2021 Race Recap #12: Reliant Foundation 5k

I don’t know if this was the former “Shore Park 5k” or just the same setup/course, time of year, or what, but in re-reading that write up there are more than a few parallels – starting with the late registration.

I was trying to decide what to do for a run today, and the RD gave a presentation with a bib giveaway at Sneakerama Thursday evening so I decided to go down and run this. The time of day worked out well so it fit in with my busy lifestyle. <<eye roll emoji here>> The day started off with a slice of cold pizza, a sausage & French toast breakfast sandwich and a large coffee, so why not race a 5k?

Continue reading “2021 Race Recap #12: Reliant Foundation 5k”

2021 Race Recap #11: Clarence DeMar Marathon

This was my fifth marathon. A distance is swore I would never – NEVER – do. Where the Half Marathon is a challenging distance, but still doable, the full marathon is straight pain cave nonsense. The elite runners – the folks who have sponsorships to do this stuff – do this seemingly at will. Sure, they’re training, but it’s also their job. For Joe Average, this stuff is hard work.

It’s me. I’m Joe Average.

Continue reading “2021 Race Recap #11: Clarence DeMar Marathon”

2021 Race Recap #10: Black Cat 10-Miler

The saga of the endless pandemic effects continues. The Black Cat is typically run in March as a training race for the Boston Marathon – with the 20-mile distance being a healthy part of a solid training plan. Well, as we’re aware the 2020 races just didn’t happen, so this got deferred to 2021. Which too didn’t happen on schedule.

Now the company that runs the Black Cat, also runs a half marathon called the “Wicked Half,” a race I ran in 2019…you know, in the “beforetimes.” So, incorporating the majority of both courses and combining the races made sense for 2021 and here we are.

Continue reading “2021 Race Recap #10: Black Cat 10-Miler”

2021 Race Recap #9: Laborious Labor Day 10-Miler

There’s no easy way to say this. It was abominable. The Laborious Labor Day 10-miler is the Labor Day version of the same race a local club – the Highland City Striders – runs near Thanksgiving, the Tough Turkey Trot. It’s basically 8-miles of downhill, until it’s not for the last 2.

On this day, I ran the first 5-miles pretty well. Until I didn’t.

Rolling, rolling, rolling, rolling, rolling….bonk

This is one of the situations where I feel like I could have, should have done better. It was a nice day, a familiar – albeit challenging – course. It was a bit of a wake up call for me. “You ran a marathon last weekend!” I heard that a few times, and I’m sure that was part of it, but honestly I know I hadn’t hydrated well. It was a train wreck that never should have happened.

Continue reading “2021 Race Recap #9: Laborious Labor Day 10-Miler”

2021 Race Recap #8: New England Green River Marathon

May be an image of 6 people, including Iain Ridgway, people standing and outdoors
To the far left, waring bib #467 is my club mate, Iain Ridgeway, starting the race. He finished 7th,with a course record for the age group of 2:46:49.1. To put just how fast a marathon that is, I finished almost exactly an hour later, didn’t finish last AND set a personal best. The guy in the middle wearing #504? He won at 2:30:42.3. That’s a 5:45 minutes per mile pace. I raced a 6:11 mile once in a 5k and it almost killed me.

Back in 2019 or so, when I was fresh off my Baystate Marathon personal best, my friend Eric suggested that I should run this marathon. Mostly downhill, beautiful scenery, relatively inexpensive and small. There was a lot to like about this. “Sure. Why not?” and so I pried open my wallet and registered.

Continue reading “2021 Race Recap #8: New England Green River Marathon”

2021 Race Recap #7: TVFR Woodland Trail Series Race 3 of 3

The Woodland Trail Series is billed as 3 5-mile races. The August race historically starts 30-minutes early to accommodate the series awards ceremony and the potentially waning daylight, etc. This year, the third race was also 2-miles shorter. Not sure why, but for a race that costs $6 and which this year donated roughly $500 to the local food bank I won’t complain. Besides, it was 91-degrees at the start time (6PM) and according to Strava, it felt like 103, so it’s entirely likely 5-miles may have in fact killed me.

It’s not hard to see just how much I was affected by the heat and general grossness of the weather.
Continue reading “2021 Race Recap #7: TVFR Woodland Trail Series Race 3 of 3”

2021 Race Recap #6: TVFR Woodland Trail Series 2 of 3

It’s the end of July and this is recap number 6 for the year. Significantly below that which I have come to expect, and yet this race eclipses my total for 2020’s race (and everything else) COVID-shortened activity year. That said in the 5 races I did last year, the distance covered was 66.7 miles. If we include the unofficial “Bill’s Fat Ass Challenge” at the end of the year as race 6, we’d be talking about 98.7 miles.

Continue reading “2021 Race Recap #6: TVFR Woodland Trail Series 2 of 3”

2021 Race Recap #5: Fred S. Warren 5.5 Miler

As I sat down to write this, I realized I hadn’t read my last write up for this race when it was last held in person in 2019. I was surprised to read that I had essentially the same issues at the same points – I mean, today I didn’t have the foresight to use the porta-potty before the race and paid for that starting about mile 3.5, and my shoelace didn’t come undone – and ran essentially the same race, despite the fact that it was roughly 20-degrees cooler today than then. So, all-in-all, despite running today 27-seconds faster, I’d say I had the better race then.

Continue reading “2021 Race Recap #5: Fred S. Warren 5.5 Miler”

2021 Race Recap #4: CMS 52-Week 5k

It’s been a while since I ran a 5k – looks like it’s been since December 2019 since I actually raced one. This was the race that started me toward believing I could become a better runner – faster, do longer distances, more consistent. The club that runs the race –Central Mass Striders – has become important to me as a support system for both running and lasting personal friendships, but also giving back, so since the return of racing in Massachusetts I’ve been volunteering at this race while we work out the kinks on a new course and getting people back into the swing of things.

20210703083227_IMG_7304.JPG
Here I am hanging around shady interstate overpasses.

This week with the July 4 holiday on Sunday, meaning a long weekend for a lot of folks and the generally crummy weather, I figured there wouldn’t be too many people out running this race (I was correct) and with some encouragement that we could get some course monitors, but only if I ran the race, it was an easy decision to make.

Where in the before times the course was around the neighborhoods surrounding Worcester State University and Tatnuck Square in Worcester, and since the college is still not allowing outside events, the club partnered with a fitness club, Worcester Fitness, in another part of the city, to use the course the fitness club had typically used and to use their facilities for registration and the like.

It’s a reasonably familiar 5k route in Worcester, around Indian Lake. Worcester Fitness uses it for their runs, both clockwise and counter-clockwise, and the Greendale YMCA and Bancroft School used to run the Shore Park 5k using it but starting on the other side of the lake.

The first week we ran the race – June 5 – we had 34 participants. 31 the following week. 26 the next two weeks. The month of June gifted us with some beautiful Saturday weather. Today, July was kinder in terms of temperature, but the happenstance of the calendar noted earlier and the rain gave us 15 runners.

I ran a pretty good race today. I didn’t feel great, but I knew I was running pretty quickly, keeping up with the eventual winner for roughly half of the first mile and keeping him within shooting distance for probably 3.5k. I started off in first or second and kept that place for the entirety of the race and I got to High-5 a pair of very enthusiastic course monitors as I ran by which lifted my spirits.

Just as my watch clicked off mile 2, my heart rate was skyrocketing – I haven’t pushed that hard in a long time and it caught up with me – so I actually walked for a short bit while I brought it down. Short races are much different in terms of pacing and I’ve clearly not practiced running hard and short.

I finished with some of the best mile splits I think I’ve had in a very long time, if not ever, and came in second – which has NEVER happened. I’ve never even sniffed second place in any race. This was a top-3 5k effort for me. The dirty little secret here is that it’s probably a Personal Best, given the Top 2 are times earned at Canal Diggers races, widely known in the area as something shorter than 5k. But, it is what it is.

And I’m super happy we’re racing again.


5k Race History

Canal Diggers8-Sep-1821:13
Canal Diggers7-Sep-1921:44
CMS 52-Week 5k Series3-Jul-2122:34
Celtic 5k11-Mar-1822:46
Celtic 5k24-Mar-1922:58
Run4Veterans 5k Road Race/Walk4-Nov-1723:59
CMS 52 Week 5k Series10-Mar-1824:11
CMS 52 Week 5k Series24-Feb-1824:16
CMS 52 Week 5k Series17-Feb-1824:22
CMS 52 Week 5k Series27-Jan-1824:24
Old Fashioned Ten Miler & Flat 5k19-Feb-1724:26
CMS 52 Week 5k Series21-Jan-1724:27
CMS 52 Week 5k Series3-Mar-1824:30
CMS 52 Week 5k Series4-Feb-1724:36
CMS 52 Week 5k Series25-Feb-1724:36
CMS 52 Week 5k Series26-Nov-1624:42
CMS 52 Week 5k Series18-Mar-1724:42
Shrewsbury Road Scholars 5k10-Apr-1624:45
CMS 52 Week 5k Series28-Jan-1724:48
CMS 52 Week 5k Series28-Oct-1724:55
CMS 52 Week 5k Series25-Nov-1724:55
CMS 52 Week 5k Series21-Oct-1725:13
CMS 52 Week 5k Series2-Dec-1625:14
Craft Brew Races|Worcester30-Apr-1625:18
CMS 52 Week 5k Series25-Jun-1625:26
CMS 52 Week 5k Series9-Jul-1625:28
CMS 52 Week 5k Series17-Jan-1725:29
CMS 52 Week 5k Series13-Jan-1825:30
St.Pat’s 5k19-Mar-1625:31
CMS 52 Week 5k Series31-Dec-1625:41
CMS 52 Week 5k Series4-Mar-1725:42
CMS 52 Week 5k Series13-Jan-1925:44
CMS 52 Week 5k Series4-Jun-1625:47
Guinness Shamrock Shuffle26-Mar-1625:48
Irish 5k5-Mar-1625:49
Worcester Running Festival 5k19-Jun-1625:50
CMS 52 Week 5k Series16-Sep-1725:54
LUK’s 6th Annual Scholarship 5k22-May-1625:55
CMS Lake Park Summer Fitness 5K26-Jul-1625:57
CMS 52 Week 5k Series30-Apr-1625:58
CMS 52 Week 5k Series21-May-1626:00
CMS 52 Week 5k Series16-Jul-1626:01
Franklin County 5k23-Apr-1626:13
CMS 52 Week 5k Series27-Feb-1626:15
CMS 52 Week 5k Series2-Jul-1626:15
CMS 52 Week 5k Series11-Feb-1726:17
CMS 52 Week 5k Series12-Mar-1626:27
CMS 52 Week 5k Series18-Jun-1626:32
CMS Lake Park Summer Fitness 5K12-Jul-1626:34
CMS 52 Week 5k Series2-Apr-1626:35
CMS 52 Week 5k Series19-Aug-1726:36
CMS 52 Week 5k Series19-Nov-1626:44
CMS 52 Week 5k Series6-Aug-1626:47
CMS 52 Week 5k Series22-Oct-1626:51
PLR ShamRock & Roll 5k6-Mar-1627:07
Katie Chalifoux Memorial 5K Road Race30-May-1627:10
CMS Lake Park Summer Fitness 5K5-Jul-1627:32
CMS 52 Week 5k Series20-Aug-1627:37
CMS 52 Week 5k Series20-Feb-1627:39
CMS Lake Park Summer 15-Jul-1727:48
FIT Turkey Trot 5K24-Nov-1628:37
Sweetheart 5k Fun Run13-Feb-1628:48

2021 Race Recap #3: Horseneck Half Marathon

This was the result that wasn’t supposed to happen. The Sunday before this race, I’d punctured my foot and couldn’t run for a few days. In fact, the day after the race – a full 8 days after the injury – I’m still really sore. I didn’t sleep well for a few days before the race. My eating has been not good. The night before, I’d had the opportunity to join some lifelong friends after a long, cold pandemic to watch a classic of our generation outside on a projection screen. This was wonderful, but not necessarily the battery recharging one would normally recommend. End result? Two half marathons this year, both in my Top 3 at the time. I’ve run this race 3 times, the last two are in my current Top 3.

The race has just started and I’m already clearly not happy about it.

Of course I don’t know what happened to my bib – these were mailed out several weeks beforehand, and in the chaos of what has become my day to day, it likely got thrown away in my most recent Purge. Because of this, I needed to get to the race that much earlier to square away that issue. And of course, Westport MA is about 90-minutes away and requires leaving the state, crossing Rhode Island and re-entering Massachusetts. That 8 AM start quickly gets pushed back by commuting time and administrivia when you have to change your bib-number (Orignally 67, New 933).

Continue reading “2021 Race Recap #3: Horseneck Half Marathon”
INCERTO - Medium

"Lorum Ipsum"

Massachusetts Employment Law Blog

Legal news and updates for Massachusetts employers from Morse

MassUltra

Going beyond the marathon in Massachusetts

Reluctant Running and Exercise | CraptRunners

Crappy • Runners • Are • People • Too

Statistical Sage Blog

Dedicated to Teaching Statistics

kottke.org

"Lorum Ipsum"

A Frank Angle

Thoughts from the Inner Mind

willwriteforfood

Blurring the line between novelist and blogger since 2016