Friday, 30 March 2007

Off to Berlin

training stats
Th 29/03: easy jog, 12K, 1:17 hrs

Tu 27/03: slow run, 7.5K, 0:46 hrs

After the short run on Tuesday I decided to go for the half marathon in Berlin, booked a hotel and asked my son who lives in Berlin to get a late entry number for me what he successfully did yesterday. I'll take my mum with me as she is keen to see her grandson again after a long time. She has collected three big packing cases full of household contents he might not totally be pleased to receive tomorrow.

Photo 2006: Venue of the Halfmarathon Finish in front
of Berlin Cathedral (on the day after the race)

My target is to finish inside 1:40 hrs what is the qualifying time of my age group for the New York City Marathon. I doubt that I am already capable to keep the necessary speed of 7:35 min/mile but I will try as long as possible and then we'll see.

Formally I could still rely on my qualifying run of last year (1:36) but I claimed this one successfully once and I don't think the organisers will accept it a second time.

Sunday, 25 March 2007

Run in the Sun

training stats
Su 25/03: long run, 26K, 2:36 hrs
week's total: 50K

Since I got rid of the plaster earlier than expected I was happy to join B for a long run which originally was scheduled for next week. And it turned out to become even longer than scheduled. The weather contributed to the enjoyment as you see. I had a short low after around 20K but alltogether the run along Lake Harkort and Lake Hengstey was as pleasureful as a real come back for a once injured runner can be.

With such a nice morning I easily got over the loss of my Berlin Marathon Souvenir Cap which flew down into the river when we crossed the bridge. Maybe I will be able to buy a new one next weekend: I think about taking part in the Berlin Halfmarathon on next Sunday. Will decide not before Tuesday as I want to wait for anything starting to hurt until then.

Friday, 23 March 2007

Happy English Way of Life

training stats
Fr 23/03: medium run, 14K, 1:19 hrs

Short quotation of the Landmark Trust's recent newsletter :

"It was with great sadness that we learnt of Sir John Smith's death on 28 February 2007."

This single sentence keenly reminds me that I love Britain and the English language and the British way of life. I very much look forward to crossing the Channel and feeling coming home again. The London Marathon will help for a while but the real come back I hope to experience when I will visit the Lake District in June. It is my favourite English destination and although I have already climbed every peak higher than 2000 feet (between 1992 and 1996, there are 165) I would love to see every place again.

Reading this you might recognise that my heart seems to be repaired totally. It is amazing how changable life can be even when you have left those years most will regard as the most livable.

As I got rid of the plaster earlier than planned I am going to change my training schedule and try a long run on next Sunday. Several parts of my body are hurting - the arm of course, but also the forefoot and the fit knee - but I will try to do a long run - some distance beyond 25K.

European champion Ulrike Maisch told that she wasn't able to run longer than 15K but she still hopes to run the Hamburg Marathon on April 29. She is motivating me, too.

I just want to report that U has successfully finished his 230K long distance run along the river Ruhr. This is his finish photo at the meeting of Ruhr and Rhine:

German readers might enjoy to read the full report.

Tuesday, 20 March 2007

Cast off !

Training stats
Tu 20/03: slow jog, 10K, 1:06 hrs

Good news from the doc. He allowed me to take off the cast. One week earlier than expected! Less nice his answer was when I asked him whether my arm will get as fit as it was before the accident. Okay, I will work on it. Runners don't give up early.

Yesterday I accompanied fellow runner U along a short part of his 4th stage of a long-dictance-run. U is probably the first person who does the recently opened Ruhrtal bike path on foot. It's a distance of roughly 150 miles and he hopes to complete it within 5 days. He started last Friday and yesterday he passed our hometown Witten according to schedule. (don't worry, it's only a museum railway which works only once a month)

U explains that it is the constant and permanent movement what fascinates him and he loves to relax by running slowly for hours. He is a dedicated long-distance runner, a committed musician and a professional firefighter.

I add some photos of our local Ruhr valley. The Ruhr is a clean river without industrial shipping. The source is close to Winterberg, a small town high in the mountain range of the Sauerland, and it meets the river Rhine after 150 miles at Duisburg.

Castle Hardenstein dates back to 14th century.

A small ferry opened last year to serve the many bikers who follow the very popular river path. The boat starts work at mid of April.

Sunday, 18 March 2007

Runs and Thoughts

training stats
Su 18/03: medium run, 14.5K, 1:21 hrs
Sa 17/03: indoor biking, 60min
week's total: 41K

I still stick to flat routes to take care of the knee. Therefore it was out of question to join the Sunday group where fellow runners always do a strenuous hilly workout. I thought about running with the field of today's Railway Halfmarathon in Hattingen, but there I would come across somebody I would prefer not to meet. I also had the feeling it would be best to run on my own today and get thoughts sorted.

So I turned to another local reservoir, Lake Harkort (photo: Wiki), for a prolonged lap along its banks. A familiar surrounding from bike tours but never before I ran this route.

The weather was dreadful, pouring rain and strong westerly winds. I met only dedicated sports people en route, just runners and a lot of scullers of the local rowing club. Second Wiki-photo: The moated castle of Werdringen is a nice spot I passed after 8K.

When I reached the car park after 1:21 hrs and almost 15K, there was no dry square inch left on me. A really enjoyable run, honestly.

Wonder about my thoughts sorted while running?
Last year I felt really fine with my way of living. Certainly there are always things we more or less miss. Happiness is always a matter of moments, not of life. It might be the better way to concentrate on what you love to do. And check carefully before allowing sudden changes to your life. Just pick out what is best for you and don't expect too much of yourself and others. - Well, that's the theory! You might have recognised that I am that kind of men who always go for the full Monty. However, early pension is the perfect time to learn from scratch.

Thursday, 15 March 2007

Unexpected Meeting

training stats
Th 15/03: sunny run, 17K, 1:34 hrs

A medium 12k run was scheduled for today. Usually I prefer to roam the local woods but I wanted to relieve the knee and decided to run along the local Lake Kemnade, a popular place with a flat tarmacced 10-12K lap along its shores (photo: Wiki).

I took a different car park than usual and started into the other direction just because I wanted to avoid to be reminded too much on Tuesday's dreadful run.

Surprisingly after 30 minutes of jogging I came across someBody unexpected - the lady I might have mentioned before. She had just started her long run and - next surprise - did not refuse to be accompanied. No question I turned and stayed for one lap at her side while she concentrated on her ipod and kept a remarkable speed, having in mind that she was on course for 30K. The result for me was that my workout got a bit longer than planned but the knee did not complain, so I felt fine and will think about shortening the Sunday run instead.

You see - life is still exciting.

Wednesday, 14 March 2007


Never was it that clear to me that everything what happens happens inside yourself. There can be summer outside, as long as it is cold and dark inside you it is definitely winter. The calender can tell that it was just a day, if it feels to you like a whole year it was a year. If everybody calls it senseless but you feel you need it you will have to do it.

The obvious conclusion is that you only have to change your thoughts and feelings to change the world. But this doesn't make it easier.

Tuesday, 13 March 2007

On Track

training stats
Tu 13/03: easy run, 9K, 50min

I am still on track of my Just-Arrive-Schedule. While I have to say my first target still is to get to the start on April 22. Once en route we'll see.

This morning's run was the most unhappy one of my life. I am still struggling at lot with changing moods. The good thing is that I react to all these sort of feelings by eating next to nothing. So my weight is fairly close to competition level. Experience advises that it only needs time to heal all your wounds. I guess it will work once more.

Sunday, 11 March 2007

Phoenix rising?

training stats
Su 11/03: decent run, 14.5K, 1:23 hrs
week's total: 33K

Is this the start of my come back?

There are those days when you wish to stop your watch to hold the moment forever. Today it was a perfect day like early spring with clear air and warm sunshine.

Coming back after a forced rest of more than 2 months caused a feeling of happiness which made be beaming and cheering along the two laps around the local Lake Hengstey (wiki photo). The compliant knee and the fine weather, the most beautiful lady I know running alongside me: No wonder, that my mood raised to forgotten heights. Even the heart felt like being nearly repaired, certainly leaving a noticeable scar, but this is what life does to us, doesn't it?

To get back to reality: I still place the helpful ice bag onto the knee frequently, but this only as a precaution. Injections are finished so far, but I continue throwing in Glucosamine pills.

Thursday, 8 March 2007

Another Fracture

Training stats
Thu 08/03: slow run, 10.3K, 58 min

A broken arm was not enough. Yesterday it happened to me that someBody broke my heart. If anybody knows of a technique to erase parts of the human memory would you please be so kind to pass it on to me.

There could be no better day to turn this blog back into a training blog aiming for London Marathon 2007. Today was my first proper workout since December, I am on course of my just-arrive-schedule and the knee is promising more.

Tuesday, 6 March 2007


training stats
Tu 06/03: easy jog, 8K, 47 min

Su 04/03: easy jog, 5K, 30 min

Went to another casting this morning. Meaning: I got a new cast again. The doc raised my hopes as he promised I would get "something nicer".

Alright, it is a plastic one now and it is much lighter and more slender. But it is much harder, too. I am no longer able to do most of the ordinary moves, even typewriting is very difficult. I think I will have to prepare it to give me more space.

At least the cast forces a perfect running style. Experts advise to hold the arms bended by a 90° angle. That is what my cast ensures.

The very best news is that I managed to follow my running schedule without any complaining by the knee so far. Next test takes place on Thursday. Just Arrive 2007 schedule

Saturday, 3 March 2007


training stats
Sa 03/03: indoor bike, 60min

The surgery was successful with the additional discovery that the cartilage opposite the broken bone end is severely damaged. The surgeon reported that he drilled two little holes into the bone to enhance the process of healing. Very nice. He added the arm will get fine again at least as I don't need it for running. He is right, that is what I already posted.

This kind of plaster is not the most wanted fitting to be carried while running. Did some easy indoor biking today. Within the cast the arm sweats piglike. I had to remove it (the cast) to let it dry.

The good news is that I will get a light plastic splint which will enable me to take up sports again. The bad news is that it will have to stay at the arm until end of march.