Routes and Photos



29 Aug
Crumpton, Md

12 Sept
Prince Frederick

12 Sept
Navy-Marine Stadium

13 Sept
Adamstown, MD

19 Sept
Women's Wellness 5k
Millersville, MD

20 Sept
KTS Memorial 5k
Kent Island

26 Sept
Glen Burnie Improvement Assoc 5k
Glen Burnie, MD

26 Sept
Lanyard, MD

26 Sept
Millersville , MD

27 Sept
Quiet Waters

3 Oct
Millerville, MD

3 Oct
Crofton, MD

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The Weight Gain-Inflammation Connection  
When we think about inflammation, we often think of it as helping us heal from an obvious injury (like a wound) or fighting harmful bacteria. This is good inflammation working in our favor to keep us healthy. But on the flip side, when the immune system is too active, it can make us sick.
We know that major chronic illnesses, such as heart disease and type 2 diabetes, are linked to weight gain, but did you ever wonder how those diseases and inflammation are all intertwined?
Understanding inflammation, especially "bad" inflammation, will help explain this link.


Inflammation is a process you can't actually see, so how do you know if it's "good" or "bad"?
Think about the last time you got a bruise. The blood and fluid that rushed in to create that purplish swollen area is the definition of inflammation. As you heal, inflammation subsides and eventually goes away. This is how "good" inflammation is supposed to happen.
But sometimes inflammation can get us into trouble. An example: an allergy where our immune system overreacts to relatively harmless foods (think: peanut butter, shellfish, eggs) or substances (think: pollen, dust, latex).
Poor habits like eating an unhealthy diet, not exercising enough and consuming too much sugar can contribute to a bad type of inflammation called "chronic" inflammation. These habits turn the immune system "on" and help it stay activated for a long period of time. Along with other factors, chronic inflammation can lead to chronic illness.


The way our immune system reacts to smoking and stress increases our risk for heart disease. How? Smoking and stress damage cells and activate your immune system, leading to a low level of chronic inflammation. Over time, chronic inflammation makes your arteries more likely to collect plaque, which stiffens and clogs them, and can lead to heart disease.
Chronic inflammation contributes to type 2 diabetes by worsening "insulin resistance," a condition where your body produces insulin but your cells don't respond to it very well so your blood sugar stays abnormally high. How does chronic inflammation do this? Simply put, fat cells are capable of creating chemical signals that lead to chronic inflammation. But they mainly do so when you habitually eat too many calories and sugar. These chemical signals also mess with the way that insulin works in our bodies, aggravating insulin resistance.


If fat cells can contribute to chronic inflammation, then it's reasonable to expect that weight gain, especially in the form of fat tissue, also contributes to chronic inflammation. As we gain weight, some fat cells expand beyond their capacity while trying to do their job storing our extra calories as fat. When this happens, they turn on and add to the inflammation already present in our bodies. At this point, these cells aren't just fat storage warehouses-they're like little inflammation factories, sending out signals to activate the immune system. Losing weight allows the fat cells to shrink back to a more normal size and turns off the signals that trigger chronic inflammation.
A study from the UK published in 2008 shows that chronic inflammation is linked to weight gain. Researchers followed people over nine years and monitored things like their weight gain and blood levels of C-reactive protein (CRP), a chemical that shows up when the immune system is activated.
They found something interesting: Weight increases were associated with more inflammation, and the relationship was linear. This means that as a person's weight increased, so did the level of CRP in their blood. This relationship between weight and inflammation suggests losing weight should help-and some studies prove this.
One study published in 2004 by Wake Forest University in North Carolina, involving more than 250 people, found that inflammation decreased among participants who went on a low-calorie diet to lose weight. Since losing weight helps decrease inflammation, it may also keep our chronic-illness risk at bay, although more studies are needed to prove this link.


Changing your diet and losing weight are two of the best ways to lower inflammation. Here are some tips:
  1. Eat antioxidants and polyphenols: Eating antioxidant- and polyphenol-rich foods can cut down on inflammation by reducing "free-radical damage." Free radicals are generated by the body when it's in a state of stress. If the immune system becomes overwhelmed by free radicals, cells are harmed and inflammation gets worse. Antioxidants and polyphenols are great for fighting that process. To get them, try drinking green tea and eating a rainbow of fruits and veggies; here are some examples of what to reach for: broccoli, kale, collards, rutabaga, turnips, berries.
  2. Consume essential fats: Getting a good ratio of omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids in your diet is important for reducing inflammation. Most of us consume too much omega-6 and not enough omega-3, so the key to balancing things is to increase omega-3 intake. Omega-6-heavy foods like seeds and nuts and their oils, and refined vegetable oils (used in many snack foods, crackers, cookies, etc.), tend to stir up inflammation, while foods high in omega-3 fatty acids like salmon, flax and chia seeds, avocado and walnuts dampen it.
  3. Add spices: Turmeric, garlic, cinnamon, cayenne pepper and ginger have all been shown in studies to have anti-inflammatory properties. You can't overdo these, so sprinkle them liberally onto your food.
  4. Exercise: Moving around releases a burst of anti-inflammatory proteins from the cells to the rest of the body. However, moderate exercise is key. An example of moderate exercise is 45-60 minutes of cardio, such as walking or jogging, about three times a week.
  5. Stress: Cortisol, the so-called "stress" hormone, wears many other hats, including regulating the immune response. Reducing stress helps to keep hormones like cortisol under control and that, in turn, helps lower inflammation.
  6. Sleep: Lack of sleep makes the body ripe for infection, while more sleep has the opposite effect. A review of several studies published in 2008 found that sleeping less than eight hours a night was linked to weight gain. There is a complex yet harmonious dance occurring in your body during restful sleep; this strengthens your immune system in a good way
  Fatigue is voluntary.
  You are an 'experiment of one' 




This Weeks WORKOUTS 


 Tuesdays/Wednesday AHS Track is back on 'track'.


-   START 6:30pm   

 This Tuesday is speed work at AHS TRACK for 5 x 600 (1 1/2 lap) + 4 x 100. Number depending on heat index. Same as Intervals - .  KEEP THEM CONSISTENT. 

Be sure to work hard to stay consistent and steady. Always do 1 Mile EASY Cool Down. Steady - Steady - Steady - Relax


During the Warm up do some Knee lifts on one curve and Butt-kicks on the other curve, and jog the straight-aways. THIS is IMPORTANT. 


Saturday Run 

***START AT 7:00am 


Long Slow Distance: 1st - 20 MILES - 65% Effort. 

This week is a increase in distance but I want you to pick up the pace the last two miles before the 2 MILE STOP, then use the last 2 miles (and 'the three bears) to recovery at a moderate jog. 

 Remember to Record time, distance, HR, how you felt, humidity, temp for comparison later.


Hope to see you at the track.     


bluepoint cat

SPRING/SUMMER Moore's Marines Long Distance Training
Kent Island Running CLUB
Peninsula Pacers Running CLUB
Anne Arundel County STRIDERS

 Week #190, 22 AUGUST 2015


30 Years of MOORE'S MARINES 

 'Even when you have gone as far as you can,- and everything hurts,- and you are staring at the specter of self-doubt, you can find a bit more strength deep inside you, if you look closely enough.."
Hal Higdon 
Note: If you have an article, link, tip, race accomplishment or milestone to pass on to the group, please let me know. Use Annapolis Trail Runners Facebook Group to share tips and questions directly with everyone in the group.
THANKS to STU BLAND for his donation to the Port A Pot. Derek has been the most consistent donor for a long time.
 We have 7 months of Port A Pot coverage

I spent the weekend 'crewing' for Ron Hooker and Jim Le Clare through the EASTERN STATES 100 near Williamsport PA.  It was quite an adventure - for them AND Barb Hamilton and I.  The trepedation Ron and Jim expressed the days before,- despite my sage-est advice to 'take the day as it comes'- were completely justified.  The fist hint was the 36 hour final cut-off; 6 hours longer than most 100 races.
  Short version; Ron made to the Half-Way House at 50 miles.  His (recurring) achilles injury flaired up and he (wisely) decided not to take a chance of further injury, even though he felt strong enough to continue.  Jim got behind the 'energy curve' and did a gradual fade until he missed the cut-off at 48 miles.
  Let me put this effort in perspective.  The cut-off for the 50 mile Aid Station was 18 hours - 11pm!  Of the 185 Starters, only 57 finished in the 36 hour limit ; a 70% DNF rate.  Micheal Wardian (one of the strongest runners in the world - and a local) was the winner in 21hrs 21 minutes.  That would not put him in the top 30 in most 100 races.  2nd Place was 3 hours back.
 There was a marathon that started 2 hrs after the 100.   (Hmmm, next year destination marathon?).  It covers the same first 17 miles of the 100.  Last years winner finished in 5 hr 20 min. 

NOTE:  Tuesday Track Session 6:30pm we will do AHS Track session.  Come out and join us.
    Tom Nelson has diligently collected GPS maps of the many routes we use from Truman.  Here is a link to his excellent Runningahead routes:  Click here for:  

Sage Canaday recently wrote this article showing that Periodization is not just for triathletes.
"In college, I ran cross-country and track for a coach who had us race as infrequently as possible. "You can't have it all, all the time," he would tell us, and the races that mattered were in November and May. Just as pulling carrots from the ground to see how they're growing is counterproductive, attempting to PR each month of the year means that that PR would remain slower than it could.
A few years later, as I cut my teeth in trail and ultra running, I was astounded at how often people raced distances in excess of a marathon-once a month or more seems commonplace during the peak racing season, even among pros. There are a lot of reasons for that-fun, camaraderie and, increasingly, prize money-but there is no way, I thought, that anyone is racing their best when they race that frequently.
Sage Canaday, 29, of Boulder, Colorado-who was faster than me in college cross-country and remains faster than me on the trails-agrees. "I believe you can be at about 90 percent of your maximum potential and fitness for the majority of the year," says Canaday, whose 2014 season included wins at the Speedgoat 50K and The North Face Endurance Challenge 50 Mile in San Francisco. "However, if you really want to target a certain race and go for that 100-percent effort and performance, you're going to have to make sacrifices in your training and racing schedule."
Periodization: the basics
Periodization is the process of building your running systems one at a time until they accumulate into a peak race performance. Canaday  compares it to making a pizza.
"Periodization comes down to looking at chunks of time in your training schedule and deciding what sequence and type of different workout stimulus you want to induce ... with an end result in mind," he says. "We are following a recipe-your training plan-and then carefully adding in certain amounts of ingredients-your different types of workouts-all in the correct proportion and at the right time."
In training, as with baking, Canaday says timing is just as important as proportions.
"Do too much of any type of workout or do a workout at the wrong time, or both, and you could end up coming out 'flat' and your pizza isn't going to taste very good," he says. "If you overtrain and work out at too high of an intensity, you might burn out-much like overbaking a pizza."
In other words, to really nail a race, you not only have to set aside a few months to train, but you have to structure those months in a way that accumulates fitness, addresses your weaknesses and builds on your strengths, and does so with an eye toward the specific course on which you'll be racing.

What it looks like
The first periodized plan I ever saw-one I still roughly follow today-was written for a marathon by Minneapolis-based coach Chris Lundstrom. It consisted of:

6 weeks: base-building, up to peak mileage, some hill sprints but no speed work
4-6 weeks: faster intervals and VO2 max (e.g. 8 x 1K at 5K race effort)
6-8 weeks: lactate-threshold (or tempo) and race-specific workouts (e.g. marathon-pace long runs)
2-3 weeks: pre-race taper (same intensity but lower volume to avoid sluggishness)

The idea is pretty simple: you first build a base (the "crust" of the pizza), develop your top-end speed and efficiency, hone your race pace and prowess over longer distances, and then rest just the right amount to utilize it all. As a bonus, you try to do long runs on a course that closely resembles the surface and terrain you'll see on race day. Most marathon plans are a variation of this-some switch the VO2 and tempo phases-and those general principles can be applied to almost any race.
Canaday's athletes follow a 16-week plan (preceded by some base mileage), and while each phase of the training program emphasizes a certain type of workout and physiological system, every 14 days or so will include one of every workout type: "Basic speed, easy-pace endurance, a long-run stimulus, a lactate-threshold stimulus and maybe even an element of VO2 max/running economy," he says.
Early on, Canaday introduces some relatively short and easy speedwork: "Something like a 20-minute tempo run at 85% of maximum heart rate or effort, or ... four to five 100-meter short 'stride' accelerations after their easy runs," he says. "The key early on in training phases is not to induce too much lactic acid."
More intense phases of the plan include more high-intensity workouts like VO2 max intervals, "but we work with variables like the duration of the interval, the recovery period and the volume of quality miles in each workout," says Canaday. "Always working on progression and allowing for adaptation is the real key. We try to develop consistency in all the training phases but at the same time we are constantly introducing slightly new challenges that allow for adaptation and a more fit athlete."
In other words, if Canaday's plan is like a pizza, the one I first outlined might be more like a Chipotle burrito, with each ingredient very ... distinct. Still, they both get the job done.
Maximize performance-and your schedule
This doesn't necessarily mean you'll have to choose between racing well and running the races you want to run-it just means you'll have to plan carefully.

"You can only be at or near 100 percent for a limited time, and that level of fitness and performance is only specific to the demands of a race that you trained for," says Canaday. He admits he might race too frequently, but says he takes care to pick races that aren't too drastically different from each other to make the best use of his fitness. "Being in great mountain-running shape and transitioning from racing a very hilly 50K to racing a very hilly 50-miler is a much better plan and build-up in terms of periodization than trying to run a flat and fast road marathon and then trying to do a 100K in the mountains."
He says specificity in training is key-as is patience. Reining yourself in after the race of your life might be a tough pill to swallow-or even seem counterintuitive-but it will pay off at your next goal race.
"For people who risk overtraining or burnout, I always think, 'You can't burn out unless you've caught fire,' " says Canaday. "Once you catch fire and nail a race, you might want to consider taking a little break and starting your training all over again."


Every now and then I come across some good running humor, but rarely does it also touch on the philosophy of running.  Here is something I found on the VHRTC forum.  Enjoy! 

Ultrarunners Have Longer Telomeres (Which is Good)

When it comes to telomeres, bigger is better. And that's good news for regular runners, according to new research out of Australia.
Telomeres are DNA strands at the end of chromosomes that, current thinking goes, work like the plastic tips of shoelaces to prevent fraying (in this case, the fraying of genes). As telomeres shrink with age, cellular susceptibility to disease increases. Therefore, having longer telomeres, the theory goes, should provide protection against disease, and result in a lower biological age (compared to chronological age) than someone with shorter telomeres.
In a study published in the online journal PLoS One, Australian researchers report that ultrarunners have telomeres that are 11% longer than those of age-matched sedentary people. As a result, the researchers write, the ultrarunners have a biological age 16 years less than their chronological age (which was an average of 43).
The researchers say these differences aren't related to the ultrarunners' better risk profiles for cardiovascular disease. That is, the fact that the ultrarunners had better blood pressure and other measurements "had no effect on the association between telomere length and ultra-endurance aerobic exercise," the researchers wrote. However running might favorably affect telomere length, it does so independently of the known heart-health benefits of regular aerobic exercise.
"Patients with a variety of chronic diseases exhibit shorter telomeres when compared to healthy individuals," Fadi Charchar, Ph.D., of the University of Ballarat, in Victoria, Australia, and one of the study authors, told Runner's World Newswire. "The trick is that we can actually do things to make our telomeres last longer. We found that doing running--and lots of running--can be one of those great things for telomeres."
Charchar told Newswire that although his research involved ultrarunners, it has significance for many runners.
"The ultramarathon runners from our study performed an average 40 to 100 kilometers [25 to 62 miles] of running each week," Charchar said. "A large percentage of recreational runners would accrue a similar volume of training each week."
Telomeres remain an intriguing frontier in research into aging and the benefits of exercise.
"There are many questions left unanswered in regards to exercise and the effect on telomere length," Charchar said. "For example, is there a minimum amount of exercise that confers ideal telomere length maintenance? Is there a threshold at which point exercise does not benefit telomere length maintenance? Is the benefit exercise has to telomeres intensity-dependent? How are the telomeres being maintained?"
While scientists pursue those questions, the rest of us should keep running, Charchar advises.
"At this stage, the supporting literature and results from our study demonstrate that aerobic endurance exercise benefits telomere length maintenance," he said.

Take the challenge - RUN THE BRIDGE!  On November 8th, the 2nd annual Across the Bay 10k will take place.  If you didn't make it last year, you can look forward to a great event that includes crossing the bay bridge on foot and rocking out to live music when you finish!
Every participant gets shuttle transportation, finish line food, a commemorative event tech shirt and finish line medal.


Tom Nelson has constructed a site to show our routes and water stop locations for the long run coming up each week.  You can indicate your intention to run and see who else is planning on showing up - one more incentive for getting there. Check back to the following website later in the week for the latest info on water support:




 Stay Healthy;   


   c: 410-570-0003