Saucony Flo50 Summer Training Blog: D.J. Principe

David "D.J." Principe is the top ranked 3200m runner in the Class of 2017, as he ran 9:00.31 this spring. He also earned his first individual All-American honors with a fifth-place, 14:42.91 run in the 5k at New Balance Nationals Outdoor. The defending Rhode Island State Cross Country Champion is a rising junior on the prolific La Salle, RI squad that won the New Balance Nationals Indoor 4xMile (17:11.07). With a national title on the track under their belts, the Rams are looking for redemption and a top finish at Nike Cross Nationals (NXN) this fall.

Week 1 - Week 2 - Week 3 - Week 4 - Week 5 - Week 6 - Week 7 - Week 8

Week 1 ( June 30 - July 4)

With outdoor track finally ending at NBN Outdoors, i decided to take a solid week off from running. A week that in my opinion does little for physical health, but more mental. Like most runners we take what we do seriously, and in-season training can get pretty taxing so sometimes a week with no schedule or commitments is just what we need. Along with teammates, i tried to enjoy the small fraction of my summer away from running. Whether it was saying goodbye to some seniors, or playing a little street hockey (skating not being my strong suit) we found a way to keep things interesting. So after a Friday night race at NBN (the 19th of June) i decided to fire things back up on the 30th (not including a few shakeout runs the week before)

This first week back is always an interesting one, with a focus on just acclimating my body to running again.

Tuesday - 4 miles in 29:20 (7.20 pace). The classic achy knees are always fun, but all things considered a pretty solid first day back. nothing out of the ordinary.

Wednesday- 6 miles in 43:45 (7.18 pace). Another relaxed run with Dan Paiva (one of our Graduates) from his house. Felt much better from the day before. No aches today, feeling pretty solid.

Thursday- 5 miles in 35:10. Played some hockey with the guys for a while and was pretty tired (once again, not very good at skating so i get banged up). All things considered, 5 miles and a slaughter of the Campagna brothers in the rink adds up to a good day. Was planning on 8 but dropped it back to five.

Friday- 11 miles in 1:25:56 (7.49 pace). This is a perfect case for why not to run with your dad and his friends your first week back. Wanted 8, ended up with 11. Went on some twisting single track trails at a place called Big River. Very hard to run that loop fast. All in all felt good. Did not do too many long runs during track with so much racing going on..

Saturday - 8 miles in 58:21 (7.18 pace). Always a good with dad from home. He keeps me from running too fast. No need to go crazy right now. Just trying to get some miles under my legs before i focus on time.

All together i was pretty pleased with my first week back. Had to retire from Hockey and Basketball, but its for the better. Felt pretty good on most runs and am excited for whats to come this year.

Week Total- 29 miles

Summer Log Week 2 (July 5- July 11)

Well second week of training is here and that means team practice. We typically meet Monday and Wednesday nights for workouts, Thursday morning for a normal run (i have work so can't go to these), and Saturday morning for our long runs. Good to get in runs with the guys. They always keep things interesting.

I was pretty excited with our first meeting. Had a lot of guys who have all ready gotten into great shape. We lost some key guys last year but these guys were willing and ready to step in on day one which was great to see.

Sunday- 10.15 miles in 1:10:58 (7.00 pace) Ten mile loop from my house with my Dad and his training partner Bob Jackman. This is probably one of my favorite loops. Its nothing special but its always my go-to loop when i run from home (something i do not get to do often during the season)

Monday- 8 miles in 56:44 (7.06 pace) First Team Practice!! Did 8 miles with Matt Bouthillette and Jack Salisbury. Also ran about 5 or 6 of our miles with some other guys from the team like Alex Camps who did 7 miles that day. Great way to start the season.

Tuesday- 8 miles in 58:17 (7.17 pace) Ran 8 miles with some graduates Dan, Connor, and Adam from my house. Ran in some trails at Snake Den Park. Was not a very good run though. There were a lot of bugs (Connor has a nasty horse fly bite) so we hopper out and ran back on the roads.

Wednesday- 8 miles in total tonight. FIRST WORKOUT (kind of). Wednesday was our first up beat run of the year. We did a 3 mile tempo in 17:20. Our splits were 5.43, 5.50, 5.47 so nothing crazy just a pick up run to get the legs moving a little. Everyone was very happy with how we felt. Alex Campagna (or Camps) had a great workout sticking with us the whole time and looking really strong

Thursday- 9.25 miles in 1:12:12 (7.48 pace) Another run from home with Dad in the trails. Same trails as Tuesday but he actually showed me a new loop so it went much better (Wear shirts in the trails!!! cuts down on bugs tremendously)

Friday- 6 miles in 41:20 (6.53 pace) was supposed to run with the guys at 9 AM but woke up at 9:15 so that didn't happen. I ended up sitting around for a little before going out for my run and ended up cutting it short. Wanted 8 but didn't feel that great, just cut it short to recharge a little bit.

Saturday- 10 miles in 1:04:51 (6.29 pace) Saturday practice at Goddard Park. Went on a team run along with some kids from East Greenwich, led by their most recent grad Tommy Sommer. Everyone felt really good. After one downhill mile they just kept clicking. Was very happy to respond from not feeling well the night before.

Great first full week of training. I am very pleased with how things are going and even more pleased with how the team is doing. Can't wait to see what these guys can do this season.

Week Total: 59.4 miles

Summer Log Week 3 (July 12- July 18)

Week three is another basic build up week, however it also starts the beginning of our strength training in the gym. Other than that this is a pretty straight forward week.

Sunday- 8 miles in 57:25 (7.11 pace) just an easy run to start to week alone from my house.

Monday- 10 miles in total. This was our first hill workout of the year. We run a .55 mile loop (the first .22 being all uphill). We run our reps non-stop so we use the second half of the loop to recover but always keep moving. So we started off doing 8 hills, somewhere around 3.20 to 3.23 for each loop. All in all felt pretty good, and this is actually leaps and bounds ahead of our first hills last year which we only did 6 about 10 seconds slower a lap. We also did a 3 mile warmup, and a 3 mile cool down.

Tuesday- 10 miles at Turtles (my dad's running group) ran three miles, then picked up a few more people and did 7 more. Total time was 1:07:22 (6.44 pace) had some stomach problems but legs felt good.

Wednesday- 9 miles in total at practice. 3 mile warmup followed by 3 mile Tempo. Nice controlled tempo in 16:14 (5.25 pace) Everyone felt really good, Alex Camps keeps stepping up. Nice and easy three mile tempo after

Thursday- Start Strength training today, going to be doing it on Tuesday's and Thursdays. Before hand a few of us got in 6 miles. Was feeling a little tired from a quick turn around from the run the night before. All in all a solid run and solid workout afterwards. Time- 42:26 (7.04 pace)

Friday- 8.1 miles in 52:53 (6.32 pace) Trail run by myself. started off slow but got bored and decided to push a hill. It got me feeling pretty good and i just started clicking. Felt really good. Upper body was sore from the day before.

Saturday- 12 miles in 1:18:56 (6.35 pace) really solid long run with Matt Bouthillette and Jack Salisbury. Relatively even paced run and everyone was feeling really strong. Had a bunch of guys who had great runs as well that stopped at ten miles.

Total miles for the week- 63.10 miles

Summer Log Week 4 (July 19- July 25)

This week I decided to bump up my miles with a few doubles because I am going away on vacation next week. Although we try to stay focused things always get in the way on trips, and runs get cut short. So i bumped this week up so i can drop next week back. I decided to do my doubles on workout days so i could practically get a shakeout run in the mornings, and i found it actually really helped.

Sunday - 8 miles in 1:03:20 (7.55 pace) I like to keep one day a week (usually Sundays) really easy to let my legs catch up a little bit, and with a late night to day before my dad and i took this one really easy.

Monday - 13 miles in total for the day. 4 mile morning run at 7.27 pace, then at practice we did 8 HILLS with a 3 mile warmup, and a two mile cool down (9 miles in total for the night)

Tuesday - 8 miles in 1:01:14 (7.39 pace) early run before Weight Room so it was a quick turn around from the night before. Took it nice and easy with 7 miles before working out and 1 mile after

Wednesday - 14 miles in total. 4 mile morning run at 7.28 pace. Then at practice we did 2x2miles at tempo pace. First rep was in 10:36 (5.19-5.16) second was in 10:32 (5.20-5.12). Three mile warmup and cool down got us 10 for the night. Everyone felt really strong, ran the workout with Matt and Jack and Tommy Sommers, a grad from EG. Camps and Martinez had great workouts as well

Thursday - 7 miles in 52:4 (7.32 pace) another run after a quick turn around from the night before. Got in six miles before weight room and then 1 miles after.

Friday - 14 miles in total. Big road race down in Narraganset called The Blessing of the Fleet. All the guys came down to run it which made for a great run. Had a huge pack including Matt, and Jack, Alex Camps, Adam Rego and Mike Stephens (two graduates) and some other local guys. We stayed at a controlled 6 minute pace for the ten mile race for the first half and then wanted to bring down the last few miles while still feeling comfortable. I had to take a bathroom brake right before 7 miles so i ran in the last three alone. Ended up with a time around 58:46 on my watch

Saturday - 8 miles in 57:57 (7.15 pace) I stayed in Narraganset with my cousins over night and did 8 miles before heading to the beach. Got in 3.75 miles with my younger cousin while he was on his bike, and then dropped him off at home before finishing up the rest of the 8 mile run.

Weekly mileage total- 72 miles

All in all i felt great this week, even with the bump in mileage. By bumping it up with separate runs, i still got the time on my feet without over working for the extra miles. I'm a big fan of doubles in order to get in that little bit extra, without over-stressing yourself.

Summer Log Week 5 (July 26- August 1)

Well, all I can say is it's a good thing I did some extra last week. This week, I went on vacation and with that, comes short runs. Went to Vermont with some friends, and then Block Island and found myself always moving around and going to bed late so a lot of runs got cut short. Luckily, I have a race on Sunday I want to rest up for so it all worked out well.

Sunday, July 26th - 11.2 miles 1:23:10 (7.26 pace). Legs felt pretty tired but that's expected. Ran a hard 10 on Friday and had some nasty allergies the night before, but all things considered, I wanted to grab some extra miles today to get ready to go on vacation. It's a good thing I did.

Monday, July 27th - 6 miles in 49:16 (8.13 pace). Ran after the 3 hour drive to Vermont so legs were tight, but I still don't feel that great. Going to take the next few days easy to try and get my legs back under me.

Tuesday, July 28th - Woke up early and did 6 miles by myself in 44:09 (7:22 pace). Got in this run before we went to a ropes course in Vermont. Tried to do a few pick ups to wake up my legs a little but could tell I was still tired so I stopped doing them. I was hoping to get another run in after the rope course but it was pretty strenuous so I was fried after.

Wednesday, July 29th - Went golfing for five hours and took the day off. Just haven't been feeling great, and went back in my log to see I haven't taken a day off in a while. Figured I needed it.

Thursday, July 30th - 8 miles in 58:23 (7.18 pace). Ran 8 with dad after getting home from Vermont. Legs definitely feel a little better. Day off seemed to help so feeling confident about the race over the weekend.

Friday, July 31st - 3 miles at 7 minute pace. Left for Block Island with some friends and actually slept late so we all only grabbed 3 miles before hopping on the Ferry. Was hoping to grab some miles later on in the day but after a log day in Block Island, that didn't happen.

Saturday, August 1st - 8 miles in 54:47 (6.51 pace). First practice back and first run where I felt myself again. Did 4 miles with the guys around 6.30-6.45 pace, and then turned around and did the last 4 at 7 minute pace. Have a race tomorrow so I wanted to take it a little easy on the last few. All in all, finally feeling ready to go for tomorrow's race at the Run 4 Kerri, a great 4 mile road race with a great Elite Field.

This week was exactly what I thought it was going to be. A garbage week. All crappy miles at crappy paces. I planned for it to be low, just not that low but ill even it all out. Ended up running really well at the Run 4 Kerri and thats all i wanted out of this week. I'll post the results for that race next week. Time to ramp things back up and get back to real training.

Weekly Mileage Total 42.2

Summer Log Week 6 (August 2- August 8)

This week started off with an awesome run at the Run 4 Kerri, a fantastic local road race, and ended getting ready for another great run at the Bobby Doyle Summer Classic. It felt great getting refocused this week and was very happy to close out another great week of training with the team.

D.J. speaks to Steve Mazzone of RI MileSplit after running 20:21 for four miles to place fifth at the Run4Kerri road race.

Sunday, August 2nd - RUN 4 KERRI. Four mile road race down in Wakefield. Had a great race. Ended up running 20:23 (5.06 pace) and felt very good. With the first mile being downhill, I went out in a 4.51 and then tried to make an effort to chill out for the next two miles. The second mile was 5.09 and the third mile, which was uphill, was 5.19. After feeling very comfortable after the middle two miles, I wanted to try and finish pretty strong and closed in a 5.03. Felt very strong throughout the whole race which is very encouraging, and definitely feel like the increased mileage is helping a lot. In total got in 10 miles with a 2 mile warmup and 4 mile cool down with a bunch of guys from the race. The field was very deep this year.

Monday, August 3rd - 11 miles in 1:19:22 (7.13 pace) Nice easy long run with the team at practice. Ran around the East Side of Providence with graduate Connor Hennessey. No hill workout this week due to the race yesterday, and a slight drop in intensity for the week to recover a little. Even our tempo for this week will be a lot slower.

Tuesday, August 4th - 8 miles in total in the morning at about 7.30 pace. Again, we did 7 miles before weight room and 1 mile after to shake out our legs. Grad Dan Paiva even made an appearance this week, showing up to both of our weight room sessions (Didn't know he could wake up that early).

Wednesday, August 5th - 12 miles in total today with a 3 mile run before work and then practice at 6PM. 9 miles at practice with the team. 3 mile warmup and then we were supposed to do a 3.3 mile tempo loop. However i had to hop off the course to go to the bathroom so i ended up doing a 4 mile loop at 5.45 pace (very relaxed tempo). This is the second time this week i have had some stomach issues. I think it is due to eating to close to practice so that should be an easy fix. All in all feeling good. No soreness from Sunday's race so I'm feeling good to go for the rest of the week.

Thursday, August 6th - 11 miles in total today. Woke up a few minutes late to go meet the guys to I only got in 4 miles before weight room and then a mile after again. However later on in the day I tacked on a few more miles with my dad when he came home from work to even everything out.

Friday, August 7th - 7 miles with my dad in the morning before work. Once again wasn't feeling that great when it comes to my stomach. I had some peanut butter crackers before i ran and all that processed food didn't sit very well so just need to be conscious of what I am eating and when.

Saturday, August 8th - 13 mile long run in 1:28:51 (6.50 pace) Felt very good on this run. Have been running all easy slow runs this week and felt really relaxed and fresh today. Kept it relaxed and felt even better afterwards. No stomach issues or anything so all in all a very good long run with the guys. Harry Dewitt came with us for 12 of the 13 and looked really strong today.

Total Mileage - 72 miles

Great week of training but perhaps the biggest news for the week is that my boat is finally fixed. Have been off the water for a month now so it was good to have some of the guys from the team over the house Saturday and start hitting the wakeboard again (more sore from that than the long run).

Summer Log Week 7 (August 9 - August 15)

Similar to last week, I started this week with a local road race, the Bobby Doyle Summer Classic. This race always attracts tons of local high school runners, and it always lands in the middle of our training schedule (so that means trying to go slow around kids we usually compete with). I also went down to Alabama this week to move my sister into college, but I was pretty determined to make this little trip different than the week in Vermont and put an emphasis on keeping my mileage where it needed to be.

Sunday August 9th - Bobby Doyle Summer Classic- 5 mile road race in 29:27. All miles hovering around 6 minutes and then we picked it up a little bit on the last mile. A very relaxed tempo but felt really good. Ran with Matt Bouthillette and Alex Camps. Some recent grads Dan Paiva, Connor Hennessey, and Mike Stephens ran a little bit faster today. 3 mile warmup and 2 mile cool down got us 10 for the day and a solid start to the week.

Monday August 10th - Hill workout. 11.2 miles in total. 3 mile warmup and cool down (so 6 in total) and 10 hills in total. Really good workout for a lot of guys. Starting to see some guys get their legs back under them, and personally this was probably the easiest a hill workout has felt all year, and yet it was the fastest so that was a confidence booster.

Tuesday August 11th - 7 miles in total with 6 before going in the weight room and the typical 1 mile shakeout run afterwards. The usual slow pace to try and recover from last night's hills, and get ready for a tempo tomorrow.

Wednesday August 12th - 2x2mile tempo in the morning with Matt Bouthillette and Dan Paiva. First interval out in a 5.13 then a 5.12 for a 10:25 total time. We had a 4 minute recovery and then started the next loop. Went out a little too fast (2.34ish) so slowed up to a 5.11, but then found ourselves locked into a pace that was to slow for the next half mile so picked it back up the final half mile of the interval to close in another 5.11. Total time on that 2 mile interval was 10:22. Felt really good today and really controlled. Ran in the morning because I left for Alabama that night and couldn't make it to practice. 3 mile warmup and cool down got 10 for the day.

Thursday August 13th - Woke up first day in Alabama and got 8 miles with my dad. Insanely hot and humid down there so ran around 7.20 pace. Looks like you either wake up early enough to beat the heat down here or suffer through it.

Friday August 14th - 14.2 miles in total today. Woke up a little earlier than yesterday to try and beat some of the heat (it didn't work) but still logged another relaxed 10.2 miles (7.24 pace). Then did 4 miles a little later in the day when it got a little cooler out.

Saturday August 15th - 10 miles in 1:12:25 (about 7.15 pace) woke up late so it was pretty nasty out. The air is so thick down here it almost makes you drowsy while you are running. Almost makes me wish those cold, end of the year cross country runs would show up all ready.

Weekly Mileage total- 70.4 miles

Another solid week of training. Happy I was able to keep my mileage up while away, and even happier with how both workouts went this week. Coming back home from Alabama on Sunday and next Monday starts mandatory practices at our school.

Summer Log Week 8 (August 16- August 22)

This week marks the beginning mandatory practice for the La Salle team. We got a chance to see exactly how many kids are going to come out for cross country this year. This week also shows just how beneficial summer training has been for both varsity members, and those looking to move up within the team. Those who put in the extra work over the summer showed this week just how much stronger they were than others in workouts, and our two mile time trial.

Sunday August 16th - 9 miles in 1:04:00 (about 7.07 pace) 9 miles with my dad in the morning on our last day in Alabama. Very happy to be going home after a bunch of hot and humid runs.

Monday August 17th - 9.5 miles in 1:05:14 (about 6.52 pace) First day of mandatory practice. We did one of our common loops which came out to 9 miles but also did a half mile warmup before all of our pre-run drills. This is a pretty typical practice routine followed by strides after our run, and some core and strength work.

Tuesday August 18th - 9.7 miles in 1:11:30 (about 7.22 pace) 9.2 mile loop with a half mile warmup. Ran in some relatively slow trails because it was really hot out today. Did 12 half mile laps in a somewhat shaded trail loop (not the most ideal run) Slow run today with the expectation of our time trial tomorrow.

Wednesday August 19th - Decided to move the time trial to tomorrow so 10.3 miles in 1:11:43 (about 6.58 pace) Finally caught some overcast today so we decided to rest up a little and recharge from the hot days of late. Should have cool weather for our time trial tomorrow so hopefully it all works out.

Thursday August 20th - Time Trial. 4 mile warmup then ran out 2 mile time trial on the track. Matt Bouthillette and I ran controlled together and ended uo finishing in 9:36 for 2 miles (4.46 mile followed by a 4.50) some great performances today by Freshman Joe DosReis and by Junior Tommy Colucci, both of whom are fighting for one of the last spots on our varsity squad. Time trial was followed by a 4 mile cool down.

Friday August 21st - 11.6 miles in total today. 8.6 miles at practice in 7.10 pace and then 3 miles with my dad real slow at home to make sure i hit 70 for this week.

Saturday August 22nd - 14.5 miles in 1:40:40 (about 6.57 pace) half mile warmup followed by 14 miles on the east side of Providence. Everyone felt pretty strong today. Ran on my shoes about 2 days too long and paid for it today (a little achey) Keep track of the miles on your shoes! no need to over stress your joints!

Weekly mileage total - 74.60

A solid first week for the full La Salle team. Glad to see the whole team working hard and everyone seems really excited to pick up where we left off last year. We lost a lot of key guys last year but several kids are showing to work ethic to try and fill in those gaps.