Archive for September, 2013

Week 12 – T W E N T Y – T W O

Friday, September 27th, 2013

Twenty two is the longer long run and 11 is the not-as-long long run this week.

I can sense your excitement as you read this blog.

As has been said before, when the runs get as long as these, it’s really better to think of it as just getting from water stop to water stop. For the longer runners, that would just be 6 short runs! And for those doing the shorter route, that is only 2 short runs! You can do that.

Start now by doing all that you can to make it the best run. Hydrate. Sleep as well you can, especially Friday night. Eat healthy food. Most of all, don’t stress about it. 2 or 6 short runs and you’ll be done. We should have a gorgeous day to run a course nearly the same as we ran a couple weeks ago — a pleasant run through Melrose, Stoneham, Winchester, Medford, close enough to spy Arlington, back through Winchester and Stoneham to Melrose. Phew, that is quite a tour. Acquaint yourself with the maps, please.

I think I’m all set with waterstops. Just awaiting some confirmations, but I believe we’re all set. I’ll post here later with confirmation of what is what and who will be where.

Questions? Spontaneous squeals of excitement? Who is IFTF or IFTH? or in for some distance that isn’t quite the full or the half?


p.s. Good luck to Bill Ozaslan  and Mikey Hartin who will be running the Clarence Demar Marathon on Sunday morning. We’re moving our feet with you in spirit!


Week 11 – Scenic Run with Water Views and Tree-lined Hills

Friday, September 20th, 2013

We have a beautiful run ahead of us! Yeah… it is almost 18 miles/just over 11miles… and, yeah, it does have a few hills to contend with.  But if you’re going to run long, why not enjoy the scenery with other running fools like us?

Okay, this is week 11. On a serious note, now is the time to pay close attention to seeing what works. If you have in your mind something you think you want to try, may it be the pre-run breakfast, the new singlet or shorts or socks or basically anything that goes in your belly or touches your skin, be it apparel or product, NOW is the time to try it out. We’re moving into the last 1/3 of the training, the time of ‘dress rehearsals’.

PLEASE TAKE A LOOK AT THE MAPS! Links are to your right, click on week 11, long version or shorter-long version. It is your responsibility to know where you’re going. I won’t have printed copies of the map, so please familiarize yourself with where we are headed. Feel free to bring a copy of the map along with you if you are worried.

The course:

This week’s run is almost 18 miles, with some gently rolling hills. (Love the hills, and never believe gently rolling). We’ll head up to Melrose Common, turn right and wind through tranquil Swains Pond, swing back onto Lebanon and left on Forest St past Oak Grove Cemetery. At the end of that street you’ll find your first water stop at Citizen’s Bank.

From there the route will take you past the Oak Grove T Stop and through a 5 way intersection. Straight through to Glenwood St. Follow Glenwood out to the Highland Ave rotary where the newspaper boy sits and turn right onto the Fellsway East. You’ve been here before, just take that past Grimsbys to the LynnFells Parkway and out to the high school. Stop at the knoll for another water stop.

From there take the LynnFells straight out to Breakheart. Grab a sip at the water stop there and then loop Breakheart. Another sip and back the way you came, all the way to the knoll. Yet another sip and off to Grimsby’s, left down Wyoming, and left on Main to finish up.

If you’re running the shorter route, start out with everyone through the first two water stops. On your way out to Breakheart take your usual turn at Main St in Saugus and back down Howard St. Finish up down Main St for just over 11 miles!

Waterstops: If Brian W. and Sue C. are still in to help this week, I think we’ll be all set.  If anything changes I’ll use this blog to beg for help.

Who is in for a beautiful course? Water views. Off road peace and quiet (if you ignore the huffing and puffing up the hills).


Week 10 – Serving up the 20-Mile “Blue Plate Special”

Thursday, September 12th, 2013

the 20-Mile Blue Plate Special is being served up for the hungry runner, but if you’re not feeling like you need that many miles, you can order one of the smaller bites on the menu (which is to run the 10.2 mile route or whatever portion of the route you fancy).

This week is actually the 20 mile route you expected last week. With so many influences pulling us in different directions last week, we decided that the Mystic Lakes route is just too good to miss out on.

Since our wise SLR Jim Carson gives such great guidance, I’m recycling his post related to this course a couple years ago:

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.

Nancy is coordinating water stops this week – she’ll need some helpers. Please weigh in if you can offer water stop support.

ROLL CALL!!!!!! Who is in?

See you Sunday!


Week 9 – A Little Change of Plans

Friday, September 6th, 2013

As we get into September things get a little confusing for the Sunday Long Run. For one thing, I won’t be here for the remaining September Sundays. Also this week is the Lake Winnipesaukee Relay so there won’t be many people around. On top of that everyone’s schedules are slightly different because everyone isn’t running Baystate. This leaves us with a lot of variations of routes to run.

When I first put together the fall plan years ago I tried to deconflict the 20 miler run with Lake Winnipesaukee and the Victorian Fair. Well, since they moved Lake Winnie and the fair falls somewhat early this year, the 20 miler actually hits both. Ugh. With the few water stop helpers available and the few runners we’ll have running, I suggest we switch the weeks, so this weekend is the 16 miler route and next week is the 20 miler route. If you would like to run 20 miles this weekend there’s nothing stopping you, just get to Brueggers early and run your favorite 4 miles before the 8PM start. We’ll have water stop supplies at the start (behind Brueggers) for those that do this.

Starting at 8AM we’ll run the 16 mile route for Week 10. This helps because there is only one water stop. From Brueggers run up Main Street into Wakefield to Nick’s Pizza. Water Stop 1.

After that we’ll be head up to Lake Quannapowitt along Main Street and circle the lake by following Lowell Street turning left through the Converse parking lot over to North Street. Left on Main Street will get you on North Street which you follow all the way back to Nick’s Pizza. Water Stop 2.

If you want to run a 10 mile short route, head back along Main Street to Brueggers and you’ll be done. Longer runners head down Nahant Street over to Wakefield High School. Head up towards the Voc and into Breakheart from this side. Run around the outer loop in whatever direction you please and stop for a sip of water at the water fountain at the park headquarters (Unofficial Water Stop) then continue around and pop back out on the Wakefield side at the Voc, back down Nahant to Nick’s Pizza Water Stop 3 1/2.

From there you head back to Melrose along Main Street and finish up your run at Breuggers.

After the run grab a cup of coffee at Brueggers and wander out along the Victorian Fair’s EMARC race and help Brian Slater out by course marshalling at the corner of Main and Grove, or Grove and Dell, of Dell and E Foster.

Water Stops. Audrey and Jessi graciously stepped up to take the water stop buckets from me. They’ll coordinate so one car is at Nick’s and the other is behind Brueggers. You’ll need most of the supplies at Nick’s, not so much at Brueggers.

Next Tuesday they’ll give the buckets off to somebody else. Please step up and take them, remember if nobody volunteers to host the stop, there won’t be any water where you need it!

Next week I suggest you do the 20 mile route and people can tailor it to their distance needs.

If you’re in, let us know so we can make sure we have the right amount of supplies. If you’re out, good luck at Lake Winnie!