MCM 2018/T-Minus 2:Journey

Marine Corps Health and Fitness Expo 2018: You can’t always get what you want (Day-Glo fluorescent long-sleeve tech shirts for women but not for men? Like men don’t run in pre-dawn/dusk hours?)…

…but if you try sometimes, you just might find you get what you need (my running style analyzed and defined, plus  my new shoes for 2019 taken care of; KT tape and a new analgesic cream for my sore right calf; also: TAILWIND!).

The blog has gotten mundane lately so I thought tonight I wanted to talk about my favorite running courses that I’ve discovered over my four year journey. Actually, I started running in 2014, but I skipped last year, so…four.

3 mile: Marine Aviation Detachment Physical Fitness Test 3-mile run course. The “official” start and finish of my MCM training every year; had to pass on it this year.

4 mile: iStorage 4: South Willows Road to HWY-5, back to up the hill past Abberly Crest, run to the iStorage facility and back to AC.

5: Hilton Ridge: South Willows to HWY-5 to Hilton Ridge Road. Going south on HWY-5 takes you up a big, curved hill.

6: Zion 6: Ran this yesterday morning. Nice and flat from Abberly Crest, north on Willow Road to Shangdi-La, then running towards NAS Pax Rver Gate 2 and taking a right down Three Notch Road, where there’s one quick dip and then it goes level up to Zion United methodist Church.

7.5: St. Mary’s River State Park: The only trail route on this list. Lots of elevation changes and a rough trail with lots of slippery rocks and exposed branches. Want a challenge? Do two laps.

8: Great Mills 8:South Willow Road to HWY-5 South to Sheetz then up Great Mills Rd to Shangri-La, and back home. I love climbing up and down Great Mills Road, and you can’t find a more convenient potty-break than McDonald’s,

9: Capital Crescent: Great course that starts at Washington Harbor in Georgetown (Washington, DC). I usually run this up to the Dalecarlia Tunnel and back. Lots of scenery changes on an uphill climb from the Georgetown end.

10.5: Carl Henn Millennium Trail, Rockville, MD: Running over hill and dale of the perimeter of Rockville, MD. I have done this the last two years as a two-lapper and the challenge is worth every step. Best-marked course.

12: St. Mary’s City 12: When I discovered what a short drive to the annual St. Mary’s City Turkey Trot was, I said to myself “I am so running this for my long-distance run one day.” Nothing like seeing Historic St. Mary’s City just before dawn. Beautiful. Following HWY-5 South to Point Lookout Road into St. Mary’s.

13.1: Riley’s Rumble Half-Marathon: “Heat, hills, and humidity.” Frozen pops at the turnaround point. A damn-near vertical mile 12. You run this race for the love of running.

13.1 Indian Head Rail Trail, Indian Head, MD. One of the Maryland Rail Trails, running from Indian Head to Waldorf. Lots of wetland and forest, with some glimpses of wildlife on the way (deer, heron, etc.). Also good job on the mile markers. Running for full marathon distance? Four of the last six miles are on a steady incline. Also, Indian head is home to two great BBQ joints.

16: Southern Cross 16: When I was staying at a hotel while my air conditioner was being fixed, I plotted this course on MapMyRun. A good tour of Three Notch Road south, onto Point Lookout Road and then HWY-5 south all the way to Great Mills Road. Good hill work on Three Notch and Great Mills Rd.

18: Mt. Vernon Trail: Starting at the Rosslyn tip, just before dawn, then running by the DC monuments by the Potomac just before sunrise. Running by Reagan National Airport. Even though it wasn’t part of the course (take the “alternate route” and run through the Old Town parks), running through Old Town Alexandria at 0600 was real nice. Finishing at George Washington’s historic Mt. Vernon estate.

20: Pax River 20: A combination of many of my routes in the Patuxent River area. Covering the Naval Air Station and adding parts of Three Notch Road, and Great Mills Road.

Song of the Day: “Tell Me Why”/Supermode. An update of the 80s song “Smalltown Boy” by Bronchi Beat. Some remixes of this song incorporate some of the lyrics from the original song as well. I love this song because it’s so danceable. I downloaded four versions of this song on iTunes and put them together back-to-back on a mix CD a few years ago; good way to start a record.

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