Friday, August 31, 2012

The Secret Race by Tyler Hamilton

 I have been staying away from discussions of Lance Armstrong these days. Like talking abut politics, "Lance talk" is very polarizing. He's either a massive cheater and liar or the subject of an overblown witch hunt and has never failed a test...people take sides. I have my own views that have been formed over many years of following professional cycling, from the days before Greg Lemonds victories in the Tour de France when us fans got our news about international races from a slick and beautifully photographed magazine called Winning Cycling Illustrated.

My son Andrew with Greg Lemond in 1999
Goodales  in Nashua.
I followed Greg Lemond as well as a teenaged triathlete named Lance Armstrong. There was nothing more thrilling then getting my friends and family all excited to watch Greg Lemond pull the upset over Laurent Fignon and win the final time trial and comeback victory in the 1989 Tour de France. I followed as Lance made a remarkable recovery from cancer and won his first Tour and many more, and was one of the first people to get a Livestrong bracelet. I watched his Tour victories with all the excitement and enthusiasm one could muster, but I also started hearing "more" about the "real" Lance and while he was a good cyclist, he seemed to not be a very nice person. As I learned more about the incredible rides of the professional cyclists, I also sadly realized that most of them were using illegal drugs to aid their performances.

It was gut wrenching when Floyd Landis lost his Tour victory after being caught using a testosterone patch, and then Tyler Hamilton was caught (and it wasn't due to his unborn twin), as well as many other popular European riders. It seemed like they all were tainted, well, all but Lance. I stopped watching the Tour and cycling events two years ago, just like I stopped watching the Red Sox. I want to watch a clean  sport without overpaid and overly worshiped players like the Sox or to watch a sport that was in disarray like cycling.

The Science of Sport blog has an excellent post on the many sides of the Lance Armstrong controversy. By not fighting the charges against him, I am in the camp that Lance figures this is the easiest and most pain free route to continue his denials without letting the public hear the charges and admissions of his Postal teammates.

Today I read an interesting article in Outside magazine by Mike Anderson, a close confident of Lance Armstrong for two years, before Lance went "Postal" on him and like others who crossed paths with Lance, he got a full vengeful and vindictive payback from Armstrong. This is more evidence of Lance's bullying type of behavior (or could it just be a disgruntled former employee?).

The article also mentions a book by Tyler Hamilton called The Secret Race: Inside the Hidden World of the Tour de France: Doping, Cover-ups, and Winning at All Costs that will come out in a few days. I look forward to reading this one. Here is a Cycling New review and a Sports Illustrated article on the book.

"Lance worked the system ... Lance was the system," according to Tyler Hamilton.

 News of Lance will continue to polarize people, but the news keeps getting worse for Mr. Armstrong. My opinion is that Lance needs to come clean. I also don't think you can really take the victories away. There is no one to give them to: however, there should be a pretty big asterisk next to them. I just hope I don't find out one day that all the great running stars of today are just as juiced.

Update: I finished reading the book and it was a good read. There is no denying that Tyler is coming clean with the extensive details and admissions. As he repeatedly says, "The truth shall make you free." Doping sounds like a system wide epidemic in the professional (and hints of it even in the amateur circles) cycling peleton. Lance is tied down to his lies and has exerted a lot of control over the whole issue within the cycling ranks. Unfortunately due to the fact that is is not a very nice guy, it seems as though his grip is slowly being eroded and eliminated, as fellow teammates and cyclists start coming clean. It is troubling to read how easy it was for cyclists to dope. It was easy for them, because if they didn't they would have no career and it was easy enough for them to find, use, and discover the newest ways to cheat the system in order to keep up.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Over 50 and my legs are trashed

I had another post half-done a couple of days ago, but I will save it for another time and defer to a sadly interesting  and current letsrun thread. The thread is called Nearing 50 and my legs are trashed. I just altered the title a bit for this post. All I have to say to my younger running friends is to read this and start planning for the day when your legs lose their snap and you can't run like you are used to and would like to. It sounds like something a lot of long term runners are dealing with, if they don't quit all together,  and is a complete suprise to me. I knew I would get slower as I got older, and I knew the surgery and added weight gain would slow things down further for awhile, but I was not ready to never feel that snap in my legs again, for the legs to constantly feel heavy and to lack any energy, and to feel no ability to pick up the pace or even to do a short sprint when I am running. This is all new and uncalled for! I am complaining a bit, but I guess I am also somewhat fascinated, like looking at an accident on a highway, at what happens as long-time runners age. I wouldn't call it burn-out as runners on that thread desire to get their running back, just like me. When you are younger, you have no clue that this will someday happen.

I had a good week for reaching goals last week. This is my best mileage since my hip surgery last summer. I think it was more about reaching a goal and ended up being more a mental exercise to keep pushing to get the miles in. I did want to get a 50 mile week in this summer and that is not going to happen.

Monday: 3 miles Mine Falls Trail Race
Tuesday: cycled 26 miles group ride
Wednesday: 8 miles
Thursday: 8 miles
Friday: 8 miles
Saturday: 8 miles
Sunday: 8 miles
Weeks total: 43 miles running

While I am happy I stuck with my goal of running 8 miles each of those last 5 days, it was not pretty. My running is labored and at times seems more like a shuffle. My legs are dead, toast, trashed or whatever you want to call it. The desire is still there, but once I start running my legs are tight and I can't move them without feeling like an 80 year old man. I am running my 8 milers 6-18 minutes slower than what I would consider an average training time from just 2 years ago. I am still dealing with hip alignment and my foot throwing my stride off, but the dead legs is something else. There is no spark. When I saw that letsrun thread, I realized those guys are just like me. We have lost that ability we used to take for granted. I do hope to get it back, but the aging process stinks! I have tried a lot of things mentioned by various runners in the thread, but my legs don't want to move quickly and I am gutted and exhausted after each slow amble on my training route. But, I haven't given up yet. Someday these old legs will feel refreshed. It just ain't going to be easy, I guess!

I am still playing around with the insoles. I ran my fastest 5k of the Mine Falls Trail series on Monday this year, but it is still minutes slower than what I was doing two years ago. I will finish my insoles post some day when I have given the insoles more time to gauge their success.

Saturday, August 25, 2012

Running with the Kenyans

Running with the Kenyans: Passion, Adventure, and the Secrets of the Fastest People on Earth by Adharanand Finn is an exceptional book worth reading if you are a fan of running and wanting to know what it would be like to train with the Kenyans in Rift Valley of Kenya with the greatest distance runners in the world. It is a story of an ordinary Englishman who travel to Kenya in hopes of discovering what is the secret to the international success of the Kenyan distance runners. Finn also wants to see if he can improve on his own running by running with the Kenyans. The search involves looking into the usual suspects of what creates the great Kenyan distance success. Is it...
the tough active childhood, the barefoot running, the altitude, the diet, the role models, the simple approach to training, the running camps, the focus and dedication, the desire to succeed, to change their lives, the expectation that they can win, the mental toughness, the lack of alternatives, the abundance of trails to train on, the time spent resting, the running to school, the all pervasive running culture, the reverence for running. (page 238)
Or is there some super running gene that make great Kenyan runners so abundant. Or can it be that they simply want it more than athletes from other countries? Finn takes his family to the great running town of Iten, Kenya to discover these truths. He also travels to nearby Eldorat. These are the two most well-known places that Kenyan athletes congregate to in order to pursue their dreams. There is certainly a hunger for success that is different than the approach of most runners in the western cultures. We run because it makes us feel good. We search for the runner's high. One of the characters that Finn meets is a runner named Godfrey who tells about when he ran four miles to school each day.
"I noticed I felt better in my body during the day," he says. "I was able to concentrate much better. When I didn't run, I felt tired and lethargic all day." (page 48)

Godfrey admits that Finn is the first person he has told of this discovery and that he only thought of it at the moment. As a teacher, I find it strange that the Kenyans do what is good for them naturally without thought of the benefits, and here in America where we know the importance of daily exercise, we limit how much our children do. When I was in Kenya last summer, I did not see Kenyan children running to school, but I saw them walking all the time and I saw massive amounts of Kenyan adults making long walks to get where they needed to be. Finn settles into life in Iten and starts his own running group with a ragtag group of aspiring runners including a former 2nd place finisher of the Boston and New York City Marathons, Chrisopher Cheboiboch, who is now more busy handling the daily affairs of a school he set up then doing the necessary training to become a champion runner again. This is part of the ethos of being a Kenyan runner. One of the more informative sections of the book describes the Kenyan idea of teamwork. Finn writes: Unlike athletes from other parts of the world, such as the Jamaican Usain Bolt, Kenyan runners rarely seek out the limelight. Even when the win gold medals they always bring their teammates with them on their lap of honor. He talks with author and runner Toby Tanser while in Kenya who tells him about a Kenyan concept called harambee.
"Very few of the Kenyan champions come from a sheltered family unit. Instead they are brought up as part of the wider community of a village, almost like pieces of a bicycle chain. They soon learn about harambee. Harambee is a Kenyan tradition, in which a whole community will come together to help itself. It literally means "all pull together" and is the official motto of Kenya. When a Kenyan wins a medal, or a large sum of money, he reflects on the journey that took him to that moment, and he realizes perhaps better than we do, that no person achieves without the help and support of those around him." (page 140)

 It sounds like a worthwhile tradition, this harambee, but I am not sure it will fly in the political self-interested world that seems to be happening in 2012 America!

Finn on the run with the Kenyans.
Other photos here.

 Part of the fun of this book is that while in Iten, Finn meets and spends time with some of the greatest runners in the world today. I was reading this book during the London Olympics and many of the familiar names popped up in the Olympic races. Mary Keitany, Emmanual Mutai, David Rudisha, Nixon Chepseba, and others. If you pay attention to one of Finn's group training runs he describes going for a 20+ mile training run in which he is given a 10 minute head start on the men runners and runs with the ladies.
At about the tenth mile the men come past us. First the sound of rushing feet, then they go by, their strides strong, their shoulders leaning forward, little puffs of dust kicked up by their feet. One by one they go. At the front is Emmanual Mutai and an Ugandan athlete named Stephen Kiprotich, who came in sixth at the recent World Cross-Country championships. The others are not far behind. (page 173)
Yeah, that Stephan Kiprotich, the guy who was the unexpected winner of the 2012 London Olympic Marathon. Unfortunately, while reading this book during the Olympics, it was interesting to note that the Kenyan runners where not as successful as anticipated in the games and that caused great consternation in Kenya. The head Kenyan Coach Julius Kirwa has asked the government to ban foreigners from training in Kenya and learning "Kenya's Training Tactics" He cited those such as Mo Farah, Stephen Kiprotich and Taoufik Makhloufi, who've used training in Kenya to win medals. Other notable people who should be familiar to runners turn up in the book, Italian running coach Renato Canova, Brother Colm of the St. Patrick's School in Iten, and a young American runner named Anders who is spending time in Iten. Anders' mother also shows up, Joan Benoit-Samuelson. The three, while traveling by car, are stopped by a policeman. Finn calls the great Olympic champion "elderly" for some reason, but Joan's renown as an Olympic runners lets the three off the hook. The fun in the book is meeting the various characters and getting a taste of training in this place that is a runner's haven. Finn paints compelling portraits of the Kenyans he meets and the landscape of the region. As someone who has spent some time in Kenya, the portrayals seem accurate. I have a love of the Kenyan land and people and if I ever have a chance to return, I would love to spend some time in the Iten to get a taste of this runner's paradise.
Amid the chaos and poverty, where people struggle to make enough moeny to buy even the simplest things such as bread and water, here are some of the world's best athletes doing drills, back and forth, along the side of the road. (page 45)
Is there an absolute secret to the Kenyan's success? Who knows? Running with the Kenyans: Passion, Adventure, and the Secrets of the Fastest People on Earth will, though give you a fabulous window into the culture of Kenyan athletics. It is a fantastic read and a book I would put on my list of favorite running books. You want to know what happens to the athletes in the story as well as to Finn and his team when they complete their goal marathon at the end of the story.

Here is Adharanard Finn's blog for Running with the Kenyans.

British club runner Adharanand Finn moved to Kenya with his family to discover the secret behind the phenomenal success of Kenyan runners. He took a camera with him, and here he talks about his experiences and we see what life was like, as he discusses his book Running with the Kenyans.

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Race Video of 2012 Falmouth Road Race

Race video of the Falmouth Road Race begins at the 15 minute mark. There is some great race video here of the leaders and of course the beautiful Falmouth course.


Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Vacation week

I did very little running last week as I was on vacation in Maine. The week did produce my lifetime personal worst at the 5k distance. I also did a lot of experimenting and so I have some new goals in mind.

Monday: 3 miles (Mine Falls Trail Race)
Tuesday: 25 mile cycling with group
Wed. 0 miles
Thurs. 0 miles
Friday 0 miles
Saturday 3 hilly miles along the Maine shoreline
Sunday 0 miles

Yesterday Monday (3 miles Mine Falls Trail Race)

I wore a newer model of  an insole that I tried out a few years ago during Monday's 5k. This insole felt good standing around in and I only used it for a few hours the previous day. It was my first run using them and I felt it. I was using different hip muscles which fatigued quickly and I felt like I was running in slow motion. I ran over two minutes slower than the two preceding weeks. I talked with the founder of the insole company on the phone the next day for awhile and wore the insoles the rest of the week, but while my feet felt supported, I found my walking stride was off and uncomfortable. So you don't have to look it up, I ran an embarrassing time (for me) of 25:23.

I also worked on some new hip stretches this week and got really intense with my foam roller. Rather than just a few slow passes up my quads. I did 20 passes on the front of my quads, 20 on each side, 20 on the IT band, and another 20 at the top of the hip. I also did the other muscles of the legs, but it is my quads that are the tightest.

When in Maine....Lobster!
On the way home from Maine, I remembered another insole I used a few years ago and remembered I still had a pair laying around. I put them on after returning from Maine Sunday night and everything felt right with my world for a change. I went out for a late night walk-run to see how they felt. Now whether it was just a good day (after hours in the car-I doubt it) or that I it might be these insoles that work for me, I don't know. I did the final trail race tonight and ran over 2 1/2 minutes faster than I did using the other insoles and my legs felt more balanced than they have in a while. I also set my PR for the course this year (under 23 minutes-and exactly 3 minutes slower than 2 years ago right before I stopped running with my bad hip) by maybe 20 seconds and this after a week of limited running and excessive eating! I will talk about both insoles at another time after more testing.

How  I feel when running: imbalanced and muscles of stone:
need to do more foam rolling!

I am done trying to race for now and have decided I need to work on kettlebells and the core more. I was real happy that this book showed up yesterday: Anatomy for Runners: Unlocking Your Athletic Potential for Health, Speed, and Injury Prevention by Jay Dichary. After looking through the book for over an hour last night, I think it is fantastic! It delves into a lot of things I have looked at and applies them to running at a much higher level than any other book I have seen. The book is written with humor and explains things in depth while going beyond what the typical running book advocates. I am going to use it as a template for strengthening up my imbalances and weaknesses. If you are working on building up your form, I would highly recommend taking a peek at this book. Jay Dichary is the director of the SPEED Performance Clinic at the University of Virginia.

Monday, August 20, 2012

On Running Shoes

Back in 2008, I wrote a post, A New Type of Running Shoe: Glide'n Lock about an innovative idea for a running shoe based on a system called the Glide'n Lock running system. Like a lot of new and creative ideas, I thought it might disappear or die-off due to lack of interest, financing, or simply that it just might not work. It seems that this glide'n lock idea has persisted and that the shoe is not being sold world-wide under the name of On Running Shoes.

It seems like On Running Shoes sponsors a lot of triathletes as opposed to runners. If you watched the London Olympic men's' triathlon maybe you were blown away by the speeds of the top 3 finishers (first and third were the Brownlee brothers from England). Lurking in the background behind the top three were a couple of other runners trying to run themselves onto the Olympic podium. The eventual fourth place finisher, David Hauss from France, ran the 10k portion of the race in a time of 29:53 wearing a pair of On shoes. There are a lot of other sponsored triathletes, probably the most interesting to me is that one of the big-four triathletes from the 1980s, Scott Molina, says he is back running and enjoying the shoes. The only pure runner mentioned is marathoner Tegla Loroupe, the two time New York City Marathon champion.

It will be interesting hearing reports on how this shoe works for runners as it uses an unique technology on the sole. There is a lot of information on their website for those who are interested.

Monday, August 13, 2012

2012 Falmouth Road Race and Falmouth Mile Videos

This year I got to watch the Falmouth Road Race for the first time ever after running it over 25 times. I decided to cheer on the runners where Surf Drive and the bike path cross, three something miles into the race. I was not ready for how dizzy you can feel watching all the runners go by. I shot video of all the competitors until my battery died. If you ran the race, you may be in here. It was fun to watch, but next year I hope that I am back to racing again.

Here are the first few wheelchair competitors:

The leaders and the first wave of runners (article on race):

Here is the wheelchair division of the Falmouth Mile:

Here is the men's division of the Falmouth Mile:

I videotaped the women's mile, but the finish was very fuzzy, so I did not put it up on youtube. If some one wants to see it let me know.

Other Falmouth Road Race Posts

The week that ended with an Olympic Marathon and the Falmouth Road Race

Got up early to watch the Men's Olympic Marathon and then headed out to watch the Falmouth Road Race.     Meb Keflezighi ran an inspired race to finish fourth in London.

Never count Meb out like the Olympic organizers did at the start of the marathon.

One thing that upset Meb was being snubbed in the introductions before the race. Ten athletes stood in front of the rest of the marathon field and were introduced to the crowd and world-wide televison audience. The ten athletes were: Wilson Kipsang of Kenya, Ayele Abshero of Ethiopia,  Arata Fujiwara of Japan, Getu Feleke of Ethiopia,Scott Overall of Britain, Abel Kirui of Kenya, Ryan Hall of the USA, Marilson Gomes Dos Santos of Brazil, Rachid Kisri of Morocco and, surprisingly, the little-credentialed Stephen Kiprotich of Uganda, who would go on to win.Missing from the mix, Meb Keflzighi, the only Olympic medallist in the field and the US Olympic Trials Champion. The snub riled Meb after the race. "I was a little upset on how the introduction went. To be an Olympic medallist which none of those 109 people that started the race did not have and to be the New York City Marathon champion. ... I was very upset. Shame on (the) IAAF. ... None of those guys had what I had and to be not introduced like that definitely hurt," he said.

Last week:
Monday: 5 miles (3 miles Mine Falls Trail 5k- 4 seconds slower than the previous week)
Tuesday: 23 miles biking ( 20 miles on a group ride-lots of fun)
Wednesday 8 miles ran in Skechers GoRuns for the first time since February
Thursday 8 miles ran in Altra Provision for the first time since February
Friday 8 miles back to running in the Hoka One One Bondi B-my hip felt better with the more flexible shoes, but I need to transition slowly
Saturday 4 miles at Falmouth
Sunday 4 miles kickbiking to and from 3 mile mark of the Falmouth Road Race
Total 33 miles running- good week-but slow- the three 8 milers in a row is a good sign

One exercise I am getting back to that I have lagged off on is the BOSU Squat. I see that it was also part of Tyson Gay's recovery from labral tear surgery, too. He mentions it helps his stabilizer muscles that he often doesn't work. I hears some little pops and stuff in my hip when I do these. I wonder if it is the the little muscles activating and moving for a change as I try to balance. I do feel better after doing these squats rather than just regular squatting.

BOSU Squat
  • Stand on flat side of BOSU with feet shoulder-width apart and arms extended forward
  • Squat until legs are bent 90 degrees
  • Drive up to start position; repeat for specified reps
Sets/Reps: 3x15
Coaching Points: Keep eyes focused straight ahead // Fire glutes to explode up from squat
Tyson Gay: “The glute muscles need to be strong for sprinting, and doing the BOSU Squat really fires the glutes up. It also helps me work the stabilizer muscles to strengthen those smaller areas that don’t get worked when I’m doing machine exercises.”

Thursday, August 9, 2012

1982 Falmouth Road Race

1982 was the 10th running of the Falmouth Road Race. Alberto Salazar and Joan Benoit-Samuelson were the two winners. The official race results say the temperature was 77 degrees with 70% humidity. There were 4500 official runners and 1500 unofficial runners.

Alberto Salazar in the lead approaching 6 miles.
6 miles in, the race leaders pass the Hoyts. #6 is Mike Musoyki who would finish 4th,
 behind him is 2nd place finisher Craig Virgin, and 3rd place finisher Rod Dixon is behind Craig.
5th place finisher Marc Curp

There used to be a video of the 1982 Falmouth Road Race online, but it seems to be missing now. Maybe I can get that uploaded here. Here it is:

Race story on the 2012 Falmouth Road Race:
FALMOUTH - By the time he reached a little upgrade in the woody stretch of roadway leaving Woods Hole, Alberto Salazar had taken the lead in the 10th Falmouth Road Race and, by the time he came out of those woods, the race, for all practical purposes, was history.
This was simply one more Salazar jewel to savor in a year that has seen him finish second in the world cross-country championships, run to a stunning record in a hot Boston Marathon and become the first since the late Steve Prefontaine to hold American track records for both 5000 (13:11.93) and 10,000meters (27:25.61).
Racing away from Michael Musyoki, 1980 Falmouth winner Rod Dixon and 1979 winner Craig Virgin, the resolute and gifted Salazar ran alone for the final four miles of the 7.1-mile race to finish in a record 31:53.3. Virgin (32:12) outkicked Dixon (32:16) and Musyoki (32:17) in the furiously competitive battle for second. 
On the eve of the race, Salazar had slight doubts about even lining to defend his Falmouth victory of last year in the record time of 31:55.6. "I picked up a slight stomach bug," he said, "and if it didn't get better, it would have seriously hindered my running. I just picked it up two days ago." But he called a doctor Saturday, got a prescription, and was just fine yesterday. 
Equally impressive on a morning when temperatures soared into the high and humid 70s after a relatively cool week was defending women's champion Joan Benoit's smashing 36:33.7, which leveled Grete Waitz' two-year-old record of 37:12.5. "When we found out Grete wasn't coming (due to a stress fracture)," said Benoit's coach, Bob Sevene, "she (Joan) said, I'll just have to go for the record.' "
After Keith Brantley of the University of Florida carried the lead through the first mile in 4:23 (only to wilt into a 24th-place finish), the race quickly evolved into the expected duel among Salazar, Virgin, Dixon and Musyoki. They went through two miles in an unofficial 9:02 and through three in 13:36. And then, see you later, Alberto.
"I was surprised I was able to break away as soon as I did," said Salazar. "Once the race started, I just didn't want to let anybody pull away from me. I just kept an even pace. I started to get a side stitch after about 4 1/2 miles; from there to six miles, I slacked off. I was a little worried about Musyoki or someone moving up. That's why I kept looking back. 
"I was never really that psyched to go out and break a record. I was surprised when I did. The big difference was mental. Last year I had something to prove. I'd had a year full of injuries. Falmouth was my first big race coming back. This year, I'd already set a world record in the marathon (New York) and American records for 5000 and 10,000 meters.
"I was surprised they let me get away. If they want to do this every year, it's fine with me. I used to try and stay up with the leaders as long as I could before I finally won this. As good as they were, they were making a mistake. I read where Dixon said he felt he could catch me in the last mile and a half. There's no way he can if I have 20 seconds on him. You've got to stay with the guy. 
"There's always a chance you can lose. I lost in Europe (in his two American record runs) in the last 400 meters. Nobody pulled away from me. I feel I'm as strong as anyone in the world. It's just my lack of a finishing kick. But all these guys were hanging on me. If I improve another 15 seconds and run a 27:10, they're not going to be there. It felt very easy today. If I had to rate it on a scale of 10, last year was a nine and this year was a seven." Would anyone like to predict what he'd have done to the other runners had he run a nine? 
That's just Salazar. He picks and chooses he races. As Dixon said, "That's his second road race (the other being Boston) since February. It's my 32d. If I were obsessed about winning this race, I would take eight weeks off. I didn't run his race today. I ran my race - in my mind, the best possible race I could run."
Virgin thought it had come down to him and Musyoki for second. "We were battling it out," said Virgin. "I thought we had dumped Rod. I heard a noise behind me and I said, Oh boy.' All of a sudden, Dixon goes right by us. That's when I reacted.defensively . 
"I found out last week at Maggie Valley (a 22:56.9 win in a 5- mile race that included Dixon and Musyoki) I had a kick. Confidence breeds confidence. I don't have a lot of confidence because I don't have the races. I was impressed by Alberto's leg speed. That's the thing that months of training builds up. 
"He was smart to come back from Europe a month ago. If he had just come back a week ago, he'd have been more vulnerable. I feel the same way he did in the 1980 Olympic trials when he finished third and he'd had only a couple of months of training after an injury. He set an example for me. He struggled. He came back. Everybody in the top five here has had a year of injuries at some time." Virgin, himself, is coming off a kidney ailment suffered at the end of March 
"For a guy who doesn't have any speed," Virgin added, "Alberto has made a real contribution to American distance running. I said in 1979 we were behind the Europeans. He's made great strides. He's the pace setter. I'm happy. Today, I was the best runner except for Alberto. It's a hard course and if we had caught Alberto, his ship would have been sunk. I had said I wouldn't be surprised if three or four people were coming over that final hill together. It was that way. Except for Alberto." 
Virgin also questioned the security of Falmouth's rating as America's No. 1 road race, despite its $32,000 budget for invited runners. "My feeling is that Falmouth has lost some of its depth," he said. "A race is just like a runner. You have to get better every year. You can't survive just on tradition. Some of the guys just didn't come back because of the way they were treated. They (at Falmouth) have got to make a move within the running world to keep pace." 
Falmouth was born out of the fantasy of a bartender named Tommy Leonard and it was first staged exactly nine years ago yesterday. Whatever its future, Falmouth 1982 will be a part of road racing history. For nobody was about to overhaul Alberto Salazar in his run to a record finish on a picture-postcard Cape Cod morning.

3rd place Rod Dixon
2nd place Craig Virgin
4th place Mike Musoyki

The legs of champions

Marc Curp, Mike Musoyki, and Rod Dixon
5th place finisher Jaqueline Gareau
Bill Rodgers-not in results
Dave McGillivray- who is the new race director of
the Falmouth Road Race

Bill Rogers and Johnny Kelley
My name is missing in the results, but my training log
says I finished about 250th with a time of 41:10.
Not bad as I had broken bones in my ankle in April of
that year.

Here are some pictures sent to me by Louise Goldberg, daughter of my high school  cross-country coach at The Stony Brook School on Long Island. Mr. Goldberg took took these from the Nobska Lighthouse hill. I recall seeing him there as I went running by.

Can anyone identify any of the other runners?

Here are the top results (click to expand)

Here are the top women.

Other Falmouth Road Race Posts

Monday, August 6, 2012

The guys you're trying to beat

What a great week for running with the Olympics on television for some motivation. The men's 10000 meter race is so far the best race of the Olympics! I would have liked to see Tyson Gay medal in the Olympics, but he just fell short. He has done a brilliant job coming back from his labral tear surgery just a couple of weeks before I had my surgery.

Here is a most interesting article about coach Alberto Salazar and where America's running programs need to go in the future. It is interesting that the Kenyans and the Bekeles had previously asked Alberto to consider coaching them.

The Bekele's are Nike-sponsored runners. Decent guys, by all accounts. No doubt, sensational talents. And while Salazar turned down an offer from the Kenyans a few years ago, and rebuffed the Bekele's a few years ago in their first ask, he toyed with the idea of taking on one, or both, last year, around the time he took on Farah. He even took the idea to Rupp, just to feel him out. 
Maybe to motivate him, too, a little. Who knows?
Rupp said, "Aren't those the guys we're trying to beat?!?"
And did Mo Farah and Galen Rupp beat those guys!

Last weeks mileage
Monday 3 miles- Mine Falls Trail 5K 23:16 a 40 second improvement from 2 weeks earlier
Tuesday: bike 8 miles
Wednesday: run 8 miles
Thursday: run 5 miles in Falmouth
Friday: run 8 miles
Saturday: 0 miles bike 8 miles
Sunday: 0 miles
Total miles: 24 miles running

The muscles around my hip are having a hard time with the 5k races. I need to work on stability more as well as to get more range of motion. These races hurt a lot, despite my overall slowness. I can't get the hip to move me faster. I did the race again tonight in the the same exact time as last week.

Desiree Davila's Olympics

I have been reading for weeks about Desi Davila's hip flexor injury and whether she would or wouldn't attempt the Olympic Marathon. It is too bad that such a tough runner was felled by an injury right before the biggest race in her life, the race that had been her lifelong goal.

A hip or groin injury suffered during a series of workouts in early July didn't allow her to train regularly in the run-up to London. She worked out on an anti-gravity treadmill, underwent daily physical therapy for the injury and even took a cortisone injection last month before heading overseas.

There was no alternate to take her spot, so she justly suited up for the marathon race in London and hoped for a miracle. It didn't happen and she ran 2.2 miles before dropping out.

An article today brings up a possibility that Desi has a labral tear in her hip. That is something I had been wondering about all along.

An MRI had ruled out a fracture, but Davila, 29, will go for another round of tests when she returns home, she said. It could simply be tendinitis in her hip flexor. It could be a torn labrum. It could be a sports hernia. She's heard all sorts of theories the last few weeks.

Hopefully, it is just tendinitis. A sports hernia and labral tear require surgery and a long recovery. If it is a labral tear, Desi can gain confidence in the fact that New Zealand 1500 meter runner is looking like a strong candidate for a second Olympic medal despite arthroscopic surgery for a torn labrum three years ago as well as Tyson Gay's fourth place finish in the 100 meters yesterday after surgery on his hip last July. It is a injury and surgery I know well, as I am now one year post surgery for a torn labrum in my hip. Whatever happens, we can only hope that Desiree Davilla gets another shot at Olympic Glory in Rio. After all, who can forget Desi's inspiring run to the finish line at the 2011 Boston Marathon?