It’s Saturday afternoon and we are having some strange weather here in southern Westchester. Radar showed a narrow band of rain. The problem is that the band, narrow as it is, is moving north-south and not east-west so what looked like brief rain has been continuous for quite a while.

This may alter tomorrow’s second annual Paine-to-Pain trail race, put on by Eric Turkewitz. It’s 13-or-so mile trail race along the Colonial Greenway trail. Maybe one mile is on roads, chiefly the opening stretch. After having about 50 runners last year, it is sold out at 200.

Unlike the dispute at the Rockies, this trail has brought runners and localities together. I was involved in some of the meetings, but it was Eric who headed the effort to combine numerous existing trails into a loop, and the localities involved and Westchester County itself did an excellent job of doing it, particularly some of the key connections between the trails. I rarely run on certain portions, although I frequent the ones closest to home — it’s about 1.25 miles from home although I sometimes drive to a parking lot at stables — and find them to be nirvana on earth.

So the rain may render the trails a bit wet, and there are spots that spots that don’t take particularly well to the rain, but very rarely are there spots that are rendered unpassable. The forecast is for clear skies tomorrow, so a good time should be had by all.

I’m not running it. Too far. Today, however, I was finally able to get to 10 miles. It was quite humid, far more than expected. It was a strange run. I struggled early on and had frequent moments of wishing to stop. But it was not one of those runs where you feel you are just grinding it out, never feeling comfortable. I felt fine, but I was just dead. But realizing that New York is only 13 months away, I kept moving. A hill at 2.75 often helps me change the tempo for the better, and that seems to have happened as I was able to continue north, turning at the Leewood tunnel at 4.75.

Decent-enough pace. Somehow when I got home I had enough left to add another half-mile to get to double digits. But was I dripping at the end.

I was bummed that I missed today’s Grete Gallop HM, which was a club race. Warren Street’s Masters easily won the day, and are in the lead going into the final two races. I’ve not scored this year, nor do I expect to. But I am pleased to be part of the team. Grete was a real boost for me in 2006 when I wanted to get a decent time going into NY, and I have fond memories of my then teammate Jerri Lynn cheering me on. I don’t remember if her husband Dave was there too (although they were both at the Empire State 5,000 in 2007).

Sadly, fall has arrived, and with it early darkness. After my accident, I’m not running outside at night, which means the treadmill. I used it for the first time this season last night. I got a Polar HRM band for about $0.05 a few months back and so I was able to use my treadmill’s HRM-capacity. I hoped it would show that the monitor showing my pace was wrong. It seems so much harder on the treadmill to run, say, 7:13 pace than it does outside that I figured the monitor must be wrong and that I’m really going much faster.

Alas the HRM suggests otherwise. 7:13 pace got me only up to 130. So I must accept that I don’t feel comfortable on the treadmill. JT’s a fan of them and does crazy mileage on hers. I’m going to have to bite the bullet and just get used to it. Last night, however, was not an auspicious start. At about 18 minutes my left knee hurt a bit so I stopped. I’ll be back.

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