Monday, July 30, 2012

(7/30-8/5): Welcoming New Members; Manasquan Reservoir; Haskell Winnings!

Welcome New Members
We used to welcome all new members, but that just got overwhelming, or we got lazy, or both.  But the summer months find us with more time on our hands, and with a nice influx the past few weeks, let's welcome some new members to the Gold and Black Attack!
We'll start with the speedy couple of Brandi and Craig Donnelly.  Brandi, a Texas native, has run an impressive 18:52 for 5k; her husband, Craig, has solid 70:55 (half marathon) and 14:29 (5k) PRs under his belt.  Speaking of fast half marathons, let's welcome Rich Angelillo, a 71:30 half marathoner who is back to Edison, his hometown, for graduate school!  A paragraph with "fast" should also probably include Rider superstar Chelsea Callan.  With PRs of 5:01 and 18:37, she hopes to race at club nationals this fall and break 5:00 this spring!  Another new member to the women's team is Erika Meling, a recent graduate of Rutgers who ran at Lock Haven.  Erika placed 8th at the 2006 Meet of Champions in 18:44 for West Morris Central; now, she is becoming a personal trainer!  Krissy Suckow ran qualified and run the Boston Marathon and should also make an awesome addition to the crew!
We also want to welcome some new Rutgers students to the GSTC-Rutgers group: Natalie Wright is a 10k/half marathoner; Erin Lacosta is a hurdler from Somerville HS; David Fett is a sophomore pharmacy student with some sweet PRs from high school (4:41/10:30); Jason Gulya is a 3:07 marathoner and grad student in English and, funny enough, almost taught another GSTC'er (senior Zach Speigel) in a summer class; Josh Kim is joining with hopes to improve his 10k time.
Have we introduced Mike Gurzo yet?  If not, he gets his own paragraph.  Any guy who builds drawbridges, tells his boss he doesn't work on Fridays, kayaks the Raritan River frequently, and will easily challenge Steve Bonica forthe Facial Hair Award in 2012 is a man worth knowing.
The master's team continues to build, as we welcome Marty Doherty and Eric Davis.  Marty is 49 and breaks 19:00 with ease; he also has a 5:03 mile under is belt at age 44 (Ridgewood Run).  Eric, a Highland Park xc/track coach, ran 18:55 in June's Qasim & Ahad 5K.  Speaking of sub-19:00 masters runners, props to GSCT veteran Kenny Huryk for ANOTHER all-time best of 18:24.  What is in that Spotswood water, anyway?
34 Enjoy Manasquan Reservoir LR, Haskell
You missed a good one if you missed yesterday's long run down at the Manasquan Reservoir!   Thirty-four GSTC'ers showed up to enjoy the shaded, 5.1 mile trail loop.  Bagels, Gatorades, some new members, and even newly-arrived team shirts were all on the scene; check out the attached picture, and please, don't get too scared of the super-buff ladies flexing on the bottom row.
Props to Sara Douma and Lindsey Lambert who, as the attached picture shows, were big winners at the Haskell.  Way to show up all the "experts" and the guy's team, ladies!  It may come to no surprise that both the horse "Cactus Chuck" and the jockey "Decarlo" both finished in dead last...perhaps a foreshadowing of that impending fall season.
Video for Elite Club Application
We are finally finishing the GSTC Elite Development Club Application this week, and if you missed it on Facebook, here is the video that will accompany it:
Get the Gorilla 5k Homework
Not everyone has done their homework for our October event/fundraiser, so here's another quick reminder.  Our events are only successful because we work hard to make them so!
1. Please add people to the Get the Gorilla Facebook Group. Then, invite them to the event! Word of mouth is powerful!
2. Post things on GtG FB Group.
3. Help us FLYER cars at two events: Liberty Waterfront Half (9/23) and Jimmy D 5k (9/2). Holla at me if you can!
4. Post website ( on FB and encourage friends to come run it!!
5. Of course.....sign up and run yourself! GSTC members with the big discount:
Next Board Meeting: Tuesday, 8/7, After Team Run 
Hey- we don't like meetings either, but we have a lot to talk about and decide on.  Skinny Vinny's pizzeria in New Brunswick at 7:45; the team run starts at 6:15 at Buccleuch Park.  New uniforms, new team gear, big team race on October 7th, USATF-NJ Grand Prix fall season coming up, AND our proposed open schedule for 2013 that the USATF-NJ requested us to design....we'd like your input on all such decisions!
GSTC Weekly Trivia
In April of 2011, Jeff Perrella won the first major road race for the Garden State Track Club, dominating the Penn Relays Distance Classic.  You can see his triumphant entrance into the famed Franklin Field stadium here:
Question:  Which of the following actually happened that day in club history?  See far below for answer!
A.  Five runners got parking tickets,
B.  Jeff ran the race with a GSTC woman's uniform,
C.  Jeff took two wrong turns during the race,
D.  Tim Morgan told a story in under sixty seconds
Quotes of the Week
"In my world, there are no deal breakers."  -James Lothian, discussing women dating scenarios at Monmouth race track
"Monmouth Park can now afford roughly 100 packs of sillybandz thanks to my contributions today."  -Chris Heibell, FB post, regarding his fine performances on his day at the horse track with the GSTC.  (Editor's note: thankfully, he's a better runner than gambler)
"Its' only right to keep on breaking them."  -Aaron Lucas, GSTC record holder in HJ (6'8") and LJ (24'1"), on FB thread regarding new club record holders
"This is how I read the email: I 'control f' my name.  If my name isn't in there, I don't read it."  -Jeff Perrella, showing his humble process when reading the GSTC weekly email
"Ddddddddddddddddddddddddaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaammmmmmmmmmmmnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnnn"    -Dan Teichmann, via text, in response to hearing mile PR (5:01) of newest member of GSTC women's team Chelsea Callan. 
"Down in South Jersey, people don't even know what town they live in.  You ask them their hometown, and they tell you the name of their apartment complex."  -Adin Mickle, during Monday Philly run, talking about the "Pineys" down in the Pine Barrons.
"As the GSTC self-appointed social chairman I want to put the idea out there of going to a Yankee game as a group on Tuesday August 14th 7pm vs. the Rangers. I figure I would buy the tickets and get them on stub hub together and you could just give me cash at the game. I found bleacher and upper deck tickets for under 20 bucks, some under 10. Respond to this if it is something you want to do and a preference as far as seats (cheapest, bleacher, or upper deck are the options for your preference)."  -Ken Goglas, FB post on GSTC group page
"Me too, besides the whole glass bottle-almost-taking-out-my-nuts part."  -Woody Kongsamut, in a text agreeing that he enjoyed the last Morristown Wednesday team run--except for a piece of flying road debris that, truly, almost made him infertile.
"Did the longest run I've ever done today. 10.2 miles… also the longest amount of time running…1 hr 33 min. My tolerance for all this running is improving."  -Sara Douma, FB post, bout today's team run at Manasquan Reservoir
"Alright tough guy igmore my calls, but I represented GSTC well in Westfield, 18:21 official, and interview with the mayor with my connections in which I gave a shout out to GSTC and I have talked to like a handful of people about the club, more than Zak has done in Westfield."  -Tyler Foss, 1:56 half miler, in a text upset that his phone call wasn't the world's top priority after his Pizza Run in Westfield race.  We also liked the cheap shot at his fellow half miler and former Westfield Running Company employee Zak Martins, a very serious candidate for the 2012 Tim Morgan Award right now.
"Enjoyed a great run this morning in the woods with some new friends!" -Brandi Donnelly, FB post, regarding Sunday's team run
"Thank you for your help and support this past year. You pushed me when I needed it while giving me the support I needed being so new to the sport, and I sincerely thank you for your guidance."  -Matthieu Hertilus, GSTC sprinter, who recently accepted a job in Texas.  A class act--we will miss him
"I'm just lucky I can move around a little bit."  -52 year old Jeremy Stratton, after Tuesday's NB run.  He may feel old, but breaking 18:00 this past spring at 52 is moving more than a little bit, wethinks.
Tim Morgan Award
We love the guy, but seven people in the van await good ol' Mike Anis for a solid five minutes as he stumbles in late to van departure Sunday morning.  Can't blame the traffic when you live in the next town over! 
Team Runs: Better Than Flying Solo! 
Monday: 5:30 @ Philadelphia's Wissahickon Trail (660 West Rittenhouse St., Philadelphia, PA 19144) w/ Adin, Chuck, Peter, and Shawn. Hit up Chuck or Adin if you want in!
Tuesday 6:15 @ Buccleuch Park (parking lot near bathrooms)
Wednesday 6:15 @ Morristown Running Company (park in Wells Fargo lot after 5:00 for free)
Wednesday Women's 7pm track workout  (email for details)
Thursday 6:15 @ Buccleuch Park (parking lot near bathrooms)
Thursday 6:00 @ Holmdel Park's gazebo/main building (email
Friday 9:30am @ Boyd Park (New Brunswick- parking lot left of Rutgers bathrooms)
Sunday: 9:00am LONG RUN AT SADDLE RIVER PARK!  Meet here: 32 Franklin Avenue Saddle Brook, NJ
This Week in Training
As always, please check the Sprint Squad FB group page!
We continue the build this week.  Again, add on as you feel you can handle.  If you're not ready to add on, you can cut back or repeat alst week's mileage.  As your mileage progresses, stick to the pattern of comfortable running, hill sprints on two nonconsecutive days, a weekly long run, and a mid-week medium run of about 75% of your long run.
It's a good idea to work some uptempo stuff into your work each week.  I recommend making the medium run a pretty high end effort.  So as I mentioned last week, you should be able to train comfortably in the range between Daniels' E pace and M pace.  The medium run should be close to the M pace for most of the run - that's a high quality aerobic effort for a long duration.  Still keep away from T pace for now, but you can work in some fartlek work into some of your distance runs that approach T pace.  You're still best off staying on the slow side of this for now.  You can play with the pace, the length of the pickups, the lengths of the recovery intervals, etc.  But try to keep the recovery runs in between pickups at a fairly honest pace.
So a sample would be this:
60 miles:
M - 8mi + hill sprints
T - 7 mi that includes 5 miles of 2:00on/3:00off
W - 10miles moderate
Th - super easy 6 + strides
F - 8 mi + hill sprints
Sat - 8 miles + strides
Sun - 13
Tailor the lengths of runs to suit your mileage.  If you're going over 70, you may want to add in some doubles.

Trivia Answer: (B).  Jeff raced in a woman's uniform--by accident.  Uniforms were distributed hastily that morning, and no one realized the "small" was a woman's small.  Watch the race and you'll notice just how tight the uniform actually is; it isn't quite a training bra on him, but getting quite close.  (editor's note: we've gotten a little better with equipment distribution, but as the women's team continues to remind us: not that much better)

Sunday, July 22, 2012

(7/23-29): USATF-NJ 5k XC Preview; Goodbye, Grote

Men's Preview: Can Perrella Defend His Title?
XC Opener To Be First Indicator of GSTC's Club Nationals Team in December
Flemington- For a second year in a row, Deer Path Park will be the host of the USATF-NJ 5k Cross Country Championships.  And, for the second year in a row, the Garden State Track Club will unleash an unparalleled display of both talent and depth in the fall opener.  Last year, the men's team finished 1st, 2nd, 4th, 5th, and 9th.  The 2008-2010 5k cross country champions, RVRR, were third in 2011.  Team scores here:
Deer Path Park is a two-loop race mostly on grass.  There is a moderate hill near the finish of each lap; last year, the base of the hill was a swamp of mud, slowing times down considerably.   
While it is the early season opener, the race will be the first step in figuring out a top seven to send to Kentucky's club xc national championships.  Last year's top five at nationals did, in fact, finish in the top nine at the 5k xc race: Jeff Perrella, Chris Heibell, Adin Mickle, Mike Anis, and Mike Dixon.  However, GSTC leadership has stated it will send two teams if, in fact, there are two national caliber teams that emerge by December 8th.  Unlike last year, all Gold & Black half milers will spike up and compete, adding even more muscle to the already stacked distance roster.
In August, Chuck and men's captain Jeff Perrella will contact all runners individually about racing availability.  From there, equally talented teams will be created, and we shall see which teams....and individuals....prevail! 
2011 Results/ GSTC Top Performances @ DPP
1.   15:28  Jeff Perrella 
2.   15:31  Chris Heibell
3.   15:53  Adin Mickle
4.   16:02  Mike Dixon
6.   16:25  Anthony Harris
7.   16:28  James Grimes
8.   16:33  Ashwin Anantharaman
9.   16:37  Mike Anis
10. 16:38  Tim Morgan
12. 16:52  Steve Geiger
13. 16:53  Chuck Schneekloth
17. 17:27  Dan Teichmann
18. 17:29  Zach Speigel
23. 17:47  Mike Obsuth 
24. 17:48  Alex Fowlie
27. 18:04  Kyle Flyer
28. 18:05  Robert Klink
29. 18:05  Zak Martins
35. 18:24  Edsel Flores
37. 18:39  Wismith Francois
45. 19:08  David Grau
52. 19:31  Norbert Kuter
54. 19:36 Tyler Foss
59. 19:47 Mark Parisen
76. 20:16 Nick Waclawski
104. 21:40 Corey Smith
128  22:53 Neil Verano
130  22:59 Thomas Segear
138  23:43 Stefan Symbleme
164  25:08 William Herring
Women's Preview:  The Heat is On
Every Race Counts as WIG Hold 2 Point Lead Over Defending Champ RVRR
Flemington- In 2011, the now defunct Running Company won the USATF-NJ Cross Country 5k Championships, scoring 32 points.  Second was RVRR, third was Sneaker Factory, and fourth...yes, fourth place was the GSTC.  And, believe it or not, the Women in Gold dipped into the sprinter pool to complete a full team, as both Quanisha Booker and Shay Warren hopped in to help field a full scoring team.
The 2012 cross country team will return the top three women who helped win the USATF-NJ road 5k championship in late May: Cheyenne Ogletree, Alyssa Douma, and Jamie Liberti.  The team's #4, Kristin Cupido, will race, but will be making up for lost time after a broken toe and hand.  Luckily, the ladies have a strong group to possibly fill in Cupido's spot: Karen Autero, Nicole Corre, Meghan Decarlo, Erin Higgins, Erika Meling, Lindsey Lambert, Courtney Stanton,  and Danielle Stanton.
An interesting twist might be a possible b team that develops from this talented group.  Last year's top returning team, RVRR, had their #5 girl run 24:13; every GSTC women above has run well under 22:00.  While it was a challenging 5k course, and while this was not their best five, all eyes will be on the GSTC vs RVRR showdown on Saturday, September 8.
It is also important to note that, unlike road races, five women score in cross country-- not four.  Also, cross country races are weighed heavier in team scoring: first place gets 12 points, not 10, etc.
Here is the start of last year's race:
2011 Results/ GSTC Top Performances @ DPP
105.  21:41  Claire Tafelski
140.  23:49  Cathy Stutzman
147.  24:07  Liz Licorish
160.  24:41  Quanisha Booker
194.  27:56  Shay Warren
208.  29:17  Prudence Jones
Goodbye, Grote
Today, thirty-six runners joined in on Ryan Grote's final NJ run, yet not many know exactly who this guy is.  As we send him off, let's recognize just how much he's done for New Jersey and the sport of running, as it's probably a lot more than you might realize. 
Born in Wisconsin, he moved to Seattle before settling in Jersey his junior year in high school. Coached at Bernards HS by Mark Wetmore (you know- that guy who wins tons of NCAA titles now at Colorado- yeah, that guy), he became an All-American in cross country at University of Washington and in track for University of Portland.  He helped U-Dub win their ONLY Pac-10 xc title years ago, along with running a 2:17 marathon in college.  Yeah, 2:17.  That was no error.
Upon returning home from college, he opened up Runner's Pace running store in Bedminster.  This allowed him to create an elite racing team with adidas and, while doing so, founded the "River Road Run" and the many loops we follow there today.

His Grote Poll, a no-nonsense ranking of top cross country teams every year, is one of the most discussed running websites.  Indeed, it was truly the first website for competitive runners, leading to the creation of, today's primary source of running information.  Check it out:

Grote had the fastest time in America for the ten mile race, and won both the AC and Philly Marathons in 1998.  He coached two state champions, one of them winning three Meet of Champions titles.

Now, he is making a running comeback after six years of no racing.  He's put in thirty straight weeks of 100 miles or more.  But, sadly for us all, he is taking his comeback out to Wisco- where his parents reside.  That said, perhaps it is fitting that he retires from the GSTC as the only undefeated member; in May, weeks after joining the GSTC, won the hilly Superhero Half in 71:19.


Grote Quotes From Email Before Final Run at Jockey Hollow

"I have surely put in more time and miles in these woods than any human or animal in history and also pooped in the toilet there (usually the regular one, not the handi-crapper) more than anybody."

"I will run 2-hours or more, maybe do 2 loops, then add on, go beat up on some of the mountain bike sissyboys in Lewis Morris, etc."

"Many of you have put in a few miles here with me...if you haven't, now is the chance.  For some of you, perhaps new-ish to the area, chance to run with me, see a great spot to run and also meet the club that you SHOULD be a member of...ahem."


This Week's GSTC Trivia Question

Question: Who was the first member of the GSTC to score points at a USATF national championship event? (answer at bottom of email)

A:  Mike Anis (steeplechase)

B.  Jeff Perrella (10,000m)

C.  Tim Morgan (3k racewalk)

D.  Chris Heibell (1500m)

E.  Ben Dover (shot put)


Club Record: 37 Runners at Today's LR

Heck yeah- check out the attached pictures- a club record 37 people attended today's long run at Jockey Hollow.  Next week let's go for forty at the Manasquan Reservoir!  And fun at the Haskell (biggest horse racing day of the year at Monmouth Park) afterward!!


QOTW...You've Waited All Week for It

"You tagged me as tim morgan in one of those pics...Should i be insulted?"  -Andrew Capizzi: FB message

 "For style points I can roll up in a kayak.  But perhaps that would scare away the new girl."  -Mike Gurzo: text about Friday morning run (with new member, Erika) that meets by Rutgers boat house.  (Editor's note: he owns a kayak, and we learned later he has kayaked to this spot before)

"Oh no, I was outta school by then.  I'm 25 Chuck, I'm an OLD man.  Wait, I mean, sorry...."  -Shawn Deandrea, at Monday Philly run, realizing 25 really isn't that old.  You jerk. 

"I want to go to Kentucky, and run the fastest 10k of my life.  I know that making that happen will take serious dedication, careful attention to my health and avoiding injuries, and as aforementioned, focus on the penultimate goal."  -Mike Anis: emal re: club national

"That blonde guy over there looks like he's from a super hero movie.  Like he's a villian from Spiderman!"  -Cheyenne Ogletree about Ryan Grote.  Yeah, many opponents have similar fears of him, as well!

"I'll be there early."  -Tim Morgan (Editor's note: he made it by one minute)

"Got some new shoes.  Now I'm ready for tomorrow's run!"  -Kyle Flyer: text re: Wednesday Morristown run

"At my last job, I just had to make sure no one parked in this one big spot near the (movie) set.  For 14 hours straight.  It helped when a car full of girls flashed me at like 3 in the morning.  It worked better than a 5 Hour Energy Drink."  -Adin Mickle: discussion during Monday Philly run

"What do you need me for?  Beard power?"  -Mike Anis: phone call regarding a team run

"That was the last time I do the racewalk.  I can't believe I even did it once, for that matter."  -Tim Morgan, talking about the infamous racewalk in 2012 USATF-NJ Track and Field Championships 

"No- they are YOUR enemies.  Everyone loves me."  -Ken Goglas, making sure just Chuck is the scapegoat for all club issues


Team Runs...It's Better Than Runnin' Alone!

Monday:  5:30 @ Philadelphia's Wissahickon Trail (660 West Rittenhouse St., Philadelphia, PA 19144) w/ Adin, Chuck, Peter, and Shawn.  Hit up Chuck or Adin if you want in!
Tuesday 6:15 @ Buccleuch Park (parking lot near bathrooms)
Wednesday 6:15 @ Morristown Running Company
Wednesday Women's 7pm workout @ Franklin Middle School/Ridgewood (email for details)
Thursday 6:15 @ Buccleuch Park (parking lot near bathrooms)
Thursday 6:00 @ Holmdel Park's gazebo/main building (email
Friday 9:30am @ Boyd Park (New Brunswick- parking lot left of Rutgers bathrooms)
Sunday: LONG RUN AT MANASQUAN RESERVOIR @ 9:00am.  Going to watch the Haskell afterward!!!!


Tim Morgan Award

Conversation During Friday's Team Run

Unnamed GSTC runner: Hey Tim, how many miles did you run yesterday?

Tim Morgan:  I ran ten miles--it was a good day!

Unnamed GSTC runner:  Wow- how many does that put you in the week, being that it's Friday?

Tim Morgan: (after long pause) Thirteen.


This Week in Training

Sprinters/Half Miler/Hurdlers: Please check Sprint Squad Group for instructions

Distance Runners

Time to take a few minutes to think about how the week has gone and where to go from here.  Again, if it was a tough week, you should think about repeating your mileage or even backing down a bit.  If you felt good or great, step up!  I wouldn't go up more than 10 miles from one week to the next.  Remember that the medium run on Wed/Thu and the long run on Sunday are the cornerstones of an effective build.  Do strides the other days, and try to get some hill sprints in on two nonconsecutive days (Tuesday-Friday is a good combo).  Remember you want them to be no longer than 10sec in duration, all-out, on the steepest hill you can find.  You may want to do a few strides before you begin.

It's also a good time to get in some quality fartlek work.  Start with an easy breakdown of hard/easy, like 1:30 on/3:30 off.  There shouldn't be more than 1:00 per mile difference in pace between pickup and recovery - so it's better to go 6:30/7:00 than it is to go 6:00/7:45.  You don't want it to feel like a continuous interval workout that you would do on the track.  I don't recommend you do this on the same day as the hill sprints, and you shouldn't really feel a burn on these - it should still be quality aerobic work.  So I would stay well short of threshold pace on the pickups.  

Build smart and strong!  

Trivia Answer

A- Mike Anis.  The 3k steeple was one of the first finals on the track on Friday night, July 8 2011, at club nationals.  Jeff Perrella was ready to run the 10k, but meet managemnt canceled it due to heavy rains....making Anis forever etched in the hearts and record books of the GSTC.  Beard power!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

(7/16-7/22): The Official 2012 Get the Gorilla 5k Edition!

1.0  Sunday, October 7th: The Schedule
9:30-    Get the Gorilla 5k Open Race
10:30-  #15 GSTC vs #10 CPTC Elite Dual Meet (Women 5k/ Men 8k)*
11:15-  Costume Parade
11:30-  Awards Ceremony
*For the first time, other nationally ranked elite teams will be invited: #4 New York Athletic Club, #27 Greater Boston Track Club, #5 Boston Athletic Association, NJ/NY Track Club, Greater Philly TC, #16 Georgetown Running Company, #20 Manhattan Track Club, and #23 New Balance Boston.  Above rankings are based on last year's team results from USATF Club Nationals XC Championships in Seattle, WA.
All info is here:
2.0  GtG Prize Money
Elite Men and Women: $200 (1st), $150 (2nd), $100 (3rd)
Costume Contest*: $200 (1st), $150 (2nd), $100 (3rd)
Centipede Contest*: $200 (1st), $150 (2nd), $100 (3rd)
*Judges decide on winners during costume contest, then announce winners at Awards Ceremony.  Both are NOT decided by time!
3.  GSTC Members: How You Can Help
How you can help us promote our big yeary fall event?
1.  Please add people to the Get the Gorilla Facebook Group.  Then, invite them to the event!  Word of mouth is powerful!
2.  Post things on GtG FB Group.
3.  Help us FLYER cars at two events: Westfield Pizza 5k (7/25) and Jimmy D 5k (9/2).  Holla at me if you can!
4.  Post website ( on FB and encourage friends to come run it!!
5.  Of course.....sign up and run yourself! GSTC members with the big discount:
4.0  CPTC vs GSTC: Elite Dual Meet
Central Park Track Club has won back-to-back club national championships in track and field, and they ran the table last year against Garden State Track Club's elite men and women in the 2011 GtG Elite Dual Meet.
However, 2012 is a new year, and things should be VERY close this year.  In an old-school dual meet, NY's best club will go head-to-head with NJ's best club where time means nothing--it's all about place.  The top five runners place, and the top seven runners displace; add up the places of each team's top 5 finishers, and the lowest score wins.
Not only will the WIG and MIG challenge hard for the team trophies, but two other changes are in store for America's only elite dual meet.  First, it will be held AFTER the conclusion of the open race---enabling spectators and open 5k participants to enjoy the race from start to finish.  Second, myriad other elite East Coast clubs have been invited, making the elite race that much more exciting!
This Week's Race Results
No one is really throwing it down right now, but we got wind of two exciting results: Wilfredo Benitiz, a Rutgers-GSTC member, cracked 18:00 for the first time ever (17:58) today.......and former Rowan standout Steve Mennit, who's been fighting injury for months, just cranked 8.5 miles at 5:45 pace during a relay this weekend.  Solid results, gentlemen....let's keep it rolling through the summer!
Tim Morgan Award
1.  We talked to Mike Anis last night about making sure Tim Morgan wasn't late to today's team long run.  What does Anis do?  Rolled up twelve minutes late, while 25 of us are waiting to get started.  (Editor's note: Morgan was 15 minutes early)

2.  On the highway to today's run, Tim Morgan blows past us on the the left lane.  He swerves to middle lane, then moments later, swerves back to the left lane.  Upon the third lane change, a state trooper begins tailing him.  For a solid three minutes, the GSTC van thought for SURE he was getting pulled over, as he had no idea the cop was behind him.  Classic.
Quotes of the Week
"I want to be the president of the cup."  -Jeff Perrella, 2011 and 2012 President's Cup Champion, talking about his plans to dominate NJ's premier road race every June
"I don't understand them.  Before I joined GSTC, I asked them often about joining their club.  They'd respond by talking about how to join other clubs.  It was like trying to join the Masons or something."  -Adin Mickle, GSTC's #3 man at nationals last year, talking about a southern Jersey club.  Little known fact: Adin only drinks MILK when he goes out to bars, his "Milkman" nickname.
"Good run at Holmdel- our team kicks ass!" -Mike Anis, post on GSTC Facebook page
"I love our team!!" -Alyssa Douma in response to Anis' post
"Violet!!"  -Chris Scheider, in response to the question, "What shade of red also means to abandon or isolate with little hope of rescue?"   (Editor's note: answer is maroon.  Also Editor's note: DARK?)
"CU soon hopin to get down under 18 5k...eager to be trained and be pushed."  -masters runner Eric Davis, via text, regarding his new GSTC membership
"Two of America's top athletes have come to terms and have a contractual agreement to team up for Road Relays III." -Tony Polite, via email, who has seemingly broken up with Jeff Perrella to team up with Chris Heibell for GSTC's February event, Road Relays.  Last year, Perrella was hurt and unable to perform his agreement with Mr. Polite. 
"Hey Chuck, it's Tuesday and still no email.  What am I supposed to read while at work?"  -Mike Obsuth, in a text message, who somehow had the team email in his junk folder.  Good to see the GSTC's weekly email is helping the American economy by inspiring employees to....not work. 
"Wow, this is a big group for a Sunday run. This club is really doing an awesome job.  Great to see."  -Rich Kenah, at Holmdel Park today, to the group.  For those that don't know, Kenah ran 1:43.38 for the bronze at the 1997 World Championships in the same race Wilson Kipketer set the 800m world record of 1:41.07. 
"I have put in enough miles in Jockey Hollow to circle the globe about 1.5 times.  36k.  For real."  -Ryan Grote, text message, when asked if he knew where Jockey Hollow trail was.  He explained his rationale, and sure enough....he is being for real.  Wow.
Broken Record
We just found out that not one, but TWO GSTC'ers- Kristin Cupido and Pat Lestrange- have broken toes.  We hope the toe gods leave this dear club alone, for goodness sake.
GSTC Record Run
32 people came to the Holmdel run this morning....see attached all-time club record!  Heibell came for the Great Adventure...Goglas has ruled this as NOT counting.  Sorry Heibell. 
This Week'sTeam Runs
Monday:  5:30 @ Philadelphia's Wissahickon Trail (660 West Rittenhouse St., Philadelphia, PA 19144) w/ Adin, Chuck, Peter, and Shawn.  Hit up Chuck or Adin if you want in!
Tuesday: 6:15 @ Buccleuch Park (New Brunswick)- meet at big gazebo near big parking lot! 
Wednesday: 6:15 @ Morristown Running Company (park in Wells Fargo parking lot- free after 5:00)
Wednesday: 7:00 track workout @Ben Franklin Middle School in Ridgewood
Thursday: 6:15 @ Buccleuch Park (New Brunswick)- meet at big gazebo near big parking lot!
Sunday:  8:30am LONG RUN @ Jockey Hollow.  Hit up Decarlo @ for more info
Jockey Hollow ----- GPS= N40degrees45.722ft.W074degrees32.559ft
From Interstate 287 South or North:
-Take Exit 30B (Bernardsville)
-At the traffic light, turn right onto Route 202 North
-Turn left at light for Tempe Wick Road (Route 646).
(Note that road has a different name on the right side, don't let this confuse you.)
-Continue on Tempe Wick Road for about another 1 ½ miles. The entrance to the Jockey Hollow unit of Morristown National Historical Park will be on your right.

This Week in Training
Sprinters - Check Facebook Sprint Squad Group's all there!
The build is on.  Hopefully each of you has a progression plan in mind.  Add mileage sensibly and in consideration of how you handled the mileage this past week.  If it was really tough, you may want to consider repeating last week's mileage or ever cutting it down a bit.  If it was really easy, you can add 8-10 miles.  It all depends.  It's only week 2, so you should be feeling pretty good.  There will be plenty of time for really hard work later, so this should largely be an investment of your time rather than your energy.  It's OK to open it up and roll a bit on the days where you're feeling good, but you shouldn't be hammering any of your runs.  You want quality aerobic effort.  You should feel pleasantly tired at the end.
So I'll repeat the sample weeks I posted last week.  Keep it flexible, but aim for a medium-length run of about 75-80% long run duration in the middle of the week, and of course the weekend long run.  I like to plan the medium run based on which day in the middle of the week has the best weather - doesn't matter if it's Tuesday, Wednesday, or Thursday, but you don't want the medium run and the long run to be too close together.  Wednesday or Thursday is the ideal.
You also want to be doing strides and hill sprints, if possible.  Ideally, you would do hill sprints on Tuesday and Friday, and strides on Monday and Thursday.  The hill sprints should be 8-10 seconds long, all out, on the steepest hill you can find.  Recovery must be complete in order to make these completely alactic.  The purpose of these is to train your top end by recruiting as many muscle fibers as possible.  If you keep them short in duration and the recovery intervals long, you will not generate any lactate at all.  Start with 3 or 4 your first time doing them and build to 8 or 10. 

Any questions, shoot me an e-mail -
M - 4 + 6x80m strides
T - 3 + 4x8-10s hill sprints
W - 4
Th - 4 + 6x80m strides
F - off
Sat - 4 + 4x8-10s hill sprints
Sun - 5

35 mpw:
M -5 + 6x80m strides
T -4 + 4x8-10s hill sprints
W - 7
Th -5 + 6x80m strides
F - off
Sat - 6 + 4x8-10s hill sprints
Sun -8

40 mpw:
M - 6 + 6x80m strides
T - 5 + 4x8-10s hill sprints
W - 7
Th - 6 + 6x80m strides
F - off
Sat -  6 + 4x8-10s hill sprints
Sun - 10

50 mpw:
M - 7 + 6x80m strides
T - 8 + 4x8-10s hill sprints
W - 9
Th - 8 + 6x80m strides
F - off
Sat 7 + 4x8-10s hill sprints
Sun - 11

Sunday, July 8, 2012

(July 9-July 15): The Official 2012 GSTC Fall Race Preview

2012 GSTC Racing Schedule
All GSTC members, slow or fast, big or small, and everyone in the middle, are encouraged to hop in the following race: 
9/8        USATF-NJ 5k Cross Country Championships (Saturday)
9/23      Liberty Waterfront Half Marathon: USATF-NJ Half Marathon Championships (Sunday)
10/7      *Get the Gorilla 5k (Sunday)
10/28    **USATF-NJ 8k Cross Country Championships (Sunday)
12/8       USATF Club Cross Country 10k National Championships (Saturday)
*see nearly completed website of our club's fall event here:
**winning team gets $500 for club nationals
Women's Fall XC Preview
GSTC Ladies Eye CPTC, a USATF-NJ Title, and the National XC Championships

During last year's dual meet with Central Park Track Club, the NYC orange and blue ran the table, sweeping the top six spots and blanking the Gold, 15-45. 
Oh, what a difference one year makes.
Former Rutgers standout Cheyenne Ogletree continues to be the ace, and finally, she has an incredibly talented group of teammates to fly along with her.  Taking a quick look at how the GSTC's top four stack up against Central Park TC, the WIG fall just short, 14-22.  Here is the dope sheet (results from 2011 GTG 5k; 2012 Rachel 5k):
1. 17:33  CPTC   Cat Beck
2. 18:29  CPTC   Christina Argueta
3. 18:30  GSTC   Cheyenne Ogletree
4. 18:37  GSTC   Alyssa Douma
5. 18:41  CPTC   Stephanie Herrick
6. 18:43  CPTC   Bevin Peters
7. 18:48  GSTC   Jamie Liberti
8. 19:34  GSTC   Kristin Cupido
However, enter new addition Lindsey Lambert.  A close friend and former teammate at LHU with Douma, her 5k best of 17:18 is a total game changer, swinging the score to an even tie, 18-18.  That said, the CPTC race is a classic dual meet that scores the top five, not the top four like USATF-NJ races.  Luckily, there are a few others who will help out Ogletree, Douma, Liberti, Lambert, and Cupido on October 7th.  These include Nicole Corre, Meghan Decarlo, Courtney Stanton, Danielle Stanton, Erin Higgins, Karen Auteri--to name a few.
Locking horns with the cross-river rival isn't the only entry on the menu, as the ladies are just two points ahead in the USATF-NJ Grand Prix Open Women's Team Championship.  This will be a tight team race, as defending champion RVRR is just two points behind; RVRR has won the open women's race four times over the past five years: 2011, 2010, 2009, and 2007.
For the first time in club history, the ladies will also bring a complete team of seven to the club cross country national championsips on December 8th in Lexington, Kentucky, which isa 6k race for women.
Can GSTC Men Beat CPTC and Crack Top 5 at Nationals?     
 Perrella, Poland, & Heibell Lead One of America's Deepest Club Teams This Fall
Three men will lead the Men in Gold this fall: Jeff Perrella (14:22), Tom Poland (14:27), and Chris Heibell (14:42).  All three are coming off outstanding spring seasons, and all three will play a huge role in the MIG's push to crack the elite top 5 at club nationals this fall.  From there, the team's depth makes it impossible to predict who else might be taking the trip to Kentucky.  And, if it's too hard to figure out, the GSTC may even bring field TWO teams to club nationals.
One would assume UCONN steepler and 2:29 marathoner Ken Goglas is deeply in the mix, especially after a vey solid spring.  Adin Mickle and Mike Anis, the returning #3 and #5 men, respectively, from the 2011 team that placed 15th in Seattle, return with good fitness.  Team hero, mascot, and professional Facebook poster Tim Morgan, owning a swift 14:40 PR, should be in the hunt, along with 2:32 marathoner Shawn Deandrea.      
But wait- there is more- much more.  A major question mark is half miler Tony Harris, who ran both 1:52.69 for 800m and 69:08 (5:33 pace) for 20k in the spring season.  How fast can he run a 10k?  Andrew Capizzi, a steeplechase standout from Ramapo, is also very fit and ready fot fall racing.  Brandon Smith, who ran 71:59 and 15:32 in a two week span, will be a major contender, as will miler Chris Behre (4:09), California transfer John Welsh (sub-15), and Rowan standout Stephen Mennitt (15:07).  The man with the hottest hand last fall, Ashwin Anantharaman, will be back, along with TCNJ star Rob Nihen (14:47) and 2:44 marathoner Steven Geiger
Current Princeton graduate student Peter Bolgert, who has run 3:49 and 24:41 over an 8k xc course, is so good he gets his own paragraph!
If healthy and available, James Grimes, Nicolai Naranjo, Robert Dennis, Brian Kopnicki, Taylor Burmeister, Ross Baldwin, and Colby Pines will all be major players.
We wish there was enough room to mention everyone else, including Rutgers students like Wilfredo Benitiz, old man runners like Alex Fowlie, half milers like Tyler Foss, and young pups like Edsel Flores, but alas- we are running out of room!  There are, however, there are several plots.
Fall Subplot #1: GSTC Masters' Team
The GSTC men will, most certainly, finally field a men's masters team this fall.  They need five, and currently they have three very solid guys: Jeremy Stratton, Ken Huryk, and William Herring.  There are several on the verge of joining, and once they do...and, the women are just two runners away, as well.  Let's make this happen!
Fall Subplot #2: Mid-Pack Smack Talk
Tensions are respectfully yet visibly rising on Facebook between three GSTC gentlemen: Steve Bonica, Ken Huryk, and Rob Decarlo.  At first it was just a two-man war between Bonica snd Decarlo, but after Huryk's fine race on July 4, he has entered into the fray.  Season-best 5ks this year are Decarlo's 18:32, Bonica's 18:43, and Huryk's 18:54.  We fully expect an all-out cage-match by year's end, although FB rumor has it they may be entering as a centipede in the GTG 5k. 
Fall Subplot #3: CPTC vs GSTC
Central Park Track Club just won their second consecutive club national championship in track and field this weekend.  Last year, they swept the men's and women's competition in the elite dual meet versus the GSTC at the Get the Gorilla 5k.  However, both men's and women's teams have muscled up greatly, which should lead to an exciting race on October 7. 
Fall Subplot #4: Can the GSTC Ladies Hold On?
As discussed last week, the WIG are just two points- or one win- in the lead in the open women's USATF-NJ Grand Prix Championships.  They have never won this title before, and they got three races to hold on: the xc 5k, half marathon, and xc 8k.  With defending champions RVRR close on their heels, it should be an exciting team race to follow.

July 4 Racing Results: Capizzi Sets CR, Huryk PRs
GSTC stud Andrew Capizzi had fun on July 1, setting a course record at the Fighting Fires 5k, winning by over a minute in 16:32.  Pretty sweet article (and you can make out his gold un in the far left of the picture), but we sure hope you can topple guys from towns like "Sugarload" and "Smallwood." 
Props to 46 year old Ken Huryk for an all-time PR of 18:54, finishing as the top master at the Milltown Firecracker 5k.  Nick Waclawski finished 10th in his age group, hitting the tape at 21:10.  REsults:
Team Runs: LR @ Holmdel + Great Adventure!
Tuesday  6:15 @ Buccleuch Park (parking lot near bathrooms)
Wednesday  6:15 @ Morristown Running Company
Wednesday  Womens pm workout @ Franklin Middle School/Ridgewood (email for details)
Thursday 6:15 @ Buccleuch Park (parking lot near bathrooms)
Thursday 6:00 @ Holmdel Park's gazebo/main building (email
Friday Women's workout @ Mahwah (
Sunday:  LONG RUN AT HOLMDEL @ 9:00 AT MAIN BUILDING.  Van leaves NB @ 8:15.
    For those interested, a group is going to Great Adventure afterward!!! (email for details)
This Week in Training: Time to Get Back at 'Em
Sprinters/Half Milers
Central Park TC just finished their spring season this weekend, and we are well rested and starting our 2012-2013 season this week.  By now, you should be boiling up inside, anxious to train, run, lift- anything!  Just remember- it is a looooooong season, so keep the big picture in mind.  The half milers will follow Tafelski's plan below at 35 miles per week. Sprinters, this week you should do six workouts: three in the weight room and three on the roads.  The lifting is just general fitness work: three sets, 12-15 reps per set of most olympic lifts.  Running-wise, let's get out for three easy ten minutes runs with 2-4 easy strides afterward.  Keep everything fun and low-intensity.
It's time to build again.  We're going to build base mileage for a number of weeks.  What follows is the basic format that our training weeks will follow during this basebuilding phase.  The big questions: How much to run?  At what pace?  So here goes...
How much to run?  Only you can say.  In order to figure this out, you need to sit down and think over the exact volume of running you were doing at your highest point in the last training cycle or two.  Whatever that is, add 8-10 miles, and that should be your goal peak mileage.  So if the most you ran in the last year was 50mpw, then it is reasonable to aim for 60.  Whatever it is, this is a soft goal.  By that, I mean that you may or may not reach it, depending on how your basebuilding progresses.  You may exceed your goal if you find that you're tolerating your goal mileage really well.  So it's important to not be too prescriptive here and map out every single day of the next two months of training. 

The most important thing is that you be consistent in your running and build intelligently toward your goal over the next 3-4 weeks.  I would say don't add more than 10 miles from one week to the next.  So if your goal is 60, you can aim to progress by running 35, 44, 52, 60.  If your goal is higher than that, you can build over 5-6 weeks rather than 4 weeks, or you can start at a higher mileage during week 1.  All of these variables are up to you to control based on how you feel while training.  The most important information to consider when building is how you feel during and after your runs.  If you start at 30 mpw and it's cake, then jump to 40 the next week.  If 30 is tough, then you can repeat the 30 mile week and increase later, or jump up to 35.  If you go from 30 miles one week to 35 the next and it feels easy, then go to 45 the following week. 

How fast to run?  Again, pay attention to how you're feeling.  It's hot right now, so you have to consider that.  I would use a Daniels table (or use the VDOT calculator at McMillan's website or - enter your best race performance from the spring, then reduce the VDOT by 3 or 4 because you're detrained a bit during your break.  You want to train between the E and M paces on most of your runs (stay away from T pace for now).  For most of you that is a 50-60 second range per mile.  That is a huge window in which to train.  I prefer that you start out each run slowly and work into it naturally as you get loose.  How slow is slow?  Again, only you can say.  It may vary significantly based on running surface, terrain, diet, sleep, and temperature/humidity.  That's why it's important to just go on feel. 

Beware basing your training off of data rather than information.  I see this a lot with Garmin owners, or with folks who know every half mile mark on every run.  They're constantly checking their watch to see if their running the arbitrary pace they selected prior to the run.  So if someone sets out to run their mileage at 7:00 pace, they're slavishly checking their watches all the time to see if they're meeting it.  The fallacy of this is that the conditions of a run can vary tremendously from day to day, so not all 7:00 miles are created equal.  You're not going to see Kenyans in Iten checking their Garmins.  Sometimes their runs are very very easy, and sometimes they run extremely hard.  It should always be about running a quality aerobic effort. 

So here's the basic plan - I'll give you a few sample training weeks.  All of these runs are quality aerobic efforts - that doesn't necessarily mean hard.  Faster is not always better.  Your job before you begin running is to sit down with pen and paper, choose a goal mileage to hit in the next 4-6 weeks, and map out your next week or two of running and what your ideal mileage progression toward your goal might look like.  If you have any questions or you'd like some input, e-mail me at  Several of you have done this already.  Let's get building!  Get excited!

M - 4
T - 3
W - 4
Th - 4
F - off
Sat - 4
Sun - 5

35 mpw:
M -5
T -4
W - 7
Th -5
F - off
Sat - 6
Sun -8

40 mpw:
M - 6
T - 5
W - 7
Th - 6
F - off
Sat -  6
Sun - 10

Sunday, July 1, 2012

(July 2-July 8): Summer Begins; The Official GSTC Spring Season Summary

Summer Is Here!
While the sprinters, half milers, and distance runners alike rest, rejuvenate, and marinate during the early summer,  what better time is there to recap a very exciting spring for the club?  But before we look back at the season that was, let's not overlook the lone result of the week:
Heibell Wins Three-Way Tie With a Scissors
Gurzo, Lothian Throw "Regretful" Paper on Wednesday Night Oly Trials Grand Prix Finale
New Brunswick: On Wednesday evening, twenty GSTC'ers congregated at Mike's Courtside to watch the Olympic Trials, along with playing the $1 buy-in Grand Prix.  The GP, a list of eight questions asking contestants to predict the place and time of the various events contested that evening, resulted in a three-way tie for first, as James Lothian, Mike Gurzo, and Chris Heibell all had 50 points by night's end.  Upon a lengthy team debate, it was decided the trio would decide the $18 jack-pot winner as gentlemen, using an approach that started during the great Han Dynasty (206bc), and continues to be supported throughout the world, including by American federal judge in Florida Gregory Presnell in a court ruling from 2006: rock-scissors-paper.
Indeed, the stakes were high.  For Gurzo and Lothian, both engineers, they find this kind of money under their pillow at night; however, they are both building a reputation and relationships as new members.  For Heibell, a GSTC veteran And recent college graduate, this was a paycheck, a jackpot, the lottery.  After all, he's been admiring a new plaid shirt at Anthropology, but he only gets allowance from his parents at month's end, so...all were excited at the opportunities that awaited.  Judge Jeff Perrella made the rules clear: play until there is one winner.
The first throw was anti-climatic, as each threw a different sign- resulting in a stalemate.  But the second throw was fascinating, as all three threw the statistically-least common (30%) throw: paper.  This built suspense for the third and final round of good ol'  "handy-fisty-shake", as both Lothian and Gurzo used faulty reverse psychology and threw down another paper.  Heibell, known for his crafty guile and matching outfits, threw down a scissors, and man...we have never seen a double-first-pump celebation like that one before, outside of maybe Jenk's boardwalk at 3am.  There were grumblings that this was his biggest win of the season, and we must say--we do agree.  Great job, Heibell.
For those that believe in foreshadowing, please note that Decarlo defeteated Bonica, and Heibell defeated Tony Polite and Perrella.  Just sayin'.
FINAL RESULTS OF GSTC GRAND PRIX:  1. Heibell (50 points), 2.  Gurzo, Lothian (50), 4.  Matt, Decarlo, Perrella (40), 7.  Leanne, Bonica, Harris (30), 10.  Corre, Sharon, Fowlie, Welsh, Chuck, Z-Mart (20), 16. O'Toole, Sarah, Piekarski (10).  DNS- Morgan ("You don't want me playing that game"), Foss (late).  Via email:  Walsh (30), Capizzi (30), Behre (20), Geiger (20).
Get the Gorilla 5k....October 7th!
The GSTC's fall race has it all: costume contest, elite race, centipedes, gorillas, bananas, kids' race....this is all you need to know:
TUESDAY - 6:15 @ Buccleuch Park's gazebo (beside parking lot/bathrooms)
WEDNESDAY - 6:15 @ Morristown Running Company
THURSDAY - 6:15 @ Buccleuch Park's gazebo
SUNDAY - 9:00am @ River Road
This will be updated soon, but a fun look at some highlights from parts of this year: 
Women's Distance: In a Tale of Two Seasons, the WIG Lead by Two Points
It took a while for the train to gather steam, but once it did...the GSTC ladies totally steamrolled over the USATF-NJ Grand Prix, yet now sit just two slim points ahead of RVRR for first place in the open women's division.
At the 20k and 5 Mile championships, opportunities were lost and the ladies settled for second at both races.  Carrying the team load these races were Kristin Cupido, Cheyenne Ogletree, Cathy Stutzman, and Meghan Decarlo; in both races, they were winning after the top three runners, but alas...the top four are scored.  The GSTC women were in a tough bind: they needed a #4 runner, and they needed it badly.
Karen Auteri, a former runner for TCNJ, stepped up big time in the razor close victory at the USATF-NJ 10k championships; Erin Higgins made the big difference in the 15k champs, running the best race she's ever run in gold and black to help lock down the team win there.
However, in the rubber match and final championship of the season, the USATF-NJ 5k championship at Run for Rachel 5k, was the first time the WIG were in full force, was total domination.  Jamie Liberti and Alyssa Douma, both in their GSTC debut, ran fabulously (18:48 and 18:37, respectively), resulting in a win by 3:30--or about 50 seconds per woman--impressive when considering the distance was just 5k. 
Despite the incredible finish, four races remain and many questions linger as the ladies cling to their delicate two-point lead.  What are those races and questions, you wonder?  Have week is the "Fall Preview."

Open Women's Standings (5 of 9 races completed)
46 points- Garden State Track Team "A"
44 points- Raritan Valley Road Runners "A"
30 points- Garmin Runners "A"
17 points- North Jersey Masters
15 points- Sneaker Factory "A"
Men's Sprints: 4x400 Quartet Steals Spring Show as PRs Abound
Things got off to a great start in the opener, as the 4x400 relay of Ricky Garcia, Mike Brito, Duval Sewer, and Tony Harris outmuscled Manhattan College on December 9, winning in 3:26.25.  This set the tone for a season of golds for the foursome, including big wins at Madison Square Garden and Penn Relays, although the club record came at the Swarthmore Last Chance with a 3:17.48 silver medal.  Thanks to such successes, the crew was invited- and raced- at one of the world's best meets: the adidas Diamond League Grand Prix in NYC, where the group finished 6th of 9 teams.
All four ran lifetime PRs by season's end: Garcia (48.5), Brito (48.8/52.97IH), Sewer (49.3), and Harris (48.7/1:52.69). 
The half-mile crew, after breaking the club record in the 4x800, went on to also set a plethora of lifetime bests: Zak Martins (2:00), Reggie James (1:59), Mark Parisen (2:00/54.52IH), Sewer (1:58i), Tyler Foss (1:58i), and Garcia (1:59i).
The sprint side saw equal success, as most of the most committed athletes saw huge PR breakthroughs: Alan Broussard (14.65/110HH), Ish Robbins (10.87), Arvid Pansanjan (22.58), and Daniel Brathwaite (50.76/22.74). 
The season ended on a huge team win, as the GSTC defeated the Shore AC to win the USATF-NJ Open Team Championship.  In addition, the men's fastest 4x400 time was the 5th best by any club in America.
Women's Sprints: Washington Qualifies for Olympic Trials
Asia Washington had a banner year, lowering her previous 400IH best from 56.90 to 56.78, qualifying her for the 2012 Olympic Trials in Eugene, Oregon.
Throughout the season, she set three club records in addition to the 400IH: the 100 (11.95), 200 (24.18), and 400 (54.71).  She also played an instrumental role in both the sprint medley and 4x200 relays at the Millrose Games.
Unfortunately, several of the other women sprinters battled injury most of the year.  Things did end on a good note, however, as Shay Warren, Haleigh Simon, Quanisha Booker, and Alexis Mbakwe teamed up to break the 4x400 club record at the Swarthmore Last Chance Invitational in mid-May.
Men's Distance: America's Deepest Club Team Close to 1-2 Finish
The men's distance team had a near flawless spring, racking up wins in all five USATF-NJ Grand Prix Championship races.  In fact, they went 1-2 in the first three races (20k, 15k, and 5k), but due to injuries and   track races, were unable to field "B" teams in the final two contests.  This sets the table for an interesting fall, as the B team will claw back from a six point deficit to bring the GSTC to an unprecedented 1-2 team sweep atop the state leader board. 

The mighty Tom Poland set the state on fire in the first two races, finishing 2nd at the 20k and winning the hilly, grueling Indian Trails15k in a course-record time.  Flanked by Adin Mickle, Ken Goglas, Shawn Deandrea, and Mark Del Monaco, the Men In Gold ran wild on the circuit, often filling the top ten spots with 7-8 guys.
Perhaps the greatest display of depth came in the USATF-NJ 5k Championships, wheres the GSTC finished 1st, 2nd, and 4th--just missing out on the clean sweep of the team podium.  Hard to believe, but true:  This was the first race of team captain Jeff Perrella, who then went on with Tim Morgan, Edsel Flores, Goglas, Mike Anis, and Dan Teichmann to capture the final team title, the USATF-NJ 10k race, averaging 33:21/man in sweltering conditions.  Two weeks prior, the MIG flashed yet another different look, with Andrew Capizzi, Goglas, Ashwin Anantharaman, Anis, and Chuck Schneekloth finishing 5th, 7th, 9th, 10th, and 11th to lock down the dubya at the Our House USATF-NJ 5 Mile Championship.
Throughout the season, the Gold have picked up some of the best male runners in the tri-state area, all of whom have yet to race in a USATF championshp yet.  Who are they?  All in due time...just wait for next weekend's fall preview.

Open Men's Standings (5 of 9 races completed)
50- Garden State Track Club "A"
30- Sneaker Factory "A"
27- Raritan Valley Road Runners "A"
24- Garden State Track Club "B"
15- Clifton RR "A"
(we are on week three of three-week break): Take 3 weeks of downtime to recharge the batteries.  In those 3 weeks you should stay active, but that doesn't necessarily mean you have to run - walk, hike, ride a bike, swim, play other sports.  Each week, get out for 2-3 easy runs of 2-3 miles.  The purpose of these runs is to keep your muscles, tendons etc in good working order and prevent atrophy of inactivity during your break time.  That way, when the time comes to get it going again, you are met with much less muscle soreness and you can resume normal training and build mileage faster.  Enjoy the downtime, forget about training for awhile so you can come back to training in mid-July hungry and fresh!

This is your last full week off without running, but doing cross training like biking, swimming, etc. is great!  However, be smart.  It sounds like Christian broke some bones playing football; that is what NOT to do during your time-off.  Sure, play hoops- but not all-out, full-court press hoops.  Exercise and have fun, but remember: one sprain and you're starting off 2012-2013 in a bad way.  Be smart, relax, enjoy, and read a book!  Next week, we start slowly grinding the axe, and with club nationals being at Icahn in 2013.....we race until early July next year...that's a LONG season, my friends.  Enjoy the mental and physical break while you can.