Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Vintage Striders

Seeing Neil's recent post, I just had to put this photo up...............I may have posted this in the past, but Neil, in case Bonnie hasn't seen this, I'm sure she'll get a good chortle out of it.........


December accomplishments

I actually planned to run a 5K over Thanksgiving, but my mother passed away (after a long illness) so had to scratch that idea. So instead last weekend on went on two snow shoe hikes. Both in New Hampshire White MOuntains

On Saturday climbed Mt Isolation which was 14 miles and over 2,500 ft of evelation gain. Took about 9 hours.

On Sunday did North and Middle Tripryamid about 9.6 miles again over 2,500 ft of evelation gain. Took about 8 hours.

Not quite the exertion of running a marathon, but certainly a good solid effort.

Monday, December 21, 2009

Mile Run Aborted: Winter Training Mode Begins

With the 1-2 punch of being sick for a few days, and winter storms covering up the track, I decided to take a well-deserved rest from hard training and racing for a few weeks. Thus, although the multitude of blog readers will be disappointed, I am bowing out of the indoor mile race on December 26.

In summary, 2010 was a great year for running. I ran 10 mile attempts, with a best of 5:20.7, and also ran 2 5ks in 18:48 (track) and 18:54 (winter road race with a couple hills). In addition, I managed a 3rd place overall in a very hilly trail 10K trail run (albeit with a slow time of 45:03, 7:15 per mile). My mile and 5K times were my fastest by far since 2000 and 2001, and my 5K time of 18:48, when age graded, was a substantially better performance than my 18:21 5k in 2000.

And no, I am not giving up on the 5-minute mile quest. Although it literally becomes harder each year, I feel that this year I made good progress, and plan to continue that into 2010, with perhaps more emphasis on mileage as a base, especially in the winter and spring.

For the next couple of months, I hope to run about 3 to 4 times per week, 4 to 5 miles per run, but weekend "runs" may be substituted with cross country ski outings whenever possible.

Oh, and C'mon Harry!!

Saturday, December 5, 2009

Annual Reindeer Run 5K Results!

(No. 399, all black in photos)

Under excellent conditions given the time of year, I met both of my goals for this race (well, I think I did). (1) Break into the top 10 overall, a fairly lofty goal in a race that usually exceeds 400, and had 599 finishers this year. (2) Sub-19 - a reasonable goal, given my 18:48 on the track by myself two weeks ago.

(2nd from right, No. 399 in photo)

The results: 10th overall out of 599, 1st in the 50 to 54 age group, and a time of 18:54 (6:03/mile).
Conditions were much better than typical for this race, with temperatures near freezing and NO wind. The cemetery had a lot of ice before the race during my warmup, but apparently they salted it just prior to the race, and it was no problem. Although in Buffalo, the race had a couple small hills, and lots of twists and turns. I decided to get out fairly fast, because the easiest part of the race is the first mile, on city streets. I passed the mile at about 5:57, the 2 mile at 12:07, then must have maintained about a 6:05 pace for the final mile.

(right top of photo, No. 399, turning final corner)

In the final 400 meters, I moved into 9th place. In reality, when I set my goal of top 10, I was thinking below 10th, or single digits, so I'm not sure I can claim that goal. Anyway, it was a youngster (maybe 15 years old). When I passed him, he said very politely "nice job sir!" Most teenagers these days don't call us codgers sir, so I was quite impressed.....until he blew by me like I was standing still in the last 100 meters!

Anyway, this has always been one of my favorite races. The 18:54 was my second fastest time since I first ran it in 2000 (9 years ago) and ran 18:21. I imagine that with age grading, this might be my best performance.

Now, I'm still thinking about that indoor mile on December 26, if I don't retire from racing before then!