It’s a beautiful day here in Westchester. There was a threat of rain in the forecast, but after a short period when it looked like it just might rain — it didn’t — it’s cleared up again. Having mopped down the sun porch and, with my wife, taken down the cushions for the big chairs and the table and chair, I am out on the porch for the first time this year. I expect I’ll be out here pretty much until October. I spent most of my post-operative period lying on the sofa at the end of last summer.

My wife is up visiting a friend in Columbia County, where we had a house when we lived in the City long ago, so I’m out with the dogs, Minnie and Phinnie, enjoying the nice air. And because I recently got a stronger contact lens prescription — I am nearly blind without — I now must wear reading glasses at the computer. So that’s what I’m doing.

Today’s run was tough. My plan was to head up to Scarsdale Station along the BRP Path. It’s 12.5 total. I felt OK going out, trying to keep things under control, listening to the Ryan Hall and Josh Cox interview from “The Competitors” as well as some music. But I suspected it would be an adventure coming home, and I was right. It was a little warm since I went out later than I ordinarily would, given I stayed until after my wife headed out. A relaxed if steady pace heading out. Things got tough from there, but I’m pleased to say that somehow I made it home. While the last miles were the faster, they were the toughest. No water on the run, and that may have been a factor.

So home and a few glasses of Accelerade and then a not-super-cold “ice” bath. I was pretty spent. Tomorrow probably heading up for a run on the Old Croton Acqueduct in Hastings-on-Hudson. 30 minutes up and you pass Lyndhurst, at which point the trail ends at it hits Route 9. Turnaround and that should be fine.

As I suggested after Healthy Kidney, I’m now largely building a base for the fall. Although I’ll race regularly. Also, there were some post-race adjustments at Healthy Kidney. I dropped down two places, to 173rd. Then there was the guy who won the 50-54 AG, Richard Temerian. His initial time was sub-34, which led to a bit of questioning among members of Warren Street on FaceBook. More important, it was a blow to me. There is no way I can run sub-34 and this new guy, as I thought he was, was going to be dominating the category for a while (as teammate Paul Thompson does for the 40-44).

The Internet, of course, allows you to check out one’s race history, so huge improvements can be identified. As WSSACers investigated, it became apparent that Urban Athletics, for whom he ran, had given numbers out without regard to whose numbers they were. Paul pointed it out that one UA finisher had cheered him from the side of the road during the race.

By Tuesday, things were put back in their proper places. UA still beat out Warren Street for the Masters title, although not by nearly as much, as the 50-54 winner was still Richard Temerian, but his time was a manageable (to me) 35:52. I realize that age-group awards are incredibly arbitrary since they turn on who does or doesn’t show up at a race. But I race against certain guys I see at these big NYRR Club races, even if I am no longer able to race in the Open category. So I always look to see how I do in the category. After I turned 50, I had a streak in which I won an A-G award, but that streak ended as younger legs entered the category. Now, of course, I’m ever closer to the 55-59. It’s nice how using age-group awards can help with the motivation.

I just dropped an email to someone suggesting that the first step in this whole training process is to have a general understanding of the purpose of what we do. Hence my recognition from last week’s race that skimping on something — speedwork — adversely affects performance. I’ve tended to use Daniels’ Running Formula as giving a good overview, although Brad Hudson’s Run Faster.

That’s for later. Right now it’s getting a bit dark on this sun porch. And it’s cooling off. I’d best be finishing this off and heading inside.

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