Sunday, July 27, 2014

Eagle Creek Trail Run - Here I come - Ready or not.

JRC - Group Run - 9.2 miles - 7-27-2014 - Details

Today was the last group run for me before my annual trip to Indiana for a run in the woods. While I didn't get as much trail running experience this year, I think I am better trained overall than last year. At this point I am most concerned with proper fueling and not going out to fast.

As for today's run, I didn't realize it until I arrived at JRC this morning that our hostess's for the morning run, Jackie and Loretta, had planned a 10 mile challenge for our enjoyment. They had been out marking the course and setting up water stops.

We had a good group of runners with many of us targeting fall marathons. In addition to Jenn training for New York and Paulo targeting Savannah there was another Chicago runner, two fellas training for the Marine Corps marathon and a young lady planning on running the Wineglass marathon in Napa Valley.

The runners stayed close enough to each other that no one was ever alone for to long and the water stops were heaven. Jackie and Loretta did such a fantastic job that I felt it only right to accompany Jackie to Starbucks for breakfast after the run. Apparently I was laughing so hard at a couple of her jokes that I didn't hear my phone ring when the Mrs. called to check on me. She knew I had stopped running over an hour earlier thanks to Garmin's new Live Track feature. I did catch her 2nd call as I pulled into the neighborhood after breakfast. No harm, no foul.

My next post will come after the Eagle Creek Trail Half Marathon next Saturday. Since I had such a miserable showing at this event last year I expect to easily beat last years time on the course.

Sunday, July 20, 2014

Sgt. Jones visits JRC Group Run - 14 miles - 7-20-2014 - Details

Sgt. Jones visits JRC Group Run - 14 miles - 7-20-2014 - Details

As the runners were assembling for the Jacksonville Running Company group run at Tapestry Park this morning a squad car from the Jacksonville Sheriff's office drove slowly through the upscale shopping area. The car turned around at the end of the street headed back to the west where the runners were gathering. He came to a stop across from the running group  and after a minute or so exited his car and walked slowly toward the runners. 

The good news is the runners didn't disperse. I believe not even one headed for the bushes. In fact, most wondered what had caused this impromptu visit from one of Jacksonville's finest. It didn't take long to figure out that the visit from Sgt. Jones was social when he talked about running in formation. Something we are not very good at. Turns out he was responding to an alarm call from a jewelry store in the center and when he found things quiet at the jewelry store he stopped by to chat. He was even happy to be part of our group photo from the morning which I will insert below. 

I have ended up with a couple marathon training partners from this group. On the left in a red tank top is a young lady named Jenn that will be running the New York City marathon on November 2nd as part of Fred's Team to raise money for cancer research at Sloan Kettering. The Fred is Fred LeBow long time president of the New York Road Runner's who passed away from cancer. The charity is important to Jenn because she lost her father to cancer. 

Second from the right end in a black shirt is Paulo who will be running the Savannah Rock & Roll marathon on November 8th.

I was able to convince Jenn and Paulo that if we took Galloway walk breaks that 16 miles would be a breeze. Really. I think both were planning on 10 to 12 miles this morning. They both were game so off we went heading in the direction of the University of North Florida. Our intervals were 5 minute run segments and 45 second walk segments. Even though we started at 6:30 AM the sun was up before we got to UNF and it was HOT.

Since they were both planning on something shorter I tried to make sure we didn't get to crazy. I planned to get back to Tapestry Park well before the 16 mile target with the idea being that we could stop if we felt like it or add a mile or so to hit 16 if we felt up to the challenge. 

Not long after 12 miles we took a break at the CVS for cold water and a few minutes of A/C. This was just enough of a break to perk us up for the last couple of miles. As we approached Tapestry Park and 14 miles of running we all decided that 14 miles was plenty for today. We sat by the cooler that had been left out for us and enjoyed some ice cold water in the shade before departing. We discussed our next run and concluded that we will probably shoot for that 16 miles again in a couple weeks.

Sunday, July 6, 2014

Tour of UNF - 15 Miles - 7-6-2014 - Garmin Connect - Details

Tour of UNF - 15 Miles - 7-6-2014 - Garmin Connect - Details

With the temperature in the low 70's this morning I was hopeful that I could finally get a long run in past the 12 mile distance that I seem to have been stuck at the past several weeks. I met the group at Jacksonville Running Company at 6:30 AM and several of us headed toward St. Johns Town Center and the familiar Cow Tunnel under the JTB expressway. After a loop through the tunnel I broke off from the pack and turned toward UNF.

After leaving the group and taking a short restroom and water fountain break at the 24 hour CVS, I switched to the run-walk-run method with the help of a new GymBoss interval timer. My previous GymBoss just stopped working while on a recent run. Somehow during the run it bounced off the sidewalk and was never the same. Within a half mile of turning on my new timer I un-clipped it from my shirt to make sure it was working and since it and my hands were soaking wet it kind of fell to the sidewalk. This particular timer is apparently more sturdy than the previous ones I have owned because after I put it back together it kept working perfectly.

Its hard to explain just how wet I was after nearly 3 hours of running and walking. I was soaking wet well before the half way point. At the end of the run my shoes and socks were soaking wet from the sweat running down my legs. Thankfully, when I arrived back at JRC the cooler was still sitting on the sidewalk next to the front door. I sat in the shade and had a couple bottles of cold water happy to have ran 15 miles. This being my longest run since the Angry Tortoise 25K back in February.

Since I haven't posted to this blog in a while I will try to catch up a bit. I had a pretty good June with the week of June 22nd totaling just over 29 miles. Total mileage for June was 76.91. My calender says that through the first half of the year I covered 411 miles.

As the weeks go on I will continue to try to increase total weekly miles and especially the mileage of the Sunday long run. Next up is the Eagle Creek Trail Half Marathon on the west side of Indianapolis on August 2nd and then the Chicago Marathon on October 12th.

Sunday, June 22, 2014

Hot - Hot - Hot - 12 miles - 6-22-2014 - Details

Hot - Hot - Hot - 12 miles - 6-22-2014 - Details

I left the house shortly after 6 this morning with the intention of covering 15 miles using the run-walk-run method. Our thermometer already said 79 degrees and the humidity was reported to be 97%. After a short talk with one of the regulars at JRC I continued on toward UNF hoping to get as many miles in as possible before it got any hotter. I was soaking wet before even reaching UNF.

I did get my course right on this run. At one point I made a wrong turn but quickly caught myself and corrected the error. I had breakfast at 4:30 and took a Hammer gel before leaving the house. I was carrying two 20oz. bottles of Hammer heed and 3 more gels. Water and nutrition was not a problem, I even had more places to stop if needed. It was just to darn hot. 

I am happy to say that I finally found a headphone to use with my new phone/music player/camera so I had a nice assortment of music for the duration of my run. Once I decided my run for the day was over, I walked the last half mile or so to call it 12. Next week I will likely drop back to 10 and then shoot for 15 again on the 4th of July weekend. (maybe we will be blessed with a cold front)

Monday, June 9, 2014

59th Birthday Run - 5 miles - 6-8-2014 - Details

59th Birthday Run - 5 miles - 6-8-2014 - Details

I went over to the JRC group run yesterday morning and celebrated my 59th birthday with a very pleasant 5 mile run. Last week I managed just 10 miles and I am taking it very easy the first half of this week because I am having blood drawn on Wednesday morning and do not want to be fatigued when the blood is drawn.

On Thursday I hope to get in about 6 miles before work and then on Friday and Saturday I have continuing education so won't have time to get out for a run. Hopefully I will be able to crank it back up again next week. 

Wednesday, June 4, 2014

National Running Day - 3 miles - Mellow Mushroom - 6-4-2014 - Details

National Running Day - 3 miles - Mellow Mushroom - 6-4-2014 - Details

Since today is National Running Day I made it a point to get over to the Mellow Mushroom this evening for a group run hosted by Jacksonville Running Company. The JRC evening group runs seem to get a larger, entirely different group of people than those normally in attendance at the Sunday morning run.  I think the promise of a free beer might have something to do with this phenomenon. Still there were a half a dozen or so people there that I know, some of which I haven't seen in a few weeks.

While I was looking forward to the run this evening, the temperature was at least 15 degrees higher than what I am used to running in. What a difference.

Since I am not used to running in the evening I really didn't do a very good job with eating. I ended up eating to much, a pretty good sized salad, to close to run time, and felt it every step of the way. Still, happy to get out and get a few miles in. Now the question is if I will get 5 to 6 miles in before work tomorrow or not. 

Sunday, June 1, 2014

Xterra - Deep South Trail Run - 15K - Jackson, GA - 5-31-2014 - Details

Xterra - Deep South Trail Run - 15K - Jackson, GA - 5-31-2014 - Details

On Saturday I was in Jackson, GA for the Xterra - Deep South Trail Run - 15K. I ran this event because I thought I would find some hills similar to what I will be seeing on August 2nd at Eagle Creek Park on the west side if Indianapolis. I was not disappointed. The course was mostly single track on rolling hills with lake views at times and several creek crossings. 

We stayed at a hotel in Macon, about a half hour to the south, just to have a reasonable selection of dining establishments. On the early morning drive to Jackson I left the interstate after about 15 miles and continued into the woods for another 13 miles. 

I was careful not to make the mistake of going out to fast as I had done in Indy last year. I ran at a comfortable pace and enjoyed the scenery. Instead of doing walk breaks at regular intervals based on time or distance I kind of power walked the uphills as is done quite often at this type of event.

There is a little discrepancy on the course distance. The race promoter stated the distance as 9.3 miles and my Garmin watch recorded 8.45 miles. I've read that sometimes Garmin can be off based on how they measure with the GPS map points. The official results on the race website show my time as 1:45:04 with a pace of 11:18 MPM. My watch recorded a time of 1:44:48 for 8.45 miles and a pace of 12:24 MPM. Since my pace at Eagle Creek last year was 14:34 I'll be quite happy if I can finish with a pace of somewhere between 11:18 and 12:24 on August 2nd this year.

Now back to those official results. If you clicked on the link in the previous paragraph you will see that I finished a pretty disappointing 9th out of 10 in my age group. If you'll look a little closer you will see that Goober Owen from Thomaston was running like the police were chasing him and he edged me out of 8th place by nearly 2 MPM. Darn that Goober.

The race promoter said that they will update the You Tube video from the race but as of this time it has not been done yet.

Since Saturday was the end of the month I will report that my mileage for the month was 84.69 and that brings me to 338.29 miles year to date including this 4 mile recovery run around the neighborhood this morning.