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Attackpoint - performance and training tools for orienteering athletes

Training Log Archive: TomN

In the 31 days ending Oct 31, 2017:

activity # timemileskm+m
  Orienteering6 7:50:13 20.19(23:17) 32.5(14:28) 105515c
  Hiking1 7:05:00 17.1(24:51) 27.52(15:27) 1600
  Road running7 5:24:01 35.81(9:03) 57.64(5:37)
  Total14 20:19:14 73.11(16:41) 117.66(10:22) 265515c

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Tuesday Oct 31, 2017 #

Road running 43:38 [3] 4.9 mi (8:54 / mi)
shoes: Adrenaline 17 Gray

Easy run in the mid-morning. Temperature started off in the 40s, but sunny and warming. My pace was faster than I thought.

Sunday Oct 29, 2017 #

Orienteering race 2:04:03 [3] **** 8.0 km (15:30 / km) +325m 12:53 / km
15c shoes: Spirit OLX (last)

QOC PWNF Red. The weather forecast was pretty dire -- thunderstorms, rain, wind, rapidly falling temperatures -- but it turned out to be quite mild. I got there early (rather be on the high side of those falling temps) and it was gray and wet but only a few raindrops. But still, no place for eyeglasses. I kept a handkerchief balled up in one fist to clear off my magnifier.

The course by Nadim was very good. Lots of route choice and tough placements. The forest was just great. Open and runnable, with as good visibility as you can have on a gray wet day. Some light green that was passable, and some downfall that was mostly avoidable.

A little trouble getting the feel of things at the start, but then I settled down and had a good series of legs through the middle, but the running was quite a bit slower than I expected. Part of it may have been due to being deliberate and careful, but part of it was that I was just slow.

I was ragged on the last 3 controls, and particularly the last one, following the wrong stream (for the second time today) and taking a long time on the recovery. I don't actually understand how I got where I did. But it was a long, physical course, and no doubt tiredness was a factor.

If the Classic Champs terrain is anything like this (and there's reason to believe it is) they're going to be great.

Friday Oct 27, 2017 #

Road running 30:24 [3] 3.2 mi (9:30 / mi)
shoes: Adrenaline 17 Gray

A short run in the late morning just to get the gears turning.

Thursday Oct 26, 2017 #

Road running 1:10:44 [3] 7.3 mi (9:41 / mi)
shoes: Adrenaline 17 Gray

I've been running my regular distance too fast. Today I slowed down, and enjoyed the long run.

Tuesday Oct 24, 2017 #

Road running 49:50 [3] 5.7 mi (8:45 / mi)
shoes: Adrenaline 17 Gray

Goddard perimeter road and antenna range.

Sunday Oct 22, 2017 #

Orienteering race 1:46:00 [3] 7.1 km (14:56 / km) +200m 13:05 / km
shoes: IceBug Olx 4

SVO Rocky Ridge on a beautiful day. No QOC event today, and this venue is only 1.5 hours away, with terrain that is not too common in the mid-Atlantic, so it seemed like a good idea. As it turned out, the Red course offered plenty of running on nice trails in nice woods, but the control placement was more on the Orange level, with obvious attackpoints and catching features nearby in nearly every case.

I was determined to take all opportunities to go cross-country, but I lost a lot of time as a result. The right way would have been to take trails around to the nearest attackpoint at every control. My way got me into plenty of rocky areas, which I almost always failed to navigate correctly.

I'm the first to admit I'm not very good in rocky terrain, but as I've improved in general, I still can't understand the mapping here. I think there's a relative standard being used, viz., a half-meter boulder in an otherwise featureless area is mapped, but a 1m boulder in an area full of larger rocks is not. At least that's my working theory. I was tempted to retrace my steps and test this theory on several occasions, just for the sake of science, but it was too easy to just go for the nearby catching feature and move on.

Saturday Oct 21, 2017 #

Road running 36:10 [3] 4.0 mi (9:03 / mi)

Slow run in perfect fall weather, sunny and 70.

Back home from Maine yesterday, with a stop in Boston and wretched traffic the whole way.

Tuesday Oct 17, 2017 #

Hiking 7:05:00 [3] 17.1 mi (24:51 / mi) +1600m 19:15 / mi
shoes: Roclite 280-2015

Grafton Loop, West Side. I did a solo hike on this wild and remote trail in the northern Mahoosucs, something I've been wanting to do for some time. I started at the southern trailhead at 8:30 a.m., 36 degrees, clear and sunny with hardly any wind. The trail goes over 2 major peaks, Sunday River Whitecap and Old Speck. I had been to the Whitecap about 10 years ago, shortly after the trail was opened, but that time we opted to retrace our steps back. For not much more effort, you can continue on to Old Speck and down to the northern trailhead, which is what I did today.

When I was a kid, Old Speck was said to be the second-highest mountain in Maine (after Katahdin) but it's been demoted to 4th. It's not a destination peak though, because getting there is steep and unrewarding. It's on the A.T., just north of Mahoosuc Notch, so a lot of hikers traverse it and wish they didn't have to. But doing it as part of the Grafton Loop is not too bad. The ascent starts from 3000 feet or so, so only the unrelenting descent down to the notch is left.

Sunday River Whitecap, on the other hand, is one of the best summits in the White Mountains. You can see it from everywhere, but before the Grafton Loop trail was built, there was no way to get to it. It's still not easy, 6 miles in, but it has an outstanding view of the Mahoosucs, Grafton Notch, and the northern peaks beyond, full 360. In the fall foliage it was sublime. The bare-rock summit is a protected Alpine zone.

The trip took me 7 hours end-to-end, but I had thought I might do it in 6. It was a fine hike on a fine day, bitterly cold on the mountaintops, where the trees were covered in rime ice and the landscape was wintry, but by moving fast and adjusting outerwear I stayed comfortable. Only one other person on the loop trail, but there was a group of 4 and one solo on the A.T. section.

Now the East side of the Grafton Loop remains. A little longer, at 20 miles or so, but should be possible in a day. I've hiked various parts of that one too, but not the long central section.

Sunday Oct 15, 2017 #

Orienteering race 52:55 [4] 3.4 km (15:34 / km) +140m 12:54 / km
shoes: IceBug Olx 4

Finally a good run, after a long dry spell. The technical difficulty backed off a notch today and I felt like I could stay in contact while running. Highly enjoyable terrain. I overran #9, sure I was heading straight for it but couldn't match up the terrain, and spotted it easily on the way back. I went straight from 9 to 10 but I wish I'd taken the road. I believe it was quite a bit faster, and the straight route was a little shaky when I lost track of the marshes in the middle of it. But the run vaulted me from 5th to 3rd in M65.

Saturday Oct 14, 2017 #

Orienteering race 1:05:23 [3] 2.7 km (24:13 / km) +120m 19:49 / km

I got lost going from the start to #1. I was sure I would find the stream and reentrant, but I didn't, and wandered around in the swamps for a while. When I heard the start whistle and it was coming from the wrong direction, I knew it was time to bail. So, followed the whistle back to the start and tried again. Found it this time, but still not good.

I began to read the map a little better after that, and the proof of it was a good route to #3, threading the needle between the hills. For #4, I went up the trail to the intersection with the big boulder, took the stone wall to its end, then picked up a trail and promptly lost it. So I headed SW to the nearby hill and stayed in contact all the way to the control.

At that point I got into a train of about 4 orienteers and wasn't a competent enough control picker to be able to do anything but follow the crowd, although I finally got some running room to the road and up to the finish.

Wednesday Oct 11, 2017 #

Road running race 48:37 [5] 10.0 km (4:52 / km)
shoes: Adrenaline 17 Gray

The Fall 2017 Goddard Space Flight Center 10k. This is a free, timed 10k, held twice a year on the mostly natural surface trail around Greenbelt Lake. The only catch is it's on a Wednesday at noon.

It's 4-2/3 laps around the lake, measured years ago by John Sissala, a certified USATTF course measurer (and NASA employee). Today was 70s and muggy, overcast, with rain in the forecast. No rain fell during the race, but it rained before and after.

I've run this course many times, and although the lap lengths are awkward, I've developed a method of pacing. Today I figured 8 minutes for the first 2/3 lap plus 4 9s would get me 44:00, and 9 plus 4 10s would get me 49:00. I wanted to be closer to the lower number, but it wasn't to be. Actual lap times: 8:15, 10:01, 10:06, 10:07, 10:01. Total 48:37. Much slower than I hoped for, but pretty good splits, indicating a steady pace.

I was totally dead afterwards. I went back to work, showered, ate lunch, sat down at my desk and thought about what to do next. The answer was, sleep or die. So I went home and obeyed.

Sunday Oct 8, 2017 #

Orienteering race 1:20:15 [4] 7.8 km (10:17 / km) +270m 8:46 / km
shoes: IceBug Olx 4

Short Stumble at Fair Hill. I kept up a good pace the whole way through. I only navigated on my own on one leg and parts of 2 others. From 4 to 14 I followed Andras, and we picked up a third guy for much of that time. On the last leg from 15 I passed them and got behind Victor. I have no idea how we came through the green part, but when we popped out into the field Andras was back ahead. I closed the gap a little, but he finished ahead of me by a few seconds. And deserved it, because he did almost all the navigation.

The course split up the pack pretty well on the first few controls. They weren't technically difficult, but there were good route choices. I took the road around to #1, and saw that it was faster than going straight, so I took trails whenever possible from then on.

The event was fun, but it wasn't really orienteering, at least the way I chose to run it.

Wednesday Oct 4, 2017 #

Road running race 14:38 [5] 2.0 mi (7:19 / mi)
shoes: Adrenaline 17 Gray

Goddard Space Flight Center Fall 2 Mile Race. Nice day, a little warm for anything longer, but at least it wasn't humid. I felt kind of slow, but I was happy to see the 1-mile split at 7:20, and then the second mile was a couple of seconds faster. I had good speed up the final hill and passed about 4 runners there, but one of them got me back on the downhill. Slightly better time than last spring.

Road running 30:00 [3] 2.5 mi (12:00 / mi)
shoes: Adrenaline 17 Gray

Jogging to and from the race plus warmups.

Sunday Oct 1, 2017 #

Orienteering 41:37 [3] 3.5 km (11:53 / km)
shoes: Roclite 280-2015

Corridor training repeat. Better this time. No backtracking, but I must have been parallel to the path a couple of times, kept going because I figured I could spot the upcoming features, which worked. So the whole course completed but out of the corridor a couple of times.

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