Saturday, July 22, 2023

About that Lemonade

 An update, turns out the Dr was not correct, I do not have a stress fracture but instead have a deltoid ligament injury and posterior tibial tendinopathy. He was glad he got the MRI results as the treatment is different, still not going to be running in the next week or two but will focus on PT, Ice, etc...., the good news is no boot for 4 weeks.

Since I was shut down from running, I have gotten in 6 bike rides and a walk, the good news is my Dr said I can resume walking (which was good since I did get one in) but only on level surfaces until everything is healed up. 

Does this change my decision for Twin Cities, probably not, but I will wait until my first PT appointment next Tuesday before making any changes to my race plans. 

Who knows if my pain is reduced I might be able to do it, after all it's only 26 miles 😉

Monday, July 17, 2023


I have gotten so out of the habit of posting (and yes I am pretty sure I am repeating myself) but decided to take a new approach, it won't be a daily or weekly post but they should happen a bit more often.

Why Lemonade?

Part of my issues for not posting as often is that it seemed like all my posts related to various injuries or other setbacks and were a bit depressing at least for me. Since I started this blog to capture my running plans and thoughts, it's time I broaden it out and capture other things besides running, don't worry I won't go into politics or at least not intentionally. With that in mind you will see I have changed the title from running to fitness.

But first back to running and another injury (a left medial malleolus stress fracture) this time I will be taking a different approach.

First my reality, I am 65 yrs old, retired, a bit overweight and my only real exercise for the last 20 to 30 years had been running, either trail or roads. I did broaden out after retiring and added walking and kayaking and pretty much removed trail running as my other injuries didn't allow it.

So with this in mind and my latest injury, I am planning on adding in biking, strength training, kayaking, pool running and other exercises that don't impact my ankle as I am expecting to be in a boot for around 4 weeks (this will be determined after a MRI tomorrow). 

Once the ankle is strong enough (or healed) I then plan to resume walking and then running but I will continue to keep the activities I add over the next 4 weeks and hopefully this unplanned opportunity will lead me to many more years of good health. 

As part of this change I will modify my running plans, Twin Cities marathon will not happen, since I am entered I will either transfer to another runner or switch to a shorter distance like the Loony or not run. I will switch the Mankato marathon to the 1/2 or shorter or not run. In the past I know I would still go for both.

And I am using something I had read a while back that I tried to apply to my work but never to my running or more importantly to my health and fitness, "7 Tips to Handling Adversity":

  • Take responsibility
  •  Be optimistic and think creatively
  •  Have courage and speak up
  •  Take the long view
  •  Maintain a sense of humor
  •  Get support
  •  Don’t quit

 And with that a new adventure begins.........................


Friday, October 28, 2022

Why I use Galloway - Spirometry results

I wanted to capture in my blog my issues with my breathing which dates back to January of 2018 when I got fairly sick and had a cough that was deep and hurt. After three or four days of 100+ fever, I finally went in to get it all checked out. The Dr did the normal checking, first listened to why I had come in then he looked at my ears and he asked if they hurt, I said not as much as my lungs and head. He said I had an ear infection, based on the ear he put me on antibiotics. A week or so later, I felt good enough so I went for a run and of course did a lot of coughing. We then went down to Florida for a vacation and when I tried to run with my wife I had to stop and walk after a minute of running as the cough and breathing basically stopped me from running. I recovered and tried to catch up, repeat, repeat, repeat. After we got home I tried to ramp my mileage up but the cough and breathing plagued me so I just did the Galloway run/walk but kept the running to no more than a minute. I also had a follow-up Dr appointment and he said it could just take a while longer, I asked if I had had pneumonia, he said probably but did not confirm it as with the ear infection he was giving me the same antibiotics he would have prescribed if I had it. 

I proceeded to run a few marathons over the spring and summer but my breathing and coughing never went away, only by using the Galloway method was I able to get through. I am sure my coughing was a bit bothersome to my fellow runners but I was able to finish. After Grandma's I was thinking I should get it checked out again as I had just had a brother die of lung cancer and a second brother was diagnosed with lung cancer. Over the summer and fall I was seen by many Doctors (Heart was ok) and finally saw a Pulmonary Dr who checked my lungs for nodes and tested my lung capacity. Based on my lung capacity results they put me on a maintenance inhaler (Arnuity Ellipta) as she expected my results for my age to be at 120% not below average even a bit and advised me to use the emergency inhaler (Albuterol) before I ran as she said I did have mild asthma, after a month on the maintenance inhaler, they retested and the results were only a bit better so she took me off of the maintenance inhaler. We discussed Vocal Cord Dysfunction (VCD) and Gastroesophageal reflux disease (GERD) causing acid reflux and/or Laryngopharyngeal reflux (LPR) since I wasn't having heartburn all the time as other possibilities and that sometimes it can take 6 or 9 months for fully recover. So she suggested using the emergency inhaler, taking a PPI and Singulair. 

For a while I thought all was improving but I noticed that things were getting worse so I went back in May of 2019, was retested, my results were below normal so they put me on Breo Ellipta, a different maintenance inhaler. I was also tested for VCD which was inconclusive and the person doing the test didn't think I had it but gave me some vocal exercises.

I know I may have posted some of this in the past but that wasn't the intent of this post, it was to document my Spirometry results and to show my current numbers so that I can track them more easier over time. 

So fast forward to 2021 and my plan was to get retested so I could be off of the inhalers. Here are those numbers:

So when the doctor saw that I was at 74% for FEV1, she said she did not want me off the inhaler. I was then retested in September of this year and here are those results:

My doctor was happy to see that I had improved from 74% to 85% which is now considered to be normal with medication. So progress but I am still not pleased as I would like to be normal without the maintenance inhaler and to be able to run for miles without the walking breaks. And this last table are the results of all of my lung function tests

So overall they may not mean a lot to anyone but I now have a place where I can find things faster. 

As to my running, I will continue to use the Galloway method as without it I am not sure I would be running, more on that later...........

Saturday, October 8, 2022

Twin Cities Marathon 2022

For this year's Twin Cities my only goal was to finish. I still had the taste of last years race and I wanted to get it behind me. 

Since I am behind on my posting on races, here's a quick summary of my 2021 prep for TCM events:

  • Knee surgery in mid June
  • Resumed running in mid July while doing PT
  • Ramped up mileage starting in late August into September
  • Ran the 10k/5k on Saturday before the marathon - the weather was very humid, temps in the mid 60's
  • Dropped at mile 18 breaking my Ultra Loony streak as I was having breathing issues and knee pain (humidity had drained me)
This year my training had gone a bit better having done Grandma's virtually in June but it wasn't until after that race that my knee pain got resolved. I then continued to add in distance and worked on refining my run/walk pace splits to where by the time October arrived I thought I was ready. My only concern at all was the 6 hr cutoff as you lose 15 minutes getting to the start although they do claim to keep the finish open to allow for that. It was still stressing me out though. Hopefully by next year, I will add more margin so that this cutoff becomes a don't care.

The day arrived and although the weather wasn't perfect (blue sky, almost no clouds and tempes going from 52 to low 70's) I was able to finish my 17th TCM, 70th marathon and 52nd marathon in MN just past my 65th birthday, I saw a lot of old friends along the way which made the day even better along with great support from my wife, my oldest daughter, granddaughter and future granddaughter and text support from my youngest daughter. 

Only issues were no electrolytes for a few aid stations in a row and of course this was the first time I was counting on it, oh well no harm done. I used the Galloway methodology, my splits were 20/40, run/walk through mile 18 and after 18 I allowed some extra walking to avoid the overheating. My breathing was pretty good throughout with no significant coughing issues. It was interesting to my HR stay higher than normal (Avg - 134, Max 150)  but I think that goes to the weather and the pace I was trying to hold for most of the race.

Here are a few pictures from the day. 

This is my view from corral 3 waiting on the start

Heading to the finish, then seeing my wife, daughter and granddaughter and onto the finish line


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