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Showing posts from January, 2008

Well, the Begging Worked...

Over the past week, I've sounded like Ebeneezer Scrooge begging to the ghost of Christmas Future to let him live. In my case, though, I've been Stresseneezer Shins praying to the ghost of Running Future. And like Ebeneezer, I feared this particular spirit the most. I dreamed of him stealing my season, my fitness and my sanity, all in one swift kick to my tibia.

But like a redeemed Scrooge, I woke up to a new day today. Three + miles over lunch, very little tenderness during the run, tiny bit after. Four Vitamin I's and and 1 icepack later, everything's still cool.

God bless us, everyone.

Like Ebeneezer, I'm going to be good now. No running tomorrow (back on the bike), only four miles or so on Saturday, no running on Sunday.

I will be better, oh spirit, I will. :)

Just a Pathetic YAY-ME Recovery Post

I walked today over lunch for 20 minutes, and my shin behaved.

Actually, it was a little stiff at the beginning but felt pretty good at the end. It's still a little tender and I'm not going to dive back into a full workout schedule, but I'm hopeful I may have dodged the stress fracture bullet. Dathan Ritzenheim said somewhere (though I can't find the quote) that stress fractures don't get better as the workout progresses. Sounds good to me.

The plan: I think I'm going to go the park tomorrow and try a 2-3 mile jog. Nothing fancy. Nothing fast. Just kind of shake things loose and see what happens.

More and more, I am thinking the Brandywin Duathlon would be a good key race for spring. A spring marathon is out, and I'm concerned that going for a half-marathon PR in spring might be too stressful, too. But a plan that's focused on the Du would force me to cross-train a lot. That would find me fit and healthy by Mid-April, perfect time to ramp up mileage for a …

The Runner Who Slayed the Monster

Next month, my company is sponsoring the World Media Run, an opportunity for attendees of the FOLIO: Publishing Summit to participate in a 5k race. FPS is taking place at the Doral Resort, home of the famous Blue Monster Golf Course:

The Blue Monster, home of the 2007 World Golf Championships-CA Championship, has hosted prestigious PGA TOUR events for the past 45 years. In fact, virtually every great name in golf has had a moment of glorious personal triumph on this world-class track. The famous 18th hole, with its signature fountain, was ranked by GOLF Magazine as one of the Top 100 Holes in the World.

Early on, the plan was to run around the resort in such a way as to not disturb the golfers. However, it turns out the event planner for the Summit used to manage road races and started thinking that an out-and-back course was kind of lame. Here's what I just learned:

The starting location and finishing location will be by the 18th green/Practice Putting green of the Blue Monster. You…

On Not Writing

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I've been thinking more of writing lately. Or rather, not writing.

Since a rather prolific period from 2000-2004, I've written very little fiction. Ok, no fiction.

It doesn't bother me, much. I've replaced that particular hobby/vice with a healthier one, and an arguably more objective one. In writing, one man's trash is another man's treasure. In running, a five-minute mile is a five-minute mile. Rinse and repeat.

That being said, I'm currently reading Stephen King's new book, Duma Key, and while I'm no Stephen King, when I read a good story, it makes me want to write a good story. And - if you like Stephen King - Duma Key is very good. Like Bag of Bones good. And if you don't like Stephen King, you'll likely think it's typical Stephen King.

Recently, when we were cleaning out the basement, I stumbled across the anthology I was published in, alongside my certificate for the 2004 Central Pennsylvania Writing Award. I looked at these stories a…

Dreaming in Duo

My shin is feeling a lot better. Not, "Hey I was just kidding, let's go bust out seven miles" better, but "Maybe if you stay off me two or three days I'll let you back out on the roads."

Which is fine with me. As a matter of fact, I decided to handle my rehab. this way:

1) Throughout all of this, I'm riding bike several times per week.
2) When I have my first day with no shin pain, I will not run.
3) The day after that day, I'll attempt a brisk walk. I read yesterday that a brisk walk approximately doubles the force on your legs, so it's a good test, but not the same type of test that running would be.

However, I figured out something yesterday. I don't have to do a triathlon that I don't train 1/3 for. If Feb. and March. allow me to train, I could do my first Duathlon. The Brandywine Valley Duathlon isn't five minutes from my house (more like an hour), but it has two runs, which plays to my strength, and zero swims, which plays to my big…

Worse Than I Thought...

Well, it appears I'm injured, dammit.

Five days after my last run, and I still have soreness in my left shin. While the pain is minimal when walking, it's there. And while I could run through it, it seems to make more sense to slam the breaks on now - on January 28th - than later in the spring when there are all sorts of races I want to run. Random thoughts:

1) Could be either a shin splint or a stress fracture. The localized nature causes me to think the latter. Either way, it appears the prescribed treatment is RICE. So, unless I've got a good reason to go to the Doc, I'll probably try to common-sense my way out of this: run when it doesn't hurt. Don't run until it doesn't. Go on the bike until then.

2) My plan had been to go from the FIRST plan to the Fitzgerald Plan, thinking that increased running would improve my running economy, my personal strength in the VO2, Lactic Threshold, Running Economy triangle that dictates performance. Alas, when I did this, …

Fitzgerald and I To Have Trial Separation....

Four weeks into Fitzgerald's Brain Training plan, and I'm calling an audible and moving back to a more FIRST-themed program.

In a nutshell, I've got a nasty shinsplint, which I'm pretty sure isn't a stress fracture but I think it would really like to be one when it grows up.

As discussed in earlier posts, Fitzgerald is basically six runs per week (though 1 day can be a cross-train day). FIRST is three runs, plus two cross trains.

My shin problem isn't exactly new. I had a tender spot throughout the last month of my marathon training but kept the pain minimal through frequent icing. Also, the FIRST program, with no days of consecutive running, kept me in good shape, too, so that while I finished some workouts sore, I never started them sore. Now, I'm sore at the beginning, which isn't a good thing.

I should also mention that the Fitzgerald philosophy promotes abandoning workouts when you're sore and changing up the intensity, too. Moreover, I was attempt…

Did She or Didn't She?

I'm a runner. I'm also a fan of conspiracy theories. So when there's a conspiracy theory out about a runner, I'm all over it, baby:

Did Katie Holmes really run the NYC Marathon? Inquiring minds offer proof that indicates she didn't. More data and details can be found at Defamer, which is the coolest site I stopped reading in the past year.

My favorite comment from the Kahuna's post: When the letter from Tom's lawyer arrives, be sure to scan and post it. I can't wait.

I Guess I Have About 10 Minutes Left...

So Friday I get my latest batch of insulin pump supplies in the mail. Along with it is a stack of Minimed propaganda, which is fine. Looks like there's a calendar. Which is fine. Looks like there are three calendars, which is fine - if you really like calendars. ("Why am I getting 3 calendars?" I wonder as I thumb through it.)

Lo and behold, I'm Mr. April. Which is exactly what I've been calling myself in front of my wife since that moment.

It's a decent pic - used to be my profile pic on this blog and was from last year's triathlon. The calendar itself is interesting, 3 or 4 athetic guys, 3 or 4 children, a couple of teenagers and an adult woman or two. Illustrative of 1 of the problems of diabetic marketing: aside from a worthless pancreas, we have nothing in common and thus, look a bit odd all thrown together on the same calendar.

Nevertheless, as Mr. April, I approve.

And then today the local tv station showed up to interview me about being Mr. April. Nah…

The Marathon in a Nutshell.

Via kch, MarathonGuide has posted their 2006 stats... All kinds of good info. to see there. In my ultimate quest to someday go sub. 3, here's the chart I liked best:

2007 Finishing Times by Half Hour
Finish Time* Total % Female % Male % 2:09:02-2:29:596030.1%90.0%5940.2%2:30:01-2:59:596,3261.6%5480.3%5,7782.3%3:00:00-3:30:0032,8038.1%4,8453.0%27,95811.4%3:30:00-4:00:0076,90018.9%22,61414.1%54,28622.1%4:00:00-4:30:0084,75520.9%32,49620.3%52,25921.2%4:30:00-5:00:0075,92018.7%32,96920.6%42,95117.5%5:00:00-5:30:0050,78912.5%24,03515.0%26,75410.9%5:30:00-5:59:5934,3838.5%17,57011.0%16,8136.8%6:00:00-6:29:5917,8044.4%9,8126.1%7,9923.2%6:30:00-6:59:5911,4732.8%6,8704.3%4,6031.9%7:00:00-7:29:595,9031.5%3,6952.3%2,2080.9%7:30:00-7:59:593,5250.9%2,1011.3%1,4240.6%8:00:02-8:29:581,9330.5%1,0870.7%8460.3%8:30:00-8:59:591,2570.3%6880.4%5690.2%9:00:00-14:54:121,8770.5%9740.6%9030.4%Total406,251100%160,313100%245,938100%

Going... Up!

Before the main story, last week in review:
Monday - supposed to be a "base" run day, but I knew Tuesday would have to be a base day, so I did hills again. That was rough.
Tuesday - 6mi. base run. I am becoming Captain 7:39.
Wednesday - 4miles, recovery-ish.
Thursday - Was supposed to be a tempo, but I had some trouble recovering from the hills. Made it a base.
Friday - recovery w/ the gang from work. Just over 4 miles.
Saturday - rest.

So, Sunday. I'd been in contact w/ a guy I went to high school with who's training for his second Ironman and has a sub. 3 marathon on his resume. We decided to get together for a trail run at Mt. Gretna, one of the more scenic (and hilly) trail areas around me and the only significant one I hadn't run at before. Fortunately, the guy I was with trains there often.

My plan called for 8 miles but being a serious guy who trains by time, my friend decided to go an approximate route he knew, which turned out to be just over ten miles. Didn'…

Run the World, Baby - the Whole World!

Or, at least 3.1 miles of it.

So here's the deal: The company I work for has runners. A lot of runners. Well, percentage-wise, a lot of runners, and so we decided to do something running related. We - along with Runner's World, the Wise Group and FOLIO: Publishing Summit are sponsoring a virtual 5k.

What's a virtual 5k? Well, you can run it wherever you want. On a track, on the road. Heck, run around your house 300 times, so long as you can map the mileage.

Then what? Submit your time online at http://www.worldmediarun.com and see how you rate against other runners.

What's with the media thing? We're a media company. We sell to media companies. (It was a way to get our bosses to underwrite this thing.) If you're not in the media, you're still more than welcome. I could pull out the soapbox and explain how if you've ever written or commented on a blog you are the media, but I'll save it for later. Trust me: you're welcome to run.

When? Anytime from 2/…

On Moderation (Kids in Athletics)

If I were to propose to you that my nine year old train for a marathon, there would no doubt be some objections. Medically inclined people would talk about joint stress, growth plates, etc. And they'd be right.

Another group would complain about the fact that training for a marathon takes time. A fair amount of time. Time that a nine year old can spend on other things. Like school work. Or playing in the back yard. Or - heck - even playing a video game or two. These are the people I want to vehemently agree with today as it's come to my attention that my kids currently spend about as much time swimming in a given month as I spend during many of my months of marathon training.

Some notes:
1) The kids are actually supposed to be going to more practices than we send them to. This is the amount that we've cut back to.
2) We've also cut back the number of meets we're going to as well.
3) Our kids swim for the local Y team. We chose this program last year because it was less …

I'm in Love...

The new Garmin has been announced. It appears to function as the old one with two key enhancements:

1) Wireless updates to your PC.
2) It's not ugly as crap.

Aside from the convenience of uploading data without a cable, the two times my 305 locked up were when I was hooked up via the USB cord, so it makes me a little nervous, even if the system reset worked both times.

Look for the 405 to be on my Christmas list in 11 short months. :)

Random Diabetic Athlete Thoughts...

1) If you read through some recent comments, you'll see Anne's asking if I got my Triabetes t-shirt... Hell, yeah, I did and it rocks! Give Anne a $20 and she'll send you one, too!

2) Speaking of triabetics, the Triabetes website is looking mostly good. I've added triabetic Steve Ahn to my own personal blogroll.

3) I would, however, advise the Triabetic webmaster to can the Google ads. Currently, there's one promising to cure 64% of Type 1 diabetics. Incidentally, this particular lie points here. Assuming the Triabetics are looking for legitimate sponsors like Minimed, Lilly and others, it might help not to let the carnival barkers have ads on their website. In fact, if I were a potential sponsor, I'd make that demand immediately. Removing those ads will stop that objection before it happens.

4) Then again, I suppose it's possible that Halle Berry was cured by Diamaxol. Hmmm.. I can see the ad now, "Hi, I'm Halle Berry. Since I live in a make-believe …

Pump Up the Volume...

So yesterday I took my first run using one of "DJ Steve's Boyett's" podrunner mp3's with me. If you're not familiar with DJ Steve, he makes one hour mixes at different beats per minute... you find your personal pace/beat, and it's like a custom soundtrack for your run.

Some thoughts:
1) I'm not interested in the music/no music debate. Some days I want it. Some days I don't. I've raced without music. I've raced with it. Aside from the fact that I make the assumption that I'm faster than people who use music in 5k races, I hold no iPod stereotypes.

2) I'm really not a dance music fan, per se, or EDM as Steve calls it.... if DJ Steve's mix came on when I was driving, I would change the channel. HOWEVER, when I try to play the music that I do like when I'm running, that doesn't work out, either... rare is the ballad that makes for a good tempo run. Likewise, Charlie Robison is perfect with a six pack, not a six miler.

3) So usi…

Yet Another Retrospective Post...

One year ago, this is what I said I wanted to do.

In the end, I didn't do three triathlons - instead deciding after the first that I make a much better runner than runner/biker/swimmer. I don't regret that decision at all, though I suspect I'm not done w/ triathlons forever. Just for now.

It's interesting that I was so coy about pursuing a marathon, when in fact that's pretty much what the year (and this blog) became about. It's funny to see how much things change in a year.

I also announced in that same post that I wasn't picking up any freelance work in '07 and that was a good move. In fact, a former client asked me about a small gig a few weeks ago and I just quickly and politely said, "No thanks." Life is plenty full right now.

2007 ended up being a year of just over 1,300 miles for me, running-wise, plus a nice chunk of biking. At least for the spring, I'm going to tease the bulldog a bit more - doing more recovery runs and less cross tra…