Sunday, December 19, 2010

Longest run since aci knee surgery

I ran 5.7  miles yesterday, which is my longest run since my surgery in 4/07.  Previously, my longest was a 5 mile race in July, which was kind of a disaster, as I felt awful.

Yesterday, I just decided I would go out and run 2.6 miles, then turn around & head home.  I wound up going a little further, since I was feeling OK.

A little ironically, my right knee (which is the good knee) was bothering me during the run, and it feels a little sore today.  The left knee is minimally sore.

I am picking up my new orthotics in 2 days, so I am interested to see how they work out.

I've decided to run a 5K race in Needham on New Year's Day.  Prior to that, I have 3 days of downhill skiing planned at Jay Peak on Dec 27/28/29.  That will be a good test for the knee.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Thanksgiving - Boston Volvo 5K

I toed the line today for the Boston Volvo 5K.  It was a bit cold at the start, right about at freezing.  The start was a bit odd; I heard no warnings, and suddenly we were running.  I wasn't even sure the race had started.  I have a little bit of a cold, and I felt a little sluggish on the small hill that starts the race.  I had intentionally tried to start slow, but still had a first mile split of 7:27 (this was from my Garmin; the race did not have any splits or mile markers!).  Second mile was 7:32, third mile 7:38, so I ran pretty evenly.  My finish time was 23:23 on my watch.  The official time was 23:59, but I lost some time at the start due to not starting right away.  This was slightly better than last year's time of 23:34.

This was my first race since turning 50.  I was 13th of 58 in the 50-59 age group.

My knee felt fine - I really wasn't aware of it.  What I took away from the race is that I need to train more to increase my fitness.  I'm not sure when I'll race again.  Perhaps some time in December.  I am planning to do the Weston Winter Duathlon in early January, which involves a 4K trail run/6K ski/4K trail run.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

a few small injuries

I didn't do much running this week due to an injury I incurred on my cycling vacation last week.  On the last day of the trip, I noticed a "cramp" in my right quad about 40 miles in.  It didn't go away; in fact, it got a little worse.  I was able to finish the ride (110 miles), but when I tried to ride again two days later, it was moderately painful.  So, it was a pulled muscle, not a cramp.

I took 5 days off, and when I ran 3 miles yesterday, it did not bother me.

I've also had an odd pain in my right foot for a month or so.  It's in the mid-foot area, more toward the top of the foot than the bottom.  Oddly, it doesn't really bother me when running or cycling.

I read an interesting article in the New Yorker about Al Salazar, Dathan Ritzenhein, and whether one's natural running form can be changed.  Well worth a read.

So, it's on to more running next week.  Hope my foot is OK with that.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

October update

I have not updated the blog in a long time, as I spend August/September/October concentrating more on cycling than running. This was because I decided to go on a cycling vacation to mark my 50th birthday after seeing this article in the Sunday NY Times.

The trip was great: the cycling was spectacular, and my knee seemed fine. As I type, my quads are moderately sore, so I think I will limit my running to a short jog later.

I am planning to run the Boston Volvo 5K race on Thanksgiving, although I may also try to find another 5k to try in the next couple of weeks.

Friday, July 9, 2010

July update

I ended up missing about 3 weeks of training after my pneumonia experience, and I still felt a bit weak for another week or two.

On 7/3, I ran the North Andover 3rd of July race.  It made me feel old in the sense that I ran in the first race back in 1979, so 31 years ago.  In those days, it was a 10K, and I ran a respectable 36:28 in 1979.  It was a whole different story in my 5K race in 2010, which was arguably my worst race ever: I ran 25:21, and felt dreadful doing so.  At about the 1.5 mile mark, I found myself walking, as I felt my legs just didn't want to continue.  While it was quite hot, I recognize that the main problem for me is a lack of fitness and not enough training runs.

I am signed up to run the Marathon Sports 5 miler in Weston on 7/22/10.  I'm a bit worried about that, as I have not yet run as far as 5 miles since returning to running (I think my longest run is about 4.7 miles).  I think my strategy will be to make my goal just to finish, rather than to try to race at all.  I'll run it at a very slow pace, and then push the last mile if I actually feel like I can.

My knee has not been feeling that great lately; it's a little stiff & sore.  I have not been doing any quad strengthening, so I think I need to get back to that and see if that helps.

Sunday, May 16, 2010


On May 4th, I abruptly got sick with a high fever (103.3) and total body aches.  I had a little bit of a cough.  I thought I had the flu (although I was a little surprised, since I got the vaccines this year and there really isn't much flu around).  I proceeded to spend the next 3 days totally incapacitated in bed.  When I still had a fever last Saturday (5/8), I thought that this probably wasn't the flu and started to wonder if I had pneumonia, so I went to the emergency department, where a chest xray confirmed that I did indeed have a pretty large left lower lobe pneumonia.

I missed a couple more days of work, but by Wednesday I felt moderately better, so managed to get through the rest of the work week.  At present, I'm still feeling more tired than usual, and have a very annoying cough.  I haven't done any exercise since the morning I got ill.  In fact, I feel a little short of breath if I walk at a fast clip, so I probably still have some recuperating to do.  I think I may start with a walk later today.

Looking at the bright side, I had very little appetite for a week, so shed the extra 10 lbs I've been carrying around for some time.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

Out of Shape

Just back from a (short) run, and I was really shuffling along.  It was perhaps the first semi-warm day of the spring (78 degrees).  I had done a 41 mile bike ride yesterday with a friend who is a lot fitter than I am, so it was at a quicker pace than comfortable for me (although he did 90% of the work on front).  At the end of the ride, I was pretty beat, and couldn't even stay on his wheel the last few miles.

So, I greet the month of May with a continued lack of fitness.

Knee surgery #4 has been scheduled for Friday, May 28.  I don't expect to lose any significant training time, as the doctor told me it would be maybe a week off running, and I'm guessing I might be able to bike in 24 to 48 hours. I'm very interested to see if my shin pain goes away when the screws come out.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

A Bit Discouraged...

I ran the BAA 5K today, and I'd have to say it did not go well.  I felt pretty unfit from the gun, and struggled to the finish in 23:53.  As I look back on it, I probably should have started a little slower, as I hit the mile in 7:13 and showed down from there.  The race started near the Boston Public library, then looped around the Common and back to the start area.  I felt so rotten I seriously thought about just stopping there, but decided that would just make me feel worse, so I continued to shuffle along.

My knee didn't hurt (although it feels a little stiff as I type this), but I guess I just am not running enough miles to expect to be able to race.

Having said that, I think I will try again on June 6 at the Schofield School 5K (my son attends Schofield).

Maybe the problem was the barefoot running.  The day before the race, I went to a barefoot running demo at City Sports in Boston, which featured Dr. Dan Lieberman of Harvard and Chris McDougal, author of Born to Run.  I recommend the book, if you haven't read it; it is a very good read.  I found the session very interesting, and we did go for a brief barefoot run.

Looks like nice running weather for the Boston marathoners tomorrow.  I am going to the Sox game, but will head over to the race course after to watch for some friends who are running.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

mid April update

I saw my orthopedic surgeon today.  I asked him about my screws, which have been bothering me when I run (seem to cause dull pain in my shin).  When he pressed on them, they really hurt, so we agreed that they should come out.  That will be a minor surgery (to be scheduled), making operation # 4 on the left knee.

I also asked him about upping my mileage, and he thought that was fine.

I had an xray done, which the doctor pronounced as "excellent", although of course the cartilage doesn't show up on an xray.  But the patellofemoral joint looks nice & normal.

I am planning to run the BAA 5k this weekend in the Back Bay.  Weather forecast is not looking so good right now, but we shall see what is actually happening in 2.5 days...

Sunday, March 14, 2010

I had a pretty good week running this week - I cracked the 10 mile barrier. Perhaps more importantly, my knee doesn't really hurt & isn't swollen. I am having some pain in my shin where my screws are, so I'm planning to ask my surgeon about removing them when I see him next month. I have signed up for the BAA 5K race the day before the marathon, so that's what I'm pointing for right now. I ran tonight in the wind & rain and felt a little sorry for those training for Boston who had to do a long run this weekend in these difficult conditions.

Monday, February 22, 2010

February update

I ran the Marathon Sports Super Sunday 5K on 2/7/10. It was not a good race for me, as I ran 23:59. This was my slowest 5K ever, discounting the Komen's 5K in Sept, where I did not really put out a full effort. My knee felt OK, so I think the conclusion to be drawn is that I'm just not in very good shape.

I did a 3 miler yesterday and felt like I was shuffling along very slowly.

So, my goal for March is to average 3 runs a week, which will - embarrassingly - be an upgrade in mileage.

Sunday, January 31, 2010

End of January Update

It's been a while since I updated.

Over New Year's weekend, I went skiing at Jay Peak in VT. The knee didn't react all that well, as I had swelling & stiffness. The conditions were very nice, as there was new snow. We were in the trees a lot, which is tough on the knees, as it's bumpy and quick turns are sometimes needed. So, it took about a week for my knee to feel OK again.

Then we went skiing over MLK Day weekend at Saddleback in ME. Great place to ski, by the way, although it's about 4.5 hours from the Boston area. Oddly, the knee felt better this time.

I didn't really run much in January - only 5 times. Not sure what to blame that on, although work has been pretty busy.

I am planning to run the Super Sunday 5k/10k in Boston (5K for me) next weekend. Will post an update after the race.