Welcome to November, UVRC members! Sorry the newsletter is a little late this month, I had a family issue to deal with which delayed me this month. On that note, if anyone would like to help out as co-editor, that would be really helpful, and also avoid situations like this in the future. You should probably be able to learn to edit posts in WordPress to help out (which isn’t hard), but you will want to be comfortable with computers rather than tech-averse. Let me know (firstname.lastname@example.org) if you would like to help out.
Also, special shout out to the UVRC contributors! By far the most submissions I’ve gotten for the newsletter yet. Especially the Couch to 5K graduates; a lot of inspirational stories from them this month.
Table of Contents
- Letter from a Board Member: Julie Paye
- Things I See When I am Running by Lori Bliss Hill
- Welcome New Members
- Couch To 5K by Scott King
- Couch to 5K by Heather Lancor
- C25K and More… by Nupur Sathe
- C25K by Sally Avery
- 2017 MARINE CORPS MARATHON – October 22 by Mike Gonnerman
- Runner Profile: Pam Hausler by Lorna Young
- Ask the Coaches
- The Lone UVCRer Race Report from the West Coast by Cara Baskin
- Harpoon OctoberFest Reflections by Bill Young
- Race to Save the Mill by Laura Petto
- How to be Injured by Lorna Young
- Trapp Mountain Trail Half Marathon by Jenny Williams
- The Warm-up by Mary Mancuso
- Bullish on Volunteering by Bill Young
- Norwich Turkey Trot by Judy Phillips
- UVRC Tidbits
Letter from a Board Member: Julie Paye
You all either probably have no idea who I am or am shocked to hear I haven’t fallen off the edge of the world or otherwise moved out of the area. While I have been a member of the club for many years, I haven’t been doing much with the club in the past few years, aside from the occasional board meeting. I’ve found it all too easy to get caught up in work and make that a priority over nearly everything else. After the unexpected death of a loved one earlier this year, I took stock of how I was spending the precious hours I get each day. I lost a role model but gained some perspective. He was one of the hardest working men I know but he knew how to balance that with other things he loved as well. That’s something I’m still working on. I am not a fast runner, I haven’t been running my whole life, and I hate the treadmill as much as the next person. I’m never going to win any races, but I’ve come to realize that I need running in my life – even the treadmill – and that I need to make time for it, even when it seems like there isn’t any.
With the holidays approaching, I thought I might share a little reminder to not get caught up in the hustle and bustle of life. Work hard, but don’t forget to run hard too.
On the board, I feel like I represent the voice of the new and/or slow runners. A while ago, before my running sabbatical, I had an idea to get more slow runners like myself engaged in the club. I still need to work out some of the details but I hope I can coax some of you to join me for some low key group runs next year- stay tuned for more details.
Things I See When I am Running
by Lori Bliss Hill
Ankle breaker?.. Pot hole? .. Wash out? Call it what you wish just be careful out there. Surprises like this gem sneak up on us when we’re out running. This safety cone is really taking its job seriously!
Welcome New Members
- Aiden Bettwieser
- Dawn Carey
- Jen Haines
- Laura Gillespie
- Mariska Baker
- Mary Hansen
- Michelle Cinquemani
- Nicole Alvarez
- Nupur Sathe
- Patricia Enneper
- Pedro Alvarez
- Rosemary Collier
- Sally Avery
- Stephen Lauziere
- Tessa Johnson
- Carolyn Stone
- James Schulmeister
- Amanda MacEvitt
- Julie Smith
- Sunil Merumu
- Katherine Hesser
Couch To 5K
By Scott King
Three years have passed since I joined the Couch to 5K program. I am still adapting to running on a regular basis. When I was with the Couch to 5K program, Kim was the main leader with Tim supporting her when she was not available. I came from a background of only running as a kid when my bigger brother was chasing me, or I was trying to keep up with him and his friends as they ran to get away. Then as I got older, sports was the reason; from basketball to baseball and a short period in Jr. High, football. I did not do it because I liked it, as a kid I would have told you I hated it. During High school and for a year after High school I did very little running. It was the year after graduating high school when I did a year of schooling where running 2 miles a day 5 days a week was a requirement. I thought I would hate it but it was quite pleasant. Dorm and roommates challenging each other to run a little faster and further took your mind off the fact that you were actually getting out and running for no reason other than to run. I would never admit to how much it may have hurt to keep up with the guy up front. That was never me. But I found that I actually felt good and liked doing it.
I have done a lot of running since college but not with the purpose of getting better at it. It was not my big brother chasing me again. It was for sports I was playing, or my kids were playing and I needed to be fit enough not to look bad while coaching or helping out. The kids got older as did I, while they got faster I got slower and heavier. I officiate basketball locally and each year and I was finding it harder and longer to get back into shape for all the running you need to do when officiating basketball. I had an injury and needed professional intervention of a therapist. Cioffredi & Associates helped me with the injury and I stayed on their mailing list. That is how I found out about the Couch to 5K program.
While the Couch to 5K brought me back into shape slowly to a point where I could run a 5K, taking the next step was unclear. I would still go to the Couch to 5K trainings on Saturdays to help out. I also go to the TNT workouts with the UVRC and love pushing myself. I find myself running with a small number of people as I am not as fast as others. While circled as practice starts and Kim is looking for times she does call me out for a time, as she knows I will be slower and I will say 9:00 or 9:30. I am the one there for any new comers hoping there are others running a slow pace. There have been others that have run with me, but I have found myself doing my pace and others may or may not join. I am alright with that. I once used to say 10:00 or 10:30 so I have improved. I do not believe that I will ever say 6:00 but I would never have believed 5 years ago that I would have ever done a 5K. Yes; TNT with the running club is daunting; and to be the slowest person running may get to you. Only if you look at everyone else. If you look only at what you are doing and what you have accomplished these past few months. Know this; if you keep doing what you are doing you will be amazed with you. I look forward to having more amazing people running with me at TNT.
Couch to 5K
by Heather Lancor
Just a little over a year ago, a co-worker suggested we sign up for the Couch to 5K. My response was, “I don’t run unless I am being chased by a bear”. I had just dropped off my youngest daughter at UConn and my oldest was headed to Pennsylvania to begin her career. I thought it would be fun to join a group and I signed up online. The next thing I knew, I was shopping for running shoes and receiving emails from Mary Peters. The first Tuesday practice started off with introductions and information about the program. Soon after we were running laps around the Hanover Track. On Saturday, we all met at 8am outside of Omer and Bob’s, which I had to ask where the location was because I had never been there. We took off on the rail trail which was a bit different than the track, but it seemed to be easier for me. I went home and told my husband I think I am actually going to enjoy this. Each week, I learned more about myself and began to start feeling a sense of commitment and also pride. As the weeks passed by, I looked forward to Tuesday evenings and Saturday mornings. I was running close to 3 miles and around a 10 min pace. I enjoyed talking to the other participants as well as the UVRC volunteers who also supported and encourage us week to week.
Soon we were in the home stretch and the Turkey Trot was only a few weeks away and I had my goal set on finishing in 30 mins.
Mary along with rest of the UVRC volunteers: Travis, Angie, Laura, Sally, and Jared continued to support and encourage all of us and even had a potluck for us the week before the race. I remember sitting there at dinner thinking, I don’t want this to end.
Thanksgiving morning I was a bundle of nerves driving to Woodstock, but once I saw Mary and Travis and the rest of the team I felt more at ease. We did a short warm up lap and stretched together. It began to snow so we headed over to line up and soon we were off and running. I was so excited to run my first race I took off too fast. I started passing people and I was running at a much faster pace then I ever had, but it felt great. We were nearing the last mile and had one last hill to get up and all of a sudden I felt like I was out of gas and felt like I was slowing down. Travis was running along side of me and I told him to go ahead with out me and he said, “Nope we are doing this together”. He encouraged me step by step and never let me give up. We came around the green and I saw both my daughters cheering me on so I pushed as hard as I could towards that finish line and crossed at 29:16. I could not have done it without all the encouragement along the way. I cannot thank Mary and Travis enough for their support as I participated in a few more couch to 5K sessions and ran a handful of 5Ks this past year. One included the CHAD Hero where I dressed up as Iron Man. I am excited to say I attended my first TNT practice and look forward to setting some new goals for next year.
C25K and More…
by Nupur Sathe
The Lebanon Recreation and Parks department and the Upper Valley Running Club joined hands to create a program for the community to get active and stay active.
The C25K is a program for people new to running or for others who needed to improve their speed or some who just needed a friend to stay accountable to.
We were a bunch of enthusiasts who wanted to run a 5K race, but each had a different goal for himself/herself. The group had a varied range of ages and skill levels, but all very enthusiastic and supportive of each other. Our coach Mary Peters and other volunteer coaches from the Running club (Jared, Travis, Kristin, Laura and Kim) supported us to really find our goals and reach them.
We learned the techniques of warm ups, cool downs, stretching, pacing ourselves and most importantly giving ourselves credit for all the hard work. Mary would email us the plan for the week, so if some of us couldn’t show up for practices, we still could practice on our own. Others met twice a week, on Tuesday’s at the Hanover track and on Saturday’s at Omer & Bob’s. Mary and all the other coaches were always available for questions and suggestions to improve our run.
At the end of the 12 week program, we all had a successful run, we all were CHAD heroes! The Running Club members have encouraged us to keep running and be a part of the club. I am really thankful to the Lebanon Recreation and Parks and the Upper Valley Running Club for such a great program.
by Sally Avery
As I reflect on my experience, I started wondering where did this all begin? Mine began a year ago or maybe more when one my dear friends, Lori Stevens asked (begged) me to join the Upper Valley Running Club. She would tell me, “You will meet great people!” “You will learn from others and everyone is willing to give advice in areas you need help in.”
In April of 2017 the messages started coming in from her. At first they were subtle, and as August 1st started to approach they were daily. I decided what do I have to lose? I have a love/hate relationship with running. I call it, trotting.
I have done several 5Ks with my granddaughter and thought what is there to learn. Then I thought someone in the group will give me tips on how to run better or stretch better and decided to join.
I got on the website and joined. I have a personal belief if you are paying to exercise then you better follow through. I remember August 1st as if it was yesterday instead of twelve weeks ago. I was sitting at my desk and thinking, “I am not going, this is out of my comfort zone and I will look like a fool.” It came 6:00 o’clock and I was still feeling like I didn’t want to do it.
I arrived at the Hanover high track, got out of my jeep and walked to the entrance. There were people I did not know or recognize. I awkwardly stood there thinking, this is not for me. Along came Lori with a big smile and hug, saying, “I am proud of you!” Heidi St. Peter came over hugged me and said, “Welcome!”
A spunky young lady walked to the front of the group and said, “Welcome to the Upper Valley Running club C25K, I am Mary Peters and I will be your coach for twelve weeks.” She then asked everyone to introduce themselves. After introductions, she taught us stretches and I immediately learned that I have been doing the wrong type of stretches prior to running. Then she announced we will run a minute and walk two for four repetitions.
A group of us did this with Mary right by our sides. She gave advice while running with us and there was this guy (I soon learned his name, Jared) calling out when to walk and run. At the end of all this we stood in a circle and talked about how this felt. I walked to my jeep thinking, “I am going to love these twelve weeks!”
One of the best parts of this program was the weekly emails from Mary. It reminded me I had someone out there looking after me during the week.
Here we are twelve weeks later; I have met some awesome people. I received some great advice on running techniques for myself. I ran weekly with three awesome ladies, Laura, Dawn and Kristen. Jared, Kristen and Mary were always by our sides giving advice. The best part of this experience was the people and the camaraderie from everyone that came each week.
It ended with us running and completing the Chad 5K together. Let me rephrase that, it ended with a group of new friends, great coaches and a wonderful experience that I will probably repeat in the spring.
I plan on continuing to run and meet up on some Saturday mornings at Omer and Bob’s. I know my friend Lori is not going to let me idle now that I have this under my belt. Thank you again Mary, Jared, Kristen for being there for us each week!
2017 MARINE CORPS MARATHON – October 22
by Mike Gonnerman
THE START — 1977
It began 40 years ago, on November 6, 1977, when I ran my first race, the 2nd Annual Marine Corps. Reserve Marathon. The race had 2,718 entrants, including 117 females (4%). It was the second largest race in the US that year, second only to the New York City Marathon. There were 2,655 starters (97%) and 2,323 finishers (87%). After bonking at about mile 21 and walking the last 5 miles, I was #2,032 (see finisher’s tongue depressor below), near the back of the pack.
MIKE IN 1977 – age 35
MIKE IN 2017 – age 75
Here are several paragraphs from the Washington Post two days before the 1977 race:
- “Hitting the wall is a phrase used to describe the body’s utter refusal to run any further, a phenomenon that commonly occurs during the last six miles of a marathon. If your running friend tells you he hit the wall at 22 miles, don’t ask if he ran into an Agriculture Department building by mistake.
- If your running friend has hopes of qualifying for the Boston Marathon, and he finishes a minute or two short of his goal, don’t say brightly, “Well, at least you finished”. Friendships have broken up for less.
- Finally, if you find yourself wanting to run next year’s Marine Corps Marathon after watching this year’s, don’t be alarmed. It happens in the best of families.”
The race has had a few changes over the years, most notably a 10-fold increase in participants (about 30,000 for both the marathon and 10k) and percentage of female runners (47% this year), the addition of the 10K and changes to the course. Unlike this year, the 1977 course looped around the Pentagon, featured a blue chalk line 26m long, did not go into Rock Creek Park, went behind the Capitol and did not go into Crystal City. But, like this year, it started and finished at the Iwo Jima Memorial, was flat and fast and crossed the Potomac at Key and 14th Street Bridges. And, in 1977 you got your T-shirt only after you crossed the finish line!
At our summer gathering this year I told my family I would be doing the 2017 MCM on the 40th anniversary of my first race. The next day my sons and son-in-law said they had talked and wanted to run it with me. Betsy wanted to run the MCM-10K, and our daughter in law Becky said she would too. So, last week our children, their partners and two of our grandchildren gathered in Alexandria for the race – coming in from NH, Manhattan, Brooklyn, Wisconsin, California and Singapore. In all, we had 12 family members there – 4 running the marathon, 2 running the 10K and 6 supporting the runners. Bill Young joined us for the weekend and ran the marathon with me, bringing our party to 13. The weekend turned out to be a series of wonderful family meals interrupted by a race.
We looked for the other UVRC runners, Laura LaMontagne , who ran the 10K, and Keriann Ketcham, who ran the marathon, but did not find them among the 30,000 or so participants.
2017 – The Gonnermans at the expo– daughter in law Becky, Betsy, sons Tobey and Peter and Mike.
UVRC ready to run – Bill, Mike and Betsy
At the start – Mike and Bill taking their bags to the UPS trucks
The back of the shirt Mike wore during the race
Betsy by the Lincoln Memorial with the grandchildren from Brooklyn– Mazie and Tobey
Tobey, Peter and Steve after the marathon
Bill’s post-race nap
Runner Profile: Pam Hausler
by Lorna Young
Town: Wilder, VT
Where are you from originally and what brought you to this area? I am from Massachusetts. I came here 26 years ago because my husband started work in Killington, VT.
What do you do professionally? I am a school nurse.
How long have you been running competitively? I have been running competitively for the last 10 years.
Why do you run? I run because it is my go-to way to feel good.
Recent memorable moment while running? My most recent memorable moment is running the Vermont City Marathon and having my daughter watching and cheering me on.
I also love running the CHaD half marathon because many of my students are watching. I love when you say at school, “I saw you running!” They are so excited to see outside of school. Some kids think that the staff lives at school.
If you like to race, favorite race distance? Why? My favorite distance is the half. I think I have a special place in my heart because I love the Covered Bridges Half marathon.
If you like to race, notable race moment? OR most memorable race? My favorite time was when I ran Vermont City one weekend and then Covered Bridges the next weekend. I was so proud of myself for the training discipline and was able to run sub 2:00 in the half marathon for the first time.
Favorite local running route? My favorite running route is in Norwich. I have a good friend that I meet each morning to run. We are icons on our run. People will say, “We saw your lights this morning.”
Favorite post run treat? Love chocolate milk!!
What made you start running? I ran a 5K and felt so good. I decided that I wanted to try and run longer. I asked my friend (who I run with each morning) if I could join her regularly and the rest is history.
Who is your running “idol”? I would have to say Joan Benoit Samuelson. I run the Tufts 10K and many times she is there running it as well. She is inspiring and she is there cheering us all on.
Why did you join UVRC? I joined the UVRC to be part of a running community. I hope to be able to take advantage of TNT. I have done it a few times before and it was great.
Ever been injured? How did it happen? I recently had issues with my hip. It was a very humbling time to realize that you need to be grateful for every day that you can run.
Hot or cold weather runner? Luckily, I like running in the cold weather. People do not understand how I can get out and run in 5 degree weather. You have no choice living here, because we have so many cold days. I do sometimes use the treadmill and you can understand why people call it the dreadmill.
Morning or evening runner? I am definitely am a morning runner because it feels good to be able to run when other people are still asleep. It is my time.
What is your motivation? My motivation to run is that I have my best days when I run. I feel great and have the energy to get things done.
Ask the Coaches
Got a question for the coaches? Send it to email@example.com and I’ll send it on!
During intervals, my cadence floats between 175 and 190, with an average of 180. However, my stride length is a little short for my height. I’m 5’10” but my stride average is around 1 meter 18 or 1 meter 25. Are there workouts that you would recommend to improve stride length? Squats, hill workouts.
Have we talked about over striding and how to correct it?
Warm up for all three with a couple miles of easy jogging. For uphill strides, find a steep hill and run up for 15-20 seconds. Effort should feel equivalent to 5k pace and focus should be on your… stride! Focus on following through at the end of each push, using your feet for that last little bit of spring and your arms for added momentum. If strides are new for you, start with 5 reps. For more experienced striders, 8-10 reps is good. Rest by walking down the hill for 1-2 minutes in between. Start by adding uphill strides to one workout per week. You may wish to work up to twice a week.
Downhill strides: Find a gradual to moderate grade and run downhill for 2-3 minutes. Effort should be equivalent to tempo. Run up to four reps of three minutes each, with 2-3 minutes jog or walk recovery. Start with low reps…downhill running will leave your quads sore! But these strides also help guard against quad soreness during/after future workouts and races. Once every couple of weeks is good for this workout.
Resistance training! A lot of runners don’t do it. There’s many ways to achieve resistance training. Squats and lunges are a good place to start. Aim for 8-12 reps, 2-3 sets. I also recommend a few body-weight strength exercises: The Step Stride, Curtsy Lunge Hop, and Eccentric Calf Raises are all favorites of mine. If you are unfamiliar with these exercises I have videos of them on my website (https://enduranceefficacy.com/work-with-me/products-and-freebies/) Click “Start Today Strength.” Resistance training should be done about twice a week, ideally with different exercises for each workout. Start with only a couple sets and work your way up to three.
I wrote an article for this newsletter a few months ago detailing how to do an awesome hill workout and why it makes you a better runner. That totally applies to this question! If you want to read the article is is also on my website (same page.) Click “Add A Little Intensity” to learn exactly how hill repeats will make you a stronger strider.
The Lone UVCRer Race Report from the West Coast
by Cara Baskin
What do you do with yourself when you’ve just come off the high of your first Ironman and aren’t ready to quit? You squeeze every bit of fitness out of that training cycle and sign up for a few more races. Within weeks of moving to my first city and finishing the triathlon (yes, in that order. I don’t recommend it), I was ready for a dose of the calm, green and beautiful Upper Valley. So, instead of planning a trip back to leisurely drink a beer at Worthy Kitchen, take a hike up Holt’s ledge, or stick my toes in Post Pond with all my east coast adventure buddies, I decided to do what any normal runner would do and sign up for the VT50k. Now, let’s be real. There was a little bit of FOMO (fear of missing out) involved. Kevin, Kevin’s twin Taylor, Vanessa, and Robert, who all crushed the Mont-Tremblant IM a month before, were set to run the 50mi (Kevin and Vanessa) and 50k (Robert and Taylor). What kind of friend would I be if I let them have all that fun without me?
The weekend approached, and another sensible idea popped into my head. If I’m going to go run around in VT, why don’t I give myself a little warm-up by finishing up my last 3 VT 4000’ers beforehand? Living in San Francisco hadn’t presented many opportunities for hiking, unless you counted the 20% grade walk to my car in the morning. And, having finished the NH 4000’ers mere hours before moving to California, I certainly missed it. So, the morning after flying back to NH, I scooted up to Mt. Abraham, and then Mt. Mansfield, to find some foliage and peace and quiet. I woke up the next morning, looked out the window from Norwich, and found myself staring at the peak of Mt. Killington. “I’m not sure this is a good idea, but I have to do it.” A few hours later, and my legs were sufficiently sore enough to be ready for a 50k the following day.
Sunday arrived, and I repeatedly told myself that enough caffeine and carbs would eliminate the fatigue of 17 miles of hiking in the two days prior. Heads up- this is not true, but a girl can dream. So the crew, joined by the rest of the crew- Max and Leslie, ultra runners to-be and the most prepared runners for the race- toed the line and started off on a little run on what turned out to be the hottest day in VT in 2017. Walking up the very first hill in mile 1, I caught up with familiar faces and laughed at myself for being so tired 5 minutes into the race. This was going to be a long, hot day. In 93 degree heat, with very little focused ultra training, let alone trail running, I decided that I had no expectations and would not compare myself to last year’s race. This worked wonders. I was so happy to be in the beautiful woods, knowing my friends were somewhere out there too, that I caught a second wind around mile 10 and never looked back (well, only to avoid being run over by a mountain biker). I ended up finishing 4th woman overall, 1st in my age group, pretty dirty, and on cloud nine. I also ended up with a prize of maple syrup, but I didn’t want to surrender my hard-earned sugar to the TSA, so I left it in its home state where it would be put to good use. The rest of the crew ran amazing races as well- because they are badass UVRCers! The power couple at it’s finest, Kevin finished 5th place overall and Vanessa finished 4th place overall female in the 50 miler. Robert and Taylor finished the 50k without complaint, as the seasoned ultra runners that they are. Max and Leslie finished their first ultra side by side, with a good amount of dirt and blood between them, and still with energy for huge smiles. These are the types of friends everyone needs!
Post race, with post-race beers, post-race showers, and plenty of snacks, I couldn’t help but remember my last running goal for 2017: qualifying for Boston. It was only at this point that my friends called me crazy. Seriously? Only now? As comfortable as I was at that moment, I was ready to squeeze out the last drop of fitness. My coach, The Endurance Drive’s one and only Jim Anderson, had been tactfully helping me to simultaneously recover from the IM, string out the fitness, avoid injury, and make time for tours of wine country. Side note: wine in moderation is a great way to carbo-load for a big workout.
How hard could a road marathon be without the swim and bike beforehand? Two weeks later, I met Robert in Oregon for my shortest, fastest race of the year: the Portland Marathon. We had a whirlwind of a weekend planned with a whole 33 hours to spend between arrival and departure in a state I’d never been to before. I was nervous. My last track workout was 3 months prior on Dartmouth’s track, and I hadn’t run over 13 miles in 6 weeks (sans 50k, but that’s a lot of walking!). But, I knew Jim had thought this through. He convinced me I was ready as much as I tried to prove him otherwise. Having missed the qualifying time by 42 seconds the year prior, I felt that I had a lot riding on this race. I didn’t want to waste the opportunity. I didn’t want to let my friends down. So, I showed up on race morning and apprehensively nuzzled in with the 3:30 crowd. The course was an out and back (this was a mental race). The weather was low 60s and perfect. I was oddly calm like I forgot this was going to hurt. At mile 1 I saw 7:41 on my watch. Ok, that’s a good pace. Just stay calm. Mile 2- 7:35. Ok, this is good. Just stay calm. Mile 3- 7:39. Maybe Jim does know what he’s doing? Just stay calm. I decided to be happy with every mile split and see how many I could run under 8 min. pace. This positivity, just like in the 50k, worked wonders. It turns out I can hold that pace for 22 miles. Then my wheels get a little loose. The lactic acid was building up, my shot blocks were waning, and the 3:25 pace group I managed to find and hang on to was slipping away. I already knew I had a PR and qualifier in the bag if I didn’t blow up. I also knew that this was my last big effort of the year and I only had to focus for a few more miles. 4.4 painful miles later (don’t you hate when the course is long?) I crossed the line in 3:27:02. An 8.5min. PR and immediate soreness and happiness! That should be enough to get me into the lottery. I eagerly awaited Robert’s finish and witnessed his 30min. PR after one hell of a year of training. What a beast! With all missions accomplished, we hobbled our way off the course to find sushi and wine as fast as possible.
So what do I plan to do until Boston 2019? Well, for now the plan is to adventure the life out of California and to join a running club. The support I’ve gotten from each of you for 2 years in NH and now from across the country, is incredible. It’s a community like I’ve never had before. UVRC is a magical thing that can never be replaced, and the fitness and friends I’ve gained are incredible. Thank you for all the support, the workouts, the beers and your enthusiasm. I’m excited to continue following your running, racing and adventures from here!
Harpoon OctoberFest Reflections
by Bill Young
The Runners Bucket List: “200 Races To Run Before You Die” by Denise Malan does not include the Harpoon OctoberFest in Windsor Vermont, but should. Pour it into the “Chug-a-Lug” chapter along with “Lundi Gras Barathon”, “Hangover Run” and “Tap and Run.” There is no booze on the 3.6 mile hilly course but a beer stein of water at the finish, glass boots and/or cases of beer for winners plus a lot of ridiculous beer related costumes. The Bucket List does include our “Covered Bridges Half Marathon” with Mike Silverman as Race Director and UVRC Pacers.
“What I like best about the Harpoon Run.” comments from random UVRC runners follow.
Best parts were the team atmosphere and party after. Getting a beer stein of water at the finish is a great touch as well. Great to see you all there!
The down-down-down hill finish is definitely my favorite part of the race. I can fly. Since the Harpoon 3.6 mile course is an out and back, the up-up-up hill start is my least favorite.
The autumn weather, oompah music, bratwurst with sauerkraut, Heidi outfits, crowd scene and UVRC friends always make this a fun run.
Best part: winning beer. Better part: enjoying it with imported friend and Bill.
Worse part: feeling like a a bird with avian flu, struggling to fly (or run).
Best Part: Winning a case of beer in my age group. Better part: Giving half of it away to friends. Everybody’s happy!
Best part: The last 1/4 mile downhill to the finish as you hear over the loudspeaker,“The beer tent is open”. Also hanging out with friends after is fun (when you eventually find them as there were a lot of people there)!
Worst part: This year the combination of the hills & heat made for a challenging race.
Runner up for a combo of good & bad: Won a 24 pack as age group winner but then had to carry 1/2 Mile to my car.
Jess Knott (imported British athlete, beer critique and FOL (friend of Lorna)):
No ‘worst’ parts for me – not even jetlag! Loved every second of soaking up the atmosphere and enjoying the Vermont scenery. Well worth the 3,000 mile journey the day before!
Race to Save the Mill
by Laura Petto
The Race to Save the Mill was started in 2010 to raise money to repair and preserve the East Grafton 1823 carding mill. The Grafton Historical Society helps organize the race, along with an excellent historical preservationist. After the race, some of the runners go visit the mill (a very short drive away) to see the progress since the previous year. Since I moved to the Upper Valley in 2015, I’ve been wanting to run it, but grad school and injuries have prevented me. I finally made it this year, and it is one of the beautiful courses I’ve ever run. The race occurs at the peak of the fall foliage season, highlighting old barns, classic New England stone walls, and marvelous mountain views. There’s a 5k and an 8k run. It’s not an officially timed course, and there’s very little competition between the runners.
I ran the race without a set goal in mind. I’m coming off an injury, and didn’t want to push myself. I hadn’t run much in the past month, and I wasn’t sure if or how much my shin would hurt. I went with two friends to the race, and really just wanted to enjoy the course and meet up with some old friends from college. The course is a large loop which ends with about a mile and a half on the rail trail. The beginning is all uphill, with about 250 feet of elevation gain between .5 and 1.25 mile points. I didn’t prepare for this at all! Even without a set goal time, I wish I had strategized. My first mile was very slow – 10:06 – and because I didn’t know the course, I wasn’t in the right mindset of how to approach the course. The second mile was still a bit uphill, and then mainly flat, allowing an easy 8:55. My leg was at a low level of pain, so I picked up the pace to run a tempo pace for the final three miles, at or below 8:00 for each of them. These final few miles are when the course really shines! There are a few twists and turns which result in surprising and spectacular views. The course changed from pavement to a dirt road – almost a trail – which was much easier on my legs! There were beautiful old barns and a view across the horizon of mountains, speckled with phenomenal leaves of all colors. It’s a very quiet race – the roads aren’t closed, but I think I saw one car during the race – and there aren’t too many runners. After an initial heavy effort, you can cruise the second of the course easily. I ended up with an average pace of 8:34/mile, which I was thrilled with given a shaky start and coming off an injury!
The race finished up with a delicious homemade lunch of various homemade soups, stews, and chilis, with warm cornbread and dessert. It was a quintessentially local race – the same core people run it every year, some people dress in silly costumes, there are fun new t-shirts every year, and it’s for a good cause. I can’t think of a better way to celebrate fall and life in the Upper Valley than running the Race to Save the Mill. I definitely plan on running it again next year!
How to be Injured
(or how to cope with injury!!)
by Lorna Young
As most of you who know me, I would class myself as a serial-injured runner. I have been running for many years (22 out of 29), yet for the past 12-13 years I have had my fair share of injuries (typically around 6-10 months out of the year, I will be injured). These range from “niggles” that cannot be explained, to diagnosed injuries including, IT band knee pain, Achilles problems, plantar fascitis, stress fractures. The list is ongoing. Importantly, I am not a particularly high-mileage runner (when I’m running, my average will be around 30 miles/week).
So here is a short report for those in despair, and looking for some hope, light at the end of the tunnel.
5 important points to remember (in no particular order):
- You will heal (unless it is incurable): It will take time and a lot of patience, but one day you will be pain free, from this injury at least.
- Get good advice, but don’t waste money & time: Seek advice and help from a PT or doctor you trust, they know best (but also see #3 below). If you don’t see an improvement over a given time, of which they say you should be improving, something isn’t right. Is it them, is it you? I find it useful to note your pain out of time, daily or weekly. You should see an improvement as time progresses!!!
- You know your own body: If you are an experienced runner, you know your own body better than anyone. Have you had this injury before? How did you heal? Have you been given exercises to do, but you feel they are making the recovery slower? If so, tell your PT/doc. If you are less experienced, you may not know what works so well, but generally (and honestly, not every injury is the same), if an activity makes the injury worse, don’t do it (I would say it should not feel worse after a few hours of doing said activity). Also, if you are less experienced, ask other runners if they have had the same problem as you are having, how did they recover? Most injuries are common among runners.
- Rehab, rest, recover: Anyway you can. Rehab: Advice from others, and the Internet can be helpful if used safely! Perhaps a change in diet may help, wearing a different shoe during the day may help alleviate some of the pain (Achilles). SLEEP is very important.
- Be smart.
How to stay sane:
- Cross train! What cross training activities can you do, that don’t aggravate the injury? You most likely don’t want to sit on your arse, just because you are injured, so seek another activity that will keep you sane! Also, being active is most likely going to help with the injury, to help circulation (NOT ALL injuries though; don’t do anything that makes it worse). So I would find something you “like” to do, and keep fit doing that. For me, I cross train on the elliptical (in winter). It is boring as hell, but I use the time wisely, I may talk to people on the phone, read, listen to music, what ever I can do to pass the time. Other cross-training activities I enjoy: spinning, walking, ELLLIPTIGOOOOO, cycling outdoors, & aqua jogging. Aqua jogging can be extremely boring, but I truly believe it can keep you as fit as running, albeit you may lose a little speed. I ran my 10k PR off 1 run a week, plus 1 hour aqua jog a day. Think about adding cross training days into your usual running regime, if injuries are happening often.
- Remember getting injured is normal, and everyone goes through it. Stick with it; you’ll be back.
- If you have more time to do other things in your life, take it. You’re likely not racing for a while, so what can you do with that time on a weekend?
- Keep connected with other runners, but I would advise not stalking people on Strava or Facebook and get sad about “missing out”. No good will come from that.
- You won’t get unfit from missing 2 days off running. If you are hurt, don’t try and run through it, especially those first few days. Be patient.
Finally, think about why the injury happened in the first place?
- Mileage & intensity: the general rule is don’t increase your mileage by more then 10% per week. Similar don’t increase mileage + intensity at the same time.
- Running terrain: what terrain do you run on? I truly believe running off road can severely help.
- Does stretching help you usually? If so, do it & don’t be lazy. I really recommend Yoga!!!!!
- Same goes for rehab/core exercises. Trust me, they can go a long way.
And a final word on cross-training…
Without cross training I would probably not be running still, and definitely not being somewhat competitive. I highly recommend it even when you are both injured and non-injured, but be warned, ANYTHING in excess is not good (running, cycling, elliptical). I recently stopped using the elliptical every day, and just decided to run, mixed with some cycling/Elliptigo (sometimes my running days have only been 2 miles.) I ran the most consistently, since from when I can remember (approx. 26 weeks of no injury wahoo), and have been able to run OK in most races!
Trapp Mountain Trail Half Marathon
by Jenny Williams
I was a cross-country runner at Dartmouth and have been an avid trail runner for the last 20 years. I went through a period where I did trail races, and then realized I was not running fast on the downhills – too conservative. I was not happy with my times and places in these races, so I stopped – seems silly now! In the last 4 years I’ve been doing a few sprint triathlons each year. The swim is my hardest leg so I come out of the water at least half-way back in my “wave,” but then am able to pass some folks on the bike and pass many more in the run. I run a 23-24 minute 5K which, while not all that fast for the average runner, puts me at the top of the run segment of most tri’s for women in the 50-54 age group.
All to say: triathlons are fun and a great way to cross-train, but I was still hankering for a trail event. I chose the Trapp Mountain Marathon at Trapp Family Lodge on October 14th – they host a half marathon and marathon on their gorgeous ski trails, heading up to Round Top. The course was impeccably marked, with aid stations at miles 4 and 9 (healthy running snacks, no plastic cups but they help you re-fill your hydration pack) and very friendly volunteers along the course. I knew the course would be challenging (1,988 feet of elevation gain on the half-marathon course; 5 miles of it on steep single-track), so I set a very broad time goal: just come in under 3 hours. In a triathlon I am going flat-out for 90 minutes or so, stressing about every second lost. In this event, I simply ran as much as I could, hiked the steep uphills, and enjoyed every second. I traveled to the race alone, but about mile 3, I met a nice young woman from Cabot Vt who had only been running for a year – we ran and talked together thru the finish. At one point, we observed that while we definitely felt the effort, we did not feel pain, due to the very forgiving surface. About mile ten, we had summited Round Top and were making our way down a steep, narrow single-track, when I heard a polite male voice behind me: “Ladies, I’m just going to sneak by you…” I turned around and immediately recognized Brandon Baker, a talented ultra-runner from Lebanon NH. The marathoners had started at 8 am – an hour before the half-marathoners – and were doing 2 loops, so I realized that Brandon was about 3 miles from the finish of the full marathon and was in the lead! We cheered him on and he did indeed win, in a time of 3:38, which is astounding given he climbed nearly 4,000 feet!
After summiting Roundtop it was pretty much all downhill, first on circuitous single-track but then on nice wide, soft carriage trails – a true boon to tired legs. As we came into the finish, I noted my Garmin measured the mileage at 12.6 vs 13.1, but I’m going with the “it didn’t capture every inch due to tree cover”- it felt like every bit of 13.1 miles! My Garmin time was 2 hours 50 minutes or just under 13 minutes per mile – a lot slower than my 5K pace, but then again, time was not the point in this event! I also took pleasure from the fact that my Strava “suffer score” was “Epic,” as my heart-rate was above 140 (high for me) for nearly 3 hours.
Every runner receives a lovely Trapp Family Lodge beer glass, which they will fill with beer from their own brewery, if you wish. I asked for half a beer and then filled the rest with gatorade – trying to simulate the European “Rattler” (beer + lemonade), and trying to stay sober for the drive home.
I encourage any and all UVRC runners who are curious about a trail event to try the Trapp Mountain Marathon next year – we can carpool! Set aside your normal thinking about pace and just enjoy and great romp in the woods!
by Mary Mancuso
What’s the most important part of a race? The warmup, of course. It’s easy to skimp on it, or even skip it altogether, but you will never run the best race you can unless you run the best warmup you can.
Years ago I used to feel smug when I’d pass people after the first part of a race. I’d think, “Ha! They started out too fast!” I never considered that maybe I had started out too slow. But you see, without a good solid warmup, you do start out too slow. Way too slow. Those people I was passing were probably all warmed up and running a good solid even pace, and I was speeding up because I had started out cold.
So what constitutes a good warmup? It depends on the individual, the weather, and the distance. You need to try different things to find your sweet spot. For a 5K race, I like to arrive early and run the whole course. That’s right, all 3.1 miles of it. I don’t always do this, but I try. After the warmup I change into my dry race clothes and do some stretches and plyometrics, and hopefully I’ll time it right so I’m still warm and sweaty when the gun goes off.
A five mile or 10K race doesn’t start out at the same furious pace as a 5K, so two miles is usually adequate for me. Then the same stretches, a quick change of clothes, a cup or two of water and I’m good to go.
I’m running in a 10 miler this weekend. I’ll probably walk a bit and run about a mile, and try to not run too fast in the early miles of the race and die at the end. A couple of years ago I ran a 10 mile race that had a timing mat at 5 miles. I ended up doing about a mile easy warmup and pretty much even splits for the race. I was happier about the even splits than my overall time.
For a half marathon, which is about as far as I run anymore, I might not do any running before the race but I’ll use the early miles as my warmup. I won’t get even splits but I won’t die at the end either. I just have to be careful to stick to the plan, and not get caught up in the adrenaline and first rush and end up starting out too fast. I will make sure I walk around a lot and stretch ahead of time.
So, what works best for you? Do you know? Try different things and see. You’ll want to warm up longer on a cold day than a warm day, more for a short race than a long race, and bring extra clothes, especially a shirt, so you don’t have to start out soggy. If you haven’t been adequately warming up, I think you’ll be pleased with the results once you do. Who knows? You might ever set a PR.
Bullish on Volunteering
by Bill Young
Bulls and Moose have been following UVRC runners around the Upper Valley. Why you may ask?
The first moose was spotted at a Storrs Pond Picnic and Fiddlehead-Five (K) Run on the roller coaster.
The second moose, also carefully camouflaged among elite athletes, appeared at an over-the-river-and-through-the bridge water stop during the fantastic Foliage Five.
No moose at the Vermont 50, but a Texas long horn cousin joined the UVRC AID Station. No bull.
Three cheers for the picnic planners, race organizers and volunteers.
Norwich Turkey Trot
by Judy Phillips
Please join us! Come out and support the Haven. It’s a great way to start the day, meeting friends and neighbors, and helping neighbors in need.
This wonderful event was established by the Turco Family/Norwich years ago, and has become the unofficial kickoff to “The 19 Days Of Norwich, 1% For The Haven”, a great effort created by Dan Fraser in 2013.
I’m hoping for cold, clear weather this year!
Last year the field grew to 500 runners and walkers, a record turnout, up from less than 100 participants years ago.
There is no registration fee, just, if you can, bring a cash, food and/or clothing donation to support the Haven, meeting critical needs in the Upper Valley.
Please share with your friends and neighbors, and come and join the fun!
- WHAT: 9th Annual Norwich VT Turkey Trot to benefit the Upper Valley Haven
- WHEN: 9am, Thanksgiving morning (Thurs, November 23, 2017)
- WHERE: Gazebo on the Norwich Green
- WHEN: 4.4m or 2m trot and/or walk around Norwich, VT
- WHY: Support our neighbors via the Upper Valley Haven & enjoy community, fresh air pre meal
(FREE TO PARTICIPATE, CASH/FOOD/CLOTHING DONATIONS ENCOURAGED)
Got a short thought, or just a picture, for the newsletter, but not enough for a whole article? No problem, send it along and we’ll put it here! firstname.lastname@example.org
Seen at the Chicago Marathon
Exactly one of these runners has won their age group in the New Hampshire Grand Prix (pictured: Mary Dunbar and some other guy):
About This Newsletter
This newsletter is put out monthly (more or less) 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 Geoff Dunbar. Any comments, questions, submissions, running puns, etc, send to email@example.com.