Monday, January 26, 2009

Okay! Sheesh, I'll update!

As I just said, I'll update.
I haven't posted anything new because I haven't wanted to talk about it.

Last weekend on the 17th I sprained my left ankle pretty bad at Capital Peak. I spent a week on crutches. Nothing broken, but lots of swelling and pain. Today it is still a bit swollen and tender and lovely colors (although much of the color has gone now too).

The doctor's prognosis on the 19th was 3 weeks with no running, stay off trails for a while. He did say I could swim, bike, elliptical etc... after a week. My husband says I still need to wait a few days until ALL the swelling is gone before I do those activities. My husband did clear me to return to the weight room with nothing that requires weight to be born on my left ankle. So that is where I am headed in about 45 minutes.

I am anxious to get back to running, afraid to lose too much more fitness, that it won't come back. Afraid I will gain weight and be a slacker if I don't hurry up and heal. I know I need to let it heal. Of course I just want it to heal faster. Patience, I know, patience. It's hard though and I don't want to.

There. An update. I am grumpy. I want to run.

Grace and peace to you (and I need some too)

Sunday, January 11, 2009

Light and Darkness

Bridle Trails was run in both the light and the dark. Both had their challenges. Light brought more speed and the dark, well, rain, water and mud of all degrees of sloppiness.

First I'll say that I fully intended on running a 50k, but somewhere along the third of the 6 loops I managed to just barely step onto a root or rock. I didn't put all my weight on it at all, but I felt my left knee wibble wobble just a bit. I even said out loud, "woa, that coulda been bad." I kept going, along with Steve and Rob, having a grand time sloshing through the dark and wet mud.

By the time we completed the 3rd loop and 15 miles it was pretty messy. We headed out and I could begin to feel my knee tighten up. No pain, but I would have to really be careful as I put my feet down. As we progressed and the trail progressed in sloppiness, I realized that I could be in for real trouble if I landed wrong or slipped the wrong way just once and twisted my knee I'd be done and out for a while. So while I still felt good and strong I decided I should be done at the end of the loop with 20 miles of wetness, darkness and muddiness. It was hard to stop when I still felt like I could keep running, but I chose to look next week and another round of sloppiness at Capital Peak, and even further to Cascade Crest. So I knew it was a good choice.

On to the light and darkness of the run. As I said earlier, the light brought more speed. Rob and I had a fairly fast first loop, got caught up in the pack. 49 minutes. Not super fast, but fast when you saw the conditions and knew you had to keep going for 25 more miles and conditions were sure to change. In the light I could also see very well. I could see where to jump to and how to maneuver and get around the stumps and roots. I could run behind Rob or another runner and track well. You could see where the trail went and knew you were in the right place.

By the 3rd loop it was pitch black, raining and super puddley and muddy. I had two lights. One on my head and one around my waist. Now the fact that it was dark didn't bother me. I wasn't scared or anything. It was just plain hard to see. I figured out that I had to be several steps behind Rob or Steve or else my lights shone on their feet and I would focus on their feet instead of the terrain and where to place my feet. I had to concentrate very hard on myself. I had to get into a zone. It was interesting, but being in the dark like that and focusing on my light I felt out of my body. I was aware that I was moving but it was like my brain and my feet and the light. Nothing else. If I glanced at the runner ahead or at an ambient light in the distance I would stumble. It was about that intense focus on the light in front of me at my feet and following only it, no diversions. I was totally dependant on that light. I couldn't succeed without it.
Today as I thought more and more about last night and as I sat in church and listened to the pastor talk about the "light (Christ)" I put some things together. As a Christian I have always tried to "shine like a light in the darkness." But last night I had to follow the light and be super focused on the light or I could be in trouble. I had to be totally dependant on that light. I think that goes for the life of Christian as well. Be focused and follow the light and be the light for others or you could find yourself in a bunch of trouble. A favorite song of mine came to mind as I was pondering today:

"Let It Be Me" by the Indigo Girls

Sticks and stones battle zones a single light bulb on a single thread for the black sirens wail history fails rose-colored glass begins to age and crack while the politicians shadowbox the power ring in an endless split decision never solve anything from a neighbor's distant land i heard the strain of the common man

let it be me (this is not a fighting song) let it be me (not a wrong for a wrong) let it be me, if the world is night, shine my life like a light

well the world seems spent and the president has no good idea of who the masses are well I'm one of them and I'm among friends trying to see beyond the fences of our own backyard I've seen kingdoms blow like ashes in the winds of change but the power of truth is the fuel for the flame so the darker the ages get there's a stronger beacon yet

let it be me (this is not a fighting song) let it be me (not a wrong for a wrong) let it be me, if the world is night shine my life like a light

in the kind word you speak in the turn of the cheek when your vision stays clear in the face of your fear then you see turning off a light switch is their only power when we stand like spotlights in a mighty tower all for one and one for all then we sing the common call

let it be me (this is not a fighting song) let it be me (not a wrong for a wrong) let it be me, if the world is night shine my life like a light.

I love this song. "Let it be me, If the world is night, shine my life like a light." Sorry I coulnd't get it to write in stanzas. It keeps jumbling up into paragraphs making it hard to read.

So, running in the mud and darkness have their lessons too. It was a great run and a good time. I struggled to stay warm for a while afterwards, but warmed up by staying in the bathrooms while I waited for everyone to finish their 6 loops. I know now how to focus in the dark, a skill I look forward to applying!

Grace and peace to you...and a little light.

Saturday, January 3, 2009

Cascade Crest 100 mile Endurance Run

Well, my entry form for CCC 100 is officially in the mail! Woo Hoo!
On to lots of training!

Grace and peace to you!

Friday, January 2, 2009

Doing the Double

Well I finally completed a double. The Last Chance marathon in Bellingham on New Year's Eve and the First Call to Run 50k New Year's Day.
Today I am a bit tired but feel pretty darned good. Michelle and Rob have written great reports of how the races went so I will direct you towards their sites. I plan to come back an d write a bit more, but I have to get caught up with housework after being gone for essentially three days! With a husband and two kids, the task can sometimes seem as big as running the double! :)
So I'll try to add more to this post soon!

Grace and Peace to you.