Tag: masters

May/June 2014 : Issue 20

Run on the ground. Welcome to the May/June issue of the underground. It’s our biggest edition ever at a whopping 48 pages. Enjoy every last one of them and be sure to tell all your friends about it.  We got you covered when it comes to the Boston Marathon but that’s just the tip of the iceberg as lots of our normal features are in this issue too: performance, nutrition, commentary, athlete profiles. As always, the digital copy of the magazine is free, but if you would like to purchase a hard copy you may do so via the hp MagCloud site.  In either medium, get reading!

May/June 2014

Issue 20

Table of Contents

issue XX

Click cover to start reading

The Warm-up
Editor’s Note
Level Communications
Electronic Epistles
Lane 1: Performance
Lane 2: Body Shop
Group Running
Lane 3: Nutrition
Brush w/ Fame
Denise Robson
Legion Profiles
Katie Edwards
Mike Galoob
Nick Karwoski
Nancy Cook
Club Spotlight
Boston Marathon Coverage
National Report
Local Report
Boston after Boston
Lane 4: Commentary
Mountain Series
If You Map It
Gait Analysis
The Cooldown
Learn the Legion

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April Was Hammer Time

Mason Ramble Hammer

Pete surges to the front to challenge eventual winner Mike Galoob at the James Joyce Ramble. Courtesy of Scott Mason Photo.

Peter Hammer showed the rest of the masters that they in fact couldn’t touch this at the Boston Marathon when he led his BAA team to the masters title. Then on short rest proved that he was too legit to quit by nearly winning the overall title at the national masters 10k road championships. Okay, we’ll stop before we get to any Adams Groove references. Point is, Peter was just named the Athlete of the Month for April by the USATF-NE:

Boston Athletic Association distance runner Pete Hammer (Needham MA) is the USATF – New England Athlete of the Month for April 2014. On April 21 in the B.A.A. Boston Marathon, Hammer ran a time of 2:33:02 to place 2nd in the 45-49 division (8th overall among all age 40+ competitors). Six days later, he was the overall runner-up at the USA Masters 10K Road Race Championship held in conjunction with the James Joyce Ramble in Dedham MA on April 27, recording a time of 32:41 that was just 4 seconds behind overall winner Mike Galoob. In both races, he led his B.A.A. club to the Masters (age 40+) team titles.

Check out the list of all USATF-NE Athletes of the Month.

Real Recovery

Recovery After 40

“Age is a relentless competitor.” – Bill Bowerman

by Rich Stiller

A few years ago I received an email invite to attend a reunion of many of the top San Francisco area runners of the 1970′s and 80′s. Unfortunately I was out of town for the event but close to 100 runners showed up at a local park for a barbecue and some serious reminiscing.

After I got back to the Bay Area I exchanged emails with Jack, who had hosted the event. He said that most of the former racers were no longer running at all. Many hadn’t run in years. “If we had put on a 5k race, you might have won,” he said. Although in my early sixties, I could still run in the 20 minute range for 5k.

Over the years many of them had simply broken down. Knees, Achilles, calf, back injuries, you name it. Most had run relatively high mileage in their twenties and thirties. Heck, I considered myself a real wuss because I rarely trained over 70 miles per week.

Few runners surrender their fast times willingly and veteran runners who train and compete for the pure joy of it do not go gently into the night of nonrunning retirement. But why could I still compete while others hung up their spikes? Simple: I adjusted to the accumulated wear and tear while many of them didn’t.

In my mid-forties, after 18 years of solid training and racing, I began to crater. I was still running close to 50-60 miles per week and rarely missed a day of training. At 39 I could still run 33 minutes for 10k. At age 45 I couldn’t break 40. No gradual slope. Just a sharp drop off a cliff. For the first time in my running career, I was forced to look at real recovery.

In my twenties and thirties a recovery run was usually 6-8 miles at a seven minute pace. If I was really beat up two weeks of easy running usually put me right. But I never had to miss a day of running. I just ran slower.

In my early forties, a recovery run became what one writer called a “4-6 mile calorie burner.” The pace of these runs was little more than a slog. Hey, at least I was still training seven days a week.

In my mid-forties recovery became something else. With legs that often felt like sacks of cement, I knew that if I wanted to keep running and competing I would need to change up the training.

In 1990, I read an article by Olympian Jeff Galloway who was the same age as me. In the article he talked about going through the same dead legged syndrome I was experiencing. He shifted to running every other day. What this meant for me was cutting back to around 35 miles a week. It was against everything that running had been for me over the last 15 years.

After a few months of mulling this around, I gave it a try. It was the first time I began running a “virtual” training week. I could still run seven training days including tempo, speed and a long run but it took me 14 days to get those seven days in. Did it work? Within six months I was running in the 35 minute range for 10k. As far as I was concerned it worked just fine.

I didn’t talk to other runners about it very often. If I had trouble thinking about the concept, it was a foreign language to my peers.

Here’s what I realized: there are two types of older runners. First, the older legged veterans who have run for years and have accumulated vast amounts of mileage on their legs. Second, the younger legged older runners. These runners either started later in life or took a long period of time off from running-often fifteen or twenty years.

The older legged runners have used up their thirty year, one hundred thousand mile warranties. They may still be able to run if they adjusted for age and wear and tear, but their fast times are behind them. The muscles and tendons in their legs no longer have the resiliency. Many don’t adjust and are taken out by injury or just the plain old plods. Plods is a pace in which the delta between running and walking has come dangerously close to one another.

The younger legged older runner shows up on the scene minus the mileage and wear and tear. If they’re willing to train, they can run fast times relative to their age. Runners who could never have beaten the Bill Rodgers and Frank Shorter’s of the world, run right by them these days.

What I have found is that after 46 years of running and well over one hundred thousand miles, a day off from running is not really a day off. My legs and body read that off day just the same as it once read that easy 6-8 mile run at a 7 minute pace. I can lay in bed all day sipping lattes and my legs have run 6-8 miles. So if I go out and run at all, I am simply adding mileage to the 6-8 that’s already there.

If I run an easy 4 miles on that off day, it’s like I ran 10-12 miles and anyone knows that 10-12 miles is not a real recovery day especially as a veteran runner with a penchant for beat up legs.

Now in my sixties my virtual week has lengthened again. Like it or not (and I don’t like it at all), my virtual week is about 18 days now. So if I play it safe, I can do a tempo run, speed workout, and a long run in that cycle. I can also do 4 other easier runs. It just takes me 18 days to accomplish this feat. The other days are totally off. Well, not really. My body “thinks” it has run another 11 days and 66-88 miles.

It’s difficult when you’re young and strong and able to run every day to imagine a time where your body sort of betrays you. In my thirties I knew I would start slowing down in the next few decades. What I didn’t understand was that I no longer would be able to sustain every day running.

In the end I accepted the need for an “adjustment” and bought myself not only another five years of good age group racing but also (to date) another 23 years of running. These days I am as slow as mud but at least I can still run. I rarely ever do the same thing week to week. My long runs are every second or even third weekend. Tempo runs every other week. Fast reps are done on weeks when I am not doing tempo. I run by time and no longer by miles. I no longer even think in terms of mileage. I think in terms of workouts.

Last year I ran into one of those top 100 guys; he even placed 2nd at Boston one year. Like all runners we talked about our training. He had continued to train 6-7 days a week into his 50′s. I was running 3-4 days a week. I explained my rationale but he was having none of it. “I couldn’t do that,” he said. “Never.” Here we were years later catching up. He told me that he rarely if ever ran anymore. His knee had blown out on him.

Real recovery is a selfish act that often requires the older runner to say “no.” You must tell yourself “no” I’m not going on that easy run. You must tell your friends “no” because that very run will inhibit your recovery. In short, “no” becomes a critical tool in the art of recovery.

Rich Stiller has been running and racing since 1968. This article originally appeared in the Nov/Dec 2013 issue of Level Renner. Get your free subscription today (box in upper right portion of screen).

Masters Mountain Running World Championship

Masters Mountain Running World Championships – Janske Lazne, Czech Republic

Guest blog by Dave Dunham

I did not feel ready for this race due to my hamstring woes, but I felt that I’d give it my best.  We had to wait through the morning as the 5 year age groups went off.  We (me, Francis, and TiVO) would be starting at 1:00 PM, just about the worst time to race…it ruins the whole day J

It was warm and dry when we headed out for a warm-up over the first 3k of the course.  It started with a 300’ climb and descent over nice single-track trail then the “real” racing would begin with a 5km+ climb averaging around 10% grade (500’ per mile).  My hope was to survive the up/down part then find a good rhythm on the climb.  I felt okay on the warm-up and had some great pre-race jitters, so I was definitely mentally in the game.

The author takes on Loon Mt, earlier this summer. Courtesy of Scott Mason Photo.

The author takes on Loon Mt, earlier this summer. Courtesy of Scott Mason Photo.

We got lined up and I found a spot 3 or 4 rows from the front with TiVO right with me.  Francis lined up in the front row on the other side.  I had heard that it might be very fast and aggressive at the start.  I was surprised to find that it seemed to go out reasonably and I didn’t have to fight for position.  On the first climb I found myself in eighth place and TiVO was a few seconds ahead.  Francis was up front in a pack with the top few guys.  The downhill wasn’t too bad, I just lost one place but my hamstring was not bad and I was looking forward to the climb.

It was really warm during most of the climb and the parts on the dirt road were dusty at times when the wind kicked up.  It was fun reeling in some of the other category runners on the climb and for the first 2K of climbing I could still see TiVO and Francis up ahead.  We hit the toughest stretch (a 25% grade on a ski slope) and I could see all 8 guys in front of me.  Of course at that steepness and clear view, you could see a few minutes ahead.  With 3k to go TiVO was 22 seconds ahead and looking strong.  I felt pretty good right up until we hit the long (500m?) downhill/flat stretch.  My legs just wouldn’t go fast.  At the 1km to go sign I heard someone charging fast and he zoomed by.  We started the final climb and I was able to reel him back in.  We hit the top with 500m to go and BOOM he took off, 200m later I was passed by another guy and had no response.

I crossed the line in 45:31, for the 8.6km (5.4m) course with 3,000’ of climb, taking 11th place.  Francis took 4th place and TiVO got 8th place, both nabbing there best finish at a Masters World champs.  We combined for 23 points which left us 2 points shy of the gold medal.  Germany beat us and I felt pretty bad that it hinged on the two guys who beat me in the last few minutes of the race.  I guess I’ll have to go to Telfes, Austria next year and work harder.  I closed out the day with a warm-down run back down the mountain trying to savor it, knowing it would be my last run for a month.

1 Paul Sichermann            GER            48            41:56
2 Grzegorz Czyz               POL              45            42:12
3 Rostislav Petrass  CZE              47            42:57
4 Francis Burdett             USA              48            43:31
5 Paul Dugdale                GBR              48            43:36
6 Borek Janick                 CZE              48            43:45
7 Siegfried Krischer  GER              45            44:05
8 Tim Van Orden             USA              45            44:21
9 Jim Jurcik                     SVK              45            45:21
10 Stephen Pyke                        GBR              48            45:36
11 Dave Dunham             USA              49            45:31
12 Kjell Mundal                NOR              49            47:02
13 Bernd Keppler                        GER              48            47:57
14 Ladislav Sventek SVK              48            48:13
15 Uwe Hansch               GER              48            49:10

1          GER       21 
SICHERMANN Paul        1
KRISCHER Siegfried             7
KEPPLER Bernd                13
 2         USA       23 
BURDETT Francis              4
VAN ORDEN Tim         8
DUNHAM Dave                 11
 3         CZE        30 
PETRÁŠ Rostislav              3
JANČÍK Bořek                 6
SOUKUP Petr                   21
 4         GBR       40 
DUGDALE Paul                 5
PYKE Stephen                         10
WHITAKER Jonathan             25
 5         SVK       56 
JURČÍK Ján                     9
SVENTEK Ladislav              14
BULIK Milan                   33
 6         ITA        63 
ECCHELI Alessandro           16
TODESCO Fiorenzo              19
SOVRAN Paolo                 28

Follow DD a little more closely by checking out his great blog Double-D Mountain Runner.

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