Scatter my ashes here...

Scatter my ashes here...
scatter my ashes in the desert...

Monday, November 10, 2008

A Vegetative State

Last week my physical activity consisted of taking the girls for short walks and whatever distance I covered on my feet at work. I did no running. I'm tired, I needed an easy week anyway after two long runs in 13 days. I've been in a vegetative state.

I can't say I've been feeling bad though. Any low energy feelings I might have had after my Halloween weekend training runs were obliterated with the results of the election on Tuesday! I can't help mentioning it here. President Obama. I keep repeating it, like it hasn't sunk in yet. I wonder what would have happened in the last two elections if we'd had the kind of voter turnout we had this time?

But then, maybe that's what this country needed, to reach a point where the cost of voter apathy was too high. The younger voters made a huge difference. You know something's up when in a college town of 130,000 people, 50,000 of them show up for a rally when Obama comes to town. It was long past time for the country to pull their heads out of the sand, lose the stodgy 1950s Ward and June Cleaver facade mentality and move forward.

Anyway, I look forward to the next 8 years and beyond. I could go on and on about it, but this is a running blog!

Today I ran, real running, for an hour on the trails at the Environmental Learning Center. It was a perfect Fort Collins November day, gray sky, cold air, leafless trees, crunching leaves under my feet, and the deafening sound of geese flying overhead. I always think September and October are my favorite months, but November comes pretty close.

Coming to the realization that I don't have to train too hard from now until Across the Years has helped me accept that a little vegetating is a good thing.

The girls have been setting a good example...

I am no longer in denial that the weather has cooled off and snow is right around the corner. Today I finally put my slick tire on the bike and loaded it on the trainer. I'll be spending a lot of time there this winter.

Speaking of denial, I am getting some body work done tomorrow. I have too long put off finding a massage therapist here in the Fort and relied on occasional massages from Dennis. I've had this nagging hamstring "thing", I guess it is a tear that never completely healed, or I have some scar tissue in there that needs to be softened up, or something. I have no idea. I finally found someone to try after talking with Felix last week. We'll see how it goes.

All I know is that every time I try to run faster than 7 1/2 minute pace I feel my hamstring and I know I need to back off or I'll injure myself worse, and it's been there since last spring. It doesn't bother me until I put in 70 miles or so if I go slow! I need to get the kinks worked out and deal with it like an injury. It almost hurts worse to say the I word!

There I said it. Does that make it real? It doesn't count as an injury if it doesn't stop you from doing what you want to do, right? I can run, pretty much as far as I want to. I just can't run fast.

I decided after my last few Tortoise & Hare runs that I would like to be able to run fast again, and I plan to take a break from long ultras next year to get some speed and running fitness back before my next run at Badwater. I know I need to do two things in order to do that. One is to give my hamstring a chance to completely heal, and the other is to take a real break from running after Across the Years.

I'll spend more time on the bike, maybe I'll swim at 24 Hour Fitness, and maybe do some nordic skiing if we get snow. If I can find my skis.

I am looking forward to going to Arizona for Across the Years. Rodger has done all sorts of changes to the course at Nardini Manor and it will no longer resemble a prison camp on the southeast end of the track. My friend Lynn posted some pictures of the improvements so far, and they look great. I never minded the southeast side, I didn't even mind the oleanders or the narrow curves, but it will give the course a different feel, and will be a nice improvement.

I wish Steph could go with me to Arizona this time but she's taking this year off from ATY and pet sitting for some friends. I'm planning an extra day in Santa Fe to go to some galleries to give my artistcally-deprived brain a treat. And then I'll visit my family while I'm in Scottsdale.

Over the next few weeks I'll run the Turkey Trot, the last Tortoise & Hare of the year, and the annual Fort Collins Running Club Holiday Lights run & potluck, where I'll be doing a short slideshow and presentation of my pictures and stories from Badwater.

In general, I've been feeling better than okay, considering what I've been up to lately. I need to get my thyroid checked again this week to see where things are. If I could get a decent night's sleep for several nights in a row without waking up and being unable to go back to sleep, and getting hot and then cold, it would be awesome. I'd feel fantastic.

I have a feeling that the sleep problems aren't going away too soon. I'm not in denial about this being perimenopausal stuff. I'm not getting older, I'm getting stronger. I plan to be stronger and fitter at 50 than I am now. I wish everyone would think that way, but then I'd be out of work.

Like our new President says, yes, we can!

The Buffaloes agree.

1 comment:

JeffO said...

You need regular massage! Your hams would thank you - but your bank account would haunt you.
I'll bet that if you leave ultras for a couple of years, you probably won't lose any ultra conditionaing. It seems the fastest ultra-runners are first fast at shorter distances. Look at Matt Carpenter - he rarely does very long runs. He just sprints 2-3 times a day!
I keep nagging myself to work on short speed races more often.