Friday, July 18, 2008

25 June 2008 - Mt. Marcy, Lake Placid, and other stuff

On the 13th, the lovely Francine and I spent about 9 hours hiking up and down Mt. Marcy, the highest mountain in New York. 14.8 miles up and down over some really rough trails.

On the 14th, we ran the Lake Placid Marathon. With my knee not feeling bad unless I pushed it, I decided to take it really easy. Meanwhile, Francine ran a really good marathon, taking away an age group award.

After I got back, I decided to go see Terence for some more physical therapy. The following is exerpted from my newsletter:

OK, I told you my knee was goofy lately. Well, Terence has all the ligiments and stuff around it feeling pretty good now, but when he was twisting it around the other day I was feeling some pretty interesting pain. He smiled at me and said, "Let's get Ed in here and schedule an MRI."

So, it's looking like next Wednesday morning at 2:30 I'll be getting my knee scanned. And if it needs fixing, I'm going to get it fixed.

I watched an arena football game on TV once. About the only thing that impressed me about it was that one of the players had arthroscopic surgery on his knee on Wednesday, and on Saturday he was playing football. I was encouraged by that, though it was pointed out to me that no one is going to pay me many thousands of dollars to be back out running marathons the next weekend, regardless of how well it turns out.

Of course, worrying about it would be premature. The MRI might just tell me that I need to heal for a couple more weeks and quit being such a wimp. I hope that's the case.

I'm still planning on running in Carrollton, MI the end of July. Maybe it will be an early-start walk instead. My marathon streak is at 64 months in a row now. I'd hate to have to start over again.

I Threw My Brooks Shoes Away in Lake Placid
Not because I didn't like them, however. They were great shoes. You know that Brooks makes the great race shirts that have become a tradition at our marathon. You may also notice that everyone on our staff is wearing Brooks shoes as well.

The shoes I was wearing were my Brooks Adrenalines. They're the same shoes I was wearing at the FINISH LINE last October when I was shaking hands and hugging a lot of you as you crossed the line.

Then, in November and December, I wore them for seven marathons across seven continents. Starting in Beirut, Lebanon; then to Atlanta; Florence, Italy; Port Elizabeth, South Africa; Wanganui, New Zealand; Vina del Mar, Chile; and finally in the Patriot Hills in Antarctica. The shoes had a LOT of miles on them, traveling all the way around the world.

I wore them at Disney World in January for Goofy's Challenge, completing both a half and a full marathon the same weekend. And for five more marathons since then.

Last weekend in Lake Placid, the lovely Francine and I spent nine hours on Saturday hiking up and down Mt. Marcy, the highest point in New York. I was wearing my Adrenalines. Then on Sunday, my old friends were with me for their final marathon, as we ran a beautiful course in Lake Placid.

Muddy, well-worn, with a dozen or so marathons under their laces, they found their final resting place somewhere in New York.

But don't worry--I'll be wearing a new pair when I greet you at the FINISH LINE in October.

11 June 2008 Crap! Another necktie!

Yeah, your dad will never say it out loud, but he's probably thinking it. I know, probably your dad doesn't even wear ties any more. Wouldn't it be cool though, if this Father's Day, you got him something he could really ENJOY?!?! Like maybe an entry to the Metro Health Grand Rapids Marathon. (How was that--not too subtle, I hope. The bold print is an attempt at subliminal advertising.)

My knee hurts. Some tendon thing going on which has caused me a lot of aggravation this year so far. Finally I decided to go visit some of my friends at Metro Health Sports Medicine for a bit of physical therapy.

Ever go to a doctor and only to be told that you shouldn't run anymore? Most runners react to that by finding another doctor. Anyway, Dr. Ed knows better--the guys at Metro are all about getting you back in the game. So I'm doing a couple PT sessions, icing, stretching, massage, and all that other great stuff.

And when I told him that the lovely Francine and I are heading out to do the Lake Placid Marathon this week, he didn't even raise an eyebrow. Hmmm...guess he's been around a bunch of us.

We'll also be climbing Mt. Marcy on Saturday. It's the highest point in New York, and Francine hasn't been up it before. Should be fun.

Happy Father's Day everybody. And stay away from the tie rack!

4 June 2008 Medical Marijuana and other thoughts

Medicinal Marijuana, and Other Thoughts

A few years ago I ran the Hogeye Marathon in Fayetteville, Arkansas on a very rainy day. I didn't have a flight home until the next day, so I talked to some of the locals to find out where the party was after the marathon. We ended up at a guy's house, where the party was going well until everything had to stop to watch an epsode of The Simpsons. It was about medicinal marijuana. At one time Homer said, "I hear it's a gateway drug."

Last night I was keying in an entry and the guy put in the comments, "I had so much fun running the half-marathon last year, that I have to run the full this year now."

So maybe the half-marathon is a "gateway drug." It's good, just not quite enough. Gotta go back for a bigger thrill--run the whole enchilada, do the full 26.2.

You can probably figure that I don't have anything else real interesting to say this week, or I wouldn't be talking about Homer Simpson. And I should probably put in a disclaimer too--I DO NOT advocate using marijuana. I DO, however, advocate running half-marathons, full marathons, and other similarly wonderful things. I'm one of the guys who can't figure out why people needs drugs--life it constantly keeping me high anyway.

28 May 2008 - Bayshore Marathon

Yesterday was my 52nd birthday. While doing some hill work, I think I goofed my knee up again. This time I'm going to go to a doctor or something. This is pissing me off.

Saturday turned out to be a BEAUTIFUL day at the Bayshore Marathon. I ran my best marathon of the year so far (which isn't saying much--I've had my brain and body somewhere besides in training mode lately). The lovely Francine ("I'll probably never qualify for Boston again.") ran a Boston Qualifying 4:05:44, beating her time needed by fifteen seconds. Dr. Rick finished fourth Masters in personal record time of 2:50! Cathy Fenton, one of our pacers, did a personal record 3:24 and took second masters. Robert Jarrin, another of our pacers, won his age group after leaving Rick in the dust in 2:49:19. Other staff members Lynne Oosterhouse and Sara Maher were there for the half-marathon as well.

Party in the parking lot afterwards with a few of the GR crowd, cheering on the people who where still coming in. People of all shapes and sizes, but all enjoying the accomplishment of finishing a marathon. Every time I see people coming in at 5+ hours and see the look on their faces, I'm reminded of why I enjoy this so much. The accomplishment of doing something BIGGER than most people will EVER do just inspires the heck out of me.

Yesterday I bought my first furniture for my new house. If you call it furniture. It was 10 of those plastic lawn chairs. Figured I'd need them sooner or later, and we had our first regular staff meeting of the year and I needed somewhere for people to sit.

21 May 2008 - From my newsletter.

I started a newsletter for the marathon. That's the big news this week. Now it's July, and I'm going to catch up on my blog a bit. A lot of this entry was in the newsletter.

At the end of April, Francine and I closed on a new house! Nice quiet street in Forest Hills. Grand Rapids address and just a couple blocks inside Ada Township. I really like it here.

Exerpted from the newsletter:

So, what's happening around here? Last week nearly everyone I know was running the River Bank Run. Now, a lot of people are suffering what I call "Post Partum Depression." (Yes, I know it's nothing like having a baby, but I can't think of a better term for it.) They trained for a long race (if you call 25K "long") and now it's over. Never fear! You can beat that depression by picking a Fall marathon and starting right back into your training! Do I have a biased opinion on WHICH Fall marathon you should enter? Duh!

So, in the process of moving, I'm trying to consume (with the help of my friends) some of the beer that was given to me last year at the marathon. (See day.aspx for details on where the beer came from.)

One of the bottles I got was labeled "Masters IPA - T" and was brewed by Tom Townsend and Scott Oberlin. Now, normally, IPA is a bit hoppy for my taste, but this stuff was GOOD! Nice finish, left a real good taste in my mouth. Keep up the good works, Tom & Scott.

This weekend is the Bayshore Marathon in Traverse City. The lovely Francine and I are heading up there, along with other staff members Dr. Rick (who's gunning to get his Master's title back this year), Lynne Oosterhouse to do the half-marathon, and I'm probably missing a few others. Rick's been training like a madman this Spring, just won the Clydesdale A class at the River Bank, and is shooting for sub 2:50 Saturday. Which means he'll be showered and kicking back with a cigar and a beer by the time I get done. Oh well.