2006 was a very busy year for me. It began in January doing promotional work for the Orange county marathon in California for Race Director and coach, Bill Sumner, and will and as it has for 30 Years with our bill Rodgers running center sponsored Jingle bell Run on December 10th, in Boston, by our store. Please join us!
In addition, I ran some old favorites, The Gate River run 15k in Jacksonville, Florida. in march (7:13 pace), the Credit Union Cherry blossom 10 mile in April (7:10 pace), the Utica, NY Boilermaker 15k (77mins! my slowest race of the year!), where my brother Charlie passed me by, the BIX 7 mile (60 mins!-my slowest ever), and in August, it hit about 7:10 pace on a beautiful low humidity summer day; that was fun!
At the start of the year, many of my races were in the 8 min /mile. In August I experimented with more stretching for my hips, as I have a short left leg, and that made me feel more biomechanically balanced when I ran and I took my average race pace down about a min/mile over the last months of the year.
Also, I threw away the orthotics Iíd experimented with for several years (they made me feel more wobbly!)I began doing more balancing/stretching exercises, and with a new focus hope to be very competitive in the 55-59 age group in 07.On the other hand, 40 runs/races is a lot to do is a lot to take part in ,no matter ones age, and travel and promotional work leaves one fatigued a bit; nevertheless i love my job of traveling to races around the country doing promotional work and meeting runners!
2007 will begin my 41st year as a road runner, having celebrated my 40 Anniversary at the Manchester 5 Mile Road Race in Ct on Thanksgiving Day; my favorite day of the Year to run. Iíll run it with my brother Charlie, brother in-law Vin Pranitis, and my sister Martas daughters husband, Brian Harding. Manchester is where I began my road racing career as an 18 yr old Newington HS Senior. I did win the HS division that day, so this is a full circle, going back to my roots sort of day.I hope you all find your selves in a good pace Thanksgiving Day as I will.
2006 was also a year when I returned to some big name races, like the Crescent City Classic 10k in New Orleans (see you there in 07 as well!),the Bellin Run 10k in green bay Wisconsin, which celebrated a 30 Year Anniversary this June, as did the One America 500 Festival Half Marathon in Indianapolis in (see you there in may 07!)And it was great fun to run in the 30 Anniversary Crim 10 mile in Flint, Michigan in August as I re-united with two of Americas greatest Distance runners; Greg Meyer and herb Lindsay; both michigonians; must be something in their water, that state has produced a lot of American Talent!
I ran 7:07 pace at Crim, my best race of the Year. I did some new races as well; the Run For Reason 5k in Ann Arbor michigan was a moderate sized event of 500 but was big in spirit and hopefully in impact as its function was to raise awareness about the positive role in reducing the destructive effects on ones health through inactivity/poor diet, which could lead to Diabetes, a major killer of Americans. The Univ. of Michigan Neurology dept and several of their researchers and doctors initiated and worked or ran the event; that is what I l LOVE TO SEE; medical people walking the walk; running the run, and sending the right message of PREVENTION to their patients. In September I did the Monadnock milers 5mile (35:09) in a downpour, which we hardly noticed as the beauty of the state Park we ran through, and the terrific cookout that followed, with pumpkin pie for desert sweetened us up!
he two Races that stand out for me the most in 06 are the Arctic cruise marathon in early August and the Ohme Marathon in Japan in February. Winning the 1975 Boston marathon led to an invitation to sister Marathon Ohme, and as I won that Race, I was invited back for their 40th Anniversary Race. My 16 year old daughter Erika, joined us. Though she is recently anew runner, she was more interested in Japanese language, music, and culture than the Race! Old friend/rival, and now Coach, Toshihiko Seko, started the race, and that brought back old memories of our marathoning Days. the arctic Marathon (Cruise North)was nature lovers trip, with visits to islands inhabited by polar bears, musk ox, and walrus and caribou. This Land is Inuit country, and I enjoyed meting some of the Inuit who ran in the Marathon, and introduced us to their ancient sporting Quests. The highlight the Arctic Marathon was running part of the Race with my daughters, Elise and Erika.
Thatís the Best Of running; with your family and friends in the beauty of Nature.