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

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Yikes the knee!

Admittedly I've been lazy since the marathon about running.  This morning I headed out for what I hoped would be a long run.  Atlanta was beautiful today - clear, 50-degrees and breezy.  Very nice for running.  At about mile 4 I felt my left, then my right, IT band acting up at my lateral knee.  I tried to be careful about my mechanics and stay on smooth asphalt but finally at about mile 5 I had to stop.  The pain was too much and I was worried I would hurt myself further.
Turns out my right IT band was the worser.  I walked the next mile-and-a-half home.  Defeated.
Being my hard-headed self I then went out to try my new Bike for a road test.  All I've really done so far is tool around the neighborhood getting used to the gearing and adjusting the seat.  Why should I let a bum knee hold me up?
So I headed for a ride over to Decatur (about 16 miles round trip).  The bike went great. I had to adjust the seat again, actually higher than I liked but made for better pedalling.  Only at about mile 15 did I start to get a twinge of the knee pain again.  It was actually quite funny to see how (relatively) fast I did this trip cycling as it seems like it takes forever to run it. :)  The other "funny" thing was to see my cheap-o Bell bicycle computer go flying off the handlebars at 20mph and skip into some bushes... Nowhere to be found.  It's only funny because I do actually have a sense of humor.
My knee now OK but will rest it some this week.  Will also try some stretches to get the IT band loosened up.
I thought about reinventing the wheel and devoting a blog to IT band treatments but there are plenty of other sites out there that do already.  Here's One.
Stretch on!

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

A Bike for a Runner

Today I picked up my new (cheap-o) road bike.  For the past couple months I've been thinking about doing some biking to mix up my workout routine as well as add a little bit of simple commuting here and there.  I wanted something I could do some good aerobic training with, would take a beating (at least wouldnt hurt so much in the wallet), and would let me commute a little.
Oh yeah, forgot to mention that I've never really been "into" biking so am quickly catching up on all the lingo and gear options out there.
I decided on a very lightly USED aluminum-frame noname bike with entry-level Shimano components.  New from discount online retailer this bike was $600.  I got for under $350 after just 50 miles use, and seller threw in $20 computer, clipless pedals and underseat bag.  I figure its a good cheap way to figure out exactly what I want for a serious bike one day OR its a cheaper way to figure out I'm not really a cycling kinda-guy.
I picked up a cheapo helmet, lock, and pump from Wal-mart after gawking around Performance Bicycle (a great store but will wait a bit before over-upgrading my hobby).  I zipped a few times around the block today, trying to figure out the gears and whatnot (my last bike was a 1997 Gary Fisher Marlin with gripshift shifters; not nearly as much education required). 
The specs:
Model: Mercier Orion AL ( brand) 54cm
Front Fork: Kinesis carbon fiber
Crank: TH RPM 52/42/30T 165/170/172.5
Seatpost: Al / Carbon thing (?)
Shifters: Shimano Sora STI
Brakes: Tektro
Front Derailer: Shimano Sora
Rear Derailer: Shimano Tiagra
Rims: AlexRims D22
Tires: Michelin 700x23C
Pedals: cheap-o alloy
Weight: 20 lbs
I know the purists out there will hate that I got a "cheap" bike sold at an online discounter.  While a "starter bike" costing around $800-900 at a local bike shop wasn't totally unreasonable, I just dont see the expense being worthwhile right now.  If I keep riding then this basic setup will get turned over and upgraded soon enough, and the guys at the SoPo Bike Co-op will have great fare for a stylin' fixed gear.
Run on! (and ride a little)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

This Man did it!

At just under five hours I finished my first marathon today. Chicago
was a bit warm, and sunny, leading many to jump ship and some to get
carted off. I can't say I'm super happy with my time but am
satisfied, and it certainly gives me something to improve upon.
The frst half went great - as planned - averaging a 9:30 pace.
Starting about mile 16 though things slowed down drastically. I
started hitting every water stop, walking through the stops. My run
became a shuffle and had to outright stop twice to stretch cramps out.
Finishing though was great, as was able to catch enough wind to finish
the last 1/4 strong. BTW have never felt so much muscle pain before.
What a blast! Now I'm preocupied looking for next year's.

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Friday, October 10, 2008

Here we go: Chicago 26.2

Just got dropped off at the airport and in a few minutes will be
departing for the windy city. Admittedly I'm feeling a bit anxious,
nostly worried about the possibility of failure.
In less than two days we will know.
After a night out with old college friends tonight will spend a day in
recovery and preparation.
Goodluck everyone.

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