Torture Report: Can I Get A Ride…Again & It’s HOT!

(L): This was a full week of torture for me as I am actually taking this training seriously.  I know it’s shocking given my track record the last couple of years.  I walked, hiked, and ran everyday this week except yesterday.  I needed a day off.

I have been feeling a little stiff when I wake up in the morning, but nothing a little or a lot of stretching hasn’t helped.  Overall, though, I have been feeling pretty good. Friday morning I met Melissa at the trail for an early morning run.  I felt loose, awake, and ready to roll and then my left calf started to ache.  There were many stops to stretch, walk and try to get it to subside.  I had no luck and no options other than to suck it up and finish our run.  Thanks to Melissa for being a good sport.  I came home and ate  another banana and hydrated all day, which seemed to help as I had no issues the rest of the weekend.

Saturday morning, we were in the mountains and we opted for a hike.  My GPS does not have an elevation tracker, but it did say I climbed the equivalent of 47 flights of stairs. Honestly, it felt like way more at 12,000 feet.  For those of you in Colorado, we were hiking up by Mt. Bierstadt and there is still plenty of snow for those of you craving a little more of the cold stuff.  It was an absolutely beautiful day and we enjoyed it, but not as much as the pups.  They love the snow.

On Sunday, Alex and I decided to do our training run on the Slacker Half-Marathon course.  We drove up to Loveland ski area with the intention of running 5 miles to the Bakersville exit.  Andy said he would come and pick us up when we were finished and drive us back to our car.  It was a perfect plan, in theory.  However, when we finished our 5 miles the hubby was kayaking on the lake and didn’t answer his phone.  That wasn’t part of our plan.  We contemplated running back to our car, which would have put us at 10 miles for the day, but the uphill climb was a big deterrent.  We decided that we preferred running the entirety of the course over turning back so we trudged onward hoping for a call back from Andy.  After a few minutes we decided to call him back and this time he answered.  He let us know that he was at the furthest part of the lake and would come get us, but it would be awhile.  Translation:  we were getting a few more miles in.  Alex and I easily got to mile 7 and thought we might make it to the next town when Andy drove around the bend.  In the end, we logged 7.5 miles and were pretty happy with the results. In all my years of running I have never had to have Andy pick me up.  Now two weeks in a row he has had to bail me out.  I may need to start planning better.

This week I am planning to continue my short runs through the week with one more long run this weekend.  We have 11 days until race day.  While I don’t expect to break any PRs, I do feel better going into this year’s race than last year.
At the REAL trail!

(G): As many of you know, last week was big for us. I mean B-I-G. And quickly on Thursday I realized that I was going to have to do something with all that stress, anxiety and adrenaline. Before 9 am I was on the treadmill running because I couldn’t take it. I was breaking a sweat anyway, so I figured I may as well be working out. While running, Lowi texted me about her stress and I told her to workout and that it would help immensely. I am really hoping the anxiety that comes with publishing your own book translates into weight loss and fab fitness!

Of course, you can’t workout hard and then just eat junk and drink beer and have it all even out. There is always a part of the equation I struggle with that seems so unfair.

Foam rolling and poor Basil is just exhausted by all this work.
And the ice baths continue.

I continue to rehab like it’s my job and run the maximum that I am allowed.

Slowly, I am accepting the fact that this is likely not going to be a year full of running adventures. At least not the way I planned.

But I do have a race in 11 days and though I am going to have limitations I am looking forward to it. Even if I can only walk a bit here and there after my 5-mile running maximum it will still be fun. Having a full 24 hours of a race is always such a blast. It’s a weird experience in that, of course, 24 hours is a long race but you have absolutely nothing else to do. You know you are going to be there for a day plus and so you aren’t thinking about getting to the grocery, or doing laundry, or an email you need to send. You are present and simply taking it all in.

It’s an exercise in one-pointed focus and it’s mentally liberating.

On Saturday, I was utterly miserable with no shade and plenty of heat.

And since it’s been really heating up in Ohio, we are getting serious about the heat training. Saturday, we went out around 12:30 p.m. and it was already well into the 80s. I was miserable from step one. I couldn’t seem to get a handle on my breathing, I was so hot, and that stupid backpack with my extra shoes only made it more difficult. I couldn’t wait to get my foot into that ice bath when I got home and it took me a few hours to not feel like I could fall asleep or into a coma.

I’ve been working on my balance. Look at this changing shoes like a flamingo!
All smiles and green goodness for miles! OK just 5 miles.

Then I had a stroke of genius in that while I am only allowed to run 5 miles I figured I should starting venturing out to more hilly and complicated terrain which, for me, signaled it was time to return to my most favorite local park, Highbanks! Sunday we headed out and while I am still not cleared to run up or down hills it’s good for my foot to get used to that kind of climbing again. And while it was even hotter than the day before all the shade cast by the canopies of trees made it so much more enjoyable. And being out in a true nature setting did wonders for me. I can breathe easier in nature. I am happier in nature. I am at peace there as well.

And due to a little Garmin mishap I did an extra .3 mile of unsanctioned distance. I stopped my watch when I changed my shoes and forgot to turn it back on. It took me a few minutes to realize it but being truly obsessive about distance, I couldn’t stop till my watch said 5 miles even though I, technically, knew where the 5-mile mark was without the watch.

I like to keep pushing the corners of what’s allowed. I choose the heat on purpose. I chose to go an extra .3 because I figure, what can it hurt? I need to keep that part of my brain engaged, the one that always asks me to do more, go further, never settle because that’s what gets you to the finish. That’s what gets me to the next goal and lately at 5 miles I am not getting much chance to use that part of myself. I don’t want that side of me to atrophy. 😃

It’s good for us to continue to ask for just a little more.

Sunshine & Sarcasm,

Lowi & G

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