This Man Runs

Life, Running, & Medicine.
Notes on life as I see it.

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

We're Moving: Av Piste!

After over a year of a silence on my part, please check out AvPiste, my new outdoor sports blog. Thank you all for the support the past couple years making this little project a success!

Thursday, January 1, 2009

New Years Runner

Recent happenings include:

1. A nice 20 mile bike ride down the Silver Comet Trail 2 days ago.  It's only my third outing with the bike and must say the off-street path is awesome for riding.  I wasn't really pushing hard, but trying to get a solid workout.  Funny how in my cheap-o shorts, cotton shirt, and standard pedals (not even a cage) I only got passed once by a small group of riders, but zipped around a bunch of other posers in full-on bike outfits and expensive rides.  I rode 84 minutes, avg 15mph (included stopping at intersections).  A lot of fun and much easier on the body than an 84 minute run.

2. Have been incorporating some Cross-Fit principled workouts the past few weeks.  What I really mean is, I have been doing push ups, sit ups, curls, squats, and dips.  I'm trying to a) get a stronger core to help with longer runs / injury protection and b)get my wimpy arms to firm up a bit to match my legs.  Also a little weight loss would be nice.

3. Santa brought me the Saucony Hurricane 10 last week.  Very nice shoe so far.  Did a single 6 miler with them so far.  Much more sleek than the Hurricane 8's.  Will write up a review after using them a bit more.

Happy New Year!

Saturday, December 20, 2008

Review: Sof Sole premium inserts

Recently I had the opportunity to try out two different Sof Sole insert products: The Adapt and Stability.  I used them in place of my factory insoles in my Nike Air Equalion +2's and Saucony Hurricanes.
"Adapt" overall: 4.5 / 5 stars
The Adapt is a heat-moldable insert (225-degrees in oven for 2 minutes then wear in shoe for several minutes while cools) that provides a lot of cushion and support in the heel.  I really liked this one because it kept the toebox wide while really hugging my heel.  This really felt like a custom insert.  After doing a few 10K training runs with it I was very pleased to note that I never "noticed" my feet - exactly what we should be shooting for.  Impossible to say whether this heal support and cushion will pay off in the long run but it sure seems like it.  These inserts also good for just walking and standing a lot - I wore them several days to work and in the operating room.  Again, I did notice how they really support the heel, but absolutely no complaints.  Will plan on keeping these in until shoes are dead, and will likely buy them again after my next factory insoles start getting a bit flat.
"Stability" overall: 4 / 5 stars
These are ready-to-use out of box with no heat-moldable action.  I did notice they give a lot of medial foot/heel support to prevent pronation, and they work quite well to that end.  Similar to the Adapt, after running/walking/standing on these for several days I have no complaints.  They most certainly brought new life back to my 14-month old Saucony's.  When running I do tend to notice that anti-pronation support a bit more than the Adapt but this did not cause any problems during my 2-week trial.  I think these inserts are excellent premium replacements but personally I favored the Adapt a bit more.
For sizing both of these they come in a range of shoe sizes that then require trimming.  I simply used my factory insoles as a template to cut the Sof Sole inserts with heavy scissors.  I can see how messing up the trimming could botch these as they would either be too big and crowd in areas or too small and slip around. 
It is important to note that I wasn't really considering buying insoles, but was given these on a promotion to try.  I had thought of getting some for my older shoes to get more mileage out of them, but had gotten no further than the grocery store foot pharmacy in my quest.  At $30 a pair these are probably most valuable to the person with slightly worn shoes, rather than brand-new.  Of course for specific problems like over pronatation (despite a stability-class shoe) or heel issues these may be worth a look earlier.

Available at these retailers, among others:
Sports Authority
Rack Room Shoes
DSW Shoe Warehouse
Athlete's Foot
City Sports
Finish Line

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Lazy Runner

Running Lately:
10.5 miles sunday afternoon (cool and clear).
last week did two 6-milers at 6am at Peidmont Park (yikes COLD!, around 25 and 30 degrees, add some wind).
was planning a medium length run tomorrow but looks like the rain will stop me...

Monday, December 1, 2008

Turkey Runs

A couple of chilly runs lately.  First was Thanksgiving morning in Florida with a cold high-30s run down some old dirt roads.  Ground was a bit damp still but that had the advantage of keeping dust out of the air.
Next was not until today back home in Atlanta when I agreed (stupidly) to a 5:45am Piedmont Park run.  Did about 6 miles via 3 progressively smaller loops (spiralling inward).  Took a full 2 miles to get "unchilled" in the mid-30s high-wind weather.
Winter is coming quickly.  Finding the time and weather to run gets difficult.  The Elliptical looks better and better by the degree...

Thursday, November 13, 2008

The [Douchey] Doctors

Wow disturbed to catch on daytime TV yesterday a show called "The Doctors" hosted by that ER guy Stork who was on Bachelor a lifetime ago.
What a crappy show, but I guess speaks something about the stay-at-home moms still finding blonde young docs hot.

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Second Review of Sole E35 Elliptical

Please refer to my first early review of my new elliptical machine.  I now write a brief followup to that review after about 6 months of use.
Price: $1299 at, includes shipping.
Pros: price, quiet, very sturdy/heavy duty feel, adjustable "pedal" angles, multiple workouts, remembers my weight/age
Cons: remote HR monitor requires a hairless chest and even then its iffy
Weird: The calorie calculator consistently reads about half the calories of a similar workout on a LifeFitness or Precor, the fan is so weak you can barely detect its on, there is audio input & small speakers & audio output (the output is pointless)
Sound bite: A durable high quality low-frills machine at a good price, much less than its competitors.
Would I buy again: YES!
I admit I haven't used it as much as I had hoped.  I used the machine quite a bit in the heat of summer to get a run in here or there, probably averaging twice a week.  We have sort-of built a little home-gym around the elliptical featuring a TV, iPod stereo, wood floors, some inspirational posters and a towel rack.
One place this has really helped is with my IT Band problems.  This elliptical does not quite take your knee through 30-degrees of motion (at least for me), so even when my knee is flaring up I can run on this with very little problem.
After using only this elliptical for a while then getting back on the LifeFitness at the gym I must say I like the Sole E35 a lot better.  It has a much smoother "running feel" with what seems like less "up and down".  I didn't think that would be true with a front-flywheel but it is definitely noticeable.
The near-silence of the machine is huge plus.  After a couple months I noticed a "rubbing" noise like there was some extra friction going on somewhere.  Turns out the plastic/rubber guides in the back were not really lubricated (I never lubed them).  I used the supplied "elliptical lube" and put a couple drops on the guides and voila! Silence.  Now when I work out my wife usually just hears my huffing and puffing and not the machine at all.
Our home gym is on the second story of our wood-framed home.  I was a little worried that using the elliptical would make the whole house shake or vibrate (like the washer does sometimes).  But no, no such problems.  Unless immediately below the elliptical downstairs you can't tell anything is going on at all.
One recommendation I definitely make is to put your machine on some kind of hard flooring.  Since this is my house and not the gym I definitely notice that I make a virtual sea of sweat when I work out more than 30 minutes.  It is disgusting to think that if this were on carpet all that sweat would get soaked in.  On the wood floors I just wipe it up with a towel (and of course do regular floor cleaning).  BTW I have the machine on top of a cheap WalMart 3/8" rubber mat; no damage or denting noted to the bamboo floors yet.
Anyway if you are thinking about a machine I think this is a great alternative to the high-prices Precor or LifeFitness, and far better than the department store cheap-o's.  You can try out some models in person at Dick's Sporting Goods, they are an authorized retailer but I went with the factory store to save money on sales tax.