New Bedford

New Bedford

Friday, September 23, 2011

Race Report #2 (Half Marathon)

September 4th: Woke up at 6:10am. Breakfast of one packet of instant oatmeal. Hit up the bathroom. Pounded Gatorade before heading out to Monadnock High School for the start of the Swanzey half marathon. It was already humid out at 7am. The race didn't start until 9am. Once we got there, I registered the $46 bucks (most I have ever paid for a race) and organized all my stuff back at the car. Saw George Adams and let him know when I was warming up. Chilled at the car until about 8:10-8:15am. Found Big George and we warmed up 2 miles. The last mile of the course in reverse, which was very beneficial for me. I wore a shirt for the warmup and it was real sweaty after just 15 minutes of running. I was deciding on whether to wear a jersey and the warmup confirmed I was going to be running for the Bare-chest club. Got back and switched up my socks, Vaselined up the arms and inner thighs, and jogged to the starting line about a 1/2 mile down the road. Fyffe was shooting for a course record so no point in trying to stick with him at all. I discussed my race strategy and goals with George the day before at the alumni race and Pete's BBQ. I wanted to go out conservatively and hit sub 6s the whole way. He said that would be easy, but the half marathon was a road test for the full marathon. Try to focus on staying relaxed and feeling out the right pace for the full. The race was executed real well. The first 4 miles was conservative at 5:52, 5:56, 5:52, and 5:47. At 4 miles, I started to pull away from George and was sitting in 4th place. I couldn't see 3rd at all. I don't know the rest of my splits because I wasn't wearing a watch so I only knew the first 4 because of George. I knew I was starting to pick up the pace and just held it for the next couple miles. At about mile 5.5-6, I caught 3rd place and cruised past him. I knew 2nd was this guy that went out after it from the gun (he knew he wasn't going to catch Fyffe, but 2nd was a possibility). I started reeling him in at about 8 miles and pulled up next to him for a bit. He let me know that he had blown up. I didn't have much to say and he tried hanging on for maybe a quarter mile. Dropped him. Tim Pipp ran with me from about mile 10 to 11. He was doing a long run so he peeled off after a little bit. I cruised in the last couple miles for a 2nd place finish and $50 bucks (covered the race fee and I got to walk away with +4 dollars, woohoo!). My shorts were completely drenched by the end. I grabbed some Gatorade and some orange slices. Headed over to talk with the guys after (Wilson, Ferenc, and Fyffe) and eventually followed down with George and Fyffe. We got going at a good clip and finished up to grab a burger at the refreshment table. Awards and out to The Brewery for lunch with Kimber. Spinach, mushroom, herb cheese, tomato, and sprouts on a bulkie roll. It hit the spot perfectly. Ginger ale for a drink to settle the uneasy stomach from the race. Stopped off at Titus' to say goodbye then the lake house to say bye to Sears. Got back to Kimber's apartment around 3:00 to relax for awhile. Kimber napped while I showered and watched tv. She woke up as a little cranky pants. We worked through her tiredness for about an hour and finally got her out the door at 6pm for a 6+ mile run. I met her at 3 miles with water and to get a status of how she was doing. She felt great and continued on the new route I mapped out for her. I continued another 3/4 of mile or so to encounter a beast of a dachshund. Not size-wise, but the fight in the dog. I was in a car and the miniature dog was preventing me from passing through the road. It was nonstop yapping at the car thinking that I was going to either turn around or surrender. I had no thought of giving up and planned to force this rodent back to where it belongs, it's yard (not the friggin in the middle road). It took about a solid 5 minutes to herd the animal (with my car) back it's property and yelling out to the owner to grab their dog. She was grateful I stopped, but she kept calling it's name with absolutely no reaction from the dog. She finally came out to the road and picked it up. Kimber would of not enjoyed that one bit. Drove back to the house and waited for Kimber to finish up. She cooled off, stretched and we hit up the grocery store for dinner grocery shopping. We picked up a steak, broccoli, potatoes, some stark rub and rolls. Returned to the apartment to prepare our late night dinner (about 9pm we ate). Everything went fairly smoothly. A little stressful (more for Kimber), but it worked. A couple hiccups was the steak dripping off the cutting board while we were allowing it to soak back up the juices (the cutting board did not have a trench surrounding it), the potatoes were not all cut to the same size (Kimber kindly mentioned that to me), and the broccoli was not properly drained from the steamer (there was water in the serving bowl cooking the broccoli). Overall, a successful meal and we were both starving. We inhaled our food and relaxed for the rest of the night.

Summary: 20 miles on the day and 70 miles for the week with a day off (12+ mile hike on Friday). 2 mile warmup (15:00), 1/2 marathon (74:19), and 5 mile cooldown (31:22). The first 4 miles being at 5:52 pace, I must of picked it up to about 5:35 pace for the last 9+ miles. I was stoked after figuring that out. Solid race and a fun half marathon debut. Wore my new Lunarfly 2 trainers that worked like a charm. 4 weeks until the marathon and feeling confident in my running ability.

Sorry for the delay. I will be caught up before my marathon on October 2nd. Been busy looking for jobs and working. I have a whole lot less time on my hands than I did in the beginning of the summer.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Race report (Alumni 5k) plus Da After Party

September 3rd: Woke up at 7:45am. Made one packet of maple and brown sugar instant oatmeal, drank some Gatorade, and vitamins. Gathered all my things for the race and triple checked to make sure I had everything. Foam rolled before heading out the door at 8:55am. Kimber had to hit up the bank before arriving at the sports complex. I made it a point to remove my hat inside while she was depositing money. I wanted to show off my new hairstyle. She was a little embarrassed, but she still loves me. Alumni race was set to go off at 11:30am. A team was late so we went off at 11:45ish (it was Assumption College and they must of assumed it started at 11:30am, instead of 11). We made it to the parking lot at about 9:40am. Pre warmup to check out the new course at 10:15am. Another warmup once the girls went off at 11:15am. Race went better than I thought it was going to. I stayed tough and ran smooth. Long cooldown with Ryan, Thomas and Paige through Yale woods. All said and done, it was about 1pm. Pete Thomas' (coach) house for a BBQ between 1:30-2:00. Kimber and I killed some time by hitting up Walmart (fit right in with my haircut), Olympia Sports, and Verizon Wireless. Pete's house for a couple hours. Delicious free food and drinks. Ate some steak, pork, pasta salad, stale cookie wafers, and a few lemonades/iced teas. Drove back to Jaffrey to relax for a while. Hit up Kimball's for ice cream. We both got smalls on cones. It was literally 4 scoops of ice cream each. I ended up eating 6 scoops (mine and half of Kimber's). I thought of it as simple carbs for the half marathon rather than recipe for cramps/slowness. Kimber napped after while I watched TV. We got ready to head back to Keene (it's a 30 minute ride and it definitely adds up) for the bars! Wore my Zensah calf sleeves out to reduce any swelling. I was wearing pants, don't worry. We hit up Cobblestone's, McCues, and Railroad. I drank quality by having a Long Trail Blackberry Wheat, a New Castle, a Tuckerman's Ale, and a Long Trail Ale. Not drinking since graduation had 4 beers making me feel pretty chill. Loosened me up and I broke out some moves on the dance floor (I thought of it as a shakedown for the half marathon). Kimber drove Boj and I back. Sobreity test within 2 minutes of the drive. Kimber was practically hyperventilating, but we had nothing to worry about. Kimber only had 2 beers in the beginning of the night. She stopped drinking for 3 hours. She was the designated driver. A state trooper "followed us" for about a half a mile before turning off to a parking lot. It had actually met up with us at a rotary by chance, but Kimber believed it was on our tail right after the sobriety test. It wasn't. We dropped off Boj at his house. He had to climb through the window to enter since the doors were locked. Kimber and I made it back to her apartment by 1. Bed soon after, but not without pounding some Gatorade. 1/2 marathon tomorrow and a early wakeup for the 9am race.

Summary: Solid race. Faster course I would say and most people would agree. A second slower than last year. Can't complain. 2:28 at the 1/2 mile. 5:03 at the mile. A little fast and I was like in 10th maybe. Cooled off the jets for the 2nd mile, 10:23 (5:20). Cruised in and pushed the last mile with Hammet and Tim (probably about 5:07ish) We switched back and forth the last 1/2 mile. We all finished within a second of each other. 16:06 for 6th place overall and the 3rd alumni. 6 mile cooldown (Yale 7) at 45:37. 13 miles for the day. 


September 2nd: Woke up at 6am to get ready for the day with the Forest Service. We had a meeting at 7:30am at HQ for group assignments and responsibilities for the day. The past week was focused on the Kancamagus and the front country campgrounds. This day was more about the high traffic trails such as Pemi East Side Trail that leads to my campsite and Lincoln Woods Trail (the one parallel). Once we were divided into groups, we were briefed on the task at hand for the day for each individual. A team of guys from Maine were down to help us for the weekend. Sweet! It ended up being John and I hiking up past my campsite to the Thoreau Falls bridge (a roughly 6 mile hike out there). Everyone got a later start because we had to review JHA (Job Hazard Assessments) for chainsaw use and level 1 trail work. Once we finished, we hit the trail at about 10am. We drove as far as we could on the trail leading up to my campsite. It was maybe a 1/4 mile before we reached a culvert that was exposed from a washout. We parked just before it and began hiking. The next 12 miles of hiking was pure astonishment and amazement of what mother nature has the power to alter the environment and landscape. Wow! If anybody has the chance to check out the White Mountains in the near future, you should. The river and trails make you feel like you aren't hiking in the same area. The sand deposits throughout the trails and river is incredible. Some of the trails are completely different. Pictures to follow sometime soon. I can't explain anymore. I was left speechless. Once we reached the bridge, we took a break for lunch and refueled for the hike back down. We made it back in great time. The only mishap was the last 1/2 mile of the hike where we had to climb down and back up the huge washout. The culvert was completely gone and moved about 30 feet from it's original position. The trail was basically missing with a stream flowing in the middle fit. We made it down to the stream okay, but climb back up the other side was a bit shaky. John led and the ground collapsed underneath his foot. He came crashing down on me. Luckily I am ridiculously strong and caught him with my arms (aka he didn't wasn't too high on the hillside and it was a sloppy catch by me). Both of us were okay and finished up the hike without any injuries. Made it back to HQ by 4:30 and I was on the road to Keene by 5. Made to Fowler Street (former residence) by 7:15. Tim was the only one home. Goupil arrived soon after. He gave me my white trash haircut with my new gold clippers outside. A mullet. Business inthe front, party in the back. Trimmed up the facial hair. Drove to Kimber's new apartment in Jaffrey. Pasta for dinner. Relaxed and bed early for the alumni 5k the next day.

Summary: Day off from running, but I did hike 12+ miles of quick hiking in on some rough trails. My legs were aching by the end of the day. Foam rolled and sticked my legs that night. Popped a couple Aleve before bed.  

Friday, September 2, 2011

Completely updated! Ca-chang!

August 26th: Woke up at 6:20am to my 1st alarm (which was actually my second one) so I was a little rushed. Off to HQ, but no sign of John at his desk. Waited and he arrive at 7:50am. Got to the Lincoln Woods parking lot by 9am. No government vehicle so I had to hike in. Not a problem, just not used to it. Once I arrived at 10am, I was off to campsite monitoring by 10:30. Back at 3pm. The highlights of the hike were that I saw a bunch of toads AND one frog in a puddle, John radioed in to me that the forest will be closed Saturday at 6pm until Monday at midnight (Tuesday 12am), I hiked the 5 miles out to the base of Owl's Head for the last illegal campsite on the Lincoln Brook trail, and I dipped the top of my head multiple times in the river to cool off. Once I got back, I made a pretzel nutella tortilla wrap and napped until 4:30 because the hike wiped me out a bit. I ran at 5 and had to turn around at the first river crossing on the Wilderness Trail because the water was too high. It was a weird run, but a nice recovery run through the trails. Took a dip in the river. Ouch! Coldness! Refreshing though as usual. The legs and body needed it after the 10+ miles of hiking and hour of running. Cleaned the bathrooms and bearbox. People left empty garbage bags and whatnot. Sorta annoying. The family made it back from Mt. Flume at about 6:45 (I saw them crossing when I was checking out the river in the morning before crossing myself, long day for them). I did freeze-dried chicken a la king with noodles. Tasty, but my gravity water filter was leaking. Luckily, its a one night stay this weekend. Throw the boiling water in the pouch and let it sit for the 9-10 minutes. Opened it up and placed it in the bearbox (locked it up) before making my final round. I needed to cool off. Made it back to eat dinner at 8:15pm. As I was approaching my bearbox, I heard crumbling of leaves. They were infrequent and small sounding. I tried some "Psst!" and "Yaww!" I shined my headlamp down on the ground and it was a huge...toad. What s wimp! I have noticed it is getting darker earlier so that means I need to toughen up a little. Or just make dinner earlier and go to bed earlier. Fine by me! Early wakeup for a morning run.

Summary: 8.3 (63:55). Ran to the first river crossing and tried hopping on the rocks, but some were covered. Some people said there was some rain last night in Lincoln. So I had to turn around and head down to the parking lot. I exited the parking lot and found an abandoned road that I ran a couple minutes in before turning around. No complaints.

August 27th: Woke up at 6am and ran the horseshoe loop first thing. I needed to go to the junction of the Bondcliff trail to do trail monitoring (measure level of traffic). So it was a quick day. I ran, ate breakfast, hiked to the junction, stayed there from 10-1:30. I was cut short because there were technical difficulties in the front country and a meeting at 4:30 at HQ. I hiked back to my campsite, packed up quick, hiked/did an interval workout down the trail to make it down by 3:05. I was supposed to stay at Lincoln Woods and close it up for the day while Allison went to White Mountain Visitor Center. We ended up closing it down together. Drove to HQ and meeting cancelled. Headed home to Plymouth to find Paul (trail crew) and Dick (works for Forest Service) in my driveway. Dick was kicked out of his trail at Campton Campground and was gonna be my roommate for the next couple days. He's 72 and hilarious. Ain't no problem here! We all chilled for a while inside and outside. Paul was looking after his friend's dogs. A 16 old pug and a 10 year old mutt (dalmation, pitbull, and others). Both awesome dogs. Chilled the rest of the night as we conversed about everything. I ate Oreos/Fig Newtons with nutella and peanut m&ms. For dinner pretty much.

Summary: 11 miles (84:38). Early morning run was relaxing and slow. Heel has been completely healed up all week. Been waiting for it to act up again, but I think I am in the clear. 

August 28th: Tropical storm a brewing. Woke up at 7am and was out the door running before the serious weather hit around 9am. It was mostly just a constant rain from 9am until 5pm or 6pm. Not any crazy winds or anything. Lost power for like 8 seconds. Worked on my blog all day and relaxed inside. Serious napping from 12-3:30. Eventually, I went to the grocery store for milk and chicken. I ended up thawing out the meatballs I made a month ago or so. I tossed that on a couple wraps with cheddar cheese. Sooo goooood! Stayed in the rest of the night.

Summary: 8 miles (54:08). I am glad the weather wasn't terrible and I had a window to run in the morning. Solid run with the second half being a good clip. 26 and change. I was gonna do a post tropical storm run, but decided to hold off. I am healthy and don't wanna get greedy with mileage.

August 29th: I woke up at 6:15am without an alarm. Forgot to set it. I had a day planned out of going to HQ to apply to more jobs. I made a lunch and everything. I drive down to main street and I am about to cross the bridge. I see cars lined up along the side. Hmm. I drive last them and realize they can't go any further. Flooded! It was crazy to see! For the details, check out my Facebook for the video and pictures. I changed my plan and cruised around town to check out other areas that were flooded. Made it back to the bunkhouse and chilled mostly the rest of the day. Downtown wifi for a bit, laundry got done, and more blog updating. I cooked up the 3 pounds of chicken I purchased and the two squash from before the weekend. Lunch and dinner the next few nights. Got a quality run in before dinner. I was laying in bed and decided to crack open another sleeve of Oreos. I told myself a couple, but it ended up being the entire sleeve (14 cookies). Oops! Still feel asleep with ease.

Summary: 10.8 miles (72:34). 5x100 meter strides after. The course was an out and back. I ran up Texas Hill Road (which I have done before) and then took a left to continue on the same road instead of a right on Reservoir Road. I made it to Walters Way (about a mile) and screamed down the other side of Texas Hill Road for about a mile. I passed a biker (a serious one from the looks) right before my turnaround point. I stepped off into the woods to do my business as always and caught up to the guy only to crush him on the uphill. I started on the downhill and got about 4 minutes down before the guy whizzed by me. Whatever. He's not getting any workout on the downhills, I am. 

August 30th: I woke up at 6am to get ready for the day of landscaping. I knew our building was partially under water, but I didn't know the damage. Eek! I arrived to a mess. Everything ruined! The day was spent shoveling off the walkways to the athletics fields because it was full of river scum. Mad slippery and smelly! Second half of the day was attacking the actual building. Throwing out chairs, desks, and all sorts of things. It was very unfortunate. Once out of work, I took my bike downtown to the gas station to get air in the tires. They beyond needed it. Not riding on the rim, but if I was 20-30 pounds heavier. Then I realized after I biked all the way down to the two gas stations. They just got flooded yesterday. Their air machines (is that what they are called?) are most likely not working. Should I bother to ask? I didn't. Instead, I ventured on next door to my work and asked John (head lawnmower guy) if I could pump up my tires. No problem. Sweet! Then Jim (grounds supervisor) brought down his pressure gauge to measure my tires' pressure for me. How nice! Biked around campus for a bit and parking myself somewhere to surf the net. Made it back to run at 6pm. Shorter run with a quicker last mile. Dinner was chicken, squash and pasta. I had for lunch as well. Popped on to campus from 8:30-9:30. People watched like crazy. With the first day of classes the next day, everyone was out and about mingling it up. A couple guys smoked a joint behind me, two girls asked me where Crawford Street was (I looked it up on my iPad, bam!), a girl asked me if it was alright that she was a lesbian (I responded with "it's cool with me") and two guys asked me which direction they should go to find girls. I directed them down Highland Street towards Main street. A productive night. Relaxed the remainder of the evening.

Summary: 7.5 (49:46). With a mile to go, I was located in the rotary on Main Street. I hear a girl yell, "Nice shorts!" I gladly respond with a smile on my face after a short pause, "Thank you!" She then states, "No really, they look good! I better see you tomorrow at this time!" Hmm. That's a first. 6:25 last mile.

August 31st: Quick day overall. Woke up at 6am. Work was mulching and weeding. No cleanup today. My boss's last day of work. Officially retired. A small gathering at the HUB for punch and ice cream novelties. I took advantage of the food offering by eating a Klondike bar and two ice cream sandwiches. Biked into campus after work because the people watching is excellent. Once I was hungry, I made the trip back to the bunkhouse for a run at 5:30pm. Lounged around after and made waffles for dinner. I smothered em with homemade blackberry and strawberry jam, drizzled a little real maple syrup, devoured each waffle in less than 10 bits. Sick, right? It's the only way I eat my waffles. Najem can vouch for me if he is reading this. If not, many others can. It's just that Najem is a person who takes monster bites as well when it comes to waffles. It's a connection we have.

Summary: 9+ miles (61:56). I did a mini workout by uptempoing and hitting up some side streets for pickups. It went well. A little tired, but a low-key workout. I did not see the girl at the rotary today, which was a little disappointing. I wanted to see if she had any other creative comments since her first was an original. 

September 1st: Woke up at 6am. Did all my dishes. Work was straight mulching the entire day. Made it home to only head back down to campus to grab wifi. Stayed there until 5:45. Biked back, which serves as a nice warmup for the run. Ran a secluded run on the backspace. Made some dinner. Fresh out of leftover chicken and squash. So I made pasta. At the beginning of the summer, I made the decision to not buy Parmesan cheese. I used the next best thing, Parmesan and ramano Ragu sauce. Such a clever idea. Tasted the same and less expensive. Stopped back into town at 9pm to FaceTime with my sister, Sarah. She just got hooked up with the iPhone 4 from a customer at Starbucks. Siiiick! Packed for Keene.

Summary: 8 miles (52:51). A little antsy with the races this weekend. 25:16 second half with 6 flat for the last mile. Felt smooth. 6x100 meter strides. Fitness test this weekend. 1 by grass 5k and 1 by pavement 1/2 marathon.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Enough with Ketchup, Mustard Entry #1 (Almost present day)

August 22nd: Woke up at about 7am. Made a trip to the bathrooms and most people were still asleep. Got back made breakfast and made another round at about 8:15am. UNH was looking to cross the river, but didn't know if they should go around. I was sorta confused because that would be an extra 5.5 miles. I said I was going to check the river now and at that time, I highly suggested to cross the river. Once I reached the water, my mind was persuaded pretty easily to have them go around. The river was at least 6-8 wider on my side, plus none of the rocks/boulders/stones were in sight. Damn! The water was flowing at a steady pace. Way too dangerous to cross. With that, I revisited UNH and told them to head back down and head up the other side. Since it was still early, they had time. If they were going slow, I suggested to head down the middle via Franconia Brook Trail and stay at 13 Falls Campsite. With the inability to cross, I stayed at the campsite for the rest of the day and worked on the 3rd tent pad by filling it up with the sand/gravel mix. Plus, I sawed down a large sapling that had fallen into the path of the trail at the end by the bathrooms and dragged into the woods. Everything went well and got out of the campsite at about 2:30. Headed back to Plymouth and took the scheduled day off from running. I mowed the lawn that took too long because the grass was extra thick and wet. I had a date with Justin Carbee for dinner at the Panther Pub and Grill.  I grabbed the BBQ chicken wrap and couple Tuckerman Ales. Mmm, hit the spot. Relaxed for the rest of the night.

Summary: As of yesterday, I have 6 weeks of training left until my marathon, 4 weekends of care taking left, and 5 weeks of landscaping left. Homestretch here I come!

August 23rd: Woke up around 6:15pm. Work went by pretty quickly. Nothing special. PBJ, Clif bar and banana for food. Once I got out work, I chilled at the bunkhouse until I was ready to run. I am usually starving get out of work so I shovel pretzels with nutella in my mouth and down a bunch of gatorade. I give myself between 1-3 hours to digest depending on how hungry I was (aka how much I eat). Headed out for my run and ending up doing a few sets of pickups after a couple mile warmup and finished with a pleasing time for the run. It was my first run in my new Lunarfly 2's and they were amazing! Ran in the evening so I didn't feel like making dinner. I just ate a couple yogurts to hold me over. I had a protein shake right after my run. No worries, I eat normal the rest of the days out of the week. Relaxed at the bunkhouse and rested up for another day of landscaping and running.

Summary: 11.7 (72:49). I knew I was doing the loop and wanted to test out my legs in some way. So at about 2+ miles I decided to do 4 sets of 1 min on, 1 min off, 2 min on, 2 min off, 3 min on, 3 min off. I got into groove and the new trainers felt great. I took Gu at 45 minutes, hit 9 in 56:20, and cruised the last 2 miles. Huge confidence booster run and legs felt fluid. Overall pace ??????????

August 24th: Woke up at about 6am and another blah day at work. After this summer, I know landscaping is not something I ever want to go into as a profession or take too seriously at my future house. A small vegetable garden is something I could handle and enjoy. Out of work and same kind of deal as yesterday. Killed some food as soon as I got home. Headed out for a run earlier because laundry needed to be done. I headed out the door at 5:45pm. Kept it easy and made it back to prepare a protein shake/dinner which I don't remember what I made. I think I did chicken. I do remember eating a bowl of cereal before going to do my laundry. Took me the usual 1.5 hours and back to the bunkhouse for the night.

Summary: 8 miles (54:53). 28:35, 26:17 (last mile sub 6:15). Relaxing run and the second half in more or less downhill and flat. I wore my Triax Structures and definitely they didn't feel as smooth as the Lunarflys. My last 5 trainers were the original Lunarflys so that might be it. The bulk of the Triax might have too much of a heel for me. They worked fine, but I might not be able to go back to them as easily or notice more.

August 25th: Woke up at a normal hour for work. Nothing special at work. Just glad it was the end of the work week. With hurricane Irene on her way, my mom insisted that I only stay at the campsite until Saturday. I understood her concern for my safety. It gave me something to think about on my afternoon run. Rain was in the forecast so I got out the door fairly quickly after work (and by that, I sat on my iPad until I was hungry and snacked on something before heading out the door). Last minute decision on the run to make it into a workout. It was my 2nd run in the Lunarflys and they did me no wrong. Solid run. Relaxed for the rest of the night. Did a little grocery shopping for the planned shortened weekend with a couple cans of refried beans, tortillas, and a new jar of jelly. Though I had to ask where the jelly was. I feel like every grocery store I have been into the peanut butter and jelly is in the bread aisle. Am I right? For this Hannaford's, these two essential condiments are in the wine aisle along with some other random shhhtuff. I didn't even wanna look around to see what other items these two poor items were surrounded by. All of their family and friends were on the other side of the store alone. I could hear them crying and complaining about being separated from the breads, English muffins, bagels and other fluffy delicatessens. It would a disgrace. HQ and campsite in the morning.

Summary: 13.9 (88:02). Another confidence booster. Solid run. I was planning on doing this loop so I had my Gu ready for the 45 minute mark. With ran setting in at about 6 miles, it made for a excellent run. The "workout" was basically a tempo 10. I knew where 4 miles so I split from there. 4 miles 27:17 and the remaining 9.9 in 60:45. No pain and no chaffing, which is always a plus after running in the rain.

Ketchup Entry #3

August 19th: Drove back to Plymouth at 7am for the Volunteer Appreciation thing at 11am. I got to HQ at 9am and John, Tom Giles and I drove together. All the volunteers were there and a ton of food. Chili, pasta salads, hotdogs, blueberry cheesecake, chocolate chip cookies, and many more scrumptious items. I received a certificate of appreciation for being the Franconia Brook caretaker. Cool cool! They also gave us Leathermans with the US Forest Service emblem on the cases. We split after the awards and I headed back to the bunkhouse to get ready for a run and the weekend. The run went well at 5pm and no problems with the legs. I guess I am waiting for my achilles to act up again, so I am hesitate to truly push the pace. Relaxed for the night with the weekend at the campsite starting on Saturday.

Summary: 11.8 miles (81:37). I could feel the achilles in the last mile, but nothing more than a small ache. Iced after the run and before I went to bed. Some trails this weekend, which have been kinder to my legs than the pavement. I have over 450 miles on the Triax Structures so next week I will be switching into my new pair of Nike Lunarfly 2's I acquired from my dad on vacation. Thanks dad! 

August 20th: Woke up at 6am and snoozed until 7:10am. Just exhausted. I was out of sync waking up late all the previous week on vacation. No worries. Left the bunkhouse at 8:15am and headed to Lincoln Woods parking lot. Jimmy was there at 9am to drive me up and a stock of toilet paper. Once I got to the campsite, I readied myself for some trail monitoring at the Lincoln Brook/Franconia Brook junction. Sat there for 4+ hours and numerous people passed through the junction, which made the time pass by wicked fast. The most interesting person was a woman, Patty Duffy, who came running through the junction, but she stopped to refuel and ask a question. She was looking for two guys that were gonna meet at this junction. She ended up hanging out for about 15 minutes. She refueled with energy gummies and bit-o-honey (I think that's the name of it). I asked her if she was training for anything. She responded with a 100 mile race in Utah! Siiiiiick! She continued to look for them by running down to the parking lot to lighten her supplies to just her water bladder. I stayed put and kept my eyes peeled as I trail monitored. No sign.  As I was leaving the junction at 2:15pm, I intercepted Patty on the way out and we hiked down to the bridge together. She looked like she was maybe early 30s. I ended up looking up her results of another 100 mile race she did in Vermont, Patty Duffy from Springfield Mass = 42 years old. Wow. We discussed running things and her training/races up to this point the next 2 miles. We parted ways at the bridge as I slipped behind the sign to the river crossing to my campsite. I don't know if she found her two friends who were hiking, but there were no reports of missing people. That's always a good thing. Ran at 3:30, set up camp from 5:00-6:00 (water retrieval, toilets, etc). Dinner at 6:30pm. Made my rounds at 7:20-8:00. I climbed into my sleeping bag and a group came in around 8:30pm. They instantly began hacking away at wood. I patiently waited until 8:45pm, but they didn't stop. I got out of bed to just greet them and specifically tell them about the bearbox we have down a little ways. I let them be at their site and bedtime for me.

Summary: Ran 8 miles (62:28). Relaxing along the Wilderness Trail and no pain whatsoever. Though, I forgot to mention that the bottom of my heel was physically bruised but I have no idea why. It acted up last week, then during vacation I asked my mom to see if there was any sign of anything on my heel. There was. No biggie. Just forces to run on my mid foot and toes more. It was tough trying to sleep this night because any pressure would make it throb. Running through it because I'm tough (I guess).

August 21st: Not a great night sleep. Just couldn't get comfortable or something. In addition, the late night hikers across the trail were hacking away again sometime later. I didn't bother checking the time. Didn't wake up to my alarm.  John woke me up at 7:45pm by just talking from outside my tent. He was letting me know he was issuing a ticket for improper food storage. And guess who? The friggin hackers that wouldn't stop. $125 bucks later and it was the guy's birthday. Ouch! Made breakfast at 8:20am. Chilled after and made rounds until about 10am. Did some campsite monitoring from 10:30-2:30. Found some untouched blueberry patches. All mine! There was a huge illegal site I measured that was over 1300 square feet and an established fire pit. Made it back to run at 2:50pm. Thunder rolled in about half way through and the downpour set in for the final stretch of the run. Completely drenched! Stopped to greet a group of hikers coming up to my campsite to stay. I said I would see them up there. It was a Yale outdoors group/club staying the night of their 6 days out in The Whites. Neat! Set them up at #16-19 with the tent pads. Two more college groups stayed this night; UNH and Harvard. It was nice having a bunch of people my age at the campsite. I gave them their space, but it was a breathe of fresh air (not sure if that's the phrase to use). Setting up camp and these two people coming running up the trail. One of them had a yellow long sleeve on. I was investigating on what it said and then they ran into my site. It was Sam Wood an Abbey! Sweet. Plus their dog. Cool! They were doing a long run, so we chatted for a bit and let them get back on the trail. Dinner at 7pm and helped out family choose a site beforehand. More rain and thunder before heading to bed and throughout the night.

Summary: 11 miles (77:05). It was my normal horseshoe loop with the extra half mile to Franconia Falls. The thunder rolled in at about 4 miles and the rain started at about 8 miles. Then it began to downpour (buckets) for the last 2 miles. I had to take off my glasses because they were helping being covered with rain droplets. I was drenched by the time I got to my tent. The heel is still kinda bruised and I felt it going to bed. Who knows! Manning up. 60 mile week. Woohoo, back into the swing of things. Previous two weeks were 36 and 43. Didn't feel like I didn't lose my physical fitness, but my mentality didn't stay all that positive for the beginning part of the setback. With this week, I am feeling confident again with my training. I will test out my legs seriously next week.