From Coach Jerry:
What a great weekend for GRC! The list of excellent performances is long, but there’s no question that the coveted GRC Athlete of the Week award goes to Drea for her stunning PR of 58:50 at Cherry Blossom. That was truly a breakout race, and it’s surely the GRC performance of the year so far. Drea had never broken 60 until Sunday, and she skipped the 59s and jumped directly into the 58s. It sure looked to me like Drea had more gas in the tank at the finish, and we’re going to see more fantastic running from her this spring, and beyond!
Sticking with the women, Beth also had a huge breakthrough at Cherry Blossom, running a 90 second PR of 60:47. Now that Beth is fully healthy for the first time in a year, she is starting to tap her huge reservoir of talent, and there are more big PRs coming this spring. Susan also ran a very nice PR of 61:24, and is making a successful transition to the longer distances. While LTO’s 61:15 was not a PR, it was the grittiest performance of the day, as LTO was dealing with her very severe cherry blossom allergy which affected her not only on race day, but also in the weeks leading up to the race. LTO is never one to make excuses or back down, and she fought hard all the way to the finish, despite extreme discomfort in her chest. The final excellent women’s performance of the weekend came from Maura at Raleigh Relays. Maura ran her track 5k debut, and as luck would have it, she ended up in a heat that was too fast for her, so much so that she went through the mile in 5:29, and was in dead last. It got worse before it got better, as with 6 laps to go, Maura was 100 meters behind the field. But Maura fought through that very tough strecth, passed two girls in the final 800, and ran 17:50, which would be solid under any circumstances, but which was outstanding in these circumstances. In a more conducive competitive environment, Maura will run much, much faster this spring.
We had numerous excellent performance by the men as well. On the track, Sam ran 14:26 in Raleigh, the second fastest 5k of his career. Sam went through 2 miles in 9:05 and was on pace for a big PR, but he started his cooldown a couple of laps too early. The next time Sam goes out on PR pace, he’s going to hold on, and shatter his club record. We also had an excellent performance at 5k on the track from Ryan Hanson, who opened is season with a very comfortable 14:46 solo effort in St. Louis. Ryan is getting off to a late start this year, and he will be ready to peak when the big races roll around in April and May. In addition, Sam Boimov ran a very solid 15:28 at Maryland, his best race, by far, in GRC singlet. In the shorter distances at Maryland, we had a new club record of 1:55.6 in the 800 from Big City, and a strong 800-1500 double from Witty, as he went 3:58.9 and 1:57.2. Witty is getting stronger every week, and he will do some damage later this spring at 800, 1500, and 5k.
And of course we had several excellent runs from the men at Cherry Blossom, led by Dave Burnham’s PR of 51:23. Dave has PR’ed at 10 miles and the half-marathon in the last 3 weeks, and he’s making his long awaited return to the track at Penn Relays. While Dave does not expect to threaten his 10k PR of 29:41, he is fitter than he has been in several years, and he’s on his way to regaining the form that made him a star at Dartmouth. While Karl did not approach his 10 mile PR, his 51:25 was an excellent performance because his training this year has been severely limited by illness. Karl is now on the path back to race fitness, and will be ready to roll later this spring. Jake also did not PR, but his 52:32 proves conclusively that his comeback is right on schedule. No one wants to succeed more than Jake, and for the first time in almost two years, he has every reason to believe that he can run PRs in the near future. Other notable performances at Cherry Blossom came from Dave Wertz, who ran a huge PR of 53:21, and Luke, who made a successful 10 mile debut in 53:15. Finally, we had some very solid runs from our Boston group. Dickson led the way in 53:05, showing he is ready for a big PR in 2 weeks. Also looking ready to PR in Boston are Chris, Murph, and Breezy, who ran 54:54, 56:15, and 58:03, respectively. Congratulations to all on a job well done!
Finally, in the all-important intra-squad Cherry Blossom team competition, the clear victor was Team Keith, with an outstanding total time of 6:24:01, and an average time of 54:51, as opposed to Team de Heer, with an utterly pathetic total time of 6:30:29, and a 55:41 average. Those of you who ran on Team Keith are clearly wonderful human beings. Those of you on Team de Heer, for shame. How do you live with yourselves? Team Keith members can claim their free drinks at the season-ending party on May 26. Team de Heer members have until then to slink out of town, hanging their heads in disgrace.
For the mens workout this week, there are several options. Hanson and Witty, who are competing at Colonial Relays on Friday, will be working out with me on Tuesday in Virginia. If anyone wants to get in on that, let me know. On Wednesday, there will be several possibilities for the men. Sam is going to do 8 x 800 with a 3:00 rest, 2 @ 2;16, 2 @ 2:14, 2 @ 2:12, 2 @ 2:10. The track guys who are not racing this weekend can work in with Sam to help him get through this challenging workout, and anyone else who wants in is welcome. I’d like the Boston group to do 3 x mile, easy, medium, hard. Exactly what easy, medium, and hard means will vary upon your goal pace and your level of fatigue from yesterday. If you’re not running Boston and you don’t want to work in with Sam on those fast 800s, give me a holler and we’ll figure out what is appropriate for you.
I’ll send the women’s workout separately.
See you Wednesday at BCC.