Stu’s 30K - Clinton, MA - March 2, 2014
|Tired but standing at the Stu's 30K finish|
Photo by Krissy Kozlosky
I put the Stu’s 30K on the schedule as it made sense for a few reasons. I am running the Boston Marathon so I figured that a steady long run would be suitable. The race is put on by Central Mass Striders and wanted to support it. I was also driving back to the North Shore from the US Snowshoe Championships so it was not hard to veer off Rt. 2 and into Clinton for 18.6 miles. Race director Evelyn Dolan put a shirt to the side for me. I ran a 2 mile warm up with Reno Stirrat (former CMS member way back in the day). The first mile brought back some memories of when I ran this race back in 1997 when it was a USATF New England Grand Prix Championship. My goal for the 2014 version was to keep the pacing between 6:30 and 7:00. I was a little sore from the snowshoe race 24 hours earlier. If I had fresh legs, I would have wanted 6:15’s or better. I went about the earlier miles easy and settled in the top 20. It was hard to let guys get away over the next few rolling miles but I had to run smart. The miles went by quickly as I was engaged but not worried about my place or who was passing by or pulling away. The course is hilly and I actually preferred the incline portions more than the declines. I stopped by each water stop which had Gatorade at the 2nd table and took it in. I took the one GU I carried and then another I got at a specific table late in the race. The legs stayed together but I was really tired all the way. I expected that but it is all about the big picture. The last hill was memorable passing not one but two Polar Beverage store front signs. They are symbolic - bet they were also there in 1997. The hill is a major slap in the face with less than a mile to go. I wrapped up the race in 18th place in 2:03:37 – 6:38 pace per mile. I was tired enough to not bother with a cool down. I was a lump of coal in the cafeteria after I changed into warm clothes and got some Chowder and Fluids from the happy volunteers that included CMS President Stephen Laska and CMS coach and women's manager Barbara McManus.