Perfect running weather today after yesterday’s rain! I did not see any other challengers on the course, but I had the company of the Cornell rowing team and my most consistent training partners… the geese!
Well, my left hamstring is toast after the Thom B on Sunday (my first trail race ever, so much fun, but how to people run THAT fast on the downhill of a trail run?!??). I had planned to attempt the Long Loomis this week, but my friend convinced me to run a flat, easy 5 miles today.
I decided to give the Inlet Course a go, with the intention of seeing how I felt as to whether or not I would complete the entire course. I parked on the West side of the inlet, across from Cayuga Health & Fitness and headed South along the inlet toward Floral Ave. I then ran to the start/finish sign near Green Star and back. On the Treman Loop, I mixed it up again by staying to the right and running counter clockwise.
My first few strides were brutal, but then I settled into a rhythm. I had many negative thoughts wondering how I’m going to get enough trail miles in to prepare for the Fingerlakes 50s 25K, but if I end up injured then I’ll be behind in my other running challenges, and what about the Gorges Half …… and on and on and on for 6.2 miles.
Run complete, almost 6 minutes slower than my PR from a couple of weeks ago, but I accomplished what I set out to do today.
Beautiful morning on the Inlet trail. Lots of adorable baby geese.
Ready to “bulk up” after our run.
This morning, when it stopped raining, it was perfect running weather. So, I decided to run 10 miles, incorporating the Inlet Shore Trail course. The most exciting part of the run was meeting this big turtle on the Treman Park Lake Loop!
Or is it a tortoise, reminding us of the Tortoise & Hare race coming up? I’d say second-coolest wildlife encounter after that massive beaver I saw on the Jim Schug Trail! The turtle was kind enough to pose for the picture, though!
I’m headed to GreenStar to pick up some groceries and then to the Finger Lakes Running store to pick up my BIB for the Gorges Ithaca Half Marathon and buy some more running gear.
Ben and I decided to further procrastinate packing our stuff by going on a run (me)/bike ride + outdoor gym (Ben) on the Inlet Shore trail course. Nothing better than running away from my responsibilities
My most consistent training partners—the geese—were out in full force!
We conveniently ended the workout at Purity where I literally dipped my face in whipped cream
Kieran’s training plan called for a 10K this morning so I told him I knew the perfect place. We dropped Jamie off at the office downtown (as one of our cars is in the shop), and headed to the Inlet shore. Our rather uneventful run passed quickly thanks to our stimulating conversation. I wish Jamie could have joined us but the CDC took precedence.
Made a trip into Greenstar after our run to bulk up, since it is Thursday
I had to pick up gear for the track meet from @gary at FLRC’s storage unit downtown, so afterward I parked by the Aeroplane Factory building and ran the Inlet Shore Trail starting just across the Rt 79 bridge. It’s the first time I’ve done it on my own, and it’s quite a mix of city and nature in one course. I think I saw the osprey (some bird at the top of the high-up nest) with my eyesight, it’s hard to know. Easier to identify were ducks—I’m good at ducks and they’re close up on the Floral Ave side of the trail.
Amusingly, @gary, who’s working on laddering up his mileage, was just finishing his run when I intersected with him again—he’d driven over to Cass Park for a different loop. I tried to keep my cadence high, but after about 5 miles that got pretty hard, even though I wasn’t going that fast.
When I was done, I drove over to GreenStar to get our Instacart order. Have to say, it’s awfully efficient to have someone else do the shopping and just swing by for a super-fast pickup.
After dropping my kids at camp, I decided to try the inlet course again, it being in the 60s, rather than the 80s like last time! It was a gorgeous June day, with a strong headwind off the lake, so one half of the course was certainly more challenging than the other.
Did the Inlet Trail today. It was VERY hot out. This is a fun, flat course that allows for more speed, but I felt like the heat had me hitting the wall pretty early. I’d like to try this one again earlier in the day.
My shop local experience was actually with Finger Lakes Running Company. I was in need of new trail runners so I picked up a pair of Salomon Sense Ride 4. I’m excited to break them in one some of the more trail based FLRC courses.
Posting a few days after the fact… a beautiful breezy, sunny Saturday morning to run this flat pretty course! This course is the closest to home, so my bike ride was only a couple of miles and nearly all downhill so not much of a warm-up. Locked the bike at the community garden on Floral Ave and started/finished on the south turnaround. My hamstrings were super tight initially from so much weeding Friday but they limbered up. Dogged it on Inlet Island but glad that I had some push in the home stretch. Ospreys were fun to watch and listen to on the lake loop, with a blow-your-hat-off breeze out of the northwest kicking up white caps and wafting fishy smells off the shore. Biked home by retracing the Waterfront Trail to the osprey overlook and then took the BDT almost to Taughannock before doubling back home on West Hill to push the cyclometer over 22 miles.
Upon arrival home, I inhaled a few handfuls of fresh, cool blueberries from Kestrel Perch Berries which Tina had picked during the week. So refreshing, sweet, and tart!
I had already done a couple of easy runs on this course, but I wanted a faster time so I decided to do a tempo run. Cass Park is great for tempos because you can get into a groove without worrying about hills or cars. I averaged 6:14 pace. I checked my training log to compare this to previous similar workouts, and it turns out that exactly one year ago yesterday I did a 6-mile tempo on nearly the same course at 6:28 pace. After missing a lot of summer training due to injury it’s encouraging to see some long-term progress in my fitness. (Strava.)
After arriving to the Greenstar Coop parking lot (see East Hill Dryden Rail Trail post East Hill Dryden Rail Trail Star Posts - #41 by buhillrunner), I sat in the car and waited for a few minutes. It was definitely cloudy, but no rain was falling. I checked the radar again and realized the squall line had stayed more north of Ithaca, and the little southern bit that clipped Ithaca was probably the few seconds of sprinkles that fell while I was driving over. So I decided to head out.
Other than a mild spritz as I was approaching the turnaround point to the south, no rain fell. But it was WINDY. Clouds meant shade, which was very much appreciated. I completed this course with a run-for-8-counts/walk-for-8-counts approach, which is what I do when I’m beat but don’t want to walk it outright.
I enjoyed running this course as well and exploring more of the Inlet Shore Trail. It was a breezy and beautiful and I loved seeing ducks and even osprey? That’s what the tall nest and birds looked like anyway. So many monarch butterflies. There are some pretty cool areas there and how great for Ithaca to have this (and the various other pathways) in town for people to stay active on.
In the end, three courses in one day totaled 24.35 miles and I was very satisfied with this distance AND being down to just one course left: the Sweet 1600. I can do that course at the Binghamton University track once my legs have a day to recover.
But I was sooooo thirsty by the time I finished. I preceded to drink what was left of my fluids on the drive home, including any water and Tailwind Recovery. I came home to inhale a bunch of watermelon, vodka lime seltzer, and more ice water. When that cue to drink comes on, it’s amazing how powerful it can be. The reality is that I was likely dehydrated, but it’s challenging to stay fully hydrated during a heat advisory. I’ll make sure I keep taking in extra fluids today.
And one could argue that I didn’t need that vodka lime spritzer! But I earned that spritzer and it tasted divine!
I originally had good intentions of heading back to Eddydale’s for another dozen ears of sweet corn, another watermelon, and more peaches, but I was pretty beat. And I was in no shape to walk into Greenstar (I was literally a hot mess). I was also no longer getting home in time for my daughter’s soccer practice (or dinner). I finally made the call to get myself home, fed, hydrated, and not to mention, SHOWERED. But I loved Eddydale’s and will be back. (I am also still trying to get to South Hill Cider!)
Our car, Wilbur, needed charging so I decided to shake things up a bit this morning and started the course at the dog park, after plugging Wilbur into the free charging station there. The morning started out warm and miserably humid but very quickly the wind of the coming cold front kicked in along with some misting rain. Boy did that feel good! By the time I entered Greenstar for my post -run shop, I was actually a tad cold!
Even though I didn’t park here this time, I still stopped at Greenstar on my way home for some of those delicious apricots @ruth-sproul posted about, as well as a lot of other groceries.
I did my second run of the inlet shore trail this morning, in an attempt to finish all the courses a second time by Sunday. When I ran it in May it was 40 degrees with 54% humidity, and sunny and windy. Today it was 74 degrees with 94% humidity, a headwind from the north, and some light rain. I saw a cat anus.
I also saw prettier views than that.
Since this route is so flat I decided to do a tiny speed workout – 8 x 2’ fast with 1’ rest. I was thinking 5K effort. I’m not very consistent with speed work and I wanted to quit after 4 reps, but I finished feeling good. This run was not as fast as my first time, but I’ll blame that on the weather rather than my fitness.
No local shopping occurred as I squeezed this in early before going to work! I did consume some cheese puffs later, though. Maybe not the best post-run fuel.
This was Simon’s 6th and final course to complete his own Challenge. We steadily jogged the first half, and then jogged/walked the second half, stopping for a snack and to say hello to one of his teachers that he had in Kindergarten. It was a beautiful sunny and mostly cool morning. He especially enjoyed running under the bridges.
To celebrate finishing the challenge, I gave Simon the choice of a treat from Ithaca Bakery, an ice cream cone at Purity, or a donut from Dunkin. A tough choice! He went with Dunkin, where we both enjoyed a Boston Kreme donut. Not sure if it counts as shopping local since it’s a national chain, but it was a great reward!
Today my son @Banyan_Tree and I wrapped up our first ever FLRC Challenge with the Inlet Shore Trail course after completing the Treman 13.1 miler yesterday morning. I’m admittedly more of a fan of wooden trail runs and pretty much loathe doing anything on pavement, but I actually ended up enjoying this course this morning. We’d planned to try and do this course in the evening after the sun went down, but decided to try and get it in during the cooler morning hours today instead and I’m glad that we did. The osprey were nesting, the sun was rising through the oak trees, and it was incredibly peaceful…despite the fact that my calf randomly was spasming on me after yesterdays monster course.
Because my leg was giving me beef, @Banyan_Tree was set with the task of dragging our little aussie pup Frodo along with him which gave him a significantly shorter time that he’d hoped for on the course today, alas, the mission was more to simply accomplish it, rather than get a decent time today.
Once we reconvened after the Inlet Course, (he goes much faster than me) we headed over to the Ithaca High School track where @Banyan_Tree completed his official last course which was the sweet 1600. He had to hop the locked fence in order to do it (Shhhhhh) but it was done and then it was time to shop local~
The obvious choice after completing this challenge course downtown was to stop at Purity for a lentil burger, burger, sweet potato fries and of course yummy ICE CREAM!! Of course Mr. Frodo joined in on the fun with us for the ice cream with his pup bowl, because he too has completed several of these courses with us and was well deserving of the treat.
We absolutely enjoyed pulling off each of these courses! My favorite (despite me getting lost) was the Long Loomis trail, I’d never been to that trail system before and was super excited to learn that I could mountain bike out there too!
As someone who is just starting to run for the first time in my life at 43, after several major physical injuries, I was not at all concerned with my times, but more felt it a challenge to simply do them all. I felt highly encouraged by everyone in the FLRC and will definitely be signing up for it again next year. Maybe we’ll even get my other two littles in on the action too?
So glad to hear this—it was one of the motivations behind the FLRC Challenge, since races can be particularly intimidating for people getting started or starting back up after a long time off.
We’re already planning for next year’s courses!