Boston 2017

Robert ran his 2nd Boston marathon a few weeks ago and just missed getting a PR in less than ideal conditions (hot!). His finish time was 3:16:57. Congrats to Bob! I like to tell people that of all the 50-54 year old men from Seattle (there were 5 of them), he ran the fastest time!!!

Robert’s race on Strava – follow him if you want to learn how an “elite” masters runner trains!

Next up, he’ll be running NYC in November. If the weather is nice I can’t imagine him not getting a PR there. It’s the perfect course for him.

Other Boston Shenanigans

Spectating Boston

I decided it would be fun to take videos vs photos of the elites at mile 24. I got the lead woman and lead man. Woo-hoo! And then I totally forgot how to take a video (you don’t hold down the video button!) I missed Jordan Hasay, Des Linden, Galen Rupp (I actually got a 1 sec. video of Galen), and Jared Ward. Finally I gave up and got a great photo of Meb.

After the elites went past I walked towards mile 23 and waited for Robert to come by (I figured I had over an hour to kill). I was tracking him via a Boston Marathon app and his Garmin. The app wasn’t giving me any updates and then I noticed that he’d stopped moving at mile 18 on the Garmin tracker. I was worried that something was wrong when his little dot stayed there for quite some time. I decided to close the tracker and open it again and when the map opened up he was already at mile 24. Argh! The tracker must have stalled out and he somehow snuck past me. Huge spectator fail. I walked back to our hotel and drank champagne (and then my Boston Marathon app finally started working — argh again!) 🙁

Robert arrived not long after, looking peppy, and drank a beer. That’s how he do.

Hello. I’m a lefty and I’m clumsy.

I sprained my ankle in Seattle just before we caught a Lyft to the airport. I’m not naming names but 2 someones might have contributed to me missing the bottom step of our steep stairway by a) putting their luggage at the bottom of the stairs, causing me to shift my balance while carrying my suitcase down, and b) running just under my foot, waving his fluffy butt at me, as he zoomed down the stairs. Hint: they are 2 of the 3 boys that live with me.

It was a loud and derpy fall (my suitcase went flying, etc…) but my ankle didn’t hurt that much so I wasn’t really concerned. But when we landed in Boston I could barely put my shoe on and the first several hours walking in the city were really painful. I’d signed up for the B.A.A. 5K which was on Saturday (we arrived Thursday morning) and I wasn’t at all confident that I could run.

When we went the race expo I took advantage of freebies to treat the injury — 5 minutes of TENs therapy and a free taping from a PT! And the more I walked, the better my ankle felt but I tried a few short jogs and had to stop due to pain.

By race morning I was about 75% sure I’d be walking the entire race so I self-seeded myself with the 10:00-10:59 group (originally I was going to start in the 8:00-8:59 group). The race is big (10,000 runners, I think) so by the time my group actually got to start running, the elites had already finished. I saw the male winner, Ben True (13:20 – an American record!) being interviewed as we shuffled toward the start line. Robert took great photos of Ben and Molly Huddle (2nd place female).

When I finally started running I was surprised that I didn’t have any pain. Adrenaline? Who knows. The problem was I wasn’t able to get up to my 5K goal pace until after mile one due to crowding and walkers so it ended up not being even close to the race I’d trained for (~8:40 pace). I ended up finishing in 29:00. In any case, I had a great time and was happy that I was running and not limping along. Halfway through the race I realized I was running right alongside the president of the New York City Road Runners, Peter Ciaccia. Later, I ran with Big Bird wearing Altras! My ankle hurt a bit and bruised more after the race but no real damage was done.

 

So, was it worth it to train 8 weeks for this 5K? I think so. My pace has steadily gone down gotten slower over the past 2 years and I really needed to train for speed after a year of injury and slow marathon training. By week 8, I was feeling much faster than I ever felt in 2016. In the end, I guess I don’t really care that much about my body slowing down a bit but it’s fun to experiment and I enjoy speedwork. Ultimately, running happy and healthy is still the most important thing to me.

On the other hand, how did I go from a 25:04 PR in 2015 (just after my Portland Marathon) to a very difficult 27:33 at Mercer Island (BAA doesn’t count due to the ankle) in 2017? Am I just getting old? Menopause? Am I too worried about my heart rate (my PR was just before I started heart rate training)? Am I sick*? Who knows.

*Here is where I get all negative nelly and woe is me: I saw my doctor last week because I had 2 scary incidents (one after speedwork at the track in March) where my chest hurt a bit and my left arm/neck hurt for a few hours. I was SURE that I’d had a heart attack both times (heh, even though I didn’t call 911). After bloodwork, an EKG, and an X-ray, I got “reassured” as follows: “You don’t have anemia, you don’t have a thyroid issue, your EKG was normal, your heart looks and sounds great, but your lungs are hyper-expanded, like COPD (they don’t fully exhale or something like that). But not to worry. It’s just due to your rigid, rounded ribcage (pectus carinatum) and crooked spine (scoliosis). Your lungs might hurt more after speedwork and your neck and arm are working hard to help your ribs during exhale so that can make them achey” Okay. So that’s how it is. I inefficiently breath and if I am to understand the situation correctly, this is probably why my heart rate is always so high and also why I will never be a Boston Qualifier and there’s nothing I can do to fix it. I’m getting a stress test with the cardiologist in a few weeks just to make sure nothing is up with my heart. I guess it’s better to be a healthy, deformed runner than a dead runner.

Turkeys

Seriously, just walking across a busy street in Brookline, looking grumpy.

Drinking Boston

If you follow me on Instagram then you know that while we were in Boston we drank a lot of beer. Our favorite breweries were Cambridge Brewing (bonus: they have amazing, healthy food), Trillium (despite their tasting room being in Canton which required a car to get to), and Lamp Lighter Brewing. And our favorite drinking place turned out to be just a mile from our hotel in Brookline, The Publick House. Vacation Jennifer had a lot of beer.

Beer Trip!

After our time in Boston we rented a car and took a short road trip up to Portland, Maine. We drank beers along the way (Ipswich Brewing, Tributary, Foundation, Allagash, Smuttynose, and Novare Res Bier Cafe) and I saw another turkey. I don’t know why I was so surprised to see turkeys in New England.

Moulton Street in Portland, ME

1 Comment

  1. Big Bird had to settle for Altra shoes for now. he/she/it is waiting for Oiselle to start selling running shoes.
    Also, regarding the ankle incident: I did *not* wave my fluffy butt at you! I demand a retraction.

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