Archive for September, 2014

Week 12 – A bunch of short runs strung together

Friday, September 26th, 2014

Our long route this week is the longest we offer – 22 miles. Our half route is, well, half that – 11 miles.

We do have some distance to cover this Sunday, but let’s not overwhelm ourselves. For those running the Full, you have 6 shorter runs. At the end of the first 5 shorter runs, you’ll be awarded a paper cup and something to fill it, and given the choice of sugary, salty or medicinal items. Basically, it’s a little prize at each brief stop between your runs! You might even get a bonus compliment or pep talk if you qualify for one.

Seriously, though. I don’t want to downplay what we’ll be up to on Sunday. You’ve got some miles in front of you and some prep today and tomorrow. 1) get some sleep, especially Friday night. 2) eat foods that will properly fuel you – protein, healthy carbs, and enough salt. 3) Sip away at your water throughout the day Friday and Saturday and get yourself hydrated. 4) chose your apparel wisely – socks, singlets, shorts, underthings… dress for a warm run. 5) keep perspective – remind yourself that you’ve built up to this and you’re totally capable.

PLEASE ACQUAINT YOURSELVES WITH THE ROUTE! Click on the maps and know where you’re going. We’ll go over it BRIEFLY (and not that well) before the run, but for your own good, check out the map.

I think I’m all set with water stop volunteers. I have Jeff R. and Erin F. and myself (Thank you, Mr. Rushton and Mrs. Fopiano).

So, who is signing up for the fun this week? Please speak up and if there is anything, within reason, you’d like to ‘win’ (ingest) at the water stops, state it in the comment. I won’t make any guarantees I can get it in time, but I understand the importance of using this run as a formal dress rehearsal for race day and will do my best to support you.

What crazy, awesome runners are in?

Week 11 – Breakheart again? You’re welcome.

Friday, September 19th, 2014

11 weeks in already. Time passes quickly when you’re busy figuring out all of the details of how to manage miles and hills and chafing, deciding whether GU or a banana is your miracle food, looking for answers that will carry you best to the finish line.

This week’s run is nearly 18 miles with a pretty pond and a few hills. No problemo. 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!

I think we’re good with water stop support with Don and Mikey and myself.

Who wants in? ROLL CALL!!

Week 10 – Lollipops and Gatorade Dreams

Friday, September 12th, 2014

Last week brought us a 7am start time and a lovely 20 miles. It was sublime for some, but perhaps this week will feel more like a treat to the soles.

Long run route = 16 miles. Shorter long route = 8 miles. No early start (yay!), unless you truly want to get yourself out ahead of the crowd. Please take a look a the maps and know where you’re going. The good news is that with one water stop that you’ll keep revisiting the course is pretty simple and looks like one or two lollipops, depending on the mileage.

The plan is this: at 8am we’ll converge in front of Bruegger’s, as usual. Everyone will run up Main Street into Wakefield to Nick’s Pizza – water stop #1.

16 Milers – after that we’ll be heading to Lake Quannapowitt along Main Street and circle the lake by following Lowell Street, turning left through the Converse parking lot over to North Ave. Follow North Ave. all the way back to Nick’s Pizza where there will be a brief but refreshing tailgating party, a.k.a. waterstop #2.

From there you’ll 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 chose and stop for a sip of water at the water fountain at park headquarters (this is a well-placed but unofficial waterstop – you will not get spoiled with candy or GU here). Continue around the outer loop and pop back out of the Wakefield side of the Voc and backtrack down Nahant to Nick’s Pizza where the tailgating party is still going on.  Grab a sip and/or a snack and head back down Main Street to Bruegger’s.

8 Milers – once you hit the first waterstop at Nick’s Pizza you’ll begin a small loop that runs up Main Street to Church Street, take a left along Church Street and run to the intersection with North Ave. Take a left onto North Ave, back to the water stop, a quick sip and then head back to Bruegger’s the way you came.

I think we’re all set with Don K. offering to be our water stop this week (Thanks, Don!).

That’s the plan, my speedy friends. Who is in? ROLL CALL!!!

Week 9 – Starting an Hour Earlier, 7AM at Brueggers!!!

Saturday, September 6th, 2014

Sorry for the late notice, I was out of town all week and I didn’t realize the Victorian Fair was this week. So why the hour earlier. Two reasons, Main St will get crowded Sunday so this gives us a chance to finish up our run without so many witnesses. Two, the Victorian Fair features the Emarc 5K. If we can get a few people finished up early they can help volunteer for that race. Now typically I change the route for the run to make this all a bit easier and allow the shorter distance runners an option to still start at 8 but because this year it coincides with the 20 miler I can’t figure out a way to do that. I tried, its too complicated so we’re sticking with the originally posted route. You can still start any time between 7 and 8 because the water stops you’ll use aren’t moving.

Starting at 7 AM we’ll be heading out from Brueggers down Main Street, which will be closed and people will be putting up tents so run along the side walk or in the street, whichever way is easiest. Head to a right on West Wyoming, up past Grimsby’s to a right at Spot Pond. Go past the Zoo, past Friendly’s, past the on ramp to I93N onto Park Street in Stoneham. You’ll hit a set of lights, take a left on Marble which becomes Forest as you go over I93. On the other side you’ll see Eugene Street and Water Stop 1.

From this water stop you’ll continue on Forest Street in Winchester until you get to Highland Ave, there’ll be a blue H hospital sign to tell you when to turn. Up a hill, past Winchester Hospital and continue on Highland. If you’re running short you’ll take a right on Eaton Street (There will be a little park where you turn). Run down a hill, turn right at the bottom onto Washington Street. Continue to take a right on Forest Street at the Gingerbread Construction Company and run up some hills back to the water stop. From there you head back exactly how you came, Forest to Marble, right on Park, past Friendly’s and the Zoo, left on Pond St to bring you back past Grimsbys along West Wyoming to Main and home to Brueggers! 10 miles, just like that.

Meanwhile you long long runners are continuing down Highland Ave and hit a 5-way intersection, continue straight through staying on Highland. Eventually you’ll hit Water Stop 2. After this water stop you’ll start hitting some new territory for this season’s training. Go left onto Main Street/RT38 into Medford. Cross over to the right side of the wide road as you’ll be taking a right at the Oak Grove Cemetery onto Playstead Road. You’ll run along the cemetery, past a soccer field and along the commuter rail line until you hit High Street/RT60. Take a right, crossing over the railroad tracks. On your left is a Dunkin Donuts which is very accommodating to runners that need a restroom. Continue on High Street. Note there is a spot where the road forks, stay to your left to stay on High Street. You’ll eventually come to a little traffic circle at the Mystic River and Arlington. Go right onto the Mystic Valley Parkway (Don’t go over the bridge into Arlington, we’ll never find you!). Enjoy the run along the Mystic Lakes all the way to the end of the street. Turn right onto Bacon Street, pass under the railroad tracks, and turn left onto the Mystic Valley Parkway. Along the right side of this street you’ll see a sports field and Water Stop 3.

After his stop you’ll continue through a set of lights and then the next set will be Washington Street. Turn left onto Washington and cross over to the right side of the road. You’ll hit another 5-way intersection where you’ll cross the street and stay to the right to keep onto Washington. Washington will take you to the Gingerbread Construction Company where you take a right onto Forest Street. Up the hills and on to Water Stop 4 (which will look a lot like Water Stop 1… because it is).

Leave the water stop and cross over I93 and take a right onto Park Street. This will bring you to Friendly’s. Take a right onto Main Street/Rt28 in Stoneham. Run the back side of Spot Pond turning onto Elm Street and up to the rotary by the Flynn hockey Rink. Go right onto Highland Ave in Medford and find Water Stop 5. The last water stop!!

Leaving the water stop run on Highland Ave until you get to the Fellsway East. All the way down to the traffic circle where they sell the newspapers. Turn left there and run the Fellsway East to Grimsbys. Turn right onto West Wyoming and you’ll find yourself back on Main Street… this one is in Melrose where a left turn brings you back to Brueggers with 20 miles behind you!

Water stops. I think Nancy and/or Lois will be parking at Eugene so they can be that water stop. I’ll handle water stops 2 and 3. I may make it to water stop 5 before the speediest of runners, but one more helper might make that less stressful. Anyone.

See you tomorrow at 7AM! Roll Call! Who’s in?