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Attackpoint AR - performance and training tools for adventure athletes

Training Log Archive: PG

In the 7 days ending Oct 17, 2010:

activity # timemileskm+ft
  orienteering3 2:20:29 9.3(15:06) 14.97(9:23) 735
  mountain biking1 1:10:15 10.48(6:42) 16.87(4:10) 354
  trail running1 24:41 2.27(10:52) 3.65(6:45) 328
  Total5 3:55:25 22.05(10:41) 35.49(6:38) 1417
averages - weight:141.7lbs

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Sunday Oct 17, 2010 #


So a look at my mistakes today, and why they happened --

To the 3rd control -- the plan was to cross the trail, go along the first line of marshes, angle down to the second line, go to the end of that, and the control would be looking right at you. What happened:

1. Mistake -- Thought I was turning down at the start of the third marsh, but it was actually only the second. So the cliffs I was expecting to see weren't there.
2. Recovery -- In the expectation of seeing cliffs to my right, and not seeing them, I almost kept descending down towards the big marsh. Realized that was wrong. Stopped long enough to figure out I was just left of the elongated knoll.
3. Mistake -- Should have gotten back to the second line of marshes because it was such an easy way to take the control. And easy usually also means fast. But the running looked nice straight ahead.
4. Recovery (sort of) -- Mostly in control, though having to pay attention to keep track of the little knolls.
5. Mistake -- I think I misidentified a pice of rock as the last cliff on the route, when the last cliff was still a little farther. So I went a little more and expected the reentrant and the control to appear, but no sign of them. Looked a little right and left.
6. Recovery -- Went far enough right to see the end of the marsh, and as expected, the control was simple from there.

Doesn't look like much, but I'd guess I blew off at least a minute -- stopping to make sure I didn't go down the bigger slope, then much more intensive map reading (so slower running), then searching early, then a detour to the marsh end. Maybe more than a minute? Things add up.

Morale -- when you have to plan to nicely simplify a control, stick to it.

To the 8th control, the plan was to climb past the green marsh, go east and drop into the reentrant, and follow it down to the first knoll and then the second knoll NE of it. What happened --

Good as far as getting into the correct reentrant and heading down it. But then:

1. Mistake -- My mental image was that I would drop down the reentrant about 100 meters or a little more and there would be a big cliff on my left and a single knoll ahead of me. Down I went. Saw the cliff, saw a knoll, went out on the knoll. And couldn't make sense of things.
2. No recovery.
3. Mistake -- Thinking I was on the first knoll, even though it didn't feel right, I dropped off the NE side to see if my second knoll was there, just not obvious from above.
4. Nope
5. Recovery (pure luck) -- Saw a control between two knolls, didn't think it was mine because....
6. Mistake -- I still hadn't looked at the clue, and I was assuming that the feature was the cliff on the right side of the NE cliff.
7. Recovery -- Went to check the one between the knolls. Hmm, it's mine. :-) And off to #9. Really quite sad.

And how did the problem get started? Simple -- not a discriminating enough mental image of how the terrain lay, meaning, not realizing that the first knoll I was looking for was on a line straight down the line of the reentrant. So when I saw a little bump or two on the right shoulder of the reentrant, I assumed that was the knoll I was looking for, even though they didn't look right at all.

Morale -- when things don't look right they probably aren't. Stop and figure it out. This one cost me a couple of minutes.

11 AM

orienteering 59:36 intensity: (6 @1) + (14 @2) + (13:03 @3) + (45:54 @4) + (19 @5) 3.83 mi (15:34 / mi) +354ft 14:18 / mi
ahr:152 max:168 shoes: mudclaw 270

Day 2 at the US Champs. A little less skilled than yesterday, lost about a minute on #3 (couldn't get myself to go the last 40 meters) and a couple minutes on #8 (did see something on the map that would have helped, but mainly just didn't think clearly). Just squeaked in under an hour, 5th on the GreenX course, first again in M60.

A very pleasant surprise for the weekend. After getting totally dusted by all sorts of people at the Highlander, my expectations for this weekend were low. I figured making the top 3 in M60 would be possible, but I expected to get trounced by Bob and Jeff and who knows who else. But you never know how things will work out, you still have to find the controls, and I think I found the controls as well (or better) than anyone else on the course.

So that was a lot of fun and a big improvement from the Highlander. But I still have to do something to see if I can get a little running ability back, just on the odd chance that it hasn't permanently disappeared. Because it is so much fun to be finding the controls and also have a little bit of energy.

Way off in the future -- picked up a flier for the JK and the Irish Champs. last 10 days of April next spring. Very appealing, after tax season is over. Never been to either. So perhaps that is something to shoot for.

My course (GreenX, M60).

And my route.

Also scanned yesterday's map, so there's a much better image (see yesterday's entry).

Saturday Oct 16, 2010 #

11 AM

orienteering 57:32 intensity: (14 @2) + (23 @3) + (55:26 @4) + (1:29 @5) 3.73 mi (15:25 / mi) +377ft 14:05 / mi
ahr:160 max:170 shoes: mudclaw 270

Day 1 of the 2-day Classic Champs (the real national championships in my opinion, hope it still exists as long as I'm orienteering, certainly for financial reasons the federation would be foolish to dispense with it).

Fabulous terrain. Real nice course, good orienteering right to the very end. So glad I ran M60 instead of M65, but I wasn't going to be Swiss'ed again.

Good run/walk (a lot of work, but even the slightest uphills required walking). Clean almost all the way, just lost maybe a minute total on the last couple controls.

The map.

And here's my route.

Not the best route to #1, should just have gone straight but wanted to get into the map a bit. Then pretty good all except a little shaky to the last two. Surprised that times weren't a lot faster given how slowly I was moving.

Friday Oct 15, 2010 #


I note in a few places around AP that there is a lot of chatter about burrito consumption. Which all strikes me as a bit useless, since I'm not a big fan of burritos. I'd guess it's been a decade since I've had one, and I haven't felt deprived.

So imagine my surprise when I happened to see something similar to this a few days ago --

And the question is, how much better off would those folks be if funds spent on burritos had been put in CMG? Ian would certainly be a millionaire (and a lot healthier too?). And what other investment gems might be picked up by a careful monitoring of AP logs?

Wednesday Oct 13, 2010 #


Just a little scouting for the CSU Corn Maze Championships. It will be very cool. Now I think I'll run a course using the permanent controls to see how it feels when going faster.

Anyone interested in coming, it's next Wednesday, late afternoon, social activities to follow, please let me know, and also add your name to the list on the event page.

5 PM

orienteering (maze) 23:21 intensity: (7 @1) + (6:31 @2) + (15:36 @3) + (1:05 @4) + (2 @5) 1.74 mi (13:25 / mi) +3ft 13:24 / mi
ahr:135 max:154 weight:141.5lbs

Set a course in the maze, 26 controls (haven't figured out how far it is beeline), just to see what O' in the maze was like.

And it was fabulous.

All the good parts of orienteering, but no rocks, no thorns, no hills. So cool. Had more fun than I've had orienteering in quite a long time.

Click on the globe for my route.

So now I've got a sense for the place, it's time to come up with a course. One really nice thing is the map was totally sufficient. So I suspect that I will just have to add a north line and a scale (once I figure it out), just to satisfy the purists.

The only pisser is I think this is the 10th year for Mike's Maze (different artistic creations each year), and this is the first time I've thought to go orienteering there. Credit for the inspiration goes to an evening at Bub's Barbecue with the ladies.

Oh, it was so cool. And really good O' training.

And my run, not too bad, 2 or 3 mistakes plus went to the wrong control a couple of times before I realized it. Plus standing still several times. Total lost maybe 3-4 minutes.

Tuesday Oct 12, 2010 #

6 PM

mountain biking (night) 1:10:15 intensity: (23:35 @2) + (40:53 @3) + (5:47 @4) 10.48 mi (6:42 / mi) +354ft 6:30 / mi
ahr:128 max:156 weight:141.5lbs

On the Montague plain and Willis Hill after dark with Bob Perry from Bikes Unlimited plus 7 others. Interesting experience, felt like a long interval workout. There was a modest range of abilities, with me certainly not the fastest but fortunately not the slowest, so we'd go for a bit and then the fastest would wait to group up. So I'd go as fast as I could to try to keep up, and then stand for a couple of minutes. I suppose I could have just gone at a nice even and modest pace, with no stops, but that didn't really occur to me. :-)

For about the first 4 stops I tried to stop/start the 305, but that got to be too much trouble and I just let it run. I think there's a setting I can put it on so it only goes when you're moving.

Beautiful evening, low 50s, clear, waxing moon. A mix of old jeep roads and narrower stuff, a lot flat, some up and down at the north end.

Quite enjoyed it. Knew a couple of the other riders (clients of mine).

Had my light on the handlebars. Some did that, some had it mounted on their helmet, not sure which is best (well, I suppose best is two lights, one each way).

Monday Oct 11, 2010 #

5 PM

trail running 24:41 intensity: (1:50 @1) + (1:28 @2) + (17:44 @3) + (3:39 @4) 2.27 mi (10:52 / mi) +328ft 9:34 / mi
ahr:137 max:152 weight:142lbs shoes: saloman

Out the back way, I got up to the top of the first hill and had no desire to keep heading up, so I turned to go over by the town park and proceeded to have one of my best AOWN experiences in a long time.

My first thought was that it was a cat sitting in the middle of Park Road, but as I got closer I could see it was a barred owl. Stopped as soon as I realized that, I was maybe 15 yards from it. And it was just sitting there looking at me.

It was sitting a little awkwardly, so I thought maybe it had been hit by a car, though cars come by there rarely and slowly. So I started to circle it, getting no closer than about 10 yards (and something in me was wanting to see if the owl would rotate its head a full 360 if I kept going), but I noticed a couple of what looked like twigs sticking out from under the owl.

At some point as I was circling it, it got a little nervous and took off, but it barely got airborne before settling back down a couple of yards from where it started. But it got airborne enough for me to see that the twigs were the rear feet of a rabbit that the owl was hanging on to. Well, it was quite cool, except if you look at it from the rabbit's perspective, I suppose.

Took a last long look at the owl, noting all the field marks, then figured I'd leave him alone. Down the roads a way I looked at a patch of woods I'd never been in, thought why not, it turned out to be the nicest forest for orienteering anywhere in Massachusetts, too bad it's only about 5 or 10 acres and privately owned. Just gorgeous. So twice on this run I regretted that neither my 305 nor my ipod had a camera.

And then back to check out the owl scene. A couple cars had come by before I got there, now instead of the owl/rabbit in the road there was a kid, teenager, very nerdy looking, with binoculars. I stopped, he pointed out where the owl was up in a tree, and where the rabbit was, a couple of yards off the road. I assume the owl will be back to fetch it before long.

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