SLR. Runners should also bring a few dollars for their driver, they’ll be driving well over 50 miles and paying tolls to help you run.
After the run we will be heading upstairs to the Knights of Columbus for a celebratory lunch. If interested I’ll be collecting $10 per person join in on the party. The bar will be open for cash purchases as well.

Please respond before Tuesday Night. Wednesday we’ll start putting together the plan!

Week 11 – May The Road Rise To Meet You

Saturday, March 17th, 2018

Happy St Patrick’s Day to you all! Today is traditionally full of drinking and dancing, which I hear was practiced at last week’s water stops as well. Thank you Lois, Hank, Tom, Audrey, and Jen Elise for helping everyone get through their run hydrated and well fed. Congrats to all that ran the Black Cat, and those venturing off to places like Virginia Beach to run races this week. For the rest of you, keep focused on what’s ahead of you, there are only a few weeks left to your adventures.

So while I was away Mother Nature obviously thought you had it too easy this winter and decided to challenge you with more snow and wind. Part of your Boston training is toughening you up for whatever race day brings. There are no short cuts to that and the weather will always be there to let you know you need a little more toughening. With that said, I was hoping for some rain to come in and wash this snow away so I didn’t have to change this week’s route. No Luck. Not even on Luck of the Irish day. We will run through the paved side of Breakheart, but we will skip the hills and pop out at the Voc to Wakefield High School and run Farm Street back instead.

The Route

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’?

Week 10 – In Like A Lion

Saturday, March 10th, 2018

After a successful 10 and 20 mile week, with many runners improvising distances in between, this week we’ll be stepping back the miles and recovering as we rebuild up over the next few weeks. Mother nature has once again saved you from the hills of Breakheart, dropping snow as well as trees all over the area. So this week’s route will have some changes. The crowd is expected to be light with the Black Cat 10 miler and 20 miler happening today.

The Route

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 – Will continue up Main Street through Wakefield Center, bearing left onto Common Street, turning right on Church at Lake Quannapowitt, and then turning left at the traffic lights at North Ave. This will bring you back to the water stop at Nicks.

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

Full-2 – Run up to Lake Quannapowitt by taking Main Street through Wakefield Center, staying to the right of the lake. Turn left on Lake Quannapowitt Parkway through the parking lot to a left on North Ave and take North Ave straight back to Nicks 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 Montvale Tire.

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 16.5 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 Montvale Tire for the Full runners. Thank you Lois and your band of water stop helpers!

Roll Call! – Who’s in?

Week 9 – Time for Twenty

Saturday, March 3rd, 2018

Last week we endured yet another harsh rainy Sunday after a better weather Saturday. Running marathons are almost an equal part body versus mind endeavor. While we are training your heart, lungs, and legs to get through increasingly tough miles, we’re also training your brain to adopt the “I can do anything” attitude. You’ll need both when things hit a bump in the road on a 26 mile journey, and things typically do hit that bump. If you can run through some wind and some rain or some snow, you can take whatever they give you on marathon day. The 25 people that proved that last Sunday, plus those that were out racing in Hyannis in it, you can do anything! Hopefully the blustery wind that has been howling for over a day is gone by tomorrows run.
Shoes… If you are running a marathon in 6 weeks, its time to look at the bottom of those running shoes you’re wearing. You’ll likely see all these miles 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 line with, or you’ll save the tread on this pair by only using it for long runs hear on out.
The Route… This week we have a trip to Winchester, and for those running long a visit to the Mystic Lakes.

Start – We’ll start down Main Street to West Wyoming, taking a right and running 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 on Marble Street. Marble will become Forest Street as you enter Winchester, where you’ll find a water stop tucked 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. They’ll continue on Highland until they find a little park on the right side at the corner of Eaton Street. This will bring you down to Washington Street where you’ll turn right. Continue on Washington to the Gingerbread Construction Company where you’ll turn right on to Forest Street. Run back up Forest Street until you find the water stop at Eugene again.

Half-Finish – The third leg of the half run will take you back to Melrose the way you came. Go over I-93 and Forest Street will become 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 past Grimsby’s onto West Wyoming, 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. This week continue straight on Highland all the way to the end 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 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. I believe Hank is back, Tom and I will be there,  and Sheree Wheeler has volunteered to help out with the stops.

Roll Call!  Who’s in?