Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Day Off

Hip flexor and throat soreness returns. Frustrating, but I am trying to focus on rest and feeling good for the next two weeks until I have a real training plan.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Amherst Trails

Time: 52:25
Distance: 7.5

I was finally feeling decent and ready to sweat it out. It has been annoying to be in Amherst the last few days and not get in a good run, so I went right to some of the trails around the Bike Path and Amherst College. I even jumped in the river near Stanley Street.

I was feeling very positive and my lungs weren't too congested, which was nice. My left hip flexor was again worse than I would've liked it, but I did stretch it out well after the run. I'm assuming everything is no faster than 7:00 right now. I timed the first mile in months for the last bit of this run and (admittedly picking up the pace a little bit) ran just under 6:30.

Friday, June 12, 2009

Day Off

Still sick.

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Day Off

Sick again. Lame.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Ten Miles

Time: 67:45
Distance: 10 mi.

I ran by my new digs at Brookings on Massachusetts Avenue near Dupont

Back at it and feeling positive. My left hip flexor was more sore than I would've liked, but I was happy overall. I ran down through Rock Creek Park and popped out in the city to run through Dupont Circle and back up Florida and 16th Ave. In order to get a full 10 miles, which was my goal for the run, I added on a bit to Spring Road.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Day Off

A torrential downpour and lightning storm took me out of the game for the one time I would have been able to run today. I did get in a good massage with Terrel Hale, though, which will hopefully help my lingering hip flexor (and hamstring) issues.

Monday, June 8, 2009

Zoo Loop

Time: 40:00
Distance: 5.75 mi.

Easy morning run with Max and Pat Murphy looping through Rock Creek Park and the Zoo. Hip flexor tight by the end.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

Week In Review

Time: 175:00
Distance: 25 mi.

Three good runs, but a sandbagged week due to being sick. While my right hamstring feels generally good these days, my left hip flexor is a bit of a drag.

Glover Trails

Time: 62:30
Distance: 9 mi.

Easy run in the Glover trails from George's house. The trails were a little bit sloppy, but we got in a decent effort. And I raced George at the end... We're still waiting for the determination from FAT timing.

Saturday, June 6, 2009

RCP South

Time: 49:24
Distance: 7 mi.

Easy morning run down Florida Ave. to southern RCP and back through the park with Ben Clark and his friend Jeff. I was a bit tired from a long week, but it was good to have company. Good brunch afterwards.

Friday, June 5, 2009

Day Off

Thursday, June 4, 2009

Easy City Loop

Time: 63:00
Distance: 9 mi.

Evening run with Peaches, Ozzie and Ben Clark. We looped around a bit through the city, ending up on east U St. and ran back through Shaw and up to Petworth.

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Day Off

Hopefully back tomorrow...

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Day Off

Still sick.

Monday, June 1, 2009

Day Off

Jetlagged and getting sick.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

May Review

Distance: ~100 miles (yes, that's for the whole month)

Well keeping a log of running through pain 4-5 days per week was depressing. So I quit again for most of May. After this weekend, when I got in two 50+ minute runs with less hip flexor and hamstring pain than I have had since the marathon back in February, I have decided to keep myself more honest and get back to keeping myself honest.

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Bryn Mawr

Time: 30:00

Easy morning run with Ozzie and Tushar from Tush's place in Bryn Mawr. A bit tired and dehydrated, but excited to head to Heps at Penn. Moderately tight, but nothing out of the ordinary these days.

Stretching: Umm...

Friday, May 8, 2009

Day Off

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Rock Creek Park

Time: 31:13

Easy loop through RCP. Hamstring was tight the whole run. Hip flexor okay.

I haven't been stretching enough this week.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009


Time: 30:20

Easy run through a rainstorm. Just what I needed.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Day Off

Monday, May 4, 2009

Adams Morgan / Zoo

Time: 34:51

Easy afternoon run through Adams Morgan and the Zoo with Peaches, who just moved back to DC over the weekend.

Stretching: Hamstring

Sunday, May 3, 2009

Week In Review

Time: 138:41
Distance: ~20 mi.

Another 5 day running week. I am feeling some slight improvements in my hamstring and hip flexor.

Mt. Pleasant Loop

Time: 30:43

Easy loop dipping into RCP and around Mt. Pleasant. Felt okay, considering I was running early to miss the harder rain that hit the District later in the day.

Stretching: Hamstring stretches with the rope.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Midas Run

Time: 26:00

Morning run down to Midas near Mt. Vernon Square, where I had some break work done on the car yesterday. I felt much better than the morning run earlier this week, though I was still a bit tight.

No stretching, headed right to work.

Friday, May 1, 2009

Day Off

Thursday, April 30, 2009


Time: 33:23

Easy evening run towards Adams Morgan, through the Zoo and back through RCP. I thought this loop was a bit shorter, and I have been bored doing out-and-backs in the neighborhood so I figured I would do something a little different. Legs weren't as bad as I expected--hamstring was tight but not sore, and hip flexor started to get sore and tighten up at about 25 minutes.

Stretching: Hamstring stretches with the rope.

Wednesday, April 29, 2009

Day Off

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Aspen Hill

Time: 23:43

I found a good place to park and run on the path in Rock Creek Regional Park when I visit Terrel Hale in Rockville.

The run this morning was not great, as I was stiff and both my right hamstring and left hip flexor got sore very quickly. It was too bad, as the weather was good and it was nice to be on a path in the woods.

Stretching: Terrel helped me with some very active hamstring stretches.

Massage: Massage and ART on hamstrings, adductors, and psoas.

Monday, April 27, 2009

Columbia Heights/Adams Morgan

Time: 25:52

Easy run around the neighborhood. Pain/soreness on-par for recent days.

Stretching: Hamstring stretches with the rope.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Week In Review

Time: 105:00
Distance: ~14 mi.

Just a start. Five runs averaging around 20-21 minutes.

Day Off

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Saturday Morning Jog

Time: 22:56

Easy morning jog with Nick towards RCP and on the Piney Branch trail. Hamstring and hip flexor both tight and a little sore.

No stretching, because brunch was a bigger priority.

Friday, April 24, 2009

Day Off

Thursday, April 23, 2009

Columbia Heights

Time: 21:05

Easy jog after work. Colin added on after his workout for the first half. Hamstring sore.

Stretching: Hamstring stretches with the rope.

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

North on 14th

Time: 22:26

Easy jog north of Columbia Heights on 14th. Hip flexor seems to have responded a bit to the massage. Hamstring sore.

Stretching: Hamstring stretches with the rope.

Tuesday, April 21, 2009


Time: 17:00

Early morning jog in Bethesda at Civic Center Park near the Rock Creek Regional Park. Just a bit of a warm-up run before a massage.

Massage: I had my first appointment with Terrel Hale, a DC-area massage therapist who has generously offered to help me get back on my feet. He did some active release on my hip flexors, quads, glutes and psoas. None of it was too rough and I left feeling good.

Stretching: Worked with Terrel on some hamstring stretches.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Piney Branch

Time: 21:35

Easy evening run around Piney Branch Park and the neighborhood. My right hamstring and left hip flexor were about as tight/sore as they have been recently, but I didn't start to feel the hip flexor until about 15 minutes.

This was a pretty good day to get mentally started with the come back, as I got pumped up watching the Boston Marathon this morning at work. I was happy to see Nick Juravich ran a PR (2:51:32). Taylor caught the end of the race in Boston and got this great shot of Ryan Hall:

Sunday, April 19, 2009

What do we do when we fall off the horse?

I can honstly say that for most of the last six weeks that I wanted to be running, but I really haven't been able to put in much of an effort. My right hamstring and left hip flexor have been continually tight and sore, leading me to believe that I have an underlying hip alignment problem. Some strengthening and stretching exercises have helped, and I think I will be able to see a massage therapist and maybe a chiropractor soon. For the last 3 or 4 weeks I have been putting in 10-20 minute jogs 3-5 times per week to get the blood flowing before my strength and stretching sessions.

I hope that I have progressed to the point of having a very modest training regimen and holding myself to a basic schedule. Nothing makes you want to run like forced time off. I have probably run less than a marathon total in the last 6 weeks.

I don't have any big goals yet, but I've got some ideas...

Sunday, March 8, 2009

Week In Review

Time: 87:00
Distance: 12.25 mi.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Day Off

Friday, March 6, 2009

Day Off

Hamstring sore just walking around.

Thursday, March 5, 2009


Time: 49:18
Distance: 7.25 mi.

In the minutes, hours and few days following the marathon, my right hamstring was tight and very sore. In fact, I spent most of the race day using a long squeegee as a cane. I wasn't particularly surprised that it hurt, but once I wasn't using it in the last few weeks off, I didn't really feel it. I didn't do anything to try to address whatever was wrong with it though, and after just two days back I can see that it isn't in great shape. Fairly quickly in this run it was very tight and sore again, and I had to take it very easy on every hill along the way. I was clearly compensating for it, as my left hip flexor and right calf got pretty sore as well.

Other than that, it was a decent run on a fairly nice afternoon. I ran up through RCP to Broad Branch, then took Brandywine out to Connecticut near Van Ness. I followed Connecticut (and the Red Line) back to the Zoo and then ran straight home.

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

NW DC Loop

Time: 38:33
Distance: 5 mi.

Easy evening run with Colin. This is my first run in 17 days, which is the longest I've taken off as long as I can remember. The weather is finally starting to return to normal, and I'm hoping this is the last run I go on this winter in long pants. And by return to normal, I mean that we had a blizzard last weekend and this weekend it is supposed to be over 70 degrees both days this weekend.

Mizuno Wave Creation 10

I succumbed to getting some everyday running shoes that are more supportive of my feet than the LunaTrainer. I will keep them around for some faster efforts, if those happen at some point. After wearing a bunch of different models around at the Georgetown Running Company, I went with the Mizuno Wave Creation 10, as they don't carry the Nike Elites that I have worn for a long time. I am very wary about getting in new shoes, but I don't have much of an option at this point. They felt fairly good on this short effort, and despite feeling some tightness, my foot didn't really hurt. My right hamstring, on the other hand...

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Day Off

Okay, now I'm just being lazy.

Monday, March 2, 2009

Day Off

I'm going to start running sometime this week, but the storm this morning certainly didn't help my motivation to make it happen today.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Week of February 23 - March 1

Another planned week off. Again, I wish I could say that all this rest was curing my foot, but I still feel it walking around, particularly in the mornings. The dress shoes certainly don't help.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

Week of February 16 - February 22

Week off. My left sesamoid continues to nag at somewhat random times walking around.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Week In Review

Time: ~300:00
Distance: ~45 mi.

Welp, that's that. I am very sore in general, but my foot doesn't hurt.

Two weeks off, coming right up!

...and sorry for the delays in updates from the marathon.

Austin Marathon

Time: 160:00?
Distance: 27 mi.

Target: run a smart race; sub-2:30, hopefully sub-2:28
Race: 2:36.02 for 4th (on a very uncompetitive day)
Splits: 5:55.5, 5:59.0, 5:38.8, 5:42.4, 5:37.4, 5:40.5, 5:43.3, 6:01.3, 5:48.0, 5:44.6, 5:51.1, 6:01.0, 5:45.6, 5:37.3, 6:01.0, 5:58.2, 5:54.9, 5:52.1, 5:37.3, 5:40.6, 5:24.0, 6:23.2, 6:26.5, 6:25.0, 7:06.4, 6:57.9, 1:10.0 (last 0.2 mi.)
Course Map
Full Results

Start of the marathon on South Congress

With my shadow through about 10 miles

Final stretch... ouch

This was certainly not the marathon debut I was hoping for, but I learned a lot and it kicked off a great week in Austin. In lieu of a long blow-by-blow recap, I will summarize what I took from my first marathon experience.
  1. Eat, eat, eat: One Pop-Tart before the race and GU at 13 and 20 miles is not enough energy. You NEED it for the last 10k, stomach be damned. It was all I could do in the last 5 miles to finish the race.
  2. Don't be lonely: It is so much easier to let the tempo slip when you are alone or don't have someone to share the pace with. The lesson here? Find a competitive race, or at least an injured friend to bike along with you.
  3. Make a day of it: Having a good plan for the rest of the day of the race and have some friends around to help lessen the sting of a sub-par performance.
  4. Run through it: I have never had a major race that didn't come along with one niggle or another. I was frustrated by the tendonitis in my right foot for two weeks leading up to this, but I barely felt it in the race.
  5. Train better: While my training was perfectly fine (particularly given that I was running solo almost exclusively leading up to this) and probably would have prepared me for a 2:30ish race if I had done some of the other things better, I could have been more reliable on the workouts.

Saturday, February 14, 2009


I wanted to stop over-thinking everything I could the week of the race, so I stopped really paying much attention to recording or worrying about exactly how much running I could get in. In this span, I ran twice or three times, including a nice pre-race run in Austin the day before with the crew in town for the race.

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Day Off

Planned day off. Can feel the sesamoid a little bit when walking barefoot.

Monday, February 9, 2009

Echo Hill Loop

Time: 45:11
Distance: 6.5 mi.

Easy 45 minute run in Amherst through Echo Hill. I was neurotically thinking about how my sesamoid felt and I did sense a bit of tightness, but there was really no pain during the run.

I loaded up the iPod with some Ratatat beats to try to keep my mind clear.

Sunday, February 8, 2009

Week In Review

Time: 146:00
Distance: 21.25 mi.

Just over 20 miles in two days and three runs... yikes. Definitely not ideal, but I've been managing the tendonitis and it definitely hasn't gotten any worse. My plan for the next week is to run about every other day for 40-45 minutes and focus on managing inflammation and any soreness.

Seven days to the Austin Marathon.

Day Off

Was originally planning to put in an easy 5-6 mile run, but I had to make an unexpected trip back to Massachusetts, so this ended up as an off day.

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Day Off

Planned day off. Foot mildly sore.

Friday, February 6, 2009

Opulence Run

Time: 42:00
Distance: 6 mi.

Easy evening run with Colin on his "opulence run." My foot was a little bit sore towards the end of the run and afterwards, indicating that I should probably keep things below 8-10 mile days through the marathon.

Zoo Loop

Time: 34:50
Distance: 5 mi.

Thirty five minutes of running completely pain free. Maybe I've been being too cautious, but I feel good now and that is a whole lot better than the alternative. I'll get in another easy jog this afternoon with Colin.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Day Off

Cautionary day off. Feeling my left sesamoid a little bit walking around, but it's not bad.

Wednesday, February 4, 2009

Day Off

My sesamoid continues to be a bit sore. I was walking around for a bit during the day and I could feel a dull ache after a while.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

RCP South, Georgetown

Time: 69:00
Distance: 10.25 mi.

Montrose Park, which connects RCP with Georgetown (and a shameless plug for my Flickr photostream)

Easy morning run in some light snow. I was definitely in the overthinking-the-pain mindset that Jordan and I talked about recently, in which it is difficult to know how much a small injury is nagging because you can't get your mind off it for one step. I think I was completely pain free in my left sesamoid until 50-55 minutes and then it started to get a little bit sore. The run took me south in RCP through Montrose Park around Georgetown and all the way back up. I cut out of Rock Creek Park a little bit early and ran back by way of Columbia Road rather than finishing up Klingle Road when I started to feel some soreness in my food.

I ran with a mix of eclectic hip hop on shuffle. This included Ratatat's two volumes of remixes which have some nice twists on rap classics (from the era of when Kanye was a rapper and older), and the new N.A.S.A. album The Spirit of Apollo which features performers ranging from Ol' Dirty Bastard to Tom Waits.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Day Off

I could feel the left foot a bit walking around in dressy shoes today, which is not ideal.

Check out the the Boston Globe's Big Picture take on the 2009 Tough Guy Challenge. It is a little silly and a little awesome.

Runners in the 2009 Tough Guy Challenge in Wolverhampton, England

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Week In Review

Time: 520:45
Distance: 75.75 mi.

Another good week of training for the last week that I was concerned about running hard at all. I'd like to keep the volume decent for the next week (foot permitting) with easy runs and a short workout and one or two medium long runs. The focus from this point forward, of course, will be feeling good and staying healthy.

Rock Creek Park Loops

Time: 135:00
Distance: 20 mi.

I managed to find company for all of my last long run before the Austin Marathon. I met up with Max at the beginning of the run, and we picked up Rosen at about one hour into it. Max dropped off around 90 minutes and I ran with Jon most of the way back to his house. I first went West in the park, then once we picked up Jon up and down Beach Drive.

I felt fairly good throughout the run, except for at about 100 minutes when my left sesamoid became quite sore in a very short period of time. I definitely had to alter my stride and foot strike to keep the pressure off of it. I can't think what might have brought this on, other than the more minimal midsole of the Lunatrainer catching up with me after having worn it for the last week. I hope this is not the case, as the shoes have seemed great so far.

Saturday, January 31, 2009

Potomac Loop

Time: 60:00
Distance: 8.5 mi.

Morning run from the Georgetown Running Company with Max and a few other people. We ran a loop around the Potomac beginning over the Key Bridge and back over near the Jefferson Memorial. It was cold and windy near the river.

Friday, January 30, 2009

Georgetown, National Mall

Time: 82:15
Distance: 12 mi.

The Kennedy Center for the Performing Arts along the Potomac River

Early morning run with some of the GRC crew--Max Lockwood, Pat Murphy (who ran for Penn State) and Pat Hughes (a former University of Rochester runner). We did a 10ish mile loop over the Dumbarton Bridge to Georgetown and then looped down by the Potomac and the Kennedy Center through the National Mall and back up 14th Street. I added on a few more miles with a loop down to Florida Avenue. My legs were a little tired from the workout yesterday, but getting back to running before 7am wasn't as bad as I thought it would be. Hopefully this will be my schedule again soon.

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Ninety Second Hills

Time: 98:30
Distance: 14.25 mi.

Target: 12 x ~400m hill (actually about 380-390m) with descending effort, try to keep downhill rest at a decent clip (100%?)
Workout: 95, 94.5, 93.7, 92.3 (avg: 93.9); 91.3, 87.8, 90.2, 88.3 (avg: 89.4); 88.5, 88.6, 85.7, 85.9 (avg: 87.2)

Looking up the hill on Grant Road

Early afternoon workout on Grant Road on the western side of Rock Creek Park. I ran up this hill yesterday when trying to avoid Ridge Road which was unplowed, and figured that it would be a good place for a longish hill workout. Today I warmed up over Ridge Road, only to find that a lot of it still had ice and snow making for a very slow warmup.

To get the distance for the hills, I ran 95 seconds up Grant Road at a moderate effort. The goal for the rest of the workout would be to bring that time down 7-10 seconds, which I successfully did. Despite feeling the effort pretty well even on the first interval I was recovering very quickly and the recovery of running all the way down seemed excessive. Not a lot you can do about that on a hill workout like this, though, and I tried to keep the pace downhill fairly honest (90-100 seconds). My right hamstring was a little tight and sore from the get-go, but it didn't get any worse in the course of the workout.

Midway through the workout as I was getting ready to head up for an interval my mind flashed back to a high school pre-race chant, inspired by the film Gallipoli. I was hoping that I could find the clip online, but it doesn't seem to be out there. Anyway... it brings back great memories.

Coach Gould: What are your legs?
Team: Springs! Steel Springs!
Gould: What are they going to do?
Team: Hurl me across the course!
Gould: How fast can you run?
Team: As fast as a leopard!
Gould: How fast are you going to run?
Team: As fast as a leopard!
Gould: Then let's see you do it!
All: Go 'Canes!
It is a great movie. Go see it.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Les Miserables

Time: 61:30
Distance: 9 mi.

If I had to describe this run with the title of a famous Broadway play, it would be Les Miserables. Taking yesterday off was a tactical error. The weather continued to degenerate over the last 36 hours from light snow to sleet, ice slush, and freezing rain. After putting this run off all day hoping for at least the ice that was all over the streets, sidewalks and trails would melt I headed out the door just before sunset. The sunset itself that I saw near Military Road in RCP was the saving grace of this run, which was totally unexpected given the freezing rain that was falling as I headed out the door. My out-and-back run went through the roads of Rock Creek Park up to Oregon Road for a bit and then straight back. I had to put up with some obnoxious drivers who didn't like the fact that I was running on the road rather than the icy and uncleared sidewalks.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Day Off

Light snow for most of the day gave me the excuse to make this my day off for the week. I'll use this boring, terrible excuse for a post to highlight some of the music I've been listening to while running in the last few weeks.

The release of Minty Fresh Beats Jaydiohead mashup dovetailed nicely a lot of Radiohead in my playlists in the last few months. Keeping in line with my recent visits to Brooklyn (and recent publicity for the movie Notorious, such as two hour Biggie marathons on VH1 Soul) I have been listening to Notorious B.I.G., as well. I really like both the mashup of Biggie's Everyday Struggle with the Ace of Base classic All That She Wants and the Ratatat remix of Party and Bullshit. Also on the hip hop side of things, I've finally gotten around to giving DC-native Wale an honest listen, and his free Mixtape About Nothing is very good (see Nike Boots featuring Lil' Wayne, for example). As for rock and roll, I'm still enjoying TV On The Radio's "Dear Science" album (check out DLZ) and the Handsome Furs new album "Face Control" is growing on me (I'm Confused, in particular, is a great running song).

Monday, January 26, 2009

Downtown DC

Time: 83:33
Distance: 12 mi.
Map (approximate w/o trails)

The Washington Monument at night

Evening run with Rosen looping through Rock Creek Park, a bit of Georgetown, the National Mall and back through downtown DC. My legs were only a little bit sore, which I was happy about, and it was great to have company. I wasn't planning to go quite this far, but we were running easy and I was feeling good.

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Week In Review

Time: 513:30
Distance: 77 mi.

Great week of marathon preparation with some nice runs in the DC area, a good workout, and a very good half marathon marathon-prep run. Glad to have new shoes, and feeling positive about the next few weeks of running. My right hamstring and piriformis/glute continue to have lingering tightness and soreness, and I should try to work that out a bit.

Manhattan Half Marathon

Time: 117:00
Distance: 19 mi.
Course Map

Target: run comfortably at target marathon effort (and a little faster), hopefully beginning around 5:40 effort and average 5:35 (~1:13:10)
Race: 1:12:19 (5:31 average) for 6th place; ran controlled and even effort throughout

Splits:  Loop 1 - 5:38, 5:44, 5:25, 5:43, 5:37, 5:21
Loop 2 - 5:31, 5:34, 5:21, 5:40, 5:31, 5:16
Loop 3 - 5:25, 33 (5:31 average)
Full Results

Nick, his friend Nat and I got up early in Brooklyn to trek to Central Park for the first race in the New York Road Runners Half Marathon Grand Prix. The NYRR put on a half marathon in each borough in New York City throughout the course of the year, beginning with today's race in Manhattan. While we were treated with beautiful sunrise, it was shy of 20 degrees F out with moderate gusts of wind.

Race morning in Central Park, by fellow runner ECWC

While my legs were a bit stiff throughout the race, due to the cold, after warming up in the first few miles it wasn't too much of an impediment at the pace we were running. I ran pretty much exactly the way I was hoping to, keeping the effort very under control early and then slowly dropping the pace to a faster, but comfortable clip. While the splits were all over the place, due to the hills in Central Park, I dropped the effort fairly evenly, running 33:28 for the first lap (5:35 pace) down to 32:53 for the second (5:28 pace). Luckily I had company throughout the race, as T. Patrick Hynes of the Greater New York Racing Team and I figured out that we had fairly similar plans for the day. We led a chase pack for most the race and picked up many of the people who fell off the leaders in the second lap. He and Victor Vientos, who ran with us for a while, kicked fairly hard at the 13 mile mark and I didn't really give them a run for it. I was having a great day and wasn't going to jeopardize it by threatening my tight right hamstring on such cold day. I finished feeling aerobically comfortable and with my legs in good shape. The "cooldown" was rough, though, as the cold seized my legs very soon after finishing.

The start of the race at 8 AM

Nick and Nat also had good races, and we were in good spirits (despite freezing again) heading back into the subway. The only thing I missed out on today was practicing taking some GU and water while running hard because, well, it was just too damn cold.

More: NYRR Manhattan Half Marathon VideoNYRR Photo Gallery

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Zoo Loop

Time: 50:30
Distance: 7 mi.

The pandas were one of the few animals out this morning

Easy run through Rock Creek Park to Tilden Road, up to Connecticut and back through the National Zoo and Adams Morgan. Legs are still very stiff, so I cut it a bit short. It's going to be under 20 deg F tomorrow for the half marathon. Great!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Rock Creek Regional Park

Time: 80:30
Distance: 12 mi.

View Larger Map

Well, the weather is finally cooperating for a few days--it was about 50 degrees and I headed out this afternoon in a t-shirt and shorts. I ran just outside the Beltway through what I believe is called the "Rock Creek Regional Park." The bike path through this area continues from the top of Rock Creek Park along Beach Drive through Chevy Chase, MD and farther north. I started at the intersection of Cedar Lane and Beach Drive in Chevy Chase and did a simple out-and-back run on the winding and somewhat hilly bike path. There are a smattering of distance markers along the way, though none of them seemed to form a coherent measure for the trail.

Clown shoes?

I also finally started running in a new pair of kicks, courtesy of the OK Runner. The Nike LunarTrainer is essentially a beefed up Free with a new "LunarLite" midsole that is supposedly more durable and distributes weight more evenly across the bottom of the foot. I like that the upper is wide and flexible and that it has a wide midsole base. Weighing at under 9 oz (25% lighter than the Nike Elite 3s I have been running in), it might just be a trainer for the next month as well as my marathon race day shoe. Unfortunately, the shoes aren't miracle workers, as my legs felt pretty dead today, and my left sesamoid was a little sore.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Yasso 800s

Time: 84:30
Distance: 12.5 mi.

Target: 8 x 800m in 2:35 down to 2:25 with 320m jogging rest (one lap on Georgetown's Ellington Track)
Workout: 2:22.5 (96 sec), 2:26.3 (92), 2:23.4 (93), 2:25.1 (93), 2:24.1 (102), 2:25.0 (97), 2:24.4 (105), 2:23.4 (110); average: 2:24.2

The Ellington Track, next to Georgetown University (photo from 1960)

I headed out to do a medium-length track workout without even thinking about the "Yasso 800" workout, a marathon preparation workout that Bart Yasso developed and running experts like Amby Burfoot and Greg McMillan tout as a great predictor of marathon time. McMillan describes how the workout should be run:

The theory behind Yasso 800s is that your time in minutes and seconds for a workout of 10 times 800 meters (two laps of the track) with equal recovery time is the same as the hours and minutes of your marathon time. For example, if you can run 10 times 800 meters in three minutes and 20 seconds with three minutes and 20 seconds recovery, then this predicts that you can run three hours and 20 minutes for your marathon. Run 2:40 for the 800s and you can run 2:40 for the marathon.
As it turned out, my workout was fairly close to this (without planning on it) though with shorter rest and only 8 intervals. When I felt so good running way too fast on the first interval, I decided to just stick with 2:25s throughout the workout, trying to keep the rest between 90 and 100 seconds for one lap of Georgetown's Ellington Track, which is 320 meters (or 7:30 to 8:20 pace). My legs got tired (I'm still running in beat-up Elites), but aerobically I felt great. McMillan thinks this workout over-predicts by 5 minutes, but I tend to think that I race better than I workout, so I'm fairly happy with today's effort.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

RCP Superloop

Time: 91:00
Distance: 13.5 mi.

The Valley Trail along Rock Creek

I got out this afternoon for my favorite loop through Rock Creek Park, which includes 9 miles of great trails (connecting the Valley and Western Ridge trails and loops up to the Maryland border. I kept the pace easy throughout, and was surprised to see that I averaged 6:40s when I mapped it out (thanks to the "topo" view of Google Maps, which shows the trails in RCP).

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Day Off

I spent most of the day on the National Mall watching the inauguration. I put a few photos up on Flickr.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Wheaton and Northwest Branch Trails

Time: 90:00
Distance: 13 mi.

After an errand in Rockville, MD I was looking for somewhere interesting to run. After ruling out an inexplicably snowy Rock Creek Regional Park in Rockville, I stopped at Wheaton Park in Silver Spring, MD without much of an idea what to expect. After doing a few short loops in Wheaton Park, I found a connection to the Northwest Branch Trail, which runs 3.5 miles south to US-29. This made for a very nice out-and-back section and combined with the Wheaton Park trails was a great, almost completely soft surface, 13 miles. The run felt a lot like an east coast version of Austin's greenbelt, with a few rocky and technical sections. If I did this run again, it would probably be best to start at the parking lot at US-29 and run up to Wheaton Park and back.

My legs were a little tired by the end, and my left sesamoid is still getting a bit sore after about 50 minutes of running.

Sunday, January 18, 2009

Week In Review

Time: 515:45
Distance: 77.75 mi.

Fairly good week of training in my first full week back in DC. I got all my milage in 6 runs in 6 days and am feeling very comfortable running 80-90 minutes on a daily basis. My legs feel a little beat, but my shoes are well over 500 miles so getting some new ones this week should help with that. It is really nice to have Jon Rosen in town to get some runs in with, and I will consider running some with the Georgetown Running Company guys.

Next week will be down somewhat milage-wise as my long effort is going to be the Manhattan Half Marathon and I will likely not run on inauguration day. My goal for the race will be to go through the motions of a long distance race (warmup, gu/water, conservative race plan) and I am going to try to start off, at least, just at marathon pace. I will try to get in a hill/fartlek workout on Wednesday or Thursday and maybe do a medium long (15) mile run on the other day.

Four weeks to Austin.

Capital Crescent Loop

Time: 125:17
Distance: 20 mi.

Target: progression steady long run, getting down just below 6:00 pace and going 20 miles
Run: 4.65 miles north through RCP in 33:27 (7:11 pace); 15.35 miles around Capital Crescent Trail in 92:00 (5:59 average with measured miles on the CCT--from miles 7-14--in 6:20, 5:57, 5:52, 5:51, 5:48, 5:49, 5:52)

The Dalecarlia Tunnel over the Capital Crescent Trail in Bethesda, MD

I started off running with Rosen from Pierce Mill. He ran with me for the first 30 minutes and then turned back to do an out-and-back. This great loop, which measures exactly 20 miles, connects the full length of RCP on Beach Drive with the Capital Crescent Trail. Once I crossed the Maryland border, just beyond 4.5 miles into the run, I started picking up the pace a bit. Because I am probably running the Manhattan Half Marathon (or a half marathon simulation) next weekend, I wanted to do a steadier run than last weekend without going to the well. I got down to about 6:20 pace by the time I got on the CCT and then tried to keep the rest of the run just a bit below 6:00 pace. My legs were beat from the get-go (I really need new shoes... are you reading this Jordan?) and got sore and tired as it went on, but I felt fantastic aerobically. Despite being tired at the end, I recovered very quickly.

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Glover-Archibold, Capital Crescent Trail

Time: 68:00
Distance: 9.5 mi.

I met up with the guys from the Georgetown Running Company for their Saturday morning run. It was still very cold, though not quite as bad as yesterday. The guys had a loop similar to what I did yesterday, but coming back on the CCT. Running slow made my legs feel lethargic.

Friday, January 16, 2009

If you must venture outdoors...

Time: 88:00 (?)
Distance: 12.75 mi.
Map (approximate)

Today's National Weather Service wind-chill advisory states, "If you must venture outdoors, make sure to wear a hat and gloves." Well, I decided that two pairs of gloves were probably in order as the temperature was 12 deg. F, feels like -1 deg. F as I was heading out the door. Despite my being bundled up, I was pretty cold and honestly, a bit miserable, throughout the run. My legs felt stiff the whole way, my face was frozen, and my left sesamoid was sore by the end.

I was happy to find a good loop through the Archibald and Glover trails, the Chesapeake and Ohio towpath and back through Rock Creek Park, though, which could become a regular jaunt.

Thursday, January 15, 2009

RCP Western Ridge Trail

Time: 86:00
Distance: 12.5 mi.

Pierce Mill, where Tilden crosses Rock Creek Park

Very nice afternoon distance run with Jon Rosen, who just moved to DC. I met him at his place in Adams Morgan (exactly one mile into the run) and we ran north in Rock Creek Park so I could show him some of the trails up there. We went up the Western Ridge Trail and then came back through the middle trail to give him 10+ miles and me 12+. It was great to have company today to take my mind off the miles and the cold.

Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Georgetown Branch Trail / Capital Crescent Trail Fartlek

Time: 88:30
Distance: 14 mi.

Workout: 2 x 5:00, 2 x 4:00, 2 x 3:00 with half rest; shooting for sub-tempo (5:00?) pace

I decided to explore the north side of the Capital Crescent Trail, which is actually (for the moment?) called the Georgetown Branch Trail (named after the railway line which used to pass along this area) for the first few miles. The beginning is located just north of Rock Creek Park in Silver Spring, Maryland. For some reason the mile markers begin at 0.3, but I went a little ways beyond the 7 mile mark, near the Potomac and just before the Capital Crescent Trail meets up with the Chesapeake and Ohio Towpath.

Start of the Georgetown Branch Trail (and eventual Capital Crescent Trail) in Silver Spring, MD

Running out I got down to about 6:15 pace and was feeling fairly good despite it being a chilly day. Changing gears to 5:00 pace was a bit of a challenge, though and I ran about 5:10 pace for the two 5:00 intervals, and probably something similar for the 4:00 intervals. By the 3:00 sections I got down to 5:00 pace (judged by the half mile markers). I didn't feel fantastic, but given the that I have done very little anaerobic running, I was happy just to work through it. I did have to stop to lose my thick running shirt, which seems to be too much if I'm doing a hard effort regardless of how cold it is outside.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Day Off

Monday, January 12, 2009

Downtown DC

Time: 60:00
Distance: 9 mi.

Easy evening run from Columbia Heights south through Rock Creek Park to Dupont Circle. I looped around the White House and headed back up 14th Street. My legs are a little bit tired, and my sesamoids are sore on both sides... I think it's time for some new shoes.

I did get to listen to Face Control, the new Handsome Furs album which Brian let me know was out in the wild. Like their last album, Plague Park, it is a little bit stark, but good for a night run in the city.

I also registered for the Austin Marathon today, and booked tickets. This is really happening.

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Week In Review

Time: 535:15
Distance: 78.75 mi.

This was a fairly good week of training, with almost 80 miles in 6 single-run days. I also completed the move down to Washington, DC--hopefully for good.

Outside The Beltway

Time: 140:00
Distance: 20.5 mi.

The Capitol Beltway (I-495) and the DC Mormon Temple

After my plan for a morning run in New York with Nick was derailed by having to deal with my car window getting smashed in Brooklyn last night, I was forced to run by myself in the evening in Washington, DC. I headed out the door unsure if I was mentally ready to get in a long run with the sun slipping towards the horizon. Once I got going, though, I decided it would be best to get 'er done and over with. I kept the pace very comfortable so that I wouldn't be repeating the last two weeks' long runs, both of which involved going to the well.

The run itself ended up being quite nice. Beach Drive is closed to auto traffic on Sundays and it was late enough that there was almost no one out. The Maryland border is about 6.5 miles out, so I continued past it on city roads heading north in Silver Springs, MD. Just before I reached the Capitol Beltway I saw an enormous white Wizard of Oz Emerald City or Magic Kingdom-esq lighted structure. As I got closer, it became apparent that it was a Mormon Temple. It absolutely dominates the skyline, particularly at night. I turned around at 70 minutes and ran back, at this point in nearly total darkness. Running through Rock Creek park was a bit creepy, but I did enjoy feeling totally alone with just the sound of the creek to accompany my footsteps. I got back to the house in 138:30, so I added 90 seconds along 11th to finish up around 7pm.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Damn I'm Cold

Time: 56:40
Distance: 8.25 mi.

Early morning run before leaving Amherst, hopefully somewhat permanently. My legs were a bit shot from yesterday's run and it was 7 degrees when I headed out the door fairly well bundled up. I was hoping to get in 60-70 minutes, but I was stiff, cold and tired, so when the loop brought me back towards the house, I just finished it up.

And without further ado: Bun B and Lil' Wayne - Damn I'm Cold

Friday, January 9, 2009

Sixty Second Hills

Time: 88:00
Distance: 13.5 mi.

Target: 12 x ~300m hill (actually probably 290m), 4 comfortable / 4 hard / 4 harder
Workout: 65.2, 66.0, 62.1, 62.6 (avg: 64.0); 60.6, 61.1, 61.6, 58.3 (avg: 60.4); 59.4, 58.6, 57.4, 56.2 (avg: 57.9); rest between 75 and 90 seconds running down

First time I've gotten out for a hill workout in this training cycle, and it felt pretty good. I started from Puffer's Pond and ran up past the starting point for the hills so that I could get in a 25 minute warmup. The hill, starting at Market Hill and going up the first section of Flat Hills Road isn't too steep, but is a steady grade until the top where I went up and over. I finished with 35 minutes easy back to the car.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Moody Bridge

Time: 99:45
Distance: 15.5 mi.

Light snow covering the Mt. Holyoke range, just south of Moody Bridge

Dirt section of Moody Bridge Road

Out and back run on Moody Bridge road and out to RT-47. Feeling a little bit guilty about taking yesterday off, I vowed to get in a mid-week medium long run today. The weather was quite nice, and despite some random shin tightness in the first 5 miles and some standard piriformis tightness/soreness towards the end I felt fairly good. I am a bit dehydrated, though, which didn't help me feel sharp. I kept the pace up for the last few miles, getting down to 6:05 on Station Road and 5:40 through Amherst Woods.

I queued up the new TV On The Radio album Dear Science, which I will admit is very good (despite being inclined to be skeptical about any indie music that Pitchfork loves) and kept the energy up throughout the run.

I took the photos here later in the day when I was out doing some errands. I am the proud owner of a nice new DSLR, so hopefully I'll be able to post more original running-related photos when I get the chance.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Day Off



I could've gotten in a run in the afternoon in the cold rain, but I opted out.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009


Time: 81:45
Distance: 11.5 mi.

Dave Burnham drove down from his parents' house where he is hanging out for winter break. We got in a nice easy run through Echo Hill to UMass and back through the center of Amherst. The sidewalks still aren't completely clear and the shoulders aren't well plowed, so we had to jump on and off the street throughout the run. Sesamoid still a little bit sore.

Monday, January 5, 2009

South Amherst Loop

Time: 69:00
Distance: 9.5 mi.

Easy afternoon run with Jon Rosen (after whom the classic Rosen Loop is named) and Matt Lacey. Jon just got back from Zanzibar, and it was interesting to hear some of his stories from his time there. Man, I want to travel. Matt was in the middle of a 2 hour run and started from his house. This was a good recovery run, though I didn't feel too bad after yesterday's effort. My right sesamoid is a bit sore, which I will keep an eye on.

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Week In Review

Time: 450:15
Distance: 68.5 mi.

Well, the trend continues that (almost) every day I've been getting out I've gotten a good effort in. New Years Day was an exception this week, but I was happy to run easy with Craig and Tushar. Nearly 70 miles with almost two days off isn't too bad, but it would be better at this point to be in the 80s.

Super Rosen Loop Steady Run

Time: 112:46
Distance: 18.25

Target: 2-3 miles warmup, 12 miles steady, 3-4 miles cooldown
Run: 2.75 miles, 12 miles averaging ~5:45, 3.5 miles

A mediocre long hard effort of 12 miles on the 7 mile Rosen Loop. My watch lost the splits somehow, but my splits ranged from 5:35 to 6:30 (a seriously uphill mile that included a GU, water, and a shirt change). The majority were in the mid-5:40s (with a few faster), so I'm going to call that the average. This loop is much more hilly than my last steady run and despite feeling great aerobically throughout I my legs felt pretty dead from the get-go. Oh well, it's another long and hard effort. I should be much better rested by the next steady effort in two weeks.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Reverse Pelham Hills Loop

Time: 70:50
Distance: 10.5 mi.

Hilly afternoon run in Amherst. I was undecided about where to go, and only decided on this loop as I was heading along Harkness. It was a good decision as I really like this loop, though I am pretty run down from the last week (and still somewhat dehydrated and underfed), so the hills "found me out" a bit (a Bill Bowerman expression). The run was only interrupted by having to shout down and then outrun two dogs near the top of Gulf Road.

I ran with some music again, this time getting through selections from the Notorious B.I.G. classics Ready To Die and Life After Death. So many of the songs on these albums are stories that I felt like I was basically listening to an audio version of a gangster movie. Things could be worse.

Also, there's an article in Slate about John L. Parker Jr.'s classic running novel "Once A Runner" that is worth reading, though I have to say that I disagree with the author's dismay that the book is going back into print. If anyone reading this hasn't had a chance to read "Once A Runner," you'll be able to grab a new copy in April (for less than $100).

Friday, January 2, 2009

Amherst Loop

Time: 76:18
Distance: 11.5 mi.

Decent afternoon run in Amherst. The roads aren't completely clear from the recent snow, so I had to stay on fairly well-trafficked roads. I went out through Echo Hill to Amherst Road and did a lollypop around the high school and town before heading back.

Thursday, January 1, 2009

Central Park Jog

Time: 28:00
Distance: 4 mi.

New Year's Day jog with 3/4 of the Brown '06 contingent. Craigger, Tushar and I were missing Jokin, who was holding it down on the left coast, but it was good to sweat it out with these guys. This was an easy run, and I'm not going to ruin Craigger's "4 mile" loop by telling him that it is short. Tushar even made the decision to wear pants without consulting anyone! Maybe things do change as the years pass...