Saturday, March 10, 2012

Few new towns on this year's calendar

It's March, and two of our dogs are about to take me on a four-mile run around our neighborhood. First, a few notes.

It's getting to be mid-March, and I'm surprised at how few races are scheduled in towns I haven't run. In prior years, by now I'd be sorting through a list of 15 or 20 communities for the coming season. This year -- just a handful. And that's out of six pages of listings on

So I really have entered a new phase of this quest. If I'm going to finish it by May 14, 2016 (see below), this is the year to start systematically setting up my "do-it-yourself" 5K courses. The goal: a minimum of 30 communities this year.

To do this, I need to make 15 trips, as my method will actually be to run a minimum 10K, only half in one town and half in another. To do this is quite easy: all you have to do is find where the border is marked between two towns (New Hampshire is pretty good at that), then measure off 2.5K (or 1.6 miles) in each direction.

So then, starting right at the border, you go into Town A a distance of 2.5K, then turn around and come back. That gives you a solid 5K in Town A. But then you cross the border and keep going into Town B, into which you run 2.5K, then turn around and head back. When you reach the border, hey presto -- another 5K done! And you're standing right next to your car.

Two advantages to this method: I can start any time I want, and no registration fees! So I can squeeze them in quite early, say, and still have most of the day free. (Plus I can take the dogs along.) And there being no races this weekend, and the weather being fairly nice, I might start early tomorrow with two towns, Brookline and Mason, and see how it goes.

Running in every state: Next up is New York State, which will happen while I'm roistering in Syracuse from Wednesday, March 14 through Monday, March 19. This will bring my total up to two out of 50. Well, you've got to start somewhere, and if the goal is to motivate me to workout while staying in a comfy hotel room, well, then it seems to be working, right?

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