Monday, January 2, 2012

Week ending January 1, 2012: Running, with a pound of perspective

When I read my last post and think about this one, I think that my whininess was unwarranted. And more people commented to me personally about that post than any other. Maybe because I sounded vaguely suicidal or something. I will try to sound more balanced this time.
I had a great run on New Year’s Eve, after a week of feeling sorry for myself and limping around the neighborhood. I rested my leg for a full week, trying not to stretch it. Last Monday I went for a walk with my Gorgeous and Bristol the Enduro-Dog. A few houses down the street, I picked up into a light jog. Two or three steps in and the pinpoint pain in my right calf came right away. I even had to turn around and limp home to ice it. 
I have not yet mentioned in this blog that I commute by bicycle, and Tuesday happened to be one of the rare days I drive to work, this time because of heavy rain. That always multiplies whatever grim mood I’m in; being injured and missing my ride is about the worst thing I can think of. I did ride the rest of the week, and did the Friday Lunchtime Ride, a casual 8 or so mile social event that I get to do for work, this time on a B-Cycle. After work I drove down to Cottonwood Trail so as to avoid pavement and a downhill to test my leg on flat dirt. Three miles with Bristol felt fine, and I decided to go with my long run on Saturday.
I planned to do two laps on the groomed trails at Southside. I’ve run there a pile of times, and the ten-mile Southside Loop trail takes little effort beyond running--no route-finding, or steep climbing, or significant technical sections. I’d not run more than one lap at a time because I generally prefer longer more complicated routes. But my friend Jason has done it a bunch of times, and Seth did two loops last weekend, and I felt some mojo knowing that it was only ten miles, not very technical, and very familiar. I could stop at the car to fill up with water.
I started off easy, not wanting to push off hard and stress my calf. But immediately I felt better than Friday. I ran the loops in the opposite direction I usually run there, and appreciated the new views. The long section that follows the river was especially beautiful, and running upstream always feels a little harder than downstream. 
Bristol was frisky for both loops, his longest run by about three miles. He would have gone for a third, and I would have, too, if not for the race next weekend. We finished the two loops with even splits (1:29, 1:32); a five minute stop at the car made the whole run 3:06. 
I feel good about next week’s run, and plan to run as easy at the beginning as I did today. I have no time goals in mind, and will strive to say something funny at every aid station. I try not to worry about my calf. 
This morning I joined Seth and his wife Ashley for a few miles of the Hair of the Dog 10 miler that runs past our house. It was Ashley’s longest run, and she ran great for the three miles I ran with her. 
**She ran 1:38 on a hilly course, and apparently kept getting faster. Way to go, Ashley!

Total  26 miles
This past Monday, a high school friend of mine, whom I have not really kept up with, announced on Facebook that he had found a heart donor, and his transplant doctor was on his way to harvest the organ. He would have surgery that afternoon. Yesterday I got a nice note from another old friend who had nearly died this summer from a brain tumor. 
Those are real health problems.

No comments:

Post a Comment