February 2019 Newsletter

Welcome to the February 2019 edition of the Upper Valley Running Club newsletter! Whew, January brought some chilly runs! But that didn’t seem to stop UVRC. Keep your submissions coming — email newsletter@uppervalleyrunningclub.org.

Happy running!

Table of Contents

    1. Letter from a Board Member by Paul Coats
    2. Here to Help by Leah Todd
    3. Upper Valley Running Series 2019 by Geoff Dunbar
    4. Dartmouth Relays by Keriann Ketcham
    5. Annals of Winter Wild by Ellie Ferguson
    6. Skip’s Run by Denis Ibey
    7. World Down Syndrome Day Fun Run by Judy Phillips
    8. Renewing UVRC – Signup, Get Out and Make Tracks… by Jim Burnett
    9. Runner Profile: Joffrey Peters
    10. Ask the Coaches
    11. Injury Prevention 101: Strengthen your butt! by Kevin Stanton
    12. Finding Serenity at Occom by Laura Petto
    13. The Survey Says…

Letter from a Board Member

by Paul Coats

My running club in Atlanta had coaching, group runs, social events, Habitat for Humanity volunteer days, fantastically fun people, and it filled a big social void that I felt even in the midst of a city of 4 million people. I would drive 45 minutes each way to meet my running club friends, and even though I lived around the poverty level, I’d pay the $150 annual club dues. That was a hard check to write but I knew it was worth it. Today, I don’t miss the money, but I do cherish the memories of my time in that running club.

Moving to the Upper Valley from Atlanta included a short list of disappointments. It wasn’t the sparse nightlife or abbreviated top off the Jeep season that topped that list, but no running club! Lucky for me, I work for a rec department, so I figured I’d just create a club. In fact, the 1st annual Shamrock Shuffle included a sign-up sheet for people interested in joining a new club. I think 30+ runners of the 120 or so inaugural Shamrock Shufflers signed that list. For a variety of reasons I never actually created that running club, mostly because I only thought of doing all the work of creating it myself. There was simply too much for one person to accomplish.

How sweet was the day, years later, when Geoff, Nancy, Kim, Dave and others came to Leb Rec to talk about a *team* of people coming together to start a running club. Imagine that, recognizing that we can be successful in creating a running club as a team rather than as an individual. Come together as a team we did, and way more people have contributed to this team than just the original dreamers. UVRC leaders are constantly stepping forward, and step forward we must, because here we are taking on just as much as that huge Atlanta club did (for an eighth of the price).

Come to think of it, we do most things better as a well-functioning community compared to as individuals. This is true for the UVRC, Lebanon Recreation, homelife, my spiritual journey, and even in my running. Just ask any regular club member or UVRC Couch to 5k runner, we do this better in community.

See you at the Shamrock Shuffle, March 16. Now there’s a big community of runners in one place!

Here to Help

by Leah Todd

Leah Todd running the Jemez Mountain Trail Run 50k in Los Alamos, New Mexico in 2017. Photo by Andy Thien.

Hi fellow runners, my name is Leah Todd, and I’m a freelance journalist and runner living in Lebanon. I’ve been chatting with the UVRC’s newsletter folks, who asked about bringing some brainstorming power to local runners who want to do more writing about their running in the coming year. Have a story you’ve always wanted to tell about your experience running, whether two miles or 20? Did you see or hear or feel something powerful on a recent run that you’re inspired to share with others, but don’t know where to start? I love running, I love writing, and I love working with other people do both. So if you have ideas for a future narrative to share in the newsletter, overhear someone whose running story is compelling, or just want to say hi, please reach out: leahktodd@gmail.com. And meantime, happy trails. I’ll see you around.

Upper Valley Running Series 2019

by Geoff Dunbar

Announcing… the 2019 Upper Valley Running Series! For those who don’t know:

The UVRS is a series of existing road races in the Upper Valley. The goal is to encourage participation and competition in Upper Valley road races, with recognition for performance and participation for runners. Runners who are members of the club at the time of the race do not need to register separately for the UVRS series; simply participating in the road races through their registration procedure qualifies a runner in the series. However, to score, you must be a member of the Upper Valley Running Club!

Full information can be found here.

Without further ado, the 2019 lineup for the series is:

  • Ledyard RedZone 5K, February 3, Wilder VT (non-scoring preview event)
  • Shamrock Shuffle 5K, March 16, Lebanon NH
  • Skip’s Run 4M, June 16, Lebanon NH
  • Shaker Seven 7M, June 23, Enfield NH
  • Red, White, and Blue 6.2 10K, July 4, Lebanon NH
  • Under the Tree 5K, August 17, Hartland VT *
  • Sprouty 10K, September 21, Sharon VT
  • Tiger Run 12K, October 27, Enfield NH
  • Turkey Trot 10K, November 24, Hanover NH

* The Under the Tree UVRS race is the 5K distance.

Run 6 of the 8 races and receive the coveted UVRS series finisher prize! Prize to be determined, but last year it was a pretty nice jacket, and our budget has increased this year, and also a guaranteed (but not free) entry to the 2020 Covered Bridges Half Marathon.

This is an exciting line-up of local races, and I look forward to running them with many of you!

Dartmouth Relays

by Keriann Ketcham

Your fearless newsletter editor after the Dartmouth Relays masters mile

Last weekend was the 50th Annual Dartmouth Relays indoor track meet. On behalf of UVRC, I volunteered as a track marshal on Saturday for the high school races, and on Sunday for the Master’s and college races. My job is usually setting up lane cones for the runners, making sure spectators don’t walk across the finish line, and keeping the finish area clear for the sprinters long past the finish line, as they tend to “run it out” pretty far. As a bonus, I get to see some incredible local and regional talent! My favorite events to watch are the hurdles (my old event) and the mile.

In addition to the free food they give us, this year, I even got a great Nike running hat! Only 2 more years until I’m 30 years old, and can sign myself up for some Master’s events!

Annals of Winter Wild

by Ellie Ferguson

Winter Wild has already begun. The first installment at Magic Mountain included groomed snow (oh my)… a change from last year’s ungroomed snow. And, it was some 50 degrees warmer with an ambient temp of 43 degrees and rain 5 minutes prior to race time. The rain DID stop and off we went.. Fast forward a month and a double weekend on tap. Saturday at Cranmore and Sunday at Black Mountain, and around 5-8 degrees and sunny. Nothing like stomping around in the snow at 7am up and down a mountain. While the crowds seem a bit smaller this year (70-85 per event), they remain some of my favorite events.

Skip’s Run

by Denis Ibey

UVRC Runners,

Many of you are familiar with the annual Skip Matthews Memorial Run that takes place each Father’s Day. This will be our 16th year for the event and we’re reaching out to the local running community to recruit additional Board members.

There has been great continuity on the board since the inception of Skip’s Run and that continues. However, we want to be proactive in planning for the future and in tapping the fresh perspectives and ideas that new members can bring to the group.

The Board meets most months, once a month, from January through May to plan and organize the 4 mile and 1 mile events in June. On the day of the race we coordinate various aspects of the event. We also have a wrap up meeting that usually occurs in September. We’re seeking new members who are interested in being involved in any of several areas such as the Start/Finish line, Traffic and Safety, Fundraising, Registration, Refreshments, T-shirts and Awards.

If you’re interested please send us an email at skipsrun@gmail.com There you can contact us with questions; please also describe your area(s) of interest and any experience you have pertaining to road races.

Denis Ibey, Race Director

World Down Syndrome Day Fun Run

by Judy Phillips

Date: Thursday, March 21, 2019
Time: 5:30 PM
Where: The Green, Colburn Park, Lebanon, NH

Fun run or walk through the neighborhoods of Lebanon, approximately 5k distance. Informal registration, by donation. All proceeds support Ruby’s Rainbow.
Celebration at Salt Hill Pub after the run!

Join the fun and help raise awareness – support the dreams and encourage the potential of young folks with Down Syndrome. Let’s have a record turnout this year! This is such a lovely event. It’s the most fun you’ll have midweek in chilly March!

Renewing UVRC – Signup, Get Out and Make Tracks…

by Jim Burnett

As the Upper Valley Running Club begins its ninth year, we have a lot to be grateful for and some key people to thank. After four years of well attended weekly track workouts, starting in 2006, at the Dartmouth outdoor track lead by Kim Sheffield and Hank Glass, our “founders” decided it was time to establish a running club in the Upper Valley. So, on October 13th, 2010, Dave Aman, Steven Andrews, Geoff Dunbar and Kim sat down at a table in Lou’s Restaurant in Hanover and hashed it out. As a result, Tuesday Night Track (TNT) became an established weekly feature, a monthly newsletter began publication and a racing team was established to compete in state (NH Grand Prix) and regional (USATF New England Grand Prix) running series. Dave served as the first UVRC president (2011, 2012), followed by Geoff (2013, 2014), then Tim Smith (2015-2018). UVRC partnered with the Lebanon Recreation Department, directed by Paul Coats, and picked up a sponsorship from Richard Wallace, owner of Omer & Bob’s sports shop in downtown Lebanon and so it all began. The Bylaws of UVRC were penned in 2014 and updated in 2015, The club’s stated “Purposes” were expressed as follows.

“The UVRC promotes and encourages distance running as a participatory activity and as a competitive sport. Toward those goals, the UVRC promotes and conducts races or other running activities; disseminates information on running via presentations and educational programs; conducts training runs and social gatherings; and does related activities.”

In the last nine years our membership has grown by leaps and bounds, new programs have been added and old ones have evolved and expanded. We have established a strong presence in the Upper Valley and provide volunteer services for races and other community events. The UVRC Board of Directors is in the process of revisiting our “Purposes” in order to bring our Mission Statement up to date.

UVRC programs now include, in no particular order…

  • Summer and Winter TNT
  • Monthly Newsletter
  • NH Grand Prix Club Racing Team
  • Social Events – Annual Banquet, Annual Picnic, Jingle Bell Run, monthly Pub Night
  • Weekly Group Runs on Saturdays starting at Omer & Bob’s
  • The Upper Valley Race Series – a schedule of 8 local races each year
  • Couch to 5K Program and Alumni Group
  • USATF Mt. Running Series individual and club participation, including the Mt Washington Road Race
  • Group trail runs with the Upper Valley Trail Running Club
  • Volunteer Program providing help to VT50 and Covered Bridges Half Marathon (CBHM) and Dartmouth College track events
  • Pacer Program providing pacers for CBHM and CHaD Hero Half Marathon
  • Vanpool services to NHGP races, using the Leb. Rec. Dept van
  • Post-race breakfasts after NHGP away races
  • Scholarship Program for local high school runners
  • Running Shoe Recycling through Omer & Bob’s and selected local races
  • UVRC Website, UVRC MeetUp Group, UVRC Club on Strava
  • Partnering with Hanover Recreation Dept for Hanover Turkey Trot and Main Street Mile

So, I challenge all you Wooly Syrup Chuggers new and old and young and “seasoned” to
“RENEW” UVRC

  • Join the club for the first time or renew your membership NOW…
  • Signup, Get Out and Run…
  • Come Join in the Fun…
  • And give back by Volunteering at club events too…

Our membership topped 400 WOOLY WARRIORS strong in 2016. I believe we can surpass the 500 mark this year if you signup or renew your membership now. If you like UVRC, recruit friends to join too. I can think of no better way to meet kindred spirits and make new friends than by joining UVRC.

By my calculation, if we grow to 500 members averaging 5K of running, walking, hiking, riding (3:1 ride miles to run miles) per day, in one year (taking approximately 2,000 steps per mile) UVRC members could create over ONE BILLION FOOTPRINTS throughout the Upper Valley and around the world.

SO, SIGNUP, STAND UP & GET OUT THERE AND MAKE TRACKS…
LET’S RENEW UVRC!!!

The fun has already started, join us…
Zooooooooooooom…

O&B’s SATURDAY MORNING RUN, January 26th, 2019

Runner Profile

By Mary Peters

Name: Joffrey Peters

Town: Lebanon

What do you do professionally? I am a software engineer at Creare in Hanover.

How long have you been running? 2 years consistently.

How long have you been running competitively? 1.5 years.

Why do you run? Mostly to move fast in the mountains, but also so I can eat delicious foods, drink beer, and for the sheer joy of moving sometimes.

Recent memorable moment while running? I have had a few delightful moments running in the snow in the woods where I see no one, there are few tracks, and it’s just me and my breath and my footsteps and the snow on the trees.

Best athletic accomplishment and why? I ran solo, and unsupported from Hanover to Moosilauke Ravine Lodge on the AT.

If you like to race, favorite race distance? Why? I like the half-marathon distance. It’s short enough that serious glycogen depletion issues don’t crop up, but long enough that it’s not a sprint.

Training partners? I have found a great group of trail, and ultrarunners who encourage and push me, and get me out for long runs when I might otherwise sit at home. Shout out to Brandon Baker and his Team AMP crew.

Cross training activities? Rock and ice climbing, skiing, hiking, occasional cycling.

Favorite local running route? I like running from my work on Great Hollow Road, up the Old Hwy 38 trail to Trescott Trail, turning SoBo on the AT into the Hanover, then running back via Greensboro Rd.

Favorite post run treat? Beer.

Strangest place ever run? Florida. What an odd place.

What made you start running? I did quite a bit of fast, long-distance backpacking with an Ultralight Backpacking group out of Washington D.C., and eventually realized that my hiking pace wasn’t much slower than cutoff time for many ultramarathons. Since I was already backpacking 30 miles in a day, why not try to go a little faster and “run” it?

Who is your running “idol”? Kilian Jornet (and Courtney Dauwalter – “You’re fine. This is fine. Keep going.”)

Why did you join UVRC? Based solely on the Holiday Party raffle prizes, it’s a stellar deal, and I was going to the Tuesday Night Tracks fairly regularly anyway.

Hot or cold weather runner? Cold!

How about favorite work out? Hills! Sage Canaday calls hill workouts “speed work in disguise”.

What is your diet like? Vegetarian, but probably not as healthy as you might imagine. Lots of cookies, peanut butter, and beer.

If you could run with anyone, who would be the person? Kilian Jornet – what a constant source of enthusiasm. And if I could keep up, it would mean I was a spectacular runner.

What else should the club know about you? I speak Norwegian fluently.

Ask the Coaches

Got a question for the coaches? Send it to newsletter@uppervalleyrunningclub.org and I’ll send it on!

Julia Neily asks:
What is the best way to run faster? Or: is there a plateau for how fast someone can run?

Carly Wynn says:

Hahaha well, this one really gets at the heart of what it means to be an athlete and a coach, doesn’t it? I’m going to go off on a long explanation here, but if you want one simple thing to do that will give you the biggest bang for your buck, jump to the bottom of my answer.

There are so many ways one could go about answering this question. One short answer right off the bat is that yes, there is going to be a maximum speed one can run. It will be determined by factors like VO2 max, age, and proportion of fast-twitch, slow-twitch, and intermediate twitch muscle fibers. You can train so that you hit your upper limit of VO2 max and you can train which muscle fibers you recruit, but you can’t change your VO2 max or the type of muscle fibers you have, and you can’t change the fact that adaptations will be slower and less effective as you age. Factors like blood volume and hemoglobin, stroke volume (how much blood the heart can pump in a stroke), oxygen utilization and capillary density, lactate production and clearing capabilities, neural response, and mental components can all be trained extensively. I feel confident saying most athletes will not reach the maximal performance they could be capable of.

With that relatively simple answer given, the question of what is the best way to run fast absolutely cannot be answered in a blanket statement. Every athlete is going to be different. It’s going to depend a lot on the athlete’s age and athletic history. It will depend on whether the athlete wants to run fast for 100m or 50 miles. You get the idea.

That said, here are a few extremely generalized training tips that would certainly be a part of any plan to make you the fastest runner you can be:

1) Lots of distance at conversational pace. These kind of comfortable training runs are absolutely essential. Training is like baking a cake. These distance runs are your cake. Intensity and speed work are the icing and sprinkles. Did I say conversational pace? You want these runs to be comfortable. So many athletes train too hard.

2) Specialized intensity. Interval workouts need to be tailored to your specific running goals and capabilities. Different types of workouts force your body to adapt in different ways. Some will be aimed at raising your lactate threshold, some will be aimed at specific capillary adaptation, some will be aimed at maximum speed, etc. To do a highly effective intensity workout, you need to have specific goals, specific pace ranges, and preferably heart rate and / or lactate data (and someone who knows how to analyze it).

3) Recovery. Really, this point should be number one. It’s not during the breakdown that you get stronger, it’s during the rest. You have to, have to rest. When in doubt, you are not resting enough. This means small-scale and large-scale. Give yourself a few minutes after every workout to get off your feet, stretch, and get a snack. Give yourself rest days after hard training days, give yourself recovery weeks after hard training blocks, give yourself a recovery period or season after a period of intense racing.

4) Variety. This means some cross-training, but it also means not running the same workouts day after day and week after week. For the most part, the same intensity workout should not be run multiple weeks in a row. (There are exceptions to this of course.) Same goes for distance runs. Even if your pace is similar, mixing up the distance and terrain is also important.

Bottom line:

I really believe that most runners are not running their easy, distance, long runs, or intensity, or maybe all of the above, at the correct pace. The number one best thing that I think any athlete could do is have a conversation with a coach or an experienced competitive athlete and get clear on what your goals are and how your pacing can effectively support you. You might be doing all of the right workouts but 30 seconds off the right pace, and that might be messing up your heart rate or lactate and totally negating the effects of the workout. If you want one simple thing to do to make yourself better, talk to someone who can give you some personal advice on pacing.

If you are a physiology nerd, or you are curious about any of the points I attempted to touch on in this answer, you can see a breakdown of the physiology of one specific intensity workout here: https://enduranceefficacy.files.wordpress.com/2017/06/add-a-little-intensity.pdf This is one of my favorite intensity workouts, and I had a little bit of fun getting super in depth how about it.

This is a fun question because it gives me a lot to talk about, but also a frustrating question because I feel like I don’t have nearly enough information to answer it as effectively as I would like to. I’d be stoked to expand upon this conversation though if the questioner or any other athletes would like to get super nerdy about their training. Just shoot me an email!

Carly Wynn is a personal coach at EnduranceEfficacy.com, and can be reached at efficacy@enduranceefficacy.com.

Jim Burnett says:

Not everyone can run really fast, but anybody can run faster. Physically, you must either increase your cadence (steps/strides per minute) or increase your stride length. The human body has amazing adaptive powers when stress is applied in measured doses over time and when given ample recovery time between workouts. Mentally, you must be committed, consistent and patient. As the process unfolds you must be a keen and sensitive observer and develop your ability to feel what is happening in your body as periodic cycles of stress are applied and relief is given. Reminder, no one has the ability to know your body better than you. Ultimately you are your own best coach.

For starters, I recommend focusing on increasing your cadence and not on trying to increase your stride length. Your stride length will increase naturally as you develop the muscles that drive your cardio-respiratory system and as you strengthen the leg muscles and associated tendons and ligaments that give, tighten and then release as your body springs forward. It’s all about who has the best spring in their legs, particularly from the knee down and the Achilles tendon is the vital elastic band between the opposing forces. By shortening your stride and upping your cadence your leg muscles remain more taught and your foot strikes the ground and is released more quickly. Instead of pounding “bang, bang, bang,” your feet go “tap, tap, tap,” clicking along uptempo. As your “spring” strengthens your cadence will remain the same but your stride length will grow.

An easy way to increase your cadence is to shorten your stride. If you haven’t tried this, you will be amazed how you fast you can run taking “baby steps “tap, tap, tap” while increasing your cadence. Try it out on a track or any smooth and level surface. Warm up then jog slowly for one minute and count your strides (two footfalls), then shorten your stride and increase your turnover for one minute and count again. Ninety strides per minute is a good number to shoot for. Get used to counting your strides and play games like trying to predict how many strides you can take in one minute. Pay attention to how your body feels when you increase your cadence. Many running watches have accelerometers that can determine your cadence real time. Your speed will increase with your cadence as your running efficiency improves. Taking a shorter stride gets you onto your forefoot quicker – “tap”. Picture yourself running across a bed of coals – uptempo indeed.

Remember, it takes time for the body to adapt but it will if you give it time. Blend these cadence exercises into your regular workouts. Dancing on hot coals, how can you beat that, right?

Jim Burnett is the president of the Upper Valley Running Club.

Greg Hagley says:

Running faster seems like it should be simple, but is quite complex.Yet, I’ll aim for brevity with 4 guidelines.

1) Enjoy running. We practice what we like to do.
2) Run often. Aim to run at least 4 times per week.
3) Focus on one thing each run. Run fast when you should run fast. Run slow when you should run slow. Think about running posture.
4) Hire a coach. This can help simplify knowing what paces to run and how long. It can help guide your focus each session.

Greg Hagley is a physical therapist at Dartmouth-Hitchcock in Lebanon and a certified USA Triathlon Level I coach.

Injury Prevention 101: Strengthen your butt!

by Kevin Stanton

My name is Kevin Stanton, and I am a new member of the UVRC who recently moved to Lyme, NH. I am a Physical Therapist at BE Fit Physical Therapy and an avid runner. I have completed 13 marathons (qualified and will run Boston 2019 for the first time!!!), 1x 50k circumnavigating Manhattan, 3x half-iron 70.3 finisher, and 1x full-ironman in Boulder 2015. Over the years I have dealt with my fair share of injuries and know how challenging it can be, mentally and physically, to not be able to do the things we love so much. My hope with this post is that I can maybe help people to prevent injuries that often plague runners.

As a Physical Therapist, I see patients with a variety of different injuries and pain symptoms. After a complete evaluation, the root cause of many injuries can be traced back to a few common denominators, one of which is the gluteus medius. The gluteus medius is one of the three major gluteal muscles located on the outer portion of your hip and buttocks region. It helps to move the leg outward (abduction) / prevents it from collapsing inward, and plays a major role in stabilizing the pelvis and leg, especially when standing/landing on one foot. During weight bearing, the gluteus medius prevents the pelvis from dropping and the femur from internally rotating and collapsing into a valgus (knock knees) position. An improperly functioning gluteus medius can lead to improper alignment and positioning all the way through the neck, shoulders, back, hips, knees, ankles, and feet. This can contribute to common injuries for runners such as runner’s knee, IT-band syndrome, piriformis syndrome, achilles tendinitis, plantar fasciitis, and bunions.

Due to our daily life activities, which consists mostly of straight line activities (sitting, walking, running, cycling, etc.) we tend to neglect this important muscle which requires sideways motions to strengthen. Utilizing the systematic review by Ebert et al (2016) and my clinical experience, I have identified some of the most beneficial exercises to strengthen the gluteus medius. Below are pictures of some of the exercises and progressions. Check out @befitphysicaltherapy on instagram for additional pictures and videos of these exercises.

Please feel free to contact me with any questions via email: Kevin@befit-pt.com or at the UVAC location via phone: 802-359-7400.

Happy Running!
Kevin Stanton, PT, DPT

Finding Serenity at Occom

by Laura Petto

I used to be known as “that girl who runs around Occom all the time” by certain people on campus. And it’s true – for some of 2016 and most of 2017, I mainly ran three, four, five loops around Occom during lunch breaks for most of my runs. I endured (and enjoyed) a lot of teasing from my friends, but those beautiful, repetitive Occom runs never bored me and brought me consistency and peace in a time of great stress.

I struggle with change sometimes – I become very attached to place. My first year in the Upper Valley, I didn’t run that much outside. I missed the sandy, flat runs to the ocean and the familiarity of knowing a place so well that I don’t need to plan my runs, no matter the distance. I didn’t know Hanover and I wasn’t attached to any running routes yet. When anxiety overtakes my mind, familiar routines calm me. Facing a set of exams evaluating the core areas of knowledge to pursue my doctorate in 2017, I was very stressed and without those Maine runs that I knew so well. So, Occom runs – with a distance that could be altered easily by just changing the number of loops but with a route that would always remain the same – became my respite. Not just running, rather running the same place, gave me a sense of stability.

In the winter and spring of 2017, I ran hundreds of loops around Occom Pond. The location is convenient to my office, but the routine, beauty, and community kept me going back. I would lace up my shoes around noon, my head filled with math and greatly needing a reset before returning to that math. The pond was always there for me – a source of equilibrium, remarkable in all seasons, and appreciated by many. Lots of employees take daily lunch walks around the pond when the weather is nice. I saw the same people over and over and got to know the different friendly faces so well – the cheerful woman biking home for lunch, a group of perpetually jovial employees from the building near mine, and a joyous springer spaniel whose energy always made me beam mid-run. When I felt utterly unable to know what was coming next, I had my Occom runs. I mastered the hill – both directions. I got to know particularly gorgeous trees and became friends with some of the dogs. I observed the pond in all sorts of weather and knew where the iciest patches tended to develop in the winter. For about six months, a lonely hat sat on top of the fence, waiting for its owner. Was it claimed by the owner? Did someone else finally decide it had waited too long? Did an animal abscond with it? I thought a lot about this hat and made up stories of how it got there. Sometimes, I thought about math and solved problems that had been out of my reach while just sitting at my desk. But, mainly, I took comfort in striking permanence of the pond. No matter what was changing in my own life, I found a welcome rhythm in Occom runs.  In winter, spring, fall, and summer, the pond was immutable to change.

I don’t run Occom so much anymore. At some point, running five loops around Occom became boring. But that year it my life – it was anything but boring. Those loops brought me stability and attachment in a time of uncertainty. I still add a loop around Occom during a run or walk with our office dogs and I am struck by immense gratitude for this place that became the source of so much peace and renewal for me.

The Survey Says…

For our January survey we wanted to know your all-time favorite running book that you would recommend to a running friend. We received some great responses with a number of books getting multiple recommendations.
Enjoy the results and look for next month’s survey!

Once a Runner by John L. Parker Jr. (x4)

  • Parker was a runner himself at the University of Florida, so he understands the feelings a runner experiences as he or she runs and trains. Plus, the novel is the first book in a trilogy.
  • Makes you feel like a badass for being a runner
  • Motivation and inspiration
  • Very authentic and entertaining

Let your mind run, by Deena Kastor (x3)

  • This was an amazing inside look at the mind and training the American record holder in a marathon. It helped give me an appreciation of what it takes to be great.
  • I read this book when I was physically injured and it gave me a lot of confidence in my mental strength. DK is an AMAZING runner, so it’s easy to have faith in her positivity and her methods.
  • Great job of weaving her personal story of training and growth along with giving inspiration to the reader

Eat and Run by Scott Jurek (x3)

  • Great story Great recipes included!
  • This is the book that motivated me to start running for the first time ever 5 years ago, and now I’m running ultramarathons too! Very inspiring and also full of tasty (vegan) recipes.
  • Killer vegan recipes and crazy ultra-running stories

Born to Run, Christopher McDougall (x3)

  • I don’t have to be as crazy as these runners to appreciate and find inspiration in what they do.
  • It might be the only running book I’ve ever read! It was a gift from a friend and I couldn’t put it down.
  • Really though. I don’t read about running. I read Born to Run, but have been quite dubious of it since.

Running with the Buffaloes (x2)

  • Inspirational and fun at the same time, still with some good detail of an epic (and tragic) college running season
  • Authentic book, very entertaining

What I Talk About When I Talk About Running (Haruki Murakami) (x2)

  • Meditations on the practice of running from a mid-packer
  • As well as a runner, Murakami is a great fiction writer. I really enjoyed reading about someone who, like most of us, takes his running seriously while it is a secondary part of his life.

Running with the Legends by Michael Sandrock
It’s not my all-time favorite, but it’s a good book to read about great runners in the past. Small chapters on 21 runners.

An Honorable Run by Matt McCue
Great book to read as a coach and track runner. Met and ran with the author. Good short read.

Magical Running by Bobby Macgee
Sport psychology prep before every race

Run for Your Life by Mark Cucuzzella.
This book has some great training tips. Like the sect
ion on heart rate training.

The Happy Runner, David and Megan Roche
It’s all about the process……the joy of running…..

North: Finding My Way While Running the Appalachian Trail by Scott Jurek.
Great read on running the Appalachian Trail

It’s not a book, but weekly articles found on the NY Times Running newsletter each week.
It’s full of timely information with links for additional info refreshed each week.

About this Newsletter

This newsletter is put out monthly by the Upper Valley Running Club, the premier (and only) running club in the Connecticut River Upper Valley Region. This month, the newsletter was edited by Amanda Kievet, with article collection by Geoff Dunbar. Any comments, questions, submissions, winter running tips, etc, send to newsletter@uppervalleyrunningclub.org.

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