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Scott last won the day on February 14 2021

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  1. Scott

    Keeping my hand in

    Not a running post, but running adjacent. I should be at the Millrose Games today, but I'm not, and I'm thinking about last year's Millrose, which was probably our last big day out before everything shut down. Allyson Felix was there. Donavan Brazier set an 800m men's US indoor record. Ajee Wilson set an 800m women's US indoor record. Elle Purrier set a women's USA indoor mile record. People were getting excited about Tokyo. After the meet ended, we hightailed it over to Coogan's to get a table before the runners started to trickle in. My brother-in-law, Jim, who has followed track and field since he was a kid in the 1960s, was excited to see one of his running heroes, Eamonn Coghlan, walk in. Later, when Elle Purrier entered, the entire place broke into cheers. Then Peter Walsh, the co-owner, stopped by the table, as he did with all the tables, and talked to us as though he had known us for years. Soon after that, Jim excused himself to go the bathroom, which is best described as intimate, and we at the table watched with a mixture of humor/fascination, as Eamonn Coghlan headed in right behind him. Jim walked out of the bathroom, and immediately made eye contact with us across the room with a look on his face that showed that he had just met one of his heroes in the can, and that he knew that we knew he had just met one of his heroes in the can. Jim said Coghlan walked in, looked at him, and said, "Hi! How are ya?" And this year, no Millrose, and Coogan's has closed for good. After it closed, Peter Walsh made a video about the bar's influence on its neighborhood, Washington Heights. About a minute and half in, there's a segment where the camera sweeps to Elle Purrier reacting to the cheers that greeted her when she walked in. Freeze that sweep at the right moment, and you catch a blurred image of me (part of me, anyway), my wife, my brother-in-law, and my nephew. It was a big day out. On a different note, I was reading a description of one of the first distance races in the US, a 25-mile race in September 1896. About 30 runners started enthusiastically enough, but about 5 miles in, some of them realized what they were up against. A reporter for the New York Herald described these runners as beginning to think that "their early hopes were not warranted by the facts.” That's how I'm going to describe every bad run I have from now on.
  2. Scott

    not running & being

    "I hate it when they say I'm aging gracefully. I fight it every day. I guess they never see." --the prophet Berg
  3. Scott

    Birthday Silliness

    Fantastic. Happy birthday!
  4. Year of the Monkey and Mere Christianity on the same list is making my head spin (in a good way). I had checked out a 1000-page, stream-of-consciousness book called Ducks, Newburyport before COVID, thinking that I would have to renew it a few times before I could finish. And then our local PL shut down. I finished it today. Best wishes to you and Nugget for a good recovery.
  5. Scott

    Fauxnwood 5k

    Thanks! I haven't considered it, but if it were a Tim Horton's, I would do it every week.
  6. Scott

    Fauxnwood 5k

    Thanks! We appear to be healthy going into week 4 of staying at home., so I'm optimistic. I hope all's well down there with you.
  7. Scott

    Fauxnwood 5k

    Who would have guessed that a simple 2020 goal of running a race a month could be so easily disrupted by anything other than injury or lack of interest? I'm not on Loopville, anymore (nothing personal, Loopville), but I had been thinking about running my own races, and with March coming to a close, I had to decide. Saturday was rainy, so no go. Sunday I had a 7 mile progression run that I wanted to do just to get out the house for awhile. Monday's are usually 3 miles and hill sprints, so I planned, weather permitting, to substitute a timed 5k for that. There's a local October race, the Fanwood 5k, where the finish line is about a quarter-mile from my house. I decided to use that route, and move the start forward to the other side of the busiest intersection I would encounter. This had the added bonus of putting the finish closer to home. So at 5:40 a.m. yesterday morning, with a headlamp on, I did an easy 0.6 warm-up run down empty streets and past the eerily quiet train station. At the driveway into a Dunkin Donuts, I stopped, set my watch to 5k, and hit the button. I was running in the dark, made darker by the low clouds that hid any approaching daylight, on roads and sidewalks slick with condensation. It was a Monday morning, the beginning of week 3 of isolation. In the October race, this course is a combination of roads open and closed to traffic, but now, oddly, in what would normally be the start of the morning rush, I might as well have been running on a closed course. So while my initial concern had been about traffic, I found that the hardest thing was ignoring that voice in my head telling me I could bail on this at any time and no one would ever know. I didn't feel like I was going particularly fast, and when the first mile buzzed at 8:22, I really thought about calling it off, because I was hoping to be closer to 8 m/m. But as I reached the portion of the course that is in my neighborhood, I relaxed, and mile 2 felt better, confirmed by the 8:11 at the mark. Knowing exactly what I faced for the rest of the run, and being 2/3 of the way through, I started to look forward to finishing, walking into the house, and having some coffee. Mile 3 clocked in at 7:59, with the last 0.1 (or 0.13 on my watch) at 1:01. Full time 25:33 (AG 55-59, if you're counting). Comparing this to my January and February race times, it's in the middle. Slower than January; faster than February. But it was a good exercise in self-discipline, and as I settled in at the kitchen table for another day of emails, zoom meetings, and homework monitoring that would burn roughly 7 calories in total, I could at least remind myself that I had run a race. On a Monday morning. Before the sun came up.
  8. Scott

    Here's an Idea.

    I was thinking along the same lines, except I would run a 5k, and not a half. My 2020 goal to run a race every month has been shut down unless I somehow make myself run a 5k for time in March. This would help motivate me. I'm in.
  9. Scott

    Graceful....As Ever...

    Ouch! Your fall looks like it was way worse than mine. But if I had to choose between that and 21 miles on a treadmill, I might choose the fall.
  10. Scott

    Decision Made, Plans Laid

    My family spends time in Rangeley, ME, just south of Eustis, every summer. Lots of memories have been made in that part of the state, so I'm envious of you. Good places to eat in Rangeley and Oquossoc, if you have time to sightsee. Good luck with the training.
  11. Scott

    Going backwards or upside down

    We could have used you for a group photo on the beach! It's not easy fitting 7 people into a selfie when the person with the longest arms is blind as a bat, and the best selfie taker is the shortest person. And did you hear that Gov. Murphy ran the race? Not definite on my next race, but it will probably be a St. Patty's run of some type. I'm also eyeing the Cherry Blossom 10K in Newark on April 5, but it's Palm Sunday, so I'll have to see.
  12. Since the 2018 NYC marathon, besides enjoying not having to train for a marathon, I've been evaluating what I want to get from running as I head for the back half of my 50s. I came to running late, but I've been at it now for 12 years or so, and I would like to keep at it for as long as possible, even as PRs feel more distant and I can practically sense my speed slipping away with every run. These thoughts, as well as worries about aging parents and my oldest child's college preparations, made 2019 an off-and-on year for running. I ran one race, and other than that, the highlight of the running year was a post-race meal in Asbury Park with some loopsters after they ran the NJ half marathon/marathon in April. In November, after a year of JFR, I decided that in 2020, I was going to run a race every month. Here's how it's gone so far. January 1 The Central Jersey Road Runners' Hangover 5K in Westfield, NJ. 25:27 (gun-time only). I've run this race a few times, with temperatures at noon ranging from 17 degrees to near 60 degrees. This year, it was high 40s and windy. My 5k PR was set in this race in 2012 (22:40-ish). I was hoping to go sub-25, as a way to start the year strong, and I had about 6 weeks of uninterrupted training coming in, but like a fool, I lined up where the directors wanted the 8 minute milers to line up, which meant I was behind a lot of 10-12 m/m resolution runners that I had to get around at the start. My Garmin showed my time as 25:02, with the first mile split 8:20, followed by 8:08 and 7:44. I crossed the finish line and just kept going to my car. As I drove away down the street which shared part of the route, I passed a number of people who were still running. I got home, cleaned up, and promptly came down with a cough and a fever. February 16 Mike's Seafood Polar Bear Run/Walk for Autism in Sea Isle City, NJ. 25:47. It's hard to find races in NJ in February. Other than a weekly timed 5k in a park about 30 minutes from my home, the only race near me was a Valentine's themed race that requires runners to ask for sponsors. On Super Bowl Sunday, my sister-in-law, who is also a runner, told me about a 5K race on the Sea Isle promenade that she and my nephew have run. Her husband's family have a shore house that's a 10-minute walk from the starting line, and there was a room available for us, so down the shore we headed for President's Day weekend. That January illness and some iffy weather had made a mess of my running schedule, and 10 days had passed since I had last been able to get out the door, so I had no idea what to expect from this race. My honest guess was I would be lucky to run at 8:30 pace. But for a race in the middle of February, the weather was kind. Temps were pushing into the 50s, with some high cloud cover, when the day before, at the annual Sea Isle polar bear plunge into the Atlantic, the temperature had been below freezing. I ran 8:19 pace, which I'll take, but I hope this isn't a trend for the rest of the year. I would like to improve my times, and not get slower with each month. Maybe get to sub-24 before the year ends. My brother-in-law joked that I was running on a strange course. No home field advantage. But races by the ocean, even in February, are hard to beat. Plus, after the race, when I was walking to meet my family, I unexpectedly crossed paths with ocrunnergirl. As with the Hangover Run, I negative split like crazy (8:38, 8:20, 8:06). I'm not happy with these 40-second swings between my first and last miles. My first miles need to be faster, and the following miles need to be more consistent. My nephew finished the race 3rd overall in 17:44, and he didn't run negative splits, but his splits fell within a 5-second range of one another. Tales too short for bloops In the winter, I run in the dark, and one of my regular routes passes a house where a resident has set up a stationary bike in a 2nd-floor room between a lamp and a window shade. This person is often on the bike when I run past the house, and it creates a silhouette that, when I first saw it and didn't know what it was, made me feel a little dirty. I provided some pre-dawn slapstick entertainment for a driver at a traffic light a few weeks ago, when I was crossing the street and was so busy looking around for cars that I didn't see an orange mesh barrier stretched across the sidewalk in front of me. It caught me waist-high and I went ass-over-tea kettle, head down, feet up, over the barrier, and knocked the whole thing down. Only my pride was hurt. And honestly, if I were that driver, I would have laughed at me. Loud. I went to the Millrose Games a few Saturdays ago. I started going to this meet in 2018 with my brother-in-law and fast nephew, and it's a great event for watching world-class runners up close, as well as some up-and-coming high school and college runners. We weren't sure what this year would be like with athletes gearing up for Tokyo, but we saw Ajee Wilson and Donovan Brazier set indoor 800m American records, and if you haven't seen Elle Purrier's record-setting Women's Wanamaker Mile, I can recommend it. If you watch the video and know where to pause it, you can see me. I'm the blurry looking thing with gray hair. Be healthy. Be safe.
  13. Scott

    Working hard

    I'm impressed that you can train, work and go to school. No wonder you're tired. I hope it all goes well.
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