Monday, August 24, 2015

Theft

Last weekend I got up on Saturday morning and decided to try to run in Lebanon Hills. The last time I tried Lebanon I was hobbled for a couple of days but this time I was hoping for a different outcome.

Anyway when I went out to my car, I noticed the gas door was open and the driver side door wasn't completely closed, no big deal I figured I must have just been a hurry when I got home on Friday. I drove over to Lebanon and had decided to wear my Altra Repetitions figuring that they would be nice and stable and hopefully protect the knee and foot. Turns out I was wrong, I had significant knee pain and then foot pain too. Oh well, when I got back to my car I started to reach for my flip flops that Karyn had gotten me (they work great for the PTT) when I noticed that they were gone. Then I checked the center consoles where I had a few singles in one and a $5 dollar bill in the other one. At least I thought I did, then I noticed that there were only my work shoes in the front seat,

Then it clicked, someone had taken stuff out of my car while it sat in our driveway on Friday.

My net loss was $7 in cash, 2 pairs of running shoes and the flip flops.

So be on the lookout for my Brooks Pure Cadence 3, Blue with ~125 miles on them. I loved these shoes, I ran Minneapolis, Med City and 16 miles at Grandmas and was planning on running my fall marathons in them.
Brooks PureCadence 3 Minimalist Running Shoes (For Men) in Caribbean Sea/Black/High Risk Red
My second pair only had ~50 miles but they had caused knee pain previously and I had just added them back into the rotation with the thought that their stability might help he foot.
What a bummer, so I called the Rosemount police to be on the lookout for my shoes.

I replaced my shoes with some low cost options from RunningShoes.com clearance but they didn't have my Pure Cadence 3's. So I will be looking to get a pair before TCM, as I want them as an option in case the other ones don't work.

So I guess the lesson should be, leave my old shoes in the front seat and make sure I lock my car :-).

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Grandmas Marathon

Grandma's Marathon
I went into the 2015 Grandmas with no concerns about finishing just a big question on what my pace would be and what time I might get.

We did our new tradition for Grandmas, camped at Pattison State Park just south of Superior. It's quite cost effective and low key. Again this year, the forecast was for rain. That's getting to be a tradition. Anyway, we originally were coming up on Thursday but with a lot going on at work for both Karyn and me, we decided to just come up Friday morning. We arrived at Pattison, quickly got our camp up and then went to the DECC for packet pickup and spaghetti.

As always the DECC was packed with folks for the expo and packet pick-up but I endured the crowds and we enjoyed the spaghetti one more year. Karyn and I discussed multiple options for the race, she originally was going to sign-up for the Irvin, realized she was too late, thought about taking the train to the start, again too late. So she said she would drive me to the start line. It worked out great as we were able to go into Two Harbors, use the rest room and get some coffee and do the last few things before the start. It had started to rain and it looked like the thunderstorms were going to cause delays. The person at the coffee shop said the lake would push the storms south so we would be good for the race. I went ahead and had Karyn drop me off, thankfully we had a cheap poncho in our camping supplies, it kept me somewhat dry as the rain became more intense. All I did was wait in the pouring rain in the restroom line right up to the start. That's the nice part of being a back of the pack runner, no reason to push up through the crowd.

The race started and I was enjoying how much better I felt than the year before, I had some foot pain but no knee pain and with the marathons in May, I had confidence in my fueling strategy. So I just kind of cruised through the miles and the rain. I saw Karyn a couple of times and asked her to bring my other shoes so that I could try switching to reduce or change the pain in my foot. I have come to really like the Brooks Pure Cadence's which were the shoes I wore in my previous 3 marathons. I had recently bought a pair of Kinvara's as I thought they might make a decent alternative and I picked them up for $37.99, who could pass up that deal :-). In a training run right before Grandmas I discovered that the Kinvaras change my foot pain so I was hoping that switching to dry shoes and different pain would get me to the finish a bit quicker.

Image result for navicular bone and posterior tendonTurned out that they helped by changing the pain, but pain is pain so they didn't help me out too much. I made my way onto London Road had my traditional beers and then worked my way to the finish. Along London Road, I decided getting the MRI for the foot was going to happen as I needed to find out what was going on. I can't remember what if anything I have posted about the foot but the pain is in the arch, right where the Posterior Tibial tendon attaches to the Navicular bone in the foot. My Doctor., said it was either a nasty case of tendinitis or a navicular stress fracture and getting the MRI to let him diagnose it was my best option. I told him I would deal with it after Grandmas. Anyway, I slowed down quite a bit along London road right before Lemon Drop and then the pain equalized so I was able to pick up my running with the same amount of pain as walking so I decided to run again and I meandered my way to the finish.

Afterward, we went to Sammy's for pizza, our long time tradition, run the marathon and then swing in for some pizza at the downtown Sammy's. Never a wait and nothing tastes as good after a marathon then a slice of Sammy's and a cold beer.

Overall, I was happy with my day, and although my time was slow, it was my fastest Grandmas since 2004.

Sunday, May 31, 2015

Minneapolis Marathon

My third marathon in May is complete and it went well.

Turned out to be the fastest of the three (albeit still a very slow time for most runners) and was probably the hardest of the 3 courses. I was again using the Galloway run-walk approach of 60-60 and it again worked well. I lost a few minutes in the last 2 miles but that was more due to the foot as I couldn't run down hills on it. My splits were pretty consistent so this method is working and my recovering is quick as evidence of running Med City last week and running consistently today.

Although I did say I wasn't going to discuss injuries this year, this is not the same issue I had last year with my plantar, I believe it's a return of posterior tibial tendinitis or it could be the tibialis anterior tendon. The good news is I taped it with KT tape this week after Med City and it seemed to help. It is quite tender at the attachment point to the foot near the medial cuneiform (I think). I may go in and get it looked at to see if there is anything I can do to get pain free ahead of Grandmas

Back to Minneapolis, what an enjoyable marathon. The volunteers were great but the course is what I enjoyed (see map and elevation profile below). Considering the cancellation of last years event, this year was a nice recovery by Team Ortho and did I mention how perfect the weather was this year, blue sky, mid 40's at the start, low 60's at the finish. I also think it's a decent value, you pay ~$80, you get a jacket (picture from the website) which is pretty nice and are running through a major city which adds a bit of cost. Although I still don't like that they hand out a finisher's jacket ahead of the race and I believe sell them at the expo. Can't blame them for wanting to make some money but then I would prefer it to not say finisher, anyway it's a nice participant jacket.



The marathon starts in Theodore Wirth, heads north through Victory Memorial parkway, meanders over 94 and the river,snakes through North Minneapolis, through St. Anthony, through the U of M and then down east River road, over the Franklin bridge to west river road and down to Minnehaha Park where we turn around, staying on West River road, cross over the Franklin avenue bridge to East River road, back towards the U of M then cross over the Northern Pacific bridge (nice view from there of the river) and end up finishing in Gold Medal Park.

MM15 Technical Course Map

MM15 M Elevation

Tuesday, May 26, 2015

Data doesn't lie

I was lamenting my recent marathon times trying to figure out how I can get back to running sub 5 hrs or even a little over 5 hrs when I chose to do a little data analysis, here goes.

Key data points:
Image result for cartoon images of data analysis1st marathon - 1993 at age 35, weight ~185
1st knee surgery - 1999 at age 41, weight ~194
2nd knee surgery -2003 at age 45, weight ~205

23 Marathons run from 1993 through 2003
Average time - 4:38
Fastest time - 4:02 (1st and 3rd marathon)
Slowest time - 5:22 (after knee surgery)
Lowest weight - 180
Max weight - 205 (after 2nd surgery)

20 Marathons run from 2004 through 2015
Average time - 5:43
Fastest time - 5:03 (lowest weight)
Slowest time - 6:27 (after plantar rupture)
Lowest weight - 208
Max weight - 230

Image result for running images with quotesSo the knee surgeries did ultimately hurt as did running through injuries and I was 10 years older but the bottom line is weight may be the key issue. It may not come as a surprise but during my first 10 years of running marathons I more often got to the start line injured, many of which should have kept me from running the event. So all things considered, if I want to get faster, the best option would appear to be to drop 30+ lbs and then see what happens.

My plan for this year has been to work on weight and I have dropped a few pounds but my main focus has been on running marathons without causing new injuries. I have had some success but have a few nagging issues that I am working through. My current weight is around 227 down from probably a peak of 235 and I am planning to be at 222 for Grandmas and 212 by TCM.

My actual plan is to drop 35 lbs by 4/1/2016. I set that goal this past April when I realized that my losing weight by running wasn't working and my metabolism probably needed a boost to get things working well. I tend to accomplish things I write down and now by posting it in my blog I am pretty sure I will follow through.

Stay tuned for future updates in the coming weeks.

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