Monday, October 27, 2014

Chatfield Hollow 10K - Race Recap

Yes, yes, yes, I signed up for the Chatfield Hollow 20K and the headline says 10K...  read on...

When Crutch, Don, and I ran the loop last Saturday, I KNEW I could do this successfully once, not twice.  OK I could do it twice; I wouldn't enjoy the second loop.  Enjoyment = success (in this case). 

I had one goal, to beat the time (elapsed to compare apples to apples) we ran this last week.  Time to beat: 1:47:21.  I crossed the finish in 1:34:23 per my space watch, goal met.  Official results 1:32:00 for me and the boys were 1:34 (huh... we all crossed at the same time. Guess girls get a 2 minute handicap?)  here.

This past weekend was my one year anniversary of the MCM debacle, I really needed a success to round out the end of a year really trying to focus on racing as racing and running as running and improving as a runner and whining and bitching less.

I eMailed the RD and dropped to the 10K.  

Don signed up and then convinced Steve to join and he convinced Dave to join.  They were all for running with me. Sure...  They will be off and gone before the second hill.  I promised if they stuck around I'd try not to bitch too much.  They also promised to not whine too much.  Deal!

We all met up at the start.  Crutch, running the 50K (5 laps of hell) was a bit late.  He looked a little worse for wear, however keeping his usual smile and ever positive demeanor.  Faith holding true to the 20K she signed up for.  Crazy, and she ran the course a month earlier!!

We all lined up and the gun went off and we were off.  Running, of course, and then the trail narrowed and the walking happened.  Eventually the heard got to the first endless climb. 

Photo Credit:  Trail 2 Trail Series - and the stairs never seemed to end until the ledge happened
The four amigos stuck together through this, letting me lead, huh...  We got to the top, finally, it was a never ending climb and what made me decide to bail on the 20K, I could not wrap my mind around climbing that after 10K.  A bit of weaving in and out of a pack of slower runners (always a surprise when I get to pass someone!) and we were off and running.  No wait, another climb…

Elevation Profile - 1000 gain highest 437

Not quite a mile into the course there is a hard right, because going straight will put you on the return course.  Being a person who, occasionally, gets lost in a circle I did check the website for how the trail was marked.  It was stated orange flags were to the left unless there was a turn to the right then it would be flagged AND marked with ribbon.  

I also remembered this turn from running the course with Crutch and Don last week.  

Woah, there was a right turn everyone (including Dave, Don, and Steve) ahead was missing; I shouted they were off course.  Bombed down the hill, I’m starting to get more comfortable picking the pace up downhill, and on to a fire road.  Ahhhh, a nice break.   There was a gal hot on my heels, and staying there.  We chatted, exchanged names and waited for the boys to catch up.  This was Holly’s first trail race.  She picked a dilly.  

Remembering there was a sharp left off the fire road taking us back to single track, I kept an eye out for the orange flag.  So thankful for the run the weekend before giving me some semblance of bearings on the course.  I shouted to the boys who had left Holly and I in the dust,  LEFT.  

Entering mile 3, it was nice to be back on the single track, and yes, it was up hill, time to power hike!!!  Holly intermingled with the pack for a while and eventually dropped back on a steeper decent.

The rest of the run was fairly uneventful. Climbing up hills and running down hills, scaling some rocks in a few places, and keeping a careful eye out for slippery spots!  I learned to say “I’m OK” (just like my Nephew) when I would slip or nearly trip or yell oops.  Just call me grace!   Fortunately I did not actually fall, it’s been a while I’m sure there will be one soon.  Dave took a digger in the first mile and Steve in the last mile.  Don won't fess up to any diggers!!

The Four Amigos
Beth Don Steve Dave

The course is beautiful, despite the unending climbs there are very runnable parts we gained some speed on.  The boys stuck to their word and didn’t leave me behind.  We all took turns leading the pack and that was fun.

Would I run this again?  Yes.  It was a beautiful place to run and the Trail 2 Trail folks put on a nice event.  The best part was running with friends in a beautiful place. 

Beth with big thanks to Suzan, Susan, and Denise let me run around in the woods with their husbands!!!

Sunday, October 26, 2014

And so ends another week....

Weekly Log:  10/20 - 10/26


Monday -  My Noon meeting was cancelled, giving me enough time for a run before an afternoon teleconference listening to vendors tell us how great they are and why they should win the business.  It was a perfect fall day for a run and the run felt great.  Ran in to Steve at the end of Jupiter Point and he volunteered he and Dave were doing speed work on Tuesday, come on down to the EB Lot L.   TRX was good, nice to be back to the routine.  Gizzy got a nice long walk.  He was quite perky!!  

Tuesday - I did commit to speed work, so I met up with Dave and Steve and we ran around the parking lot.  Jog a lap run hard a lap etc... a lap registered at 0.3 miles on my GPS.  Results are here.  Dave said 4 laps, and on the recovery lap he said one more.  I do believe I told both of them I hated them and ran the lap.  They ran me back to work.  Probably to make sure I didn't curl up in a ball in the gutter and cry!  

Wednesday - Windy run, seems we are back to the winter winds on Wednesday. Running downhill back to campus in the wind was even tough.  All in all felt like a good run.  Time to get used to the wind!!

Thursday - Easy 5K with Ro, although she claims I pushed her a bit.

Friday - Time to try a progression run.  Figured I'd take 10 seconds off my mile 1 for mile 2 and 10 off 2 for 3.  I have no idea how these things work.  I felt like crap and wanted to scream up the hill back towards work.  Up hill into the wind sucked, and even down hill into the wind sucks.  I was happy with the run when it was done, that's the right way to feel, right?  Quick after dinner walk with Giz.

Saturday - Rest day and a quick walk with Giz.

Sunday - Chatfield Hollow 10K  write up to come.

Beth, I really need to come up with creative titles!!

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

Beth, establishing a baseline. 

Monday, October 20, 2014

Weekly Log 10/13 – 10/19

A recovery week of sorts.


Monday – recovery run?  Everything worked after the ½ my knees were a little angry with me going downhill, this seemed to be a theme for the week.

Tuesday – Double – walked with Ro at lunch, grabbed a couple mile run down to EB and back – knees not happy with those hills, ouch.  After work I ran with Faith for the first time. We met up at Bluff Point for an easy run and it was an easy run.  Faith talked most of the time, we got the basics covered, same age group, no kids, been running about the same length of time.  She is more domestic than me so we talked a lot about food.  I think I was inspired because I went home and made biscuits!  Dave bought the buttermilk for them the day before and when I was rummaging around in the fridge looking for something to eat I spied it and remembered that I was supposed to make this new recipe, so I did.  Buttermilk biscuits from Smitten Kitchen super easy to make and tasted yummy!  Great with honey!

Wednesday – Pretty peppy lunch run, knees not happy.

Thursday – Rain – I did nothing… nada… zilch…  my knees were quite happy about this, so we will call this a rest day?

Friday – Jennifer and I were meeting at the beach for 10 miles, her last long run before Marine Corps Marathon – her first marathon.   She was touch and go if she was going to run it or not, after a horrible August it seemed like no, then yes, then no, and finally yes.  The first mile was ouchy on my knee and Jennifer was lively, mile 2 I didn’t feel the knee and we were zipping along Ocean Drive.  Mile 3 things started to crumble.  Jennifer let out a blood curdling scream and took off like a crazy person arms flailing.  I jumped a mile in the air the gardener in the lawn yelled “Is everything OK.”    She saw a snake.   All was OK the gardener and I recovered from our mini coronaries and Jennifer went on to explain why she has a fear of snakes.  It is COMPLTELY justified, not a girly thing.  Imagine wondering why the bannister in the house feels funny and looking over and seeing a Black Snake… we walked a bit this mile…  I think it was deserved.  Mile 4 was pretty even and uneventful.  Mile 5 met us with another snake and a little bit of walking.  Mile 6 the third and final snake propelling us into mile 7 where we both called it a day for the run!  Even with the walking we kept a good pace!

Saturday – Met up with Crutch and Don to run Chatfield Hollow.  Holy hills… beautiful beautiful course just 1000 feet of elevation over 6.2 miles?  I think I will drop down to the 10K, especially if it is going to rain leading up to and on Sunday.  Call me a wimp, not concerned.  Footing was iffy in parts when it was dry.  I can’t imagine what it will be like with the rocks greasy from days of rain and covered in leaves?  My knee felt great after this run.  Go figure.   After I got home and iced I took Gizzy out for a hike in Pequot Woods.  He was psyched to get in the car and then even more psyched to go someplace new.  Love the expressions on that old guys mug.  I’d of loved to let him off the leash but his hearing is bad, on top of the fact he plain ignores me when he is busy.  Even with the oppressive leash he seemed fine taking in all the new smells. 

Sunday I did domestic chores (considered cleaning my car, um, no, it can stay a disaster – ha ha Mike B) and went shopping.  Home in time to rush off to Yoga class.  One of the guys Dave rides with (Bill B – Chris G you work with him!) his wife is training to be a yoga instructor and has to do a certain number of hours with students.   This was my second class with Dace and it was great!   I have been away from yoga for too long and hopefully this will reignite that fire.   And what happens in yoga stays in yoga so I enjoyed Bill telling tales on my husband very much!!  If you are interested let me know 4 p.m. on Sundays in North Kingstown, I am sure Dace would welcome more students.


Beth, so not on top of this blogging thing lately… 

Tuesday, October 14, 2014

Newport 1/2 Marathon - Recap

The third year I have run this race.  2012 recap 2013 recap   Now I'm seeing the benefit of this blog and seeing what I wrote and remembering where I was in my life at these points.  Fascinating...

A lot has stayed the same and as much has changed.  The adrenaline/excitement of training for my first marathon was mostly what fueled 2012.  The exhaustion of a too hectic race schedule and over commitment de-fueled 2013.  I vowed to do things differently in 2014 and I have.  Still I was not looking forward to this race.  I had it as Registered - Debating on my race list.  My very short race list ( I learned a lesson - who knew at my advancing age I could learn a lesson???).

2012 was a success because it was a PR for me.  I remember that race and I was so high on everything.  I miss that feeling, I really do.  I kinda wish I was that thin again too...  it was too thin as I'm reminded...

2013 was a success because we got Nicole a PR 2:29, a 7 minute PR.  I read the recap and remember how I was really feeling... I'm glad for what I captured in writing.

2014 I did not follow my training plan to PR.  Nicole and I talked, I so wanted to bail on this race.  I missed the RI triple crown of road and trail racing due to that stupid cruise so really what was the point of any of this.  Nicole talked about wanting to PR, her PR is 2:24, we got that together in Providence.  Did I think I could pace her for a 2:20.  Sure.  I’ll give it a shot.  We have to stay under a 10:41 pace.  As the miles ticked off, I let her know if we were good or off pace, we had a couple quick miles and more than a couple slow miles, and I pushed her the last three miles, really pushing her last mile to get to the finish line.

Good training plan / Poor execution

I think the phrase “so what is the point of any of this” really sums this race up for me.

Going into this third Newport ½ I wasn't trained for what I wanted to do, sub 2 hours, I was even doubting my ability to even run 13.1 miles.  If it wasn't for Nicole really wanting a PR I may have turned off the alarm Sunday a.m. and went back to sleep.  It really helped me to have some needing me to help them. 

Getting to the race start was its usual mess of traffic.  People panicking that the last bus was really going to leave at 6:45 and they wouldn’t get to the race.  We got on a bus before 7 and they were lined up to get runners to the start.  Trip to the porta pottie, remembering that last year the ones at the end had the shortest lines, and again they did people we passed in line getting to the tail end of the line of porta potties were probably still in line.  The herd mentality is a funny thing.  We got lined up, kicking ourselves for no throw away gloves, all the while knowing we’d be warm by the end of the first mile.  Wondering if long sleeves were going to be a mistake.

Mile 1 I kept slowing Nicole down.  We talked a bit, not really all that much.  Mostly just take it easy the first couple miles, there will be middle miles you are thankful for the rest now.  Dead on with pacing.  10:41

Mile 2 we went fast, there was a good bit of downhill, I figured it would be ok we could cash in on these seconds later.

Mile 3 & 4 we slowed up a bit, still putting a little aside for the slower miles in the middle.

Mile 5 is what did us in last year, we stopped at the porta pottie, lost 6 minutes. 10"33, perfect.

Mile 6 probably the less scenic 10:23, still a little fast.  But I know how the end went last year...  I debated putting more or less in the bank.

Mile 7 – 10  along the ocean, we fought some wind and some rolling hills.  At this point we drafted a bit.  We should have done more to conserve energy (don’t worry, the people we drafted off of finished ahead of us).  Nicole was starting to really feel the pain of the pace.   Some spectator said you only have 2 miles to go, when we really had 2.8.  This was not nice, don’t do that people, please. 10:46 / 10:22 / 10:41 / 10:58   Yes, we lost a little ground.  I really need to learn to do math in my head.  

Mile 11 – 13.1 When we hit 10 I said it’s a 5K left, we were at 1:45.  35 minutes it was going to be tough to bring up our pace much over this last 5K.  Nicole was willing to endure the pain and I pushed her, mile 11  10:52 mile 12 10:51 mile 13 10:00 mile 0.1 9:02 mile  (negative splits at the hardest part). We had the last big downhill for mile 13 bringing down the pace, I banked on this too much, and I also banked on the spectators staying out of the race course.  Silly me.  I pulled Nicole with “COME ON NICOLE” through the last 0.3 miles.  She did it.  The absolute look of relief as she crossed that finish line and finally looked at her space watch 2:19!!!!!!!!!!!  We both screamed!  She did it!!  We did it!!

Nicole was so quiet the whole run, this was so odd.  I feared not running much with her had become a problem.   No she was focused and concentrating.


And for Christy -- We passed a Team Beef singlet in the last mile of the race.  I thought of you!

We did it!  Another 1/2 with Nicole and another PR for Nicole!!!  The point I questioned, well, the point is success.  Seeing Nicole so happy and thrilled was all I needed.

Beth, long sleeves were not a mistake!

PS - Ocean's Run in March will be my sub 2 race. Just putting that out there.  Speed work starts Tuesday, in earnest....

Weekly Log 10/6 – 10/12





6.1 (double)






ZERO - blargh

Monday I was sick – I think I may have over done it over the weekend and crashed around 8 on Sunday night waking up around 7 for the sole purpose of calling in sick.  I couldn’t even pull myself together enough to even go into work to spread around what I’m told is my 3 illness this year.  Dave keeps track and commented that this is the most unhealthy I have been in the last 17 years.   I keep thinking I never get sick, and am reminded of the Spring cold, the Summer cold, and now the Autumn cold.  Huh… who knew?  Obviously I’ve blocked all this out. 

Speaking of blocking things out, thoughts of another ultra are dancing around in my head as well as a road marathon.  Not until next fall.   The rational me is busy running around my brain stomping out these thoughts. 

After sleeping till noon I took Jax on a walk, and then back to sleep and I took Giz and Gus on a walk.  The fresh air felt good and I felt closer to human on Tuesday.

Tuesday I had a nice run, my nose was running like crazy, not even anything good enough for a decent snot rocket, blargh.  Gizzy and I had a nice walk and I was ready for bed.

Wednesday  Easy run.  My mom was supposed to call with her CT results.  She never called.

Thursday Double I waited until 10 to call my mom.  My dad answered her phone, interesting.  I asked “what’s up” and he said “talk to your mother”  She was busy ironing curtains and what did I need.  Um CT results?  Oh yeah, they called Tuesday everything is fine.  Beth, this is year 5 of NED (no evidence of disease), 7 years post diagnosis, I think you’d be calmer by now.  Um, no, now it is time to panic! 

She went on to explain her oncologist has some concerns about my father’s COPD and he needs to go in for some cardiac testing.  Versus the pulmonary testing he had before diagnosis a year ago.   So she was a little miffed she wasn’t the focus of the appointment. 

Makes sense the primary care giver gets left behind and their health tends to suffer as a result.  I’ve never met Dr. K I have read and heard wonderful things about him.  This really sealed the deal for me.

I texted Dave with the good news and I went out for a celebratory run.

Text from Thursday 10/9/2014

Thursday night was also the Sneekers run, Ro and I ran, her first run back from her vacation to Italy. 

Friday I picked up my Newport ½ Bib and met up with my cousin Kate in Newport for dinner and drinks.  She spent the last month on a boat in the Atlantic doing seismic testing as part of her Geology PhD program.  She was happy to see a new person, being with the same people for a month is a little tedious!  Saturday she was on her way back home, hoping her boyfriend cleaned the cat box at least once a week while she was gone.

Saturday   I went to the Hartford Marathon to cheer on running friends.  It was raining.  I could have bailed, it was cold and raining.  I wasn’t going to do such a thing.  There was a spot on the out and back where I could cheer at mile 14 and mile 20.  It was PERFECT!  I got there just as the first wheel chair passed by and in a few minutes the pace car and Matt Pelletier leading a pack of three.  And 30 people later I spied a Gazelle working hard and looking strong and sort of miserable, he eeked out a smile hearing his name cheered.  Next up were Mike B and Shara.  Nice hand slap as they passed looking strong and sort of miserable.  Along came Don.  I totally forgot he ran the center line, so no pictures, damn.  I switched to the other side of the road knowing Matt would be on his way back as well as get out of the throngs of crowds now showing up with their obnoxious golf umbrellas blocking my view all the while keeping an eye out for Faith. 

Crossing the street to Mile 20, i was only Matt and one other person,  Gazelle not losing any steam, flashed a HUGE smile.  He knew he was killing his race.  Animal!!

Shara was trucking along, I commented she finally ditched Mike B, that garnered a smile.  Looking good as always!

Mike B a few minutes later, he was hurting.  Still wanted a hand slap and I reminded him this is where the race starts go get ‘em.

At this point I was soaked and so ready to be warm and home.  I bailed on Don and Faith… sorry guys!!!

As I drove home, I watched the texts come in with the times.  Three BQ times!  Don PRd 20 minutes on his Vermont Marathon in May (missed BQ by 13 minutes).  Faith, well I’m just getting to know her…  this was her 5th and not her last marathon from the FB posts it was a good race for her.

So happy to offer some support for such miserable race conditions.

Sunday  I had my own race to run,  Newport ½ Marathon.  Link here

Beth and another week down.... plod plod plod

Friday, October 3, 2014

Weekly Recap - 9/29 - 10/5 - Final

Monday - TRX / Run 3 / Walk 2.9

My knitting buddy is on vacation for this Monday and the next two, so I took advantage of the time and ran after a bunch of midday meetings.  It was a nice run, appropriately titled recovering from death by powerpoint.  Who needs 100 slides to make a point?  A person who doesn't have a point to make?  My legs felt peppy, and I went with it.  

TRX is back up to 4!  Lots of stories and laughs!

Gizzy got his walk, after dinner he was right in my face whining.  He is spoiled, I know this, he knows he gets what he wants if his argument is high pitched enough.  He was full of energy, the cooler evenings definitely help!  Nice way to spend a bit over an hour with my curmudgeon.

Tuesday - Run 13.1 (3.1 with Ro / 10 with Jennifer)

Ro wanted to run before she left for a week in Italy with her boyfriend.  Sure!  We had a peppy run, it was supposed to be easy.  Jennifer and I were supposed to run 10 on Wednesday that got all switched around due to schedule conflicts with Jennifer.  I figured I'd be ok for the longer run in the evening.  

Damn work, I couldn't get out till 5, and was committed to staying until the meeting ended, someone trying to pull a fast one I'm having no part of.   Fortunately, Jennifer lives near a bike path.  I've never run on a bike path and with darkness falling so early I thought it might be better than Narragansett or Westerly and dodging drivers.  So off we went.  2.5 out and back one way and 2.5 out and back the other way.  What a great place to run.  Even smooth pretty flat.  When we finished the first 5 Jennifer asked if we could slow down a bit, she's never run 5 miles in under 50 minute.  Oh sorry.  I made sure she was 1/2 a stride ahead of me on the second half of the run!!  Had a really good run in the dark and the drizzle and rain.

It was after 8 by the time we were done, Gizzy did not get his walk, not even around the block...  

Wednesday - Run 3 / Walk 1.8

It was raining and not looking like stopping, and I got a cadence sensor for my shoe I was interested in trying it out.  I haven't a clue what it is telling me, yet...  Went out for a run to the beach and back.  The rain was lovely, I do like running in the rain.  Sorry for those who don't or suffer bloody consequences.  

The rain subsided as the day progressed and Gizzy and I got out for a quick walk before I wanted to curl up and go to sleep.  I was exhausted, imagine that... I think the miles on Tuesday played a part.  I was nearly asleep when Dave got home around 9...  

Thursday - Run 5 / Walk 3.4

Still cloudy and rainy, I went out for an easy run, according to my pace this is 10/10:30.  Glancing at my watch I was in the 9:30s huh.  Well it feels good so I'll just go with it.  I lost a bit of speed on the hill on Meech, however picked it back up on the downhill back to campus. I've had a week of quicker paces, I'll take it and, ahem, run with it.   Maybe now is time to work on my speed since I seem to have some.

Gizzy was a dog on a mission, trash night and all there were good smells to be had.  I was surprised to see how far we had walked when I checked Map My Walk.  The changing weather is good for the old guy.  He barely had any recovery time once we got home.  In the warmer weather, even with low humidity he was taking 20 or more minutes to recover.  He was all cooled down in less than 5 minutes. 

Friday - Run 4 / Walk 2

I was supposed to run with Jennifer after work.  Cancelled.  So I went out for a lunch time run.  Figured I'd run out to Jupiter Point and back (the Mike B route) and when I hit Thomas I thought, what the hell, lets turn left and see what power I have to attack "the bitch" (a steep hill)  took me 2:30 not close to a PR of 2:24  it is a 100 foot climb over 0.2 miles.  Aptly named "the bitch", eh?

Cleaned up some lingering projects, started my "to do" list for next week and called it a day to go home and nap.  My favorite part of the week, Friday afternoon naps when I can get them.

Gizzy was forced to walk with Gus tonight.  He was not pleased and he may also have been a little worn out from yesterday.  He was done a mile in and pulled towards home.  Yes, he is in charge.

Saturday - Run 5.5

Hoping to get out before the rain came I met Nicole and Kathy in Narragansett to run 3 with Mary and then finish up the last 2 or so with Nicole.  It was a little misty some rain.  All in all good company.  Looking forward to running Newport 1/2 with Nicole and work on a new PR for her.  I just want to run the beautiful course.  

Sunday -  30 Bike 

Debbie came down from Peabody, MA to ride today.  Figured I'd show her the coastal sights of Westerly and then head out to Mystic.  Unfortunately her mother took a bad fall and we had to cut our ride short.  Her mother is fine, a little PT and she will be good as new.  It was fun to show off the beautiful area I live in. 

Beth, feeling a little pep in her step!

Published 10/3
Final 10/5

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Wordless Wednesday

Q1 - Q3 Stats:

Beth, feeling normal with a 100 mile month.