July 18, 2014

Closer Than the Shirt on Your Back

Well, I didn't fall apart. Or go hide in a cave (though it is tempting at times).
That's the good news!

The bad news is that I am most certainly carrying the double-dominant gene for stubbornness- which can be both a blessing and a curse. 
(If you missed my last post, you might want to catch up there first. I must have hit on something with many readers, because I have been blessed with encouraging and heartfelt comments, G+ comments, tweets and emails ever since. Thank you for every single one of them.)
Update:
My foot is still a little "off", but I have decided that it is tendonitis of some kind or another.

After a few days of rest, I tested it running with 10 minutes. How it feels the following morning is the gauge. If it feels better than the day before, I have the green light to run a little more.

This time, I probably took more time off than I should have... But that brings up a question. How do you know when to rest an injury from running, or whether to continue on? 

I am a tester. 
I need to know how it feels, and if running will make it feel better or worse. If it makes it feel worse I come up with a guess about how many days I should rest it before trying to run again, (which is probably  why my training looks so lame for the last 5 weeks!).

Anyway.. this brings me to my next preponderance...
Have you ever wondered what it would feel like, (or how fast you could run), a marathon off of no training? 
I have! 
(But never badly enough to try it. There is something in the back of my head that says "it would hurt" and" you would do MUCH worse than you think you would.")

A 50k would hurt even worse, though. And I have one paid for in 6 weeks.

So I ran a 20 miler on Tuesday.

It was at the coast, where it was 60F, (not 90F!), that I ran 20 x 1 mile loops around nature's treadmill- the Lake Marie trail.

On the drive I somehow ended up tuning into a sermon on the radio. The speaker brought up a passage from the Bible, making a connection that Jesus is "a friend closer than a brother". In fact, he said, "Jesus is closer to you than the shirt on your back. He's that close."

I thought about my sweaty, clinging tank top.

If Jesus is that close, what do I have to worry about? (Also, faith is made easier if the farthest you have to walk to your car is half a mile!).

I had a lot of unknowns about making that run: Whether I would run the whole 20, or stop short, whether I should be running at all. Maybe you are reading this thinking I am an absolute idiot for trying to run that far on an iffy foot. Then again, maybe you have been in my shoes.

For me, 20 miles gives me a certain confidence I need for my 50k- confidence I hope I can repeat in another long trail run. I have a limited window if I am going to run MRTR.

  • My Garmin died at lap 8. I expected it and had a system for recording my mileage in place from the beginning.
  • My music died at mile 10 when Pandora ate up the remaining data I had on my phone.
  • My foot gave me some grief, but held up pretty well overall.
  • My opposite hip reminded me that it was in collaboration with my foot. ☺ Both were remarkably unshaken by the ordeal, and I am taking things low key for a bit. But I don't plan to see my running mileage stay this way, if it can be helped.


 Feet felt pretty good considering the abuse. I rotated shoes 4 times on this run, just to be safe! ;)
Altra Intuition 1.5 work OK on a sandy/ fir needle trail.

It's another imperfect training cycle for me. And I can laugh about it at the moment, because I still have some time, and I am running again!
Enjoying a frolic in the lake after placing 20 rocks on the car. 
(Pic via cheapo phone and timer)


******

Just a putting a bug in your ear...
If you happen to be in the Portland, OR area , please consider participating in the Ladybug Run! 
A good friend, and fellow runner, directs this race as a fundraiser for CDH awareness.
 It is a FANTASTIC event. 
There will be great prizes, and lots of fun for kids! 
 Check it out!


22 comments:

  1. I'm the same way about injuries. I always want to test them out and see how they feel. How did your body feel the days after the 20? Glad to see you up and running! :)

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    1. Thanks E! I was a bit banged up, but could stand on my foot without pain the next day.. running is just going to be at a reduced level from what I had originally planned. ☺

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  2. Glad that your run went well and you still have no pain the next day. I hope that you can start getting a few more good runs in before your race.

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    1. Thanks David! It was a hard run, for sure, but so glad to have it in the barn!

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  3. Good to hear that you're running again and feeling better! I've done some long training runs on short routes, too. It feels good to know that you can do it!

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    1. We do what works, don't we? And you have ran some great races, Tina.

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  4. My entire year of racing is without a proper training cycle. I have so much on my plate with the boys graduating and heading off to college - I run when I can and just try to hit the mountain trails once/week. I did a 50k with a 14 mile long run, and it went surprisingly well. I also tried a 9000' hilly 50k a few weeks later and it was a nightmare. But I was okay with it because right now, this is all I have in me. There'll be other times I can train properly.

    Good to hear your foot's feeling better and you're gaining a bit more confidence for the race. No doubt in my mind you'll rock it!! :)

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    1. I've been trying to do the same with mountain trail training, Jill. It's surprisingly hard to make it happen! Thanks for reminding me that all of us have this challenge. Hmm. 9000'.. trying to visualize that.

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  5. I think "perfect training cycle" is kind of an oxymoron. Pretty sure I've never had one. But the imperfections teach us tenacity and to overcome obstacles, right? I'm a tester as well. 20 milers are total confidence builders.

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    1. True!! It would be nice though, if there were such a thing. Maybe I am just waking up to reality. haha

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  6. I've run a marathon while only training on a treadmill and it was a mental beat down. As far as your training, I wholeheartedly believe you'll get the 50k done because your stubbornness will not allow you to quit, but most importantly, God is now and will be much closer to you than the shirt on your back.

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    1. Oh, wow. That would be hard for me to handle as well!
      You are right. He will see me through! Every step..

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  7. Is there such thing as a perfect training cycle? :) That is definitely gutsy but looks like it worked out fine! And cave-crawling is no fun for anybody.

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    1. Ha! Not so gutsy , as it was just looking at the calendar and realizing the timing. Then it's just try or don't try. :) I think you know what i mean!

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  8. I don't think you're crazy at all! I totally would have to do a "test 20 miler" before a 50K. So… looks like you got it all in the bag! Truth in that no training cycle is perfect. It seems that something always crops up. Looking forward to your 50k!

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    1. Hahaha!! I think you would do more than a test 20 miler. You might do several! You make me smile. :D
      I'm so glad you are doing OK lady. Gave your blog a read tonight. You are in the homestretch now!

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  9. Ah, Raina, long time! I saw your last post and didn't get around to commenting. And I just want to let you know that I don't think you are an idiot! It is an impossible question to answer--Run or Rest?!?! I like your system of evaluating things in the morning and then giving it a test run. That's where I am at this point with my recent adductor strain (as of this week-BOO) and recurrent calf/shin problems. Sigh... All this after a rough 2013 and a pretty good year so far. I am so glad that your 20-miler went well! Gives me hope as it seems like you didn't have to rest for a terribly long time in the grand scheme of things--about 9-10 days since your foot felt "off," right? Best of luck in your upcoming race and hope to read more hopeful posts about your comeback. Take care!

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    1. Ah. I am so happy to hear from you. Been thinking about you lots! I've had several times-off lately. More than I like to see... but each with just a few days of recovery while I sort things out. Hardest part is always trying to figure if a little running helps or hurts. There is a tipping point with the tendonitis that I have experienced. It's hard to stop when you are signed up for stuff! It still feels off, but the question is whether it is improving or not. I think it is! Sometimes the answer is just less running and more PT/ stretching.
      Hoping that your adductor strain gets better pronto, Allison!

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  10. "the double-dominant gene for stubbornness" Love it. You rock +Raina

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  11. If only I ran far enough to require more than one 500ml bottle ;-) Looks a great piece of kit although many of the ultra runners I know use the pack with two bottles on the front. Easier access?

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