Sunday, October 26, 2014

State Meet And State Champ!

Yesterday we headed to Thetford for the X-C running State Meet. Thetford has a tough course (very hilly) and they run great races. The State Meet is held there every year along with the Woods Trail run so we get to race on the course twice a year.
We did a taper this week to see if we could get a little extra energy and run faster. We used this as a test for our ski season... lets see what happens if you are training quite a bit, then taper down for one week. Regardless of each individuals results, it should help in figuring out what to do during the season. Most of the kids set PR's and for the ones who crushed their previous best, we can be pretty confident that at any point during the season, they can get a bump by backing off for a couple days. We call this a false peak....train alot, then back off and have extra energy. For those who didn't improve, we need to look at other things; where you up late studying, did you forget to pee before the race, were you too nervous or too relaxed..
The goal is to get faster and faster, but there will always be times where that doesn't happen and it is important to realize this and try to learn froom each experience.
There were 8 races during the day. The State has 3 divisions based on school size. Each division has a seperate race and then there is a JV race for all runners who are not in their schools top 7. Even though we only have 100 students, we get put with the D1 schools (most of whom have over 1000 students).
Above, Katharine dukes it out with 2 others for the lead at 2 kms.
Ana with a couple Mt Anthony girls.
Mae ran a very strong race, moving up through the field to place 10th in D1, 12th overall and set a PR by 39 seconds.
At 3 kms, the lead "pack" is down to 2.
Alex charging hard. She was dealing with a side stitch the whole race and never really got going the way she had hoped to.
Pip at 3 kms. She started faster than usual and faded a bit at the end, but it was great to see her go for it. Even with the fade, she was only 8 seconds off of her PR and 40 seconds faster than last year.
STATE CHAMP! Katharine ran a great race and set a PR by 40 seconds.
The "Riz" had to pee...opps...9 seconds off of her PR.
Sophie ( PR by 22 seconds) and Alex at the finish.
Ana working hard. She was just a couple seconds off of her PR.
The boys team looking happy and relaxed before the start.
And..they're off.
Kam and Will.
Adam grimacing from his shin splints. We thought we had rested his shins enough for the race, but they flared up so he just jogged the course.
Koby knocked 52 seconds off of his PR!
Ben improved by 45 seconds :).
Neil ran well on the tough course (I think this was his first time on the course).
Koby at 3 kms. Even though he is not a  natural runner, it was good to see that his energy was good and he had a big improvement.
Lafe gets our "runner of the day" with a PR by 1:13! He was expecting to be in the JV race, but got bumped up when Russell rolled his ankle and Eli caught a nasty cold. Lafe responded with flying colors and had a really good race.
Kamran was our top gun and knocked 16 seconds off of his PR.
Will, like Pip, went for it! Also like Pip, he faded a bit...but..he still set a PR by 51 seconds. Awesome to see him gaining confidence and getting faster.
Koby at 4+ kms, still charging hard.
The girls JV (aka Challenge) race start.
Lillian is one tough cookie. She doesn't really enjoy running (yet) but she pushes hard and is getting faster and faster. She also plays on our soccer team so she has had a busy fall!
Going for the uphill pass :).
Mehana showing determination and grit. It is exciting to see her progress this year.
What's so funny? The 3 amigos chillin after the race.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Late Fall Running

     As the foliage is waning and the weather is turning rainy, the team has been keeping their spirits high as we anticipate running at VT State Champs this weekend. State meet, which is the last race in our series this fall, gives us a great chance to see how we stand among many fast teams and individuals, and allows us to compare our times to the Woods Trail run, which was at the same course. Since State Meet is our final race, and arguably the most important, we are building this week to create a 'false peak,' where we back off the training in an effort to race as possible.

   So, the other day, we went running on a continuous loop at the Sun Bowl nordic trails with a series of light, whippy and fast pick ups. The quick speeds don't tire us out too much, but loosen us up and help teach us how to be smooth.

Here are some shots from Tuesday's run.


Check back in to hear about states!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Greenwich Invitational

The picture above is the sunset last night as the rain cleared out.
Today we worked on skate speed this morning and then traveled to Saratoga for the Greenwich Invitational. The races were held at the Saratoga Spa and with good weather, it was a great setting for the 700 runners.
Our racing started with Anna L in the Jr High race. Anna started around 15th place (above), but came home in 3rd.
While the Jr High girls were racing, Sam T (Freestyle coach and coach of our non nordie runners) took the girls out for course inspection. Sam grew up in the area and ran x-c so he knew the course well.
Anna charges home.
Our boys were next out in a large and strong field.
It was pretty cool charging past the historic buildings.

Adam and Russell led the boys with Kamran, Ben and Neil close behind. The boys placed 7th in the team standings.
The girls start (above) didn't have too much yellow up front....
But KO came in ahead and alone. With 5 girls in the top 25, we placed a close second in the team standings.
Pip has been getting faster each race.
Ryosuke and Gavin (our two alpine boys) ran well but were shocked by the numbers of good runners.
After the race, we all went out to dinner before heading home. Good job by all!