Eric Van De Vens Blog

Not just another Word Press blog!

It’s that time……Again!

I have been a bit lax since the last race in February. It seems, since we moved from Broward to Palm City, we seem to be doing a lot more activities! That is a good thing! ūüėČ

Meanwhile…..back in running land….it is time to start training for the Walt Disney World Wine and Dine half marathon!

To bring everyone up to speed, as I sated, we have been busy. With Cub Scouts, work, and all sorts of “events”, time has grown scarce for training. Then there was the “knee” issue. Yes, “that” knee!

Some time in late May, my left knee began to hurt and lock up. It appears as though something has broken inside the knee and is bouncing around. Off to Doctor Baylis to see what is going on. An X-ray was taken, and it pretty much tells the story.


The knee with the screws in it is my left knee. If you look at the other knee, you can see a nice, smooth space between the knee bones. On my left knee, there is little space and, as I suspected for some time, my knee has worn unevenly which results in my left foot pointing out further than my right foot. The cure for this is…..nothing!

What apparently happened, is that a portion of bone has broken off above the bottom screw in my left knee. That bone, along with other debris, is wandering around in the space in my knee. Because there is no space, these tiny fragments cause the knee to lock up…until they work their way down past the middle of my knee. Then, they languish there for a while.

Dr. Baylis said we could go in and retrieve them, but, we would have to know where they are to get them out. He would only be able to remove the pieces he could get to and if a bunch are down the inner side of my right knee, that would require several incisions to be made just to find them. And, if we couldn’t find them, then it would be a wasted surgery.

Another option would be knee replacement. Which I do not wish to have done. All I hear is how the only thing the replacement corrects is the pain. I can handle the pain. Losing more mobility and the ability to do a lot of things I still enjoy, isn’t really an option at this time.

Looking back on previous years, for whatever reason, in March, April and May, I seem to have these occurrences. Coincidentally, that is also the busiest time of the year for my work. Navigating attics seems to aggravate my left knee, as well as my right knee and back!

So……on to plan F! I am currently getting hyaluronic acid injections. That combined with my newest brace from DonJoy, should allow me to continue to run.


I have also managed to find a set of walking around shoes. The New Balance 670V1s, which fit perfectly. The size is 11.5 4E. As my Saucany shoes are to narrow, I am going to try the New Balance M990V3 shoes which are for mild over-pronators. Hopefully these will work as the Saucanys have created a callous on my left inside front foot.

Right now, I am in day four of the 7-day Total Body Cleanse. I try to do this every 3 months, but it has been a long time since the last “clean-out”! A lot of people have negative things to say about these body cleanses, but I can say, that the one I use, from GNC, works. Usually, by day three, I am feeling much better. This time, it took until day four, but, I am starting to get my energy back.

I am pretty sure, staying on the BSN NoXplod and Nitrix for six months without a break is responsible for my sluggishness as of late. Your body adapts to these supplements and at some point, they do not work. The good news about the cleanse, is that gradually, I am able to tolerate fruit and vegetables. That will be incorporated into the new low carbohydrate diet.

Training will be broken up into to segments, weight training and running.

Weight Training: Monday, Wednesday, and Friday, complete body workouts using lighter weights, 3 sets of 12 repetitions to start. Golds Gym has an entire row of machines starting with leg press and ending with arms. I can go right down the row and use every machine!

Running: Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday will be running days. Tuesday and Thursday, shorter runs, and Saturday will be a longer run. I will be following the Jeff Galloway running program, and will just start with whatever week it is now as I think I am two weeks late for the very beginning of the program.

Weight Loss: Living the “high-life” adds pounds…quickly! The official starting weight for this training program is 244.5 pounds! YIKES!!

The good news there, is that eating all of this fruit tends to cause bloating and some water retention. That should subside after the cleanse is finished.

We have already paid for the race, and thanks to our Mousekeplanner Extraordinaire Jennifer Upton, our rooms are reserved for the race. All that remains is the training. Hopefully, all of my body parts will hold out and I plan, if all goes well, to run a personal best. I don’t know what the numbers will be, but they will have to be faster than a 2:45 time.

Stay tuned!


July 24, 2015 Posted by | Health and Fitness, Running | , , , , | Leave a comment

A1A Half Marathon Wrap-up!

This was one of the best races and times we have had in a long time!

I will start with a trip down memory lane. But first……….

I decided to start Saturday morning with a soak in the hot tub!

The hot tub

The hot tub


Now, on to memory lane…..

This is the 11th Avenue Bridge. It is one of the few bridges here in South Florida, that turns instead of going up like a draw bridge. To the immediate left of this bridge, was a home owned by one of my fathers friends. He used to let me come over and crab off of his dock. Good times for sure!


The 11th Avenue bridge.


This is the Evergreen cemetery. It is the one of the oldest cemeteries in Broward County. Back when I was in high school, we used to jump the fence, which was lower than it is now, and have parties til all hours of the morning. The phrase was, we are having a party Saturday night…and everyone was dying to get in!


Evergreen Historic Cemetery


After driving around Broward County for a while, it was time to visit the Expo. As always, this Expo has just about everything you could want for running and fitness. We got our race packet, shirt, poster, sport beans, all in 40 minutes!











Lexus isle at the Expo.


Next, we took Marshall to his Aunt Rose Maries where he got to spend the weekend! After that, time to check into the hotel. When I went to get a hotel for this race, everything was booked, at least what was in our price range. So, we had to “settle” for the Ritz Carlton! The standard rate for this room was $599.00 per night……………unless……you have Marriott Rewards points! Since we use our Marriot credit card for everything, we have an abundance of points, so, 50,000 points deducted, and the room was free!! And what a room!

This has to be the best hotel room we have ever stayed at. Click on the link Ritz Carlton, just to look at the place. Below are a few pictures of our room and the view. As an aside, the service is unbelievable! Everything you want is a fingertip away!

The Bed

The Bed

Bathroom vanity

Bathroom vanity

The bathtub

The bathtub

The toilet room..with a phone and a TV in the bathroom!

The toilet room..with a phone………… and a TV in the bathroom!


The view from our balcony.

The view from the 7th floor pool deck.

The view from the 7th floor pool deck.

After we settled in, we decided to have a few drinks on the patio overlooking the Intracoastal waterway. The Miami boat show was going on the same weekend, but we had our own private boat show!

Bridge opening.....

Bridge opening…..



A nice boat....

A nice boat….

A real nice boat......

A real nice boat……

A really, really, really nice boat!!

A really, really, really nice boat!!

After viewing our own private boat show, it was time for dinner. We decided to walk around to burn off a few drinks and ended up at the Quarterdeck Lounge. This is a place that as youngsters, we used to frequent. Maybe when you get older, you notice more, but this place was a dump. After waiting 20 minutes for service, and none ever came, and being subjected to a smoker who appeared to be in the final stages of some sort of death disease, we decided to eat elsewhere!

We walked around some more and ended up back at the hotel to see about getting dinner reservations. All booked up. We walked back down “the strip”, and ended up at the Bubba Gump Shrimp Company. Looking at the menu, there wasn’t much that appealed to me, so we moved on. Eventually, we arrived at the H20 Cafe.

The wife used her phone to look up the reviews and most were positive, so, we decided to eat here for our Valentines dinner.

We were seated immediately and our waiter asked for our drink order. My current training drink is Jose Cuervo tequila and diet Sierra Mist. It is a zero carbohydrate drink and not as fattening as my normal Tequila Sunrise. Since they had no Diet drinks of any kind, we had to improvise. Tequila, Seltzer water, lemon, lime, and Splenda!

With the drinks out of the way, time to order food.

First was the appetizer,¬†Cozze Posilipo….which is “Mussels in a light tomato wine sauce with red onions and a touch of fresh tomato and basil.”

Cozze Posilipo  Mussels in a light tomato wine sauce with red onions and a touch of fresh tomato and basil.

Cozze Posilipo
Mussels in a light tomato wine sauce with red onions and a touch of fresh tomato and basil.

This was absolutely fantastic! I was tempted to get another order, but seeing the portion size, figured the dinner would be plenty!

Speaking of which, I had the NY Strip Steak and the wife had the Risotto Champagne. Both were outstanding! I highly recommend this restaurant if you are ever in the area.

New York Strip Steak

New York Strip Steak

Risotto Champagne Risotto with baby shrimp and asparagus in a champagne cream sauce.

Risotto Champagne
Risotto with baby shrimp and asparagus in a champagne cream sauce.

The view of Fort Lauderdale Beach from our dinner table!

The view of Fort Lauderdale Beach from our dinner table!

Time to head back to the room to watch the sunset and go to bed around 8:30 pm.





Nite nite……..

What is that sound? Ah, the alarm… is 3:00 am!!!

Remember that hotel service I mentioned earlier?

Can you send us up a pot of hot coffee?

Can you send us up a pot of hot coffee?

Although it was 20 dollars, it was worth it!!!!! And, it arrived 10 minutes after the call and was fresh and hot!!

Now it was time to bathe, get dressed, and do everything else that you have to do before you head out to a race. We made a phone call to the valet, yes, it is mandatory valet parking, and when we got downstairs, our car was waiting for us! We even picked up a girl runner who was waiting for a cab, and we offered her a ride to the race.

Five minutes later, with a little “creative” driving, all routes to and from the hotel were blocked off and I had to navigate several cones, we were at the VIP parking lot, which is at the finish line. So far, so good.

Next we got on the bus and headed to the starting line, which is normally a 15 minute ride. Unfortunately, due to construction, several of the “usual” roads were blocked off and our driver seemed to have a hard time understanding what some of us locals were trying to tell her! Eventually, we ended up near the starting line, the driver pulled off to the side of the road, and we all got off and made our way to the start.


The Starting Line!

We only had to wait 20 minutes until the Star Spangled Banner was played on a saxophone. Then the wheeled racers were off. At 6:00 am, the race started. This race, unlike the Disney races or any other race we have run, is a mass start race. Everyone gets into position by markers for their projected pace. The only issue with this is that some of the slower runners, jump to the front of the line, which, later in the race, causes some runners, to have to weave around these other runners after you catch up to them.

In any event, I preferred this start as I only had to wait 6 minutes to get to the Starting line as opposed to the half hour or more at Disney.

As I started to run, I realized that I felt really good. I had no pain and also, no tightening up of my calves. I was running effortlessly, but still trying to keep a 13:30 pace.  For the first nine miles, I never was slower than a 13:29 pace. The first 4 miles were run in an average pace of 12:55!

5K time:38:48, which is  a personal best! The view of the 5K marker, which is now a castle instead of the previous sailboat.

5K castle.

5K castle.

Running along, at miles four and five, the sunrise….



Now it was time to focus on running. I was running at a consistent pace, 13:04 or so for a majority of the race. At mile 10, I finally had to urinate as I had been holding it for six miles! Miles 10,11,and 12, were my slowest miles. I was fighting a toe cramp in my left foot, as well as pain in my left hip. Luckily, those pains went away and to my surprise, and I didn’t know this until I looked at the tracker later, my fastest mile was my last! Mile 13 was at a 12:51 pace!

Here are the official and unofficial results:


Distance: 13.27 miles

Duration: 2:57:09

Average Pace: 13:20



Official time:

First Name Last Name Age 10k Gun Time Net-Time Pace
Eric Van De Ven 54 1:18:46 3:03:50 02:56:38 13:29

Not a personal best, but considering I was 15 pounds heavier than last year, I was only 2 minutes slower. And, no pain except for a little soreness.

Also, using the run/walk interval method and the low carbohydrate diet, I felt fresh after the race.

While waiting for the wife to finish, I took a few pictures of the beach and surrounding areas.

Fort Lauderdale beach!

Fort Lauderdale beach!

More beach....

More beach….

In the instruction manual of our new Canon camera, it says not to look at the lens if you are taking a picture of a bright the sun!

In the instruction manual of our new Canon camera, it says not to look at the lens if you are taking a picture of a bright object…like the sun!

The Bahia Mar hotel..

The Bahia Mar hotel..

A cargo ship...that was probably at least a half a mile away. That zoom really does work!

A cargo ship…that was probably at least a half a mile away. That zoom really does work!

Wishful thinking!

Wishful thinking!

Almost there!

Almost there!


The finish line! I took this picture while running with the wife to the finish!

The best thing at the cold low fat chocolate milk!!!!!!

The best thing at the finish…ice cold low fat chocolate milk!!!!!!



Now that the race was over, what to do? We got an extended checkout, so, went up to the room, rehydrated, and packed. We called the bellman and they took our luggage downstairs and held it for us. Meanwhile, we went to the pool patio deck and had lunch. But first, drinks!! Now that the race was over, carbohydrate fever! A Mojito for me and a Bahama Mamma for the wife!

Mojito and a Bahama Mamma!

Mojito and a Bahama Mamma!

A quick burger and Mahi Mahi sandwich..time to enjoy the view!

Bacon cheeseburger.

Bacon cheeseburger.

Mahi Mahi sandwich!

Mahi Mahi sandwich!

Bye bye Lauderdale...... :(

Bye bye Lauderdale…… ūüė¶

This was a fantastic trip. No injuries and no drama..except for nearly missing the race! ūüėČ

We are already planning for the race next year and it may be a 2-night stay this time!

Next race up….Disney Wine and Dine 2015!




February 16, 2015 Posted by | Gluten-Free Foods and Diet, Health and Fitness, Home, Running | , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Break a leg…or two!

Last week, I went to get a full body scan and it showed that my body, to quote my friend¬†Colette, “Is that of a¬†cadaver”! Monday was the official reading of ¬†the report.

My doctor, Dr. Baylis, has been treating me for 15 years. He has performed six different surgeries on me, so, he no longer has to sugar-coat things. When he walked in, I could tell by the look on his face, what was to come next. Aside from that, I peeked at the written report on the computer, so I knew what was coming as well.

He informed me that I had a stress fracture on my left tibia and a severe stress fracture on my right tibia. Had I continued training and ran another race, I more than likely would have shattered my right tibia. This is of course, is very bad news, but, could have been worse. A shattered tibia would take roughly, at my age, two years to fully recover from.

The bad news about this type of fracture is that it takes longer to heal than a clean break. Right now, I have been ordered not to do anything aerobic for three months! Normally, this type of injury would require crutches, however, due to the fracture in the left leg, using crutches would put pressure on the left leg, so, it is a walking boot, rest, ice and nothing else for three months.

The more¬†serious¬†problem is what caused this. I suspect it has something to do with my running style and shoes. I have been doing a lot of reading and the shoes, even for a mild pronator, may be putting too much stress on my lower legs. The weight is also an issue and although I have lost 30 pounds, I still have another 30 pounds to go. I will be doing a bunch of research before I begin to train again in August. I will also seek out some more running professionals and may even resort to custom shoes. In the meantime, I’ll be returning to the gym for¬†cardiovascular¬†upper body and core exercises as well as continuing my diet.

I am still going to run the Disney Wine and Dine this November and if all goes well with that race, since I am already registered for it, my first marathon, The A1A Marathon in February 2014. The goal is still Boston in 2015 and if I can recover from this injury and then prevent it in the future, everything else should fall into place.

I would like to¬†take¬†this opportunity to thank the blog followers, comments, e mails and encouragement I have¬†received from the “internet family” and friends. Your words are¬†inspiring.

May 14, 2013 Posted by | Health and Fitness, Running | , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

5 more miles and the new, new, shoes!

Last week I got the new Sacouny Pro Guide 6 shoes and they were great. I decided to get another set a half a size bigger so I could add the Sorbothane inserts without trimming them. A stroke of genius if I say so myself!

Pro_guid_6 (1) (Custom)

On the left insert, I taped a piece of foam under the arch to protect the bone spur that I broke last year.
Pro_guid_6 (2) (Custom) Pro_guid_6 (4) (Custom)

The bottoms of the Pro Guide 6 shoes are much improved over their predecessor, the Pro Guide 5. Hopefully, this will translate to a longer lasting shoe.
Pro_guid_6 (5) (Custom)

And now, on to the run today.

After my morning ritual, it was time to run. I left the house at 6:15 and the goal was to run 5 miles in one hour or less.

Mile one: 12:15

Mile two: 12:06

Mile three: 12:01

Mile four:12:26

Mile five: 11:54

Total 5 miles in 1:00:42!

If you subtract the one minute warm up, that is under one hour!!!

I also ran the fastest mile at mile five and, had plenty “left in the tank”!

This was one of my better runs as there was virtually no pain with the exception of the first mile where there was minor pain in my calves, but that went away fairly quickly.

I had been concerned about the upcoming race as I haven’t really run the way I wanted to since the¬†shoulder¬†surgery. I am now confident that I can finish the A1A half marathon and do it in a good pace, hopefully, near 2:30. Speaking¬†of¬†the A1A half…….Look at this medal:


I think it weighs five pounds!!!

I can’t wait to add this one to the collection!

There are only two more training runs left next week and then race next Sunday!

Stay tuned……………………………

February 9, 2013 Posted by | Health and Fitness, Running | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

New pain…and some revoltin developments!

The last ten days have seen a¬†whole¬†host of changes. First, we can start with last Sunday. Since I have been running, I don’t seem to have the¬†capacity¬†to intake as much alcohol as I used to. Not to worry as having a child tends to curb the amounts, not frequency, that one may imbibe. It would appear, as¬†the¬†NFL season was winding down, my drinking has been winding up! ¬†Sunday night, was the final game for my team, the New England Patriots, as apparently, someone forgot to set the¬†alarm¬†and the entire team failed to show up for the game! This led to an abnormally high consumption¬†rate of¬†alcohol. This is not good for ones weight control!

After Saturdays 12 mile run, which even though it was performed in 55 degree, rainy weather, was still one of my better runs, time for a little treat!

The day started off with gluten-free Mickey Mouse waffles.


Dinner Sunday night was the customary “victory” dinner consisting of, a garlic infused, standing rib roast, slow cooked on the grill over a “package” of hickory wood. Real, creamer, garlic mashed¬†potatoes¬†and a salad.

100_7027 (Large) (Custom) 100_7028 (Custom) 100_7030 (Custom)

The above meal, although delicious, is a demonstration of the carbohydrate overdose that I have been on. Last week, I consumed, in no particular order, sloppy joes, on gluten-free buns, hot dogs, on gluten-free buns, spaghetti, with gluten-free pasta, and of course, dessert…gluten-free Blue Bell vanilla¬†ice cream! Even though I supposedly burned over 2500 calories on Saturdays run, a horrible present awaited me when I jumped on the scale. A number, 237.5 pounds, which is roughly 13 pounds heavier than what I weighed for the Wine and Dine 1/2 marathon!

As the A1A half marathon is only three weeks away, something needs to be done! Back to the tried and true Atkins diet. So far, in three days, I have lost six pounds. I need to keep this up in order to be under 220 pounds for the A1A half marathon.

On to other matters…………………………….

The bone spur in my left heel under my¬†Achilles¬†tendon, has been bothersome lately. I was looking for some sort of¬†relief¬†when I went with the wife to Sports Authority and she found some type of inserts. I tried them, and the stopped the pain in my heel, so I got a set¬†of¬†these: Airr Orthotic. They¬†seemed¬†great for walking around, unfortunately, they do not work for running, at least for me. ūüė¶

The shin splints and calf pain returned during last Saturdays run, to the point, that I could only run one mile. I decided to run again Sunday with the same result! Meanwhile, I was also in search of a different set of shoes. I was very excited to see that Saucany has come out with the new version of my trusty Pro Guide 5s, the Pro Guide 6! I also got three pairs of different Asics shoes.

Now, we can fast forward to today.

All of the shoes arrived Monday night! Once again, Zappos is the absolute best. I ordered everything Saturday night and they arrived Monday. You can’t beat that!

The three pairs of Asics, all suffer from the same issue, they are too narrow. It is too bad as one of the shoes, seemed to be a good fit. Time to try the new Sauconys! These shoes are an improvement in comfort and fit from their predecessor!! So much so, that the two pairs of Pro guide 5s, that have never been taken out of the box, got sent back today along with the other shoes!

As I had to pressure-clean and acid-wash all of the sidewalks, walkways, and driveway, we have well water for our sprinkler system and everything gets stained, plus, they were all dirty and the code official appears to be on a crusade as everyone got written up for it, I decided to postpone yesterdays run to today. A good move!

Although my calves were a little sore along with the rest of my legs, using the new shoes, I managed to run 3.54 miles in 44:47 at an average pace of 12:42 minutes a mile. This is the same pace as the 12 mile run two weeks ago. For whatever reason, I run slower for the lower mileage runs. The Tuesday run of 3.79 miles was at a 13:20 pace. That is almost 40 seconds per mile faster for the run today. Although there was a little pain in my legs, after the first 2 miles, it all went away. I am looking forward to this Saturdays 15 mile run!!!

More good news!!

For those that use My fitness Pal to track their food and fitness, this app now integrates with Endomondo, so, your runs are automatically inserted into your daily diary!

I have to work tomorrow so, the next run will be Saturday….15 miles and I see a “cold” front is on the way!!!

January 30, 2013 Posted by | Health and Fitness, Running | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

12 miles and I am on track again!

Yesterdays run went better than expected. First, we have to go back to Friday. Friday I did an inspection on a home in Boynton Beach. When I get to the door, the nanny greets me and the husband staggers down the stairs. He says, ” I am a Realtor and know the procedure, do what you want, my wife and I have food poising or the stomach flu”!¬†Against¬†my better¬†judgement ,I did the inspection. By the time I got to the master bedroom, the husband was under the covers, and the wife was curled up on the floor in the fetal position……with a bucket nearby!

I know all too well this feeling as it happened to us last year. It was the stomach flu and I spent the entire night on the bathroom floor in the same position as this lady. This was the night before our trip to Disney, and the wife had to make a stop on the roadside, as she became afflicted with this disease.

I finished the¬†inspection, came home and did the report, went to¬†physical¬†therapy and got Marshall from daycare. ¬†By this time, it is near dinner time and I didn’t take anything out to cook and the wife didn’t feel like¬†trekking¬†out to eat. So, we ordered from ¬†our favorite¬†Italian¬†restaurant, Bella Romas. I got chicken wings as that and the salads are all I can eat¬†from¬†there. We finished dinner, did the dishes, gave Marshall his bath, and relaxed on the couch. After about 45 minutes, I feel the unmistakable pain in my stomach,¬†which¬†indicates, something has gone horribly wrong.

I feared the worst….that I had contracted the disease from the couple in the home I inspected and had a weekend of laying on the bathroom floor ahead of me. This might be detrimental in my running effort! Fifteen minutes later, I was in the bathroom. Fortunately, I was not vomiting, just a lot of stool expulsion.

The plan was to go to bed around 9:00 pm and get up at 4:00 am to simulate the upcoming race. Things didn’t quite work out that way. I spent the next four hours going back and forth from the couch to the bathroom, finally ending this “dance” at 2:00 am. I fell asleep and woke up at 4:00 am, thanks to our trusty alarm, Samantha who likes to tread on Daddys bladder for 15 minutes before finally falling asleep on my chest.

The alarm goes off at 5:00 am…which was about 12 minutes after I fell asleep! Might as well get up! I have to say, even though I didn’t get much sleep, it was quality sleep. It appears I am finally over the night sweats from the surgery and my sleep pattern is¬†uninterrupted. I decided to try a cup of¬†coffee¬†instead of my¬†usual¬†shot of NoExplode. The NoExplode seems to bloat me to the¬†point¬†where it takes at least three hours for the bloat to go away. The bloating puts pressure on my lungs and I have trouble breathing¬†when¬†I run. I then get tired, which is what was happening in the two previous runs.

I had one cup of coffee and since milk bloats me and gives me wicked gas, I used the chocolate Boost and some sweetener. I had my usual two eliminations and now it was time to “dope up”. In order to prevent any accidental bowel movements, I take four Advil gel caps prior to running. This seems to bind me up and I was certain I would need¬†binding¬†today! I also take my glucosamine supplement as well as two gas pills to prevent any bloating. Time to load up the fuel belt. Three 10 oz bottles of Gatorade and three of water. One bag of sport beans. One quick note about the sport beans. The resealable bag is a great idea, however, just like every other resealable bag, they are a pain to open, especially with sweaty hands while you are walking. I cut the top of the bag open beneath the re-sealing strip and just folded it over, then put it in the storage pouch on my belt.

Finally, I was ready to run. The temperature was a balmy 64 degrees with the wind chill, real feel temperature was 60 degrees. Perfect running weather. As it was still dark out, I didn’t notice the gray clouds. One mile into the run, it started to rain. First a light drizzle, then a steady rain…which accompanied me the entire run!!

During the week, I¬†happened¬†to see a chart on Facebook from Saucany with running tips. One was to run promoting a mid foot strike. When I run, due to my injuries, every walk interval is spent¬†trying¬†to figure out a way to eliminate the pain from the previous run interval. Sometimes I have to run on the outsides of my feet to eliminate pain in my shins. Other times, I have to run “heel to toe” to prevent pain in my mid-foot. Today, I tried to concentrate on the mid-foot¬†strike¬†method of running.

I ran the first three miles in 37:43 and the third mile was my fastest with an 11:50 time. This translates to roughly a 12:30 minute pace. A little slow, but it is better to start slow and gradually get faster.

I finished 5 miles in 1:02:01 which is close to a 12 minute mile pace. I had no pain and was running pretty easily.

After 8 miles, my time was 1:39:29 which is pretty close to an even pace. My pace was around 12:26 for a majority of the run til this point.

Mile 9 was my slowest mile at 13:24. My run/walk interval app went haywire and probably is what caused this.

Mile 10 was done in 12:44 so I was getting back on track. The 10 mile time was 2:05:37 which is 15 minutes faster than my Tower of Terror finishing time. It was at this time, that my toes began to cramp. Also, my hands were pruned and I was completely soaked as I had been running in a steady downpour for two hours! The cold weather also seemed to be taking its toll as my hips began to hurt. I pressed on!

Miles 11 and 12 were completed a little slower than I would have liked at 13:12 and 13:07 respectively. I finished 12 miles in 2:31:56 with an average pace of 12:41 mile.

In recap, I had four miles in the 13 minute range, with 13:24 being the slowest. I had 7 miles in the 12 minute range with the slowest being 12:47 and the fastest being a 12:00 on mile 5.

I had one lap in the 11:00 minute (11:50 at mile three). I need more of those.

All of these numbers are believed to be¬†accurate¬†as I used the Endomondo app and I tested that app against the¬†wife’s¬†new Garmin 410 watch and the numbers were¬†identical.

This is the first long run since the surgery and it appears, I am getting my “wind” back as I wasn’t really tired. I was out of fuel, for obvious reasons, but other than that, a¬†successful¬†run.

This morning, I have a little soreness in my calves and hips. Nothing a little Advil can’t contain. The plan for next week is to run 5 miles Tuesday, Thursday, and Saturday. The following week will be 5, 5, and 14 miles on Saturday! I will be changing the run/walk interval from 45 seconds running to 1 minute running and 1 minute walking. I’ll have to see what the numbers come in for that run to determine my settings for the race.

The rest of the day will be making Mickey Mouse waffles for breakfast for the family, getting the standing rib roast and some red potatoes for dinner and watching the NFL conference championship games.

Next week will be the ramp up week and into heavy training for the A1A half marathon. Then, comes the training for the Wine and Dine half marathon,¬†which¬†will include some speed work and also venturing into running 20-plus miles as I prepare for next years Disney Marathon. At that point, hopefully, I’ll get the 26.2 sticker to go next to my 13.1 sticker!!!!

January 20, 2013 Posted by | Health and Fitness, Home, Running | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Back on the road……………….

Today was the first “official” training run for the A1A half marathon. Unfortunately, last night, I didn’t get any sleep and to make matters worse, the night sweats returned! This latest surgery is having some long-range effects and I am not happy with any of them! Well, at least the¬†shoulder¬†is getting much better. Although physical therapy is a¬†nuisance, it is working. When I move my shoulder, there is little pain and no grinding. I actually threw a football 15 yards yesterday with little pain! Meanwhile, I am still not allowed to do anything with my biceps. Tomorrow is the next doctors appointment and hopefully, he tells me I can start to use the biceps. The big reason I want to use the biceps is that my triceps are doing all of the work…and getting quite tired doing it!!

On to the run today. After my usual shower, I donned my water belt and took off. I have set my run/walk interval trainer to 45 seconds run, one minute walk. At this time, it is still too much as I struggled to finish 2 miles while maintaining a 12 minute mile pace. Tuesday runs suck!!!! Anyway, I have determined that I need to lose some weight as this recovery has added 10 pounds to my frame and running at 230 pounds seems to be preventing me from getting below the 12 minute pace. I may change my running days to Monday, Wednesday and Friday as it appears as though I am behind where I feel I need to be for this upcoming race. I also need to get back into the gym.

In future news………………………………..

The decision has been made to run this years Wine and Dine race in Disney this year. We are using our accumulated points on the Disney card and will be staying in a higher end resort…preferably one¬†with¬†a hot tub!! ¬†For 2014, ¬†I will run my first full marathon, January 2014!¬†We will run the Wine and Dine later in the year. And Ringing in the new year, 2015, I will be doing the “Goofy”. A Half Marathon on Saturday and the Full Marathon on Sunday. I will then expire!! ūüôā As long as our friend Jen does the Wine and¬†Dine, so will we. The wife and I just may do it because we enjoy that particular event at Disney, more than most other events.

It looks like I will be running tomorrow as I booked an inspection on a 5 million dollar home for¬†Thursday,¬†which¬†should take all day. Good money though……… ūüôā

January 15, 2013 Posted by | Health and Fitness, Running | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Training continues …. shoulder surgery next. :(

As this year comes to a close, it has been quite eventful! A little bit of everything. Running, injuries, and some good times!

I am having¬†shoulder¬†surgery Tuesday, so it looks like the training will be put on hold…for a little while anyway!

Since switching to the new shoes, there has been no pain in my knees over the last two runs. The first run, 10 miles, was a fairly “easy” run.

Day Distance Time W & D Time
Saturday 0.5 0:09:03
December 1, 2012 1 0:11:41 0:05:40
1.5 0:05:47
2 0:10:23 0:05:50
2.5 0:05:53
3 0:11:06 0:05:46
3.1 0:01:15
0:43:14 3.5 0:04:00
4 0:11:20 0:05:37
4.5 0:05:53
5 0:10:53 0:05:37
5.5 0:05:47
6 0:11:36 0:05:36
1:17:27 6.5 0:05:43
7 0:10:33 0:05:33
7.5 0:05:55
8 0:11:15 0:06:04
8.5 0:05:54
9 0:11:54 0:05:50
9.5 0:06:03
1:59:04 10 0:11:13 0:06:18
Totals: 10 1:51:54 2:53:56

The 1:51:04 time was a 7:10 improvement over my Wine and Dine pace.


This Saturday, I was trying to get a little speed work done so I increased the running interval on one lap in the first three miles to see if my 5K time would improve.

Day Distance Time W & D Time
Saturday 0.5 0:09:03
December 8, 2012 1 0:12:26 0:05:40
1.5 0:05:47
2 0:10:40 0:05:50
2.5 0:05:53
3 0:09:44 0:05:46
 32:52 (personal best)! 3.1 0:01:15
0:43:14 3.5 0:04:00
4 0:10:48 0:05:37
4.5 0:05:53
1:00:21 5 0:11:24 0:05:37
Difference +/- 0:05:19 6
Totals: 5 0:55:02 2:53:56 Pace:11:00

By running three additional “run” intervals, I was able to finish the five miles in 55 minutes and the 5K in just under 33 minutes, both, personal bests!

When I resume training, I will be changing my run/walk settings to 1:30 run/1:00 walk and gradually, work my way to a 2:00 run/1:00 walk pace. I think this will get me to the 2:30 time I am looking for at the A1A half marathon.

The goals for next year are to lose 22 pounds, which will get me under 200 pounds, for the first time in thirty years!!! I believe that will also increase my speed as well as make it easier to run with less pain. And by pain, I mean the occasional soreness in strange places that seems to come only from running! Also, to run my first marathon and to finish the 2013 Tower of Terror 10 mile race in under 2 hours and the 2013 Wine and Dine 1/2 Marathon in two hours.

As I will be out of action, the upcoming blog posts will be reviews of some of the products I use and “The Terrible Teeth” post will be revealed. For those that are a bit squeamish about dental work, you may want to avoid that one!

I would like to wish all of my followers a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!

Run Wild…………………………..Run Free!!!!

December 9, 2012 Posted by | Gluten-Free Foods and Diet, Health and Fitness, Home, Running | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Wine and Dine Results

I know it has been a couple of weeks since the race, but, here is the complete breakdown for everything that took place.

The first thing that happened was that the wifes work had¬†their¬†periodic inspections the week of the race! That meant that our planned leaving day of Thursday had to be scrapped and we left Friday morning. This also negated our plans to “enjoy” the wine and dine booths!! It also meant that everything else got¬†compressed¬†into nearly one day!

We left the house Friday around 9:00 am and got to Disney at nearly noon. We checked in and then spent the day at Epcot, enjoying the wine and dine festivities! We went to bed at 10:00 and slept fairly well….considering that Marshall was sick and as if that wasn’t bad enough, snoring like a freight train!!!


Saturday¬†morning. We got up early and drove over to the Expo at Wide World of Sports. We got all of our¬†packages¬†and I also got my¬†corral¬†placement fixed. I was in the “F” corral,¬†which¬†is the very, very, last placement changed to the “D” corral,¬†which¬†was better, but “C” would have been better! After checking in we took Marshall to his grandparents house and got back to the room at around 2:00 pm.

Time for the champions lunch, meat loaf and mashed potatoes!! I made this Thursday night and we heated it up in the microwave. Speaking of which, the “value”¬†resorts¬†at Disney lack certain things. One being a microwave, the other, a coffee machine! If Teala doesn’t get her coffee, she may not wake up! ūüôā We also brought our trusty Cuisinart frying pan,¬†which¬†came in handy for some grilled cheese¬†sandwiches¬†and breakfast!

4:00: Time for a nap…no nap possible! We now got all of our running gear in place, bibs,¬†water¬†belts, etc.

6:00: Time for the hot bath to loosen up these old and very cold bones!!! Also, time for a dose of NoXplode and Nitrix.

7:00 Time to get on the bus to Wide World of Sports.

7:25: We arrive at the staging area, which was the parking lot at Wide World of Sports. Did I mention it was cold?

9:00: Time to check in our bags. These bags carry all the essentials. Deodorant, a change of clothes, snacks, etc. After you tie the bags in a knot, the disappear and magically reappear at the end of the race!

10:00: Waiting to get the race started. Every 5 minutes, another bracket was started, wheelchair, Bracket, A, B, C, and finally D at 10:20.

Before I get into the race results, here is what it takes to run this race, at least for me:

  1. 4 Advil gelcaps
  2. 4 325 mg Vicodin
  3. 2 Publix gas pills
  4. 1 Boost
  5. Amphipod 63 oz water belt with three bottles of Gatorade and three of water.
  6. Two packs of Sport Beans

Using the water belt, I was able to avoid a majority of the traffic in the early going. I didn’t have to get any water until mile 7. The¬†Gatorade¬†lasted until Mile 12.

The¬†Vicodin¬†was needed as my foot still hurt and my knees were really painful. At the end, I’ll tell everyone why!

And now, on to the race!!!!

Day Distance Time Pace Average speed
Saturday 0.5 0:09:03 3.30
November 10, 2012 1 0:05:40 5.20
1.5 0:05:47 5.20
2 0:05:50 5.10
2.5 0:05:53 5.10
0:38:36 (Somehow, faster than the Tower of Terror time) 3.1 0:05:46 0:12:41 5.20
0:43:49 3.5 0:05:15 5.70
4 0:05:37 5.30
4.5 0:05:33 5.10
 At 5 miles, I was cruising, just my knees were hurting! 5 0:05:57 0:12:07 5.30
5.5 0:05:47 5.20
 1:17:27 Computer time 6 0:05:36 5.40
 1:18:25 Chip time 6.5 0:05:43
7 0:05:33
7.5 0:05:55
8 0:06:04
8.5 0:05:54
9 0:05:50
1:59:02 (15k chip time) 9.5 0:06:03
1:58:36 (15k computer  time) 10 0:06:18 0:11:52
10.5 0:06:08
11 0:05:23
11.5 0:05:51
12 0:06:06
12.5 0:06:14
13 0:06:04
2:40:40 13.1 0:01:24
13.5 0:05:00
 According to the run tracker, I actually ran 14 miles  14 0:06:41
 2:53:56 Run tracker time  14.1 0:06:01
 Chip time: 2:52:36
Totals: 13.1 2:53:56 0:13:11 5.09

Official race results

Age: 52 Gender: M

Distance HALF MAR
Clock Time 3:08:45
Chip Time 2:52:36
Overall Place 7497 / 11617
Gender Place 2958 / 3947
Division Place 195 / 274
Age Grade 39.5%
5K 38:36
10K 1:18:25
15K 1:59:02

By the end of this race, and the numbers bear this out as my slowest miles were the first mile, due to traffic¬†which¬†according to Endomondo was a 15:51 time, to the last mile¬†which¬†was a 14:49 time, due to exhaustion, I was out of fuel. When I crossed the finish line, I was looking for a bottle of water and a place to fall down. My knees hurt to the point that I couldn’t walk. After the race, I sat down, rested a bit, and then, met Teala and some of our¬†friends¬†from Kentucky that ran the race, and¬†proceeded¬†to drink and eat our way around Epcot, until 4:00 am!! I guess I wasn’t that tired.

I was disappointed as I thought I would be able to finish this race near the speed of the Tower of Terror race,¬†which¬†although it was 3.1 miles shorter, my training had shown I had made a big improvement in my time. I guess I will have to wait for the next race to get under 2 and a half hours. ūüė¶

The following morning as I was putting my shoes away, I noticed that they were completely worn out!

Here are the old shoes:

By comparison, the new shoes:

This may have accounted for the painful knees!! As I have started training for the next race, the A1A 1/2¬†Marathon¬†in February, I switched to the new shoes and the pain went away. I have also switched running apps to Endomondo, as it appears to be the most accurate, and Sports Tracker,¬†which¬†gives me my updates as to speed and pace. Since this race, I have made two runs, 4 and 6 miles respectively, and the pace is steady at 12:08 pace per mile. I plan on getting that down to 11:30 by the time February rolls around. That pace should get me near the 2 hour, 30 minute goal. By this time next year, I plan on running the 2013 Wine and Dine in 2 hours………………or less!!

Stay tuned……………………………………………………..

November 26, 2012 Posted by | Health and Fitness, Home, Running | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 3 Comments

A quick six miles……………………

Just a quick six-mile run!

Only two more training sessions to go before the race. I am happy to report that everything went flawlessly! No hardware/software glitches and only a little pain in my right knee.

In the upcoming posts, I will detail everything that it takes in order for a 52-year-old individual, with multiple injuries/surgeries, to run and actually finish, hopefully, in the top half of my age group, at the upcoming Wine and Dine half marathon.

Stay tuned!


Todays training results:

Day Distance Time Pace Average speed
Saturday 0.5 0:06:25 4.70
November 3, 2012 1 0:05:24 5.60
1.5 0:04:48 6.20
2 0:05:34 5.40
2.5 0:05:38 5.30
3 0:05:04 0:10:58 5.90
0:38:23 time 3.5 0:05:30 5.40
4 0:05:32 5.40
4.5 0:05:14 5.70
5 0:05:26 0:10:55 5.50
5.5 0:05:17 5.70
 Personal best lap: 6 0:04:26 6.70
Totals: 6 1:04:18 0:10:43 5.63
 Personal best pace of 10:43

November 3, 2012 Posted by | Health and Fitness, Running | , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

%d bloggers like this: