Monday, January 3, 2011

FoCo Runner 2010: my year in review.

Year End summary from 2010 provided by dailymile. This includes all my cardio workouts logged on the website (mostly running and cycling). For full details, click on the image. It links to the full report.
This should be very brief.  I started the year, thinking I could reach 500 miles running by year's end, and planning to run a bunch of 5K races, and maybe one or two 10K's. I finished the year having run 14 races, including a half marathon, a 10 miler, four 10K's, a 3.75 mile trail race, and a bunch of 5K's. Some of the races were handicapped club races put on by the Fort Collins Running Club, but I ran them as hard as any other race.

I was hampered to start the year with ITBS, which I beat with a combination of some changes to my form, and some strengthening exercises. Then, in April, I had a damaged or inflamed nerve on top of my right foot that hurt badly when I ran more than a couple of miles. Some rest took care of that. Then, I had some patellofemoral pain after running more than 50 miles a week for a few weeks leading up to the half marathon. I rested it during the taper period, and then it came back with 5 miles left in the race, causing me to change my gait, and I ended up with a strained MCL and a cartilage contusion in that same knee as a result. I still managed to finish the race while smashing my goal time of 1:45 by three minutes, but then I could barely walk for days, and had to rehab with some cycling and build up my running mileage gradually over several weeks afterward. To my surprise, when I finally raced again a few weeks later (a 5K), I achieved a new PR, and not long after I completed a tough 10 miler on rolling dirt roads without a problem. Through it all, I managed to get some second place age group awards, and even placed second male overall in a 5K race, when the real speedsters didn't enter the event (nice).

One of the highlights of the year was the Bolder Boulder 10K. It's an expensive race to enter, but there's something about running 10K with 50,000 other runners through Boulder, and finishing in a stadium fully of spectators, that really gets your spirits up about running. The expo and memorial day festivities were also quite impressive, as were the many groups of spectators, dancers, musicians, and other performers along the course (many of whom were actually participating in the race).

If not for the Pain of my knee injury, I think I would really have enjoyed the Georgetown to Idaho Springs Half Marathon a lot more, but it was still a well-run event that was very much worthwhile. If I run it again, at least I know what to expect with regards to the downhill running. It had some pretty steep downhill sections.

The Bacon Strip 10 Miler was another cool event. It was the least expensive event of the year, all of by about a quarter mile of which was run on rural dirt/gravel roads. Traction wasn't good, and the rolling hills don't help, but that's part of the fun and challenge of this old-school event that is a local favorite. Don't expect sports drink at the two aid stations, unless you're carrying your own, and don't be disappointed by the stop watch timing. That's just the way the Bacon Strip races are run. Like I said...  Old school.

Logistics and finances prevented me from finishing the year with one final attempt at a sub-20 minute 5K, but that's all right. That goal will carry over into 2011 nicely, although I may have to wait until after the Colorado Marathon to have another serious go at it. We'll see what opportunities arise.

I wish everyone I've met this year, those who have inspired and supported me, and those I have supported, prosperous, and successful 2011. Be safe, healthy, happy, and live with ease.

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