Register Today for the Run for Jess

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Registration is now open for the 5th Annual Run for Jess which will be held on Saturday, September 1st in East Bridgewater, Massachusetts. I have run this race a number of times since it has started and can assure you that this is one 5K race you will not want to miss!

All proceeds from the Run for Jess 5K benefit the Jessica C. Thurston Memorial Foundation. Jess was diagnosed with breast cancer in 2011 at the age of 27. After a very courageous battle with the disease Jess lost her life in August of 2013 at the age of 29. Throughout her illness she displayed so much strength and resilience; living her life with hope and a positive attitude.

Jess’s family and friends put on this amazing race that takes runners through the streets of East Bridgewater and the Foundation helps support breast cancer research in Jess’s memory.

The run is a good course on residential roads and there is a water stop half-way through the race. You get a couple of gradual hills mixed in for good measure which helps make the burgers and hot dogs served after the race taste all that much better! The race has a remarkable amount of raffle prizes available so be sure to bring some cash and take a chance on winning some great things to take home with you!

The race is a perfect family event complete with the kids race and the cookout. The race starts and finishes just outside the grounds of the Commercial Club in East Bridgewater so there is plenty of room to kick a soccer ball, run around, throw a football, etc.

To register for the Run for Jess, please click here. You will also want to be sure to follow the race on Facebook by clicking here and give a “Like” to the Foundation’s page here.

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Race Recap: Finish at the Fifty

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Every year it seems as though the Finish at the Fifty is held on the hottest day of the summer and this year was no exception. Though in the past I have opted to run the 5K at 6PM followed by the 10K at 7PM, I am glad this year I chose to only run the 5K course as the heat was downright ridiculous this past week here in New England.

The Finish at the Fifty is held on the hallowed grounds the New England Patriots call home. There is always a significant size crowd for this race given the allure of finishing at the fifty yard line inside Gillette Stadium and this year’s heat didn’t seem to thin the crowd out much. This isn’t a race you are going to PR at; rather, the race is an experience run and one that is quite fun to enjoy.

My daughter, one of her friends and Mrs. Running Griffin also ran this year’s race and deserve a ton of credit for tackling the run with such oppressive temperatures present even at a 6PM start.

The first mile of the race takes runners through the parking lots around Gillette Stadium and the heat coming off the pavement is quite noticeable. There is a water stop just around the 1 mile mark and then again around the 1.5 mile mark before runners head into the stadium. Once runners make their way through the parking lot, the race then takes an uphill turn as runners run the ramps from the ground entrance of the stadium all the way to the top of the stadium. Once the ramps have been tackled up, a quick loop around the upper bowl of Gillette then takes runners down another set of ramps to head back down toward ground level. These downhill ramps can be a nice challenge, as well, given the gravity pulling on your knees while running them. After heading down a set of the ramps, a half loop around the lower bowl of the stadium then takes runners outside quickly before heading into a tunnel to run out onto the field and be greeted by throngs of fans cheering you into the finish line.

As runners are heading into the finish line at the fifty yard line, runners are shown on the Jumbotron and the Patriots cheerleaders and mascot welcome you into the finish line. One disappointment this year is that there was no New England Patriot player available at the finish line as in the past players like Nate Solder or Jerrod Mayo were there cheering you in and available for photos.

After the race, we hung around the parking lot of Gillette Stadium and tailgated with friends and enjoyed a great fireworks celebration once it was dark out.

Even with the heat and the sea of runners and walkers present, I ran a nice race and felt strong heading both up and down the ramps and finished with an overall time of 26:11, good for 8:26/miles.

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Accelerated Performance Rehabilitation

17103778_1335363406510011_7500762606011180655_nThe Running Griffin would like to welcome Accelerated Performance Rehabilitation as the newest sponsor of our website!

Located in Westwood, Massachusetts, Accelerated Performance Rehabilitation provides  a unique patient/client centered approach to physical therapy and their premier physical therapists work with sports performance coaches to develop individual treatment plans that rehabilitate while also enhancing your sports performance. This combination of sports medicine and sports performance training benefits everyone from the elite athlete to the postoperative patient working to resume their normal lifestyle.

At APR, you will feel valued and respected from the initial phone conversation. Their priority is to provide exceptional care to accelerate your recovery and performance. As a runner, APR will spend the time necessary to get you feeling better and in top performance to ensure your body is in top running form!

APR’s team of highly skilled manual therapists believe in a hands on approach to tissue preparation. Muscle, fascia, and involved soft tissue should be soft and pliable, not only to promote healing but to allow full activation and function before adding stress to these tissues through proper strength and performance training. When these restrictions are addressed, combined with the correct exercise prescription, accelerated healing and performance begins.

I had the pleasure to meet the APR team at the Pack the Pantry 5K and they provided some great post-race stretching and techniques to bring home and help maximize post-race recovery. In the short ten minutes we spent together, I was impressed with the attention and unique feedback they provided to me focused on my own personal feedback as to what areas tended to be problem areas.

For more information about Accelerated Performance Rehabilitation, please be sure to check out their website by clicking here. You can also “Like” them on Facebook here. If you are in the greater Westwood area, please be sure to give them a look today if you need quality physical therapy, massage therapy or group training techniques.

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2018 MitoAction Energy Walk & 5K Run

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Registration is now open for the 2018 MitoAction Energy Walk & 5K Run which is being held on Sunday, September 16th in the South Boston neighborhood of Boston, Massachusetts. The race will kick off at the DCR’s Mother’s Rest on Carson Beach in Southie and this course hugging Boston Harbor is one you won’t want to miss!

Presented by Stealth BioTherapeutics, the 2018 MitoAction Energy Walk & 5K Run raises awareness of mitochondrial disease and helps raise funds for MitoAction, a leading patient advocacy organization within the mitochondrial disease community. Mitochondrial disease is an inherited chronic illness that can be present at birth or develop later in life. It causes debilitating physical, developmental, and cognitive disabilities with symptoms including poor growth; loss of muscle coordination; muscle weakness and pain; seizures; vision and/or hearing loss; gastrointestinal issues; learning disabilities; and organ failure.  It is estimated that 1 in 4,000 people has Mito.

With a goal of raising $150,000 for MitoAction at this year’s race, runners will tackle a chipped time 3.1 mile course along the water and the race route is a perfect course for runners of all levels. The course is a nice, flat stretch of road that makes for a great opportunity to run a strong race and support an amazing cause.

To register for the 2018 MitoAction Energy Walk & 5K Run please click here. Be sure to also give the race a “Like” on Facebook by clicking here.

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Race Recap: Bill Dunn, Jr. Memorial Road Race

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Saturday it was up to the Hough’s Neck section of Quincy, Massachusetts for the Bill Dunn, Jr. Memorial Road Race. Having never been to the Hough’s Neck section of Quincy, didn’t quite know what to expect from the race however with race time temperatures hovering around 90 degrees all runners knew that the five miles ahead were sure to be challenging.

Thankfully the race kicked off at 9AM as the temperatures only raised higher as the day grew on. At the starting line, most runners noted that it would not be a PR kind of race and instead would be one aimed at finishing safely. Runners who have also tackled the course hinted at the fact that the course would have a good amount of hills mixed into the race.

As I made my way onto the roads, the course took a really nice route throughout the Hough’s Neck section of Quincy. There were some amazing views of the ocean, some great spots that showed the Boston skyline in the distance, beachfront homes worthy of a glance as you ran by and a nice outpouring of neighborhood support along the entire 5 miles of the race. Those neighbors packed the course with hoses, sprinklers and water stops all along the route which was perfect given the hot conditions and I definitely took more water than normal and hit as many sprinklers and hoses as I possibly could. Even the smallest splash of water was helpful to cut the heat and hydration was certainly key.

Those runners who warned about the hills at the starting line were spot on as the race had some nice hills mixed throughout the entire route. The most significant hill was around the 3.5 mile mark where runners tackled a hill that basically went straight up for about a quarter mile. At the top of the hill, runners were greeted with a view of the ocean and a quick downhill toward the Nut Island Park. The final mile also included a couple good uphills, though much smaller, added in for good measure including three fast up and down hill sprints heading into the finish line.

As the race was the June Grand Prix for the Thirsty Irish Runners there was a nice contingent of green shirts along the course that helped push me along with a friendly hello and encouraging push at the right times. On a hot and hilly course, nothing better than some friends helping you along.

I finished the Bill Dunn, Jr. Memorial Road Race with a time of 44:04, good for a pace of 8:49/miles. Certainly not my best pace lately but given the conditions I was not expecting top performance and was happy to finish the race with a respectable time. The runner side of my brain (and as a runner you know what I mean) sort of had a love/hate relationship with the race and the heat and hills sort of added to the charm of the race. Would definitely look to run this race again at some point!

Bill Dunn Jr. lost his life while boating with friends on July 1, 2006. A proud member of Houghs Neck, he was truly loved by his family and friends and anyone who came in contact with him. His spirit for life and love of adventure is missed by all and this race helps keep his memory alive. A 1996 graduate of Quincy High School, Bill went on to join the Plumbers Union, Local 12. A standout for both the Houghs Neck Manets and Quincy High Football, Bill was inducted into the QHS/NQHS Football Hall of Fame in 2003.

All proceeds from the road race benefit the Bill Dunn Jr. Memorial Scholarship. The scholarship fund is used to enrich those who are in need. Some past recipients of the scholarship include Broad Meadows Middle School, Quincy High Football Players, Quincy High Students, The Houghs Neck Manets, Holy Trinity Parish, Children’s Hospital and Atherton Hough Teachers.

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Join me at Sonia’s Run 5K

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Registration is now open for Sonia’s Run 5K which will be held on September 22nd in West Roxbury, Massachusetts. I hope you consider joining me at this race and be sure to register today!

Since 1997, Theophany School has offered excellence in early childhood education for the Greater Boston area, providing challenging academics through a creative, family focused approach. With small class sizes, engaging curriculum, and a loving Christian environment, Theophany School strives to cultivate the minds and hearts of students to encourage a love of learning, service, and respect for the other. Sonia Daly Belcher, one of the main founders of the school, unexpectedly passed away in 2008 at age 32 from an unknown heart condition and this race is held in her memory.

Sonia’s Run is a USATF sanctioned 5K race. The course begins and ends at Sonia’s home parish church, St. George Orthodox Church of West Roxbury. This family-friendly day includes a kids’ fun run, bouncy house, face-painting, clown show, food, as well as medals and cash prizes for top three male and female finishers overall. Parking is available in the church lot as well as nearby streets.

Awards will be awarded by age category and performance T-shirts are guaranteed for the first 100 registered entrants. There is water on race course and complimentary post-race food.

To register for Sonia’s Run 5K, please click here to register today. Please be sure to also “Like” the race on Facebook here. I look forward to running with you in West Roxbury on September 22nd!

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Race Recap: Edgewood 5K

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Though usually when I am at Edgewood Pool & Tennis Club I am on the tennis courts, yesterday morning Edgewood played host to the 2nd Annual Edgewood 5K so it was time to lace up the running sneakers and leave the grounds of Edgewood for the streets of Raynham, Massachusetts and tackle the 5K course around the club.

This year, proceeds from the run were supporting a local family impacted by the devastating effects of cancer so it was nice to see the race more than double in size year-over-year as the club sought to raise a nice amount of money to donate.

The course for the Edgewood 5K starts and finishes in the parking lot of the pool and tennis club and takes runners out onto the roads. The first mile has a slow, gradual incline to it before runners make their way into a small neighborhood off the main road. Here, a very sharp incline is present but thankfully a water stop greeted runners at the top of the hill before runners made their way back out onto the main roads. A couple of left turns, the course is easy to follow and is a really nice residential run through Raynham.

Three additions to the race this year (water stop, miles marked in chalk on the road and the addition of the small neighborhood stretch to replace needing to do a lap through the parking lot at the end) all were really nice additions to the run and worked quite well! A nice perk of the race is that all runners were eligible to bring their families back to Edgewood Pool & Tennis Club for the remainder of the day to enjoy the amenities of the location.

The Edgewood 5K has certainly grown nicely over the past year and continued progress will help the race entrants continue to climb. I finished this year’s Edgewood 5K in sixth place overall with a time of 23:18, good for 7:30/miles. A truly nice, local run and one I look forward to again next year!

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