Monday, December 31, 2012

Broken foot - probably out for season

It wasn't a mere stress fracture, but a clean break near the base lobe of the 5th metatarsal, mid right foot.   It's called an 'avulsion fracture' of the 5th metataral.  (It is not the more serious "Jones fracture").

My mother had this same fracture, nick-named "dancer's fracture".

Why did it happen?

1)  My running mechanics put huge stress on the outside of my foot.  I contact the ground on the outside of the foot - directly on the 5th metatarsal.

2) It was very cold when I was running.

3) I train on the track exclusively in spikes.  They have no padding, and just one thin pair of socks.

4) There likely was already a small stress fracture I wasn't aware of.  I had been aware for a long time of 'sore feet' ... and there already was some damage most likely.

UPDATE: I went back an examined my spikes.  I may have stepped on something.  Near the point of injury I found a wad of what looked like hard clay in my spike.  It was a big wad of chewing gum which had turned hard as stone on the track.  That may have done it.


It may not have happened if I weren't training in spikes.  Or possibly it might have because of the force of the peroneal tendon pulling on the metatarsal.   I don't know.

I love training in spikes, especially with water on the track.  It can run faster, keep better form and have more fun.   I won't be able to do that much anymore.

All that work since October, in the shitter.

I can't open my xray CD on my Mac, but here is an xray similar injury.  Should be 4-6 weeks before I can think about running.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Injury update

This injury may be more serious.   I'm thinking it is a stress fracture since it hurts more to simply put weight on the foot than to elevate in a toe raise.  I can barely walk.

Since tomorrow is the last day of the year, I am going to go to the hospital since my 2012 deductable has been met and the rates go up Jan 1.   Totally sucks since I'm right in the middle of a vacation on the mountain.

I could be out for the season.

: (

Saturday, December 29, 2012

workout cut short - injury

Here's a new one - a strain of the peroneus brevis tendon in the right foot near the attachment point on the metatarsal.   It's never happened before so I don't know how serious it is.  It may put me out of the meet next weekend.

Conditions were brutal at the Dean Hayes track today. At 3:40 pm, it was in the low 30ºs and snowing, with a brisk wind making it feel much colder.  There was standing water on the track and it was blustery dark and foreboding.  I still ran in short tights and long sleeve tech tee... putting the sweats back on after the rep.

I was halfway through a 4 x 500m workout when I felt something on the outside edge of my right foot on the homestretch of my second 500m.   I thought I had stepped on something.  After crossing the line, the right foot began to hurt and I hobbled along wondering WTF?

Why did it happen?  I think it was weakened by slight ankle sprains while hiking.  And... probably because I neglected my calf stretches and have not been doing calf raises or stairs lately.   Really sucks.
800m warmup, stretches, drills 
Saucony spikes on 
2 x 500m - 83.5, 84

It felt good while it lasted.  Bad day.   Will know more by Monday.  I'm dubious, it hurts to walk, I don't expect to sprint anytime soon.   I have a few days to decide whether or not to register for the 1/5 meet.  It's expensive... $43 - even for one event.

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

cold and slow

I put in a consecutive day on the track at my old high school in upstate NY to get in a workout before the coming snowstorm.   I didn't want to do much today so I tried to run faster...  but again, pretty slow.

Granted, conditions were extreme, about 24º, and crusty ice on some of the track.   Running in long tights and a light fleece over a long sleeve tech tee.  Why I expected to be able to run faster I don't know... it's still December.
    800m warmup, stretches, drills 
     saucony spikes on 
     3 x 400m - 61.5, 63.5, 68
Just remembering the good old days last July when I turned 3 x 400m all under 60.  I'm going to have to do more negative split 300s, 400s, and do some 200m tempo endurance workouts.   I'm a little heavy, 142.8  - from being around family and bread.

The snow storm here in NY has begun.  Good thing I didn't plan on racing tonight at the Armory.

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Christmas 600s

Twas the morning of Christmas, 
and all across the track, 
snow was covering ... so, 
I got a broom and came back.

At my alma mater high school track, Susquehanna Valley in Conklin, NY, it was a gray 27º with a cold north  breeze.   I was actually worried that someone would see me sweeping snow off the track and ask me WTF I was doing.    I cleared a 10" wide path in lane one.    After spending 15 minutes of sweeping an inch or more of snow off lane one, I started my warmup.  There were still patches of ice in spots, but the spikes kept me from slipping.

It was so cold that I decided not to run fast... about a 72 sec 400m pace.  I did a quantity foundation work.

800m warmup, stretches, minimal drills 
Saucony spikes on 
5 x 600m  - 1:51, 1:53, 1:55, 1:57, 2:02 
300m - 50
It made for a memorable Xmas morning.  We're expecting a major winter storm on Wednesday night so I may go back out tomorrow... if I don't have to sweep the track again.  If not tomorow, I probably won't be able to train again until Saturday evening in Sewanee.   If the weather is bad, I may be forced inside to run at Murphy Center.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

500s in mountain drizzle

43º felt warm today at Sewanee's Coughlan track. There was intermittent drizzle and a light breeze.  By the third 500, I was down to my sleeveless net tee and short tights.

No 'one-upsmanship' today.   Disappointed at the times.  I averaged about 2 seconds slower than my goal time and previous best 4 x 500m workouts.

I've trained at Sewanee a lot over the past few years... I wonder why I have NEVER seen a member of the college track team working out here?   Probably explains why I beat all their 400m guys last year.

I finished my warmup and started my first 500 just as the 12 o'clock bells were ringing - on this eve of Christmas eve.

600m warmup, stretches, drills 
saucony spikes on 
4 x 500m - 81, 83.5, 86, 88 (avg 84.6)

I guess I may have lost some foundation in the week off.  Maybe I need to go back to 600s?  Maybe 'father time' is catching up with me?

It's going to be hard to find a place to train in Conkin with snow expected but I'll bring my stuff just in case.  I hope to be on the track at least twice next week.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Cold and quiet

4:00 pm on Sewanee's Coughlan track was clear, breezy, and cold with temperatures about freezing ... and falling.  I welcomed seeing another soul on the track during my usually solitary endeavor.   The elderly jogger left after just a few laps leaving me the track to myself.

It felt very cold.   I was forced to take off yesterday because of rain and 40-50 mph wind gusts and I was a bit tight from the previous days resistance, especially in the adductors and hip flexors.

Wearing 3 1/2 layers on top and 2 1/2 on the bottom, I shed down to run in long tights and a longsleeve technical shirt with gloves.  I rarely run in long tights so it felt a little restrictive. Honestly not sure if I did 5 or 6 reps ... I'll call it 5.
600m warmup, stretches, drills 
Saucony spikes on 
5 x 300m - 45, 45, 45, 46.5. 47.5
The last one was exhausting, not as fast as similar workouts... but it felt hard, possibly moreso since I didn't eat a meal today before the workout.  It was so cold that my hands were frozen just in the time it took to untie my spikes, put my shoes on and get dressed.  Hands hurt while thawing in the car.  It was pretty brutal.

This is the shortest day of the year, sunset at 4:35.   I like working at sunset to minimize sun exposure.

It sure is a quiet and solitary ritual.  I plan my day around this solitary ritual.   Coach Page says its those that train alone are usually the nut cases.  Hmmm...  I am feeling pretty dark on this longest night of the year.

Every thing feels fine, except not feeling very fit.  Weight is good, 140.4 after workout.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Back on track

Sunset on the Dean Hayes was a clear, pleasant 55º and falling, with a light breeze.  Members of the track team were just leaving when I got there.  I had an appetite for work today since the 9 day lay off, but after a little taste of pain in a swift 600m, my appetite subsided.   It was harder than it looks on paper.  Harder than usual.
600m warmup, stretches, drills 
Saucony spikes on 
600m - 1:42 
500m - 85 
400m - 62 
300m - 46
Looking at previous 'ladder down' workouts, today was a bit slower than one from season peak last April, but faster than one last March.

Still need both quality and quantity.   This one leaned toward quality speed endurance as I took longer rest intervals and tried to keep up the speed.   Resistance tomorrow.

Inventory - My weight is good - 140.4 after workout, everything feels fine.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

2013 season

My tentative 2013 schedule is beginning to take shape.  (see sidebar)

Locally, I have a total of 5 possible college indoor meets, and 3 college outdoor meets.  In addition, if I want to drive 2+ hrs to Birmingham, I could do another March meet outdoors.   If I can get permission (which is very doubtful), I could compete in the SAA (NCAA Div III) outdoor conference championship meet which is being hosted by Sewanee on April 27.   I'm definitely not doing the Penn Relays this year.

The new SAA is a good conference for me to compete in.  Small meets, performance level where I won't finish last, etc...  The only problem is that besides Sewanee, the colleges are 2+ to 6 hrs away (KY, GA, MS, AL).   The closest venues are Birmingham AL, Danville KY, and Memphis TN.

If I decided to not go to the Masters National Indoor meet, the Vanderbilt Black and Gold meet is that same weekend.

So, a total of 8 LOCAL college meets this season (including last weekend's MTSU meet).  A few optional out of town meets, and then in May-June, the Senior Games district meets, some state meets and all-comers meets.   Masters Nationals July 11-14 in Kansas.  That's an early end to the season compared to last year.   (I'm not really interested in doing the National Senior Games in late July).

I'm thinking I'll probably do somewhere around a dozen meets this year - compared to 17 in 2012, and 15 in 2011.

Ranked 14th in World

The World Masters Rankings are almost complete for 2012.   I ranked 14th in the M50 400m.

After taking 3 days off, I'm ready to get back into some resistance training.   The groin was sore for 2 days.

I saw this photo on line, don't know where it was taken but it reminds me of what some winter training will be like... kinda like St. Andrew's 6-lane track in Sewanee.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Meet Report - MTSU Christmas Invitational

Decent start.  Better than last year.  

57.76 - 400m
25.61 - 200m

The best thing is that I have no strains or even a hint of an injury. We'll see how I feel tomorrow.

It was my 4th fastest 400m time indoors and my 4th fastest 200m indoors.   I was pretty spent after the 400m and knew I wouldn't have much for the 200m only 70 min later.    It felt pretty good overall. Very fatiguing in the 400m but no serious rigging.   Considering I ran a 59.00 on this track on 1/21/12, I'm doing OK.   I was far more fatigued in those two January races where I ran about 59  (heh.... I even thought the timer made a mistake, I was so slow).

I entrusted my camera to bystanders to take photos of my starts.  Both failed miserably.   I did get a photo of my heat in the 200m, but not with me in it.   I had lane 6 and had already left the blocks.

My backup pair of Puma Bolts performed perfectly.   I didn't lose any spikes or crowns like I did Thursday doing starts.

Next week, I'm going to take some time off from the track and do some sorely needed resistance and 'pre-hab'... I want to run the 55m in Feb and don't want any more hamstring issues.

As expected, I finished last in both events, but not embarrassingly far behind.   I was happy to participate, it was exhilarating.   I left with a smile and no injuries, good to see my 'track family' again.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Pre Race Day - first meet of the season

Tomorrow, I'll run for the first time in an indoor track meet in December.

The MTSU Christmas Invitational will have 5 teams.   I'm far from fit but if I can get my mind right, I should be able to manage a 58... I hope.   I will most certainly finish last, as this is an NCAA Division I meet.  Slowest 400m time last year was 56.   The 57.40 I ran at MTSU was my second fastest time indoors.  So, who knows.   Last year I also ran a 59.00 in my first meet at MTSU.  Wow, that was discouraging.  Hope to not repeat that.  It's hard to keep pace when those 49sec 400m guys blow by me in the first 100m.  Probably be better to start inside so I run alone.  Anything but lane 1.

Have had a lingering slight upper quad/hip issue so I may not run the 200m.  I'll see how I feel after the 400m.  It'll be cool to be under the starting gun of my friend and fellow masters sprinter, Randall Brady.

Looking forward to it.   Results by mid afternoon Sat.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Indoor with the team

I worked with the MTSU track team today, did some 300s, 200s, and gun starts.  

Everything felt pretty good, but I can tell I'm not in top shape.

I've felt some minor aches but nothing serious.   I'm going to sign up for the 400m and 200m, but may scratch from the 200 if I feel any strains.

I showed and explained to Coach Hayes and Coach Kelly the principles and technique behind the 'animal start'.   They were both underwhelmed.

Mile warmup, stretches, drills 
Walmart training shoes on 
300m and 2 x 200m with team - untimed 
back up Puma Bolt spikes on 
4 gun starts at the 400m start line with team
The back up pair of Pumas is unable to hold crowns in a few spike holds due to stripping (that's why I bought a new pair for Nationals).  I may use them anyway without crowns in those holes or go to the Nike R3s for the meet.

Most remarkably, I am down to race weight... a loss of 7+ lbs in 3 days.
Post workout weight is 139.4.  I credit that to elimination of carbs for just 2 days and eliminating hunger by drinking cappuccino.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Meet list 2012 - season in review

When last season ended, I never made a reference page/summary of my 2012 season in review.  So, here it is.  PRs in red.:


1/7 - TSU Ed Temple Invitational
  • 400m - 58.93
  • 200m - 26.12
1/21 - MTSU Invitational
  • 400m - 59.00
  • 200m - 26.22

1/29 - TSU Invitational
  • 400m - 57.57
  • 200m - 26.25
  • 55m - 7.47

2/11 - MTSU Valentine Invitational
  • 400m - 57.40
  • 200m - 25.83

2/25 - Sewanee Invitational
  • 55m - 7.32
  • 200m - 25.55

2/2 - Mason Dixon Games
  • 55m - 7.32
  • 200m - 25.78
  • 400m - 57.84

2/16 - Master Indoor Nationals, IU
  • 400m - 55.90 (indoor) Gold Medal
  • 60m semi - 7.98
  • 200m semi - 25.54
  • 200m final - 25.43 (indoor) Fourth


2/24 - Vanderbilt Black and Gold meet
  • 400m - 55.79
  • 200m - 25.50

4/7 - Governors Invitational Austin Peay
  • 400m - 55.14
  • 200m - 24.94

4/17 - Boston Moon TSU
  • 400m - 55.77
  • 200m - 25.13

4/20-21 - Vanderbilt Invitational
  • 200m - 25.05
  • 400m - 56.36

4/27 - Penn Relays
  • 100m - 12.17
  • 4x100 w/GPTC - 6th
  • 4x400m w/GPTC - Silver Medal

5/1 - Senior Games District Meet - TN Tech (hand time)
  • 400m - 55.55 
  • 800m - 2:23.61
  • 100m - 12.00
  • 200m - 24.97

5/5 - Senior Games District Meet - Nashville (hand time)
  • 100m - 11.94 (injury)

6/10 - NC State Meet
  • 100m - DNF (injury)

7/14 - TN State Games
  • 400m - 56.61

8/3-5 - Masters Outdoor Nationals - Lisle, IL
  • 400m semis - 55.81
  • 400m final - 55.48 - Silver Medal
  • 200m semis - 24.88
  • 200m final - 25.10 - 5th Place
  • 4x400m relay w/GPTC - Bronze M30

2012 total:
17 meets, 41 races (inc. one DNF and 3 relays).

Compare with last season:
2011 - 15 meets, 28 races

2012 - all new PRs (2011)
400m -  55.14 (55.54)
200m - 24.88 (25.26)
100m - 12.17 (12.26)
55m - 7.32 (7.43)

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Event run, 400m trial

A cloudy warm and breezy day at the Sewanee track this morning.   I ran fast despite some sore quads.... but not real fast.  A little disappointing.

I set a 'high bar' pace at near PR:  100m splits at 13,14,14,15 = 56.   Of course I came up short... somewhere between 57.5 and 58 as near as I can figure.  It reminded me how painful this race is ... and often begs the question, "Why am I killing myself?'

I nailed the first two splits and fell about 1 second off on the second two 100s.

1000m warmup, stretches, drills 
Saucony spikes on 
400m event run from blocks - 57.75 (27/31)
2 x 100m from blocks on the curve   
I shouldn't be surprised I'm so slow.   I'm heavy, about 143+, and I haven't done much quality speed endurance work.   I really need to do some negative split 400s and some race pace 300s.

My best at MTSU indoors in 57.40.   I think a reachable goal would be to simply break 58 in this first meet on Sat.  I won't run the 200m in this first meet.   Haven't done enough resistance work, so I feel a little injury susceptible for an all out 200m or 55m.  

It's been really warm.  I saw the team outside today training in a light rain.  I hope to get some gun starts on Thurs with the team.   Last day of school is Wed.

The season really doen't get into full swing until Feb., so it's still early.   There is only one meet in Jan.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

500s, breakin' out the blocks, ... and then some

The 'animal start'
Today was hard.

Not only did I run the fastest set of 500s ever, but I did a few fast 200s and 100s out of blocks, and then, hiked for 8 miles (2 1/2 hours) with friends... all before my first meal.

Didn't get home until just before sunset.

Beautiful day in Sewanee, mid 60sº, mostly sunny.  Happy to run shirtless.

700m warmup, stretches, drills 
4 x 500m - 80, 82, 82, 86  (82.5 avg) 
2 x 100m - from blocks, on the turn 
2 x 200m - from blocks - 27, 30

I took ample rest between the 500s.  About the same pace I was running last June.  Surprising since I am overweight.  The starts felt good, the so-called "animal start" allows me to get my lead foot really close to the line.  The whole point is that I'm leaned very far forward and compensate by blasting out with an arm push, hence the bent arms.

The holiday eating caught up with me and I weighed 144 this morning out of bed, but burned so many calories today.   Wow, fish and lettuce never tasted so good.  Rice crackers with preserves and tea for dessert while watching a great sunset.

My ankle is sore... I asked John yesterday if he wanted to hike today, he said no... then today he takes me on an 8 mile hike with no water.   I thought he was just going for a walk.   It was cool outside so I didn't mind.  A good calorie burn.   I went to bed weighing 146+ lbs and was 140.5 after workout and hike.

Brief speed workout and event run on Tues.  Starts with the team on Thurs.  Meet on Sat.  Will run the 400m, woulk like to run the 200m but don't want to hang around that long... want to get up to the mountain Sat eve.