Thanksgiving break

After a week off, I was ready for some kind of run on Friday. Man, I was hyper! Got Joseph after school and we got in 5 miles at a 6:54 pace on the South Farm before it got dark. Would like to have gone farther, but the day was quickly becoming night.

Saturday, Joseph headed to Oxford, MS  for some kind of choir competition. Cross country to choir! Actually, quite a few of XC kids are in the school choir. Similarly, key elements for being successful at both are being relaxing and confident! I got in a run of about an hour later in the day at the XC course and South Farm. I met a couple of MSU runners out there and ran with them for a couple of miles. When I came upon them, they were trying to figure out how to circumvent a couple of young bulls that escaped their fenced pasture. These two fellers, Patrick and Andrew Moneghan, are ridiculously fast freshmen from Ireland. Fortunately for me, they were only doing an easy recovery run! The pace we were running at was 6:25-6:30. You should read their bios on the MSU Athletic site (Andrew’s bio: and Patrick’s:

Joseph got up early Sunday for a easy run around our trails. I don’t how he got up, as we stayed up late watching the new “Taken” movie and got to bed pretty late. It was a beautiful day, so I went ahead and got in a run on the trail around noon. Did an easy jog, then 8 X 400 on the back loop of my trail, then an easy jog. I did not wear a watch, so don’t know my pace.  Still felt pretty hyper later, so I got in another run at the South Farm. Ran 5.5 miles at 6:32 with the last 2.5 the fastest. It was pretty chilly, so  I wore a shirt today, but it was off by the end! Meant to get there by 4 pm in case anybody showed up, but got there late. Saw both Steve and Kyle running together though. They ran 7 miles together, then Kyle got in another 10. That crazy joker went and got engaged this past week! Congrats to Kyle and his lady.

On Monday, ran a loop through MSU and beyond with Joseph. Along the way we crossed paths with different groups of MSU distance runners. Those jokers all seemed happy as clams as they ran.  One thing is for sure, whenever I am running behind a group of them, I always pick up my pace and it actually seems easier. Today was no exception. Anyway, we did 5.6 miles at 6:55, with our first 3 miles the slowest by far. It was a beautiful day to run! About 70°F and little to no wind. I was feeling good today! My spirits were slightly dampened later, however, after I dropped my Garmin forerunner 405 on the floor and the screen went blank!!!! @#$@ It only dropped about 2 feet, but anyway. I tried all the recommended methods I could find online to restart it, even called the Garmin folks. They suggested that I buy a new one! This was a pretty good watch, but I did have some problems with it. This model was controlled by applying pressure to the bezel (outer ring). Works ok when dry, but get sweat on it, and it did not work until after it was dry. In Mississippi, it gets pretty warm and humid, so that was a problem.

Tuesday, we just ran an out and back 4.9 mile route out here in Sessums. Another spectacular day!! We were 17:30 out, then picked it up and ran back at 15:01.  Not bad.

Wednesday, we again ran through the MSU campus and headed toward the quite hilly University Estates. Since I  don’t have a functioning Garmin watch at the moment, I don’t know our pace. The campus was almost deserted today, with most students having already left for Thanksgiving. Joseph wore his Kinvarras today, and seemed to be feeling spry. He took off ahead of me and I just barely kept him in sight. At about 3 miles, I picked it up, and he slowed down. We ran the rest of the way together, with the last couple at a much faster pace. I was wearing some Brooks shoes today and am starting to really like them.

No running on Thanksgiving. Instead went over with Audrey Sheridan to hang out with her parents on their sweet land over near Hamilton, AL. They have a beautiful piece of property with rocky slopes and creeks crisscrossing the area. Her mom, Renee, is an artist, and she also has a small studio on the property.

Renee and Audrey Sheridan

Her dad Greg spends much of his time there keeping up the property. The weather was incredible with temps in the 70’s. We ate a Thanksgiving dinner of sorts outside on a makeshift table made by placing a piece of wood on top of two sawhorses! We had turkey, potatoes, dressing, beans, salad, and some tasty fudge for desert!

Greg and Renee Sheridan, and me (Audrey took the picture so is not in it)


The rocky creeks running through the property were amazing and in some places the creek was bordered by rock walls. We had plenty of time to roam the area both before and after lunch.

nice view of a creek

me hanging from a rock formation beside the main creek

The dogs also had a great time and spent their time running through the woods and playing in the creek.

Audrey’s dogs Maggie and Bina

Friday, got in a 5 mile run at the South Farm. Still no Garmin, but ran about 7 minute per mile pace. Got an upper body workout (a quick  one) when I got home. Today was again nice, shorts weather. But, a cold front was on its way. Got up early the next morning for a run with the Boardtown Running Club and it was about 30° out!! Had not been out there since August. What a difference! Both Joseph and I wore running tights today.  Not a big crowd, but quite a few considering it was a holiday week. Two routes were mapped for the day, a 15 mile route and an 8.7 mile route. We opted for the 8.7 distance today. Will likely do about 12 next time as we get back into it. It was chilly! We pretty ran by ourselves today once we got going and based on time and distance, we averaged 6:53 per mile. Not bad.

Footlocker’s South regional cross country championships were held today in South Carolina. Joseph had planned on doing this race, but decided that he will wait until next year. Starkville’s Kate Mattox  ran in the 13-14 girls division, and placed 1st place with her time of 11:00 flat in the 3000m race! Congrats to Kate for another awesome race!  See the full girls 13-14 results at:  Our friend Jon Luke Watts from Columbia, MS also ran and had a good day and ran a 15:53 5k! Congrats!

Tomorrow, we  plan on being at the South Farm at 3 pm, if anybody wants to join us.


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