Sunday, December 29, 2013

2014 LTC Schedule

If you are including a road race in your New Year's Resolutions, the Lincoln Track Club probably has a race for you.

The 2014 race schedule can be found here:

Saturday, December 28, 2013

Lincoln Marathon Registration Opening Soon

Don't forget--

Registration for the 2014 Lincoln Marathon and Half Marathon opens just after the stroke of midnight, 12:01 AM January 1, 2014!  Happy New Year's Lincoln runners!

Sunday, December 22, 2013

Country Club 5k

We had our own cheering section for the Country Club 5k Friday night!

Sunday, December 8, 2013

Holiday Run

Registration is now open for the annual Country Club Neighborhood Association 5K Holiday Run.  The race is Friday, December 20 at the Country Club of Lincoln.  Early registrants get an awesome stocking hat!  The best part of the run is the after party, featuring a keg of Oatmeal Porter donated by Zipline Brewing Co.

Monday, October 28, 2013

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Saturday, October 26, 2013

MCM Packet Pick Up

Packet pick up opens in 5 minutes! Oorah!

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Weekend Forecast

Looks like perfect weather for marathon Sunday.

Marine Corp Marathon

With the government shutdown over, the Marine Corp Marathon this weekend is officially on.

Here is a map of the course I will run on Sunday.

Sunday, October 20, 2013

The Best Time of the Year

When I returned from my double last weekend, it seemed like fall came quickly to Nebraska. This is definitely my favorite time of year to run. After taking last week off to recover, I ran three easy miles yesterday and six this morning, enjoying the cool fall weather and the change of colors. Next weekend, I end the 2013 marathon season with the Marine Corps Marathon in Washington DC.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Travel Map

According to Google Maps, I traveled 2,834 miles for my double this weekend, 
NOT counting the 52.4 miles that I ran!

#45--Atlantic City Marathon

Atlantic City, NJ
October 13, 2013

After checking out of my hotel in Baltimore, I got on I-95 and headed for Atlantic City.  I ate Lara and Power Bars in the car to refuel.  It took about 3 hours to get to AC.  I checked into the host hotel, Bally's, and walked to the expo at Caesar's.  This is the second marathon I've done where the host hotel is a casino (Baton Rouge being the other one).  It is a little weird walking through a smoke filled casino floor to pick up a marathon bib, but that's what I did.  Once I picked up my packet, I went back to my room and ordered room service, as I wasn't feeling up to venturing out to find dinner.

The race started at 8 AM, on the boardwalk right in front of Bally's.  The half and full marathons started together, but it didn't feel too congested.  The sky was overcast and it was very windy, but cool and dry.  After a brief jaunt on the boardwalk, the course turned into downtown Atlantic City.  There were a few hills early in the race, which taxed my already aching quads.  I settled into a comfortable pace after a while.  The course soon returned to the boardwalk and the half marathoners finished where we had started.  Runners doing the full continued along the Jersey shore and ran in some of the residential areas of the city, before once again returning to the boardwalk.  The last several miles were into a very stiff wind, which made the finish tough, physically and mentally.  One half mile before the finish, Rosalita by Bruce Springsteen started playing on my iPod, a happy coincidence and fitting end to my New Jersey marathon.

At the finish line I chatted with a couple runners who had also run Baltimore the day before.  We talked about the races, training strategies, and other marathons we had run.  We said good bye and I went back to the hotel to pick up my luggage, which I had to leave with the Bell man before the race, because the hotel did not offer a late check out.  I improvised as best as I could to get cleaned up and refreshed in the hotel lobby bathroom, before getting in my car and driving to Philadelphia, where I would return the rental car and board a flight back to Omaha.  I was satisfied with my time and proud to have completed my third "double-marathon" weekend.

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

#44--Baltimore Marathon

Baltimore, MD
October 12, 2013

I have wanted to visit Baltimore for a long time, so this was naturally going to be my Maryland race. The weekend started with a 3:30 AM alarm Friday in order to make my 5:50 flight out of Omaha.  After connecting in Chicago I rented a car and drove to the host hotel in downtown Baltimore.  After checking in and dropping off my luggage, I headed to the expo.  The expo offered the usual check in procedures and running related booths.

I would have liked to tour the city a bit, but I was really tired and with 52.4 miles of running ahead of me, I walked to the Lexington Market and devoured a lump crab cake, one of the city's signature dishes, at Faidley's Seafood.  Later that night I took a taxi to the Little Italy section of town and loaded up on pasta for the weekend ahead.  There were several runners also there and we compared notes and shared stories of other marathons.

The race started at 8, which I don't like because I am always up way before that and I usually need extra time after the race to get checked out of the hotel, make a flight, etc.  The hotel offered a 1PM checkout, which would be cutting it close.  I also had to make it to Atlantic City by 6PM to pick up my packet.  It shouldn't be a problem, but I was unfamiliar with what traffic on I-95 would be like.

Although the forecast called for rain, the start was dry with temperatures in the mid 60s.  With the humidity, it felt much warmer than that though.  In a departure from other races, the marathon and marathon relay started at 8 AM in one place, with the half marathon runners starting roughly 90 minutes later at a point near the half way mark.  This made for a less congested start, which was nice.  One noticeable change from previous marathons was an obviously enhanced police presence.  Security measures were tighter and the fact that bomb sniffing dogs patrolled the start reminded all of the Boston Marathon tragedy.

The race is considered to be pretty hilly, and that was certainly the case.  There were also TONS of pot holes in the roads, so you really had to watch your step.  The course was a good glimpse of the city.  Lots of miles along the harbor, through the many parks highlighted by various monuments and sculptures, and a good deal of time witnessing the poverty in the housing projects just outside of downtown.

I ran an easy pace, but not as easy as I would like.  I had to be done in time to get back to the hotel, shower, and drive to New Jersey.  I finished in just over 4 1/2 hours. The half marathoners who joined the race finished at about the same time.  Although the start was not congested, the finish was.  There were long lines for food that I didn't have time to wait in.   I grabbed by medal and a bottle of water at the finish, and ran about another half mile to the hotel.  I took a fast shower, grabbed by luggage, and checked out right at 1PM.  I got in my rented Hyundai and headed for Atlantic City, NJ.

Sunday, October 13, 2013

Baltimore Marathon Finisher Badge

Pictures from Atlantic City

The start and finish for the Atlantic City Marathon, 
in front of Bally's Casino, 
on the famous Atlantic City Boardwalk.

Picture I took of the Jersey shoreline from the boardwalk, 
around mile 12 and 22 of the marathon.

The hotel lobby bathroom where I "showered" after the Atlantic City Marathon. 
 I made a huge mess and made quite a few guests very uncomfortable, I think.  Oh well, should have given me a late check out!

#44 and #45 in the books

This weekend I completed my third double marathon weekend, running in Baltimore on Saturday and Atlantic City on Sunday.  My combined time was the "fastest" of any of the doubles I've done.  I use the word fast, VERY loosely there.  I'll have full reports on each race.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Ankle Replacement

I am being asked a lot about a TV segment the other night about ankle replacement surgery.  Bryan/LGH is advertising a podiatrist who claims to be the only one doing the procedure in Lincoln.  The segment was misleading at best. 

Ankle replacement surgery is a procedure I perform and offer to patients whom I believe are good candidates for the procedure.

To find out more about ankle replacement surgery, visit:

Monday, September 30, 2013

No Meat Athlete coming to Lincoln

There are many endurance athletes out there who are having great success on a plant based diet.  One of them, Matt Frazier, will be making a stop in Lincoln on his nationwide book tour.  Matt, the "No Meat Athlete" will be at the Lincoln Running Company October 16th.

If you are interested in learning how a plant based diet can fuel your endurance efforts, I encourage you to check out Matt's website, follow his blog, or better yet, come visit him on one of his tour stops.

Omaha Half

This post is a little late, but congrats to my wife who completed the Omaha half marathon last weekend, 5 months after having a baby!  Margot and I were on hand to cheer her on.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

Ultra Grand Slam

People ask what I will do if and when I finish my 50 state goal.  I would definitely like to do an ultramarathon some day.  However, I do not think I will do FOUR IN ONE YEAR like Tim McCargill.

The Omaha man just became the first Nebraskan to complete the Ultra Grand Slam, completing four prestigious 100 mile trail races in the same year!

He has only been running for a few years.  Wow.  Read his story here.

Saturday, August 10, 2013

Not So FAST™........

There is a new procedure that has emerged for the treatment of tennis elbow, plantar fasciitis, and achilles tendonitis. The FAST ™ technique offers a minimally invasive treatment for these and other conditions.  At this point, there is very little in the way of peer reviewed literature supporting its use.  I am intrigued by the technique and will likely pursue the training necessary to provide this procedure to my patients.

Right now, there are interventional radiologists in the area who are aggressively marketing this technique, and do so without requiring a referral from the patient's primary care physician or orthopaedic surgeon.  I have several concerns about this trend, and caution patients the following:

1.  A radiologist is not trained to diagnose or treat conditions of the musculoskeletal system.  Every case of heel pain is not plantar fasciitis.

2.  Although the procedure seems to be safe, if there is a complication, a radiologist is not trained to diagnose or manage it.

3.  The technique is being done for conditions that 9 times out of 10, either get better on their own with no treatment, or respond to cheap and conservative treatment such as rest, ice, stretching, bracing, immobilization, NSAIDs, etc.

With that being said, I do see patients for whom this technique is probably a reasonable alternative to a much bigger and potentially riskier procedure.  In those cases, I have recommended that patients consider it.

Rest assured, we at Nebraska Orthopaedics are familiar with this technique and interested in its application.  When we are convinced that it is a safe and effective treatment option, we plan to offer it to our patients in the context of a holistic orthopaedic treatment protocol.

The Best Diet Advice, Ever

"Eat food, not too much, mostly plants."

These words, written by Michael Pollan, probably summarize the best nutritional advice there is.  For those of you who do not know who he is, Pollan is an author who has written several ground breaking books on food and health.  His 2007 book, "The Omnivore's Dilemma" changed the way that I look at and think about our food supply.  Pollan examines why we eat the way we do, and how the food industry has frankly, made us fat and very unhealthy.  His 2009 follow up, "In Defense of Food," builds on his previous work and gives the reader simple rules to follow in order to eat the most healthfully.

Thursday, August 8, 2013

Summer "Reading"

I don't get much time to read for pleasure.  My long runs, however, do allow me the opportunity to listen to audiobooks.

I recently finished "Finding Ultra: Rejecting Middle Age, Becoming One of the World's Fittest Men, and Discovering Myself" by Rich Roll.  Roll was a former collegiate swimmer and recovering alcoholic who, nearing his 40th birthday, found himself unable to climb a flight of stairs without getting short of breath.  He worried that he wouldn't be around to see his 2 year old daughter get married.  What followed was a remarkable transformation that saw Roll become one of the greatest ultra-athletes in the world.  Among his many accomplishments was completing an iron distance triathlon on 5 different Hawaiian islands in just under 7 days.

Roll gets deeply personal about the struggles he has had over the years and how he has overcome them.  He shares training and nutrition advice.  He credits most of his success to his adoption of a plant-based diet.  Although I don't think I'm ready to make that leap just yet, Roll delivers a compelling argument for doing so.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

Thunder Run

Although online registration is closed, you can still sign up for the 2013 Lincoln Track Club Thunder Run.  The flat and fast out and back 5K is held at the Lincoln Airport.  I've run this race a couple of times.  It is usually really hot on the concrete and the long taxiways and wide open spaces make the distance seem longer than 5K.  It is a unique course, though, and with military aircraft there for viewing and picture taking, one that kids seem to have fun at.

Monday, August 5, 2013

What's Left?

I get asked a lot about which marathons I have left.  Here they are, with a tentative schedule.  If it works out, I should finish on the Strip in Las Vegas next year!

Baltimore, MD and Atlantic City, NJ: Double this fall
Washington, DC (Marine Corp): This fall
Delaware: Spring 2014
Washington and Oregon: Double spring/summer 2014
Alaska: Summer 2014
Maine: Fall 2014
New Mexico: Fall 2014
Las Vegas: Fall/Winter 2014

10 marathons in a little more than 12 months.  It is my most ambitious schedule yet.

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Lincoln Man Runs Across Iowa

Pete Kostelnick is believed to be the first person to run RAGBRAI, the annual bike ride across Iowa.  He completed the 423 mile journey in 7 days.  WOW!

Friday, August 2, 2013

The Perfect Recovery Drink

You may not know it, but chocolate milk is the perfect recovery drink after a muscle intensive workout.  It contains the ideal 3:1 ratio of carbs to protein.  It contains whey protein, which is quickly absorbed and digested to provide essential amino acids to damaged muscle, and casein protein, which is more slowly absorbed and digested, and counteracts post-workout muscle breakdown.  Chocolate milk is cheaper than most recovery drinks and, in my opinion and my 2 and 3 year old boys' opinion, tastes great!

Tuesday, July 16, 2013

Updated Map

Getting to put a big "X" through Montana makes the map look better!

Monday, July 15, 2013

Pictures from Missoula

#43--Missoula Marathon

Missoula, MT
July 14, 2013

This weekend I completed my 43rd marathon and 41st state, running in the 7th annual Missoula Marathon.  I've gone almost 4 months since my last marathon, which seems like an eternity.

My sister watched our sons for the weekend, while my wife and I took our 3 month old daughter on the trip.  We flew from Lincoln to Denver to Missoula and back.  Missoula is a very cool college town nestled in between the mountains of western Montana.  It is beautiful, as anybody who has seen "A River Runs Through It" can attest to.

We arrived Friday night after an uneventful flight.  The Expo and packet pick-up was held at a downtown park, where the finish was going to be for the race.  There was a 5K Saturday morning that added to the general level of excitement.  Packet pick-up was easy and after that we walked through the Missoula Farmer's Market.  I've been to many and this was one of the best.  After checking out the vibrant downtown and getting some lunch, it was time to get off my feet and rest for the marathon.

The marathon and half marathon were each point-to-point courses, starting at 6 AM.  All runners had to take busses to the start.  I had to get up at 3:15 in order to eat, hydrate, and get to the bus on time.  The start of the race was punctuated by fireworks provided by the University of Montana Army ROTC.  Temperatures were in the high 40's and it was calm and clear at the start.

The course was mostly flat and very scenic.  I ran the first 1/2 in 2:07.  There was a long steep hill at this point that got me out of my groove.  I was a little under-trained for this race, too, as my achilles has been acting up and I've been forced to cut back on my training for the last 6 weeks or so.  Add to that the upper respiratory congestion that I caught from my daughter, and the last half was pretty tough.  I held on to finish in just over 4:37, a very average time for me the last several years.

The finish area downtown had lots of food, drinks, and music to entertain runners and their families.  We enjoyed as much of this as our 3 month old would allow, and then it was back to the hotel to shower and rest.

The Missoula Marathon was a great experience.  The city is beautiful and really embraces the race, with a whole weekend of activities and events.  The race itself is well organized and executed.  With 1,500 runners doing the full and 3,500 runners doing the half, it is just about the perfect size race, too, in my opinion.  I am glad I chose Missoula for my Montana marathon.

Sunday, July 14, 2013

#43 in the books

Completed my 43rd marathon today in Missoula, MT (41st state).  This was my daughter's very first marathon trip.  Although she gave me her runny nose and congestion on race day, it was nice to have her support!  I'll have a full report later.

Wednesday, June 5, 2013

National Running Day

Today, June 5, is National Running Day.  Do yourself a favor today and get out and run!  Even better, do it with a friend.

Monday, May 27, 2013

Most Grueling Sport?

The Tour de France has been called the most grueling endurance event in the world.  This spring, Zoe Romano, who once ran across the USA, is attempting to run the entire Tour de France course.  She is running a marathon a day through the French Alps to raise money for the World Pediatric Project.

Read about her "feat" and listen to the story here:

Friday, May 24, 2013

Memorial Day Weekend

Memorial Day weekend is here and for me, that usually means traveling to a race somewhere.  Not this year, not with a newborn baby at home!  Despite the craziness with a baby girl and her 18 month old and 3 year old brothers at home, I've been able to stay somewhat on track for the next marathon, later this summer in Montana.

Some highlights of Memorial Day weekends past:

1996 Bolder Boulder 10K-my first road race, and the one that hooked me on running
2001 Wyoming Marathon-toughest and slowest marathon I have done, still.  Beautiful, though.
2009 Madison Marathon-the weekend my wife and I found out she was pregnant with our first son.
2011 Vermont City Marathon-relaxing trip with just the adults, while my sister watched Linus.  He still insists on wearing the running shirt that we bought for him at the expo, even though it is so small that it hurts his head to put on and take off.
2012 Bayshore Marathon-Fun family trip with both boys in tow.

Have a fun, safe Memorial Day weekend.  I hope it includes some running!

Monday, May 6, 2013

Lincoln Marathon

Congratulations to all those who ran the Lincoln Half and Full Marathons yesterday.  I want to single out my friend, Ryan, who completed his second full marathon in less than a month, less than one year after having his ruptured achilles tendon repaired.  Truly an accomplishment to be very proud of.

With the widening of the bike trail, the race should be bigger and better than ever next year!

Monday, April 22, 2013

A Week of Highs and Lows

The nation is still recovering from the tragedies of last week in Boston and Texas.  Like most of you, I was transfixed by the bombing at the Boston marathon and the manhunt in Massachusetts.  I was also anxiously awaiting the arrival of my newest running partner.  The wait came to an end yesterday morning with the birth of my daughter.  Mom and baby are both doing well.  After catching up on some much needed rest, I celebrated with a 4 mile pace run.  Margot will join me as soon as she can hold her head up!

Saturday, March 30, 2013

Lincoln Marathon to Expand?

As the Marine Corp Marathon registration sell out showed, marathon participation continues to explode.  The growth of the Lincoln Marathon has been slowed by the "bottle-neck" that runners experience on the trail next to highway 2.  With renovation of the trail set to go forward, organizers expect the race to expand soon.

Friday, March 29, 2013

The People's Marathon

It is really a shame that the registration fiasco has put a stain on the Marine Corp Marathon for 2013.  The marathon known as "The People's Marathon" has a well deserved reputation for putting on a first class, mega-marathon, with military precision.  No surprise there!

I am very much looking forward to this race in the fall.  By then, I think most people will have forgotten about glitches on Wednesday.

Here is a link to the motivation video from the race website:

Wednesday, March 27, 2013


I was able to successfully register for the Marine Corp Marathon in Washington, DC this fall.

Online registration was a disaster!  I was lucky enough to get in pretty quickly.  The race sold out in less than 2.5 hrs.

I expect this marathon will be a lottery from now on.  Runners who didn't get in are still able to race with one of the many charity partners.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

#41--Instant Classic Marathon

Chesterfield, VA
March 16, 2013

I've only done one trail marathon before.  That was a race outside Laramie, Wyoming.  That race was really hard and I've avoided trail races ever since.  I only signed up for this one in Virginia because I was going to be able to make a double weekend out of it.

I didn't do a lot of research about the race.  When I did, I found this elevation map.  Although altitude wouldn't be an issue, the dozens and dozens of climbs might be.

I was pretty nervous going into this.  The weather forecast didn't help.  It was supposed to rain the night before the race and all day Saturday.  When I woke up Saturday I looked outside and it was still dry.  I put on my trail shoes and headed to the race.  A few minutes before the start, it began to rain.  There were maybe 100 runners at the start, and nobody was fazed by it.  The race started at 7:45, and we all dashed into the trails of Pochohontas State Park.  

As far as trail races go, this was pretty easy, I think.  There were some creeks to cross, tree roots to hurdle, and rocks to avoid, but it wasn't too bad.  As the map shows, there were tons of hills.  You were either running up one or down one.  There were very few straight, flat stretches.

The race ended up being a lot of fun.  The trail was pretty sandy, so it absorbed a lot of the rain.  There was certainly some muddy areas, but nothing like I had feared.  After 30 or 40 minutes the rain stopped, and by the end of the race the sun actually came out.  It never got too hot.  The scenery was great and the course was challenging, but not terrible.  There were no spectators, basically, only volunteers every 3 miles or so at the aid stations.  These were stocked with skittles, M&Ms, pretzels, water, and gatorade.  I walked up the steepest hills in order to try and conserve energy for the marathon in North Carolina the following day.  I finished at 5:07:53.  I grabbed some water and gatorade, fruit, and a burger.  I walked to my car and changed into some dry clothes and hit the road.  

This was a no-frills race in just it's second year of existence.  Packet pick up was at the local running store, with no expo.  There were no timing chips.  There was no music or spectators on the course.  Volunteers grilled burgers and brats at the finish for runners.  As somebody who has up until now preferred large urban marathons (NYC is still my favorite), this small, low-key trail marathon in Virginia was a real treat.  When the race organizers decided to call it the "Instant Classic," I think they were on to something.

Sunday, March 17, 2013

#42--Tobacco Road Marathon

Cary, North Carolina
March 17, 2013

This was the second part of my "Atlantic Coast Double."  After a tough trail race yesterday, I had my doubts going into this one.

The race was in Cary, North Carolina, which is a town right next to Durham.  I made it in time for packet pick up.  The expo was small and efficient.  The race director was walking around talking to runners and answering questions.  A very nice touch.  The Embassy Suites was the host hotel, and they had a pasta buffet the night before the race.  It didn't cost much more than most pre-race pasta dinners I've had, and it was very good.

Transportation was kind of a pain.  The start and finish was at the USA baseball complex, 10 miles from the host hotel, which is strange.  Parking at the baseball fields was limited, and you had to pre-register for a parking pass, a detail that I neglected.  If you didn't have a parking pass, you were forced to drive 6 miles or so to an off site parking area, where busses would drop you off at the start.  Runners were encouraged to get there at 5AM for a 7 AM start.  This seemed excessive, but with memories of my near miss in Arizona last year still pretty fresh in my mind, I was there by 5:15.  We made it to the start a full hour before the start of the race and I did my best to keep warm and occupied.

The race started promptly at 7.  There were a few rolling hills the first 2.5 miles.  From there, the course   turned on to the American Tobacco Trail.  We spent the next 20 miles on this trail.  For Lincoln runners, think of the Mopac trail from 84th St heading east.  The trail was soft, flat, and straight.  Although it was pretty boring, my quads needed a break after the hills yesterday.  Aid stations were frequent and well stocked.  There were lots of porta-potties, too.

I ran the fist half in 2:16 and the last half in 2:25.  Considering the race I ran yesterday, I was pretty happy.  The post race party at the finish seemed like it was going to be fun, but I had to catch the shuttle back to the parking lot, get in my car, drive to the hotel, shower, change and go to the airport.

This was my 8th marathon since Labor Day.  I don't race again until July.  I am looking forward to taking a couple of weeks off!

Saturday, March 16, 2013

#41 in the books

I completed the first part of my double weekend today.  I finished the "Instant Classic Marathon" in Chesterfield, VA.  It was a rare trail race for me.  I took these pictures from the course.  Next up, North Carolina!

Wednesday, March 13, 2013

Training Update

I think I am ready for my second "Double Marathon Weekend" in the last 6 months.  This weekend I will travel east to run a marathon on Saturday in Virginia and North Carolina on Sunday.

My training has gone well.  Two weeks ago I ran back-to-back 20 milers to get ready for this, and those went well.  The 20 mile run on Sunday was only 1 second per mile slower than Saturday.  My toughest training run was an 8 miler this past Sunday at the peak of our snow storm in Lincoln.  It was basically 8 miles of high knees through drifts as high as a foot, with gusting winds up to 30 mph.  When I reached my four mile turn around point, the shoe prints I had just put down in the snow were already covered up!

I feel like I am in good shape for this challenge.  Boot camps have helped a lot with my strength and ability to recover (Thanks to Steve, at Good Life Fitness!) and I've been able to shed a few pounds, which always helps.

I'll have updates from the road this weekend.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

No Time to Taper

With my next double marathon weekend 3 weeks away, I haven't had much time to recover from Myrtle Beach.  I took two days off after the marathon before resuming training.  I ran 2 easy miles Tuesday and 3 on Thursday, and did boot camps Wednesday and Friday.  The week could be called one of "active recovery."  This weekend I ran 12 miles Saturday and Sunday each.  These back to back long runs prepare you mentally and physically to go out run a long distance when despite being sore and tired.  This week I'll do 4 and 5 mile runs during the week.  Next weekend I'll do back to back 20 milers and then taper for the double.  I joked with my wife the other day that I have been sore since 1998.  While not exactly true, it's not much of a stretch, either.

Friday, February 22, 2013

#40--Myrtle Beach Marathon

Myrtle Beach, South Carolina
February 16, 2013

With Myrtle Beach, I continued my winter swing through the south.  Winter marathons are tough to train for and can be even harder to run, with unpredictable travel and weather.  A few years ago, this race was actually cancelled because of snow!

I left on Valentine's Day and took my wife.  Somehow, I convinced her that it would be a very romantic trip to watch me run yet another marathon.  My sister watched the kids for the weekend and we made it to Myrtle Beach easily.  I was lucky enough to find a nice restaurant for dinner that night.

The expo was small and efficient.  One of the benefactors of the marathon is a preserve for rare wildlife.  The highlight of the expo was seeing several baby tiger cubs playing with each other.

The race started at 6:30 AM.  I like early starts because I am usually up anyway and sooner you start, the sooner you finish!  It was cool at the start and the temperatures were forecast to be in the low 50's for most of the day.  It was perfect conditions.  Continuing with the wildlife theme, there was an elephant at the start line to help see runners off.  I'm glad he or she wasn't easily spooked.

I ran a slow, steady race.  We had walked around a bunch the day before, so my legs were a little bit tired.  The course was flat and fast.  Surprisingly, there weren't as many ocean views as I had hoped for, but there were a few.  Aid stations were plentiful and well stocked.

I finished in just under 4:40, running almost even splits for the two halves of the race.  I met my wife at the finish and we walked to a nearby movie theater.  I was the only one at the movies with my sweaty running clothes on, a race bib on my shirt, and a medal around my neck.  Isn't this how you are supposed to spend Valentine's weekend?  

When we walked out of the theater, a very cold rain had started, which turned into a light snow later that night.  As we packed our bags to return home, I realized there was more snow on the ground and it was colder in Myrtle Beach than in Lincoln.  Not exactly the getaway I had hoped for.  We had a nice seafood dinner that night, but anxiously checked the weather.  Fortunately, the flights home the next day went smoothly.  I was happy to have finished my 40th marathon, anxious to see my two sons, and ready to train for the double marathon in Virginia/North Carolina next month.

Sunday, February 17, 2013

#40 in the books

Finished the Myrtle Beach Marathon yesterday, crossing South Carolina off the list.  This was marathon #40, and state #38.  Getting closer!

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Training Update

I am in my final week taper for the next marathon.  I'll run an easy 8 miles today.  Next week I travel to Myrtle Beach, South Carolina.  In 2010 the race was cancelled because of a rare snowstorm in the area.  Right now the weather forecast calls for mild temperatures.  

State Farm Registration Open

The annual State Farm 10 mile run on the Mopac trail represents the beginning of the 2013 race calendar for the Lincoln Track Club.  It's a great way to gauge your readiness for the Lincoln Marathon or 1/2 in May.  Registration for the event is now open.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Updated Map

#39--The Louisiana Marathon

Baton Rouge, Louisiana
January 20, 2013

This was just the second year for this marathon.  I always thought I would run my LA marathon in New Orleans, but this fit better into my schedule this year.  It was a well executed, no frills marathon.

Getting there was pretty easy, with an on time connecting flight from Houston.  I checked in at the host hotel/casino, the Belle of Baton Rouge.  This was kind of an odd fit for a host hotel.  There was a very nice, small packet pick up and expo.  The pasta dinner Saturday night featured two inspirational speakers, one woman battling recurring brain cancer while she competes marathons and triathlons, and a man who is a bilateral arm amputee who, despite his disability, has done nearly 100 tri's with a special bike and unorthodox swimming technique.

The race started at 7 AM in front of the state capitol.  Conditions were cool, calm, and clear.  It was a relatively small field of runners, which was nice.  The course ran through the cypress tree lined parks and neighborhoods of Baton Rouge, and included a segment through the campus of LSU.  I felt good and ran a very steady race, crossing the half mark in just under 2:15 and finishing in just over 4:30.  Aid stations were well stocked and plentiful.  There were very few spectators and basically no entertainment on the course.  I don't need either one, but they are kind of nice to have.  I have found that Sunday marathons in a southern city generally aren't well attended by local spectators.

The finish line was again in front of the state capitol.  There was a great finishers area, with fruit, water, beer, and local flavors including red beans and rice and jambalaya.  The latter two are just about the perfect recovery food, with a great combination of carbs and protein. 

I had a flight to catch so I wasn't able to stick around for the post race party, which was getting a lot of buzz.  After a quick shower, I headed back to the airport.  Proud of finishing my 39th race, I was nevertheless humbled by the lady sitting next to me who just finished #361.  Now she is crazy!

Sunday, January 20, 2013

Louisiana Marathon Pictures

The race start and finish was in front of the Louisiana Capitol building and those at the finish enjoyed a kettle of Louisiana Jambalaya.

#39 in the books

I ran my 39th marathon today, completing the Louisiana Marathon in Baton Rouge, LA or as my 3 year old calls it "Bat-Man-Roos."  I'll have a full report on the race later.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Laissez les bons temps rouler!

This is French-Cajun for "Let the good times roll."

This weekend I leave for the Louisiana Marathon to be run in Baton Rouge, LA.  This will be the first of four marathons to be run between now and St. Patrick's Day.

Thursday, January 17, 2013

Track Dedication

Those who followed the Lincoln Marathon last year undoubtedly were inspired by Team Thatcher.  They met their goal of raising money to fund a track at Thatcher's school.

Read more about it here:

Friday, January 11, 2013

Today's Tip

In a previous post, I stated that the optimum stride rate is 180.  If you are under this, to increase your stride rate, pump your arms faster and your legs will naturally follow.  Take quick, light steps.  This will lead to a quicker stride rate and rduce the impact stress that causes injury.

Source: Runner's World Daily Calendar

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Weekend Update

I did 10 miles yesterday and 20 miles today.  Thanks to the Lincoln Parks & Rec for keeping the trails plowed and usable during these winter months.  With temperatures in the mid teens during the early morning hours, it was almost like running in an ice bath, so I actually don't feel too sore.  Now I begin a two week taper for the Louisiana Marathon in Baton Rouge, LA.

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Find Your Pace

Everybody has their own pace, but there is general consensus on the optimum stride rate.  Do you know what it is?

The answer is 180 strides-per-minute.

Test your stride rate by counting your steps for 30 seconds on your next run, and then doubling it.  The answer is your stride-per-minute.  The closer you are to 180, the more efficient your pace will be.

2013 Lincoln Track Club Races Announced

The calendar of events for the Lincoln Track Club has been released for this year.  Mark your calendar for these great races.