Week #10 Recap

We’re 10 weeks into the FLRC Challenge, and Adam Pacheck has set a standard that’s going to be hard to beat. The Cornell grad student threw down a 4:36 mile on the East Hill Rec Way today to take the top spot by 3 seconds. That gives him the lead in all seven courses he has run so far, leaving just Danby Down & Dirty, Thom B., and Forest Frolic. Could he sweep the Challenge? Or will we see more competition from track and cross-country stalwarts Sam Lagasse, Alex Drazic, Mik Kern, Adam Berkowitz, or Rich Heffron? Maybe there’s some other dark horse out there just waiting for summer weather?

Changing gears, Gabrielle Woo has made good on her dare to run all 10 courses in a single week. That may be easier than the FLRC 100K Ultra Challenge requirement of running them in one day, but it’s still a tremendous accomplishment—congrats, Gabby and Sam the Dog! Will anyone else attempt the insanity?

Speaking of the FLRC 100K Ultra Challenge, I haven’t had a chance to tune in yet, but our own Pete Kresock (still in the lead in the Most Miles competition) was a guest on the Running Inside Out podcast, where he talked about the Ultra Challenge, the Ithaca running scene, and more. Give it a listen!

Props to Karen Ingall and Liz Hartman for joining the club of those who have completed all 10 courses! And a big leaderboard welcome this week to Liz Kluz, who has already recorded four runs on three courses, and Steve Folsom, who has some catching up to do with his wife Holly Folsom, who has picked off five courses so far.

Particularly for those who haven’t yet run the Danby Down & Dirty course, don’t miss tomorrow’s group run, led by Mickie Sanders-Jauquet. It’s an awfully pretty 6-mile trail course with some good hills. Meet at 8:30 AM at the parking area on Michigan Hollow Road.

Finally, we’re almost 4 weeks into the FLRC Kids Challenge, and the Ithaca running youth have posted some impressive numbers. Collectively, they’ve run almost 300 miles, and kudos to Toby K. and Phoebe S., the first two kids to pass the 25-mile mark. We’re sending personalized virtual race bibs to each kid who hits 25 miles, and we expect a few more to do it this coming week.

Remember, it’s never too late to sign up for either the FLRC Challenge or the FLRC Kids Challenge, though catching Pete Kresock, Aaron King, Heather Cobb, and Gabrielle Woo in the Most Miles competition is going to get tough.

Until next week, keep challenging yourself, and do post some pictures!

Thank you for sharing the speedy times from the Ithaca areas elite, kudos to those running the challenge courses, they must have wings on their feet. Now I would love to hear some tales from those who consider themselves slow, the hikers and walkers adding up miles on courses covered in snow. Has anyone done extra miles (like me) by taking a wrong turn, I saw an interesting cemetery, and found a new trail to learn. Some of us might be slow, but we too have tales of glory, our efforts are mighty and strong, please share your amazing story.


Thanks, @kag22, I had literally just started drafting up a new topic about this!

The big one for me is that the Challenge has gotten me back into running. After being largely retired since 2013, and with several false starts trying to get back into things in the years since, this has finally been the motivation I needed to get started again.

I ran more in April than any month since 2015, I’ve already run more in 2021 than in any of the past 4 years, and my Black Diamond run last weekend was my fastest 10 miler in almost a decade.

Most importantly, I’m not forcing it: despite the competition side of things pushing me, I’m not running when I don’t feel like it (that’s a new concept for me), and painful 10 miler aside, I’m enjoying myself whenever I’m out there!


Excellent, thank you for sharing! This has been a tough year and I struggle to motivate myself just to get out the door on my own. This has been a fun challenge, and I found myself wishing there were going to be more courses to visit. It’s nice to hear I am not alone in my efforts.


Thanks, @kag22 and @steve-desmond for sharing your stories! I very much do want the Challenge to highlight folks who aren’t the fastest, and I think it’s doing a good job of that with competitions like Most Miles, where @heathercobb3 is very much in the running, and the fact that @Jamie was the first person to complete all ten courses. And of course, I try to call out people who do things like post their first run to the leaderboard or complete the Challenge, which are unrelated to speed.

But an inherent limitation of the leaderboard is that it can pull out only data that can be quantified, so it’s tricky to say much from it beyond the numbers. Sometimes I can tell that several people ran together from the Activity Log, but that’s about it. So if I’m going to pull out any color for the recaps it will come from noticing something on Strava or hearing directly from someone.

All that’s by way of saying that YES, I strongly encourage everyone to post their stories about interesting things that happened on their runs. I’ll be sure to say something about that in next week’s recap as well.

My runs haven’t been terribly interesting as I build back from some calf strains. On Friday, I rode the ElliptiGO in to the Cornell Botanic Gardens to run with @bobtalda, which was highly enjoyable. The run was, that is, not the ride, which was into such a strong headwind that I had to pedal hard downhill just to keep forward momentum. It took me about 5 minutes longer to get to the course start than it normally takes me to get all the way in to Teagle Hall when I’m running with High Noon. Going home was better. :slight_smile:

And today I had another nice run with @apacheck and @hubitron on the South Hill Rec Way, which worked out OK for my calf though it felt tired at the end and I was a little worried. And before the run, @Mike_S and @mmeister cruised by and chatted briefly. So all in all, a fun week running with friends.

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And @aaronking32 just took the lead in most miles!

This is turning into a hotly contested race—good work, @aaronking32. And course, now that @heathercobb3 is back from all that vacation, she can get back to work too. :slight_smile:

As one of the slowest, I can respond to Karen’s request. For me the challenge is a big incentive to come back from an injury and when I run a course I can feel I am in a virtual run with the others who’ve that course. I once had a friend who was regularly dead last in the Ithaca 5… but he would say “I beat all the 50-year olds [his age that year] who stayed in bed today!”.


Everyone still has a week before I’m back full force, but once I am, watch out!!

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I can hear Diane Sherrer, who would have been 70 this week, saying in regard to a dearth of competitors in our elevated age group, “Everyone was invited.”

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Shelly, how about a lightning visit from Israel, you can run all the courses within one or two weeks.

Actually, if I pass my Covid test (I’m studying hard!) I’ll be in Ithaca in a few weeks. Semi-injured, so how long will it take me to walk/run them?

Hey, nice to hear you’ll be back—hopefully your visit will overlap with some races like Thom B. or Tortoise too.

The FLRC Challenge is about 100K all told, so you could probably run/walk the courses in two or three weeks, assuming a day off between efforts. The question is if the longer courses would be a problem to complete given your health.