PM - 4 miles on the golf course. For the most part the soft surface was good for my foot, but afterwards it has become obvious that the continued running is at best prolonging the recovery, and at worst, exacerbating the injury. Disappointing indeed - but I have had experience with metatarsal stress fractures/injuries. I don't have a formal diagnosis but the symptoms are all too familiar and the treatment is simple (discontinue running and impact to the foot to allow the bone to remodel and repair). Just takes time and requires patience. I have multiple cross training options. Going to give it a month or so and reevaluate.
So as a year-end summary - I had a few positives this year - no PR's (and frankly don't expect any in the future as I near age 50) - but I ended up running 3 marathons and was able to run most of the year. In August of 2013 I had surgery to repair torn muscles commonly known as a sports hernia. Recovery was good, but I probably was a bit too ambitious with a goal of running Boston 7 months later and the training put too much stress on my body which resulted in a tweak to my left hip flexor. I wanted to be a part of Boston this year, so I decreased my training volume and intensity and made it to the starting line. Was happy to be a part of the event, finishing the race in a very conservative 3:29, but decided that I was retiring from marathons at the finish, given how much that race distance punishes the body.
I relocated from Florida to Atlanta in June which was a signficant transition for me and my family. I ran easy for a few months never too hard or too long as I "ran through" the recovery of the hip flexor tear. Around the middle of the summer, the injury resolved itself and I was able to resume training, but was woefully out of condition. Ran the Peachtree road race for the first time ever, and met Meb and got a photo with him as Richie and I participated.
At the persistent invitation of Richie in August, I was convinced to train and run the NYC marathon in November to be a part of the event where he earnestly expected a signficant PR for himself and wanted his closest friends and family to be there with him. Three weeks prior to NYC, (and 4 days prior to the event) I had an impromptu offer to run Chicago (with someone else's bib number who had a last minute scheduling conflict) as a training run where Richie and I paced our friend, Justin toward a 3:30 marathon goal time. We were supposed to drop out at mile 20 or 22, but a few game-day decisions led me to finish the race at 3:28 - on a spectacular day - and a very enjoyable experience. NYC however was not so enjoyable and turned out to be a cold and blustery challenge. I ran conservatively but struggled late to a 3:14 finish and Richie stuggling even more at the end than me, after being on a pace of 2:52 to finish 3:13.
I took some days off after NYC and ran at a volume of 30-40 mpw - but started noticing an achiness in the left foot, which became more acute in the middle of December as I began to introduce more mileage volume, and so it seems as I close out this year, I may have a stress fracture, or stress reaction that will sideline me for a few weeks and redirect me to some cross training for the next month or so.
All in all - after a year in 2013 in which I had PRs in the half marathon (1:25) and in the marathon (2:59) - 2014 was a year of recovery and somewhat unexpected marathon majors which to me was generally positive given that at the end of 2013 I was recovering from an injury so severe that it required a surgical repair.
I don't have any race plans in place yet for 2015 as I think it will be best for me to recover from the foot injury and gradually build up an aerobic base with perhaps the hope of setting some plans for a race or two in late summer and into the fall.