Thursday, January 8, 2015

2014 - A look back

2014 is over and it's time to open a new running log and close the old one.  First, one more look back at my year of running and racing. 

The numbers:

I ran a total of 2,338 miles for an average of 45.0 mpw.  This was a pretty low number for me and is similar to 2006 and 2005, when I ran 2,363mi and 2,426mi respectively.  I started running in 1994 and I just didn't have the same fire to train hard that I did a couple years back.  I also had one running injury to the plica of my left knee which kept my winter miles very low.  That was my first running related injury in a long time and it was caused (I think) by doing a couple 20+mi runs on slippery snow covered roads.  Lesson learned.  I'm better off hitting the trails if there is snow on the roads and doing long runs with micro-spikes or snowshoes, something for good traction.

My highest mileage month was August with 270mi for a 61.0 mpw average.  August is always my highest mileage month.  I have summer vacation and I'm usually building from July into August with the goal of racing well in the fall.

My lowest mileage month was May with 128mi for a 28.9 mpw average.  I don't really have a good reason for the low miles other than a lack of desire to train hard.  I did go on a class trip to Rhode Island for a week which makes it difficult to get the miles in, it's also the track season and I had practice and meets.  The kids had a great season and I had two individual State Champions, both in the 400m.  I've now been lucky enough to have 3 State Champs over my years of coaching.

I raced 22 times.  Which is a little on the low side.  I'm usually racing closer to 30 races per year.
I won 7 of those races.  5 of those races were trail races, the longest being the Pisgah 23K and the shortest being the Friends of Pisgah 10K.  I won 2 road races, the Chesterfield 10K (which has some trail and dirt roads) and the Granite State 10miler.  Obviously, I had some success in my own back yard.

Some high lights of the year:

I had a blast running the Presidential Traverse in July with Ferenc.  That was something I've always wanted to run.  We had a great time in the mountains.  I came away from that run with a huge amount of respect for the guys and gals that have set and reset the FKT there.  It's a rugged route and I would need to be in top shape and do a lot more running in the mountains to even have a chance of sniffing that FKT.  RESPECT!!

I really enjoyed racing the Big River Half Marathon.  Bob Jackman and I were locked in a tight race for the final 8+ miles and it was a super fun course and I was happy to get the win.

It was cool winning Run with the Beavers 10mi again and finishing up as the RI Triple Crown Champion.  That series would be a heck of lot more competitive if Mike Galoob and Bob Jackman could somehow race in the events that they direct.  Still, it was an honor to win and finish with a perfect score.

I loved getting back to Greylock and Monroe, two of my favorite trail races.  I got out climbed by Jonny at Greylock which was an eye opening experience for me.  I was able to bomb the descents and finish in 3rd place.  At Monroe, I was able to lead wire-to-wire and hold off a pretty strong field for the win. 

Now some of the low lights of 2014:

For the second year in a row, I did not set any PR's.  I didn't even break 16min on any 5K's this year.  (I only raced 3 5K's and 2 were XC races though).  I did set a personal best (PB) on the Chesterfield 10K course running 2min faster than last year on the 2yr old course. 

I had a very disappointing indoor track season.  I ran a 4:29 mile first race of the year and then I followed that off with a disastrous showing at the New England Master's Meet.  I tanked to a 4:46 mile and then rigged to a slow 2:10 800m.  Yikes!  I think a big part of this blow up could have been running in micro-spikes for the week leading up to the meet and running too fast in a workout the weekend before the meet.  My legs were dead and had no pop to race fast.

I didn't race any snowshoe events this year.  I need to remedy that in 2015 and get back on the snow.  The events are low key and super fun.  They also put a little hair on your chest and make you tougher for the spring racing season.

I barely did any track workouts.  I did some consistently in January and then I only got to the track a couple more times throughout the year.  If I want to race fast again, I'll have to get back on the track consistently.  When you're not training hard and feel out of shape, sometimes it seems to make more sense to go run 8-10miles rather than hitting the track for a workout.

Finally, Lil Rhody was not a good race for me.  I went out too fast and faded badly failing to run in the 45's, which for me is a solid time.  Mike Galoob went on to break the course record (one I had been trying to get for years) and everyone else seemed to run personal bests.  "The willingness to win, means nothing without the willingness to prepare" is a quote that comes to mind for me.  I wanted to win for the 8th time, but I just didn't train hard enough and put in the miles to be successful at one of the most important races of the year for me.

Goals for 2015:

I'm going to steal the Zen-like running idea from my brother, Jonny.  I want to enjoy all the running I do and be satisfied with the race results I produce as a result of my training or lack there of.  I want to go to races and have fun with the fitness I have and put in the best race I'm capable of on that day and not worry about the "what ifs". 

If I get super motivated to train hard, then I will.  If I'm not as motivated that's fine too. 

I'd like to do some more adventures in the White Mountains.  Perhaps a Pemi-Loop?

I'd like to lift weights year round with more consistency and effort.

I'd like to do more running with my brothers, Glenn and Jonny.

Do some mountain adventures runs/hikes with my wife, Jen.

Mountain bike more this spring and summer.

Do yoga after runs.  I used to be like Gumby. Now, I'm kind of stiff and inflexible.  I used to do yoga after every run. I've not been good about that the last couple years.

Stay healthy

Those are my goals for 2015.  I'm looking forward to another fun year of running!


  1. Nice recap, Greg! I'd love to cross paths again at some point in 2015. Maybe for the Pemi Loop - never done it but interested as well.

    1. Thanks! I would love to do the Pemi Loop with you and a few others. It would be a blast!

  2. Sounds like a good year is on tap. Can't wait to help you with one of your goals ;)

  3. Excited to run with you in 2015! Good recap.

  4. Quite a year, Greg. I like the Zen approach for 2015; just having fun can be a great motivator. I hope to see you at some more RI races this year.

  5. Definitely! I'm planning on Brrrlingame and Big River for sure.

  6. Nice 2014 recap, and I like your goals/approach toward 2015. Looking forward to some trail runs and races with you guys this year!

  7. Good recap. Looking forward to seeing you at races and meets in 2015. Perhaps we can hook up for some runs.