Sunday, November 27, 2011

Coming along

I've started running again painlessly. It's a good thing too...considering the Hellgate 100k race is in two weeks. Needless to say, I'm a bit nervous about it but I'll give my best to the next two weeks. I'll train as hard as I possibly can for about 10 of those days and then make sure I'm well rested on Friday, December 9th at midnight when the race starts.

I'm mostly just relieved that I'm able to run with no problems now. This is due to an incredible amount of stretching, and no running. In all, I took 2 solid weeks with no running at all and that was the longest I've ever taken off.

On Thanksgiving, I ran the Turkey Trot in Fredericksburg. It was a 5k PR for me 17:56, which put me somewhere around 6th for my age group. The leaders were out there. Way out there and I didn't stand a chance.

As far as staying in shape during my no running time, I've been biking on a stationary bike and walking on a treadmill quite a bit. The treadmill was nice because i was able to find one that turned up to a 30% grade and so i was able to ascend a couple thousand feet in a relatively short, yet intense, period of time. Luckily, neither seemed to hurt my injury. And hopefully all that hiking will help me tackle the 13,500 ft of gain at Hellgate. Here's the elevation profile courtesy of
Keith Knipling.

We'll see how this goes...

-- Patrick

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Running injuries

Since I started running, I have to be grateful for the fact that I've been relatively injury-free. My miles to injury ratio has been very good. Unfortunately for me and every other runner out there; no matter what you do or how you run, sometimes you just get injured.

I started keeping a closer eye on my mileage and time spent running in recent months. Before, I did this solely to keep track of the mileage I put on each pair of socks I was testing for Smartwool. In the month of September, I took 19 days off. The vast majority of the mere handful of runs I did go on were far under an hour. And lasted fewer than 5 miles at a time. I can't remember taking that many days off since....ever.

Enough complaining. The good news is that I believe the break is good for me. You can't possibly improve all the time. Training and fitness rises and falls and this will probably give my body a good break so I can come back and train hard.

Who knows...maybe I'll run across some other country in the next couple of years.

Random picture of running in Moab last spring

-- Patrick

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Back in action?

Since Grindstone, my running has been sporadic at best. I developed a bit of an IT band issue and it has caused me to take a few more days off than I would like. The good news is that cycling and weight lifting doesn't hurt and it doesn't seem to irritate it.

My brother introduced me to rolling my legs and IT band with a roller and it seems to work really well. Well enough to run a spur the moment 5k in Fairfax on Saturday and win. That was kind of cool. But unfortunately, the band hurt pretty badly afterward.

I have been in Steamboat Springs, Colorado for the week for Smartwools sales meeting since Sunday.

They are releasing the socks that I tested during the cross country run next fall so they had me come out for the fun. It's been really cool out here. Plus, I've gotten a chance to see the new apparel coming out next year and it is crazy awesome. Smartwool definitely has athletes in mind when they are designing their clothes.

Plus PLUS, in my free time I've been able to run up the mountain of the ski resort since that's where all the meetings have been. I ran Sunday, Monday and Tuesday and all three days the IT band was pretty achy. I took Wednesday off but when I ran today I went faster and longer and there was no pain. Does this mean it's all healed? Probably not. But I do think it's a step in the right direction.

In other news, I got into the Hellgate 100k in December. It'll be interesting to train hard while keeping an eye on my IT band.

-- Patrick