Tuesday, December 21, 2010

2011


I have been giving a bit of thought to what I want to accomplish in my running for 2011 and it's real simple.

Must haves
Run for at least 12 hours at FANS (finish healthy is a must)
Finish the Afton 50k (enter healthy is a must)
Finish the Superior 50 (enter and finish healthy is a must)

Planning on
Running some marathons
Volunteering at a few events
Another Turtle Trot
Running some 5k's, 8k's and/or 10k's with the family
Running Surf the Murph 50
Gobble Gait 8k

Thinking about
Potawatomi 50
Chippewa 50k
Twin Cities Marathon

Nice to haves
Add a few more states to my 50 state quest

That's it. For now :-)

Saturday, December 18, 2010

A great running song

I was listening to the new Running to Disney podcast now renamed and branded "This Running Life" and the opening song caught my attention. I could have sworn it was from Creed or someone like that but it turns out it is from a band named "2 Sided Story" and I had never heard it before, so much for my song memory. If you get a chance check out Gordon's new blog and podcast, his story is pretty amazing, started running a few years ago, turned vegan, lost 90 pounds and just finished a 3:48 marathon taking almost 2 hours off his previous marathon best.

He was also just on the The Runners Roundbable

with the woman who encouraged and coached him and I am pretty sure taught him a lot about the vegan lifestyle. Her name is Megan and she too has a podcast and blog, it is called Run Vegan Run.

Listening to their podcast on the roundtable has me thinking yet again about the vegan lifestyle, here is a link to roundtable blog where you can find that episode - RRT 109: Vegan Running. Also a few weeks back they had an episode on Nutrition with Nancy Clark (she has written many books on nutrition for athletes), give that episode a listen to, it is episode 107.

And here is the song:

Find more artists like 2 Sided Story at Myspace Music


I captured some of the lyrics (I think I got them mostly right),

Breaking free from the chains of disparity
I now see with clarity
Things will change and my life's rearranging and I don't need your empathy
I push back when my back is to the wall
Wise up when I start to fall
Reach out when I want to scream about can somebody help me

I knell down when I have to pray, I keep trying every day
Cuz through it all I tell myself I can go all the way
It is what I have to do, don't matter win or lose
Don't care what the hell they say it's my life anyway

I'll rise above the rest , cuz in the end I gave it all to break this claim
Cuz this is my life, cuz this is my life

Seem's so complicated so frustrating to find the strength
To move on through my life story to the glory and
Chase with each step what I am made for

I push back when my back is to the wall
Wise up when I start to fall
Reach out when I want to scream about can somebody help me

I knell down when I have to pray, I keep trying every day
Cuz through it all I tell myself I can go all the way
It is what I have to do, don't matter win or lose
Don't care what the hell they say it's my life anyway

I'll rise above the rest , cuz in the end I gave it all to break this claim
Cuz this is my life, cuz this is my life

Oh yeah, yeah, I got to find a way
Never gonna back away
I control my fate
I won't be afraid
I will fight to be
A better part of me
It's time I change my life
It is what I have to do, don't matter win or lose
Don't care what the hell they say it's my life anyway

I'll rise above the rest, cuz in the end I gave it all to break this claim
Cuz this is my life, cuz this is my life, this is my life............................

Friday, December 17, 2010

2010 Goals Review

Well, it's that time of year again, time to take that retrospective look back and say what worked and what didn't for this year.I am thinking that I will probably do 2 or 3 posts on this subject and this is the first one and it's on my:
Goals Review
  1. Run 1500 miles
  2. Improve December mileage
  3. Stay Healthy
  4. Complete and TCM
  5. Add 3 states and/or run 3 50 milers
  6. Run a race on the Superior trail
  7. Improved core and fitness
Well, the month is not over but it is safe to say that on every goal I pretty much swung and missed. I am not used to this much failure in achieving my goals, so right now I am more than a little humbled at how poorly I did.

Here's the rest of the story.
  1. Run 1500 miles - I was on track for 1800 going into August, the Superior 50 injuries ended any chance of that. Right now, it's only looking like ~1300 miles. My lowest total since 2007 but it still might be my 3rd highest mileage for any year which means I haven't had too many really good years. Here are my monthly mile posts for 2010.
  2. Improve December mileage - I thought this was a no brainer, then the injury from Superior took out September, October and November. As December started I had hopes of ramping up my mileage but two things happened, the ankle wasn't ready at the start of the month and now that it's feeling better (at least I hope it is), how do I say snow lots and lots of snow, most recently 20+ inches of snow have made running problematic. It does work for snowshoe running which can be a lot of fun and a really good workout. Although to be fair to myself, I am actually on track to beat last December's mileage (59) by 10 or 15 miles and I should be above my career average mileage (62.9 miles) for December as well.
  3. Stay Healthy - I sustained a slight injury at McNaughton that almost caused me to drop but I was able to kind of work through it and it had no known long term affect. I was in the medical tent at FANS for 2 hours with hypothermia and a really sore back. The back then caused me to drop at Afton at the 25k mark and then you have the Superior 50. I rolled the ankle a few miles in, ran and hobbled for another 25 miles and ultimately missed the cutoff. During that race I torqued a calf muscle which tore the week after which took my mind off the ankle for a month, then the calf started getting better but then I noticed that the ankle was bugging me, which then continued for another two. So 12+ weeks removed, I think I can, I think I can, I think I can run with almost no pain.
  4. Complete Afton 50k and TCM. See number 3 for Afton where I DNF'd and I didn't complete TCM as it was a DNS. I reluctantly made the decision to not show up as I could barely walk so I guess I should cut myself some slack for that one.
  5. Add 3 states and/or run 3 50 milers - Got a little closer on this one, added Nebraska and Illinois. Signed up for 3 50's only completed McNaughton, 42+ miles at FANs and only 27 miles at Superior.
  6. Run a race on the Superior trail - Hey I did this one, at least I ran part of a race on the trail.
  7. Improved core and fitness - Good concept and after the back issue at FANs, I did work on it for a month or two but all in all, I might have missed this goal the most.
So do you want to guess what my 2011 goals are? It really shouldn't be too hard. Check out my goals tab and see if you got it right.

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Back to Back Marathons in 2012?

Well, believe it or not I haven't forgotten my 50 state goal nor my goal of running back to back marathons on consecutive days. Although lately it seems like I have, anyway, I was listening to a podcast the other day and the show was on running back to back marathons and he ran them in states I have not done.

The marathons are the New Hampshire and Maine Marathons, run this year on October 2nd and 3rd respectively. They are only a 100 miles apart so race logistics would real easy to coordinate.

When I looked up these marathons, I started to look for some other ones the weekend before and after and I found that marathonguide.com

has an nice interactive map, it's useful for finding marathons in say a given month, you just zoom in the region you are interested in, get the race name and start connecting the races together.

As an example, using it I discovered another option out on the the east coast would be the Hartford (Connecticut) and Amica (Newport, Rhode Island) Marathons, run next year on October 15th and 16th respectively. I should point out thought that the Hartford event was run on 10/9th this year so I will need to confirm the two in for 2012

And if I don't like that one or the dates don't work in future years, here is yet another option out on the the east coast, Baltimore (MD) and Atlantic City (NJ) , run next year on 10/15th and 10/16th respectively.

So I am marking my calendar for say maybe 2012, when we can take a nice scenic drive or flight over to the east coast to run a few races. I think for now, I will use the map to find a few more options for those back to back weekends and then maybe I will get lucky and logistics will work out for this year but I am not counting on it until the fall of 2012.

I haven't really worked yet on my race calendar for next year but it's safe to say that I will be having a rematch with a few courses who pretty much won this year. I do know that I am already looking forward to another date with the Superior 50.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

Contrasting Worlds

Last Saturday, Wayne, Karen and I were the first ones to snowshoe through fresh snow in Lebanon Hills. It was a harder than I expected but heck I am pretty much a slug now anyway after 12 weeks of occasional running. A picture from the trail.

And then on Monday here was a picture from the trail.

And here was my trail

I was in Hollywood, Florida attending a conference for my boss, not a bad place to be sent. Here was the view from the convention center deck.

And here are a few more pictures to think about.


And then on Thursday, I ran with Wayne in Lebanon Hills and the trail looked like this.
Actually it's a picture from last year but then again, can you really tell the difference.

And then today, well I think the best way to describe today is that it's a great day to cross train. Right now they are saying we going are to get between 12 and 18 inches of snow, with wind gusts of 40 mph and if that doesn't pique your interest, here is our 5 forecast.

Kind of makes you want to consider moving to Minnesota, you betcha!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

5-Day Forecast
Saturday Sunday Monday Tuesday Wednesday
Snow
20° F | -8° F
Partly Cloudy
4° F | -13° F
Partly Cloudy
0° F | -13° F
Partly Cloudy
7° F | -1° F
Chance of Snow
18° F | 11° F
Snow
100% chance of precipitation
Partly Cloudy Partly Cloudy Partly Cloudy Chance of Snow
30% chance of precipitation



Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Thanksgiving & Pederson Run?

I debated posting this one but I decided that although it is more personal than I am normally comfortable posting, it would be ok to do so.

Thanksgiving Day featured a family run, my wife, my daughters, a boyfriend and I all went over to Hastings and participated in the Gobbler Gait. It was the first time in probably 13+ years that all of my family had participated in a run (I should probably note that 13+ years ago we probably didn't give the girls a choice which is why they did it :-) and it was the first time we had done the Hastings event. My youngest daughter ran the 8k course the fastest, my wife and I ran together and my oldest daughter and her boyfriend walked the course. Although the weather was quite cold (~5 to 10F), we had a blast and it is a nice course, with easy logistics and an overall fun event. We plan to make it a new Thanksgiving tradition.

After the race we got together with friends, we have done this for the last 23 years, and yes, it has been a great tradition. We originally started doing it when we all decided to stay in MN for Thanksgiving versus driving 4 to 12 hours to visit family. It has led to a very nice calm, pleasant and stress free Thanksgiving day. I know my wife and family consider ourselves lucky and blessed to have such a nice tradition.

After Thanksgiving, I was planning on getting some things done and then heading to Afton on Saturday for the Pederson Benefit run. I registered on Friday but let Alicia know that I was iffy as my ankle didn't really do well during or after the 8k. So I had pretty much decided to not meet Wayne and Karen to run a loop but instead was debating heading up later to take in the auction and visit with them and others. I know that I am not a social person by nature and as an injured runner I am even more non-social. For whatever reason though I didn't feel like I should go and I wasn't sure why as I like all the ultra/trail runners I have met and had really planned on going.

As it turns out, it was a good choice, my wife received a call from our youngest daughter that she was having chest pains, for the record she is 17. Not a call a parent expects. We drove over to pick her up from work and to figure out what was up. When we got there, she said she had chest pains and then had kind of passed out, gotten light headed or something when she went to talk to her boss. So we drove her to urgent care but decided maybe the emergency room would be a better choice. They quickly hooked her up to an EKG machine and got preliminary readings that all seemed normal. With the triage complete, we waited for a while (a long while) before they called us back for additional testing. They again hooked her up to an EKG, the Doctor came in, and asked my daughter about the pain and then he asked my wife a few more questions on family history.

One of the questions caused him to be a bit more concerned as my wife told him that she has antiphospholipid-syndrome, it is a blood clotting issue that we (along with our Dr's) believe caused us to have a still birth during our second pregnancy (at 25 weeks) and then made for a pretty complex pregnancy for our youngest. For that pregnancy my wife had to inject herself with heparin 3 times a day, she was tested weekly to make sure her blood was at the right clotting level, we went from the right level to unexpected nose bleeds (not enough clotting) to the wrong level (to much clotting), repeat cycle again and again, she had a fairly large hematoma from an injection, a whole lot of stress and a lot of Doctors, suffice it to say when our youngest was born, we called her our miracle baby for a reason.

Back to the hospital, when he heard that, he paused and asked had she been tested? We said no and he said, he would do a chest x-ray and then he left, then he came right back in and said he wanted to do a cat scan instead to make sure that there wasn't a blood clot. So we went through the test and all turned out clear. He then said he was comfortable that she had pleurisy and that she would be fine in a few more days. So our 5 hour adventure came to a happy conclusion.

I know I was sure happy that I hadn't gone out to the Pederson running event and although it was a long afternoon at the hospital everything we experienced sure helped me appreciate the right things (faith, family and friends) to be thankful for. I hope everyone had a great thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Convergence

I like it when things come together in such a way that even I can't ignore them. On Tuesday, four things happened that should help me to start working towards a new goal. What were the items?
  1. Work wasn't fun, I needed a run to relieve stress but I didn't feel like running on the ankle
  2. Diet, eating, weight, lack of normal exercise and stress release, all point to the fact that I need to change something
  3. My wife points out that I need to get over it, accept that I am injured and do something else
  4. Email from Wayne about what defines an ultrarunner from the ultralist
someone asked this on the ULTRA list and here's part of one person's answer:
------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------
I think that a true ultrarunner is not necessarily one who has run
an ultra once
or twice and decided that was it, but rather someone who
continues to return
time after time and in the face of adversity (maybe it's
a string of DNFs, doubts
of others, doubts of oneself, etc.).

An
ultrarunner is a stubbourn beast, for better or for worse :)
----------------------------------------------------------------------------

So what does it all mean, it means that I have to admit (at least to myself), that I may occasionally be a little stubborn and yes, I have had a couple of DNF's with a bit of some self doubt thrown in but I am not sure any of that makes me an ultrarunner.

I have tried to run through the ankle injury for almost 3 months and it isn't yet healthy so maybe I need to evaluate my approach. By trying to run through it and not cross training and/or modifying my diet, my weight has crept up and my frustration has grown. So starting today, I am going to work on another new plan.

So here it is -

Go forward strategy
1. Define the diet and follow it
2. Develop a cross training plan and start to cross train immediately
3. Accept that you are not just a trail runner or a runner
4. I should post about my future plans and occasionally provide updates on my progress

With regards to cross training, I am notoriously bad but I have options. From home, I can ride a stationary bike, free weights, dust off the old XC ski machine, stair stepper or even do incline walking on our treadmill. At work, we have elliptical trainers, bikes, weights and probably more options. All I need to do is map out the plan and then of course follow it.

So how do I mix in a running goal, real simple. Assume that I will need until Christmas for my ankle to be healthy. So with that in mind, I will pick my next race goal with enough time to train to become a runner again. Again, I should create a plan to get there. I would like to go for Potawatomi 50 down in Illinois on Sat 4/9th, that would mean get up to 50 mile distance in 15 weeks, not sure that makes sense but it isn't impossible it would just take some focus and a little luck. Option 2 would be Chippewa on April 23rd, 17 weeks to a 50k, much more reasonable, of course doing both could work too.

Time to start working on the plans.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

A Wintery-Fall day

I love running on days like today, ~30F with freezing rain. Although, since I didn't have it today as a runner, I stopped often and took a few pictures with my phone (sorry about the quality), there is nothing like Lebanon Hills on a day like today. It's why I love my trails, my body wasn't into the run but my mind took it all in and I felt peace and enjoyed the beauty of nature.

A few screws in the shoes provide some traction


Some sections were snow covered

Some sections were clear

Some were a little of both

The water is still moving in the creeks


Looking back across Jensen lake on the return

The bridges were tricky, icy and awkward footing

Soon winter will overtake Lebanon Hills and we will enjoy our fourth season of the year. For today though, I got to enjoy a reprieve and I have to admit it does my heart and mind good to still see the ground in late November.

Friday, November 19, 2010

Update?

I figured I would provide another injury update as I am still working my way through it. I do think it is slowly getting better (and I do mean slowly, very slowly).

A couple of things I think are note worthy, granted I am self absorbed about it but I think that is normal for runners. The injury is still tender when I run and I have found it is tender to the touch. I have only been running a few days a week so my mileage is low, part of that is the ankle, part of it is the weather, work and all those other things that I let get in my way.

When I originally hurt the ankle, I had a hard time figuring out where it was injured. After the last doctor's visit, he showed me exactly where it was injured and he said it would take at least 3 months to heal. It's always nice to know where you are hurt and to have an idea of what is the normal time frame for recovery.

Here is a picture from wikipedia of the medial ligament where I have tried to point out the area I have pain.
I have tried to do research about this type of injury, there doesn't seem to be a lot of information out there but here is what I have found.

What is a deltoid ligament sprain?

The deltoid ligament is on the inside of the ankle and provides support to prevent the ankle over pronating. It is rare for the deltoid ligament to be sprained as the fibula bone tends to prevent the ankle from moving far enough to sprain or over stretch the ligament. A deltoid ligament sprain is often associated with a fracture of the fibula or other bones in the ankle.

Oh yeah, one other thing:

Medial ligament sprains are treated the same as lateral ligament sprains although recovery can take twice as long.

Just my luck, an unusual injury with twice the recovery but at least the fibula didn't fracture so I just need to look at the positive side of things. It has been almost 10 weeks since Superior so I may just have a few more weeks before it is healed up, yes, just a few more weeks.

An interesting thing about it, a couple weeks back as my wife and I sat in church, I got to thinking about where he said it was injured. So I started grabbing, poking and pushing around on my ankle to see if I could find a hot spot. Initially, I had no luck, so I switched to poke around the other ankle and it pretty much felt the same, no real issues. I of course thought, am I imagining this when I run, maybe it's actually healed. So I switched legs again and poked one more time at the injured ankle where I thought he had poked me. All I can say is I found the spot as I almost jumped out of my chair from the pain I had induced. I of course continued to rub at it thinking maybe a friction massage would help. Then I thought, maybe my other ankle would be just as sensitive if I just hit the right spot (kind of like a funny bone or another way of saying I was still imagining it). So I switched back, no hot spot, so it wasn't in my head. I poked a bit more during the sermon (ok, I admit it, maybe I should have been listening a little better), anyway after church the ankle was quite a bit sorer for the rest of the evening and into the next day. So my thinking was that the friction massage did some good.

So on Wednesday we went to church again and I was kind of zoning out, and then I thought, I wonder if the ankle is any better. So I repeated the sequence and I had the same success, after church it was still throbbing. Not painful per se, just a mild throbbing that I didn't have before church. So I guess it's really not in my head.

On Thursday, I ran with Wayne and Karen in Lebanon Hills, it was nice to run with them again, I got to hear about Karen's recent 100 down in Oklahoma and the support she got from Wayne, her race report should be interesting, actually so would Wayne's if he would ever get around to doing them again. The ankle held up mostly although today it was sore again.

I am working on doing the exercises that my doctor told me to do. I was asked to stand on one leg, then raise up on my toes and repeat it with my eyes closed. I don't know about you all but I can barely do this on my good ankle. The injured one just kind of wobbles and hurts when I move to the toes so if nothing else I have some very basic things I obviously need to work on. I am also pretty sure that I know what I need for Christmas, either a wobble board or that bozu ball thing as I do need to get this all worked out and improve the leg balance and strength.

So hopefully in just a few more weeks I will be able to post that I am back to running pain free.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Go figure

Last Saturday, we change time, marking the start of having darkness on the drive to work and from work.

Last Sunday, ran in Lebanon Hills, 63F, saw a snake, last one of the year?

Last Tuesday, beautiful day, 66F and sunny, didn't run, ankle and darkness were my excuse, should have run anyway, you never know when winter will descend.

Last Thursday, planned on running, 50F, didn't run because of work and the ankle :-(, or was it simply misplaced priorities?

Yesterday, ran 3 miles, 42F, ankle was still sore but I ran in shorts :-), but was it for the last time this year?

Today, 10+ inches of snow, winter blues officially begin, what else can I say but it's Minnesota.................

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

Marathon & Beyond - Minnesota Marathons

This months issue of Marathon and Beyond has a nice article called "The Marathons of Minnesota" and they have a link to a pdf of the article so feel free to check it out.

For those that aren't sure how many marathons we have, it appears to be 12, the article got all of the ones I am aware of, feel free to check out each of their websites:

1. Zoom! Yah! Yah! Indoor Marathon - Jan 9th, 2011 - Northfield, MN
- it's run indoors at St. Olaf and is limited to 85 runners
2. Zorbaz on Gull Lake Run for the Lakes - Apr 30th, 2011 - Nisswa, MN
3. Lake Wobegon Trail Marathon - May 14th, 2011 - St. Joseph, MN
4. Med-City Marathon - May 29th, 2011 - Rochester, MN
5. Stillwater Marathon - May 29th, 2011 - Stillwater, MN
6. Minneapolis Marathon - June 5th, 2011 - Minneapolis, MN
7. Grandmas Marathon - June 18th, 2011 - Duluth, MN
8. Half Voyageur Trail Marathon - July 16th, 2011 - Carlton, MN
9. Moose Mountain Marathon - Sept. 10th, 2011 - Lutsen, MN
10. Walker North Country Marathon - Sept 17th, 2011 - Walker, MN
11. Medtronic Twin Cities Marathon - Oct. 2nd, 2011 - Minneapolis, MN
12. Mankato Marathon - Oct. 22nd, 2011 - Mankato, MN

I would be remiss to not note that they didn't include our races beyond the marathon distance but that only adds another 5 or so more. Not bad for a state that is pretty much only noted for two of the marathons (Grandmas and Twin Cities). We are indeed lucky to have so many to choose from.

One thing that occurred to me is that it would be a fun goal to run all of them in a single year. The one issue I see is the conflict between Med City and Stillwater since they are on the same day. I wonder if one of the race directors would give me a late start :-). Even if you don't want to run all of them, check out the article (as it provides a good summary on each of them) and then choose a few that look good and enjoy them.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

And so it goes

Ran 4 miles yesterday, can't run today, will see what tomorrow brings.............

And with that here is my quote for this year at least as it relates to my running:

All misfortune is but a stepping stone to fortune.
Henry David Thoreau


What this means is that not everything this year has gone as planned but I have learned a few things that will benefit me next year that is if I can remember those lessons and find solutions.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Eeyore and Tigger - another injury update

My title for this post is easy to explain, for most of my running life. I have approached my running with the boundless energy and excitement of Tigger (Optimist)

However for the last few months (ok, maybe for most of this year), my blog reads more like the thoughts of an Eeyore (Pessimist).


I know it is probably because of the injuries but whether I like it or not, the last few months have been a bummer so you can ignore the rest of this post or read about my latest injury update.

You see, I had a doctor appointment this morning. When my ankle didn't seem to be healing fast enough, late last weekI decided to get a second opinion, granted I waited almost to the end of the week to make sure I could still do Surf the Murph. I went to a Doctor I have gone to in the past, I should have gone to him right away but I really didn't think I had hurt myself bad enough to warrant a visit to any doctor, let alone one who I trust to treat my running injuries.

He took x-rays of the ankle and they came back clean, no fracture showed up of any sort a few pieces are floating about the ankle but nothing that he was too concerned with. He thought one of the chips might be recent but thought it still looked a few years old. He did show me a few issues I have that many other runners would have which of course I can't explain but suffice to say it was cool. Nice to have a doctor who appreciates runners.

As to the ankle, he also diagnosed it as grade 2 sprain and thought I had strained a couple of ligaments. Unlike the other doctor that I went to he was able to rotate the ankle and press on a few spots and cause me pain, fairly significant pain. I felt so much better to know it wasn't in my head. When the other doctor, poked at my ankle without causing me significant pain, I was thinking I was being a wimp. He rotated it and was happy with the stability and then pushed and poked and then he hit the hot spots, he asked me a few more questions about how I did it. He asked if I rotated to the outside or inside, I said I wasn't sure, what I remembered was it rotating in and then reacting and it rotated out. He concurred and said that I had sprained the deltoid ligament and was tender (minor sprain) at the anterior talofibular ligament. He also said 3 months is what it would take before running would be pain free, not 2 months. I did not ask him if I should be running on it (guess who asked me that when I told her about his diagnosis, yes the same person who asked me all of the other questions that I failed to ask, my wife :-). I am not sure what his answer would be so I figure I can do so with care. As to rehabbing it he said, standing on one foot, eyes open and closed, repeat, raise up on toes, repeat, repeat, repeat.

I also asked about my calf muscle and he said he thinks I tore the gastrocnemius, he wasn't so sure about the plantaris tear or rupture but based on where he was able to cause pain figured that I had injured the gastrocnemius, his comment on it was that it would haunt me unless I did a lot of achilles stretches, in case I missed his comment, he repeated achilles stretches a few more times.

So time to cut myself some slack for all the negative thoughts and instead it's time to get working on a rehab training program.

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Surf the Murph

Beautiful day, fun event and it appears no additional damage was done to myself. It was fun to see so many friendly faces. The weather was perfect and the course was in great shape, I liked the changes that Les made, it will be nice to have a simple loop (x3) for the 50 milers to run even though it made for a slightly longer 25k or 50k course.


I took my time, ran when I could, walked when I needed to and enjoyed myself. In looking at my SportTracks info, I was stopped for 18 minutes, most of which was spent at the aid stations talking to the volunteers. I didn't care too much what my time was as I knew I wasn't in race shape or health and I wanted to simply take in the park. There was more than one time where I simply stopped and looked around. I know the snow will be falling soon (I am totally ok with being wrong on this one), so I wanted to have the memories of Murphy packed away for the winter. For me it's always easy to pull out memories and images (of warmth) to help me get through runs during those cold, dark and snow-packed winter days.

A few pictures from the course, all of these were taking with my phone in the southern section.

Just past the horse park


looking back across the lake around mile 7


Just passed the 9 mile aid station

So my thanks to Les, Cindy, Jim, Molly, Lisa, Bill, Londell, Helen and all of the other volunteers and runners (Wayne, Karen, Mark, Kel, Steve, Kelly, Vicky, Mike, Dane and so many more) that I met during the day for another great Surf the Murph event, can't wait until next year when I hope to get back out there for the entire day.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Surf the Murph?

Normally at this time of year I would be focused on the weather forecast for Saturday instead I am at the point of not really caring. I am only planning on participating in the 25k as my ankle and calf will probably not be able to tolerate any more.

From this point on, I am merely documenting my situation as sometimes when I write things down, the answer appears, if it doesn't, well then my bitching and whining at least make me feel better, so feel free to ignore this post as it like most of my other ones is written more for me than anyone else.

Back to Murphy, actually I think the calf might be able to handle the 50k and who knows maybe even 50 miles but the ankle is not where it needs to be and will bug me within a few minutes of the race start. This might be the most frustrating injury I have ever had as it is just sore most of the time. It was more sensitive a few weeks back. So I would like to think it is getting better except today after running Sat/Sun/Mon it is sore again (it was actually sore every day, today it just continued). I say run but my outings were more walks than runs. When I run, it isn't sharp pain, just a constant ache that adds up after a few miles and takes all of my mental energy to push through. Then after an hour (at best) I really can't seem to run through it and I end up having to walk and then run and then walk and so on.

I ran on Saturday with Wayne and Karen in Murphy and I had to walk a lot, they had already run 6 miles before we met up so they may not have noticed it as much as I did but I wasn't happy about it. I did make it almost 9 miles with them, so Saturday won't be an issue to complete but it won't be fun if I try to run it like a race, heck what am I thinking, I am sure I can't even if I want to. So I intend to meander my way through the course and just enjoy myself. I love Murphy and I will enjoy it regardless of the time it takes as who knows this may be my last time there this year without snow, please tell me it isn't suppose to snow soon.

Back to the ankle, I know I have not done the right rehab or even sought timely medical care and evaluation (I am sure my wife and/or Lisa would scold me on this so I figured I would say it up front) but that is because I still don't think I really injured it to where it should be still bugging me. Would you go to the Doctor if you could walk and the swelling was not severe? As a point to my defense when the calf muscle snapped/ruptured and I couldn't walk I went to the Doctor and followed his advice. Of course what does he tell me? He say it's a comfort injury and it was up to me to when I could resume running as I couldn't do any harm to the muscle, so it was just my ability to deal with the pain (yes he did advise me that I should wait 2 weeks but a comfort injury when I can't bear any weight on the leg). I hate being told something is a comfort injury, to me it means I am a wimp if I don't push through it.

I have had a severely sprained ankle that required me to be on crutches and I think I recovered from it faster (actually I have had multiple ones from playing basketball). Yes I did immobilize it but I couldn't walk on it so I didn't have a choice. This injury I ran through at Superior or attempted to, but kind of like now it wore me down to where I couldn't run after 10 miles or so and yes truth be told, I wanted to stop running on it after 4 or 5 miles. The next day, it was a little sore but only really bugged me when I walked up a slight incline. Even that pain seemed minor and I expected it to go away, it almost seems the same today.

With the ankle, I did go and see a Doctor (yes it was four weeks after the injury), she checked it out, did not do X-rays, we discussed doing them but since she couldn't cause me pain by moving or manipulating it, I didn't see any reason to. She did not give me any exercises, I just left, thinking yet another comfort injury. I have looked up exercises and will start doing them, hopefully they will help. So, my guess is that the ankle will be fine in another week or so but I have thought that before and it is now over 6 weeks. I want to run pain free. Ugh. I hate not being able to run this time of year. Enough said.

So I intend to go and have fun this Saturday and after that I will give it more time if needed and go from there.

Sunday, October 24, 2010

Shirts and sweatshirts?

In the past couple of years I have had the distinct privilege or the unfortunate circumstance of DNF'ing in multiple races. I have a DNF'd at the Afton 50k two years in a row and now the Superior 50

Why a privilege? When I have DNF'd it's a reminder that the races I do are not easy and you can't just phone it in by showing up. For shorter races I can do that. My times may not be good but I can get to the finish line.

Why an unfortunate circumstance? Failure sucks and not finishing always feels like a failure even if the reason for the DNF is a good one.

Why did I DNF at these events? At Afton, I started the races injured and made the choice to drop at the 25k point as the injuries were getting worse. Probably the right call but I still have regrets and at times wish I had tried to push through the pain. So my question is it ok to wear the Afton shirts? They are given out at the start not at the finish so I have worn them but I always flinch when I put them on, as I feel I am non deserving.

This year when I was given the sweatshirt at the Superior 50, I felt great to receive one. It was the event I had most wanted to do for the year and my decision to drop at Afton was part so that I could get healthy for this event. When my day fell apart with injuries and I wasn't able to maintain the required pace and missed the cutoff, I felt like a failure. When I look at the sweatshirt I don't feel that I am deserving to wear it and have yet to do so.

Am I wrong with my attitude for either Afton and Superior? Why do I view them differently? i know the answer to that, I knew going into Afton I was injured and I chose to try to run versus not running. So when the pain got intense I allowed myself to drop. I know that part of my thinking has been that I have finished the 50k there so it's ok to acknowledge both failure and success and that by wearing the shirts I am simply advertising the event and my participation in it.

At Superior, I went into it with a few issues, training and some back pain but it was different than Afton. I was running fine until I rolled my ankle but since I didn't collapse, I simply have viewed the issues that followed as weakness in myself. It's possible that I did well to make it as far as I did but to me I went there with the intent to finish the race and I did not get it done.

So I guess for consistency I should either quit wearing the Afton shirts or I should view the Superior sweatshirt as a participation sweatshirt and feel like I can wear it. Am I the only one who struggles with this?

Regardless, my primary goal for 2011 will be to finish both events.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Future - Admission of who I am?

Some good suggestions and observations were made in my last post. In order for me to rectify my past mistakes and failures, I need to admit how I got here this year. Truth is that is a long story but all I need to do is look back to 2009, I stepped up my training, had an injury, slowed down and then focused only on finishing the Surf the Murph 50. I did finish it but it wasn't easy so I knew I needed to do train differently in 2010, I started to create a plan but ultimately I just tried to run more races as my training plan, I missed many days of running and basically had no plan. My plan was to run Superior, FANS, Afton, McNaughton a couple of marathons and just watch myself improve with all of the miles. Of course I missed running on many days as work or my attitude kept me from executing and on the days I did run, I just meandered my way through them.

The bottom line in 2010 (and yes many other years) is that "Commitment and Purpose" are what I have lacked. I need to change this but obviously I need to figure out something that gets me there so I figured being an engineer I would start to plan my 2011 from an engineering perspective.

My problem is that engineers are trained to solve problems logical and generally we do but some engineers take different approaches to problem solving. Years ago when I worked at Sperry/Unisys I was part of a test engineering organization that had close to 30+ engineers in the group and our admin had us all take a Cosmos personality test to see how we solved problems. I am sure it was done more as a joke than anything serious but the results were insightful. The test categorized your learning style as Logical, Practical, Intuitive and Imaginative. To give you an idea of the problem solving traits of the categories, here was an example given to as an explanation after we took the test.

If you purchased a new bike that needed to be assembled what would be the approach you would take:

Logical - carefully unpack the bike from the box, find the instructions, read them thoroughly from from to back, layout each part, start at step 1 and then follow each subsequent step until reaching the final assembly step.

Practical - unpack the bike from the box, note that there are instructions, reference as needed until assembly is complete.

Intuitive - dump the bike from the box, assemble it, after bike is assembled, note there are instructions and probably a few extra parts and throw them away.

Imaginative - look at the box and then go and sit under a tree and think about how much fun you will be having when you ride your new bike.

Out of the 30+ engineers, we ended up with 1 practical, 2 intuitive, 1 imaginative and the remaining 25+ engineers were logical.

What does this have to do with my training, well I was one of the intuitive types, that means I like to do things by feel, I like to skip steps, I don't follow instructions, I lose interest in following a plan, I take risks, I excel at procrastinating, I try to always find the easy way to do things, I take shortcuts. I also love challenges, problem solving, planning new things and am capable of analyzing new situations with not a whole lot of info.

For me to create a plan that I commit to that has a purpose goes against my nature. That said, I did follow a plan for my first marathon. Ok, I should be honest and say that even with the first plan, I wasn't too good on those midweek longer runs, speed workouts or hill workouts after the first few weeks but other than those issues, I followed the plan. After that race, I would make my plans and I usually will get in the mileage just not those specific workouts that were in the plan so quite adding them to a plan. So you see, I can follow general plans, you know the ones that say I need to run 20 miles this weekend with maybe a few midweek runs. I will do that but nothing else that is unless I feel like doing them. I do love spending time creating plans and schedules, I just am not good at execution. Truth is at work I am much better at strategic thinking than tactical implementation. At work though I can hire folks that are good at what I am not, hard to do that with my running.

Ok my self examination is over, now I need to think through my faults, issues and obstacles and then figure out what I am going to do next year to mitigate them or probably said more correctly, compensate for them.

Any ideas?

Friday, October 15, 2010

Future?

My latest injuries have caused me to step back and say what am I doing, how did I get here, what is my new plan?

Last year, I tried to run through an injury until I crashed at Afton, I took a few weeks off to heal up, then trained slowly and carefully towards running my first 50 at Surf the Murph. I succeeded at STM but my training was designed to complete the event, not to race it. It worked but this year I wanted to race at Surf the Murph and I have failed as I will be luck to make the starting line. What went wrong? Well a few things come to mind, inadequate training, no cross training and a bit of bad luck.

So what am I going to do? Good question, normally I would map out a plan or said correctly some great intentions. I would follow it for a day or two and then work or life or my self defense sabotage system would engage and then I would go off plan. I would think I had time to get back to it and then I would sign up for a race that would force me to ramp up my training, I would get to the start line and finish but wouldn't take the time to train properly.

You want an example of this, well 2010 supplies it, I drifted all winter after STM with no plan or goal other than Chippewa, this meant I barely ran in November. In December. Chippewa gets canceled so my motivation goes as winter descended, no reason to run, right? I drift into January and then in February I sign up for McNaughton. Instant accelerated ramp of mileage. I hit the start line in just good enough shape to run the event. I suffer some dehydration, strain a calf/achilles and endure for 15+ hours but finish. I was probably lucky that I didn't do any damage by walking/running on the calf for 20+ miles.

I regroup a bit in May and run a couple of marathons with my wife, those weren't too bad, actually maybe some decent training if only I had added some cross training my summer might have turned out different. I go into FANs feeling confident but have back issues and end up only running for 10 hours ultimately being pulled for hypothermia. I go into Afton knowing that the back will become painful within 5 miles and it flares right on cue and I drop at the halfway point. I then reset myself and go and get some physical therapy, start the strengthening and cross training only to abandon it as I have to ramp my mileage for Superior. Which gets me to the start line with just enough base to think I can go 50 miles. I roll an ankle which leads to straining my calf, add in my insufficient base and I don't make the first cut-off. I thought at the time that if I had had a stronger base I would have made the cut off. That said, in looking back over the last five weeks, my calf took weeks to get to where I could walk let alone run but the ankle is still an issue so maybe I wouldn't have made it even if I had a better base and instead am lucky or was dumb to go as far as I went.

Anyway, where does this self exam leave me?

It means that I have work to do this fall/winter if 2011 is going to turn out differently otherwise I am sure I will repeat it again. So time to look inward and decide where I want to be next year and what am I going to change to get there.

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Yet another medical update

Well, another Dr visit, where she confirmed what I thought but didn't really understand, I have a sprained ankle and it will be another 2 to 4 weeks before all things are back to where they should be.

The reason I didn't understand it, is because I really didn't have that much swelling and with the calf shutting me down completely, I thought I was resting but I guess the sprain was a bit more severe than I thought. She told me that the type of injury I have could normally take 4 to 6 weeks and up to 8 weeks. The fact that I ran 20+ miles on it combined with not icing for a day may have put the recovery out longer. My theory is that by continuing to run on it, it kept the swelling down, might not be true but it works for me. My theory would make more sense if the pain was gone now that it has been 4 weeks.

So my plan is still to participate at Surf the Murph (the 25k), notice I say participate as it might be a walk through the park versus a training run or a race but it will beat sitting at home wallowed in self pity lamenting my disappointing fall season. If it wasn't for winter following fall, fall would be my favorite time of the year to run. I love the cooler temps, the beauty of the fall season, snakes disappearing, the normally great trail conditions. Suffice to say, it has been hard to not be able to run.

Anyway, I will give it a few more days and do some cross training and try to run again this weekend and then go from there.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Some good news and some not so good news

The good news is my calf is getting better and I was able to get some runs in. The bad news is the ankle seems worse and my runs barely felt my description of running. I ran/walked/hobbled 3 miles on Friday, 6 yesterday and 3 today.

On Friday, the ankle was tender probably best described as a little sore and bugged me trying to run uphills as did the calf so I walked the inclines. The ankle is weird to me as it has been sore since Superior but it didn't really swell up or bruise much. It feels stiff and hurts when my foot flexes and on landing. Some more good news, I did discover another place to run, I ran along nine mile creek in Bloomington, it looks like you can get in around 5 miles on this trail but it looks like I might be to pick up the river bottoms (flooded out right now) in the future. I started along 106th street and since it's on my way home, it is an alternative for a short run.

On Saturday, I decided to go over to Lebanon Hills and I felt ok for the first couple of miles, the ankle again was tender with every step and subsequent push off causing a flinch, the calf seemed fine, after 2 miles I hit a couple hills and the calf and ankle agreed that I should walk these. The ankle seemed more bothersome, again no strength to push off and pain on each step. I tried to pick it back up over the last 2 miles and I picked up the pace but I more or less just pushed through the pain. I am starting to beat myself up a lot less than I was as I now know why I had issues with my pace at Superior. My calf and ankle just don't allow me to run.

Today, I went back to Lebanon hoping I could work through the ankle, I could not and ended up quitting after hobbling on it for 3 miles. My calf felt good though, so I am happy about that.

So, not sure what this means, but I think I will need to get the ice back out and take it day by day.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

He's back

This time the title sums it up, I went for a run, two runs actually, well kind of, sort of, more on that later.

First, for those that ran the Twin Cities Marathon what an absolutely perfect day to run a marathon. I debated coming out to watch but just wasn't up for it. I hate it when I can't run and this was only the second marathon that I did not make it to the starting line and yes, the other time was due to injury as well. I wanted to run it but if I had started it, I would have DNF which maybe I should have had but I would have been miserable around all of those cheery runners knowing the pain that would await me and the likely hood of not being able to finish it.

Back to my weekend, I did however get in a couple of runs which is great news, the first one came Saturday and it marked my first run since Superior. Now I am being generous to call it a run. I wasn't sure I could run so I rode my bike to Lebanon Hills, about 5 miles or so, I figured it would be exercise at least. Then I tried to run, it didn't go so good but it wasn't a disaster. I had pain but it wasn't sharp pain more of a constant strong ache with an occasional sharp twinge. It felt like the calf was cramping and each step caused pain but it wasn't unbearable, now the thought of running 26.2 wasn't too thrilling. I actually did have thoughts that if the run went ok that I would go pick up my packet and go for TCM, that thought left me fairly quickly. I debated making this next comment but since the goal of this blog is for me to look back now and again and remember things I would forget, I felt I should even if I don't like the info but I am sure my wife will smile about it. The pain I had on this run was very close to the pain I had at Superior, so I guess it is possible I did injure it up there. Anyway, I had hoped that I could run around Jensen Lake but decided after a 1/2 mile to turn around so my first run was just a mile. My pace was slow as I had to walk all uphills and when the calf cramped/tightened up which was more often that I would have like. I then biked home so 11 miles of biking and 1 mile of kind of running. I do have to admit, even with the pain, I loved being back in Lebanon Hills.

Today, I woke up a bit sore so I figured I would take the day off. As the day unfolded, I kept looking outside thinking how much I love to run in the fall and that I should go for it, no, I told myself give yourself another day or two. A few hours later, I couldn't take it and I headed over to Lebanon Hills, I decided to wrap up the calf to maybe take some of the tension off. It was an absolutely beautiful fall day and as I ran I had a constant ache but no significant sharp pain and I thought maybe I should just push through it so I made the decision to just keep going. After a mile, I thought I would just loop around Jensen then I came to the decision left or right and I went right. After another mile, I figured I better head back as the calf was tightening up and getting a little bit more bothersome. I again walked the hills and around every 1/4 mile or so I walked. I did not bring my watch so I don't know how slow the pace was but I know it was slow. My running style was kind of a hobble as opposed to something that resembled running but I was moving and in the park.

So now the plan is to ease back into running and you know what I will enjoy each and every run.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

Frustration

TCM is out, can't run, shouldn't start. Surf the Murph's entry fee goes up today, do I sign up or not? I only have 29 days to get back into running shape of any sort and to hit the start line. So the 50 miler is out, 50k is doubtful, 25k is a maybe, volunteering I can do. So I emailed Les and Cindy on Sunday to see if they need another volunteer otherwise maybe I go for the 25k.

And on that note, I thought I would be running by now but I am not ready. I am walking pretty good but the calf still is bothersome on uneven surfaces and when it gets flexed, trails would be troublesome. Tonight, I tried to get on the treadmill, had issues as soon as I hit 4 mph, not good. Thought about trying to just push through it, then I thought again and decided to wait another day or two.

I may still try to go for Surf the Murph but if I do I will just pay the extra entry fee and if I am running in the next week, I think I would be quite happy to do so.

Amended Post - Kel left me a comment and I followed her advice, I am now signed up for the 25k. It at least gives me something to look forward to.

Otherwise, it may soon be time to move to plan b - fall/winter cross training program.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Plantaris Anatomy

I decided to try and look up some additional info on the plantaris muscle/tendon and found a couple of decent pictures (all my info was extracted from wikipedia). If you can't tell, I am my normal self absorbed self with this injury so feel free to skip this but if you ever wondered about Plantaris anatomy it at least provides a summary in pictures.

The plantaris muscle and a portion of its tendon run between the two larger calf muscles (soleus and gastrocnemius muscle). The Plantaris starts at the knee and runs between the soleus and the gastrocnemius and attaches near the heel.

Plantaris muscle/tendon behind the knee to the heel

In the first picture where I added the arrow is approximately where I felt the original pain when something must have snapped or torn, it is still where I have figured out that it is the most tender to touch and where I feel pain when I move in ways that cause pain. Right now that would be uneven surfaces, inclines and change of direction movements.


Plantaris where it attaches to the heel?


Plantaris location between Soleus and Gastrocnemius

One thing that I haven't chosen to agree with my wife on regarding this injury is the sequence of events that caused it.

Scenario 1 would say that I injured it during the Superior 50 while compensating for a right ankle sprain around mile 2 or 3. I did have left calf pain which started shortly after the ankle roll and it was different than normal and persisted until I missed the cutoff at mile 26.7. I then tore/ruptured it a week later because it was already strained.

Scenario 2 would be no correlation to Superior, merely a coincidence and that I did it by lifting a box out of my car because I am simply getting old. My wife thinks 1, I think 2 but recognize she may be right.

Today, I plan to go for a bike ride and I am debating that maybe this would be a good week to start a car-bike commute to get in some extra exercise. I live 25 miles from work (via car) and a bike commute would be around 28 to 30 miles which on my mt bike might take a bit longer than I could deal with so I am thinking that I might park about midway to work and then bike the rest

Saturday, September 25, 2010

Injury Update

Lots of progress in a week but I am still not where I hoped I would be. My walking is starting to get closer to normal, although I am still limping and can't walk very fast . Certain movements still cause pain and I have been woken up the last couple of nights when I do something that causes pain. So I am thinking running might be a few more days away.

This week, I had hope that I might still run TCM but that may have been unrealistic. My plan was to run 3 miles today, 10 tomorrow, throw in a couple of mid week runs and then run TCM. Today, my reality is that this plan is not possible.

Right now, Surf the Murph doesn't seem too probable either since it is 5 weeks away. I know I will be running by then but to even think about doing the 50 miler would be really, really stupid, the 50k might just be really stupid and the 25k might be doable but still a little stupid. If I rush back from this I might end up with other injuries and I hate not being able to run at this time of year as it is one of the most enjoyable periods we have.

So instead I am thinking, start to cross train right away, get back to running when I can, enjoy the fall with shorter runs or rides. The goal will be to work on getting into a good pattern of running and cross training and then keep at it all winter and hit the spring strong, almost seems like the start of a plan.

Monday, September 20, 2010

And the prognosis is

Turns out that I actually got much better news than I expected. I have an injury of some sort to my plantaris muscle or tendon (could be a tear or a rupture). You might ask, how can that be good news. Well it turns out that the plantaris tendon and muscle serves no purpose or at least not much of a purpose.

Here is what wikipedia has to say about the plantaris muscle:
It is composed of a thin muscle belly and a long thin tendon. It is approximately 2-4 inches long, and is absent in 7 - 10% of the human population. It is one of the plantar flexors in the superior compartment of the leg along with the gastrocnemius, and soleus. The plantaris is considered an unimportant muscle, it mainly acts with gastrocnemius.

Here is some additional info from a site called wisegeek on "what is the plantaris tendon":
Plantaris tendon ruptures occur more often in male athletes, particularly part-time athletes, between 40 and 60 years old.

When the injury occurs, the individual might actually hear or feel the tendon pop and feel an intense, stabbing pain in the calf. Pain accompanying a plantaris tendon rupture is persistent and lies deeper within the calf muscle than if the muscle itself were strained. In some cases, the plantaris tendon and the plantaris muscle have suffered chronic swelling that finally manifests in a rupture, but most of the time, the injury occurs suddenly.
And I was told that I can walk or run based on comfort. When I mentioned TCM in two weeks, my Dr looked at me and said it is a comfort thing. Granted his look was one of subtle perplexity and although I am not planning on running it as of today, if I can start walking normally in a few days, well who knows. At least I have some hope of being ready for the 50k at Surf the Murph. That said, I did just read another article on plantaris muscle injury treatment that wasn't quite as optimistic, it said one should take off 4 weeks before resuming running so I guess I will ponder things as I start to improve.

So as of today, I will simply continue to do the RICE thing and take it day for day until I am back once again on the trails, hopefully sooner versus later.


Sunday, September 19, 2010

Update

With each set back that we experience we have the opportunity to use it to improve or regress. Last June when I had issues at FANs, I choose to regress although I would have argued otherwise as I more or less ignored the issues and still tried to run at Afton and sure enough I could not work through them. I took this set back as an opportunity to improve and went to the Dr for a diagnosis and assistance. I was making good progress when my work became demanding and I regressed again. Now at the time I again would have argued otherwise as I increased my mileage just enough to give me the hope that I could still take on Superior but I did not work hard enough and I quit working on the other things that I needed to do to make me stronger and that led to my failure at Superior. This week as I was processing Superior and letting the ankle improve, I was trying to decide what to do next and I think I was again going to regress further until yesterday.

Yesterday, it appears I was given another opportunity to choose a path that will lead to improvement. Yes, I may have torn a calf muscle (I am still hopeful that maybe my amateur diagnosis is wrong and it is the aftermath of a severe cramp). And yes, I still can't walk normally nor can I straighten the leg or put my heel to the ground at least with any sense of urgency. Suffice to say that yesterday and even this morning I was not a happy camper and I was probably headed towards additional regression as my negative thoughts were flowing. Upon reflection, I am choosing a different path and intend to use this as an opportunity to move forward.

Tomorrow, I will call my Dr with the intent to actually follow his advice. TCM is out and Surf the Murph will depend on what the Dr. tells me. The good news is that I just tried to peddle our exercise bike and I can do that as long as I don't try to fully straighten the leg. Don't worry, I won't try to use the bike today as my plan is to follow the RICE principal and then see what I can find out tomorrow.

Mentally, I am planning on being shutdown from running at least for a while (a week to a month, hopefully no longer) with the realization that my racing year might be over. If it is then my plan will to be to cross train to maintain mental health, weight and to become stronger. It will be hard to not run but there are many other things I can do if I take this on with a positive attitude and use this as the opportunity it needs to be.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Some days...................

There is an old saying about seeing the light at the end of the tunnel and that you hope it's not an oncoming train. Today, that light turned out to be a train.

First, I will fill you in on my week. My recovery from Superior was not quite progressing the way that I had hoped, the ankle had kept me hobbling most of the week to where my wife and a few co-workers thought I should have gone in to get it looked at. I being me, wanted no part of that, they were concerned that maybe it wasn't a sprain. Anyway, I thought today that my patience was paying off as the ankle was almost normal to at least to where I was planning on trying to run on it. Before I could run, I had to do a few things around the house. One of the tasks was to take old financial papers to the Credit Union as they had offered free shredding. So I loaded up over 15 years of old papers into a couple of tubs and a box and headed out. As I drove up there, I started thinking that maybe my wife and I should run the River Bottoms and if that went well, maybe TCM and Surf the Murph 50 might still be possible.

I got to the credit union and carried over the first tub and dumped it. The guy from the credit union commented on the amount of paper I had brought and I said I had a bit more. So back to the car but the box had overturned and ripped so as I picked it up, I figured I would just dump it into one of the tubs. As I did so, I received an unbelievable pain from my left calf (yes the same calf that bugged me a little at Superior after I hurt the ankle, but I am sure that is a coincidence). It felt like I had been hit with a baseball bat, I thought to myself it's just a cramp. I decided to try and ignore it and finished filling up the tub as I tried to lift it to carry over, I couldn't bear weight on my leg. So I kind of stood there a bit and then tried to stretch it and after a few more minutes, I hobbled over. He commented on my new limp, I explained it to him and I am sure he thought to himself, it must be hell getting old. If he wasn't, I sure as blank was.

So I drove home, almost had to crawl into the house ( I kind of hopped and then did somewhat crawl a bit) and told my wife, I think she wanted to laugh but was concerned. She again suggested the Doctor concept, I again said no, it is just a spasm. So I iced it and then put on my compression socks and will continue to try to stretch it as much as I can. Right now, if I stand, I can't put my left heel on the ground nor can I straighten my leg and pull the foot back towards my knee when I am sitting, so at least I know what I need to work on.

I think it's safe to say, no run today, maybe tomorrow.

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