Scatter my ashes here...

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

Saturday, March 26, 2011

Run 'til it falls off...

I had a tough running week. It was a challenge for me, as I didn't feel so great for most of it. I didn't get the miles I'd hoped for, but things got better toward the end of the week.

When I speak about running, I always tell the audience that you have to take setbacks and turn them around as positive events. You have to be able to re-frame the not-so-great experiences and look at them as helpful and part of the process of moving forward. The old silver lining cliche.

I had the opportunity to do this for myself the other day. This week was exceptionally exhausting for me, before I even got to my running days.

As I entered the hospital Monday morning to go into work, after crossing the bridge from the parking garage, there was a table staffed by two people who were giving out snacks and other stuff. I stopped to ask what it was for. They said, "It's certified nurses' week. Are you certified?"

Resisting the urge to smirk, I said, "Yes, I am." I actually do have my certification in critical care, even though I don't work there any more.

They offered me some granola bars and juice, and handed me a
little tag to wear on my badge that said, "Certified".

Obviously they didn't know who they were giving that to. It was NOT going to be used as it was intended.

Monday and Tuesday I had two long, busy, exhausting, but extremely gratifying days at work, because I felt like I was able to make a positive impact on a patient's it was well worth the energy. But then I had a staff meeting early in the morning on Wednesday after my two long work days, and I happened to wake up at 3:30 am that morning, not by choice, but by another one of those nighttime hot flash/sweat fests.

After waking up early for that I felt completely wiped out. I knew running was not going to be an option until I got more sleep, so I headed over to the sauna and sat in there for 40 minutes. Then I came home and fell asleep from 11:30 am until nearly 3 pm. When I woke up, I felt human again. So I went running with the Wednesday night group, and they always kick my butt, they are so fast, it's my weekly speed workout to run with them.

After that run, I was wiped out again, and Thursday morning I went over to Tortilla Marissa's and hung my artwork in the restaurant. I had big plans to get some long miles in afterward. When I woke up that morning I knew it was going to be a challenge to get even a few miles in. I managed to crawl for 4 miles with the girls, and then I was done. It was 11:30 and I needed a nap again! After a 2 hour nap, I got another 7 miles in and that was it for the day. I was toast.

Friday morning I needed to get a decent long run in. Forty miles had been my original plan, and I started out with good intentions. I did my first 4 miles with the girls and after that I knew I was in trouble. I set out from the house and decided to do an out and back on the bike path and see how that felt. A few blocks into it, I started walking. I kept on moving and eventually the walking pace turned into something respectable.

Friday ended up as a 20 mile walk, which was useful, as I need to keep working on that walking pace. But the BEST thing that came of that was I started to develop a friction spot underneath the ball of my left foot, which has a callus on it. That's the one that became such an issue during Badwater in 2008, and slowed me down so much.

When I peeled my shoes and socks off Friday afternoon, I could see that a deep blister is forming underneath that same callus. That is AWESOME! I am going to keep working on growing that blister so the callus will eventually peel off, as it did after Badwater 08. That way I can start with a callus-free foot before Badwater this time.

Today I went up and did Rock Repeats and had an absolutely kick ass 22 mile workout. Five Rock Repeats at a good consistent pace, with the last one as the fastest one.

It was a beautiful clear day after the fog burned off. It was gusty up there and with the wind in your face it was freezing. But most of the time it was perfect.

I could see clouds on Longs Peak, and above Coyote Ridge.

There's another runner I met up there a few weeks ago named JP and he's training for Leadville. We found out we were doing the same workout and Katy and I ran into him last Saturday.

JP was up there today but he got a late start, so I was finishing my 3rd as he was starting out. It really helps to see another runner up there doing the same workout. By trying to guess where we'll pass each other on each out and back, I can try to push myself to run harder.

So tomorrow the plan is to do the long miles on the flats again, and alternate running and walking a lot, because walking creates more friction on the bottom of my feet. I'll run until the bottoms of my feet fall off! And that is the silver lining.

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