Saturday, December 19, 2009

mid-December update

I'm slowly increasing my running. My tally for last week was 9 miles (in 3 runs), which was actually my most in a week since my surgery. Kind of pathetic, but I'm still moving ahead.

My knee was a little swollen yesterday, which is a bit of a worry. I had gone to the gym the night before, and had upped the weight on my leg press, so I suspect that's the culprit. I had also done a treadmill run, but it was short & not particularly fast, so doubt that did it.

With the snowstorm coming tonight, I will dust off the xc skis and I'm looking forward to getting out tomorrow for a bit of a ski.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

long run

I did my longest run since my surgery today - 4.6 miles. The knee didn't bother me at all, and I didn't feel too bad.

Here it is in Nike +:

So, I will continue to inch up on the miles. Perhaps another race in January or February.

I'm planning a few days of skiing at Jay Peak in northern Vermont at the end of the month, which will be a good test for my knee. Prior to my surgery, skiing really perturbed the knee (lots of swelling) so I hope it will be a different story now.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Thanksgiving Race, 2009

I ran in the Boston Volvo Village 5K today. I would characterize it as real struggle - I really felt out of shape & like I was struggling the whole time. When a guy near me started walking at about the 1 mile mark, I was very tempted to join him.

I finished in 23:37, my 2nd slowest 5K every (on the plus side, it was 1:23 faster than my race last month, my slowest ever). So, I think I need to get some miles into the legs before trying another race.

It was a pretty good turnout for the race - over 1100.

It was 20 years ago that I ran one of my more memorable races, the Feaster Five of 1989, which took place in a blizzard. I recall driving over the race, slipping & sliding on the unplowed roads. I assumed I'd get there and find the race was canceled, but there were several hundred other crazy souls. I recall that it was difficult to decide whether to run in the deep snow, or in the tracks from the few cars that had been on the roads, although the tracks were quite slippery. As I went around a corner onto the last straightaway, I actually slipped & fell pretty hard, but the snow was deep & soft, so no harm done.

Thursday, November 19, 2009


I was concerned to notice my knee was a little swollen last night. It didn't hurt, but this is the first time I've noted swelling in a while.

I've been very active over the last 4 days while on a mini-vacation in Tennesee. I did a 21 mile backpack over 2 days on moderately demanding terrain, and then did a _little_ trail running yesterday while on a hike.

I had planned to do a treadmill run this am at the hotel, but decided to skip it when the swelling developed.

The last time I had selling was after a 300 km bike ride in June. That was similar to this: no real pain, but it makes me worry that all is not well in there.

Anyway, I'm still planning to try a 5 km race on Thanksgiving, so we'll see how the knee reacts to that.

Saturday, November 7, 2009

A Good Run Today

I had a pretty encouraging run today. I did a little 3 mile loop I've been doing recently, and ran it almost 2 minutes faster than I did last week. For whatever reason, I felt decently strong while I was running. I think that's the first time I can say that since starting back this year.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

a look back at October

Well, the positive is that October was my highest mileage month since my surgery in April, 2007. But it was only 20 miles, so obviously I'm not too far along on the road to being in shape. I am planning to run a Thanksgiving race (perhaps the Boston Volvo 5K, which I have run before), so I'd like to get those miles a bit higher.

I think I'm going to head out on my bike this am for a ride - I ran yesterday, and I'm kind of avoiding running consecutive days for now.

Sunday, October 11, 2009

Back on track

My back seems OK now. Just a bit stiff, but not enough to bother me.

I ran 3.2 miles tonight, which is my longest since starting back to running. Felt OK, but still not fit. While I ran, I wondered how it was that Papelbon couldn't get any of those last five guys out...

Wednesday, October 7, 2009

Moving forward

My back is almost better. I still have a little stiffness, but nothing like last week. I went for a jog this am, and my back didn't bother me at all. I'm going to try a "long run" this weekend, a long run for me right now being more than 5K.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Back Pain!

I haven't been able to run since the race on Saturday because of back pain.

I had a bit of a cold, and on Monday am I was coughing and suddenly felt pretty significant low back pain. A pulled muscle.

It remains pretty bothersome 2.5 days later. Quite stiff, especially if I don't take ibuprofen.

I'm guessing I may be out of commission for another week.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Race - Komen 5K

Well I'm sitting on the deck in my back yard enjoying the nice sun after the Komen 5K today.

I was pretty happy with how it went. I ran 25:00 (strip time). Since I knew I'm really not in shape, I lined up pretty far back at the start. Probably too far back, since I wound up doing a lot of weaving and slowing to get around slower runners. Because it was a very big field (2,000 +), things never really thinned out, which in some ways helped (I was passing other runners most of the way).

I believe that time is a "personal worst" for me for 5K, but now it's going to be a personal best, as I'm starting up a new set of post-surgery PRs. I did not get any splits on the course; if there were mile markers, I did not see them.

I didn't have any knee pain, although I was a aware of the knee, with a kind of slight stiffness/lack of fluidity. I really can't say if that's just 3 years away from running, or that the knee isn't quite right.

So, my plan at this point is to try to do 2 or 3 runs a week for the next month, and then maybe try another 5K some time in October.

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Return to Running

I am entered in the Komen Race for the Cure 5KM in Boston in 2 days, on September 24th.

This will be my first race since November, 2006, and my first race since my big knee surgery (an autologous chondrocyte implantation (ACI) of the patella and trochlea in April, 2007).

I fully anticipate I will run a "personal worst" since I really haven't run much at all since I was given the OK by my surgeon to try some running at my 2 year followup visit this past April.

Indeed, my longest run has been 5K last Saturday (so at least I know I can make it 5K).

Having run competitively or semi-competitively from age 15 to age 46, I've really missed it.

But I also have some anxiety about it, since I'm by no means sure I'm really going to be able to successfully return to running.

So, I've decided to share my story in this blog. I'm hoping it may be of interest to others who may be trying to return to athletic activity after a surgery, and injury, or just a long layoff.