Wednesday, November 23, 2011

Just a Quick Note

In 2008, without having bike 112 miles or swam 2.4 miles, I raced in the Rock N Roll Marathon in Arizona on what sounds like a similar course to this past weekend's Ironman. Amber just ran a 3:21:54 after doing all that!
Sometimes, because she does so well so often, I think people(or at least I do) occasionally lose sight of just how many amazing crazy things she does. My parents always feel badly not knowing which racing are the important ones because she places so well at most of them. She is always so consistent and produces such great results that sometimes I come to expect them without really thinking just how amazing it is. Just in the last year or so Amber has become the US snowshoe champion(2010), qualified for Kona(2010), qualified for Clearwater(2010), qualified for US duathlon nationals(2010), became a pro triathlete(2011), ran a 3:03 marathon a week after Kona(2010) and just finished well under 10 hours at Ironman Arizona (2011). What makes this more amazing is that just a few years ago, she didn't own a road bike and was scared to go downhills without riding her brakes. Two years ago, she had never run on snowshoes. And last year's duathlon was her first ever. And she eats dessert nearly every night!
Remember how I was taking violin lessons? While butchering the song I was trying to learn the other day, Amber took the violin out of my hands and played it perfectly. Freakin' PERFECTLY! She's also an excellent artist often drawing thank- you cards by hand.
Pretty much what I'm saying is that on the day before Thanksgiving I'm giving thanks for having, in addition to an awesome family and friends, a pretty cool athletic wife that can pretty much kick my butt at everything.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Amber Ferreira is a sub-10 Hour Ironman! Ironman Arizona.

Amber went down this past weekend to Tempe, Arizona to compete in Ironman Arizona. I was unable to go due to using up too much of my days off with my Munich and China trips earlier this year, so I had to resign myself to watching her on the internet. As mentioned before, this race was stacked! Many of these women were coming off some excellent seasons and were expected to being vying for early season points for 2012. While Amber had been working hard, the October snow storm, and a stomach bug that went around had limited to some extent her ability to train and therefore we weren't sure how well she'd hold up. Amber did have some redemption she needed though at this race course, as it was the same one(only longer) that she had her un-illustrious Best of the US race a couple of years ago.

I'll let Amber do a formal race report but I just wanted to give a perspective of my day while she raced.

7am(5am in Arizona)-Amber texts me good morning. She's getting ready to head to the race start.

9am- Came back from a walk with my parents drove thirty minutes back to my house.

9:55am- Amber finishes her swim in a time of 55:22 good enough for 12th woman.

10am- Danny goes for a ten mile run.

11:10am- Danny has breakfast and showers. He puts back on his sweats he slept in.

11:40am-Amber crosses 37.4 miles averaging 21.53 mph on the bike.

11:41am-Danny takes an hour nap.

1:26pm- Amber crosses 74.6 miles averaging 20.98 mph.

1:30pm- Danny goes for a walk and grabs lunch.

3:15pm- Amber gets off the bike averaging 20.55 mph for the last 37.4 and 21.01mph for the 112 total.

3:16pm- Danny is still in sweats.

3:32pm- Amber runs the first 2.5 miles of the marathon in 17:17(6:54pace)!

4:35pm- Amber just covered the last 9 miles in 6:59 pace. She's passing people!

4:40pm- Danny thinks it's time he starts sending some good mojo Am's way so changes into his running clothes and does a late evening track workout.

5:10pm- Danny returns.

5:44pm- Although slowing slightly, Amber has moved from 22nd place at the beginning of the run to 15th!

5:45pm- Danny has dinner.

6:42pm- Amber finishes the marathon in a time of 3:21:54 with an overall race time of 9:42:20. 15th Pro female and 95th racer(male and female) OVERALL!

6:45pm- Danny celebrates with dessert.

6:55pm- Amber borrows our friend's, Jimmie Cochrane, phone at the finish and calls me to say we're going to Disney World! Okay so she didn't say that but we did talk and I told her how proud I was of her.

10pm- Danny goes to bed

10:25pm- Amber wakes up Danny to wish him a good night sleep. She has just finished munching on her 5th slice of pizza and (2) burgers. Time for Amber to replenish calories and for Danny to sleep.

2am(midnight Arizona time, 17hours after the start)- The last finishers hear the announcers shouting: "You are an Ironman!"

Congratulations to all finisher's in yesterday's race.

This was Am's first race breaking 10 hours and she did it big time. I cannot wait to see how well she does next season after dedicating her winter on getting faster on the bike. To quote her coach, Kurt Perham: "Amber, I envision a long winter of biking. Sorry Snowshoe Fans!" While that may be a loss for snowshoe fans, next year will certainly make up for it for the triathlon fans.

Hope everyone has a happy Thanksgiving! Find a Turkey trot and spend some quality time with loved ones.

Friday, November 18, 2011

RI 6 hour Relay

For the second year in a row, I joined acidotic RACING down in Warwick, Rhode Island to be a part of the RI6HR relay this past weekend. The race is comprised of a 2.7 mile loop that you try to complete as many times as possible in a six hour period. Mid-way through a loop when the six hour time elapses and that half lap doesn't count. Which means getting sixty miles is tricky. Getting 59.4 is pretty easy- 22 laps brings you in at 6:04 pace. However, to get that extra 2.1 miles you have to run 5:48 pace. Substantially more challenging. But a challenge that aR was up for. But first things first. It is Movember at all so we all needed to grow out our 'staches. And grow them out we did. To vary degrees of creepiness. Rhode Islanders must have an interesting view of aR racers since this is our only race down there and we always show up with upper lip hair.

Our team was revamped a bit from last year. Due to a supposed injury(which apparently didn't stop him from competing in and doing well at the Pinnacle Challenge), Steve Wolfe was out. In his stead was Chris Lalmond a solid trail runner from aR. We had borrowed CMS's Alan Bernier last year due to a last minute cancellation so we replaced him with aR's breadwinner, Judson Cake. So the team was as follows:

Judson Cake- Goal lap pace: 5:05-5:15
Charlie Therriault- Goal lap pace: 5:30-5:45
Danny Ferreira- Goal lap pace: 5:35-5:50

Chris Lalmond- Goal lap pace: 5:40-5:55
Rich Lavers- Goal lap pace: 5:50-6:05

Chris Dunn- Goal lap pace: 5:55-6:10

We were here to cover 23 laps in under 6 hours but also to win and take home the 3 cases of RedHook beer. Thanks to the Tuesday Night Turtles and race director, Robert Jackman, we could count on a well-run event with good prizes.

The race started off well with Judson running a 13:58(5:10's), followed by Charlie running 5:4x's and
me running 5:36's. The first sign of something amiss was when Chris L was seen hobbling in running 20 or so seconds slower than what he should have been. Apparently his foot had been bothering him and it flared up on the run. Undeterred, Rich and Chris Dunn both put down some fast laps with Chris(typical of his sandbagging ways) running 5:55's for his first lap. After six laps, we were ahead of pace to break 23 laps.
Chris L tried a second lap but after coming in looking worse than the first, he was convinced by us that it would behoove him to take the rest of the day off. As much as we wanted that beer and the win, losing a season of it definitely wasn't worth it.
After that we ran a man down, but it wasn't evident by our paces. As the last set of laps came around, however, we had all slowed just enough to realize that the 23rd lap was out of our reach. Despite a valient effort by Chris and Judson, we came up about a minute short. We ended up finishing the 22nd lap in 5:47:33 which was 5:51 pace just about 1:33 too slow for Judson to get that 23. Well there's always next year.
Chris L, Chris D, Judson, Rich, Charlie, Danny

Judson taking off
So while we are running all out for 15 or so minutes at a time, there are ultramarathoners on the course vying for the New England Ultra championships. Teammate Ryan Welts was there, keeping up with two time winner Ben Nephew for the first few hours. It was fun to watch as well as run along aside some of them. It did get me wondering again about the sustainability of ultrarunning, though.
Teammate Ryan Welts racing acidotic next to eventual winner Ben Nephew

Danny starts off on his lap
I ended up finishing with the following splits:
Lap 1: 15:13 5:38 pace
Lap 2: 15:07 5:36 pace
Lap 3: 15:13 5:38 pace
Lap 4: 15:19 5:40 pace

As always a fun event that is quickly becoming an aR tradition. Next year we're expecting that we'll bring two teams down at least.

Up Next?  Follow Amber at for Ironman Arizona this Sunday!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Danny's PR's (Not as impressive as Amber)

I have a relatively lazy day today and figured I'd compile a list of my racing personal records(PR's) since I started running, (and arguably swimming and biking) in 2007. As you will see below, almost all of my PR's came this year. I'd like to PR in 2012 at the 800m, mile, 5k and marathon as well as the Ironman(at Mont Tremblant). PR from the 800 to 140.6? Yep. That's the plan. We shall see.

Here are the records(better than the year before but hopefully not as good as next year):
  • 200 m- 27.35 seconds (Greater Boston Track Club Invitational 2011)*
  • 400m-56 seconds(Ultimate Runner 2011) *
  • 800m- 2:18(Ultimate Runner 2011) *
  • Mile- 5:03(Greater Boston Track Club Invitational 2011)^
  • 5k-16:43(NHTI/Delta Dental 5K 2011)
  • 10k - 36:25 (Run Your Hangover Off 2011)
  • 10 Mile- 59:08(Granite State 10 Miler 2011)
  • Half Marathon- 1:15:16(New Bedford 2011)
  • 20 Miles- 2:18:26(Martha's Vineyard 2009)
  • Marathon- 2:47:45(Exeter Marathon 2010)
  • 50 Miler-8:22:00(Pineland Farms 2009)*
  • 100 Miler- 27:43:23.4(Leadville 100 2010)+
  • Half Ironman: 5:08(Texas 70.3 2011)
  • Ironman: 11:19:03(St. George 2011)*
  • 6 mile Swim: 1:59:17(Little Red Lighthouse 2010)*
* = Only time racing that distance
+ = Only time finishing that distance
^ =Didn't count the downhill Millennium Mile since hard to reproduce elsewhere.

Up Next: IRONMAN ARIZONA for Amber(she leaves today!). Nothing for Danny this weekend as the Halloweiner race wouldn't let him do the four person race independently. Lazy day turns into lazy weekend. I will definitely be watching ZONA on Sunday though at

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Tentative 2012 Race Schedule

Tentative 2012 Race Schedule- Races in red are ones Danny is planning on doing, Blue Amber and purple both of us. I do realize there is an ultramarathon  potentially on my schedule but I think it will be balanced by all the mile races I hope to do this year. That study won't be out that soon anyway so I'll assume that ultras aren't bad for me.

Jan 1- Millenium Mile

Jan 7- Bear paw classic

Jan 7- Roxbury Community College Indoor Track Meet(mile, 800)

Jan 8- Dartmouth Relays

Jan 14- Winter Wild at Whaleback

Jan 21-Whittaker woods

Jan 22- Greater Boston Track Club Invitational(mile, 800 and 200)

Jan 28- Sidehiller Snowshoe

Jan 29-Curley's Record Run

Feb 4- Exeter Snowshoe

Feb 11-Horsehill Snowshoe

Feb 11(evening)- BU Valentine Invitational

Feb 12- Hoot, Toot and Whistle Snowshoe

Feb 18- Martha's vineyard 20 miler

Feb 18-(evening) Kingman farm

Feb 19 Half at the Hamptons

Feb 25-Granite State ss championship(or Nationals)

Feb 26- Hyannis marathon(or snowshoe nationals)

March 3- Hawley Kiln Snowshoe

March 17- winter wild at bretton woods

March 18- New Bedford Half Marathon

March 31- Gilmanton Road RaceApril 7- Great bay half marathon

April 14- Gansett marathon

April 22- New Orleans 70.3

April 28- Quabbin Reservoir Classic Road Race

May 5- Ironheart Classic 5k

May 6- Knoxville HalfRev

May 12- Canterbury 5k

May 17- Rock N Race 5k

May 19- Bedford Rotary 12k

June 2- Over the River and Thru the Woods

June 3- Mooseman 70.3

June 9- Black Fly In My Eye 10 Mile Trail Run

June 16- Mount Washington road race

June 24- Syracuse 70.3

July 8- Providence 70.3

July 13-15- Hardrock 100(pending lottery results)

July 21- Carver Cranberry 5 Miler

July 28- Canterbury Woodchuck

August 5- Hospital day tri

August 19- Ironman mont tremblant

August 26-Old Orchard Beach Rev3 Olympic
Sept 9- Half Ironman Championships

Oct 28- Cape Cod Marathon

 Most likely we'll throw in some shorter stuff in between as well. Looks to be another fun year of racing!

Up Next: IRONMAN ARIZONA for Amber. Follow her live as WTC tries out a new system where you can view her status throughout the entire race(instead of just at the timing mats).

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

The Sustainability of Endurance Sports Revisited-Be Part of the Study!

After watching the RI 6 Hour Ultramarathon this past week, I again questioned the sanity and safety of ultrarunning. I have in the past wondered this but now there may be a definitive answer on the horizon. Dr. Marty Hoffman professor at University of California, associated with the VA Northern California Health Care System,  and the director of the Western States Ultramarathon will be organizing a multi-year study looking at the health of Ultrarunners called the Ultrarunners Longitudinal TRAcking (ULTRA) Study. I was able to speak with him via email and he seems very excited to get as many runners as possible involved. You can participate if you've done at least one ultramarathon (50 K or longer).

The main purpose of his study is to compare moderate and sedentary lifestyles to those with high levels of exercise and whether the level of exercise alters health risks. This information will be helpful to determine health benefits or risks of participation in ultra-endurance activities.

If you are interested in participating, you will be asked to complete an initial web-based questionnaire that takes about thirty minutes. There will then be periodic follow-up questionnaires over the course of many years.

You may contact Dr Hoffman to discuss the study at (916) 843-9027 or

If you would like to participate in the study, check it out here.

Up Next: Amber: IRONMAN ARIZONA! Check her out and follow her at

Friday, November 11, 2011

Ironman Arizona Race Preview- Stacked Pro Field!

Amber will be heading out to Arizona for her last triathlon of the season. Possibly due to it being the end of the season or due to the large prize purse of $75,000, it appears that a lot of other professional triathletes have decided to also use this race as a nice wrap up for 2011. Also it may be a good way to get some Kona points for 2012 banked before the year ends.

 Here is the official start list from the website. I've tried to find all of these triathletes' websites but there were a few that I was unable to.

  1. Teri Albertazzi-
  2. Jackie Arendt-
  3. Kathleen Calkins-
  4. Leanda Cave-
  5.  Jeanne Collonge-
  6. Linsey Corbin- 
  7. Erika Csomor-
  8. Marie Danais-
  9. Susan Dietrich-
  10. Jessie Donavan-
  11. Rebekka Essmuller-
  12. Amber Ferreira-
  13. Whitney Gracia-
  14. Caroline Gregory-
  15. Sara Gross-
  16. Meredith Kessler-
  17. Tamara Kozulina-
  18. Nina Kraft-
  19. Kelly Lijiblad-
  20. MacKenzie Madison-
  21. Donna Phelan-
  22. Lisa Ribes-
  23. Regula Rohrbach-
  24. Jessica Smith-
  25. Erin Spitler-
  26. Amanda Stevens-
  27. Michelle Vesterby-
  28. Mirjam Weerd-
  29. Charisa Wernick-
  30. Kristen White-
  31. Kelly Williamson-

 Holy Smokes! This looks like the Kona Start list.

 Here's a look at the course itself:

The Swim: Looks pretty straight-forward: a very narrow rectangle, triathletes will swim out a little over a mile, take a .1  mile left hand turn before starting about a 1.2 mile swim back to the finish. The water temp should be in the low 60's.

The Bike: Consists of three out and back ~37 mile loops which include a 10 mile climb in the desert before the turn around. Guaranteed to be exposed and hot, but likely not oppressively so.

The Run: As simple and straight-forward the swim and bike are, the run appears to make up for it in its tortuous and circuitousness. From the description, it doesn't appear to be a multi-lap course but rather a series of three distinct laps, an out and back, a rectangular loop hugging the lakeshore and a loop with a lollipop out and back. Again there doesn't appear to be much shade to be had so sunscreen will be a must!

This race is going to be FAST both because of the depth of the field as well as the course itself. Take a look at the results of last year. The TOP 11 women went sub-10 hours!

       1. Wellington, Chrissie   08:36:13 (with a 02:52:55 marathon!)

       2. Corbin, Linsey  09:05:33

       3. Cave, Leanda  09:13:50

      4.  Kessler, Meredith 09:15:01

     5. Wurtele, Heather  09:19:10

     6. Csomor, Erika 09:22:38

     7. Madison, Mackenzie 09:24:11

     8. bij de Vaate, Heleen  09:29:15

     9. Bromme, Uli 09:31:22

     10. Harrison, Lauren 09:33:53

     11. Kamenz, Annett    09:49:18

Most likely this year will be even faster as more pro's are vying for those 30 coveted Kona slots for 2012. Good luck to all athletes racing in Arizona!
Up Next: Amber: November 20th Ironman Arizona follow her at; Danny: RI 6 Hour Relay with Acidotic this weekend. Growing the 'Mo for Prostate Cancer Awareness month.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Cape Cod Marathon Race(walk) Report

If you haven't read Keith Shields interview with us, click here. It is very funny. Below is a somewhat whiny race report so if you've read enough of those, do as I do and just look at the pretty pictures.
Smiling because I know I will be done soon
This past weekend I missed the Blizzard of October by being down in the rather balmy(by comparison only) Cape Cod. I went down with my friend, fellow race director and teammate Rich Lavers on Saturday with his wife and son. We spent the day hanging out with his family who lives down in Falmouth, going to the expo and driving the course. Did I mention the torrential downpour? How about the 30-40 mile an hour wind? Hydroplaning a dozen times in as many miles? Locusts? Okay well no locusts, but you get the idea. The weather was miserable. Two weeks before, Rich had been swimming here and now the temperature was hovering right above freezing. Tree branches were down everywhere.

Note: That is an aR singlet but I was racing for GCS. No singlet yet for them.
I had been training for Cape Cod Marathon for probably the longest of any of my marathons hoping to not only help my team, the Gate City Striders, but also set a new PR. I even held off running any races the day before on Michael Wade's recommendation that it may hinder my marathon performance. The only thing that hindered my marathon performance was my performance. I fell off pace a bit the second ten miles dropping from 6:20 pace to 6:40 but could have still finished fairly well. However, I started thinking(which is never a good thing for me to do) and soon I felt some cramping come on. Was it really cramping or was it all in my head? I'm not sure but all I had to do was run under 25 minutes for the last 5k to break 3 hours but I didn't having to walk miles 24 and 26. Not too impressive.

I can talk about the strong wind gusts, the dehydration from unmanned water stops and lack of long-run training, but that would entirely be ridiculous. I have run faster in strong winds, further with less water and NEVER train with long runs so I cannot blame my performance on any of those things. Additionally, I had my parents pop up at multiple spots along the course in addition to Rich's so I probably had more motivation to keep me going. But for whatever reason I didn't. But luckily they say that gold fish have no memories so their minds are much like mine as this little thing called running is a surprise every time. Best thing to do when you have a lousy(compared to your expectations)race? Train More? No way! Sign up for another race. Hopefully a destination far far away.

Quick Aside: Typically I just throw up pictures on this blog that were shared with me or taken by someone I know. If you notice, a lot of them have a similar name at the bottom: Scott Mason. Scott Mason is an amazing photographer and I am glad to be able to call him a friend. I am always a little disappointed to see him on the sidelines as he is also a great runner but I know that at least I will be getting great photos taken. Check out his website for some amazing pictures.


 This was the second marathon this year that I also did my first year(2007) of running. While I improved my Hyannis marathon time by almost two hours, I only improved by Cape Cod time by 16 minutes. Darn.

 Danny's 24 Marathons to Date:
  1. 10/30/11 Cape Cod Marathon 3:04:54 ---->; BOSTON QUALIFIER
  2. 9/25/11 Adirondack Marathon 3:10:00
  3. 5/7/11 Ironman St. George 3:56:43
  4. 4/16/11 Gansett Marathon 2:52:46---->; BOSTON QUALIFIER
  5. 2/27/11   Hyannis Marathon  2:49:02---->; BOSTON QUALIFIER
  6. 11/6/10 Manchester Marathon 3:33:02(PACER)
  7. 10/31/10 Marine Corps Marathon 2:52:57 --->; BOSTON QUALIFIER
  8. 5/2/10 Cincinnati Flying Pig Marathon 3:02:21 --->; BOSTON QUALIFIER
  9. 4/17/10 Gansett Marathon(Exeter) 2:47:45 ---> BOSTON QUALIFIER
  10. 2/28/10 New Orleans Mardi Gras Marathon 2:51:44 ---> BOSTON QUALIFIER
  11. 11/1/09 Manchester City Marathon 3:33:18
  12. 10/18/09 Bay State Marathon 3:21:23
  13. 3/29/09 Ocean Drive Marathon 3:01:41 --->; BOSTON QUALIFIER
  14. 3/07/09 Peak Snowshoe Marathon 6:29:10
  15. 12/13/08 Roxbury Marathon 4:33:23 
  16. 11/2/08 Manchester City Marathon 3:08:41 --->; BOSTON QUALIFIER
  17. 10/18/08 Breakers Marathon 3:25:30
  18. 10/5/08 Maine Marathon 3:19:24 
  19. 5/25/08 Vermont City Marathon 3:26:05 
  20. 4/21/08 Boston Marathon 3:34:44 
  21. 1/13/08 Rock 'n' Roll Arizona Marathon 3:21:34 
  22. 10/28/07 Cape Cod Marathon 3:20:48 
  23. 9/22/07 Odyssey Trail Marathon 6:08:11 
  24. 2/25/07 Hyannis Marathon 4:44:46
 Up Next: Amber Ironman Arizona; Danny- Yoga, rest and relaxation