Wanted: Energetic Volunteer Coordinator

As you know, FLRC is an all-volunteer organization, and after the retirement of a long-time member, we’re looking for a new volunteer coordinator. This position spent last year in limbo along with our pandemic-hampered race schedule, so it’s ripe for reinvention in 2021. You’d be perfect for the role of volunteer coordinator if you’re outgoing, organized, and enthused about FLRC. Core tasks involve collaborating with race directors to line up volunteers, recruiting new volunteers, and helping to build ways to track volunteers and their efforts so we can acknowledge and reward them at the Annual Picnic. For those early in their careers (hint, hint), this position will be great for community networking, will enhance your resumé, and could be a source of recommendations. Contact Adam Engst (ace@tidbits.com) if you’re interested.

FLRC Footnotes for February 2021

January may have seemed quiet, but quite a bit has been happening behind the scenes:

  • We had a race! The Super Frosty Loomis snowshoe race went off without a hitch.
  • The FLRC Challenge has begun! Can you complete all ten courses in 2021?
  • Various FLRC Board committees have been working on new club policies.
  • Want to get more involved with FLRC? We need a new Volunteer Coordinator.
  • A few FLRC members have been racing the snowshoe circuit.

On to the particulars!

36 masked runners descend on the Super Frosty Loomis snowshoe race

Our last outdoor race of 2020 was the Super Frosty Loomis snowshoe race, so it was particularly pleasing for it to be our first race back since the pandemic hit. Kudos to race directors Dave Kania and Eric Sambolec for putting on an event that felt normal while adhering to FLRC’s COVID-19 Race Safety Precautions. The conditions were ideal, with sun and temperatures in the 20s for 11 runners in the 5K and 25 in the 10K. In the 5K, newcomer Michela Meister finished first with a time of 37:28, beating Eileen Randall’s second-place finish in 41:10. In the 10K, Eric Sambolec continued his dominance, notching his sixth straight win with a time of 50:59, outpacing Kurt Huebner’s 52:07 by over a minute. On the women’s side, Amelia Kaufman took home first place for the third year in a row with a time of 1:05:13, coming in comfortably ahead of Jenny Selig’s 1:12:02 for second place. Who will step up next year to provide some competition for Eric and Amelia?

The FLRC Challenge has begun! Are you ready to challenge yourself?

Has it been hard to find a focus for your running this year? To help, we’ve launched the FLRC Challenge, a series of ten open-course races that you can run anytime you want, as many times as you want, throughout the rest of 2021. Half of the courses are road, half are trail, and they range in distance from 1 mile to the half marathon. Run, hike, or walk them all to win the coveted FLRC Challenge medal! All profits from the FLRC Challenge will support local running programs like Girls on the Run and the GIAC Navigators.

To increase the challenge, we have individual and team competitions for the speedy, the consistent, and the deliberate. Individuals will compete for over 200 prizes based on fastest times (overall and age group), best average times, and most efforts for each course. 10-year age group teams will go up against other generations for bragging rights based on age-graded times and most efforts. Be sure to check the dynamic FLRC Challenge leaderboard for changes in your individual and team standings after every run.

We’ve also created a special FLRC Challenge forum for chatting about courses, dissecting the standings, and friendly needling of other teams (will age and guile overcome youth and exuberance?). The first two courses (the East Hill Rec Way downhill mile and the Pseudo Skunk Cabbage half marathon) are open now, and we hope to open more soon, once the snow and ice melt. Over 75 people have registered already—we’d love to have you join us!

FLRC Board publishes Diversity Statement, First-Timers FAQs, and Privacy Notice

Over the past few months, several FLRC Board committees have been hard at work on infrastructural policies, and we have some public-facing documents we’d like to share, along with the COVID-19 Race Safety Precautions mentioned above. First, in response to the horrific killing of Black runner Ahmaud Arbery and the George Floyd protests, we formed a Diversity Committee, led by Jullien Flynn. To help share FLRC’s beliefs, values, and desire to increase inclusivity in the running community, that committee has developed a Diversity Statement. In addition, the committee created a set of First-Timers FAQs for Trail RacesRoad Races, and Track Meets to help anyone who might feel intimidated or overwhelmed when attending an FLRC event for the first time. Second, the Governance Committee, headed by Charlie Trautmann, has published a necessarily comprehensive Privacy Notice about the data-related aspects of FLRCs operations. We won’t be offended if you don’t read all of it.

Wanted: Energetic volunteer coordinator

As you know, FLRC is an all-volunteer organization, and after the retirement of a long-time member, we’re looking for a new volunteer coordinator. This position spent last year in limbo along with our pandemic-hampered race schedule, so it’s ripe for reinvention in 2021. You’d be perfect for the role of volunteer coordinator if you’re outgoing, organized, and enthused about FLRC. Core tasks involve collaborating with race directors to line up volunteers, recruiting new volunteers, and helping to build ways to track volunteers and their efforts so we can acknowledge and reward them at the Annual Picnic. For those early in their careers (hint, hint), this position will be great for community networking, will enhance your resumé, and could be a source of recommendations. Contact Adam Engst if you’re interested.

FLRC members place well in upstate New York snowshoe races

They don’t just organize snowshoe races, they run them. Congrats to Super Frosty Loomis race directors Eric Sambolec and Dave Kania for numerous top finishes in the Stonewall Snowshoe Marathon series, and for their current 1-2 rankings in the North Country Snowshoe Series. Other FLRC members participating and placing well in these races include Sarah Ridenour and Jim Miner. Apologies if we overlooked anyone, and please point us to race results if you or other club members run one.

FLRC weekly workouts continue

As the weather conditions have degraded over the past months, we’ve been missing the warm, dry track in Barton Hall more than ever. But when the sky gives us snow, we recommend taking advantage of it by cross-country skiing or snowshoeing! Nonetheless, if you’re looking for some structure for your training, we continue to post our weekly workouts for middle (5K to 15K) and long (half marathon and marathon) distance runners on the FLRC Forum. If you run with a friend or find yourself in the presence of walkers or runners, please follow FLRC’s recommendations for safe running!

Until next time, stay fit and stay healthy, and we look forward to running together again!

—Adam Engst, FLRC President and VP of Track

FLRC Challenge Registration and Two Courses Are Now Open

Registration for the FLRC Challenge  is now open—read all the details, check out the medals and swag, learn how self-timing works, see the full course list, ponder the prizes, and pore over the rules. We’ve also created a special FLRC Challenge forum  for asking questions, chatting about courses, dissecting the standings, and friendly needling of other teams (will age and guile overcome youth and exuberance?). We hope to open the first few courses this weekend, once our final signs arrive and the courses are clear from the latest snow—more details soon!

The FLRC Challenge is a series of ten open-course races—meaning you can run them anytime you want, as many times as you want, throughout the rest of 2021. Half of the courses are road, half are trail, and they range in distance from 1 mile to the half marathon. Run, walk, or hike them all to win the coveted FLRC Challenge medal! All profits from the FLRC Challenge will support local running programs like Girls on the Run and the GIAC Navigators.

It gives us great pleasure to announce that the first two FLRC Challenge courses are now open for running! Your fearless race director braved the afternoon blizzard to install the course marker signs for our shortest and longest courses, and Webscorer is now accepting results. Self-timing instructions are on the FLRC Challenge page, and we hope to have a video tutorial up soon.

As of February 22, two of the ten courses are open and Webscorer is now accepting results:

East Hill Rec Way
The East Hill Rec Way downhill mile course is unique in that it has two signs: a start sign at the Game Farm end, right at the Start Mile marker, and a finish sign at the Judd Falls end, next to the 1.0 Mile marker. Scan one to start, scan the other to end, or just track your time on your watch and enter it later.

Pseudo Skunk Cabbage
The Pseudo Skunk Cabbage half-marathon course starts and ends at the Ellis Hollow Community Center. You’ll find its start/finish sign underneath the One Way Entrance and Slow Down signs on the lower driveway entrance.

To increase the challenge, we have individual and team competitions for the speedy, the consistent, and the deliberate. Individuals will compete for over 200 prizes based on fastest times (overall and age group), best average times, and most efforts for each course. 10-year age group teams will go up against other generations for bragging rights based on age-graded times and most efforts. Be sure to check the dynamic FLRC Challenge leaderboard  for changes in your individual and team standings after every run.

Register today! 

2021 FLRC Scholarship Program

The Finger Lakes Runners Club is proud to announce our annual scholarship program is open for 2021:

Program/Eligibility

  • A minimum of two unrestricted $1,000 scholarships to be awarded to two deserving high school seniors who participated on their school’s cross country and/or track and field teams.
  • Eligible students must reside in Tompkins or a surrounding county.
  • FLRC membership is not required.

Process

  • To apply, applicants must submit a letter describing their academic, extracurricular, and running achievements. Include any plans you may have for a running career beyond high school and the personal benefits you have gained by participating in the sport.
  • Applicants should include two letters of recommendation—one from a teacher and one from a coach. Please do not send complete transcripts or additional material for consideration, as these will not be reviewed.
  • Mail application materials to:

    FLRC Scholarship Committee
    Attn: Lorrie Tily
    P.O. Box 185
    Locke, NY 13092

Identification of Recipient

  • Scholarship applications must be received by the Scholarship Committee by May 1, 2021. Committee members to review submissions and identify recipients by May 15.
  • Recipients may be asked to present their scholarship application materials to the FLRC Board.

Super Frosty Loomis 2021 sees repeat winners in Eric Sambolec and Amelia Kaufman

This past weekend, FLRC was proud to kick off our 2021 race season with the Super Frosty Loomis snowshoe race, the first outdoor FLRC event since last year’s Loomis. The weather was perfect, with plenty of sun and temperatures in the high 20s. Conditions were excellent, with over two feet of snow falling the week before. Some trails had seen enough use to get packed down a bit, while others were still soft and challenging—a perfect combination for snowshoe racing, if not for the fastest times. We had 11 finishers in the 5K and 25 in the 10K.

In the 5K, newcomer Michela Meister finished first with a time of 37:28, beating Eileen Randall’s second-place finish in 41:10. In the 10K, co-race director Eric Sambolec continued his dominance, notching his sixth straight win with a time of 50:59, outpacing Kurt Huebner’s 52:07 by over a minute. On the women’s side, Amelia Kaufman took home first place for the third year in a row with a time of 1:05:13, coming in comfortably ahead of Jenny Selig’s 1:12:02 for second place. Perhaps next year will bring some new competition for Eric and Amelia.

Many thanks to all our volunteers who made the race possible! Most notably, Martin Moravek spent hours directing traffic and helping park cars to squeeze as many people into the limited space available. Tonya Engst managed bib pickups with help from Micaela and Regina Moravek. Sandy Gregorich was instrumental in handing out rental snowshoes. Adam Engst and Melissa Wallace timed the race. And Joel Cisne and Wilderness Search & Rescue watched over the racers on the course to make sure everyone made it back to the finish line. Special thanks to Charlie and Ann Leonard for the use of their driveway and the Hammond Hillton warming hut, and to Matt Westerlund and Dion Snowshoes for the rental snowshoes.

Finally, thanks to all for adhering to FLRC’s COVID-19 race safety precautions—everyone was good about wearing masks and keeping their distance! As much as we missed using the warming hut and having our post-race party at the Dryden Hotel, it was great to get back to some semblance of normal.

Super Frosty Loomis: FLRC’s First Post-COVID Race (on Snowshoes)!

Good day, runners! We’re pleased to announce that registration is open for Super Frosty Loomis 1, FLRC’s annual 5K and 10K snowshoe race at Hammond Hill on Saturday, February 6th (with a no-snow makeup date of February 13th).

If you don’t have snowshoes, we’ll have 20 pairs available to rent for $5, and we may have a few additional pairs available for borrowing. Each distance is limited to 20 runners to comply with COVID-19 restrictions. There will be a wait list. Since parking is limited and others may be using the parking lot to access the trails, please make every effort to park close to the car next to you to leave as many possible parking spaces as we can.

Masks are required at all times when you’re not running, and please maintain at least 6 feet of distance from others whenever possible. If we can get Internet access, live results will be available, and results will be posted on the FLRC site after the race. We’ll hand out awards to age-group winners at the finish. Sadly, the warming hut won’t be available for runners this year, nor can we have a post-race awards ceremony at the Dryden Hotel.

Per FLRC policy, all runners must abide by these COVID-19 safety precautions:

  • Online pre-registration is required (there is no day of race registration!), and you must be able to respond affirmatively to the safety questions asked during registration.
  • If you feel in the slightest bit ill or are running a temperature, stay home!
  • Make sure to bring a mask or buff.
  • Bring your own hand sanitizer or sanitizing wipes.
  • A porta-potty will be available, but try to use the bathroom before leaving for the race.
  • Please do not carpool to the race with people who are not part of your household.
  • Plan to arrive at least 30 minutes before the race; bib pickup may be slower than normal.
  • At all times before the race, you must wear a mask and maintain a minimum of 6 feet from other participants. Stay warm in your car or by jogging.
  • Wear your mask at the starting line and, once the race begins, until you have established some distance from others around you. At that point, you may remove your mask but must keep it available for quick re-application as needed.
  • There will be no aid stations. Bring your own food and liquids.

Finally, please note that if a runner doesn’t comply with FLRC’s COVID-19 Race Safety Precautions as outlined above, the race director should be notified and will reiterate the guidelines to the person in question. If that person fails to comply, they will be asked to leave. If they continue to defy the race director’s request, they will be disqualified from the race and reported to the FLRC board for possible banning from future club events.

FLRC Footnotes for December 2020

Happy New Year, runners! We had no races in December, but quite a bit has been happening since our last issue. 

  • Nearly 150 people ran the Virtual Turkey Trot on their own to support Loaves & Fishes. 
  • Our Happy Holidays Scavenger Hunt has been a great success, with lots of participants and plenty more enjoying their silly photos. 
  • We had an FLRC Presents talk about Achilles tendinopathy that you can watch. 
  • Although we have been forced to cancel some races in early 2021, we have a peek at our big initiative for next year: the FLRC Challenge!

On to the details!

Are you ready for the FLRC Challenge in 2021?

COVID-19 has thrown a monkey wrench into our race schedule, so we have something new for you in 2021: the FLRC Challenge! It’s a series of ten virtual races, half road, half trail, ranging in distance from 1 mile to the half marathon. Complete them all to win the coveted FLRC Challenge medal! To increase the challenge, we have individual and team competitions for the speedy, the consistent, and the deliberate. The twist is that you can run each course as many times as you want throughout the year. Individuals will compete for over 200 cash prizes based on fastest times (overall and age group), best average times, and most efforts for each course. 10-year age group teams will go up against other generations for bragging rights based on age-graded times and most efforts. A dynamic online leaderboard will display individual and team standings. All profits from the FLRC Challenge will support local running programs like Girls on the Run and the GIAC Navigators. Race director Adam Engst isn’t quite ready to open registration, but you can watch his intro video and stay tuned for updates!

FLRC’s Happy Holidays Scavenger Hunt Gets Runners Taking Pictures

In FLRC’s Happy Holidays Scavenger Hunt, fellow runners from around the world (hi, Shelly!) competed to find six items each week and post their pictures to the FLRC Forum. The pictures have been hilarious, as contestants looked for ever-sillier ways of meeting the spirit of the hunt’s requirements, so be sure to check out the photos from Week #1, Week #2, Week #3, Week #4, Week #5, and Week #6. Thanks to Scavenger Hunt director Heather Cobb for giving many people some focus for their runs and pictorial entertainment for the rest of us!

FLRC’s Virtual Turkey Trot raises over $4000 for Loaves & Fishes!

A huge thank you to everyone who participated in FLRC’s Virtual Turkey Trot! Together, 148 runners raised over $4000 to help Loaves & Fishes feed those in need in our community, exceeding our usual goal by $1000. Kudos to race director Bruce Roebal for not letting the pandemic put a stop to this fine tradition of runners working to prevent hunger among us.

Watch “FLRC Presents: Managing Achilles Tendinopathy” on YouTube

If you missed Jason Tuori’s third FLRC Presents talk on Achilles tendinopathy, you can still watch it on FLRC’s YouTube channel. And if you have questions about pain in your Achilles or the back of your foot, feel free to ask them on the FLRC Forum! We took a break from FLRC Presents in December due to the holiday season, but we’re planning to be back in January with an open mic session where everyone can ask injury-related questions of several experts.

FLRC weekly workouts continue 

If you’re looking for some structure for your training, remember that we continue to post our weekly workouts for middle (5K to 15K) and long (half marathon and marathon) distance runners on the FLRC Forum. If you run with a friend or find yourself in the presence of walkers or runners, please follow FLRC’s recommendations for safe running!

Canceled: Winter Chill 5K series, indoor track meets, Hartshorne Masters Mile, and Skunk Cabbage Classic

It is with deep regret that FLRC must announce the cancellation of the Winter Chill 5K series, our indoor track meets, the Hartshorne Memorial Masters Mile, and the Skunk Cabbage Classic. Given expected infection rates, venue restrictions, and recommendations from local public health officials, FLRC believes that it would be irresponsible to encourage large gatherings of runners. Please help us control infections in our community by staying home, celebrating the holidays virtually with loved ones, and masking up whenever you’re in public.

Until next time, stay fit and stay healthy, and we look forward to running together again!

—Adam Engst, FLRC President and VP of Track

Canceled for 2021: Winter Chill 5K Series, Indoor Track Meets, Hartshorne Masters Mile, and Skunk Cabbage Classic

You likely saw this coming, but the FLRC board and race directors regret to announce the cancellation of the in-person runnings of the Winter Chill 5K series, our indoor track meets, the Hartshorne Memorial Masters Mile, and the Skunk Cabbage Classic.

In large part, we made this decision due to the recent rise in COVID-19 infection rates in the community and the concern that holiday gatherings will cause infections to surge even higher. Plus, Cornell University’s Barton Hall indoor track is not available for large groups, particularly off-campus visitors. Please help us control infections in our community by staying home, celebrating the holidays virtually with loved ones, and masking up whenever you’re in public.

The FLRC board and race directors will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and discuss future races at our upcoming board meetings. At the moment, we’re still hoping to hold the Super Frosty Loomis snowshoe race on February 6th and will make a final decision in mid-January.

As much as we hate canceling races, we’re excited about a major initiative we have planned for the local running community throughout 2021: the FLRC Challenge! Learn more about it here.

We encourage you to exercise regularly—the many benefits may include fun, stress relief, and boosting the immune system. Try to run in uncrowded areas, mask up when passing close to others, and [please follow our COVID-19 recommendations](https://fingerlakesrunners.org/covid-19/).

Stay fit, stay healthy, and we look forward to being able to run together again!

FLRC’s Virtual Turkey Trot Raises over $4000 for Loaves & Fishes!

A huge thank you to everyone who participated in FLRC’s Virtual Turkey Trot! Together, 148 runners raised over $4000 to help Loaves & Fishes feed those in need in our community.

If you ran but did not sign up on the Webscorer page, message me so I can add you to the list for the Honor Roll.

Please stay happy, safe, and healthy. I look forward to seeing you all at the 49th running of the Turkey Trot next year.

Gobble, Gobble!

Bruce Roebal
Director, Turkey Trot

FLRC Footnotes for November 2020

Greetings, runners! We have no in-person events again this month, but there’s still plenty to do. Most importantly, please help us support Loaves & Fishes in our Virtual Turkey Trot! We’re also hoping you’ll join in the fun of our Happy Holidays Scavenger Hunt for the rest of the year. Plus, be sure to check out our FLRC Presents series of injury talks—the next one looks at Achilles tendinopathy. Finally, note that regular deer hunting season goes from Saturday, November 21st through the end of Sunday, December 13th, so be sure to wear blaze orange if you’re out on the trails. Read on for details!

Turkey Trot goes virtual to raise money for Loaves & Fishes

We may not be able to meet in person for our traditional Turkey Trot prediction run, but race director Bruce Roebal is taking the Turkey Trot virtual this year as a fund run to benefit Loaves & Fishes of Tompkins County. Loaves & Fishes currently provides over 1200 meals every week to those in need, nearly three times more than last year at this time. Run or walk a 5-mile course of your choice anytime the week of Thanksgiving, before the end of Thanksgiving Day. No predictions. No times. No pies. Just future calories burned and meals for the hungry! For 2020 to count toward your inclusion on the Turkey Trot Honor Roll, please register for the Virtual Turkey Trot online. The $10 registration fee is equal to what we would have asked that you donate to Loaves & Fishes had we all run from Ithaca High School. If you wish, you can add an additional amount. 100% of the proceeds will be donated to Loaves & Fishes to help their efforts in feeding our community. Our goal is to raise at least $3000 to match the amount a normal Turkey Trot usually generates for Loaves & Fishes, and with your help, maybe we can exceed that number.

Build some fun into your runs with FLRC’s Happy Holidays Scavenger Hunt

Looking to spice up some dreary early winter runs? In FLRC’s Happy Holidays Scavenger Hunt, you’ll compete with fellow runners to find six items each week on your runs through the end of the year. For each item you find, take a selfie or a picture and post it to the FLRC Forum to earn a point. Each week, the runner(s) with the most points will be entered into a drawing to win fabulous FLRC swag at the end of the event. The Happy Holidays Scavenger Hunt is free, you can join at any time, and it will run from November 22 to December 31, 2020. You can run, walk, or hike, and there’s no minimum mileage required. Scavenger Hunt director Heather Cobb will be posting the first week’s items to find soon, and you can read more details on the forum.

Mark your calendar for “FLRC Presents: Managing Achilles Tendinopathy” on 11/23 at 6:30 PM

Our FLRC Presents series of virtual presentations is continuing! On Monday, November 23th at 6:30 PM, physical therapist Jason Tuori will be giving a free live virtual presentation on patellofemoral pain syndrome, more commonly known as runner’s knee. It’s perhaps the most common running injury, with up to half of all runners suffering from it at some point. Tuori will explain the anatomy of the knee, how you can differentiate patellofemoral pain syndrome from other knee conditions, what commonly causes it, how you can treat it, and how you can avoid it in the first place. Along with a graduate degree in Physical Therapy, Tuori is a certified Strength & Conditioning Specialist, a certified USA Track & Field Level 1 Coach, a certified USA Weightlifting Level 1 Coach, and an accomplished runner and triathlete who has dealt with his own share of injuries. The talk is free, but registration is required to get the Zoom connection details.

 200-day hiking streak by FLRC members Amy and Elizabeth Dawson

Congrats to FLRC members Amy Dawson and her daughter Elizabeth Dawson for their 200-day streak of hiking—covering nearly 600 miles—in local state parks during the pandemic. Their efforts garnered them a mention in both the Ithaca Times and New York State’s daily coronavirus update, a worthwhile email newsletter from the state about how we’re faring. Each installment includes a “Deep Breath Moment” featuring people who’ve done something extraordinary during these challenging times.

Watch “FLRC Presents: Managing Runner’s Knee” on YouTube

If you missed Jason Tuori’s second presentation on patellofemoral pain, also known as runner’s knee, you can still watch it on FLRC’s YouTube channel. And if you have questions about what’s going on in your knee, feel free to ask them on the FLRC forum!

FLRC weekly workouts continue after helping Gabrielle Woo to a PR

If you’re looking for some structure for your running, remember that we continue to post our weekly workouts for middle- (5K to 15K) and long- (half marathon and marathon) distance runners on the FLRC forum. FLRC member Gabrielle Woo reported that she dropped her half-marathon PR by over 5 minutes after running the long-distance workouts all summer. If you run with a friend or find yourself in the presence of walkers or runners, please follow FLRC’s recommendations for safe running!

Install the COVID Alert NY app on your phone to help stop the spread of COVID-19

Until we as a society can eliminate the coronavirus, races, group runs, and other club events simply won’t be the same. One easy thing we can do now is install the free COVID Alert NY app on our phones—there are versions for the iPhone and Android. After you enable it, it alerts you if you were in close contact with someone who later tests positive for COVID-19. The underlying technology was created in an unprecedented collaboration between Apple and Google and has received praise from privacy advocates because it doesn’t record or reveal your location or any personal information to anyone, including Apple, Google, New York State, or the federal government. It’s one more way we can all work together to protect each other and move toward normalcy.

Until next time, stay fit and stay healthy, and we look forward to running together again!

—Adam Engst, FLRC President and VP of Track