Archive for the ‘Week 9’ Category

Week 9 – Laborious Twenty

Saturday, September 3rd, 2011

It’s Labor Day Weekend. Labor is defined by the Free Dictionary as: Physical or mental exertion, especially when difficult or exhausting. Given that, what better way to celebrate Labor Day than to run 20 Miles with your friends!

The key to getting through a run like this is think of it as 6 short runs, so here’s what we have on tap…

Run 1: This week we’ll start from Brueggers of course and head out West Wyoming, past the Stone Zoo, past Friendly’s to Park St. A left on Marble St will bring us over Rt93 to Forest St in Winchester where we’ll stop for water.

Run 2: From there we’ll continue to Highland Ave, follow that to the end and get some more water.

Run 3: Taking Rt38 over to Playstead Rd where we turn right along Oak Grove Cemetery, we’ll head into West Medford. Turn right on RT60/High St, over the railroad tracks, past the Dunkin Donuts (a good place to take a potty break if needed). High Street will take you to the edge of Medford, where you’ll see Arlington across the river. As you’re running High St be careful NOT to veer right at a fork in the road at Grove St, STAY ON HIGH ST. At the river there will be a little rotary, this is where you turn right on Mystic Valley Parkway and run along the Mystic Lakes. If you run along the left side of the road you’ll find a path to run on, giving your feet a break from the concrete and asphalt. At the end of this street you’ll turn right, go under the train tracks and up to a park where you turn left, keeping on Mystic Valley Parkway. There is a paved path in this park you can run which will bring you up to water stop 3 near Winchester Center.

Run 4: Next you run up to Washington St, turn left and follow Washington through a f way intersection. We’ve been here before, but it is a bit confusing. You want to cross through the intersection and stay on the street to the right on the other side. This is still Washington St. Run up past a church and through Winchester to the Gingerbread Construction Company. Don’t stop for breakfast, instead turn right up Forest St, up to the top where you’ll hit the first water stop again.

Run 5: You’ve done this run before… cross over 93, turn right on Park St, over to Friendly’s again and right on Main St in Stoneham. Run the back side of Spot Pond past the Sheepfold over to Elm St. Left on Elm and up, up up to the rotary at Highland Ave. Turn right at the Mobil Station onto Highland and find the water stop there.

Run 6: The last run of the day is one you’ve run in the other direction many times. Follow Highland Ave all the way to the rotary where the paper boy sits. Turn left onto the Fellsway East and cruise through the final hills of the day. When you get to Grimsby’s be glad you’re turning right, a flat last mile down West Wyoming to Main ending at a chair on a sidewalk in front of Brueggers. Yay!

For those running shorter, there is a short route posted but I suggest looking at running the prettier parts of the run. Look on the map and find a water stop to start and end at. This will make your run more interesting and give you the chance to keep a 20 mile runner company if they want it. (Warning: sometimes they don’t want it so be wary of the long distance runner that wants some alone time)

Another tip before I end this long post… This is the perfect chance to dry run your marathon day. Choose clothes appropriate for this weekend’s weather, but try to wear as much of your race day clothes as possible. The right shoes, socks, bra, underwear, shorts, and shirt are hard to find. Today you can learn what chafes and blisters you before you get out on the race course. Also test our your marathon meals. Dinner Saturday night and breakfast Sunday morning are key to how you run. Try your meals out today and see how they work tomorrow. Again better to find out that certain thing you think will work doesn’t when you’re running your 20 than when you’re running your marathon.

OK, enough from me. I need three or four water stop volunteers. I’ll by some supplies and pass them out at Brueggers before the run. If you’re running short and starting somewhere else, consider letting us use your car. I think Dave and BrianW will be out on the course for us keeping us well. If so two more cars will make things work out well. One at Eugene, one at the last stop. Then those two can move around and help us out. Let me know and THANKS in advance!

Who’s in for 20, or something else?! ROLL CALL!!!!

Week 9 – One of the Biggies!

Saturday, March 5th, 2011

This week those in our group training for Boston will be taking on their 20 Miler. A big run indeed. Here’s your opportunity to practice more than just the running. Put your game day plan in action starting the night before. Whatever you plan on eating for dinner the night before Boston, give it a try tonight. When you wake up in the morning eat your planned race day breakfast. When you get dressed put on those socks you think you’ll wear. Those shoes you want. That sports bra that you’re not sure will chafe or not. Temperatures will be in the 40s and 50s for a change so you might want to try out the exact outfit you’d wear if you hit that weather on race day.

Speaking of weather, did you hear what I just said (or read what I just typed actually) ITS GONNA BE ABOVE FREEZING! For the first time in what feels like forever we’re gonna have a Sunday Run above freezing. It may be raining however, so dress appropriately.

For those a bit intimidated by the distance of this run, take this one as 5 trips to the water stop. From water stop to water stop is far as you have to go at any one time so don’t think of it as one big run but 6 short ones.

The route: you’ll love it. Starting out West Wyoming we pass the Stone Zoo past Friendly’s and out Park St. A right on Marble over I93 to the first water stop. One down.

From there you’ll head down Forest St to a left on Highland Ave, through the hills to the end of Highland. Water Stop 2 already.

Now we’ll break some new ground for this season. Turn left on Rt38/Main St and go about a half mile to Playstead Rd on the right. Turn on to this wide road by Oak Grove Cemetery to cut over to Rt60. At Rt60 you’ll be at the  West Medford Commuter Train stop with a Dunkin Donuts in front of you (a popular place to take a break, if you know what I mean). Turn right onto Rt60/High St and follow this towards Arlington. There is one tricky point here, where High St branches. A right would take you to Grove St, no matter how straight that looks DON’T GO RIGHT HERE!  Stay to the left to follow High St. You’ll end up at a rotary, you’ll see a bridge that heads into Arlington, DON’T GO OVER THE BRIDGE. Take a right onto Mystic Valley Parkway. A very nice road with pleasant views, enjoy this flat fun part of the run. At the end of this road you’ll turn right, go under the commuter rail and turn left to stay on the Mystic Valley Parkway. Here you’ll find water stop 3.

Leaving here you’ll skirt the edge of Winchester Center and take a left at the second set of lights onto Washington St. Washington will take you across Mt Vernon St where you’ll then keep to the right to stay on Washington St. Follow Washington St all the way to Forest St (look for the Gingerbread Construction Company as a landmark) and turn right to follow a series of hills back up Forest St to water stop 4 (same as water stop 1).

Next you’ll head back to Marble, turn right at Friendly’s onto Rt28/Main St in Stoneham and travel the back side of Spot Pond. Turn left on Elm to continue the loop of Spot Pond, and right on Highland Ave for the final water stop of the day.

From Highland you’ll run to the rotary at the Fellsway East, turn right and flow through the hills of the Fellsway East to West Wyoming Ave (Grimsby’s). Turn right onto W Wyoming, left on Main and back to Brueggers!

Shorter route? You can either start with the longer route runners and enjoy the route described or meet at water stop run and run the middle of the route for about 10 miles.

Water Stops, Barry and I will do our best to cover the stops, one more helper would make the plan run a lot smoother.

Who’s in? This is a good question this week. With a 20 miler in Salem and the Stu’s in Clinton we’ve got a lot of runners heading off to do their own thing. We may have some visitors join us from Somerville though to fill in some of the holes. Either way it would be a great help to know before I head out to buy Gatorade and water so if you’re a regular or a visitor, please post here to let us know you’re coming. So again, who’s in? ROLL CALL!

Week 9 – Water stop helpers needed!

Thursday, September 2nd, 2010

I’m definitely going to need a hand for this Sundays run!

I can easily handle the stop on Forest St, but im going to need some cars parked further out for a few more stops.

So, can anyone take care of stops # 2,3 and 5?  I can meet you there in the morning and bring you back to Brueggers to start the run if you need a ride.

Let me know if you can help!  I’ll load you up with supplies on Sat, or before the run.

2 -Highland Ave (Winchester)

3- Mystic Valley Parkway

5- Highland Ave by the Flynn Rink

a.k.a Bobby Boucher

Week 9 – From Stop to Stop until You Drop

Sunday, March 8th, 2009

For all the weather hurdles mother nature has thrown our way this winter, she really treated us to a glorious day for a 20 miler.  Starting out at 8:15 the clouds were cleared from overnight rain, the streets were damp but manageable, the sidewalks clear of snow for the most part, and the temperatures hovered in the mid 40s.  Runner’s, 23 in all, were raring to get out their in their tights or shorts, long sleeves, maybe a jacket, and hit the road for today’s test, six sections of 3 to 4 miles each with a decent hill or two in just about each of them.

Section 1: Main St to West Wyoming, stretching out the legs, feeling out the run, heading to the first hill of the day, a short but sweet scamper from the LynnFells Parkway up to Spot Pond. Following the road past the Stone Zoo, past Friendly’s and over to water stop 1 at Forest St at the overpass of I93 where Rick, Liz and I awaited. JohnM and JohnK were first to come in followed by Joe. Judi passed by with a big smile and wave and then the masses rolled in: Brian, Ed, Carol, Jen, Don, Ginny, Nick, Christina, Jose, Erin, Demi, Lois, Nancy, Pam, and Matt… each getting a plastic cup and a Sharpie to mark for reuse when we  returned there later in the day.

Section 2: Refueled the group headed out again, with Liz and I joining in. Down Forest St and onto Highland Ave in Winchester where several hills lay waiting for us. Lois and I stuck together chatting through the rollercoaster hills, keeping Jen and Don nearby and Ginny and Nick in sight up ahead. At that point my plan for the day was hatched, run with Lois until I had a mile left, then sprint to catch Nick and Ginny. Water stop 2 had a big crowd congrating with Lauren and Barry serving as hosts. The crowd was so big we infuriated a Comcast service van driver for drifting too far out into the street. Oh well, he’ll get over it.

Section 3: Nick and Ginny had a pretty good head start this time, and with a bunch of people taking advantage of the restrooms at the Dunkin Donuts along the trip it was just Lois and I running along the Mystic Lakes. The weather was warming up but a wind whipped up as we turned onto Mystic Valley Parkway, running along a pathway and crossing over by a track we knew Nancy’s car was coming soon but the trees obscured the view delaying the joy of our upcoming break until we spotted Ginny and Nick finishing up theirs.

Section 4: Lois admitted our run at my pace was tiring her legs but she forged on like a trooper. Down Washington Street we could see Ginny on the sidewalk and Nick in the street and I sized up their lead, calculating a sprint up Forest St and I could catch them. As we made the turn I told Lois “No lollygagging!” and off I went in pursuit of the runners ahead. With the warm temps and the melting snow my sprint went through puddles and I could feel the cold wet spraying on my calves and hamstings. If I were running alone I would never do this, but with Nick and Ginny growing bigger with each step I knew I was running well. With breath heaving and wheezing, across the Highland Ave intersection and climping up the steep hill I approached with words of encouragement to follow me up the hill. “Aw, he’s stopping at his car!” was Nick’s reply, which was true until he said it. I took it as a challenge that this would not be my last water stop of the day.

What a water stop it was though. Rick had hung all our Gatorade cups out to dry in the sun like the day’s laundry. With a lot of time on his hands as he waited for our return they were even lined up alphabetically for easy access. Ginny’s was prepacked with a Hammergel to remind her to eat during her run. And for the record Lois didn’t lollygag, she came blasting up the hill right behind us.

SLR Cup Dispenser

Section 5: Back over to Friendly’s, where more runners also visited the fine restrooms, we turned right onto Main St in Stoneham (the third Main St of the day) and rolled through the hills on the backside of the pond. I believe this spot was noteworthy for many, for the first time in a 2009 Sunday Long Run runners stripped off that outer layer and ran in short sleeves! Spring had arrived, probably just temporarily but it was here!!! On the last downhill approaching the turn onto Elm I picked up the pace in my second pursuit of Nick and Ginny on the day. To my surprise, and maybe she didn’t notice it, Lois picked it up to and stuck with me as we approached the corner… then smartened up and ran her own race up the hill. I caught Nick, sore knee and all, then Ginny, sore stomach and all. Ok, on a good day they probably wouldn’t have allowed me to do that twice in a run but that’s all I got.

Section 6: I stopped at Lois’ car, 13.5 good miles under my belt. Lois stopped too, 16.5 under hers. We sent Nick and Ginny off to finish their 20, although Nick returned shortly with worries about his balky knee. Evidence of Joe, Judi, Brian, Ed, and Carol’s visits sat in Lois’ car in the form of a stack of plastic cups. A short time later Lauren and Barry passed by on their way to finish 14 miles. Jose, Christina, Demi, Jen and Don stopped in good spirits before tackling the last of their 20 miles. Nancy finished up with us, also completing 16.5. From there we drove back to Brueggers passing the crew as the impressively tackled some tough hills late in the game, good practice for what Boston has in store.

It was good to see the strength and stamina in the faces and strides of each runner today. Despite some physical challenges that make this tough (nobody said training is easy) mentally everyone looked determined to tackle the challenge they put before themselves. Inspiring! Impressive!

( Section 7: I took my son James out for 3 more miles this afternoon. I just couldn’t help but get a little more out of this beautiful day)

Week 9 – March comes in Like an SUV – Recap

Sunday, March 1st, 2009

This morning nine runners headed out before the snow began to fall to get in their Sunday long run. They followed the substitute route to take advantage of the efficiency of the water stops, one stop, three visits. Running along this route provided excitement within the first mile. After crossing Franklin St on Main St an SUV, which was traveling south towards Melrose had just minutes before crossed the yellow line, the northbound side of Main St, the curb, the sidewalk, and the brick and glass storefront of Platinum, a new hair coloring salon in Melrose.

Since my body is used to getting up early on Sunday mornings, even without and alarm I was awake at 6:30. I wasn’t running today but decided to visit the water stop and the neighboring Dunkin Donut. Lauren and Barry Cossette set up in the same spot my car occupied the day before, providing water and gatorade to the runners as they went by. The wind was still blowing in from the north but with slightly less force. The temperature had fallen about 15-20 degrees overnight too. And as Audie and Suzanne pulled out to do their lap around Lake Quannapowitt the snow flakes began to fall.

I had my breakfast while sitting with Lauren in her car waiting for the group to hit the water stop for the second time. Judi came back from the lake and headed straight back to Brueggers to finish a 10 mile run the day after running long on the Boston course with Jen Rappaport. Joe came through next, the birthday boy celebrating his day with a strong 18 miles, spilled gatorade all over himself before heading over to Breakheart. Behind him came BarryC with a pack of our friends from Mystic: JohnM, Jen, and JohnK… the last of which was dressed in shorts and a single longsleeve shirt and insisting he was running hot. Lauren jumped in with Jen and headed down Nahant for a loop of Breakheart, Barry catching a breather followed behind shortly after, whilethe Johns headed back to Brueggers. Audie came in from the lake and headed out Nahant too, determined to complete 16 miles for his longest post-injury run. Suzanne braved the ice and snow as well following the full route.

Heading back to Brueggers I left the water stop duties in the able hands of the Cossettes, thank you two for providing the stop today! Back at Brueggers John, John, and Judi chatted speedwork while Joe barrelled through to Pine Banks and back to finish his 18. He reported slippery conditions on snow covered ice in Breakheart and various places along the run. Walt’s prediction was very close, the timing was tough to nail down but the dusting of snow and icy spots was right on, runnable but not as pleasant as yesterday.

Now it’s time to hunker down for the real snowstorm, which judging by the line in the bread and milk aisle at Shaw is gonna be a big one. I hope those running Stu’s in Clinton avoided any nasty weather. Stay safe and see you all on the other side of the storm… First Tuesday of March!