Stellar Weather (FINALLY!)

We’ve been in this weather pattern the past 2 weeks where it as been fairly  nice on the weekends and absolute crap blah weather during the week.  We had wind, rain, clouds, etc Monday – Wednesday this week and Monday – Friday the week before.  Again, the weekends were good, but getting out of work and having to train in the rain is not my idea of fun.

It all changed this past Thursday.  The rain stopped, the humidity went away and it was a cool and pleasant mid 60’s Thursday night.  This all coincided with the annual Rock N Race.  This race raises money for the Concord Hospital Payson Center.  It’s hard to turn down this race.  It is for a good cause, it is literally right out the front door of my office building.

What can I say,  I love this race.  It has not always treated me kindly, and I usually don’t run my fastest times after working all day.  This year it finally all came together for me though.

I had a pretty hectic work week, and Thursday was no different.  By the time we got out I was ready to blow off some steam with a run and some food.  I was the team captain for my little group, so I had to hand out numbers and play that role.  At 5:50 though it was time to start warming up and getting myself ready.

I definitely prefer cooler weather for running and I jogged up and down Main Street with Erik Paddleford and my nephew Jacob.  Then I took a position towards the front of the field.  Normally I am not overly concerned with being a few rows back, but this race has over 6,000 walkers and runners.  This is not your typical 700-1,000 race.  A good starting position can mean less traffic and a better time.  No messing around for me.

It was  also my first race in the new Saucony A5 shoes too.  I had gotten in 1 run with them and they really felt awesome.  It really is like not having anything on your feet at all.

Anyways, the gun went off and so did I.  I ran my first mile in about 6:15 and knew that was a tad too fast, so I backed off a bit.  Especially since I tended to blow around mile 2 in this race.  Well, we hit mile 2 and I was around 12:50, so it was a 6:25 pace.  I still felt really good and smooth too.  So I just kept hoping for the best at this point.  It’s a small climb out of the mid point of the course and then a good downhill before a quick left and right and on towards the finish.
At this point I was still looking periodically at my watch and was really happy with what I was seeing.  As we turned onto Park Street and into the last few hundred yards, I gave it a really good kick and crossed the line in 20:30, a 6:36 pace which is a new PR for me.  74th overall too!  I was pretty darn psyched!

The two best parts of this are the six or so bands on the course (therefore the name…Rock N Race) and the FOOD afterwards.  There are so many sponsors that really go over the top for all us runners and walkers.  I definitely get my moneys worth from this race.  My brother Steve directed me to the Concord Co-op fajitas this year which were simply awesome and then I hit up my favorite with O’s for their mac-n-cheese which is absolutely killer.

From that point it was cheering on the thousands of other runners and walkers as they crossed the line and also helped raise money for Payson!  What a great night!

Mia leads the Dept. of Transportation team the “Rockin’ DOTS” and she walked with a few co-workers and other people.  Check out the pic below for what it looks like as the 5K starts on Main Street and turns up Pleasant Street.

Lots of walkers and joggers!

So Thursday was great, and Friday turned out awesome for the annual bike/walk to work day.  I got my first bike commute of the year in finally.  I have been lazy this year, but finally got around to getting my act together.  It was good to ride in and back from work, save some gas money and spin the legs after Thursday’s race.  After work on Friday Mia and I did our “Urban Hiking” loop of about 5.4 miles too.

Saturday we had a community wide yard sale at the condo complex and Mia and I made over $100 selling stuff we no longer need.  Then we got in a short and easy 3.4 mile run before settling in to catchup on our Madmen episodes.

Sunday the plan was to get in a long ride.  I wanted to do at least 50 miles today.  Mia and I left while it was about 65 degrees and got in a killer loop of 60 miles in gorgeous sunshine!  I really think today was just about close to perfect weatherwise for the loop we did.

These guys cut through our yard all the time.
Stopped to see these guys about 40 minutes into the ride.
Riding with Mia
One of many old cemeteries on today’s loop
Not sure what was going on here……
These tasted better than they should have about 3/4 of the way through the ride.

So, finally 4 days of nice weather strung together.  I think that is a record for the past 6 weeks.  No worries though…rain in the forecast for Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday coming up.  Oh Joy!?

Thanks for reading.

-Pete

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