Wrentham Lions New Year’s Classic 5K

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It’s official. The weather in New England this winter is making absolutely no sense right now. On New Year’s Day, unseasonably warm temperatures in the mid to upper 50’s made for a perfect running day at the Wrentham Lions New Year’s Classic 5K and perhaps it was the nice conditions that helped propel me to a third place finish in my age group!

The New Year’s Classic 5K starts and finishes at the iconic Eagle Brook Saloon and the race had grown this year with just over 105 runners toeing the starting line; an increase from the 65 or so runners the year prior. The Eagle Book Saloon is this sort of hole-in-the-wall sort of pub with a funky vibe to it, some really nice pub fare and a great lineup of cold beers to choose from! Definitely a unique spot and a perfect location to host a road race!

At the start of the race, the Race Director gave a few brief announcements and noted that the course would be open to traffic and that there were a few hills mixed into the 5K course for good measure. A few runners, clearly past participants, chuckled at the hills comment which in my mind prepared me to expect some hills. And hills there were.

The first mile of the race was a nice uphill climb the entire way. Runners were granted a bit of a reprieve about halfway into the run where a downhill stretch allowed runners to let their legs loose a bit. Right around the two mile mark there were a couple more residential rollers mixed into the course and then runners made their way left back onto another slight decline. Heading back into the final left, there was about .3 miles left to go in the race heading back to the Eagle Brook Saloon that continued to climb for what seemed much longer than .3 miles. Even picking targets to run to (“Run to the cruiser, run to the fire hydrant, run to the sign) was a challenge and the thighs could really feel the climb, even if it was somewhat gradual.

I knew I was running a pretty decent race heading toward the finish line particularly given the amount of hills mixed in and a tough headwind on one part of the course. Kicked the legs into the finish line and finished the race with a time of 24:42, good for 7:57/miles and third overall in my age group. For a New Year’s Day run, I’ll gladly take those results and would highly recommend this race next year to add to your running calendar.

All proceeds from the race went to benefit the Wrentham Lions Club and the charitable endeavors they support. Special kudos go out to the Norfolk Police Department who did a remarkable job patrolling the course and who the Race Director noted volunteered their time to patrol the course in support of the charitable efforts.

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Protect Your Skin with Raw Elements

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As someone who has already had two basal cell growths removed from my face, the importance of wearing sunscreen is something that runners sometimes don’t take serious enough. Now, thanks to Raw Elements runners have a new, natural suncare solution to use and ensure sun safety.

At Raw Elements their commitment is to provide the safest, most effective sunscreen in the world. Their approach incorporates only all natural, organic, chemical free ingredients, which are safe to us and our ecosystems. Utilizing their own Organic Eco-Shield Performance Technology,  Raw Elements is proud to offer the most effective, balanced UVA & UVB sunscreen available. The Raw Elements formulas are gentle and beneficial, yet provide the long lasting performance under all conditions.

Raw Elements has a variety of different products available ranging from sunscreen for face and body to lip rescue products that are perfect for the harsh winter month runs. One of the best things about the Raw Elements offerings is that they are safe for both adults and kids and apply in a way that is both easy to use and effective in terms of coverage.

The Raw Elements products are available for purchase online by clicking here and readers of The Running Griffin can use the code GRIFFIN at checkout for a discount.  There are some great sales available on the Raw Elements website so be sure to check out their offerings today!

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Registration Open for Indoor Triathalon

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For those runners looking to mix it up a bit this winter, you might want to check out the indoor triathalon being put on by Life Time. Life Time Tri is proud to expand to 100 indoor triathlon locations in late January 2019 where each location’s event is limited to just 100 participants so don’t delay and register today!

The indoor triathlon is based on time rather than distance — meaning you receive points for going further in a specific period of time, not going faster over a fixed distance. The total event lasts for 75 minutes, consisting of:

  • Swim: 10 minutes in the pool
  • Transition 1: 10-minutes (move from the pool to cycle studio)
  • Bike: 30 minutes on an indoor bike
  • Transition 2: 5-minutes  (move from the cycle studio to treadmills)
  • Run: 20 minutes on a treadmill

Participants are graded on a curve. The furthest distance in each category gets the most points (actual number is based on total participants) and the shortest receives one point. Your “score” for the discipline is based on the points you achieve. All three disciplines count equally toward your final score. Therefore, your rank and score will not be determined until all participants have completed the event.

Transition times are fixed between events and do not count toward participants’ scores.

Register for just $35 and receive a host of gifts below and become a triathlete in just 60 minutes!  All 2019 participants will receive:

  • 16 oz Double Wall Stainless Steel Thermal Tumbler (pictured) 
  • Swim Cap
  • Race bib
  • Online results
  • $10 coupon for 2019 Life Time Tri (outdoor) events
  • Special offers for Life Time Endurance training and club membership

 

To register for the Life Time Tri event near you, please click here. 

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Race Recap: Walter’s Run

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An annual favorite, Walter’s Run took place last Sunday in West Roxbury, Massachusetts and the day made for a nice winter run through the streets of Boston. Walter’s Run is a 5K and served as the final race of the Thirsty Irish Runners Grand Prix series so a healthy throng of fellow TIRs joined me at the starting line and made our way out onto the race course.

There are some nice hills mixed into the 3.1 mile route that the race takes place on including the sizable incline around the 2 mile mark that seemed to go smoother this year than it did in the past. The roads are fully closed down for the race as runners make their way through a section of Boston and there are some local residents cheering runners along in the cold winter air. This year the race was not nearly as cold as it has been in the past but there was still a nice chill in the air that runners had to contend with but overall for a December race the conditions were pretty nice.

Once runners get through the starting line and make their way into the first right hand turn up a hill the course begins to separate a bit allowing runners to spread apart and begin to run their pace. In the second and third mile I was actually picking up some speed each mile and throughout the race ran a rather solid race.

I finished Walter’s Run with an overall time of 24:56, good for 8:05/miles.

After the run, the Thirsty Irish Runners made our way to Victory Grille in Dedham to celebrate the end of the Grand Prix series and host our annual meeting announcing the races for the 2019 Grand Prix series.

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Winter Lights 5K

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On Friday night we made our way to Plymouth, Massachusetts for the Winter Lights 5K. This has been a race we have wanted to do for a number of years but 6:30 on a Friday night can sometimes prove to be a challenge between work, kids activities and other holiday events. But this year, an open night on the calendar coupled with an invite from our friends Karl and Katherine was all we needed to tie up the sneakers and partake in some wintertime running fun!

The Winter Lights 5K takes place right in the middle of America’s hometown and is a relatively familiar course for those who have run a race in Plymouth in the past. The race starts on Court Street and makes its way uphill in the half mile before making a right hand turn down toward Nelson Park, which hugs the Atlantic Ocean. For a nice stretch of about a mile you run right along the coast on Main Street and there were plenty of people out for a night out in Plymouth cheering you along the way. Runners lit up with Christmas lights, headlamps and flashlights passed by Plymouth Rock and then into the Swenson Field area of downtown before turning back up Court Street for a relatively uphill finish.

The road race was held in conjunction with the Plymouth Christmas tree lighting so a brief parade featuring Santa , a snowman and a marching band went by just prior to the race kicking off and a healthy amount of fans enjoying the holiday cheer in downtown Plymouth that evening lined the finish line and cheered runners in. Several of the local restaurants, pubs and shops were open and nicely filled post-run. We stopped into Blue Blinds Bakery to warm up post run and were greeted with free pastries, cookies and hot coffee. After the run, eight of us made our way to Cafe Strega to warm up some more and enjoy a drink and a great post-run meal.

The Winter Lights 5K was a really nice way to help ring in the holiday season and running at night is always a nice change of pace. The blinking lights, the holiday vibes and the chilly temps all helped to get you into the holiday mood! I finished the Winter Lights 5K with a time of 26:03, good for 8:23/miles.

Back at it this morning for another race in West Roxbury with Walter’s Run. Hope to see some of you there!

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Join Me at the 2019 New Year’s Classic

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On New Year’s Day, shake off the cob webs from ringing in the New Year at the 2019 New Year’s Classic in Norfolk, Massachusetts.

The Wrentham Lions Club hosts the annual New Year’s Classic 5K and this year will be the 19th running of the race. All proceeds from the race benefits the Wrentham Lions Club cwhich along with contributing to many local charities also has a focus on helping the visually impaired after being challenged by Helen Keller to become the “Knights of the Blind.”

The Eagle Brook Saloon has been the host of the race for last several years and the Wrentham Lions Club is just one of many local charities supported by the Eagle Brook.

The race itself is a fun, low-key 5K that includes a hearty and delicious breakfast from The Eagle Brook Saloon after the race and a pair of running gloves or a buff. Runners can register online by clicking here and will join Mrs. Running Griffin and me at the starting line to tackle the 2019 year with a road race hours after the ball has dropped!

Look forward to having many of The Running Griffin readers join me in Norfolk on New Year’s Day for the New Year’s Classic 5K. Let’s start off the new year on the right foot and help support the great work done by the Wrentham Lions Club!

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Commitment Day 5K

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Looking for a great way to kick off 2019? Look no further than the Commitment Day 5K in Burlington, Massachusetts! After all, there is no better way to ring in the New Year than tackling a 5K race on the first day of the year!

Commitment Day is hosted by Life Time Athletic and aims to drive individuals toward committing to a healthier, happier life. Whether it’s yoga, cycle, studio, group training or a 5K, Life Time Athletic seeks to make your passion a priority — on New Year’s Day and all year long. The race is held at 38 Life Time Athletic locations across the country and locally in the Greater Boston area the Burlington, Massachusetts location will be hosting the Commitment Day 5K perfect for those runners in the region looking to start off the New Year on the right foot!

The Commitment Day 5K is being held on New Year’s Day 5K and runners will enjoy a great run, a finisher shirt, finisher medal and post-race brunch inside of the Life Time Athletic gym!

To register for the Commitment Day 5K in Burlington, Massachusetts please click here to register online. If you register today and use the code ICOMMIT you will receive 30% off your registration fee so don’t delay and register today! This code is only good until the end of the day on Monday, November 26th so head over to the site and register today!

If you are in the Burlington, Massachusetts area and are interested in gaining more information about the Life Time Athletic running group, please click here to join their Facebook group, as well.

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