Monday, October 26, 2009

Detroit Half Marathon Deaths

The more I think about the deaths in the Detroit Half Marathon, the more freaked I get.

The facts:
  • three men died
  • all within 16 minutes
  • all within a mile and a half
  • age varied from 26 to 65
The reasoned conjecture:

It sounds like, from this article, that the initial anatomic pathology report was negative. If that is the case we can rule-out the following causes of death:
  • Acute myocardial infarction (leading candidate for the 65 year old)
  • Hypertrophic cardiomyopathy (a common explanation for when apparently healthy athletes keels over dead during athletics)
  • Electrolyte abnormalities. Chemistries should have been available within minutes and if there was massive rhabdomyolysis with hyperkalemia and hypocalcemia or acute hyponatremia with cerebral edema I would expect that would have been announced.
What's left:
  • Sudden cardiac death (SCD) in a anatomically normal heart. Deadly heart arrhythmia.
That's all I can come up with. The problem with sudden cardiac death is it doesn't explain the geographic and temporal clustering. SCD is essentially random. The patients would increase the risk by racing up their heart rate and going into a bit of oxygen debt. Additionally I ran past two of the three resuscitation efforts. They had defibrillators on site and immediate CPR. My gut says that with the great first response they should have been able to get at least one save if it was SCD. The victims were in good shape without long lists of co-morbidities. The one factor that blocks success of out-of-hospital resuscitation is time to first response and by all accounts that was not an issue here.

The paranoid conjecture

The Detroit running community has been whispering whether the water or Gator-ade at the Mile 12 hydration station could have been poisoned. That would explain the temporal/spatial clustering and the negative anatomic autopsy.

I hope some new data emerges in the next few days to reassure me, but right now I'm planning on running with my CamelBack and drinking my own water in New York.

Good link on cause of cardiac deaths in runners
The Sudden Cardiac Death Association (sponsored by MedTronic presumably) weighs in.

Sunday, October 25, 2009

The home stretch.

I did 8.4 tonite and I am ready. I was breezing through mile 8 as my heart rate was loping along at 80.

I can see the goal clearly now.
The milestone approaches.
Eighteen months.
3 half marathons
5 days at Glacier

All that's left is
Run 5 and a parking garage on Tuesday

Run it again on Thursday

Fly out on Friday.

Pick up my bib on Saturday at the Javitz
Halloween it up all Saturday
Set the clocks back an hour before bed

Wake up at 5 am? 4 am? to go to Staten Island.

at 9:40, 10:00 or 10:20: Run boy run

4 hours later: its all over.

Monday, October 19, 2009

Detroit half marathon is in the bag

I ran without music as kind of trial run for New York. Mostly it was good but there
were some lonely miles around mile 9-12 that could have used some additional entertainment.
I think my plan will be to carry a Nano with some music loaded on it. Or even a shuffle.

Here is me after the race calling Cathy.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Last year's Free Press Marathon

7:19 AM Fanfare for the Common Man
3:28 Eugene Ormandy Copland: Appalachian Spring, Billy the Kid & Others
This was the start music it was perfect for the slow start. I remember the count down: 5...4...3...2….1….Siren. Then you just stood there. And 40 seconds would pass and would you take a step or two. Then you’d stand and eventually take another step. Finally, after minutes of waiting, up ahead you could see the furthest people’s heads begin to bounce. Then the bounce would slowly progress through the crowds towards you and then envelop you and my head began to bounce.

Too bad the song was too short. I was loving it.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Detroit marathon

Though I am on my taper I have signed up for the Detroit Marathon half and the relay. I am going to lead off the SCSP relay team and then continue to cruise in for the half marathon. We had our team meeting today and Joe really wants us to break four hours. I'm looking at the math and I don't think we can do it. We'll see.

The half marathon:

My leg of the relay:

Sunday, October 4, 2009

The second twenty is in the bag!

I did my second twenty and it went better (and faster) than the first. I shaved off twenty minutes from my first twenty. I also drove to Rochester to run on the Paint Creek Trail a rails to trails project that runs 8.9 miles. I did a couple of miles in downtown Rochester and then on to the trail.

When I started running there were all these police officers. When I got on the trail I learned why. the Brooksie half marathon was running the same trail from on mile 6. I was about an hour ahead of the race and never saw any of the racers but it was a fun coincidence. It was made even better finding out that one of my friends, Ruth, actually ran the Half.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Going to get new shoes

Tomorrow is the last long run before the taper. Hope the new shoes help with some of niggling injuries.

-- Posted from my iPhone

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Cold weather run

Last night it was probably 50 degrees. What pleasent running weather. I had forgotten how nice it was to run in the cold.

-- Posted from my iPhone