Wednesday, August 29, 2007

Shoulder injury

As I was trail running this morning, I hit a tree root and fell quite hard. As soon as I hit the ground I knew that I had dislocated my shoulder. I was in excruciating pain, and couldn't even lift my arm.I went to the hospital and they re-set my shoulder without a whole lot of problems.

Unfortunately, that likely means that I can't run for at least the next month. And, with that, I will be up to participate in the half marathon in Vermont at the end of the month. I'm more than a little unhappy about that but sometimes that's how the bone breaks.

Actually, it reminds me of an old joke:
Patient: Doctor, I broke my arm in three places.
Doctor: Well, I'd recommend staying out of those places then.

That joke is probably good advice that I stay off the trails and on the roads for quite a while. If I'm going to be serious about running I need to take better care of myself. It's not my favorite type of wake-up call, but that's how life is sometimes.

So, there likely won't be a whole lot of in the next couple of weeks as I'll likely be walking just to keep my fitness at a decent level.

Any suggestions from the runners for what to do during an injury?

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Mapping runs across the country

Since my inclusion on some other running blogs (thanks Maddy, Charlie and Susan) and the Complete Running Network, I've had a number of questions about how you can also map runs across the country.

I'm using Gmap-Pedometer, a wonderful site that allows you to keep track of progress and save the route so that you can continue at a later date. So, when I have a significant distance increase from the last time I posted progress, I got into the site and just follow the path and re-save the route. Otherwise, I'd have to create the software myself which wouldn't be an easy thing.

So, why Philadelphia to LA? Why not someplace cooler with San Fran or Seattle? Well, I used to fly out of Philly all the time and I see the Philly to LA as one of those classic transcontinental flights across the country. It's not the most northern point to the most southern point, but it is a route that's flown across the country many times a day.

For details, take a look at the explanation posts.

Sunday, August 26, 2007

Leaf Peepers 1/2 Marathon - Here I come

Well, it may be a sign of me being over confident after my success last weekend at the Moose On the Loose 10-miler or it could be that I want to get to West Virginia as quickly as possible, or it could be that I don't want to wait for November for my first 1/2. Either way, I signed up for the Leaf Peepers 1/2 Marathon on September 30 in Waterbury, VT (about a 2 hour drive from me).

I grew up in Pennsylvania, but had never heard of the "Leaf Peeper" phenomenon that New Englanders frequently discuss. Ah well, now I'll run a race in its honor.

Concord 5K results

I completed the Concord 5K this morning and bested by last 5K by about 13 seconds. It probably would have been a bit faster (10/15 seconds) if the course were better marked. The race coordinator essentially said that you'd just follow the person in front of you. That'd be fine if there was always someone in front of you who knew where they were going. Regardless, a good one and a close one to home so I'm not spending the whole day on the road.

Some good news from it:

1) Paula Radcliffe's voice came on my Ipod to tell me I had run my fastest mile yet (7:18).
2) I finished as the second top finisher in the 19-29 crowd (though I don't think there were a ton of people in that group). Regardless, I got a free pint glass in case I want to put the calories back on from beer.
3) My pace was technically faster on this one than the Cigna 5K, mostly because it looks like I ran another .3 miles (ah, the Nike+ calibration).

Saturday, August 25, 2007

Progress - 8/25/07

I'm almost across the state of Pennsylvania now--no small feat with such a wide state. In a couple of weeks, I'll be across the West Virginia border.

Tomorrow, I have a quick 5K in Concord. I'm not a huge fan of 5Ks, but hey, it's a race and that's never a bad thing.

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

Progress - 8/22/07

I'm now 250 miles into the trip and getting close to the 70/76 split that will take me towards West Virginia.

Sunday, August 19, 2007

Moose On The Loose - Results

I completed the Moose On The Loose trail run this morning--10 miles (though Nike+ says slightly less). I finished in 1 hour, 21 minutes and 54 seconds. I beat my personal record (PR, for those of you keeping score at home) on a 10-mile course by nearly 8 minutes (previous best of 1:29'47"). I can't tell you how happy I am with my performance.

As you can see from the graph, I was pretty steady until I really turned it on during the last two miles. I focused on lengthening my stride rather than trying to run faster. Turns out I did both, getting to a pace of 7:45/7:50 for most of the last 2 miles.

Needless to say, I'm overjoyed with my performance, as running 8 minutes faster is a huge improvement on a 10-mile course. I also wasn't as dead afterwards as I was after the Broad Street Run. As far as running days go, this was one of my top ones!

Thursday, August 16, 2007

Progress - 8/16/07

236 miles in and I've passed Downey and am on my way to Somerset and Husband. You have to love Pennsylvania town names.

Run - 8/14/07

Outside of the last race, this is the longest run that I've done in a while. I just went out to discover the area, got lost a few times and then found my way back. It's taper time as I rest for the Moose On The Loose race on Sunday.

Saturday, August 11, 2007

Progress - 8/11/07

I'm now 220 miles into the journey and have passed Manns Choice, New Buena Vista and Kegg. I'm on my way to Downey and Rt. 160.

Run - 8/11/07

This was the Sandown 5-Miler run that I just mentioned. My ipod showed it as 5.05 miles, but I think it was probably 5 on the nose. Despite the serious hills, my pace was consistent. I'm very excited.

Sandown 5-Miler results

I just completed the Sandown 5-Miler. The interesting part about this race is that I had no idea it had the hills it did. It wasn't advertised or even mentioned anywhere when I was looking around. Well, it turns out that it's known for the 13 hills in 5 miles. The last major one rises 350 feet almost straight up.

OK, so lots of good news here.

1) I finished in 43:31, right around an 8:37 pace. I was very happy with this.
2) Had I known that the course looked like this, I likely wouldn't have done it. I'm glad that I was in the dark.
3) It was actually a lot of fun to run, and will be even more fun next year when I run it because I know what's involved.
4) By the time I got to the 4th mile, I had already crested the 350' hill and had a ton of energy. I was hurdling the cones on the side of the road and smiling from ear to ear.
5) If you take this pace and double it (I know--not really a true calculation), I'd best my time at the Broad Street Run by almost 3 minutes. The Broad Street Run is almost completely flat. Couple that in and that tells me I'm in much better shape now that I was in May.

Friday, August 10, 2007

Cigna 5K Results

Running exactly 8:00 minute miles, I finished the Cigna 5K in 23:53. I was happy/fine with it, though for some reason it was a bit of struggle. I guess it had something to do with the amount of people you had to run around, thrill of the race, amount of time to wait between registration/race, etc.

Next: Sandown 5-miler on Saturday. Tomorrow will be a rest day.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Progress - 8/6/07

I've passed Bedford and Route 99 and am on my way towards Shawnee State Park and, um, Manns Choice.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Like a kid in a candy store...

I only ran a couple miles today, but I couldn't care less. I found a trail close to my new house and it seems quite big. I really missed the Nor-Bath trail in the Northampton, PA area, so this will need to do for now. It's wooded (great in the heat) and seems large enough. Needless to say, I was smiling the whole time.

Moose on the Loose Registration

Call me motivated. I just signed up for a 5K (eh) and a 10-miler. The 10-miler is the Moose on the Loose race in Nashua, NH (8/19) and it's a trail run, which should be interesting. Wish me luck!

Progress - 8/1/07

Slowly but surely, I'm getting close to 200 miles into my trip and on Rt 76/70 right now, approaching Bedford. I still have quite a way to go to get into West Virginia, but I'm still truckin' along. Mileage has been low recently (4 miles or less), but I'm going to blame some of it on the heat. I know... whatever helps me sleep at night.

Manchester Half-Marathon, Here I Come!

I just signed up for the Manchester Half-Marathon on Saturday, November 4. This will give me great motivation to continue my quest and increase my distance. So far the longest competitive run I've done is the Broad Street Run in Philly (10 miles), but I figure I'm due for a challenge.

I'm thinking that I'm going to do a couple 5Ks next week, if I'm not too late for registration. They aren't my favorite since I like to run much further than 3 miles and I think they're too prone to amateurs, but whatever!