Who knew that they held ultra marathons in Millburn, NJ? As I wrapped up week six of my training plan, I happened to stumble across a couple hundred runners competing in races essentially in my parent’s backyard! It was great to see such a strong, local group of athletes out there and definitely made Saturday’s long run a bit easier. While my sights have been set on some big-name races this year, I never want to lose touch with the local trail running scene. In Boston, we are lucky enough have the amazing Trail Animals Running Club (TARC) putting on cheap races and social runs. But if I happen to leave the city, I always want to be connected to the local crowds that make the sport so great.
In terms of training, week 6 was a bit lighter, which was much needed after week 5. I logged just over 60 miles, with my first trail miles in a couple of months (hence seeing the local ultra). Aside from the long run, everything just kind of flew by this week. Training is becoming a routine, so it never really feels like I am running six days in a row.
I started the week off running some miles along the river. Nothing too special, just a night run alone. I did happen to remember that I needed to get a new pair of shoes. Every step I took, they felt dead, so the 10 miles felt a bit more tiresome than expected.
Since I had a work event in the evening, I woke early on Wednesday to get my run in. The run called for 6 miles at marathon pace plus some extra more casual miles. Normally, runs like this are easy, but having only run 9 or so hours beforehand, I felt wiped!
Thursday I did 7 easy miles on my own. Really nothing special to write home about here, just a normal easy run!
Friday I squeezed in a quick 10K between work and heading back to NJ for the weekend for some family time. It was kind of fun to be under a time constraint because it meant I had to run a certain pace. This was my first run on my replacement sneakers after Tuesday’s discovery, and what a difference new shoes can make! I didn’t feel nearly as achy or worn as I had on runs from earlier in the week.
Saturday I got to hit the trails! My parents live close to a park in NJ with a couple dozen miles of trails. After the long drive home, I decided to sleep in a bit. When I finally hit the trails, I was shocked to see a group of 15+ people running together. A little later, another group passed. I shouted “Is there a race going on?” to which someone responded “Yeah, a 50K”. As it turns out the “Febapple Frozen Fifty” was going on, so some people were running much more than 50K! While I didn’t hop in, there was some great company on a run I thought I would be completely alone during. Maybe next year I’ll add it to the race calendar.
On Sunday, I woke up completely demolished from running 17 miles on trail. While I originally intended to run trails both days, I decided to play it safe and stick to the road. I logged 8 easy miles before heading back up to Boston.