After my abysmal performance/ catastrophe at Run for Water 24- I ended up unable to walk, let alone run without pain. I knew going in my hamstring hurt, I just didn’t realize that I tore it and then I ran almost 100 miles on it (which didn’t make it any better). I have been more disappointed in myself that I failed to compete to the best of my ability and my body failing me at the most inopportune time, than I am not making the US National Team.
2 ½ months of twice a week sessions. My physical therapist is also an ultra-runner so he gets the emotional toll of not being able to run. He told me I could swim and hike, so I spent hours doing both. I also was religious about doing all of my exercises EVERYDAY, sometimes 2x a day because I was desperate to get back to running. The 25 minutes of hands on myofascial release and deep tissue work was extremely painful, but so worth it in the end.
- Swimming: 1 Mile of swimming = 64 lengths of the pool. There is something SO ZEN about focusing on number of the lap you are on and nothing else. It was hard, but I spent a lot of time in the pool and worked my way up to 3 whole miles (that’s longer than you have to swim for an Ironman
- Biking: Meh- I still don’t like biking. But its good for reading*
- Treadmill Hiking: The gym treadmills go up to 30% incline- but I usually stay around 20-25% depending on how I feel. Hours spent catching up on Netflix #2birdsonestone
- Stair Climbing: I climbed until my legs wobbled like spaghetti under me. I got a head start on training for Grindstone 100.
- Personal Training: I was given a package of personal training sessions. She helped me see that strength training isn’t evil. I have been very lackadaisical about strength training, frankly, I would rather run. I think she made it her mission to make me sore (she did!!!!) BUT, I learned a lot and now I do something 2-3 times a week. Having a squat rack in the basement helps.
Sasquatch 50k and Portland:
I was going to be in Oregon the same weekend as my cousins first 50K- DESTINY! I had to run this race and share the experience with her. I got clearance 2 days before Sasquatch 50k to run, as long as I took it easy. There was a lot of climbing in this race (9,531ft over 33 miles) – so I wasn’t worried since ALL I was allowed to do was climb the past few months. The mountains of Oregon are beautiful.
No Hammy pain, but my quads were so unbelievably dead the next few days. They buckled repeatedly as I was trying to run around Portland at 4am- but me being stubborn, I wasn’t going to waste all this potential training time. When I travel, I stay on East coast time as much as possible, meaning I was up at 4am and my conference didn’t start till 9AM. Pam came and picked me up one morning to do a run in Forest Park- which has beautiful single track- I even got back in time to go to all of the sessions that day! This week was my first solid training week with 115 miles since early March.
Ran it with Janet: 4:25; 1st Female with a NEW CR, 2nd OA
I purposely didn’t tell my PT I was running this race. What he didn’t know- wouldn’t hurt him. PLUS- I was planning on taking a conservative approach because I didn’t taper. My goal was to finish around 5 hours and keep a 9mm pace while WALKING all of the hills.
When the race started another female sprinted past me- I tried to tell myself “Don’t be stupid, you have done ZERO speed work” but my competitive side got the better of me and my “easy” race plan was thrown out the window. We were running 8:30mm when the entire front group got off course for about 7-8 minutes. When I realized our error, I turned around and started running hill after hill with reckless abandon. I was determined to be out of sight (and out of mind) if at all possible. I slowed a bit on the second loop and walked a few hills. Close to the starting the 3rd loop, Mike, who I was running with the entire time up to that point mentioned I was close to CR pace, I started doing Run math in my head (which is rarely an accurate way of thinking) and decided that I needed to pick up the pace in order to get the CR. Its been a while since I ran a consistent 7:30 pace- but MAN did it feel good. It was like I was at mile 90/100 Miler and my legs still worked.
When I finished the RD asked me if I saw my Physical Therapist. He was out hiking on the course and I must have just missed him. However, she tattled on me: “She’s running fast and winning!” OOPS- maybe I should have mentioned this adventure to him.
In the three weeks leading up to Mohican 100 all of my runs were done in long pants and multiple layers on top, either on the treadmill or outside (whichever environment was warmer) with NO water followed by up to an hour in the sauna. Then I waited an hour after the sauna to drink any substantial liquids. Not going to lie- this sucked. It was the worst. I also wore my heart rate monitor for most of these runs- I needed to make sure I could keep my heart rate in the proper zones and if it started to elevate, I practiced “zen”ing myself back to where it needed to be. I also got some weird looks on the treadmill- but I didn’t care- this really helped prepare me for the 95 degree heat and humidity at Mohican 100.
Book: Rising Strong- Brene Brown
Brene Brown is someone I admire and respect. Her work on shame and vulnerability is top notch. Injury is demoralizing and there was a lot that I had to deal with emotionally as well as physically this spring to be able to come to terms, accept, and rise strong. I’m fiercely independent (to a fault) and my current life motto is, “I’m stubborn as hell and I do what I want”. I’m thankful for the people in my life who where there for me (and didn’t judge) when I reached out for help and support- because Ive learned the hard way going it alone is never the better option.