Five ways to run five miles

Is there a good website for overlaying routes, or gps tracks, in different colors? This is closest I found, using ridewithgps.

Selected (for visual impact!) from routes used by the weekend running crew this year.

  • Through Ambler Heights, down 100′  in mile 2
  • Past Severance Hall (-250′) and President Garfield
  • Through Coventry Village, Cumberland Park and Cain Park (±50′ several times)
  • Around John Carroll (+200′)
  • Up the Shaker Lakes and around Horseshoe (+100′)

Talk about visual impact; I borrowed the <background-color:> abuse from 1995.


This weekend’s 5-miler run takes us through the beautiful Lakeview Cemetery.  (Aside: I can’t believe how long I lived in Cleveland before discovering it.)

That via Google Earth (with “elevation exaggeration” turned on).  On the left side of this view is Euclid Avenue eastbound (upward), which really means northeast-bound, as we align to the lakeshore in these parts.  Parallel to it is the ridge that separates the Heights from the city.  It’s the ridge that provided most of our run elevation, too.

weekend ride redux

On Saturday, we repeated our home-made century route from last summer.  This time, 4 of us started together, incrementing to 6 for much of the ride – a very nicely sized group, and almost competent enough for bursts of pelotonized practice.  No complaints about the weather: t-storms cleared before our 6:05 start and the heat kicked in just in time to guarantee a modest beating for the final 30 miles or so.

I captured the entire gps track this time and imported it into the new version of Google Earth for route visualization.  Here’s the approximate route in google maps.

Circa 6:20 of moving time for 106 miles with 3400′ of climbing.  Here are elevation and speed profiles from gps.

Here are some screenshots from the track display in Google Earth.  Not bad for free software.  One shows a climb out of the valley in Bedford Reservation.  The other shows our sightseeing route through downtown.  (At the top is MLK to University Circle, then down the ritzy new Euclid Avenue bike lanes; the loop image left is around Browns Stadium before dropping to the flats and across the Cuyahoga.)

More elevation profiles

I’ve been playing around with some (free) online mapping tools.  Using a combination of three, I was able to create elevation profiles of the locals’ favorite hill-climbing zone, the Chagrin River valley.  (Most importantly, I was able to do so without before riding all of these hills in sequence to record real gps tracks.)

  1. Google map using ‘driving directions’ (in bicycle mode to catch paths, where needed)
  2. Push the google map to this js scriptlet to generate gpx code
  3. Save the gpx code to a file, and upload to gpsvisualizer, which can look up elevation data and plot profiles

Here, I’ve charted a few of my options for hill repeats (a couple of miles, or 5-10 min per climb, is a practical effort for this), all starting from River Rd., which runs along the valley.  (The profiles confirm what I already knew: that Old Mill or Rogers are not for the faint-of-heart, and Berkshire and Fosters belong at the end of the day.  Nonetheless, I like the illustration.)

Charts are below the fold:  Continue reading

CAA Ride 2010

On Saturday I joined the Case Alumni Association’s annual 100-km ride.  (An aside: the CAA represents the engineering school and physical sciences, but there’s another group covering the balance of the arts and sciences.  But, they don’t have a bike ride.)

The official route started on campus, beelined east toward more interesting terrain, looped through the boonies (featuring, as a nominal destination, Holden Arboretum and Penitentiary Glen) then meandered down the gravity well back to the university.  The official map gives some indication, although our group failed to follow it precisely.

More descriptive is my side view of the route.  For the locals, I’m surprised that the initial, gradual climb to Richmond Rd is as significant an elevation gain as some of the later quad-busters.  Here, I used SportTracks to plot gpx data, and Powerpoint to annotate with rotated text boxes.

Cleveland ten miler 2010

For my first race number since Thanksgiving, I ran the Hermes Cleveland 10-miler on Saturday.  The route changed last year from downtown streets to an Edgewater Park start (just west of downtown) with a westward out-and-back.  The route was pleasant enough for a 1D course (and with a nice loop down at the end to finish on the lower level of Edgewater), but I maintain that a race called the “Cleveland” something should use urban streets.  Strike one.  Strike two: instead of the Brooks tech tee giveaway in previous years, someone sold out to Adidas.  I mourn the loss of the best souvenir race shirt around.  There was no third, however: the weather was cool and only slightly rainy, the race was well-organized with good route support, and the sold-out field of 1700 just about the right size.

[Route map: gps track imported from Garmin to SportTracks, displayed using Google Earth.]

I’ve been riding some but running almost none; I ran this one with Andrew C. (with whom I also ran much of the 2008 race) at a conversational pace and managed pretty steady splits (aside from a slow first mile stuck in the crowd and faster final mile with a moderate downhill): first five miles in 43:46 and second five in 43:36.