Friday, December 17, 2010

Snowshoeing in the CVNP

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This afternoon I met my brother and Dan Bellinger in the Cuyahoga Valley National Park for a couple hours of snowshoeing.  This was my first time wearing the new snowshoes that I bought last week and they performed really well.  We had a great time and enjoyed hiking through approx. 8 inches of snow in areas that weren’t packed down.

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

I’m Back!


The arch of my left foot started to get really sore during the 2nd half of Bills Bad Ass 50K last month and lingered around for awhile afterwards, so I decided I better take some time off to rest it.  I believe what I’ve been dealing with for the past 4 weeks is plantar fasciitis – a common injury among runners.  The other day I felt like I was finally turning the corner though and could start running again.  So, of course I picked today to do it, with temperatures in the teens and sub zero 30 mph wind gusts.  I guess you could say that the weather elements gave me the added incentive I needed to get outside and challenge myself.  Winning a spot in next year’s Massanutten Mountain Trails 100 miler for the 3rd year in a row has also helped rekindle my fire.  Even though I felt some soreness in my left arch after tonight’s run I felt pretty good overall during the run.  I’ll just have to keep reminding myself to gradually increase my mileage to avoid any issues.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Bill’s Bad Ass 50K

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For the 2nd year in a row I proved to be a bad ass at Bill’s Bad Ass 50K by finishing in a time of 6 hours, 49 minutes

Click here for complete results and photos.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Oil Creek 100 Miler

 OC Buckle
Today I earned my 3rd 100 mile belt buckle by finishing the 2nd Annual Oil Creek 100 Miler in a time of 31:35:57.  It wasn’t easy but my pacer Suzanne Weightman did a great job keeping me on track throughout the night and into the next morning.  The hardest part of the entire race was getting out of the mile 68 aid station in the middle of the night.  I was shivering by the fire and could hardly get down solid foods, but somehow managed to get myself back on the trail and continue moving forward.  After the 2nd sunrise I was running strong once again and became more and more determined to finish.  Overall it was a terrific experience that I was able to share with many friends.

night1 night2 buckle Tom


Sunday, September 26, 2010

Big Schloss FA 50K

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Yesterday I completed the 8th running of the Big Schloss FA 50K, which takes place on the border of Virginia and West Virginia, in 8 hours and 46 minutes.  Click here for complete results.  The course offers spectacular views, beautiful trails with lots of ridge running, and of course the opportunity to scramble on Virginia’s famous rocks!  Steve and Amy Platt do a tremendous job putting together this free, event each year.  The post-run food and partying is top notch and I look forward to seeing everyone here again next year! 

Sunday, September 19, 2010

North Country Brewing & Moraine State Park

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This afternoon I drove over to Slippery Rock, PA and had lunch at the North Country Brewing Co.  This was my first visit here and I was very impressed.  The food was delicious and their beer was just as good.  I enjoyed their portabello “shroomben”, which is a grilled rye bread sandwich topped with grilled portabellas, sauerkraut, swiss cheese, and homemade Russian dressing.  As for beers, I had the Paleo IPA, Buck Snort Stout, and their cask ale selection. 

After lunch my brother, sister, and I then headed over to Moraine State Park for 2+ hours of hiking.  This was also my first visit to this park and I was very happy with what I saw – a large lake surrounded by 20+ miles of beautiful trails.  We hiked on the North Country Trail which is blue blazed just like the Buckeye Trail, has nice bridges, technical terrain, and some scenic views.  Can’t wait to come back to this park again for a run!

Click Here to view more photos from the day


Friday, September 17, 2010

15 in the CVNP


Headed over to the Cuyahoga Valley this evening and got in 15 miles on the Buckeye Trail and Valley Bridal Trail.  Great weather (sunny & low 60s), excellent company, and post-run nourishment at the Winking Lizard made for a very enjoyable evening!  Dogfish Head’s seasonal “Punkin Ale” is now on tap, which I enjoy having each year.  This is a full-bodied brown ale with smooth hints of pumpkin and brown sugar, topped off with brown sugar around the rim of the glass.  Yum!

Friday, September 10, 2010

Back to Back Weekends on the BT

Once again, I headed over to the Pine Lane trailhead this morning and ran another out and back 50K on the Buckeye Trail.  Kirk was thinking of joining me but he had a job interview to attend so I ended up running solo today with a stop at Heinen’s again for lunch.  Felt good during and after the run.  Much like last week the weather was cool and comfortable.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

31 miles on the BT

This morning my brother and I headed over to the Pine Lane trailhead in Peninsula and ran the Buckeye Trail 50K course in reverse.  At the turnaround point we stopped and had lunch at Heinen’s in Brecksville.  A couple other runners eventually joined us… Kirk Harrison met us at the Boston Store (mile 4) and Dan Bellinger met up with us just before Snowville Rd. as we were on our return trip.  The weather was absolutely perfect for running today – sunshine and 60s with a strong constant breeze – and my body felt good throughout the entire run.

Tuesday, August 31, 2010

3 in a row

Hopped on the treadmill late tonight and busted out 50 minutes at an 11% incline at 3.5 mph. Feeling strong and looking forward to bigger miles on the weekend.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Keep on climbin’

Just finished another treadhill workout - 11% grade, 3.5 speed for 30 min, then 10% grade, 4.0 speed for an hour = 5.5 miles uphill and 1200 calories burned!  Bring it on Oil Creek 100!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Incline Workout

Got in a treadmill workout this morning – walking for 45 minutes at a 10% incline, alternating between 3.5 and 4 speed.  Finished up with 2.5 miles.

Friday, August 27, 2010

Pine Lane to Columbia Rd

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This morning my sister and I headed over to Pine Lane for a run on the Buckeye Trail.  It was a perfect morning for a run.  Much different than the hot weather and humidity we’ve been having for most of this summer.  Temps started out somewhere around 50 degrees and it actually felt pretty chilly.  We ran past the Boston Store, Blue Hen Falls, and turned around somewhere past Columbia Rd. when my GPS said 8 miles.  Finished up with a total of 16 miles and felt really good.


Saturday, August 14, 2010

20.5 Mile Trail Run

This morning I met Greg Murray, John Buerhle, Rachel Nypaver, and Melissa Cairns at the Boston Store.  The plan was to get in a long run and use our cars at the Boston Store as an aid stop.  I ran an out & back to Pine Lane, then did a Brandywine loop, then finished up with an out & back to Snowville Rd. for a total of 20.5 miles.  Felt pretty good despite the high humidity.  Good times!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Walk On

Met up with Bob Combs again tonight for 5 miles of power walking. Still very hot and humid but at least we're getting in time on our feet! Looking forward to bigger miles this weekend.

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Happy Days to Pine Hollow

Tonight I met up with one of my coaching clients and we got in 6 miles from Happy Days to Pine Hollow. Still very hot and humid. Looking forward to a break in the weather next week.

Monday, August 9, 2010

Ledges Run

This evening I met up with my brother and sister at Happy Days for a 4 mile trail run around the ledges. Dan Bellinger also showed up. It was extremely humid with temps close to 90, but we ended up running a pretty quick pace and got in a good workout. I could tell by my shirt, which was completely soaked at the end of our run.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

4 More

After work Bob Combs and I got in 4 miles through the neighborhood streets of Warren. It's tough to do much quality running when the humidity is 90% but power walking will definitely help us prepare for our upcoming ultras. Thankfully the heat is supposed to take a break this weekend.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Imperial and back

This evening my brother, sister, and I ran an out and back route to the old Imperial Motel in downtown Warren and threw in a little extra for a total of 5.5 miles.

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

3 In A Row

Tonight was the 3rd night in a row that Bob Combs and I got in 4-5 miles through the streets of Warren.

Monday, July 19, 2010

Hot and Humid 18.5

This morning I met Dan Bellinger at Happy Days and we ran through the ledges, over to Kendall Lake, and continued on to the Wetmore Trail and Salt Run, before heading back to our cars with a total of 10.5 miles.  It was incredibly humid today and my shirt was soaked throughout the entire run.  Somehow though, I mustered up enough motivation to meet up with my brother later in the day and get in a 2nd run (an 8 mile out-and-back from Pine Lane to the Boston Store).  This gave me 18.5 miles for the day and a great start to the week!

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Happy Days to Kendall Hills

7-10-10 Group Run with Dave

This morning I met up with my brother, sister and her boyfriend Dave at Happy Days for a trail run over to Kendall Hills and back.  This was Dave’s first visit to the Cuyahoga Valley National Park and he really enjoyed it.  Despite the humidity, we had a great run and finished up with 6 miles.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Pine Lane to Boston Store


After seeing Dan Bellinger’s reply on Facebook this evening, I decided to meet up with him at the Pine Lane parking lot for a run to the Boston Store and back (8 miles).  I showed up about 15-20 minutes late though due to traffic so when I arrived I knew that Dan was already out on the trail.  As a result, I decided to try and push the pace in an attempt to minimize the distance between us.  I actually got pretty close to the Boston Store before I saw Dan running towards me.  I made it to the Boston Store in 40 minutes and ended up doing the return trip in about 50 minutes.  I was really happy with the way I felt tonight and attributed a lot of it to the decreased humidity.  After all the recent heat we’ve been having lately, tonight’s weather was absolutely perfect!

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Saturday, June 26, 2010

Frazee House to Bedford

This morning I met Bob Drake, Greg Murray, and my brother at the Frazee House parking lot and we ran the Buckeye Trail up to Viaduct Park in Bedford and back for a total of 16 miles. The humidity really tired me out on the second half of the run, but overall it was a great time and we had a lot of fun crossing through the large tunnel at Viaduct Park.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Hot & Humid 5

This evening I met my brother at Happy Days and we got in an easy 5 miles to the Pine Grove Trail and back. The temperature got up to around 85 today and the air felt extremely thick. I’ll be glad when some thunderstorms finally move through our area to break up the humidity. As for my running, I’m looking to start increasing my mileage again and getting in more long runs in prep for my fall goals.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Easy 5

This evening my brother and I met at Happy Days and got in an easy 5 miles.  The humidity was still very high and my shirt was completely soaked when we got back to our cars.  Always glad to be outside, enjoying the trails though!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

21 Miler & Phish Concert

This morning I met Mike Keller in Cuyahoga Falls near the finish line of the Burning River 100 Miler. We left his car there and then drove mine over to our starting location at the Everett Rd. Covered Bridge. Our plan, since I’ll be pacing Mike at Burning River this year, was to run the last 21 miles of the course into Falls Square. It turned out to be perfect BR training, with temps in the mid 80’s and very high humidity. We stuck to a 15 min/mile pace just about the entire way and had a lot of fun throughout the entire run.

Following our run I headed over to the Blossom Music Center for the Phish concert with two of my other running buddies, Greg Murray and Trevor Shilling. Click here to check out some photos before and during the show. You can also click here to listen to and/or download the entire concert for free!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Moose B-Day Run

This evening I met Joe Novicky (aka “Moose”) and my brother at Happy Days.  We ran towards Kendall Lake, did a loop on the Salt Run Trail, and finished up with 8.5 miles.  Afterwards we headed over to the Winking Lizard where I bought Moose a tall birthday ale.  (he turns 50 tomorrow)

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Pine Lane to Boston Store

Had a great 8 mile trail run with Shaun Pope, Bob Clark, and my brother tonight.  I was really happy with how I felt and the effort that I put forth. We ran from Pine Lane to the Boston Store in 40 minutes and finished back at our cars in just over 80 minutes.

Saturday, May 29, 2010

No Frills, Just Hills FA

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Today marked the 3rd installment of the annual No Frills, Just Hills FA that I help organize each year.  And to keep with tradition, it was once again hot and sunny for the 3rd year in a row.  Still recovering from my MMT 100 finish a couple weeks ago, I decided not to push it too hard today but ended up doing 7 loops for a total of 14 miles.  A new course record was set today by Bob Pokorny with a total of 17 loops (34 miles).  Also, a new attendance record was set, as this free N.E. Ohio Trail Club event continues to gain popularity each year. 

For complete results and photos - Click Here

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I Got My Buckle!


This past weekend I completed the 2010 Massanutten 100 Miler for the first time in a time of 32 hours, 53 minutes, and 13 seconds and placed 81st out of 170 starters.  This race is considered the toughest 100 miler in the East and features over 18,000 ft. of elevation gain.  Right now I’m still trying to catch up on my rest but I promise to have a race report posted here soon.

MMT Finish

Friday, May 7, 2010

Bald Eagles in Brecksville!

Station Road Bridge

This afternoon my sister came up to my place and we drove over to the Station Rd. bridge in Brecksville for a short 5 mile trail run and to check out the bald eagle nest that everyone has been talking about lately.  From the Station Rd. bridge parking lot you have to hop on the Towpath and then head north for approx. a 1/2 mile.  The viewing area is indicated by a couple signs and the large nest can be seen to the left in the distance. 

When we first arrived, one of the two adult eagles was sitting right on a branch above the nest.  After awhile a group of birdwatchers came along and we were lucky enough to view the eagles and take photos with my camera through this lady’s viewing scope.  Right now there are at least 2 adult eagles and 2 eaglets in this nest.  This was my first time seeing a bald eagle in the wild and it was a neat experience.  They are very powerful looking.

Eagle on Branch    Eagle and Eaglets

Click Here to view the rest of the photos

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Tree Farm Trail

I headed over to the Lock 29 trailhead this evening and met my brother and about 30 other people that showed up for tonight’s Crooked River Trail Runners group run.  We did a loop around the Tree Farm Trail and then headed back for 5 miles.  Afterwards I enjoyed a Sierra Nevada Bigfoot and Torpedo ale!

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Overlook Storm Photos

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This evening my brother and I drove over to the Overlook in the CVNP and were able to witness a wide variety of weather conditions.  The Overlook faces west but the approaching storm was moving northeast and we just happened to be right on the edge of the storm, enabling us to see both sunny and stormy skies without ever feeling a drop of rain.


Sunday, May 2, 2010

Portage Lakes Run

This afternoon my brother and I headed over to Portage Lakes State Park for a short 4 mile run on the Shoreline Trail. This was my first visit to the park, which is pretty nice but has a limited amount of trails to run on. I'm always interested in visiting new places though...

Friday, April 30, 2010

Chippewa Creek Run

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This morning I met Bill Wagner at the Station Road bridge and we did a run through Chippewa Creek up to Rt. 82 in Brecksville and back.  I planned this run in preparation for the rocks that are to come at the MMT 100 in a couple weeks.  We had a great time today and the weather was phenomenal.  It felt like a summer day with highs near 80 but with a nice breeze.  Perfect for going in and out of the cold water…

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Click Here to view all of the photos from today

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Covered Bridge Hill Work


This evening my brother and I met Bill Wagner and Tara Schweitzer at the Everett Road Covered Bridge in the CVNP and did a couple hours of hill work on each side of the bridge.  It was really nice out tonight.  Dry air and temperatures in the mid 60s.

Monday, April 26, 2010

I’m in!!

mmt A section of the MMT 100 Trail

Well, after starting out at #48 on the waitlist and slowly making my way up as people dropped out, I finally became an official entrant of the 2010 Massanutten Mountain Trails 100 Miler today!  This is considered by many as the toughest 100 miler in the East and notably so, with many large rocks/boulders and over 18,000 ft. of elevation gain on the course.  Last year this race was my first attempt at the 100 mile distance and I ended up timing out at mile 65 after dealing with temperatures in the mid 80’s, a severe storm with hail & lightening, and an all night cold rain.  Since then I was able to complete my first 100 miler though at the 2009 Burning River 100 and have been training each month with my sights still set on this year’s MMT 100.  Here’s a picture of my “visitor award” from last year’s MMT that I’ve kept above my computer all year long to remind me of my ultimate goal.  In a couple weeks I hope to replace this rock with a nice pewter belt buckle finishing award!