Monday, June 30, 2014

Ending June with a Humid Double

I ran 17 miles yesterday and was disappointed that I couldn't get in more.  Today, would've been an off day.  However, I am busy tomorrow, so I ran today.  The plan was to run twice.

I would've liked a morning run, but I couldn't get up.  An early afternoon one would've been nice too, but I was tired and took a nap.  I started the first run at 4 PM.  I wanted to do a loop.  I parked near the WAWA on 25th Street.  The short loop here would be about 8 miles.  Then, maybe I'd add some more.  I had run all the parts of this route before, but never this specific route.

I started off heading toward the Boat Launch.  I felt fairly good and it was a decent pace.  It was pretty humid and the shade was off and on.  I went out with a very solid first mile, at just over 8 minutes. 

The pace picked up after that.  The road to the Boat Launch is a long and gradual downhill.  I was glad that I didn't have to stop at the road crossings for very long.  The pace naturally got faster.

With the heat and humidity and the pace, I was breathing fairly heavy in miles 2 and 3.  Mile 2 was 7:27 and mile 3 became an even faster 7:12.  At that point, I tried to slow myself down.  I didn't want to pay for it later.

It didn't really work though.  The downhill toward the Boat Launch made for yet another fast mile.  I ran mile 4 at 7:14.  I thought I might pay for this.  As we got to the flat, I started falling off.

The pace was just too much.  I was soaked by now and struggling with my breathing.  When I drank water, I started to choke a little.  I had to slow down.

At about 4.5 miles, I did reel it in a bit.  Still, it wasn't actually slow.  I just tried to focus on mile 5 and then 6.  I slowed to 7:26 and then 7:34 on the next mile.

I was getting closer and closer to Riverview Park, but it was still too far.  I couldn't quit though or I'd have a far walk back to the car.  I just tried to focus on making it to Riverview and eventually I did.

My problem now was that it would be a big climb to my car.  I knew I was suffering too much to pull it off while running and I really didn't want to take a chance and overdo it either.  I went out past the path to my car.  I ran a short out and back along the path.  I then quit the run at mile 7, with a 7:36 mile.

I had a long walk uphill back to my car.  That was fine.  I thought about running a mile when I recovered, but I didn't bother.  It was a good run to find my limit in difficult conditions.  I'm still trying to learn how far I can push it.

I rested for a little over 3 hours.  I started my second run at 8:30 PM, as the sun was setting.  I wanted to run 10 miles, but I'd at least be happy with 8 miles.  I wasn't going anywhere, so the plan was to run around the neighborhoods.

I need to practice running at night, for my marathon.  This was a good combo of running in daylight and night and seeing how the temperature changed.  It was a little breezy again during this run and the temperature dropped, but the humidity got even worse. 

I ran shirtless as usual, even if it was going to be dark.  I didn't want to wear a headlamp or anything reflective, so I had to be careful.  I had to pay attention to cars.  I also ran the lightly traveled neighborhood.  It wasn't bad.

I started by looping around my neighborhood.  That was a nice mile to start.  It was a very disappointing 8:57 time however.  My legs were a little sore and I did expect this run to be slower than the earlier one.  I didn't think it would be that much slower.

I didn't worry too much about the pace though.  I just kept on going.  The beginning of this run didn't seem too bad.  I headed to the neighborhood on the other side of the school.  I ran the two out and back sections, to add distance.  I needed to add wherever I could.

The out and backs go uphill and downhill.  It was nice to go downhill on the main road to the industrial park.  By mile 3, I was at least running closer to an 8 minute pace.  I added some distance through a small neighborhood.

A biker drove through the industrial park.  He had on reflective gear.  It was nice to get to mile 4, but I was sweating a lot.  My grey shorts were getting soaked.  I couldn't believe how much farther I had to yet.  I wasn't enjoying this run nearly as much as I had in the beginning of it.  I ran to the dead end of the industrial park.  I was almost exactly at 5 miles.  That was perfect.

I came back, trying to repeat the exact same route.  When I'd get back to the school then, I'd be at 9 miles.  Then, I could finish the last mile however I chose.

Going up the main road hill was a challenge.  My legs were tiring after all the mileage today and yesterday.  It was a good mental test for sure.  I just kept going.

I almost didn't want to add the out and back dead ends, because they are hilly.  However, I'd have to make it up later.  I told myself, get through that and all that is left is easy downhill.

The out and backs were tough, but I remained focused.  I hit miles 7 and 8 and was exhausted.  I was soaked in sweat.  The darkness wasn't helping any.  This was one of the most humid runs of the summer.  I drank all of my water by the end.

It was good to be going downhill now in the darkness.  I couldn't look at my watch too often, since it was dark.  Every now and then, I'd light it up.  I got back to the black path and hit mile 9 right there.

I was really disappointed when I got to the school.  I was going to loop around the parking lot to finish.  However, two women were out walking a bunch of dogs.  I think I encountered them doing the same after dark before too.  One dog was friendly, but he sort of ran to me that time.  I didn't want to mess with that.

I headed back into my neighborhood for the last mile.  This was another mental challenge, but it was good to nearly be done.  When I was struggling, I told myself, push through it is an off day tomorrow.  Also, I know my marathon won't be easy, so my training runs can't all be easy either.  I need to learn how to suffer and get through.

I couldn't believe how humid this run was at night.  I'll run some more night runs over the next few weeks.  Maybe I'll get used to it.  I'll try running fast at night too.  However, I'm not very confident now that I'll run fast during the race.  I think the marathon will be more of a survival run.

Tomorrow, I'm busy so I'm taking a needed rest day.  I'll pick it up on Wednesday.  I'll try to do the long run that I missed yesterday.  I want to at least get to 20 miles.  Running 23 would be awesome.  It is going to be very hot and I don't have time to run long in the morning, so this run will be interesting to say the least.

Run 1 7.01 miles - 52:47 (7:32 pace)
Run 2 10 miles - 1:20:34 (8:03 pace)

Sunday, June 29, 2014

The Importance of Calories

Today was my last scheduled long run.  The plan was for 23 easy miles.  I couldn't get up in the morning, so I didn't run at Eddyside.  I walked out the door with all my gear at noon.  It was so hot, so I walked back inside.  I decided that I'd run in the evening or even the dark.  That wasn't the worst idea.

It was cool when I first started, at least by current standards.  It was still hot enough to go shirtless and of course my shorts were still completely soaked by the end.  I hate summer so much.

I didn't eat dinner before the run.  I would end up paying for that.  I headed to Northampton for the run.  I figured that I could run on the D&L, Ironton Rail Trail and Nor-Bath Trail from the middle of Northampton.  It would take a little distance to get to each trailhead, but that was fine.  I could just about divide the run up nicely into thirds.

I parked next to Northampton High School's baseball field.  I put on my headband, filled my handheld and grabbed some GU Chomps.  I ran toward Main Street to start out.

The plan was to go out to 3.5 miles and turn back for the first segment.  I'd head over to the D&L first.  I'm not crazy about that surface, so it was a good place to start.

I felt good as I ran through town.  I was on the D&L fairly quickly.  I opened with a nice 8:10 mile.  The legs were sharp.  It was still a little hot, but in general, not too bad.  I could deal with this temperature and humidity all summer.

I cruised along up the trail.  I was relaxed and not looking at my watch too often.  The cliff along the trail blocked a lot of the early sun.  The run was going well.  I began clicking off miles at sub 8 minute pace.  I was working at a comfortable effort too.

There were a few people out on the trail, but I was surprised that there wasn't much traffic.  It was rather light.  I got out to 3.5 miles in no time and I turned back around.

Heading back to Northampton wasn't bad.  This first segment was nice.  As long as I focused on getting to the end of it, things were good.  It was when I realized how much more mileage I had left overall that gave me problems.  It seemed overwhelming.

I was back at my car just past 7 miles.  I was a little sweaty and exhausted.  The stop was good though.  I dried off, refilled my water and grabbed some more GU Chomps.

Next on the agenda was to run the Ironton Rail Trail.  This would be a little more challenging.  I'd have to run over the river on the bridge and then go down and find the trail.  I ran through Northampton, to the bridge.  I had a nice downhill segment.  I wasn't crazy about climbing this later.

I crossed over the bridge.  I saw some stairs, but then I realized that they were closed.  I started running on the road parallel to the trail.  There was a road that didn't look like it went down to the rail trail, or rather it looked like it was fenced in.

I continued on along the road.  There were lots of houses, but no path to the trail.  I was over 1.5 miles out from my car at this point.  I passed a few kids playing catch in the street.  Finally, at a dead end, there were steps down to the trail. 

I began running the trail in the clockwise direction.  I couldn't believe that I wasn't at mile 10 yet.  I had a long way to go yet.  The good thing is the sun was setting and it was getting cooler and cooler.  I felt good and at times, I was almost chilly.  This trail was quite busy.

It was slow early on, but I got into a groove and cruised along.  I was thrilled to get to mile 10.  Then I hit the halfway point at 11.5 miles.  Getting to 13 and 13.1 miles was nice too.  I tried to focus on making it to the main parking area.

That actually occurred right before 13 miles.  I wanted to get there, so that I could drink some cold water.  That brief stop was refreshing.  I was feeling a little beat though.  I was hoping to be fresher at that point.

I finished up the loop.  When I got to the bridge, I saw that the road I was looking at earlier, went up to the bridge.  I took that route.  I figured that I'd arrive back at my car around mile 15.  That would be nice.

I decided that I wanted a little more distance.  Therefore.  I ran to Route 329 and then down Laubach, back to the high school.  That got me very close to mile 16, when I was at my car.  I did a short out and back to hit that mark.

It was good to have 2 of 3 segments done.  I threw my headband off and dropped off my handheld too.  It was getting very cool and nearing darkness too.

I was shocked at how wiped out I was at this point.  I almost considered quitting right there, but I decided to tough it out.  I hoped that the break would be a big plus.  I toweled off, drank some more and popped a couple GU Chomps.

I took off for the Nor-Bath Trail.  The downhill start was excellent and I felt much better.  That didn't last at all though.  I began to feel awful on the side of Northampton High School.  I was only about half a mile into this segment.  I was completely exhausted and having some minor stomach issues.  I just turned around to go to mile 17.  I was very disappointed.

I ran to mile 17 to finish the run.  I ran very slowly up the hill to finish up.  I was quite disappointed.  The heat might've taken some toll, but I was done in mostly by not eating dinner.  I definitely needed more calories in my system, than the few I was getting from GU Chomps.  I usually don't worry about calories and I don't have a problem with them.  Without eating though, I crashed big time today.  I was even still exhausted when I got home.

I do have to laugh a little that I ran 17 miles and I'm disappointed.  I came up 6 miles short of my goal.  I could've struggled badly and made it to mile 20, but that would've been pointless.  I just called it a day.  This was supposed to be my last long run before the marathon.  Therefore, it leaves a bad taste in my mouth.

Tomorrow, is normally my off day.  However, I'm busy on Tuesday.  Therefore, I'll probably take off Tuesday and run a bit tomorrow.  It would be nice to run twice tomorrow.  Maybe I can get up in the morning for a short run.  I'd love to hit 90 miles this week.  I think I might shoot for 20-23 more miles on Wednesday.  I don't think I can let this week go without running that far.  It just won't sit well with me.

17 miles - 2:14:18 (7:54 pace)

Saturday, June 28, 2014

A Solid Pair of Runs

After an outstanding run with Kristin yesterday, I decided to break my Saturday up into 2 runs.  Before I got out late in the morning, Ryan from the BCR was asking if anyone wanted to run in the afternoon.  That was perfect for my second run.

I could've run all 13 miles at once, like I'd often do.  However, I knew breaking the run up into two runs of 6 and 7 miles would be better.  The second run was planned for the Nor-Bath Trail.  I decided for the first run that I'd just run the neighborhoods around my house.

I thought it would be very hot.  Running through the neighborhood, there would be no shade.  It was hot at 11 AM.  It always is this time of year.  However, it wasn't too bad.  I went shirtless as usual.

I headed straight for the other neighborhood on the opposite side of the school to start.  I figured this would get me 5 or more miles off the bat.  I had on my newer shoes and had no problems.  The legs felt a little sore early on, but very well rested once I warmed them up.

It was a little hot, but I'm adapting well.  After a first mile around 8:30, things picked up and I ran consistently around 7:30 pace.  I was chewing gum the whole time, so I wasn't even running hard.

Even though it was hot and I've run these neighborhoods so many times, I was enjoying myself.  I'm not sure why.  It wasn't too long and I was into the industrial park.  After looping through the dead end, I was around 2.5 miles.

I headed uphill, but it wasn't so bad.  I took a short detour around the neighborhood before the hill.  Since I wanted some extra distance, I ran both of the out and back dead ends in the bigger neighborhood.  That added on over a mile.

I was glad to now be over 5 miles, as I headed for the home stretch.  It was a nice downhill too.  I was feeling so good. 

I got back to the elementary school right around mile 6.  I decided that I'd run another mile and make it 7 total.  I did a short loop in front of the school.  That added about a third of a mile.  I then went into my neighborhood and did a short loop to finish up. 

My legs slipped a little at the end, but my pace didn't.  It was great to be done with 7 miles through the heat.  I drank no water during the run.  I didn't feel that hot, but I was definitely soaked afterward.

I recovered well and felt good for the afternoon run.  I met Ryan at Bicentennial Park.  He has never run the Nor-Bath Trail.  The plan was for 6 miles.  At first, I couldn't find him, so I ran up the trail to check the far parking lot.  He was late and I found him at the main trailhead.

We headed out toward Airport Road.  I didn't want to cross that, so we'd just go out that far in that direction.  We went easy to begin and started off chatting.  He ran Trexler for the first time the last week and he's running it again tomorrow.  I wish I could make it out there.

The first mile was a slow 8:47.  I was fine with that, if that's what pace Ryan needed to do.  I kind of let him control the pace.  We picked it up after that though.  We turned around at Airport Road at about 1.25 miles.

We went back toward Bicentennial Park.  I realized that I was talking like crazy, so I decided to be a little more quiet.  Although I like to talk while running, some moments of silence are nice too.

Once we got to where we started, I took note of the distance (around 2.5 miles).  That meant that we would go out 1.75 miles in the other direction.  There were a few people out using the trail, but it wasn't too bad.

We maintained a nice and consistent pace.  Mile 3 was even a crazy fast 7:39.  Ryan handled that well, but I feared a few more of those and he'd fall apart.  I tried to back off our pace a little and it seemed to work.

We crossed Weaversville Road, but had to stop for a bit.  That slowed our overall pace just slightly.  I like the section after that.  It's fun going over the bridges.  I asked a few questions, but I could tell Ryan was working a bit now, so I didn't say too much.

We ended up turning around at 4.25 miles.  It was good to be fairly close to finishing.  We turned around right before Savage Road.  That was good.

My legs felt awesome, but then somewhere around mile 5, they lost their sharpness.  They weren't bad, but not as sharp as they felt earlier.  Maybe the miles were getting to be too much.

Since it was cooler and we were in the shade a lot, I was barely breaking a sweat.  These last two days have really shown me how I've adapted to the heat.  I sweat, but it doesn't bother me too much.  The breeze did help too.  I think the next step might be pushing the pace a little.

We were nearing an 8 minute pace, even after the slow first mile.  However, the Weaversville Road crossing slowed us again.  I jumped over the gates at the road crossings for fun.

It was great being in the final mile of the day and week.  I felt good.  I could sense Ryan was working a bit.  In the last half mile, I pulled ahead slightly, but not too much.  I wanted to pull him along a little faster, not pull away.  I think that worked good.  We finished a solid 6th mile.  Our overall pace was just over 8 minutes.

This was a good way to end the week.  It was nice to run with someone for a second straight day.  It was nice to split up the run too.  I didn't sweat too much either.  Normally, I'm soaked after a 10-15 mile run.  Doing half of that with each run, it wasn't nearly as bad.

This cut back week is over and it is now time to ramp it up.  Tomorrow, is my last big long run before the marathon.  I'm hoping for 23 or 24 miles.  I'd like the pace to be fairly fast.  I might run at Eddyside.  I'm not sure.  I'm dealing with the heat better now, but I still can't run too fast.  It's a challenge.  I might start a little later.

AM Run 7 miles - 54:00 (7:43 pace)
PM Run 6 miles - 48:16 (8:03 pace)

Friday, June 27, 2014

Rejuvenating Run

This summer and the heat have been cranked up a notch in the last couple weeks.  It has been very challenging.  So much so, that I even decided to take a day off yesterday.  I just couldn't get out there and slave through the heat.

Luckily, I had planned all week to run with Kristin today.  I was greatly looking forward to it.  I badly needed some company on a run and she's awesome to talk to.  She didn't have too much time, so we met at Freedom High School, near her house.

The plan for this 2 PM run was to run to all three of the high schools in the Bethlehem Area School District.  I did this as part of my 24 mile run back in the winter.  It is fun and I figured it was about 8 miles total.  We didn't exactly know the best route to do this, so I figured it could end up with more.

Kristin ran from her house to the high school.  We then took off.  Initially, I thought it was going to be hot out, but it was actually nice.  I thought so anyway, Kristin sure didn't.

Even though it wasn't too bad and there was a breeze, I still ran shirtless.  I also wore a headband that I bought.  I think that helped.  I was concerned because we were going to be running in the sun the whole time.  It wasn't too bad though.  I also had a handheld with some Nuun in it.  I'm not sure if that helped or not.

First, I wanted to run by my grandmother's old house.  That was sort of on the way to Bethlehem Catholic High School, so we did that.  We ran by Kristin's house before that.  It was nice seeing my grandmother's old house.  There are a lot of memories there.

I felt good and we were having some great conversation.  The run was amazing and I wasn't thinking about when it would be over for a change.  I didn't even care what our pace was.  I did peek though and it was a little over 8 minutes.

I looked down at my watch near Beca and we were nearly at 3 miles.  That was awesome.  We tried to take as few main roads as possible.  A short time later and we were to our first high school.

We crossed the road and headed to Liberty.  That is fairly close.  I didn't quite know how to get there, so I let Kristin lead.  She surprised me when she stopped at a tree to rest and hydrate.  I thought I was breathing heavier than her and I didn't realize she was struggling.  I walked briefly while she recovered.  It was fine.  She runs in the morning and isn't too used to the heat yet.  I'm not fast, but I guess I have adapted to it.

Another thing that pleased me is that my blistered foot wasn't a problem.  With a band aid on, it held up throughout the run.  That was in the shoes that were giving me problems too.

We ran around the perimeter of Liberty's campus.  I said we could do a lap around the track.  Kristin thought I meant a fast lap.  Instead, we went around the outside of the stadium.

We headed back toward Freedom.  We were over 4 miles into the run.  We took the main road for a bit.  I sort of knew how to get back, but I didn't quite know the roads, so I let Kristin take control.  That didn't work out so well.

She did admit she has a terrible sense of direction.  After stopping briefly again and looping around some more, we finally came out to where were both knew where we were and it wasn't good.  We were by the Peeps factory, much farther than we should've been.

I laughed at how far we had to go to head back.  The good news was that I needed more miles anyway.  I couldn't believe how much this run was flying by and how easy it was.  The pace wasn't bad, but the company was outstanding.  I didn't even think much about the fact that we were running.

At one point, there was a giant hill we were going to turn on.  Kristin didn't want to take it.  I told her we'd be going the same elevation regardless.  The next road over was more gradual and not as bad.

Soon, we were back near her house.  She stopped a road over and I kept going.  I was closing in on 10 miles and feeling pretty good.  I had a nice hill to climb.  I did that and then looped around the Freedom High School parking lot area.  It was perfect as I arrived at my car right at mile 10.  The extra distance wasn't costly at all.  It worked out great.

This was such an excellent run and just what I needed.  I could handle all the running in the heat, if I was only running 5-7 miles.  Going out there for 10-15 everyday on my own is tough though.  I definitely need more runs with friends like this one.  It rejuvenated me and sparked my desire to run again.

I'm at 42 miles now for the week.  It is a cutback week.  I want to run 13 miles on Saturday to end the week.  That would be good.  I'll probably split it into 2 runs.  It would be nice to run with the BCR in the morning.

I'm going to crank it up again on Sunday, when my last big week of marathon training starts.  If I can get a run or two next week with someone else, that will be a huge plus.  Regardless, I have to push through and be strong.

10 miles - 1:22:13 (8:13 pace)   

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Most Humid Day So Far

I thought we've had some hot and humid days this summer.  I was wrong.  Nothing compared to today's weather.  I slacked off and didn't get out until the evening, but that didn't make a difference.

The plan was an easy 10 miles.  I decided to run at the Route 33 Boat Launch.  I wanted to run on the softer stone/dirt trail.  I headed out without a shirt as usual.

I headed toward Freemansburg, on the softer stuff.  I could tell early on that it would be a tough one.  I was going super slow, but still sweating a lot.  The legs felt kind of dead, even though I'm not running that much this week.  I think it is because I'm running in old shoes.  My new shoes gave me a black toenail and blister.  I guess I have to figure something out.

I thought this might be a good location, because I could go 3 different directions.  It definitely would be easier to do a couple short out and backs, but I'm stubborn and like a challenge.  I didn't end up running short segments.

There were a few kids swimming again in the beginning and some people horsing around on personal watercraft in the river.  I saw a bunch of bikers and a few walkers too.  The scenery was nice.  It was just too bad that I couldn't enjoy it much with the heat.

While this section is pretty, it is a lot of nothingness.  It's mile after mile of trail, surrounded by trees and bushes.  The sun wasn't even peaking through late in the day, but I was still hot.

I kept going along slowly.  Most of my miles were over 8 minutes.  I drank from time to time too.  It was good that I had my handheld.  I kept going out farther and farther.  I really wanted to get to 3.5 miles.

I got there and continued on.  I got to Freemansburg.  That was a nice change of pace.  At least it was something else to look at.  There were geese in the canal, but later on, I saw some on the trail.  Four miles was enough, so I turned around at that point.

Of course I like going out farther, but then that means a long way back.  If the weather is nice, it's not bad.  With this humidity, it was awful.  The beginning of the way back seems slightly uphill too.  It was a struggle.

Getting to mile 5 was nice, except that I was only halfway done.  I kept looking at my watch too frequently and was breaking the run down into percentage done and remaining.  That didn't make it much better.

I made it through miles 6 and 7.  Shortly after mile 7, I was at the beginning of the Boat Launch section.  It was a singletrack run back to my car at mile 8.

By now, I wasn't going to stop of course.  I headed out the other direction on the pavement.  I thought about turning around before mile 9, but I kept going.  I passed another runner going back.

It was good to be to 9 miles.  I couldn't believe how slow I was going.  Finally, I was back to the Boat Launch.  It was good to be done, even though the run sucked.

I couldn't believe how soaked I was at the end.  I had to wring out my shorts.  I can't stand when it is this humid.  It is frustrating to know that there are two more months of it left.

I think tomorrow I'll run in the afternoon again.  I'm hoping for 10 miles or maybe more.  I might watch the US soccer game, so maybe I'll run at Sand Island.  I would like to run after dark one of these nights.

10 miles - 1:21:42 (8:10 pace)

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

New Northampton Route

I have really been struggling lately because I'm getting tired of the same routes.  I know them all too well, even though there are many options around here.  Of course, the hot and muggy weather isn't helping either.

It took me a long time to get out there.  Eventually, I did run in the late afternoon.  I had started mapping out some routes in Northampton.  I was hoping to take several different trail options there.  I hoped that maybe I wouldn't get as bored.  When doing that, I noticed that the D&L goes south along the river and is paved for a bit anyway.  I had never realized that before.  We ran there during the half marathon, but it was on the road next to it.

I was at least excited to try this new route and see how far south I could go.  It was in the mid 80s again and humid.  Of course I went shirtless and of course I was soaked by the end of this 10 miler. 

I parked at an elementary school across from Northampton High School.  It was next to their baseball fields.  That meant that I could get some extra distance through town.  I ran out to Main Street to start and then crossed over it.

I went to Route 329 and then turned down Canal Street.  After that, I was on to the D&L.  It is a nice paved section along a park.  There was a row of trees with some shade.  The trail did have some minor up and down.

The first mile was fairly quick.  I wasn't trying to push at all, but I was feeling good and enjoying the change of scenery.  I didn't look at my watch too often at this point.  I continued on.  Some people were hanging out.  Others were getting ready for baseball.  I passed a few walkers and slow runners.  I also crossed paths with a young girl running.

I cruised along.  Some people were even swimming in part of the river.  That sounded nice as I was already sweating.  The paved trail went out about 2 miles.  Then, it ended.  That was what I figured when I looked at the map.

I was encouraged earlier when there was a sign for the D&L to Hanover Township.  I knew it went there, but I wasn't sure how.  After the pavement ended, it was on to a dirt singletrack.  That was awesome.  The river was on one side.  I had lots of shade and the trail was fairly fast.

The only thing that worried me is it was kind of remote and seemed like an area that troublemaking youths would hangout.  I did see some later, but they weren't nearby.  I enjoyed this section a lot and there were some off shoot trails too.

Shortly before 2.5 miles into the run, I the trail became a little overgrown.  I decided to go to an off shoot trail.  When there is less brush, I'll have to run this main part farther.

As I turned off the trail, a guy came running downhill.  I then came out on a railroad track.  I figured that the guy came from somewhere, so I ran down the tracks a bit and found another singletrack.  There were a bunch of trails in there.  It looked like riding trails.  I didn't want to get too lost, so I simply turned around.  I had gone out far enough.

This dirt section was fun, but it did slow me a bit.  I was quite hot too.  The miles seemed to take awhile.  Eventually, I was back on pavement, but still overheating.

I didn't want to go back to my car and only be at 5 miles, so I crossed over the river.  I decided that I would run the D&L Cementon section for a bit.  I got over the road smoothly and was on the trail in no time.

It was very hot in the beginning with no shade.  Not long into the run, I had a massive cliff blocking the sun.  That was a huge relief.  I had run a couple sub 7:30 miles, but was now going a little slower.

I kept doing the math in my head to figure out which mile I'd end up back at my car at.  I kept trying to push another half mile or more.  I saw a couple guys running.  I wasn't feeling all that great.  I was burping my lunch a lot.

Most of the rest of this run had shade, but the sun was peaking in between the trees, so it wasn't as good as the cliff section.  I turned around at 6.1 miles, right before some people that were walking their dogs.

It was good to be headed back.  I was beat though and struggling.  My pace wasn't falling off at least.  However, I was burping and coughing a lot.  I tried to drink more, but that didn't help much.

One good thing was that I was slowly reeling in one of the runners that I saw earlier.  I wasn't trying to catch him, but I was going much faster.  He heard me at one point and turned around.  Shortly after that, I blew past him.  That was a good feeling.

I was now past mile 7, and approaching mile 8 as I crossed over the river.  I didn't want to go back to my car yet, since I was feeling a little better.  Plus, heading there meant some heat running (because of lack of shade).  I decided to go back on the paved canal section.

That was good and I ran out for about half a mile or so.  By now, I'd be almost done when I got back to my car.  I turned around and headed back up the canal.

Near Main Street, I got to mile 9.  It was hot, but my pace wasn't dropping.  I ran along Main Street for a bit.  I was looking for the road to the school, but wasn't sure which one it was.  I figured that it was named differently.

I ended up going past it, so I had to go around the block.  That added some extra distance and it worked out perfectly.  I finished up mile 10 right at my car.  It was a tough workout in the heat, but great to be done.  I'm adapting to the heat now, but I don't think I'll ever get used to it.  I'm always soaked afterward too.

Tomorrow, I'd really like to run hard.  That would require me to get up early and head to Riverview.  I'm hoping that I can do that and then run a second run later in the day.  I think we are supposed to get storms.  It will also be hot and humid the rest of the week.  That is both good (for my heat training) and awful (because I hate it).

10 miles - 1:16:58 (7:42 pace)

Monday, June 23, 2014

Merrill Creek Double Loop

I've changed things up this week.  Since my blister popped, my foot was quite sore yesterday.  I decided to switch my off day to yesterday and get back to running today.  Things were better by today.

Originally, I was going to do a long run today, after the change.  Then, I decided to switch this week around and make it a cutback week.  I ran 80 miles two weeks ago and 90 miles last week, so cutting back is probably a good choice.  Next week will be my last big week before the marathon taper begins, so I'll probably try to hit 90 miles again.  I'll have another long run too.

I wasn't sure where to run today.  I decided to run at Merrill Creek, north of Phillipsburg, New Jersey.  It is a scenic run, that is kind of like a stone trail and then some singletrack too.  It is fast as far as trails go.  I figured it would be relaxing.  It was fun, but quite the challenge.

It was cloudy a lot of the run.  Plus, I was under the trees for a good portion of it.  It was still a little hot and humid.  I went shirtless and my shorts were soaked by the end of the run.

The plan for today was just to open the week with 12 miles.  The rest day was a huge help and the legs felt fresh early on.  I had a decent stone trail and some views.  It starts in the open, but shortly, goes into the woods.

I had several interesting encounters.  One of them occurred in the woods in the first quarter mile.  I came to a deer next to the trail.  Instead of it running of, it kept walking toward me.  I couldn't believe how close I was getting and I started to get a little worried.  It was kind of like we were two runners passing each other in opposite directions.  Finally, at the last minute, I moved over toward the grass and it flinched and went into the woods.  I figured that it wouldn't attack, but it got closer than any deer I've ever seen.

After that, it was on to the first dam.  That is fun running over it with the water right next to you.  The only downside is that the stones are big and it is difficult to run on.  Still, the pace is quite fast.

Before long, I was back into the woods and then to the second dam.  This one is definitely the longest.  It has a great views of the mountains on the opposite of the dam too.  I enjoyed the view.  Some women were hiking and one had a camera.  I almost asked her to take a picture of me running over the dam.

I did like getting off of that stone trail though and on to the singletrack trail section through the woods.  I entered the woods with a pace right around 8 minutes flat.  I knew that I'd be slowing down.

This was fun for a bit.  With the decent speed on the dams, I guess I was moving kind of quickly when I went through this singletrack.  It seemed to go up and down, up and down.  It's not the hardest trail run I've done, but it is more challenging that it seems and it always seems more challenging than I remember.

The singletrack felt more up than down.  I was so happy to get to the third dam.  Even though it sucked, at least it was flat and I could recover.  I went over that and back into the woods briefly.

I was getting kind of tired and I still had around 2 miles left in this loop.  I was through the 4th and final dam.  Now, it was back to another fun singletrack section.  This part wasn't as much up and down.  Instead, it was more rocky and root covered.  My pace had dropped to around 8:15.

I didn't wear trail shoes, so I had to be very careful on this technical section.  A few rocks hurt my feet, but overall it wasn't too bad.  My blister area had hurt a little earlier on, but now it was fine.

After crossing over a bridge, there was more climbing involved.  That was a challenge.  Finally, I got through that and some slightly open areas.  I was back at my car at 5.20 miles, with 1 loop done.  I was hoping for a little more distance, but I would take that.

I very briefly toweled off and drank some water.  It wasn't too hot, so I didn't drink a lot.  I couldn't believe how much the first loop took out of me.  I was going to keep going though.

I began the second loop and the pace was faster on this flat early part.  I still wasn't quite halfway done with this run.  I went over the first dam.

Something interesting happened in the woods between the first and second dams.  I came across more deer in the middle of the trail.  This time, it was a mother with two babies.  I was a little worried that she would protect them.  Instead, she leaped over one of them and ran to one side of the trail, while they ended up on the other side.  I looked back and they didn't reunite when I could see them.

I went over the second dam.  These were getting to be tough.  The uneven surface was beating up my legs.  I headed back into the singletrack again.  This was an uneventful up and down.

I was thrilled to make it to mile 8.  I went over the next two dams and it was on to the rocky section.  By now, my pace was around 8:10.  I ended up pushing a bit.  That almost caused me a problem.  I tripped on a rocky, but luckily I didn't fall.  It would've hurt a lot.  My blistered toe was sore for awhile after that, but it went away.

I passed some hikers near the end of this loop.  I was getting exhausted.  I finished up with this loop slightly faster.  I very quickly toweled off and dropped my handheld.  I was at 10.44 miles.

I had just over 1.5 miles to go.  I decided to run the road out of the park.  It was tough because it went uphill.  I ran out to 10.9 miles and turned around.  I was quite a bit over 11 miles when I got back to the car.  I decided to run on the trail again.

This first section of trail wasn't too bad and I ran it fairly fast.  Before I knew it, I turned around and headed back.  I finished up at 12 miles and had a short walk back.  It was a tough run, but a lot of fun and very productive.  I will certainly go back there plenty of times.

Tomorrow, I'd like to do some speedwork.  Hopefully, I can run hard in the morning.  I really need to get up and push myself a little.  I'm not sure if I'd do a tempo run or repeats or what, but I need a few more faster runs.  I might add a short evening run too.  I don't really want to go over 65 miles this week.  That would be a productive week.

12 miles - 1:38:20 (8:12 pace)

Saturday, June 21, 2014

Wilson Partners in Education 5k and 90 Mile Week

It was Saturday morning and I decided that I would race a 5k.  This always seems like a good idea during the week.  Then, when I wake up on race day, I say, "this sucks, I don't want to run fast today."  I was running the Wilson Partner's in Education 5k at Wilson High School.  This race was important to me because it was my first comeback race in 2009.  Obviously, I'd be doing much better this time around.

I got there very early.  I was one of the first to register for the day.  It was relatively cool, but it is still summer.  I warmed up in a shirt.  I got there early to run the entire course.  I needed miles and I wanted to become familiar with it.

The course was well marked.  I took it easy.  The first half mile wasn't tough.  Then, I got to a long and gradual hill.  I forgot that this course was challenging.  I was glad to get up this hill, near Easton Hospital.

I didn't push at all, but the miles did get progressively faster.  I've put in a ton of miles this week and the legs were feeling it.  They weren't sharp at all.  I kept going though and they at least did loosen up a bit.

The 2nd mile of the route was much nicer and I knew that it would be faster.  The 3rd mile was in between the first two.  It was easier than the first, but harder than the second.  I finished my warmup at 3 miles, at the stadium track.  As I was walking around the track, I saw my friend Megan warming up.

I probably did start the warm up earlier than I should've.  I had almost a half hour between the end of it and the race.  I did some strides to keep loose.  The legs felt much better on the track.

I lined up around the 2nd row in the race.  There were a bunch of high school and college runners in the front.  I let them go early, so that I didn't run too fast.  I was behind Megan for a bit.

Even though the first half mile was good, I knew to save something for the hill.  Before the hill, my pace was 6:02.  That was odd, because it felt harder than my 5:40 opening mile 2 weeks ago.  I was holding back and still struggling.

I had passed Megan, but she put the hammer down on the uphill and passed me back.  It was good to pace off of her though.  I also battled with a guy in my age group.  During the race, I thought he was another high school kid.

I came through the first mile at 6:16.  Since I ran well on pavement 2 weeks ago, I was hoping for better than that.  Of course, this route was difficult.  That surely didn't help.

I had got by Megan again on the flatter part of the course or the next smaller uphill.  I don't remember.  I passed the guy in my age group then too.  He flew past me once we went downhill though.  I couldn't stay with him either.

We crossed the road and ran through the other neighborhood.  By 1.5 miles, I was struggling and stuck running alone.  I tried to just be consistent and smart.  I didn't want to push too hard or I'd really fall off.  With all the flat and downhill, mile 2 was a 6:00.

The 3rd mile was a struggle.  There was some uphill and I was getting a side stitch.  At the road crossings, I could tell I had a gap on whoever was behind me.  I guess it was Megan at that point.  She was winning the women's race.

I was slowly catching some of the young guys in front of me.  They were falling off as we got to the high school.  Before long, I was on the track and on their heels.  They saw me and picked it up.  I had almost run the wrong way on the track, because they had us go the opposite way of normal.  At least that meant only 3/4 of a lap left.

As I rounded the last turn, I could see the clock on the scoreboard.  I knew I'd be super close to breaking 19 minutes.  I pushed and pushed, but it wasn't enough.  I came in at 19:00.  It would've been nice to be one second faster.

I wasn't that happy, but I can't say I was too disappointed either.  I ran hard and got a good workout.  I finished 2nd in my age group.  I thought maybe I could run faster, but definitely not on this challenging course.  It wasn't too hot, but hot enough to have some impact.  My legs were beat too.  I do wonder what I could run on a flatter course, in cooler weather and with fresh legs.  Maybe in the fall I'll find out.

After the run, I ran my cool down with Megan.  We went through town and ran over 2 miles total.  It was nice to talk about training and such.  The pace was decent too.

Since I was looking for 90 miles for the week, I needed another run.  The plan was 5 more easy miles.  It didn't quite workout that way.

I decided to head to the Saucon Rail Trail.  I knew of a trailhead on Reading Drive, but I didn't quite know how to get there.  I found it though.  I wanted to run there because it was in the middle of the trail and I could go out and back each direction.  There weren't too many road crossings in that area either.

I started off heading what I guess would be considered south.  Two women ran by earlier.  I made it a game to catch them, even though I felt awful.  The legs were beat and I had to break them in.  Eventually, I was able to get them going.

I caught the first woman first, as she was slower than the other one.  I blew by both of them with a sub 8 minute mile.  There were a lot of people out, either walking, biking or running.  It was nice to feed off of people.

I continued to run solid and watched the pace get faster.  I crossed one road and kept getting out slightly farther.  Finally, at 1.85 miles, I turned around.

There was a young girl that was about a quarter mile ahead of me.  She wasn't that fast, but was running at a decent pace.  It took time to close the gap.  I was happy to make it through mile 2.  I pushed more and more to catch the girl, but she stopped right before a road crossing.

With that rabbit, I ran a 6:46 mile 3.  I was happy with that and feeling good now.  The only thing I didn't enjoy is how loose the stone trail felt in spots.  That was especially true in the township's newer section.  I ran past my car's parking lot at 3.7 miles.

I thought about the fact that I was approaching 89 miles for the week.  I hit that a little past my car with a 6:55 mile.  I got a little faster after that, as I went downhill.  I wasn't going too hard yet though.  It was more like a moderate pace.  It was good running anyway.

I took my watch off in the final mile.  I turned around at 4.45 miles, right before some walkers.  I had another lady to chase and again, I really pushed it.  I caught and passed her fairly quickly.

I was going so fast in the final mile that I ended up passing some bikers.  I was glad that they got out of my way.  I really pushed in the last half mile and ended with a 6:34 mile.  Not a bad way to end the week.

I was thrilled to be done with my 90 mile week.  It was my first ever.  I hope to do many more.  I don't feel too bad, but I am a little slow and beat up.

My last really challenging week before the marathon, starts tomorrow.  I want at least 80 miles, but I'd love to hit 90 again.  That would be a solid way to start the taper.  Tomorrow, I'll likely run 22 or 23 miles at Eddyside with Mertz in the morning.  That will be a good way to kick off the week.

Warm up 3 miles - 23:46 (7:55 pace)
Race 3.09 miles - 19:00 (6:09 pace)
Cool down 2.17 miles - 16:33 (7:38 pace)
Afternoon Run 5 miles - 35:13 (7:02 pace)

Friday, June 20, 2014

Closing in on 80

Last week, I ran 80 miles.  I've done that a few times before.  I started this week off so well, that I made 90 miles a goal.  I'll get there, but it definitely hasn't been easy.

The hard part is that I've had no one to run with in the mornings to get me to do another 6-7 mile run.  That would've been huge, especially today, when I slept in.  I still needed 23 miles before today.

The weather was nice and cool, at least for this time of year.  I still knew that I'd be hot and sweaty in the afternoon, so I ran shirtless.  That was a good choice.

I wanted a softer surface today, so I opted to go to the Route 33 Boat Launch.  I would run on the stone/dirt trail toward Freemansburg.  Since I'm having blister problems, I went with my older shoes.  They seemed to feel much better and more roomy.  I didn't have any issues with that today.

I headed out nice and easy.  In the beginning, a bunch of kids were jumping off of a tree and into the Lehigh River.  I got very annoyed in this narrow singletrack section.  Three sets of bikers went past me and I had to move for them.  I saw some more bikers later on, but really not that many.  There should not have been so many in such a short stretch.

As usual, mile 1 was slow and I got faster.  My body definitely wasn't feeling great.  I can't say it was terrible either.  I wasn't exactly sore, my legs just felt dead.  I think that was due to the running, plus lifting weights last night too.

I cruised along, past people and dogs.  You can't see the river too often in this section, unless you really look over.  A lot of the run looks the same.  I really wanted 13 miles today, so I was hoping to go out 6.5 miles.  I knew that that would take me out very far though.

I got to miles 2 and 3.  Things were getting a little faster and I began running sub 8 minute miles.  Still, I didn't feel all that great.  It became obvious that I would turn around early.

After several miles of everything looking the same, there was finally a picnic bench and a clear view of the river.  I knew I was near Freemansburg.  I started running that stretch.

Most of the trail had been shaded up to that point, but now, I was in the sun.  That was tricky.  I tried to tell myself to slow down.  I hit mile 4 and wanted to keep going.  I hoped to make it to 4.5 miles at least.

There were a lot of geese as I ran this section.  Shortly after mile 4, I felt like there were too many to run through.  I turned around at 4.1 miles.  I'd be over 8 miles when I got back to the car anyway.

I kept going and was headed back now.  It was a relief to get back into the shade.  With my legs feeling kind of crappy, the miles clicked off slowly.  I knew I had to focus on getting back to the car and not worry about any other mileage.

Eventually, I got to miles 5, 6 and 7.  I could tell that I was getting closer and closer to the Route 33 Boat Launch.  I didn't think I was picking the pace up, but it looks like I got faster.  The kids were gone from the swimming hole.

I got back to the parking lot and was over mile 8.  The parking lot was exposed to the sun and it was hot.  I was fairly soaked by this point, although it was mostly just my chest.

I decided to head onto the paved trail.  I'd run out to mile 9.2 and turn around and have a brief walk back when I hit mile 10.  Then, I'd call it a day.  My legs just didn't have more than that and it was still a productive day.

It seemed a little while until I got to the turnaround point.  I did and then I cruised on back.  I always enjoy looking at my watch frequently in the last mile.  I try to take it off an hold it in that final mile too.  That is a symbol that I am nearly done.  Finally, I was done after a fairly quick final mile.

I hoped to run more and feel better, but the run was still solid.  I wish I could've had a second run in for the day, but I ran out of time.  I went to a baseball game in the evening.  I'll just have to pick it up tomorrow.

Speaking of tomorrow, I plan to run the Wilson Partners in Education 5k at Wilson High School.  That was my first comeback race way back in 2009.  I'm quite beat up now, so I don't know how well I'll run, but it will definitely be much faster than that day.  I may either run home from the race or run later on for extra mileage.  I need 13 total miles tomorrow, to reach 90 for the week.  That would be my first 90 mile week ever.

10 miles - 1:19:00 (7:54 pace)

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Slatington Post Rain Run

Today was a tricky day.  It wasn't raining hard, but it was raining almost all day.  I thought about maybe breaking my run up into two short runs.  I decided to wait it out.  Finally, there was a break around dinner time.  That meant that I had to try to get 12 to 15 miles done in one shot.  I didn't get a second run in yesterday, like I wanted to.

I love all the running options around here.  That said, when I plan on doing a run that is going to take over an hour and a half, I often have trouble settling in on a place.  I've put in so many miles on every rail trail and such in the LV, that I know them quite well.  If I had a running partner, that would be a big help.

I started driving to the D&L Trail at Cove Road.  Then, I changed my mind and decided to head farther up, into Slatington.  I've run that section fairly often too, but I haven't run the adjacent Slate Heritage Trail very much.   Not often enough to know the ins and outs of it anyway.  It is a nice and paved trail too.  I've never taken it to the end either.

It seemed cool and breezy when I started out.  I decided to wear a singlet and shorts.  That was probably a mistake.  I could've went shirtless.  I should just run shirtless for the remainder of the summer, since I sweat so much.

I headed out on the Slate Heritage Trail.  The legs felt slightly funny the beginning, but overall they are holding up pretty well.  I have to wonder if the weight training that I've been doing is paying off.

This section begins with some rolling hills.  It is quite scenic, along the creek.  It goes through Slatington, so you'd think it would be busy, but this first time out it was rather quiet.

It wasn't too long and I ran out of pavement.  It was still humid, so I was glad for the shade.  I was now on to the stone section.  I went under the PA Turnpike.  I crossed a road and shortly after that, another run.

I couldn't remember where I had stopped, but then I got to that part.  It was a section with a gate and the trail went through woods.  This part was very remote and went near a creek.  It was nice and peaceful and also shaded.  I enjoyed it.

I was happy to get to mile 3.  I saw that the trail went behind some houses, so I kept going.  I saw a dead frog on the trail.  Eventually, I came to some ball fields and a vacant park.  I figured that this must be the end of the trail.  I couldn't quite recall how far out it was supposed to go.

I then continued on a small road.  I wanted to get to 3.5 miles before turning around.  As I realized that there were no cars on this road, I kept going.  I ran out and eventually the road went next to some farm fields.  Still, there wasn't a car and this was a pretty wide road.

Finally, at mile 4, I turned around.  I knew when I got back that I would be over halfway done with the run.  That was great.  On the way back, I saw 2 cars on this road.  Still, that was barely anyone.

I went back and saw some kids will towels by the park.  I guess they were swimming in the creek.  I saw almost no one until I was back near Slatington.  There is this little dirt bike course next to the trail and I noticed that a guy was smoothing it out with a tractor.  I guess they are serious.

It wasn't too long and I was back Slatington.  I felt good as I neared mile 8.  I decided why not keep running.  I headed south on the D&L.

My singlet had been soaked for awhile and by now my shorts were getting very wet too.  They were grey and you could see where I was sweating.  After awhile, they were completely soaked and it didn't look too bad.  It felt awful though.

I was clicking off fairly consistent miles.  The pace was slightly under 8 minutes overall.  There was more shade on this section.  There are some cliffs along the trail that blocked out the setting sun.  It was great.

I was going to go out to mile 10, but didn't quite make it that far.  I came up behind a lady that was running and just decided to head back.  I wasn't thirsty, but I also didn't have much water.

This section of the trail was fairly busy, now it was the early evening too.  Mostly, it was bike riders and some families.  It wasn't too long and I was back to my car.  I was at 11.4 miles.

I was completely soaked, so I dropped off my singlet, toweled off briefly and grabbed more water.  I had less than 4 miles to do.  I decided to go back on to the paved Slate Heritage Trail.

I cruised along on there and felt pretty good.  The sun was even closer to setting now and it was certainly much cooler.  I tried to enjoy myself and focus on getting to the turnaround.

I wanted to at least get out a mile.  After I did that, I kept adding a bit here and there.  I continued on until I went over the bridge and on to the stone section.  That was mile 13.15.

I had less than 2 miles to go and I was also going downhill. I felt good, so I picked it up slightly.  Most of my miles were under 8 minutes and fairly consistent.  Mile 14 was a 7:37.

I got back to Slatington with just a short distance to go.  I ran south on the D&L again, to finish up.  This final mile was a 7:29.  I certainly didn't fall off.  It was another productive run.  Even if it wasn't that hot, it was quite humid.

I definitely need to watch my toe carefully.  I just got new shoes and they are causing my black toenail.  I love these shoes though, so I might have to buy another pair, with a wider width.  Maybe that will work.  It doesn't bother me too much during the run, but it is a bit of a problem afterward.  I thought wearing my toe socks helped today and that so did running on some stone sections, but I guess they didn't do much.

I'm now done with 67 miles for the week.  Again, I'm not running with Kelley in the morning.  That is too bad because it would be a huge help.  I'd like to run twice tomorrow.  That definitely can happen if I drag myself out of bed.  I still have some work to get to 90 miles for the week, but it is well within reach, especially if I put in a big day tomorrow.

15 miles - 1:58:28 (7:54 pace)

More Heat

Wednesday was just another steamy day.  Tuesday had been too, but I took a much needed day off.  Since I didn't work on Wednesday, I got out for the heat filled run at around 11 AM.  I headed to Riverview Park, hoping for like 10+ miles.

I made sure to start out nice and easy.  The first mile usually doesn't feel too bad.  Then, the next couple miles I start to get sweaty and it gets worse.  Then, I get used to it and it kind of isn't as bad any more.

I went shirtless of course and brought along my handheld.  I headed out toward Easton.  The one nice thing is that there is quite a bit of shade on this section.  I knew part of the course along the canal would be hot though.

I started slow and merely tried to stay consistent.  It was so hot that even the geese were actually in the water for a change.  The one nice thing is that even with the temperature in the upper 80s and a lot of humidity, at least there was a breeze.  That helped and has helped a lot of the beginning of this summer.

I continued to cruise along.  I actually didn't drink all that much.  I'm kind of getting used to running in the heat without taking in too much water.  I should probably drink more.

The shade made a big difference and the final mile to mile and a half before the turnaround was very helpful.  I enjoyed the scenery.  I did hear a loud horn, that sounded like it could be from a boat, but I never didn't figure out what it was.

Before long, I was heading over the river and toward downtown Easton.  I decided to just continue on.  Even though it was hot, I ran along Larry Holmes Drive.  I wanted to open with some additional mileage.  I came to 3.5 miles just before the Route 22 Bridge.

I headed back through the unshaded section.  I couldn't wait to get back into the shade.  It wasn't too long and I was there.  At times, I did feel slightly lightheaded, but it wasn't too bad.

I came back running pretty consistent times.  I can't run too hard, but I'm learning how to stay solid.  Maybe later in the summer, I'll even be able to run faster.

After the first few miles were over 8 minutes, I began running mostly sub 8 minute miles.  When I got to Hugh Moore Park, I decided to loop around the park.  That was a nice way to add a mile to the run.

I got back to my car for a short break at 8.22 miles.  I quickly toweled off and drank some more.  I wasn't feeling too bad, so I wanted to keep going.

This time, I headed toward the Route 33 Boat Launch.  I know that this section is shaded, but I wasn't sure if I'd have cover at this point.  Thankfully, I did and things worked out good.  

I arrived at the Boat Launch almost exactly at 2 miles from my car.  That was a perfect way to get me to 12 miles total.  Going into the run, I wasn't sure how long I'd run, but now I decided on 12 miles.  That would be long enough in the heat.

This section had much more people than the early part of my run.  I even saw another guy running slowly.  I felt pretty good, so I picked it up slightly over the last 2 miles.  Mile 11 was a 7:48 and Mile 12 was a very solid 7:26.  I still wasn't pushing hard during those 2 miles.

It was good to be done and I think I'm getting used to the heat.  I am having an issue with a black toenail.  It has bothered me slightly during the runs and I'll have to keep an eye out for it.  I've never had one before.

I'm not sure on my plan for Thursday, but obviously it will include plenty of running.  I need 38 miles to hit 90 for the week.  I wanted to run with Kelley in the morning, but she is sick.  I guess I'll run on my own, but no idea where at.

12 miles - 1:35:01 (7:55 pace)

Monday, June 16, 2014

Turning Up the Heat

We've had a couple hot days so far this year, but today was definitely a bit more.  It got near 90 degrees and while I was out for my run in the afternoon, it was definitely in the upper 80s.  I need to try to adapt to the heat for my marathon next month.

The plan was to run 15 miles.  With the heat and having run 25 miles yesterday, I wasn't sure what I could do.  I did feel good beforehand though.  I went to the Ironton Rail Trail, to try something different.  I seem to fair better on long runs on pavement.  Running on stone trails does beat me up a little bit.

I parked in the main lot.  Of course I went shirtless and carried a handheld.  This time, I ran without a visor or anything else on my head.  The visor does tend to make me too hot.

The main paved loop is about 5.3 miles long.  I didn't want to run it 3 times, so I elected to do something different.  I headed out on the spur loop.  It is an out and back section right off the main trail near the parking lot.  It is a stone path and more remote than the main section.

I figured the change of scenery would help in the early beginning of the run and it did.  I didn't even look at my watch until 1.08 miles into the run.  That is rare for me.  Some of this early part of the run was in the sun.  That made it hot.

I didn't care at all about the pace.  I just wanted to try to run super easy, adapt to the heat and not fall off too much.  That was easier said then done. 

This spur section runs along an industrial area.  One park is next to a closed cement plant.  There's a creek next to it.  A couple teens were swimming in there.  I'm not sure I'd want to go in the water near the plant, but not my choice.  Not much else was happening on this section.  A few bikers and walkers here and there, but otherwise, I mostly had the path to myself.

I continued to rarely look at my watch.  I tried to enjoy the run as much as I could in the heat.  I knew it would be a long day.  Even with the easy running, I was sweating pretty good.  Eventually, the trail ends.  One plus though is that it looks like they put up a new bridge there, so maybe they will be extending that section soon.

I came back and had gone out nearly 3 miles.  That was a good start.  I was happy to click off every mile.  Most of my miles were around the 8 minute mark.  That wasn't too bad.

I got back on the main loop in no time.  It was nice to be on pavement again.  I was over a third of the way done with the run now.  I'd have about 5 miles left to get back to my car.  I wanted to run a longer segment first and then stop for a shorter finish.

This loop had a lot of shade, especially throughout this first section.  That made a huge difference.  I adapted to the heat somewhat.  There was even a slight breeze too.  A bunch of families were out.  Not too many people were dumb enough to be running and I'm sure none were planning to run for 2 hours in this weather.

The back half of this loop has an open section.  That was unbelievably hot.  I struggled there.  I hustled as much as I could to get back into the shade.  The heat took its toll though.  There was also some slight uphill that caused me trouble.

It was hard to believe at 7.5 miles that I was only halfway done.  Miles 8 and 9 got a little better.  I guess I started to adjust and I could see the finish line, although it was still off in the distance.  I tried to just focus on finishing the loop.

The most difficult part of the loop was the final mile.  It was a long, gradual uphill.  In the heat and with nearly 10 miles under my belt, it was a struggle.  The shade was gone too.  I sputtered in to the parking lot with an 8 minute flat pace for 10.25 miles.

The short break at my car was much needed.  My water was warm now, so getting fresh water was a huge plus.  I dried myself off too.  Still, I was very hot.  I strongly considered stopping at that point.

I kept going though and ran the loop in the counterclockwise direction again.  I wasn't sure if I could get to 15 miles, but I figured I'd be happy with every additional mile that I put in.  It was a huge struggle in this first mile after I restarted.  I really didn't think I'd finish at that point.

I ran past a small kid on his bike with his dad following.  That was kind of funny.  I kept going and tried to just focus on the turnaround point, even though I didn't know quite where that was.  I kept going and going through the neighborhood and by a community pool.  I went in the hot section for a bit and finally turned around right before passing another runner (at mile 12.35).

I wasn't feeling too bad right before the turnaround.  That is because I was running slightly downhill.  Now, I had to battle slightly uphill.  I kept going.  Hitting mile 13 and then the half marathon point was a huge boost.

I had to stop briefly at two different road crossings.  At least a few cars let me go.  The brief starting and stopping was taking its toll.  I had slowed a bit during this segment, but at least I wasn't fall off much.  I stayed fairly consistent, albeit slow.  My legs weren't too sore.

Climbing the last short hill back to the parking lot was difficult.  Luckily, I was almost done.  I ran out to the road and only had a short distance to go.  I went on the sidewalk briefly and turned around and finished the 15 miles.

What a tough day, but it was great to battle through the heat.  This will definitely make me stronger.  Whether I'll be faster or not, well that remains to be seen.  I've been trying to tell myself that I really don't want to get to Boston bad enough, but I guess I'm lying if I can suffer through a day like today.

I've put in 40 miles in the last two days and I believe 120 miles in the last 9 days.  Tomorrow, is a much needed day off.  Either on Wednesday or Thursday morning, I'd like to get up early and run hard.  I need a good, hard workout in cooler weather.  I'm hoping to finish the week with 85 or more miles.  So far, so good as I'm almost halfway there.

15 miles - 2:01:35 (8:06 pace)

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Long Day Double

Last week was a busy week.  This week, I started it off with another big day.  I had a 20 miler scheduled.  I wanted to push this a bit, so I planned to meet up with Mertz and his crew at Eddyside at 7:30 in the morning.

I would've been there on time, but I had to go to the bathroom at the last minute.  Last time I was there, there were no portable bathrooms, so I headed to a gas station on Larry Holmes Drive.  I sent Mertz a text saying that I'd be late, but I figured he probably wouldn't get it.  Of course there were bathrooms there.  I also so Mertz running out as I was driving up.

When I got there, two other guys were there.  I thought one of them was his friend Rich, but I didn't know the other guy.  I was correct.  They were stretching and I didn't really know how long it would take, so I just took off.  I had 20 miles to do and was already behind.  I didn't want to waste any more time.

It seemed cool at the start, so I wore a short sleeve shirt and my compression pants.  I also had on my visor.  That gear made me hot as the run progressed.

I started off pretty comfortable as I headed to downtown Easton.  I was planning on at least two out and back segments.  I had a decent 7:34 first mile.  They are doing work under the Route 22 Bridge, so I took a longer route, following the detour.  That would add some distance.

I tried to gradually pick it up.  It was a nice and scenic run along the Delaware River and then the Lehigh River.  As I went down the path, I saw Rich and the other guy above me.  I didn't try to pick up the pace, but I guess I did.  The 3rd and 4th miles were both under 7 minutes.  It didn't seem too hard.

Somewhere before the 4th mile, I saw Mertz heading back.  He was cruising.  By now, I could tell that I needed to slow it down a bit.  It was good to hit 4 miles and turn around.  I thought about going out farther, but elected not to.

On the way back, I did back the pace off.  I was getting hot regardless.  My miles were just over 7 minutes each.  That's still around goal marathon pace, so I was happy. 

I got very lucky as I took the construction detour.  I came under a bridge and for some reason, I thought it was a stop sign that the opposing traffic had and not a stoplight.  I didn't even look and I darted right out in front of a car.  I was narrowly missed.  I got very lucky.  Needless to say, I paid more attention after that.

I cruised on back to the car.  When I was on the sidewalk section back, I saw the three guys heading back out for their 2nd segment.  I was glad that they didn't wait for me, because there is no way I would've kept up.  I can hang with Mertz for awhile in the cold, but this heat and humidity kills me.

I got back to the car at mile 8.  It was about a 7:10 pace overall.  Not bad, but I was very beat and sweaty.  I took some extra time to dry off and then ate some GU Chomps and drank some water.  The break was much needed.

I knew that I would never last 20 miles if I didn't slow down a bit.  I did that by a few seconds per mile.  I actually dropped off my visor and shirt in the car.  Now, all I had on was no shirt and compression pants.  I wasn't too comfortable wearing so little, but I was hot, so I did it anyway.  I did actually cool off in the beginning.

In the sun, things were tough.  They got a little better in the shade.  I went back along Larry Holmes Drive again and over the river.  On the other side, I saw two friends, Frank and Dave.  Then a few minutes later, Elyssia.  Seeing other people you know, even if you don't run with them, is a nice boost.  Having the faster guys running around helped me go faster too, even though I was alone.

Even with the slower pace, the heat and humidity was getting to me.  I just tried to focus on getting to the turnaround.  I wanted to go out to 6 miles from the start, but I figured that that would be too far.  Right at mile 4 of this segment, I saw Mertz and then the other guys not too far behind.  I was about 2 miles behind I guess.

Rich was encouraging, but I told him I felt like crap.  I sputtered along, with my miles now flirting with 7:30.  I kept at it though.  I ended up going to the loopy part of Hugh Moore Park.  I turned around slightly short of where I wanted to.  It was mile 12.8.

I came back and struggled with the short hills.  Getting to the half marathon point was tough, but seeing that my overall pace was still around 7:15, made me happy.  Still, I was slipping.  I focused on getting to mile 15.

Seeing that I was getting closer and closer to Easton helped a lot.  I just tried to take it a mile at a time.  I thought about the fact that I ran 50 miles in one day a few weeks ago.  I figured I could survive 5 or 6 more miles.  Plus, I only had to go around 17.5 miles and I would be at my car again.

I went through Easton and headed back toward Eddyside.  Although my pace had dropped slightly, it really wasn't falling off much.  I finally made it back to my car around 17.67 miles.  I was exhausted.  Mertz and the crew were finished with their run and hanging out for a bit.  I talked to them briefly, dried off and got more water.  I had to get back out there.  The pace was still under 7:20.

I headed back out on the sidewalk.  I don't like running on sidewalk, but I think the course I'm running next month has some of it.  I might as well get used to it.  I went until this was over and then headed up the street a bit.  I came back slowly.  My overall pace slowed, but it wasn't too bad.  It was great to get back to the park and be done with 20 miles.

I was amazed at how I felt afterward.  I was tired and sweaty, but the legs felt pretty good.  There was only minor soreness.  I think back to last spring when a 17 miler nearly killed me.  I am so much stronger now.  I wonder if weight training is helping too.

I was happy with my overall pace of 7:22.  I wish I could've been a little more consistent with it.  In the winter, I can go too hard and not fall off too bad.  In the summer, that crash comes quickly for me.

Almost immediately after the run, I thought about doing a shorter run in the evening.  I recovered well throughout the day and decided to give it a go.  I headed to the Nor-Bath Trail after 7 PM.  Lately, I've been starting in the middle of the trail.  This time, I started on the end closest to my house.

I went without a shirt and that helped.  I still did sweat enough.  It was humid out, but also kind of cool.  I couldn't complain too much.  It could be worse.

I headed out and felt very good.  Sometimes a second workout is slow.  I felt good for this one though.  The first mile was pretty solid.  Amazingly, I made it over Airport Road without much trouble.

The big issue was the bugs.  They were everywhere.  One even hurt my head.  I was itching like crazy.  I could see them so well in the sunlight.  I decided to put on my sunglasses and keep my mouth closed as much as I could.  I saw couple running the other way and they were swatting at the bugs too. 

There were quite a few people out on the trail.  Most of them were biking.  The legs felt good as I hit the turnaround point.  I didn't want to cross Weaversville Road, so I turned around at 2.47 miles.

Heading back was nice.  Either the bugs had left or I couldn't see them without the sunlight's reflection.  The pace was slightly over 8 minutes per mile.  I had no reason to push it.

I focused on getting to mile 3 and then mile 4.  That 4th mile was slightly under 8 minutes and caused my overall pace to dip.  I felt good in the last mile.  I flew over Airport Road.  I finished up at the end of the path.  This mile was an even faster 7:24.  That brought my overall pace under 8 minutes.

I was a little sore after the run, but still not too bad.  I was thrilled to open the week with 25 total miles.  That's a good start, especially since this week will be kind of hectic.  I'm hoping to run a few miles in the morning.  I plan to run in the afternoon tomorrow too.  I'm thinking 10 to 15 miles total.  Normally, I take Mondays off, but I think it is better to run tomorrow and take Tuesday off.  Then, I can go to an IndyCar test at Pocono on Tuesday.  I'd pick it back up again on Wednesday.

AM Run 20 miles - 2:27:23 (7:22 pace)
PM Run 5 miles - 39:53 (7:58 pace)

Saturday, June 14, 2014

Getting to 80

Thanks to a big day yesterday, I didn't have to run too much today.  I needed 8 miles to get to 80 for the week.  I got up to run with BCR.  I couldn't decide what to do.  Then, I realized that I didn't like where they were running (Plainfield) and didn't want to get stuck running those miles alone.

I slept a little longer and then watched some of the 24 Hours of Le Mans.  After some lunch, I headed to the Parkway in Allentown.  That is a nice place to run and it is usually very active.  The loop is about 10k long, so I'd have to add a little distance.

It was cool and breezy today.  I still went with a sleeveless shirt.  I was sweating by the end, but not too bad.  I wore my visor again today.  I could definitely take this weather all summer.  I didn't even need my sunglasses.

I started running from the LVRR Clubhouse.  I ran the loop in a counterclockwise direction.  I felt awful at the start.  Yesterday's 22 miles took their toll.  Add on to that that I lifted some weights afterward, and the legs were quite sore.  Luckily, I had no goal pace.

I didn't enjoy this run much.  The stone trail isn't a lot of fun on beat up legs.  At least the start was flat.  I went along.  The first mile seemed like forever.

This path is slightly hilly.  None of them were too bad and I was able to go over them without a lot of trouble.  I saw a cute woman as I got to the bridge by the clubhouse.  There were a few runs, walkers and bikers, but really not as many people as I expected.

At one point, I saw a deer go slowly across the trail.  That was weird because I wasn't too far behind another runner.  I guess that guy didn't scare the deer.  I never did see the deer once it went back into the woods.

The pace got slightly quicker, as usual.  I got to the steep Fish Hatchery Hill right around mile 4.  I went up that slowly.  It is never an easy hill, but I managed it on the slower pace.  I flew down the backside and nearly ran into a woman who moved to avoid a washed out section.

Since I needed more mileage, I decided to cross Fish Hatchery Road.  There is a short extension there.  I went out and back until it started to climb.  That got me an extra .4 miles.

I headed back and was running around 7:40 paced miles.  The legs still didn't feel great, but I dealt with it.  It wasn't too long until I was back to the Clubhouse.  I got back to my car at 6.6 miles.

I had 1.4 miles to go.  I needed to go out and come back.  I ran out until almost the Robin Hood Bridge.  I then turned around.  I came back slowly.  When I got back to the start, I had a short distance to go.  I ran over the bridge and kept going on the road.  I finished with mile 8.

This wasn't a great run, but it was good to be done.  I'm glad to finish a tough week.  Hopefully I can bounce back from it.  I finished the week with exactly an 8:00 pace per mile overall.

I'm planning on meeting Chris at Eddyside for a run in the morning.  I hope to put 80 more miles in the coming week.  My schedule is busy, so that will be tough.

8 miles - 1:02:03 (7:45 pace)

Friday, June 13, 2014

Putting in a Big Day in the Humidity

I needed 30 miles over the final two days of the week, to get to 80 miles total.  I knew that that could be a tall task, especially with the weather forecast calling for rain all day.  I did manage to luck out.  I figured that I could probably get a window to run a few miles anyway.

I didn't work and it rained early in the morning, but cleared out by noon.  I knew this was my window, so I got out there to run, just after eating.  I went to Jacobsburg and was hoping to run 15 miles.  However, it was now hot and humid and I wasn't sure what I could handle.

I wore shorts and went shirtless.  I tried out my new sweatband.  I also put a lot of stuff on the chafed areas and they now seem a lot better.  I still had plenty to complain about.

Since I wasn't sure what I could handle.  I walked some of the short, easy hills in the beginning.  I wanted to be conservative.  I would need to run around most of the park, so I elected to get the open field section over with first.

The beginning of these summer runs are just terrible.  Only about a mile in and I was already dripping with sweat.  I had walked a lot by that point too.  After walking the uphill, it was to the open field.  That was just brutal with the sun blazing.  I moved forward though.

I think I might've seen a deer's tail in this part.  I definitely did see 2 groundhogs.  I was glad that the second part of this loop is downhill.  That made things a little better.  I could've climbed the hill behind the new building, to add mileage.  Instead, I went straight back to the parking lot.  That was 3.5 miles.

My next plan was to run the big loop around the park that I normally do.  I figured that that would get me around 10 miles and if I went up the hill, even more.  I walked here and there again.  I was in no hurry.

I felt a little better now that I got used to the heat and also was in the shade.  There was a bit of a breeze.  However, I was still sweating like crazy and soaked by about 50 minutes into the run. 

A lot of the run was uneventful.  I tried to run a lot.  With all of the rain, I knew the normally muddy section would be a blast.  It was a lot of fun.  I cruised through it.

The miles do seem kind of quick when running on a trail.  I just don't look at my watch often.  That said, I do know this trail too well, so it isn't as quick as other trails would be.

When I was across from the powerline, I saw a guy running up that trail.  I was planning on walking it, since it is exposed to the sun.  I thought I might have to run it with him doing that though.  However, he ended up coming down it a short time later.

I did walk up it.  I walked until I got into the shade.  That slowed my overall time, but I knew I'd have some fast downhill coming.  I couldn't believe that when I hit 7.5 miles, I was only halfway to 15.  The run was moving by at a decent clip, but I still had well over an hour left and I was soaked.  I definitely don't enjoy summer running.

I came down the hill and cut a lot of time.  I saw some mountain bikers.  There were quite a few people out.  Not too many on the back part, mostly walkers near the main area.  I got back to the road somewhere around mile 9.

I ran on the road briefly and then back on the trail.  A truck was coming right before the trail and I slipped when I went on it.  At least I didn't fall and nothing was hurt.  I just stretched out a bit.

I needed more mileage, so this time I ran up the hill.  Actually, I walked the hill and ran the rest.  I love the ridge section.  I passed a guy and his dog there and he commented on how well I was running.  I didn't feel that way.  By then, I was sluggish and tiring quite a bit.  At least I enjoyed myself.  I crossed the creek and got back to the other side.  When I ended the loop, I was a little over 11 miles.

I made my one rare stop at this point.  I quickly refilled my handheld.  I wanted 15 miles, but I knew I'd be happy with 12 miles.  Still, I wanted to have less to do tomorrow, so I soldiered on.  The pace seemed slow, but it wasn't.  I flirted with a 9:30 overall pace for a lot of this run.

I went across the road from the main lot.  I figured that I'd try to go out 2 miles there.  I made it less than a mile and felt like heading back.  I decided to go back on a little longer way.  That didn't add all that much.  I finished this short loop at a little over 13 miles.  A dog that I saw earlier jumped at me this time.

I wasn't feeling all that great, but I was so close to 15 miles.  I decided to take the short route back out to the road.  That wouldn't be too hilly.  I did that and then went back on the trail.  I hit mile 14 at the bridge and turned around.  I was close to running under 2:20, but it didn't look like I would make it. 

The sky was starting to get dark in the final 1.5 miles.  In the last half mile, I felt a few drops.  I had to briefly run on the main path.  There I saw two other trail runners.  The guy had a big beard and really looked like a trail runner.  I finished up exhausted with 15 miles.

This was a good run and a nice battle with the heat and humidity.  I've run farther at Jacobsburg, but typically I stop more.  This time, I stopped only very briefly and I didn't walk all of that much.  In the final few miles, I kept going.  I made it out just in time as it was pouring 10 minutes later when I was on the road.

That run was timed perfectly.  The heavy rain and lightning didn't last long.  They were coming in waves.  Since I saw another one was coming later at night, I decided to try another run in the evening.

I went to some neighborhoods not too far from me.  I actually plotted out a 6 mile route on the computer, earlier in the evening.  That seemed like it would be perfect.

I parked at a small park.  I began by running over to an industrial park on the other side of Route 512.  Crossing that road was kind of tricky.  I made it though.  Even though that was busy, I knew the industrial park route would be perfect.

I ran the loop and stayed to the outside, so I was actually running with traffic.  Luckily, there wasn't much traffic and the road is pretty wide.  I wore my new shoes.  I felt awesomely fast in them.  The problem is that they irritate the top of my foot for some reason.  I kept stopping to adjust them.  Finally, it went away.

The first mile was solid and I was surprised at how much faster I began running.  I guess the trail running didn't take too much out of me and I still felt fresh.  There were some slight uphills in the industrial park that were surprising.

Crossing Route 512 took some time again.  I managed to get across it though.  I ran back past my car.  That put me at over 3 miles.  I was happy to have less than 3 miles remaining.

I was feeling good and moving quickly up the hill.  It was definitely still a bit humid, but after the rain, things were much better.  Running shirtless on this evening definitely did help too.

After climbing the hill, I crossed a road and was into a neighborhood loop.  I've ridden here and run here from time to time, but it has been awhile.  A few people were out and some kids watched me run by.

I couldn't believe how good I felt and how quick the pace was.  I hit mile 5 of this run and was still going strong.  I was running close to goal marathon pace, without too much effort.  I'd be thrilled if I could do that next month.

I got back to my car and was disappointed that I wasn't at mile 6 yet.  I was just short.  By now, I knew that I'd be running to mile 7.  I had to go out and back in another neighborhood.  I was moving pretty well.  I got to 6.5 miles and turned around and headed back.  A dog barked at me, but didn't leave the yard.

All of the final 3 miles were 7:06 or faster.  That was not bad on such a big mileage day.  I finished the day with 22 total miles and I'm now 8 miles short of 80 for the week.  I'm hoping to get all of that in in the morning with the BCR.  They are running at Plainfield.  I don't like it there, but I do like where they go for breakfast, so I'll probably join.  I have to mix in some weight training before bed too!

Afternoon Run 15 miles - 2:19:55 (9:20 pace)
Evening Run 7 miles - 52:29 (7:30 pace)

Thursday, June 12, 2014

A Slow 7

Today was a tough day to run.  Tomorrow, looks to be even worse.  It didn't rain all day today, but it was off and on.  I had to pick my spots.  I waited and eventually ran late in the afternoon.

So I didn't waste time, I ran around my neighborhoods.  I was hoping for 5 miles at least, but really wanted 7 miles.  Running 10 to 12 miles would've been outstanding.

I am tired of the same routes, so I decided to head to the neighborhood next to the school, rather than the one across from it.  This has a gradual hill pretty early on.  I began the run very slow.

I wasn't sure if I was even going to run today, because I've had some chafing problems.  I've tried to put on some creams, but that only helped a little.  I'm still sore.  I am also stubborn, so I had to run.

The chafing definitely slowed me down, not that that is a bad thing.  The first mile was over 9 minutes.  I almost never run that slow.  In that mile, I encountered two older guys running together.  I usually don't see anyone in that neighborhood, other than walkers. 

I cruised down the hill and into the industrial park.  I was hoping that I could get over 5 miles on this part of the run.  Then, maybe I wouldn't have to run across the street.  I had on my new shoes and they worked fairly well.

I got to the industrial park and turned around.  I headed to the end of the road and went back.  I was well over 2 miles at this point.  I then added a short loop through some new houses.  I was back up climbing another long, gradual hill.

The pace had picked up slightly by mile 3, but it still wasn't fast.  When I was back into the neighborhood, I decided to run the two dead end streets there.  Those out and backs would give me more mileage and add a couple decent hills.  I was surprised that the first one added about 3/4 of a mile.

I made it through both of the hills and headed back.  When I arrived back at the school, I was just at mile 6.  I had another mile to go.  I actually wanted to add .13 miles to even up my mileage for the week.

I didn't want to go into my neighborhood initially, so I did two loops around the school parking lot.  I still had about half a mile to go and was getting bored.  I did a partial loop of my neighborhood to finish up.

Overall, this run wasn't bad, other than the dampness of the air.  Summertime is so terrible.  I was sweating quite a bit throughout this easy run.  It was cloudy, rainy and the temperature wasn't that high either.  At one point, it rained quite a bit.  That was refreshing, but it didn't last.  I'm still having the chafing issue, but it doesn't seem as bad.

I really wanted to get out for a 2nd run.  I was going to run at night, but it is raining now.  I thought the rain would come sooner.  I could've actually snuck in a run just before dark.  I'm now mad that I didn't.

I still have 30 miles that I would like to run over the next two days, to finish out the week.  That will be a lot of running.  I'm hoping to get to the trail tomorrow.  That would make running 15 miles much easier.  It would be nice to get to Jacobsburg.  The problem is that it is supposed to rain all day.  I may have to find a window.  I might need to run twice.  I may even need to give up my quest for an 80 miles week.

7.13 miles - 58:49 (8:15 pace)