Saturday, August 30, 2014

when it rains it pours

literally and figuratively...

today i was at my grandmother's because my father was having an end of summer party.  i had my dogs with me and needed to get a shovel out of the garage to clean up after one of them.  i go in the garage and don't turn on the light.  then i kick the car tire stopper.  when i do this i stub the second toe on my right foot successfully  making sure that i will lose the nail.  it was already painful but now it's blue so i'm quite certain that it will come off sometime in the near future.

later in the day i go back in a second time to get the shovel... this time i remember the light and all is well.

i go back a third time and no such luck... i kick the damn thing again but this time stub the pinkie toe on my right foot and break the damn toe!  how the fuck am i going to run a race next saturday (exactly one week after breaking my toe)?!?

i am assuming that i should probably not run tomorrow... probably not all week truth be told... so, um... how will my toe be ok in one week?!?

this is the race that is VERY IMPORTANT!  i've been training for this damn thing FOR EVER!  i just ran 2+ loops of the black loop in lapham just this morning!  17+ miles for christ's sake!

i hate life...  also... it was raining all damn day today so there's that.

Friday, August 29, 2014

ninja moves

on tuesday i ran the black loop at lapham peak the fastest i've ever ran it (1:02:28)!  i've been running at lapham a few times a week in preparation for the instep 1/2 marathon that's coming up on september 6th.  i'm a bit nervous about it.  the course is two black loops with the tower thrown in during the first of the loops.

the tower at lapham peak
it should prove to be quite challenging.  in fact, that's the only part that i'm not looking forward to.  at my slowest i finish the loop in around 1:12 or 1:15... so throwing the tower in... well, i'm not sure how much that will slow me down, but it concerns me.  i think i can get moving pretty quickly once i get to the top as going back down should be a breeze.  the last (and possibly only) time i ran two of the black loop i completed it in 2:20:06 and that wasn't racing it.  that was also missing the tower so there's that.  my goal is to finish the race in 2:10 or under.  i think racing it i should be able to accomplish that.  i run this course so often that it is an attainable goal.

when i ran on tuesday i also managed to pull the most crazy ninja fall of all time.  i was running a flat just after asthma hill when i tripped so fast that if one were to blink you'd miss it.  let me back up a bit.  when i was coming up to the bathrooms i decided to bypass them as i was feeling so good and i was alone so i wanted to try and run the loop as hard and fast as felt good to see what time i could get.  i was really interested to see just how fast i could complete it.  so i just kept going when normally i stop and pee.  i passed another runner who was running at a leisurely pace as we were turning the corner heading up to asthma hill.

the flat at the top of asthma hill
now, i don't know about you but i tend to naturally pick up the pace when people are around me to see it.  don't know why... i just do it before i even realize i do it.  i mean... normally, at this spot near asthma hill i might be inclined to do a little walking but not this day... not with this lady behind me... nope. no way.  so i ran as much as i could up the incline towards the hill, and actually part of the hill and then i walked.  i walked the second half of the hill to the flat and then kept going.  it was once i hit the flat that something happened.  i was running just fine.  good form, feeling strong, breathing normal and not labored... i have no idea what happened.  next thing i know i'm on the ground.

here's what happened:  left foot stumble, left knee down, left forearm puncture, rolled on my back, right arm down, right foot down, and back up running.  i never even paused!  it was AMAZING!

i looked down at my left arm and the puncture wound was already the size of a golf ball on my arm and oozing blood but not really bleeding that much so while i was a bit concerned about the weird immediate swelling i just kept running.  mainly because... well... that woman.  weird, i know.

i did glance down at my knee and noticed some blood but again... not much so no worries.  i figured that since nothing really hurt i was probably fine.  i moved my arm around and nothing hurt so i didn't think anything was damaged.  nothing started to hurt until a few hills later at which point i stopped and examined things.  just some superficial injuries that i could tell through all the dirt.  i decided that i'd wash everything off when i got to the end of the run (2ish miles away), and reassess then.  my arm felt weird because the flesh was so swollen it was bobbing around, but other than that and the stinging on the scrapes on my leg... i felt great and kept running as fast as i could to get a good time.

i know, i know... priorities.   the thing is that i have that race next weekend and it's really important to me that i do well.  in fact, i am such a weirdo that i looked up last year's competitors in my age group to see what times i would need to beat to place.  then i looked them up to see if they were registered this year.  then i looked up everyone else (all 5 of them) who were registered in my age group this year as well as searched them on to see what my competition is for the race.  ok... that sounds a little weird once i type it out like that, but it is what it is.  i like to know my competition and how hard i will have to work to beat them.  especially, on what i consider my home turf so to speak.  i'm not fast enough (or young enough) to win in general, but i've been doing quite well in my age group and i strive to do better.  i have less anxiety going into the race if i know my competition.  i also looked up how many women over all that are signed up.  there's only 50 of them not counting myself.

i have so much respect for the trail and for lapham peak.  i love sharing it with people, but at the same time i want to OWN the course.

at the end of my run on tuesday i took the following picture before washing off my injuries.
ninja moves injury photo
turned out that things weren't so bad.  today (3 days later) everything is bruised and i've got a few scabs but other than that i'm no worse for wear.  i'm planning on running 3 loops of the black loop tomorrow to complete 20 miles.  i'm a little worried that i won't bother finishing as i may get bored and feel too tired to finish.  when i did the 2 loops a few weeks back i was pretty tired after the 2, but i'm running with a group for the first loop at least so that should help.  3 hours of running just seems really daunting.

it will certainly be an accomplishment if i complete it.  i think there's rain in the forecast too so there's also that...

Saturday, August 23, 2014

badgerland striders 1/2 marathon

badgerland striders 1/2 marathon - august 23, 2014

time = 1:50:35 (1:51:12 last year)
pace = 8:26
placed 11 in my age group (40-44) out of 66 (9 out of 61 last year)
placed 65 in women out of 441 (58 out of 408 last year)
placed 226 overall out of 838 (226 out of 792 last year)

weird to get 226 again this year. also weird that i ran faster and placed lower in my age group...
awesome striders' medal
there's some fast old ladies out there.

so i did a couple of things different for this race which proved to be disastrous. i used a new nuun which has caffeine in it.  not sure if that contributed to the problem or not.  i'm guessing not but it's hard to tell at this point considering the disaster that i call my stomach.  i stupidly opted for an aleve which is an nsaid. i haven't taken an nsaid since ragnar and we all know how well that worked out.  basically, nsaids wreak havoc on my intestinal tract.  i also took an imodium assuming that they would cancel each other out yet i'd reap the benefits of both.  yeah, um, not so much.

the products i use that are beneficial and wonderful are:
  • x2 performance - 1 2oz bottle
  • 2 capsules of sports legs
  • 1 tablet of nuun in my water bottle
i'm going to assume that the nuun was fine and that my gut problems completely stemmed from the aleve.  

my splits
so... the run.  the race started out and i was supposed to be running it as a training run.  i decided i was going to keep it slow, steady, and run at a comfortable pace.  i decided on 8:20 as a good pace and began there.  i kept it there and ran.  at mile 2 my friend jim from the LPTR group passed me, and admittedly it was all over for the "training run" at that point.  oh, who am i kidding... i was never going to be able to contain myself and run this as a training run.  so jim passed me and i spent the next mile catching up to him.  we ran together until about mile 4 when i realized there was no way i was going to make it any further without peeing.  thankfully there was a port-o-potty conveniently up ahead at which point i ducked off to go.  moments later i was off again.  interestingly enough mile 4 was my fastest mile at 7:48.  i could see jim ahead of me and spent the next couple of miles catching up again.  i think i caught up to him around 6 or 7.  we then ran the rest of the race together which was really great.  it was around 77 degrees with 95% humidity.  very foggy and so wet!
my stomach started letting me know how uncomfortable it was around mile 10.  by mile 11 i had to take walk breaks.  i wasn't sure i was going to make it to the end without hitting a bathroom which was so disappointing!  thankfully this course is almost completely flat so it goes very quickly.  

jim stuck with me the whole time bless his heart!  it's pretty awesome that even with the walking we still managed really good splits!  i'm disappointed with the last 3 miles, but it really couldn't be helped.  i just keep thinking about how i could have shaved at least a whole minute off my time if i had not had the stomach issues!  what a stupid idea to take the aleve!  admittedly, if jim had not been there to encourage me on i may have walked that whole last mile... or stopped at that last port-o-potty.  i'm so grateful that he was there.  i finished strong and with a PR from last year.  so... good enough for me.  next year i'll do better.  

this is such a fun race.  the weather was so gross that i just was so happy when it was over.  they fed us sausages, potatoes, and of course beer.  i don't drink beer so whateves to that.  they also had the standards... bananas, water, some sodas, and oranges.  the start and finish is at the estabrook beer garden which wisconsinites really love (obviously).  

my poor toes
i've been running in my shoes for over 300 miles now.  this is notable because when i got home today and got my shoes off i realized just how badly i need to replace them.  ugh... blood blisters.  i will be losing a nail for sure.  my poor toes.  runners toes... oh yeah, so hot.   yup... those are my toes fresh out of my shoes.  don't worry... i have since lanced the blisters and painted the nails so they look presentable.  geez louise...

Saturday, August 9, 2014


alright... so the good news is that my leg is seemingly better.  my mileage this week was 38 and some change (sunday-saturday).  i ran my long run (13.65) on the trails today and was pain free up until about the last 3 miles.  even then the discomfort was really just in the back of my right knee which is promising.  i've been rolling my IT band religiously a few times a day so i think that's been pivotal to the recovery.

with any luck i'll be good to go and back to normal soon enough.  lots of stress lately in my personal life which is never a good thing.  i think it contributes greatly to the deep downward spiral that enables me the opportunity to fall into a depression.  i'm on the upswing tho' so there's that.

Saturday, August 2, 2014

it's getting pitiful in here

in a second it will be so mellow dramatic and pitiful in this space that you might want to stop reading right now.

sitting here in this chair...

struggling with the inability to run comfortably and the knowledge that i am "resting" and should continue to "rest"  fills me with such a deep and all encompassing sadness.  it overwhelms me and makes me feel purposeless.  i'm going to quantify what i know sounds absolutely ridiculous by also saying that i am bipolar and running staves off that imbalance in my brain.  today i am sitting here and my world is caving in.  i have fought injury after injury and today it is all too much.  i am fighting back the tears and for what?  because my stupid leg hurts and i've got this knot in my right calf that suddenly appeared yesterday and i can't roll it out to save my life.  the IT band in my right leg is giving me discomfort from my hip to my knee and makes it challenging to run and that came on for no apparent reason.

i cannot catch a freaking break.

running gives my life purpose.  it gives me a release from all the weird chemicals in my brain that mess everything else up.  without the ability to run all of that just weighs so heavily on me that all i want to do is curl up in a ball and languish away.  (i told you this was going to be mellow dramatic)...

today just sucks.