Friday, October 9, 2015

Compression for the New York City Marathon

This year with my legs cramping up starting around mile 13.  So, for the last few long training runs I have worn compression socks to get ready for the TCS New York City Marathon.   

I remember thinking I would never wear knee high socks with shorts, and as I got focused on improving my running, I did not care!  Cramps really put a damper on a run.  In fact, I have had to cut a run short because of these cramps.  

Now, I am making sure I do my stretching daily, and dialing in my electrolytes and hydration.  Experience does help!

I am so happy that Irene order me a pair of Pro Compression Marathon Compression Socks last year, but I seldom wore them. Mostly because last year  I was training for Ironman, and my leg issues stemmed from an Achilles injury so I never ran that much to feel leg cramps.  This year has been run focused and boom! Cramps!  My darn calves were misfiring from being so fatigued.  I can't remember ever running this much at the same time running this well!

Pro Compression socks have the right thickness for my calves and stay up.  I have used others, but they just slip down.  This month, Irene decided to get a rainbow of colors!  

Guess which color I will be wearing for the NYC Marathon?

Monday, October 5, 2015

[DISAPPOINTMENT] You Can Not Dictate The Pace - New York City Marathon

3 weeks ago, I was so disappointed with hitting a Personal Record at the Inaugural Suffolk Half Marathon. At the start of the 2015 season, my goal was to crush the New York City Marathon with a 3 hour and 45 minute race.  My training thus far had me on track to come close to 3:45 (8:34 per mile pace), but as the long training runs progressed my endurance at longer distances began to decline and harder to maintain the goal pace that I set my expectations at.   

So, going into this new race,  I planned a sub 2:00 race (9:00 minute mile).  I looked forward to hitting my goal.  Everything started just fine. I warmed up with a 3 mile run and even had a chance to use a real restroom before the start gun shot.  However, every time I looked at my wrist after that start, my Garmin, kept adding numbers to that 9:00.  Then at the turnaround point at the St. John’s University Annex (Formerly LaSalle Military Academy) in Oakdale.  I mentally tossed in the towel and gave up.  I felt so disgusted that I did not even attempt to reset myself and do my best.  Then for the first time this season, my calves cramped up around mile 10.  It really went all downhill from there, not in the elevation of the course, but in my performance and self-confidence.  

I crossed the finish line with a 2:07:02 (9:41 pace) with a grimace and unhappiness.  Thinking I my best would never be good enough.  Actually, giving up all hope to even attempting a 3:45 marathon ever..  

After walking around in self pity, and talking to my Coach, Danielle.  She said, “You can’t dictate the pace.”  All I remember was that I was thinking that my body can’t handle this distance regardless of my training.  Even though I have done 10 marathons and an Ironman.  I really suck at running!  I struggled with running when I started and even with vast improvements with my running over the years, I felt like I will never hit my ultimate goal of qualifying for the Boston Marathon.

After a few days of recovery, I headed into the NYRR 18 Mile Tune Up Run with my friend Wolfgang.  It did not start good as Wolfgang asked me how will I be tracking my run.  I looked at my left wrist and apparently my watch was still at home.  I stayed calm and loaded MapMyRun onto my phone, so I can have some data for analysis and for my coach to review.

Since I could not see my pace with my phone tucked into my pouch, I was glad to see the race had pacers and I looked for the 4 hour pace runner.  The cool thing is that the pacer I found happened to be Otto Lam (not family related LOL)  Anyway I know Otto from a different race, but you can read more about it if you Google “Run with Noah Wineglass” for more details.

I stuck with Otto for about 6 miles, on pace at a 9 minute mile, and I even pulled ahead.  Then around mile 10, I started to feel tired.  Mile 12, Otto caught up to me and passed me then around mile 14, both calves started to cramp up along with my hamstrings.  Despite the setback, I felt calm and kept on walking as fast as I can for the next couple of miles.  This time I did not give up.  With every few minutes of walking, I tried to pick up the pace and each time I would cramp up.  I would try to ramp again only to keep walking.

Eventually, a Team for Kids Mentor, Karena, caught up to me and stayed with me for the next 3 miles.  We chatted the whole time with a couple times trying to run, only to cramp up.  Finally at the final mile, I gave it one last go to run, and this time my legs let me finish strong through the finish line.

The following week, I had a scheduled 19 miler only to be cut short at mile 10 with cramps.  This is not Good, but it was smart that I stopped.

Despite having the worst performances of 2015, I was delighted with what I did.  I was calm and more importantly I did not Give Up.  The words from Coach Dee, “You Can’t Dictate the Pace.” finally sunk in.  

So many factors go into a race, that we can not control, everyday we awake to a brand new day with unique circumstances beyond our control, Temperature, Wind, Viruses…   At the same time, there are many things  that we can control.  In our circle of influence, we do have a lot of say over how we view a situation.  With that in mind, I had the best 19 miles this past weekend, literally and mentally!    

This slice of my life reminded me what would I say to my kids if this happened to my kids.  In fact, I see this happen with my son, who puts a lot of pressure on himself and I can see when he gets disappointed.  I always reminded him, “Did you do your best?”

Success is not a Goal. It's the Journey that You Take. 4 Weeks Until the New York City Marathon!!!

Again, thanks for your support with my endeavours and more importantly your support of giving kids a healthy head start to life.  Please be generous at


Wednesday, September 9, 2015

XTerra Lava Shorts Review

One of the main reasons I have considered doing a triathlons is because of the use of a wetsuit.  2 years ago, it was time to work on the scariest part of the triathlon,  the swim.  And more scary was open water swimming.  However with a wetsuit, it would be very difficult to sink.  After doing hours of research, I came across XTerra, and decided to buy one of their suits, and since then I have gotten a couple for me and for my wife.

But in order for me to eventually qualify for Ironman Kona, I would need to tread water for probably 1/2 hour before swimming for the race, but without the aid of a wetsuit or floation device that would be impossible to do.  

While I have gotten better at swimming, I am no Andy Potts.  So I was surprised to get an email from Jay Weber asking me to try on the new Lava Shorts they created.  It's a variation of the Lava Pants.   Ultimately it helps with swim training by keeping the lower half more buoyant and keeping the swimmer more streamline.

So Monday, I finally had time to take the Lava Shorts for a "spin" in open water.  While I was not floating as easy as with a full wet suit, I was more buoyant.  Then as I sway, I could feel my feet flutter across the top of the water unlike before.  It was a weird feeling of having my hips higher in the water, which made it easier to swim.  

What I liked about it was that instead of a traditional swim buoy and expending energy trying to keep the buoy in between my legs, my whole hip and thighs were floating so that I can focus on my stroke.

Ultimately as the temps go down, I will be getting back into the pool.  This is were I will time myself without the Lava Shorts, with the Lava Shorts and after a couple of months see if my technique has improved after I have gotten use to the new improved position.

The funny thing is that, I sometimes want to wear my wetsuit at the pool, and I was not going to cut my wetsuit apart to wear them as shorts, so this came at the perfect time as the water will be getting cooler

I am getting excited about swimming better next year!

And as a bonus you can save up to 60% on XTerra Lava Shorts when you use code CO-RUNWITHNOAH 

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

[Perseverance] Proud of My Incredible Wife for Completing Her First Half Ironman


You never even know if you never even tried… So Irene jumped into the water, hopped on the bike and pounded the pavement for the better part of the day around the town called Gilford in the state of New Hampshire!

This past weekend the boys and I watched Irene compete her first Half Ironman Race, and despite the word Half in the name.  It takes FULL dedication and commitment.  Months of training and conditioning goes into the preparation for any race, but combining a 1.2 mile swim, 56 mile bike and a 13.1 run is an incredible feat to undertake.  In addition to different ailments, working full time, taking care of 3 kids, learning to swim, getting pulled from multiple triathlons, getting into a car accident 3 weeks before the race, then pulling her back 2 weeks before the race, all goes to show you that Irene is the definition of Perseverance.

When Irene decided to do an Half Ironman, the original plan was to take on the flat Ironman Princeton 70.3 and registration was to begin early spring for the September race, giving Irene plenty of time to train.  However Princeton eventually notified everyone that they had to cancel the race because they could not obtain the proper permits to host the race.  So, Irene decided on Ironman Timberman 70.3.  It happened to be a race I did last year.  

It was very tempting to do the race with her, but I really wanted to be focused on her and being her support team as she did when I trained for Ironman Arizona.  This is Her Year!

She was already building a base, and now it was about to be kicked up several notches!  For the  swim, she worked hard in the pool with Danielle Sullivan (our coach and the person who taught Irene how to swim) and added Brian Krut’s Open Water Swim of Long Island into her week.  I just remember thinking, Wow, I was doing that last year and not thinking anything of it.  And now Irene was doing it and always making all the swim practices.

In preparation of the hills of New Hampshire for the bike section, we biked the Quassy Course, Bear Mountain Harriman Loop, and even a loop of Ironman Lake Placid. All very difficult courses and she did them all.  During the Quassy Preview, we followed the wrong route, but that is a different story!

However going into the race, she knew she would have difficulty with the run portion, so she focused on the swim and bike to get the job done.  Towards the later months of the training, Danielle added more biking to compensate for the reduced running because of her bad back.

With all the training done, taper time was about to commence and BAM, she got into a car accident that totalled my Honda Insight, 3 weeks prior to the race. Then a week later she pulls her back.  Taperville had her well rested going into the race.

Going into the weekend, I was more anxious  than Irene.  She was calm and relaxed, she allowed herself to trust her training despite many setbacks over the course of the year.  She did the majority of the workouts and felt prepared.  For her, it was going to be another training day.

As for me, I am always calculating in my head, time and pace to get the race done in a certain goal. I usually get disappointed with myself for not hitting certain targets during the later stages of the race.  She knew what she had to do with her split times.


The Pro Men took off, then the Pro Women, and Irene’s group was Wave 5.  She smiled, which she normally never does before a race.  Which was a great sign.  Her plan was to stay far left away from the madness of the being close to the buoy line, however, I noticed that she stayed in the middle.  As soon as she took off, I started my stopwatch on my phone and headed to the swim finish, to witness my friends hop out of the water, one by one.   Eventually 1:00 popped up, then 1:05 and I started to worry because the time limit for her was 1:10.  I started to pray that she did not panic or get pulled into a boat.  Then my friend Colleen found me and said that Christina saw Irene pass, I am like no way.  Colleen again said, she’s out of the water, so I check the website and she was out in 51:51.  I was unhappy that I did not get a chance to shout Irene’s name or take a picture of her exiting.  In fact, the official photographer has me looking out into the water like an idiot as Irene passes him.

Irene Timberman 70.3 sim finisha .jpg

So it sunk in that she did the swim in less than an hour, I immediately had to look up my time from last year and went to the Timberman Results website to look up my time.  I did it in 50:27 which was really tough for me.  She said the swim was great and it was easy for her!

Obviously, I missed her bike mount as well, but the ice cream hut just opened up, so we had some scoops of Jordan’s Ice Cream.  Colleen and I then grabbed our kids and found a spot near the bike finish and was lucky to find a picnic table under a tree.  We sat in the shade for the next few hours.  Colleen’s husband was doing the bike segment of his relay team with Christina on the swim and Erick on the run.  Combined they produced a time that placed them 4th out of 56 relay teams.

For the next 3 hours, I relaxed and waited for my friends and Irene to cycle back into transition.  And I figured since the roads are semi-closed, no selfies, and cross roads would be monitored, she should be back in 4 hours.  Then 4 ½ hours past, Then 5 hours.  Then I was sort of freaking out thinking a phone call would be coming or something like that.  I’m thinking she might have fell down one of the hills and lying in a ditch behind a tree.


Finally, we see Irene pedaling back with a frown, and heads into transition.  I run over to the transition and watch her rack her bike, and I am thinking, did the race director tell her to stop when she got back.  Is she allowed to go on the run?  So I waited a couple minutes and she ran out the run out, and I see a big gash on her left knee, and I heard her say she fell on the first hill.  And she continued on with a grimace as she shuffled away for the first loop of the run course.  Will her leg give out?

I knew the run portion would be tough, as she had limited time training for the run.  She’s always had back pains so, I figured that she would do her best, but I was certain that she would be pulled from the race for not making the cut-off times along the course.  So, I did not move and waited on at the picnic table until she came back from the first loop.


Eventually, she came around the bend for the second loop.  In fact, our friend, The Very Easy Looking Charlie was blocking her as he was leaving with his bike out of the transition area.  She paused for him to get out of the way.  I can see him giving her some words of encouragement.  As she passed by, the boys cheered her on.  Charlie walked up and I was telling him, I am pretty sure she is passed the cut-off time and I am not sure what the race director will be doing.

Either the race director got scared when she looked at Irene’s direction or Irene did not hear the race director.  Either way, she was going to keep going!  That is Perseverance!!!!

Since the transition was breaking down, I decided to grab Irene’s bike and bring her gear back to the truck, so she did not have to walk any more to get her stuff after she finishes.  We then returned back to the run finish chute and waited.   I am praying that she is ok, nothing went wrong, or she did not get pulled from the course.  About an hour and 10 minutes into the second loop, I told the boys that I was going out on the run course to see where Mom was.

10 minutes later, I get a text that said that Christina was waiting with the boys, for which I am grateful.  As I walked along Scenic Drive, I shouted at the Potta-Potties, “Irene are you in there!”   

I saw participant coming towards me in a red top next to a bike support, and overheard some chatter through the bikers radio about the last person on the course.  It was not Irene, but as soon as she got close enough, I ask, “Was there anyone behind you in a blue top.”  They both said, “Yes!” and I congratulated her and walked faster down the road.

About 2 miles into my walking, I came to the crest of the steepest hill on the run course from what I remember. I could see her frown and the first thing she said to me was that her feet were on Fire!  The dumping of water on herself to cool herself down, waterlogged her shoes causing blisters on her soles.  All I remember saying was that I was Super Proud of her, the kids are waiting at the Finish Line and keep moving forward.  

I ignored the the swept car behind her, thinking that if I ignored them, they would not dare pull her into it. Eventually, she jogged, so I jogged, then walked, and I walked.  Going back and forth with the volunteers that we passed on the course clapping and cheering her on.

I asked her about her bloody knee that seemed to attract insects to nibble on it.  She clarified that her legs gave out on her during bike mount, which she fell and almost knocked down a fellow participant.  The volunteer helped her up and off she went, she realized that her brake was rubbing against her wheel for 35 miles, she could not adjust it with her hands because it still kept on going back to rubbing after hitting the brakes.  She was able to get bike support at mile 35, but by that time, her legs were definitely burnt out,    

I’ve been texting Danielle most of the day, so I figured Irene would like to hear her voice so I called her, then she called back and I put her on the speaker.  Danielle was happy to hear that Irene was still moving and getting closer to the finish!   

It did not dawn on me that she was the last person on the course, but it’s better to be the last person, because you get recognized!  The sweep car watched out for her to make sure she was safe.  A bike volunteer lead in front of her to warn any oncoming vehicles to move to the side.

Just before making the final turn, I ran ahead to the finish line to capture her in the chute and let the boys run along with her towards the finish for about 200 yards.  The race announcer called Irene’s name and the photographer took some final pics with her and the race director, and they draped her with a cool wet towel.  

She did it!  She never gave up!

We all gave her a hug as she teared up.  Her emotions were running strong.  Eventually, we guided her down to Lake Winnipesaukee, to cool off and I texted Emily that Mom did it!

IMG_20150816_171400077.jpg .   

I was so happy that the Race did not ask her to get into the car, they did remind her of the pace she needed to maintain to complete the race.  Even though she does not have an official time, she travelled 70.3 freaking miles of swimming, biking and running combined.  That is an extraordinary  feat to accomplish.


Doing triathlons, you are never alone.  Being part of the Wildwood Warriors with our homebase at Wildwood Lake in Riverhead and our Coach’s Team Iron Fit Endurance, felt so welcoming. The support is incredible.  It definitely does make a difference in participating in these tough events.  While these races have incredible spectators cheering you on, knowing someone doing the race or friends cheering you on takes the experience to a whole new level of connection.  

Participating in a races of this magnitude takes months of training, and race day is the end cap of sometimes grueling training schedule.  There is a special connection when you know a friend or loved one who is racing.  It’s like walking in someone else’s shoes for a mile, and you understand what they had to go through to get there.  Or should I say Running Shoes?

I can’t thank enough, my Iron Fit Endurance team mates who did the race, Shelley, Christa and Peter.  Big shout outs to my Wildwood Warrior Team at the race as well, June,
The Very Easy on the Eyes Charlie, Scotty, Isa, Mike and Jenny, Staci, Mary, Stephanie, Rick, Amy, Kevin, Nina, Carol and Tom, Todd, Erick, Kristen, Joanne, who always seems to be around to comfort me when I am worried, Mary Beth, who happened to be next to Irene in transition and at the start of the swim, which made Irene looked relaxed, Brian and Colleen for having their kids around for my kids to hang with, and Christine (one of my caucasian friends), who stayed with the boys and waited for Irene to finish down the chute.

Looking forward to being her Sherpa for 2016!

Sunday, July 5, 2015

Selden Hills 15K Failed Again

Today, I wanted to get in an easy 1:45 hilly run and I opted for Selden Hills.  The original plan was to hit the hills around 7am but I get there at 8 and went off up and down Adirondack, Berkshire and this time, the hills on Blue Point Road. 

Again I missed the loop at Laurel Place, so as I got closer to the finish, I made a loop at Cedarhurst.  I ended up with 9.71 miles in 1:41.  It was a nice easy pace.

As I finished, I noticed a pop up tent with some food with a bunch of food and liquids.  The last few times I ran the hills,  most of the time the parking lot is empty.  This time there must have been 20 people chatting.  And I saw the decal on the table, so I made sure I got the "I Ran The Selden Hills" decal! for me and Irene!

This was my second attempt at the official 15k.  I will be back to complete the official 15k course and I will probably do the new 20k course.

Oh boy!  69 days left for the Suffolk Marathon and 118 days left for the NYC Marathon

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Runner's World Cover Seach for Noah Lam #RWCoverSearch #833

My friend forwarded me a post about a contest to be on the Cover of Runner’s World Magazine and suggested that I put my “mug” on it. I’m like, “who wants to see this face?” All I did was sign up for the 2008 New York City Marathon and have kept running since. I thought it was nothing out of ordinary. I’m just an average guy.
But my friend said I deserved to be on the cover because of what I have done to transform myself and family by getting them involved with running. Now everyone in my family has done a triathlon- my wife is even training for an Ironman in 2016! He reminded me of my hardships of being told that I might never run again after herniated my back so bad that I was about to have surgery, having a seizure that disrupted my life and then going all in to do an Ironman.
He said that he could not think of a better person to be on the cover because I have inspired others to be better not only in regards to their health, but also inspired others to be better people and to get fit for themselves and their families. That is how you are going to create a healthier world for our children to step into!
The pictures that my friends love are the ones of me and my wife or me and my family. Actually, if I were to win, I would want my family to be on the cover with me. I wouldn’t be running if it were not for them. There are a few pics from the finish line that I thought would be great.
So now my Running Hat is in the ring for the Runner’s World Cover Search Contest which I have been assigned #833. You can vote by sharing on Facebook and Tweeting that you voted for me by using #RWCoverSearch #833.
You can vote for us once a day at Please bookmark it, vote every day and share the link to your friends and family!

Thursday, May 28, 2015

New York City Marathon Training Day 80 - Huffing and Puffing at the Track

Today, I hit the track at Suffolk Community College which has an infield of real grass slightly browning from the heat and sun.  A kid and his Dad was practicing with a soccer ball.  A few runners were doing loops and a few sprinters were striding on the far end doing 100 meters at a time.

Unfortunately I was short on time as I had to get on a conference call in less than an hour.  I warmed up with a mile easy run then did some short drills. then proceeded to do 
400 - 800 - 400 - 400 - 800 - 400 intervals with a full recovery in between.

There was a tailwind blowing south to north as I started down the first 200 yards, then I had to fight the wind going back to the starting point.  I was really tough and I could feel that I could not go any faster without puking or fainting.

By the last interval, I was sucking wind.  One of the sprinters reminded me to breathe through my nose and it helped slow my breathing down.

Irene made it to the track about an hour later and saw me do my last loop.  She was going to work out with our coach and team mates, while I had a conference call with Team for Kids for Mentors,

Cool that I have an opportunity to Mentor a new class for Team for Kids!!!