Trail Monster Running

Visit the official TRAIL MONSTER RUNNING website for information on upcoming group runs, local trails, trail races and more, including the Pineland Farms Trail Running Festival and the Bradbury Mountain trail Running Series.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Saturday Routine

After last week's run on the Beautiful Loop I decided I wanted to try to run it every week until the rivers thaw and I can't get across. This was week 2 and I hoped to complete the loop a little faster than last week, but of course that would largely be dependent on the trail conditions and weather. When we arrived at Bradbury the temperature was about -10, but luckily there wasn't any wind. 

This weeks group was a little bigger than last week, Jim, Jamie, Valerie, Rick, Alan and Andy joined Emma and me. I set off in the lead and was moving at a pretty quick pace, partly because I knew I wanted to run the loop faster this week, but also because I figured that moving more quickly would help me keep warm, which it did. The Link Trail was pretty soft but as soon as we hit the Snowmobile Trail conditions improved dramatically and running was pretty easy.

Jamie and Andy kept me company for the first 4 miles when I realized that we'd gotten pretty far ahead of the rest of the group so I took us on a little out and back detour which left us at the back of the pack. At this point Emma was leading the chase group of Jim and Alan who hadn't realized that we cut off from the regular route and were moving pretty quickly themselves to try and catch us. After about a mile of chasing them down we finally caught up and ran together (somewhat) as one group.

Our group paused briefly on Chandler Brook, the only good thing about sub-zero temperatures is that it helps make the ice on rivers a little thicker. It seemed a bit funny for the six of us to be standing on the ice in the middle of a river, until we heard a few cracks and quickly made it to the other side. I guess 900+ pounds was a bit much for that ice. Shortly after the river crossing Emma, Jim, Andy and Alan turned off onto Pownal Range Road to take the quicker way back to the park (10+ miles total), while Jamie and I continued on the snowmobile trails under the powerlines.

By now it had warmed up into positive numbers but was still pretty cold. Last night I went to Cabela's and bought a pair of battery heated socks, stripped the wiring out of the sock along with one of the two battery connections and attempted to make a heated sleeve for my hydration pack hose. It all worked pretty well at home but didn't last long on the run, I'm not sure if the battery connection was bad or what, but it didn't keep my hose from freezing. I'll continue to tinker with this and see if I can get it to work...

The last few miles of this run have the worst (or best?) hills. Nothing terribly long, but enough steep ups that really slow you down and drain your energy. Last week we skipped out on one of the bigger hills on the west side of Bradbury Mountain, but this week there were good tracks going up so we had to do it (it's the sharp spike between 13 and 14 miles on the elevation profile above). 250 feet of vertical in 1/2 mile, then back down again, then climbing another 250 feet over the course of the next mile.

We reached Rt 9 about 1/4 mile from the park and had about 14.25 miles done at that point, I told Jamie I was OK running back on the road and getting in a little less than 15, but he insisted on continuing on the trails so we could reach at least 15 miles. So we crossed Rt 9, ran Knight Woods to the Snomobile Trail and back along the Link Trail and finished with 15.4 miles. Slower than last week but that has something to do with being more than a mile longer and throwing in a few extra hills. Great run.

Following the run we headed to Edna & Lucy's, Trail Monster's new favorite place for post run refueling.

time: 2:33:41
distance: 15.4 miles
pace: 9:57

weather: -10 to +15, sunny and calm

conditions: well packed snowmobile trails, a little soft in some places

gear: Inov-8 Oroc 280, wool socks, sock lines, tights, 2x long sleeve shirts, t-shirt, 2x gloves, 2x buffs, Nathan HPL #020

Post run note: Although I wasn't aware of having particularly cold feet during the run I discovered after the fact that I got frostbite on a few my toes. Ouch.


Jamie said...

Good running with you. I like the idea of doing that loop each week. It's a really great route with a bit of everything.

middle.professor said...

Good run, especially followed by the snowshoe run the next day.

Kevin said...

Battery heated socks? You learn something new every day.