Saturday, December 31, 2016

Meet list 2016 - season in review

My annual summary.  2016 - a very good year!

USATF National Indoor Champion M55 400m
  •    55.22 - fastest M55 indoor 400m in World since 2008
USATF National Indoor Bronze Medal M55 200m 
  •   24.65 - ranked #3 in world M55 indoor 200m
World Record - 4x200m relay 1:40.22 (McGee, Chin, James, Yelverton)

USATF National Outdoor Champion M55 400m - 55.93

USATF National Outdoor Silver Medal M55 200m - 24.74

World Masters Championship: 6th 200m - 25.04

World Masters Championships - Gold Medal 4x100m relay (McGee, Thomas, Yelverton, Aurelien) - 45.15

Season PRs in Blue


1/10 - Nashville -  TSU, Ed Temple Classic (flat 200m)
  • 400m - 57.36 
  • 200m - 25.46

1/24 - Birmingham - Emory Invite
  • 55.91 - 400m

1/31 -Birmingham KMS Invite (200m banked Mondo)
  • 60m - 7.77
  • 200m - DQ FS

 2/12-13 - Vanderbilt Music City  (300m Mondo)
  • 200m - 25.36
  • 400m - 55.97 

2/20 - NYC Millrose Games - 2nd place, Masters 4x400m GPTC
  • lead off leg - 55.97 split

3/4-6 - Albuquerque USATF Masters Indoor National Championships
  • 400m - 55.22
  • 200m - 24.65
  • 60m - 7.77
  • 4x200m relay - 1:40.22  WR


3/19 - Atlanta, Emory Invite
  • 400m - 55.72

3/25-26 - Nashville - Vanderbilt Invite
  • 200m - 25.16 
  • 400m - 56.11

4/9 - Mt. Berry, Berry College
  • 200m - 25.12 
  • 400m - 57.56    

4/15 - Sewanee, Mt. Laurel
  • 200m - 25.18

5/7 - Atlanta - TrackLab, Emory
  • 100m - 12.42 

6/11 - KY Bluegrass Games - Centre College
  • 200m - 25.01
  • 400m - 56.16

6/18 - Atlanta SE Regionals
  • 200m - 25.43
  • 400m - 56.70

6/25-26 - Brentwood -TN State Finals
  • 200m - 25.22 
  • 400m - 55.78

7/14 - USATF Masters Nationals
  • 400m - 55.93
  • 200m - 24.74  

 9/17 - Nashville District meet
  • 400m - 57.1 (h) 

10/16 - Chattanooga District meet
  • 200m - 24.92 (h) 
  • 400m - 55.99 (h)

10/31-11/6 Perth, Australia WMAC World Masters Athletic Championships
  • 400m semi - 56.24
  • 400m final - DNF
  • 200m final - 25.04
  • 4x400m relay
  • 4x100m relay - 45.15

18 meets 
13 races indoor
27 races outdoor
40 - total races including relays

3 - 60m
2 - 100m (1 relay)
17 - 200m (2 relays, 1 DQ)
18 - 400m (2 relays)

2016: 18 meets / 40 races
2015: 12 meets / 30 races
2014: 19 meets* / 42 races) *not including 3 fall senior games meets

Friday, December 30, 2016

Hard day

Hard day because prior to my workout I spent 4+ hours working on my porch roof which entailed a lot of up and down ladders, stairs, moving a 300lb wood stove etc...  I also am running on empty, having not eaten today and very light yesterday, just some nuts and a little tuna.  So, my times were slow.

Nice day to train.  42º and sunny but there was a light wind.
Hoka trainers on 
300m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 600m - 1:49.5, 1:49 
3 x 300m w/ 2min rest - 49, 51, 53.5
I was really dragging my butt on the last 300m.  My feet hurt from all the walking I did in FL, several miles on Wed and some Thurs, and 25 min Stairmaster on Wed.  The first 600m was brutal but the second was better, easier.   So thankful for my hot tub right now.

Even after a light day of eating, I still weighed 148 when I got home last night.  But today, I've made a good dent in my fight against adiposity.  144.9 after workout.

Feel like I probably will not start my season at TSU next weekend.  Weather looks bad for Monday, so I may try to train on the track Sunday if I'm feeling it. It's getting warmer and wetter here next few days.

Monday, December 26, 2016

600s / tempo 200s

Nice 70º morning at the Villages HS track in FL.  A little more humid than I'm used to but fine.
Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 600m - 1:48.5, 1:49 
4 x 200m w/ 1 min rest - 31.5, 33, 34, 35
The 600s weren't too bad.  I didn't push them too hard and stayed at 72 sec 400m pace.  Being tired after the 600s, my 200s were hard and really slow.  It was the first tempo workout I had done this season and I am heavy.  Hard to keep up with my parents level of eating, hard to refuse good food and sweets.   Over all, a good hard 2000m workout.  Friday, I racked up 1800m.

Was 147 lbs after workout.  (inaccurate bathroom scale).

Next track workout will likely not be until Friday in very cold TN.  Temperatures will likely be about 40º.

If I want to, I could race in a college meet every weekend in Jan.  Not sure yet which races I'll do.

Saturday, December 24, 2016

Merry Christmas

Santa claus is coming to town...

He knows if you've been bad or good...

Friday, December 23, 2016

speed endurance ladder

In FL visiting my parents.  Not used to early morning workouts so I felt a bit weak.  Got a good solid workout in at the Villages HS, nice weather mid 60ºs calm winds.

Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
600m - 1:45.5
500m - 86 
400m - 66.5 
300m - 45.5

This was my 3rd track workout in 5 days + an evening weight and stairmaster workout, so it felt hard. times weren't too fast.  The 600 was a hair too fast, below my 1:48 target, so my 500 suffered.

Still feel heavy, but no accurate scale here.  Next track workout on Monday.

Wednesday, December 21, 2016

brief blast

Had just a little time on a beautiful day in Sewanee, 50º and calm winds, but increasing clouds.   I was on the track Monday, weights and Stairmaster yesterday, so I didn't want to do much.  Just one hard blast.
Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
800m - 2:30.5 (73, 77) 
3 min rest 
200m - 32
This was like a 'split 1000m'.   Was still recovering when I started the final 200m.

I'll be working out again on Friday, so this was light in order to save the foot.  What I haven't mentioned too much here is my every third day on the Stairmaster.  It's really a killer workout - doing the 20 min Hill program on level 16 (of 20).  I'm dripping sweat in 12 min.  I have sometimes stepped off in between hills for 5 seconds to take a drink, but no cheating, no elbows resting.  It's a good pump for the legs, good aerobic work and foundation.  It's comparable to running a brisk 2 miles.  Forget your treadmill and elliptical ...  good old fashioned Stairmaster is the gym workout.

If the 800m was at the end of the meet in Daegu, I'd consider running it.  It was 'low hanging fruit' in Perth (just 2:17 won Bronze).  I really would never want to train for an 800m.

Still heavy.  Woke up at nearly 149, 145.7 after workout.

Monday, December 19, 2016

more foundation

Cold.  28º, dark and breezy at the Sewanee track.   Just above the threshold of not being able to wear shorts.   Trained in short tights and a wind breaker.
Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
800m - 2:38 
600m - 1:52 
400m - 65.5
Not really fast times today.  My stride felt tight and tense, feet hurt, wind in the face on the home stretch, but I got it done.  Way too cold to run fast.  But, the 400m felt so mercifully easy after running 800s and 600s for the past week.

Was a bit heavier today.  I woke up at nearly 149 lbs, but after workout, was 146.0.  That is why it is hard for me to train in the early morning.  I'm really not 'empty' and at lowest weight until early afternoon.  I almost always eat my first meal of the day in the evening.

I may go out again on Wed. if I have time and my feet feel ok.  I stopped taking glucosamine, now I think I'll start again.

Friday, December 16, 2016

cold 600s

Dark, windy, and cold at the Sewanee track Friday afternoon.  38º but the wind and darkness made it feel much colder.  This was really the first 'winter workout' since I wore gloves and a wind breaker, but the usual short tights.  I usually only go to the long tights when it's below 25º or 30º and windy.   'Sun and no wind' at 23º feels warmer than 'dark and windy' at 35º.   I sheltered in my car between repeats.
Hoka trainers on 
300m warmup, stretches drills 
3 x 600m - 1:51, 1:49.5, 1:52
Slower than last time due to conditions.  2 of 3 straights into the wind.   15 min between.

Getting there, but have yet to ramp up to any real speed or tempo work.  Perhaps after Xmas.  144.3 lbs after workout.  Monday - next track workout.

Tuesday, December 13, 2016

600s in the mist

Gettin' it done today in the classic Sewanee mist/drizzle/fog ... known locally as 'mizzle'.   The fog was dense and by workout's end, visibility down to 30m.  Dark, wet, but not raining.  Thankfully not much wind and temperatures at t-shirt level 45º.
Hoka trainers on 
300m warmup, stretches, drills 
3 x 600m - 1:49, 1:48.5, 1:49
I did these with ample recovery so, not too bad.  I was going to do 4 but ran out of daylight and visibility.   I hit the 400m mark right around my target of 72 on these and I kept a very consistent pace of about 36 / 200m, all were about the same pace.   Faster than the 800s when I'm running 38-40 / 200m.  Keeping my long to short regime, at least a few more foundation workouts like this and then after Xmas, I'll start tempo intervals and speed work.  For now, I'm doing 3-day cycles of track - weights - rest - repeat.   That means just 2 or 3 workouts before I leave town for a week.  I only have access to a track on one day (23) the week I'm gone so I may be running on grass the rest of the time.
Seems like I probably won't be ready for the TSU meet on Jan. 8 but I may give it go just to see where I am.  The Vandy meet on Jan 14 is really the one I want to run but they are unpredictable about entry. With Nationals so early this yr, I need meets under my belt.  Here's a possible Jan

1/8 - TSU
1/14 - Vanderbilt
1/22 - Emory Crossplex
2/10 - Sewanee?

It would be nice to get one more but we'll see.  I could always run in Sewanee's Feb. meet on their 160m track... but that's always hard.  Probably too close to Nationals.

Weight is still high, 145.5 after workout.  Left foot is a whole lot better, right foot the same.

Most people would be inside by the fire ...

Sunday, December 11, 2016

Medal stand photo

I knew this photo was out there somewhere...

M50 4x100m World Champions

Saturday, December 10, 2016

Foundation 800s

Foundation work is always a bitch.  Especially 800m repeats.  No sprinters do these, although most would agree an aerobic foundation in the off season is necessary for an aged 400m masters.  Bill Collins certainly agrees.

Cold today, low 40ºs but sunny at the Sewanee track.  T-shirt weather for training.  
Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills  
3 x 800m - 2:38, 2:41, 2:48
It felt a bit better than last time and it wasn't too bad because I didn't push super hard and I took ample rest between, about 15m.

Looking back at my cycle between nationals and world this year, I did about 4 workouts of high volume 600 and 800 repeats, not as many as I did in '15, before going to shorter interval and tempo workouts.   Did more tempo workouts, they are the hardest.   I have less time this year.  Just 4 weeks before the first opportunity to race and 10 weeks before Nationals.

Planning to keep it to long foundation intervals for next week.  Two times on the track and 2 in the weight room.  I may do stadium stairs Thurs.  I'm hoping to ramp up but Xmas week I'm traveling and it will be difficult to find a track while out of town.    

My weight sucks.  Ranging 146-150.  Woke up at 147.8, 145.8 lbs after workout, but hadn't eaten anything all day.  My left foot is definitely recovering.  It's ok and I'm not taping or padding it at all except for heavy socks.  My right foot has the usual low level soreness.  Much better than I was in Sept. when this metatarsalgia reared it's ugly head.

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Beginning again

A nasty day at the Sewanee track, 47º and light drizzle, fog, dark, dank.  This would be just a rust buster, nothing serious, but I did what I set out to do.  Foundation workouts, my least favorite, are beginning.
Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
200m strider 
2 x 800m  - 2:38, 2:49
The first 800m hurt as I pushed it a bit.  The second one I just ran easy, wasn't too bad, but I needed full rest in between them.

In the past 4 weeks, I've been on the stairmaster, like last night, doing 20min; been on the bike including 2 ascents of Roark's Cove Rd., and some weights.  It's been a decent rest. Have gained 5 lbs, and I'm lingering around 146-148, actually down a few from my peak.  The metatarsalgia on my left foot is almost gone and the arthritis on my right is better, but not gone.

I hope to ramp it up and cross train a bit more before going back to a 3 to 4 day a week regime.  Probably be back out on Sat.  Colder weather is coming later this week, Sat. should be sunny in the low 40ºs.

It's been a crazy never ending season.  Outdoor Nationals - 15 weeks -  then World meet - 15 weeks, then Indoor Nationals - 4 weeks then Indoor Worlds.  I really wish the Perth meet was a month or 2 earlier.  It would have given me more rest.

Friday, November 18, 2016

Relays and inspiring performers in Perth

Inspiring ...

Some of the most inspiring performances came from the age group above mine, M60.  The World Champions in both the M60 200m and 400m were faster than the M55 Champions.  The freakishly fast Steve P. at age 63 ran 24.11 in the 200m ... he would have beat the M55 Champion by 2 steps and about 1.5 seconds faster than Bill C., M65 Champion, just 2 yrs older. The most inspiring to me was Gerhard.  New to the M60 age group, after losing out in the medals in Lyon by just a few hundredths, he had a spectacular meet in Perth.  Earning Bronze in the 100m, Silver in the 200m (24.63) and Gold in the 400m (55.03).  These times were much faster than he had run last yr as an M55.  His 400m time would have won M55 easily.  His 200m time was his fastest in 4 yrs.  This confirms to me that it is still possible to retain speed through the 50's and into 60.

Souvenir medals from the relays

4 x100m M50
It was nice to win Gold in the 4x100m in M50.  We were the only USA Men's team to win Gold in the 4x100m.    I bandaged my shoulder and forehead and put on the USA team kit, and went out to do battle one last time for the season.  I was really stiff, and we had stiff competition from the Germans.  They had three M50 100m Finalists on their team including the World Champion and Bronze Medalist. With us in lane 4 and them in 2, they front loaded their team, putting their fastest guys on 1st (11.55) and 2nd (11.34) legs.  They put their slowest guy on anchor.  I ran third leg.  Don, the M55 100m Champion led off and held his own.  Robert, racing the German 100m World Champion on second leg, handed off to me about even with the Germans.   Not wanting to screw it up and knowing Robert was running into a stiff headwind, I played it a bit safe and took off not as fast as I could have.  Our exchanged suffered a bit as he ran up on me, but it was a solid exchange.   I heard him yelling "go baby go" as I took the stick.  The German on 3rd leg, running in lane 2 had run 11.87 in 100m final.  The Germans had a faster exchange to third leg than ours, and with him having the inside lane, he pulled up even with me on the turn and handed off with a few meter lead to anchor.  Being the slowest guy on the team, I just wanted to get the stick to Clinton and he got it about 3m behind the German anchor when he hit the straight, it was a good exchange.  The German anchor, Andreas, was an M55 guy who didn't make the finals in any event, and when Clinton hit his stride, he went by the German so fast it was ridiculous.  He won by 5m.

To my surprise, we ran a smokin' time of 45.15, an avg split of 11.29 ...   it was just 0.68 off the World Record.  About 2 full seconds faster than both the the M50 and M55 teams in Lyon, and just 0.18 slower than a very strong USA M45 team that won Silver.  Clinton was especially happy.  I really think he was relieved actually that I got him the stick in competitive fashion.  With a history of USA failures in the 4x100m in international competition, it was nice to get it done with just a minimum of rehearsal.  We beat teams from Chile, Germany, Australia, Italy, France, Great Britain, and Japan.

Rob took this photo afterward.   I still haven't seen any photos of our medal ceremony.  Nice to stand and hear my own anthem for once.


Our 4x400m team was a throw together team with 2 M60 guys, Kevin M60 and George M64, and Reggie the M56 400m hurdler.  For some inexplicable reason regarding 'lost paper work', our World Champion, Corey was not on the team.  With Australia having 4 guys in the 400m final and Great Britain having 3, I knew it would be a good race between them.  The strong Aussie team won in a time (3:49.03)... slower than our M55 4x400m in Lyon last yr (3:48.33).  Reggie stumbled and fell at the end of his first leg, I know what that is like.  By the time I got the baton to anchor, I was at least 80m behind.  I ran a casual but stiff 400m, just making sure not to get caught.  We got the bronze.   Nice to join George and Reggie on the medal stand.  Our time was really slow... an average of over 62 a leg.

Anyway, some nice momentos.

Wednesday, November 16, 2016


Yeah, I'm over it.  Shit happens.

Was thinking about racing at Vandy's first indoor meet on 12/3,  just a little over 2 weeks away... but I probably shouldn't.   I thought I'd take 15 days off from the track, but I probably need more.  Alan T. says, "you need more than 15 days, gear up for January."  Probably good advice since it's been 10 days and my feet still hurt in the morning, however, the improvement is noticeable.

I know my body and I know I was really in shape by the time the 400m final went down in Perth.  I kind of hate to lose this level of fitness as I am still fairly light.  But, I've got a bad chest/sinus cold right now.   The only thing I've done physical is bike up the mountain on Monday which was a killer workout.  I think it made my cold worse.  It's bad but at least there is no fever.

400m fitness is hard fought and goes away quickly, at least for me.  For every week of non activity, it takes almost 2 weeks to return.  So, if I take 3 weeks off, it could take as long as 6 weeks of training to get it back.

So, WTF happened?
After running less than great 200s - all over 25, I felt maybe I wasn't aggressive enough in the top half of the races.  Even in the 200m final, I ran 25.04 and was closing on the field at the end, maybe a tad bit left.  So, I planned to take a gamble and go out hard in the 400m final.  I thought 55.5 could win it.  I also said to myself to be prepared to lean hard if it's close.

I think I hit my 300m split just a tad too fast, about 39.5.  Running in lane 5, I paced just a tad ahead of Trevor in lane 6.  I beat him and everyone else around the final turn.  Wow, would I like to live over that last 3 seconds of the race, but I can't.  Leading with just 20m to go to a World Championship, I started rigging, Corey and Trevor began to pass me.  I wasn't aware of where the others were... it seemed like 'everyone was passing me'  at that moment.  It was a terrible and helpless feeling, but I thought I might be able to pick one of them off with a hard lean so, 10m out I started to gather myself for a lean...  but that was a mistake.  I stumbled and fell 2.5m in front of the line, sliding 2m and coming to rest with my face just inches from the finish.  Nightmare scenario.  I thought I was closer to the line than I actually was and I thought I had fallen over the line at first, but no.  If I just relaxed, I could have medaled easily, and run a respectable mid 55's time.   I was 2 steps ahead of 4th place Richard and he ran 55.8.   Richard said, if I had fallen a half step later, I would have slid across the line in third.  It truly was a matter of inches.  I was happy to see Corey edge Trevor, earning the Gold for the USA.   It was his fastest race in 3 yrs and he executed perfectly.  He ran a great race, 55.28.
Here a photo of us with 20m to go, and the fall...

Rigging up in the last 10m is ok because one's momentum can still bring it across the line.  In the last 20m is a little harder to manage.  I could have run a smarter and bit more conservative race plan, but I went for it and lost.  The nature of the sport.  This was a tough one though, traveling 25,000 miles round trip to come up literally inches short of a medal and a step from a world title.  I'm ok with it now, can even laugh about it, but it will haunt me for years.  Still, 10 days after, I have scabs on my hands and skin peeling from my shoulder.  

Yes, I think it could have been worse.  It's not like I didn't run fast.  I met many people who traveled from far corners of the world to be eliminated in the semis and prelims.  

I've made my bookings for Albuquerque and Daegu.  I need to focus on that and heel up these hurting feet.   I'll have many more photos to share from Perth during this down time.

Running down into the M50 age group, we won Gold with a smokin ' 4x100m relay, 45.15, just .6 off the World Record... 2 full seconds faster than our Gold medal M55 4x100m in France.  More about that and some inspirational performances in Perth in my next post.

Saturday, November 5, 2016

World Masters Championships - 400m Final

This is one of the hardest posts I've ever written.  Today, after leading the World Championship M55 400m race with 50m to go, I got passed, stumbled and fell inches before the finish line ... when solidly in Bronze medal position.  I was two steps ahead of 4th place with less than 10m to go.  It was an unparalleled disaster.  I went out hard and rigged in the end, was being passed in the last 10m and I try to set up a lean at the finish too soon, and fell, sliding just 6 inches in front of the finish line.

Humiliating.  Disappointing.  Devastating.  I was en route to a certain Bronze medal at about a 55.5 pace.

I cut my forehead, skinned my shoulder, knees, and hands.

To spend thousands, train for a year, and go home with nothing.  All I can say is, I'm feeling the agony of defeat in the worst way.   Suffered to get here.  Suffered in defeat.  The Buddhists say, 'Life is suffering.'  Maybe this is what I needed.

From leading the world championship race .... to falling on my face

I feel broken right now.  A loser, surrounded by so many colleagues that are winners.

It's going to be hard to get back on that track and train for indoor.



Friday, November 4, 2016

World Masters Championships - 400m Semifinals

Won my semifinal heat in 56.24.  Advanced to the World Championship Final on Saturday. Second fastest qualifier.   

It's hard to recap the race because I have not yet seen a video.   Unfortunately, I am unable to really analyze my race and plan strategy as well as I could with the video of my race, and the video of the fastest qualifier in the first heat.

I had lane 4 with my toughest competitor, an Aussie in lane 3.   He has run faster than me this year so I expected to see him at some point during the race.  Outside of me was the other Aussie, the 400m hurdles World Champion.  I was surprised to see him start without blocks.  He started quite slow and I made up the stagger on him within the first turn.   I floated down the back stretch at a nominal pace, not really pushing it to the edge.  Still, no sign of the Aussie as I entered the final turn, I think I was leading at this point.  Just as I was nearing the end of the turn, the Aussie in lane 3 pulled up along side.  We ran side by side for a brief time before I pulled away.  Glancing up at the big screen, I saw that my lead was significant, but I still ran it fairly hard to the end.    I won by almost a second.  I really don't know if he just let me go, or if he didn't have it.  We'll find out tomorrow because I'll be tracking him, as he'll be on my outside.  It seems that if I beat him tomorrow, I should be in the medals.

I'm in lane five with both the next fastest qualifiers inside me, Corey in three and the top seeded Brit in 4.  It's not where I would have liked to be, running blind.  This situation, like all 400m races is like that game of 'lag' in billiards.  Closest to the wall wins.  Hit the wall, lose everything.   So far, my races have been well executed on the conservative side... for the first 200m.  I think my 200m was close to what it was yesterday, 26 low.. which is ok considering a headwind.  Anything faster than 26, I'm playing with possible failure in the form of rigging up in the end.  Tomorrow a 15mph headwind is forecast and hot temperatures.  I need to get that 200m in at around 26 with as little effort as possible.  My competition runs closer to even splits than I, and I need a lead coming into the stretch because he'll likely finish faster than me, he's a tall long-strider.   He beat Corey down the stretch today, mostly in the final 50m, beating him by 0.7.   Corey was pushed, they both were.  I think that could be their maximum effort.  Corey ran about the same time at Nationals as he did today.  I really think that it's possible that anything under 56 could win this and low 56 might even medal.

I need to take it out... good start, stay relaxed, don't panic or tense up if I get passed.  Tomorrow is the day.  I need to bring it.  I feel good.  Whatever happens, happens.

Here's a pro photo of my win today by USATF photographer, Rob D'Avellar.

Hanging with the fast guys - Team USA World Champions: Antwon, Karnell, and Don.
Brotherhood of speed.

Wednesday, November 2, 2016

World Masters Championships - 400m prelims

A pretty good day.  Knew it would be an easy heat to win, and 4 scratches in my heat made it even easier.  I ran a nominal 56.89 out of lane one, fastest qualifier.  I ran with 5 in my heat.  From lane one, I had empty lanes 2, 3, and 4 next to me due to scratches.  The first guy I could pass was in lane 5, and the second fastest guy was out in lane 9, finishing 5.42 seconds behind me... or about 35m.  
I was fairly conservative and think I could go at least a second faster in a better lane, based on my splits. 
Analyzing my race... these were my approximate splits: 
200m - 26.4 / 200m - 300m - 14.4 / 300m - 40.8 / 300m - 400m - 16.1
My goal splits are 26 (13,13), 40 (14), 55 (15)... so my last 100m was the most lacking.  I think I can shave off at least a second on that 56.89 ... and who knows, that might be enough to medal, even win.  I need to hit that 300m in 40 flat and bring it home in at least a 15.5 or better.  It's nice that they have a race clock at the 200m mark.  

It's an odd time of year to be in 400m shape for everyone, and that can help me.  Hard to tell what kind of shape everyone is in... whether they're 'sandbaggin', not tryin', or just out of shape ... or slow.  The Brit who was second fastest qualifier looked good - he already has a Silver in the 400H. Corey looked good as well.  Everyone else pretty much took it real easy and ran over 58, so... I don't know.  I'll likely see the same top contenders in my semi that I'll see in the final.  We'll see who has been doing their homework.  

I wasn't digging the stadium announcer.  He was calling me 'the little speedster', making comments about my turnover making up for my lack of height, and then going off on some tangent about Billy Mills.  Weird.  

After the race, I hung out at the USATF training area, chatted with George and Karnell, both world champs.  Karnell chatted with me about training and foot issues.  I was curious about the 300m hurdles.  Thinking maybe I'd give em a try when I'm M60.  

The USATF has two NormaTec units for the team.  These are pretty awesome machines.  They are essentially leg massagers that work with vacuum pressure.  Really felt great after a 30min session.  I also was able to get a rubber resistance band to work on my adductor a little tomorrow on my day off.  


The heats have been announced and I have lane 4 (heat 2) with the 2 strongest Aussies in 3 and 5.   It should be interesting.  They both ran slow in the prelims, but that doesn't mean anything.  We'll see how it goes.  

Havin' fun.  This place is beautiful.  Took a sunset stroll on the beach.  Saw a group of lifeguards doing sprints on the beach.  In most circumstances, I would've joined them.  But, I thought... better not.  

This beach is less than 100m from my room.  This hotel was a perfect choice.

Tuesday, November 1, 2016

World Masters Championships - 200m Final

After running two fairly weak races in the prelims and semis, I got my confidence back a bit with a decent race in the 200m Finals.  Finished 6th in 25.04.  Sure, I would have liked to run faster, but after a disastrous 25.47 in the semis - resulting in lane 7 for the final, I'll take it.  It's actually 0.04 faster than my Bronze medal race in France last year, and one of my faster non-wind aided times this year.   It was a fast group, 5 under 25, (compared with 2 in France last yr).  3 Aussies, 2 USA, 2 Brits, a German and a Japanese.   It would have taken a 24.6 to medal, not out of the question for me but, not today.  Don McGee won in 24.44, his second World Championship.  It was fun, the Aussies took Silver and Bronze - 24.60 and 24.61.  They were a riot.  The officials were reading some stuff telling us all to turn off electronic devices, Rudy chimed in 'alright guys, turn off your pacemakers.'

I witnessed some awesome performances today.  Steve Peters, M63 ran a hundredth off the M60 WR in an astonishing 24.11.   He is quite an individual.  An Olympic track coach, psychiatrist, and a dominant masters sprinter.  He was watching our race finish and said he 'couldn't believe it' ... 'shoulders and knees and heads bobbing all over the place...' a study in bad running form.  Steve is a high knee lift runner, as opposed to me - a low knee lift / high turnover runner.   He said that's why I run so well indoors.  Gerhard new to M60, who I narrowly beat in Lyon, also ran his fastest 200m in years, 24.63.

With Steve Peters
Bill Collins won his second Gold today in the M65.
With Bill Collins

Tomorrow is the 400m prelims, followed by a day off.  After no shows and not including scratches, there are 44 competitors, and there will likely be more scratches.  There are 5 semifinal heats and I drew lane one for my prelim.  It looks like my biggest competition will come from the Australian champion who has run 54+, Corey - who took second at nationals, and both the Gold and Silver Medalists from the 400m hurdles.  The big news is that the Brazilian who won Silver in Lyon is a no-show.  I'm feeling OK, except for a sore groin.  I think I've gotten out of the funk that I was in and I'm ready to run a 400m tomorrow.  I just wish it weren't from lane one ... with a sore foot and a sore groin.  There likely isn't anyone who will run under 58 in my heat, but you never know.  I'll try and run it hard, because with a day off afterward, it would be good for me.

Monday, October 31, 2016

World Masters Championships - 200m prelims

Ran the 200m prelims in an easy heat today.  Didn't feel real good, a bit tight... probably too anxious, expended too much at the beginning.  25.35 is a very poor time for me, no where near my 'A game' ... which will be required if I have any chance to medal, (since there are 6 guys in this field that could run faster than me).  I was only 5th fastest qualifier and Don was behind me by .03.   I need to relax it out a bit more, save some.  Semis and finals tomorrow.  I have two sub 25 guys in my semi tomorrow including Don, the 100m world champion.  I have lane 5, and the two fast guys are inside me.  I can't freak out if or when they pass me, like Val did in the US final. I need to save some and hope to make the final.

At least the view from my room is nice...

Sunday, October 30, 2016

Training Day

I got a reasonable amount of sleep, slept about 5 hrs .... 11pm - 4am, not too far off normal but I'll need an afternoon nap.  I wasn't going to run today due to sore feet but it was a beautiful day and I wanted to make a 'practice drive' to the stadium, so I was there before 10am this morning.  I wanted to feel my spikes on that Mondo.
Home stretch...

After a standard warmup, I got my spikes on, and did a few starts from the 200m start in my lane for tomorrow: 4.   I ran one hard 150m and it was tiring, glad I did it to shake off the rust.  I did another 100m on the turn and a few more starts and called it a day.  My feet did hurt but felt better afterward and I'm glad I did it.  I just need to remember my race plan for this distance.  I want to get out and up to top cruising speed asap and relax until the last 50m and then put the hammer down.  The conventional wisdom always says 'slingshot off the turn' .. but for me, that is about 20 - 30m too early to put the hammer down.  Shifting to 100% effort at the top of the stretch will result in rigging for me.

The stadium is beautiful.  The only issue is that the designated warmup area is too far away and has too few bathrooms anywhere close.  I think I'm going to warmup on the hill above the back stretch.  Hopefully, they'll open the bathrooms on that side.  Nice weather, only in the 60ºs and bright intense sunshine.  If it were hot, that would be an issue.  It's supposed to be hot on Sat., but very nice the next 2 days.  The strong SW wind will be in the face at the start of the 200m, but a tail wind for the home stretch.  Forecast to be 15+ mph next 2 days.
Western Australia Athletic Stadium

Back stretch, this is where I'll probably hang and warm up
It's going to be a challenge just to make the finals in this 200m field.  There were only two sub-25 sec sprinters in Lyon, there could be enough to fill a whole heat here.  There could be at least 6, maybe more.  Six coming up from the 100m, and a few more like me doing the 200/400.

I drew heat 4 of 7 in the prelims.  2 fast guys in my heat, a Jamaican (who beat me at Penn in the 100m in '12) and an Aussie - both capable of 25.1-ish.   But, both scratched in the 100m, so they may not show.   There were 13 scratches out of 57 entries in the M55 100m.   There are 55 in the 200m, so I think we'll see about 10-20% no shows.  So, to win this heat would be good.

This town is great.  Super scenic, clean, beautiful beaches, people swimming, surfing, kayaking, tons of joggers, and cool places to hang.  I drove the coastal highway and stopped at a few of the parks and a seaside cafe.  A very fit young town, lots of active people.  Modern and clean.

City Park - Indian Ocean

Cafe at the city beach park

Saturday, October 29, 2016

First Day in Perth

The trip was long.  4 hrs to LA, 15 hrs to Sydney, 5 1/2 hrs to Perth... more than 24 hrs in the air.  In all the flights, surprisingly, I never left my seat, never went to the mens room.  Was fairly comfortable on the long flight except for quite a bit of turbulence that shook the cabin side to side.  I had an empty seat next to me which helped a lot.

Indian Ocean
Perth is beautiful.  Like FL in winter. Palm trees, gold sand beaches, beach view from my hotel.  I took a brief nap and took this photo at the beach just steps from my hotel.  I have a sunset view but tonight, it was obscured by a distant shower.  It's very windy here.  Today's 100m had a tail wind and next week's 200m will likely have a tail wind.

After getting through the initial awkwardness of driving a car with the wheel on the right, on the left side of the road, made even more challenging by many traffic circles and confusing GPS directions, I went right to the stadium.

Facilities looked good, great track, big crowd, nice scoreboard w/ large video screen.   Not quite the gravitas of France last year ... with all the choreographed music introducing the races, the 2 languages, etc...   The announcer here is a bit low key by comparison, and it's all in English.  

I watched Don's medal ceremony for the M55 100m.  He won in 11.82, Aussie silver was also under 12, and the tall Belgian took the bronze in 12.1.  Including the semis, 4 guys who will also run the 200m, ran in the 12.1's or better, 6 under 12.26 ... way faster than the field in France last year.

The 200m is going to tough this year.  I think it will take a near PR - mid 24's for me to get into the medals.   I'm staying up this evening so I'm tired and can go to bed at a normal time for me, which is about 11 or 12.   My foot is sore from walking around today so tomorrow, I'll just stretch and rest.  Tempted to go to the stadium as it is open for off day training, but it's going to a be a long 'tournament' and I'll probably just stretch and rest.  Forecast calls for good but windy weather all week except by Saturday, heat may be a factor in the 400m finals.

Don wins gold in the 100m - M55 100m medal ceremony

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Final workout

Final workout of the season.  MTSU ... 77º and breezy, exactly like it will be in Perth.  Happy to see Dean Hayes and Coach Bonner out there.    My last 3 workouts I've patterned after what I heard Lashawn Merrit's coach does:  300s... 3, 2, 1.   Today was one 300m event run in my USA team speed suit that I'll wear for the 200m.  I experienced the phenomenon that I often do when I'm in shape.  Running too fast because it feels too easy.  I started my 300m event run from blocks with a beep start command.
Hoka trainers on 
250m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 40m striders 
3 x blocks starts 
300m event run - 39.50 (25.75, 13.75)
It was too fast.  I would have tied up at the end at this pace.  Coach Bonner timed me on reaction and had 38.7.  I was under my target 100m splits of 13 and 26.  It felt good.  Although my feet hurt, it was confidence building and a good final workout.

Not particularly light, 143.9 after workout.

It looks like a fast track... some really fast times from the women masters 100m including Irene Obera running 16.67 at age 82, Kathy Bergen 15.56 at age 76, and the Aussie M50 winner was 12.39, faster than Emma's world championship W45 time - 12.80.

I woke up this morning thinking, "I can't believe I'm doing this."  I leave home for Perth in 2 hrs.  Better get my shit together.


Tuesday, October 25, 2016

event 350 / split 400

Last workout in Sewanee for the outdoor season.    Stunning summer-like day, dry 77º, sunny, light breeze.  After teaching my students, I headed right to the track for two fast runs in spikes.
Hoka trainers on 
300m warmup, stretches, drills 
Puma spikes on  
40m strider 
350m - 48 (26.23, 40.5) 
400m: 300m - 41.5 / rest 1 min / 100m - 14 
3 x 40m from blocks
I was hoping to break 48 in the 350m but I came in right on it... about a 56 flat pace.  Hopefully that will improve on Mondo and in a race situation.  I felt in shape, not sickly tired or anything.  However, I'm glad to be wrapping up my training ... the feet hurt, but with two pads, and my thick hunting socks, they feel ok for a short speed workout.  In general, I'm ready for a rest.

One more brief workout on Thurs. morning before 30 hrs of travel to Perth and 2 days rest.

Last workout in Sewanee - outdoor season '16

Sunday, October 23, 2016

300 event runs / 200s

Spent a lot of time at the track today, running fast under sunny skies and 70º.  In an effort to protect my foot, I did not use blocks or spikes, but I ran as fast as I needed to.

Hoka trainers on 
300m warmup stretches drills 
3 x 300m event runs - 40.5 (26.2/14.3), 40.75 (26.25 / 14.5), 41.5 (26.5 / 15) 
2 x 200m with 1 min rest - 28, 29 
200m - 26.5

I was going to stop at the end of the 300s, but I came back for more and did as much as my foot would allow.  A decent 1500m total volume and most of it fast.

Running a 40.5 split in trainers is where I should be.  I felt more 'lactic' fatigue than aerobic fatigue at 300m.   Still I think it would be 56 pace.  

Feeling a bit tired and beat up, as is normal at the end of a massively long season.  It is a weird time of year to be running outdoor track ... just 6 weeks before the first indoor meets.  US and Europeans are probably in the same boat, while the Aussies and Brazilians are just getting geared up to the start of their season.  It's a weird time for everyone.

I still obsess about maintaining fitness ... even at this late date because the 400m final is still about 2 weeks away.  I'll have 2 more workouts, maybe 3 if I go out tomorrow.  Each one from here on out will taper down.  Probably 2 event runs Tues and one n done on Thurs.  I am really thankful for a lot of free time Monday because Tues is when it starts to get crazy with work and leave prep.

Weight is a nominal 142.1 after workout.

Friday, October 21, 2016

tempo 400s / 200s

A sudden change of weather and the first rain in 31 days last night in Sewanee.   It was a blustery 52º on the track late afternoon.  It didn't go real well.  I wanted to do more volume but felt weak, probably due to less food intake, intended to get as light as possible.  Weighed 140.6 after workout, probably too light.  I intended to do the dreaded 4x4 w/ 2m... but I bailed after 3.
Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
3 x 400m w/ 2 min rest - 70, 69, 75 
2 x 200m  - 27, 27.5
This workout was disappointing compared to my previous, and especially coming on 2 days rest.   I think I'll have a good carb and protein meal and do some weights tonight.  Sat., off and I think I'll get on the track Sun, Mon, Tue, Thurs for my last speed workouts.

Tried out the new Hoka Bondi 4s.  Didn't like them and will return them.   Too stiff and hard. The Cliftons are much better.

Tuesday, October 18, 2016

More tempo 300s / 200s

Unseasonably warm and beautiful evening in Sewanee, 76º, breezy, and mostly clear.   The football team was just wrapping up practice so I had the place to myself after my first set.

Foot has recovered nicely from the race on Sunday.   With pads and tape, it felt OK.

Hoka trainers on
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
4 x 300m w/ 2 min rest - 48, 48.5, 49, 50.5 
4 x 200m w/ 1 min rest - 30.5, 31, 32, 30.5

Same workout as Friday, slightly faster and stronger.  Feels like I'm getting there.

Ordered some more Hokas, the max cushion Bondi 4s.  Softer and stiffer.  Should get me through the prep for indoor season.  Might try them on Friday.  One more tempo workout, then speed.   It's been a really nice past 2 weeks for weather and training.

141.7 lbs after workout.

Monday, October 17, 2016

pool closed, so stairmaster

Foot sore today after 2 races yesterday so I wanted to do water running but the pool was closed.   Instead I did 30 min on the Stairmaster.

Stairmaster machine  
30 min - level 16 (of 20) - hill interval program

I was sweating bullets after 12 min and dripping constantly by the end.  Far more than I sweat with a track workout because there is no breeze to evaporate.

This probably wasn't necessary but I wanted to burn some calories today and put more 'foundational hay in the barn.'

Final Workout schedule
I will do just 2 more tempo workouts tomorrow and Friday, then do speed and race modeling / event runs on Sunday (10/23), Tues (25), and Thurs (27) - the day I leave.

Perth Time
Perth is 13 hrs ahead of my local time.
Soon as I get on the plane in Nashville, I'm going to wear a watch that has Perth time.  So... Perth time, I leave Nashville 6:30 am (5:30pm local) Friday to arrive in Perth noontime Saturday.  So, my last workout Thursday morning will be like running late at night Perth time (midnight Thursday night).  I will essentially have 2 1/2 days rest before the 200m prelims.

I received official approval from my employer for leave to compete in both Perth and Daegu in March.  Nice that there is an official policy that provides for leave time for state employees to compete in world athletic competitions.

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Meet report - Chattanooga district meet

It was a good last tuneup meet for me before the WMAC in Perth, and I'm happy that my foot held up ok, and I ran some decent times.   The blue GPS track in Chattanooga is a good surface and an IAAF configured track.  It was a bit breezy and pushing 80º when the sun finally broke through.

200m - 24.92 (h) 
400m - 55.99 (h)

I wasn't going to run the 200m, but I thought it would be good training, and it was first.  Both races went OK, but I played it a bit conservatively.  Didn't want to get hurt or rig up in the 400m.  Definitely more left in the tank.   Both races, I had outside lanes and never saw anyone through the whole race.  Small meet, they ran age groups together.  I decided to wear my Nike Team USA uniform.  (It's the USA Olympic uniform from London '12.  Thanks to USATF).

Not a great or aggressive start but it felt OK.   From lane 4, I accelerated to full speed around the 120m mark, but relaxed toward the end and coasted across the finish.  Was about 25m ahead of Jack, a new M60 guy who ran a PR 27 low.  (Heh .... listen to the comment from the starter at the end of the video).

From lane 6, never saw anyone, and my start was much better (than the 200m). I played it a little conservatively and hit the 300m mark about .5 to 1 sec off my usual 40 flat split.  But the last 100m felt good, no rigging, and not terribly painful, (unlike a few races I've run this season).  It was decent execution but not pushing to the edge.  I finished before the rest of the older field turned the corner to the home straight, about 100m ahead of 2nd.  This time was about the same time I ran 2 weeks before the Jacksonville Nationals last year (56.23 FAT).  So, I think I'm fairly ready.

The foot was definitely sore afterward but not too painful during the race.  I was able to use my regular meet spikes without socks and with the Rock-tape and pad.

I was very happy to share the meet with Roya (W55) who won both the 100m and 50m races against some women who were in the younger age group.

She's a natural.  Look at this form, and she doesn't even train...  16.50 in the 100m.

Roya Wins Two Gold Medals

I also was inspired to see 90 yr old sprinter Charlie Baker run multiple events. Amazing.

With M90 sprinter, Charlie Baker

Friday, October 14, 2016

Volume tempo 300s / 200s

Perfect conditions at the Sewanee track, very quiet, fall break has begun.   Mid 60ºs and cloudy, light breeze.  This is the biggest workout I've done in a while.  The foot is a bit better but far from normal.  At least it's not worse.  I did this workout twice in June and July.  This one was a bit slower and every bit as hard.  Real suffering.
Hoka trainers on 
300m warmup, stretches, drills 
4 x 300m w/ 2 min rest - 47.5, 48.5, 49.5, 52.5 
4 x 200m w/ 1 min rest - 31, 32, 33, 31.5
Normally, wouldn't do this type of workout 2 days before a race, but I'm really not considering this race a 'real race'.   Just a time trial to see how my foot holds up to 400m in spikes.   I'm a whole lot more optimistic than I was a week ago.    Before this workout I tried 3 different pad configurations with the usual k-tape.  I went with the gel pad under forefoot and the metatarsal pad behind the injury.  The pain was there but not bad, worse on the first one, and almost gone by the end of the 1st set.  Still haven't taken any anti inflammatory drugs, it's not really swollen.

This was a good 2000m total workout.  I have just 5 track workouts left after Sunday's race - Tues, Friday, Sunday, Tues, and the day I leave Thurs.   I think two more hard volume tempo workouts then speed/ race modeling for the last 3.

Inside 2 weeks now.  Weight is good but maybe on the light side, 141.1 lbs.  Felt a bit weak tonight, especially on my last 300m.

Tuesday, October 11, 2016

500m + tempo 200s, 100s from blocks

Perfect night in Sewanee to train, except for the presence of an 0-5 football team.  They essentially hogged most of the track and after one 500m, I used the back stretch to do my 200s.  Perfect weather, very dry and 68º.

Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
500m - 77 (61, 16) 
4 x 200m w 1 min rest - 29, 30, 32, 33 
Puma spikes on 
4 x 30m from blocks at the 400m start 
2 x 100m from blocks at the 400m start reacting to beep - 13, 13

It went ok.  My heavily taped foot was ok.  Felt good enough after the 200s to get the spikes on.  I am fairly certain my foot is not getting worse and I know racing in spikes, it will take a beating but I think I can handle it.   I used heavy socks in both my spikes and trainers.  Actually, my foot feels fine tonight after workout, better than when I started.  But, if I didn't have this issue, I probably would be doing more volume ... like 2 sets of 200s instead of one.

 142.0 lbs after workout.

Monday, October 10, 2016


I pushed it pretty hard in the pool today, got my heart rate up over 160.

Pool running 
10 x laps w/ 30 sec rest  

Perth weather looks ok except for the wind.  Looks like a very windy place, most days have winds over 10 mph and many are 15+mph.  It seems to rain just one day out of 6 and the dewpoint (humidity) is extremely low for a coastal city.  The stadium is less than 2 miles from the sea.   The temperature is very changeable... 85º high one day, 60º high 2 days later.  So is the wind, no prevailing direction, looks different every day.  If the wind is W, SW, or S ... would mean a tail wind for the 200m.  Stadium homestretch goes from SW to NE.

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Split 400s

On the track early afternoon in Sewanee, bright sunshine, low 70ºs.   Foot feeling worse than before but tolerable.

Hoka trainers on 
300m warmup, stretches, drills 
300m / rest 1 min / 100m - 41.8, 14.5 
300m / rest 1 min / 100m - 42, 14.5 
300m / rest 1 min / 100m - 42.5, 14.5

It kicked my ass and the foot felt sore but ok afterward.  I tried some new taping and adjusted the pad 3 times, looking for the magic placement to offer the best support.  The workout was a butt kicker, really felt it in the glutes.  My pace was probably about 57 high- 58 low, running from the 400m start into a headwind.  I feel like I would have to perfectly execute to run low 56s at my present state of fitness.  I'm not able to put in the volume I feel is necessary and can do just what I can tolerate.

My foot will probably suffer a bit when I race a 400m in spikes in one week.   I have just 2 track workouts scheduled before then - Tuesday and Friday.   I'd like to put in more volume on Tues if I can tolerate it.  I'm signed up to race the 400 and 200 but doubt if I'll do the 200.  My first 200 since Nationals will probably be in Perth.

I think I should go to the pool tomorrow to get in a workout in anticipation of my 2 days off Wed and Thurs this week.

I got my prescription filled, and it wasn't a steroid.  It was non-steroid anti inflammatory - Meloxican, so I won't have to worry about filing paper work with USADA.  I still haven't taken any medication.  The foot feels ok afterward, better than when running the first rep, and usually better on the second rep of a workout.

142.4 lbs after workout.    17 more days before I leave.

Friday, October 7, 2016

tempo 300s

Back to the track under a perfect 72º night.  Stadium lights on after a lacrosse scrimmage in Sewanee.
Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
4 x 300m w/ 2 min rest - 47.5, 48, 49.5, 52.5 
Puma spikes on 
100m - 13.2

Wanted to do more, but I'm back on the track every other day for the next 4 days (with a sore foot) so I made it short.   I tried a short sprint at the end of the session in spikes.  Felt ok at first, but hurt toward the end, not severe.  Always feels ok afterward, but hurts next morning.  At least it does not seem to be getting worse.

This workout did kick my ass.  Don't feel prepared yet.  I ran this same workout faster in June and July... just the last rep.

My weight is finally there.   141.7 lbs after workout.

Monday, October 3, 2016

Race schedule for Perth World Championships

Finally, the specific schedule for the WMAC in Perth has been released.  My schedule:

  • 1:40 pm, Mon., Oct 31 - 200m Prelims
  • 10:15 am, Tues., Nov. 1 - 200m Semis  /   2:35 pm, - 200m FINAL
  • 1:37 pm, Wed., Nov. 2 - 400m Prelims
  • Thurs., Nov. 3 - off
  • 1:35 pm, Fri., Nov. 4 - 400m Semis
  • 3:30 pm, Sat., Nov. 5 - 400m FINAL
  • Sunday, Nov. 6 - Relays

The good thing is that all my races are on the same new Mondo Super X track in the big stadium.  Wish there was more time between the Semis and Finals of the 200m, but with 4 hrs, I'll be able to go back to my hotel for 2 hrs or so.    I could run relays if I feel ok because my flight leaves 10:30pm Sunday night.   I don't think there will be enough people for a relay.  I doubt if Don M. will hang til Sunday, as he is finished on Tues.  If he did, we could surely win the 4x100.  I might be asked to run in a younger age group like M50 to complete a team. We'll see, but I'm doubtful.

Western Australia Athletic Stadium - Super X Mondo Track

Back on track

Pain is temporary.  Quitting is forever.

It went ok today.  With the foot taped and padded, there was less than moderate level pain.  It didn't feel too bad afterward.  I think I will be ready.  After all, in Perth I'll be running a grand total of just 1800m in about 4 min... 6 races. (I often do more in a workout).  So, that is not a lot of volume in 6 days (with one day off).

Speed endurance today, everything 90%
Hoka Clifton trainers on 
300m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 500m - 77.5 (61.5 / 16), 81 (64.5, 16.5) 
300m - 42.5 
200m - 26.5
Blasting a 77 500m was a hard first run after 6 days off the track.  Made me feel like I have work to do.

One thing I learned, exact placement of the meta pad is essential.   1/2" off, or too big, it won't work as well.   I spent $25 on pads that probably won't work.  The Rock tape is essential and very helpful.  I have a half-size-big brand new racing spikes that I will probably make use of, at least in the preliminary rounds so I can wear socks and pad.  I could actually wear one just on my left foot.   Same color.

I have not taken any NSAIDs or any drugs of any kind.  I will need to get back to hard tempo work on Friday.  1500m wasn't too bad for a first time back.  Will probably need to stay under 1600m for workouts.

Need some stretching and massage.  Borrowed a lacrosse ball just for that purpose.   This coming week - Pool tomorrow. Wed off.  I may row on Thursday night, track Friday, Sunday, Tues next week.
143.2 after workout.

Slipped my spikes on and was surprised that they felt no worse than my soft trainers.  The stiffness of the spike plate seems the limit flex and protect the injury.

Sunday, October 2, 2016


Did some aqua running today.   Haven't done this in a while but plan to do this once a week for the next 3 weeks.  If you don't know what deep water running is, check it out.

I feel pretty good, think I'm in shape considering 6 days off from the track.   Morning weight was 143.5.

Aqua running 
10 x 75-80 sec (~136 steps) w/ 30 sec rest

Tomorrow is my return to the track.  Looking forward to it.

Saturday, October 1, 2016

Not yet

Decided to wait til Monday to return to the track to be safe.   It's not healing real fast but it is better.  I need to expect some end of season aches and pains but I don't want to damage myself.   I did the rower for the third consecutive night, some stretching, A skips and B skips.

Tomorrow I will do aqua running in the pool.   I'm going to do only 2 track workouts this coming week, Monday and Friday.  Then if all goes well, then the following week - Sunday, Tues, Friday, and race Sun 10/16.

I could have run today with some moderate pain but better to wait I think.   Still have almost 4 weeks.

Did less on the rower but harder with less rest.

Concept 2 rower 
5 x 500m w/ 90 sec rest -  1:55 - 1:58  (39 spm)

Friday, September 30, 2016


I think so.  Feeling ready to get back to the track.  Was going to wait til Sunday, but I think Saturday, then Tuesday is a good plan, so I'll have 2 days rest in between and an opportunity to cross train.

Doc didn't seem too concerned about me training as my pain level was not anywhere near where it would be with a torn plantar.  He showed me the right way to attach a metatarsal pad (I was doing it wrong) and with the proper k-tape application, I almost feel like I have a new foot.  It takes away nearly all of the stress and pain, but I'm sure I will have some burning once I start again.

weights tonight, hip flexors, adds, glutes  
2000m row in 8:56.  

I'll probably keep it light and fast the first time back.  Maybe just a few split 400s or something.   Doc prescribed a steroid pac as a precaution.  I probably won't use it unless I have to toward the end of my training in a few weeks.  I did not file a TUE with USADA for the m-predisone, because I will likely use it before I leave.  Doc was against injection of anti inflammatory because of possible weakening of the plantar plate.  He also thought PRP injection wouldn't be necessary, although a colleague of mine highly recommended it.

Thursday, September 29, 2016


The cross training begins.  I did intervals on the concept 2 rower tonight.  Putting my feet high in the stirrups put no stress on my forefoot and gave the glutes a good pump.  Foot feels much better now with 3 days off the track, only one track day in 6 days now.  (But before that, I did 6 of 7 days which was too much - Sept 17, 18, 19, 20, 22, 23).   Still, I can feel an occasional burning sensation but its not constant and I can walk normally without pain.

Hoka trainers on 
Concept 2 rower: 
10 x 500m w/ 2 min rest  - 2 min / ~ 38 spm

I see the doc tomorrow.  The main agenda is to evaluate the extent of my plantar plate / mtp joint damage.   I'm about 90% sure it's not worse than moderate, but that doesn't mean it's ok.  If I tear it completely, that is serious.  (Possible surgery, cast, out 6 mo.).   The reason I don't think it's a serious tear is that I can do a heal raise on that foot with no pain.  I could not do that 2 days ago.  I think if I can get maybe 2 or 3 good track workouts this coming week beginning as early as this weekend, and dive back in for my last 2 weeks before Perth, I might be able to pull it off.  I think I have a decent enough base to do it but will be handicapped since I won't be able to do much top speed work with spikes.

I have a hand timed race in 17 days on (10/16), and I'll make the final determination after that.  I was going to race both the 200 and 400, but probably just the 400.

I called USADA today about filing a TUE for prednisone use.   I may ask for an oral anti inflammatory steroid pack to have in case I need it when I return to the track.  I probably will.  It helped my right foot when I needed it last June.

The only good thing about this injury is that I still have time.  If this happened 2 weeks from now, it would be over.  It might still be, but I'm going to give it a shot.  It would be so easy to sit on my ass and eat pastry, and give it up.  But... that team USA speed suit and team kit is sitting on my dining room table and is the first thing I see when I walk in.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

Injury update

I think this metatarsalgia injury is traceable to the previous week where I sought to dive in hard after running a disappointing time at that Nashville meet on 9/17.   I trained 6 of 7 days including an ambitious strength workout on the weight sled - which I suspect exacerbated my injury issue due to the fact that it was a relatively new regime, and the fact that it by it's very nature, requires a lot of forefoot flexion.

I've consulted two foot specialist physicians who treat runners (and are athletes themselves).   One has said that I could could get some relief from both an anti inflammatory oral steroid and/or a 'well timed' anti inflammatory steroid injection, provided that the plantar plate is not significantly damaged.  That can be determined upon my Friday exam with Dr. W.   He may be able to determine that with a Lachman's test, or possibly an MRI.  

I was scheduled to do a track workout tomorrow night but I may opt for the rowing machine instead.

I just received my Olympic team uniform, speedsuit, singlet, sweats, etc...   A real shame if I'm not able to use them.

Dad suggested a taping that may just work.  Frankly, it's feeling much better tonight, not 100%, but better the more rest I get.  If I am to come close to attaining my A-game again with this setback, cross training will be essential.  I'm thinking aqua running in the pool (as much as I hate it), and the concept 2 rower.

Also, Dr. R has said that I may need to request a TUE from USADA for the oral cortico-steroid.  I'll call them in the morning.

Monday, September 26, 2016

tempo 300s

Nice night in Sewanee, low 70ºs.   I took off the weekend due to the sore left foot, and it's still sore but not debilitating.   I went out tonight anticipating taking Tues. and Wed. off from the track.  Will do some cross training tomorrow.  Probably rowing.
Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
5 x 300m w/ 2 min rest - 50, 50, 51, 51.5, 50.5 
200m - 26.75
Funny how 2 days off feels like a long time.   Slightly slower than my previous set of 300s. Alternating ice and spa is effective relieving the soreness.  The right foot that has bothered me for quite some time is no longer much of an issue, and I hope this left foot issue also fades.

144.4 lbs after workout.

Saturday, September 24, 2016


This soreness in my left foot is metatarsalgia - pain at the ball of the foot. After two consecutive days on he track Thurs and Fri, it has become enough of a problem I may interrupt my training schedule and take Sunday off.  Better to go light this coming week, do some cross training and let this thing heal so I can put 3 hard weeks of training in before Perth in Oct.

Including last Saturday's race, I've been training 6 of the last 7 days, and I'm starting to wear down. Actually, my usual right foot pain has been ok, a bit better.  This new issue has come up the past few weeks.  Probably just an arthritis issue.  I don't think it's a stress fracture because the pain is not sharp or intense.  It is more caused by extreme dorsiflexing the toes rather than just weight bearing.  But it does hurt to do heel raises in bare feet, so I'd better stay off my feet tomorrow and just do resistance bands.   Don't want this to become something that will prevent me from training when I need it most.  Training is painful enough, don't need any extra pain.  Probably wouldn't hurt to see Dr. Willard.

I ordered a forefoot pad that should help with this along with some strengthening and stretching exercises.

Friday, September 23, 2016

more negative split long sprints

My second workout in 14 hrs.  Blazing sun in Sewanee near 80º but feeling much hotter in the sun at 11am ... partly due to that damn artificial turf inside the  track.  I kept it brief...
Hoka trainers on 
350m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 500m - 78 (63, 15) / 83 (66, 17)
Didn't push the last one too hard, not completely exhausted, took about 10-12 min in between.

Need to stay off my feet on my days off.  I'm getting some new pain on the ball of my left foot and some minor swelling.  Not serious but it will prevent me from doing any fall hiking before the World meet.  I need all the recovery I can get.  Right now, Sat and Wed are my days off.

142.8 after workout.  Weight loss has been slow.

Thursday, September 22, 2016

negative split long sprints

Summer hanging on in Murfreesboro ... upper 80ºs just before sunset at the Dean Hayes track.  Feet still a little sore from Tuesday's volume so did quality tonight as I will be back out tomorrow.
Hoka trainers on 
300m warmup, stretches, drills 
2 x 400m - 59.5 (30.5 / 29), 61 (31, 30) 
300m - 44 (15, 15, 14)
The second 400m, while slower, felt better coming up the straight.  I was still well short of goal on my first one.  Was hoping for 58 (30 / 28) ... but no.  

I'm reminded of what Jim said... at some point, "you can do the same workouts but just not be able to run as fast".   I've been fighting that for 5 yrs now.

143.0 after workout

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

tempo 300s, 200s

Warm evening in Sewanee, about 80º at sunset and dry, falling into the mid 70ºs.  I upped the volume tonight anticipating a good recovery period during my day off tomorrow.

Hoka trainers on 
400m warmup, stretches, drills 
5 x 300m w/ 2min rest - 50, 50, 50.5, 51, 50 
3 x 200m - 26.2, 26.4, 27

I backed off the speed a little in an effort to stay consistent in speed and tack on an extra.  Usually do 4 x 300m w/ 2 min avg 49ish.

I finished with some fast 200s working on form.  I really need to remind myself to relax.  Dynamic relaxation.  That's what messed me up in Sat race.   Relaxed effort is less effort.

143.2 lbs after workout.

Monday, September 19, 2016


After doing my ab routine at home, I hit the football field to push the sled.  In complete darkness, the stars were awesome and it was a perfect 70º in Sewanee.  I wondered what the sky would look like at night in Australia.

2 x 50 each leg - hanging abs straps with 10lb ankle weights 
8 x 60 yds - 60 lb sled push sprints 
2 x 15 - ham/glute raises with 30lbs 
2 x 40 - calf raises with 300 lbs 
hip flexors, adductors, rows

I don't know what it is about these sled pushes, but they are more fatiguing than hill sprints or stadium stairs.  I had to walk 100m in between each.  Doing 8 was hard, like running 20 stadium stair sprints.  Aerobically, like running a hard 200m and they burn like nothing else, but not where you'd expect it.  Not in the glute or hams but in the lower quad.  My quads were pumped.  60 yds is a good distance, felt fine until the last 20 yds ... then it gits ya.   Quite a burn.

Hope to do this again on Mondays.