Monthly Archives: April 2009

Boston Marathon

I never thought I’d be standing here:

Hopkinton?  That didn’t seem possible.

I started training for Boston in late December…and felt good all through January as I improved my speed, endurance, and ability to run hills.  But in mid-February I injured my back and couldn’t walk.  Even three s-l-o-w steps were painful.  More than three were impossible.

Friends asked, “How’s your training going?” and I’d shake my head.  “Training?  I can’t even walk!”

I tried massage.  Heat.  Cold.  Rest.  Nothing helped.  Instead of getting better, my back got worse.

Finally, after weeks of being unable to walk, I got lucky.  A gifted physical therapist identified the problem.  (My SI joint.  Who knew I had an SI joint?)  He yanked on my leg and straightened the SI joint, then showed me what I had to do to keep it in proper alignment.

He got me walking again.

But by then Boston was just five weeks away.

No one can train for Boston in five weeks. I knew that. But I went for a run anyway.

Just an easy jog on a nicely-cushioned dirt trail.  My back didn’t complain.

So I did it again the next day.  Still no complaints from the back.

Hmmmm…
…maybe I could run.

My physical therapist told me I could train, if I was willing to quit at the first sign of pain.  You bet! I said.  But I’d lost six weeks.  So…at a time when other Boston-bound runners were tapering, I had to start running, building up from a base of zero. 

I went from nothing to 5K in a week…then to a half-marathon 2 weeks later…and decided I’d give Boston a shot.

So here I am at the start line:

As you can see, I’ve got a camera in my hand.  I don’t want to miss a thing!  So for the next 26.2 miles I’ll be taking pictures as I run.  (Yes, I take photos as I run.  I don’t stop or slow down.  After all, I;m in a race!) 

The following link will give you a first-person experience of my 2009 Boston Marathon:

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Great Bay Half Marathon

(c) 2010 by Ken Skier.   All rights reserved.  
 

Early in February I suffered a back injury.   For more than a month, I could only take a step or two–then had to stop because of the pain.   It took a lo-o-ng time to hobble to the kitchen, or the bathroom.   I saw my phystical therapist two or three times a week…but other than that, I never set foot outside.
 
Three weeks ago I was finally able to walk…so I put on my running shoes and went outside.   Could I run?   I didn’t even try.   My physical therapist was very clear about that.   No running!   But he said an easy jog would be okay.
 
I managed a third of a mile.
 
(I know.   That’s not very far.   But for me it was fantastic!)
 
Over the last three weeks I built up my distance to six miles.   So today is a big test for me.   If I can run 13.1 miles and feel okay afterwards, then I will enter the Boston Marathon.   (I have a number for Boston…but Marathon Monday is just two weeks away. )   It’s a dumb, dumb idea…but I have the number.   Is it possible?
 
I’ll find out today.   If I can’t finish this Half, or if I’m limping afterwards, then Boston is out of the question.   But maybe I can reach the finish line…
 
So my goal today is not a particular time. I just want to finish, without limping.   I’m carrying a small camera, so you can join me as I try to run the 2009 Great Bay Half Marathon. 



Two or three minutes into the race...

(I took this photo, and the others below, while running.)  



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All right!   Let’s get to the good stuff–an HD video that gives you a first-person experience of running this race.   Go ahead!   Click the ‘Play’ button below…
 

 

Were you at this race–and if so, what did you like best about it?   What could be improved?
 

(If you weren’t there, I hope these photos and HD video gave you a taste of the race…and I hope I’ll see you at a race next week.)

 

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