BULL RUN RUN 50 Miler-The non race recap
I wrote a beautiful post about my Bull Run Run 50 Miler (insert J-Z voice here: If I do say so myself)! The internet Gods conspired against me, and somehow it disappear. Tackling my first 50 Mile race was my goal for the spring of 2014. It was a lofty goal, and it was a redemption from 2013, year of my discontent. I accomplished my goal! YAY!! I crossed the finished line, and ran a happy and strong race in a difficult course. It was one the happiest day of my life. A day of triumph over my doubts and fears.
Here are a few photos that capture the essence of my experience:
Run strong my friends!!
You’re reached in point in your life when you realize that is the little things that matter. What you do every day, your routine is what really comprises your life. Whether you believe your life is fabulous or like one of my friends at work use to say: “life sucks and then you die”. Then there are certain moments of said life that are indeed fabulous and that will be with you forever. Those moments make life worth living.
I was reminded of that on my run on Tuesday. It is taper week before marathon # 5 (where did the time go?), and my plan called for an easy 30-40 minute run. I usually am an early morning runner, but I did not run in the am in favor or sleeping in as I had a running event the night before and had a late bedtime.
While I was still at work on Tuesday, I sent a text to my hubby for us to run together after work near our home. My shortest run during training is more than 30-40 minutes, so I had a brilliant idea to run my old running route, I call it “To the river and back“. It goes from our neighborhood street to a paved narrow trail on Algonkian Pkwy for a mile and change, then you make a right into the Potomac Heritage Trail until you reach the Potomac River”. It’s a beautiful route, one that is so close to my heart. This was my almost daily run when I first started running and was training for my first marathon (MCM 2010)
I was so new to the sport that at that point, I didn’t even know that there was a different name (trail running) if you were running on different surfaces. For me, it was just running and it was fun. I loved this route, I was happy running through the woods there every other day. Running there on Tuesday made me realized that I fell in love with trail running from the very beginning. It was almost magical to run there again now. It made me feel like that newbie runner that was running because she loved how she felt; because running was her happy place. There was no hope for PRs and definitely not worries about how fast or how far!
Again, what you do every day, not matter how little it may be, it’s what really matters.
I am making an attempt at consistency here. It is always hard for me to find the time to write on the blog. You see it is so easy for me to post in other mediums, in fact, I am an Instagram junkie! I do a daily post (sometimes twice a day) right after my workouts. My usual is a collage of photos with an inspirational quote. Ok, enough with justifying why I haven’t written here in more than 6 months.
After my unfortunate fall and subsequent injury, I could not run for several months. It was hard at first. Injury is a lonely place. You feel disconnected from a big part of your world. Your closest friends of course remain in contact with you. They send you well wishes and words of encouragement, but trust me, sometimes there are not words kind enough to get you out of that funk.
I wallowed for a bit, and then took the decision of looking forward and not living in the past. It was not like all that grieve was going to help me return to running any faster. DUH!
I started walking at the run clubs (yes, I still went to all my run clubs every week)! To be a leader, and a good one, you must lead by example; so so I did. I showed up every week with my bandaged ankle and started the runs. Sometimes, I will walk behind the group or just wait for the group to return and have our usual social post run gathering. I also started doing P90X at home to strengthen my muscles and keep my fitness. Before I knew it I was jogging slowly again! (huge smirk here) So I have been running since the last week of August 2013! YAY!!!
It hasn’t been all roses! with some running between August and September, I had the delusional idea that I should go and run at the Chicago Marathon (It was my goal race for the fall of 2013 before I got injured). I started by saying, oh I am going to be there anyways (my husband was running too), hotel and flights are paid for. It will be a waste of a good race. what about if I have a breakthrough? Big mistake! I toed the line of the 2013 Chicago Marathon, marathon # 4, and I knew from the very beginning that something was off. (oh yeah, having not enough training, and still recovering from injury # 2 on the same year. That must be it)
It was a nice morning! Heck, Chicago was an amazing city and the organization of this race was superb. Best I have seen so far! But that is not the point. I shouldn’t have toed the line period. To keep this part of my story short, I got my first DNF. (nooooooo)
The funny part is that I was not bitter, and I was not sad! Believe it or not, I was happy that I had the courage to DNF and not be too stupid to continue and risk being injured. So that’s the story!
Much more has happened since, but Rome was not built in a day! So…to be continued!!
Limping my way out of the trail–“Pain can change you, but that doesn’t mean it has to be a bad change. Take that pain and turn it into wisdom.” ~Unknown
Shortly after the Rosaryville 25K post, I had a freak accident. I fell in the trails and sprained my right ankle. How is that a freak accident you may ask? Well, even though the picture suggests otherwise, I was not actually running. Ha! I was having my Lululemon Ambassador photoshoot. (just my luck!)
I was just recovering from an injury, and there I was again, injured! Back to square 1. It is one of those things where you cannot help but ask yourself “why me?” It seem like I could not catch a break this year. I spend several weeks rehabbing my ankle, and debating whether or not, I will quit running forever.
I am not a quitter, so I decided to just do what you supposed to do when you are injured, rest, rehab your injury and start over; and so I did. There was pool running, light upper body weight training, heck, I even got a brand new road bike. Then I started to walk slowly, eventually started running. It took me around one month to be back running without a funky gate. (if you have ever been injured, you know that as a result of whatever side your injury resides, your gait changes as you start to overcompensate).
My plan early in the year was to rehabilitate my calf, and train for Chicago. I was able to do that, training was going well, and I was very happy with my decision of purchasing a real training plan tailored for me. But with all of the incidents of the year, I have had a rough year, my confidence was shattered and even though I am back running, I know that I am not where I used to be. I also learned to be more patient and forgiving with myself. I love running. I do it as a way of life. It’s part of my life, but it’s not my livelihood.
With that realization, I took the decision to pull the plug on my goal of running Chicago (seeking a BQ). It was an important decision, and one that I thought about for days. I will not run a marathon this year. I will focused on strengthening my body and getting myself back to a place where I feel confident, I can attain my goal.
Like the tittle of my post “Not all who wander are lost” I am not running a marathon this year, but that doesn’t mean that I am giving up on my goals.
Starting to write again. Documenting my journey, and keeping myself accountable. Learning from my own mistakes, and sharing with other runners who just like me put themselves out there every day; training, sweating, suffering, believing!
The run gave me so much energy that I ended up driving to K’s house for some more outdoor activities. We headed out to the Billy Goat Trail A. As we were driving it started pouring but that did not stopped us, I was really determined to do the hike, as K has shared her experiences in the trail.
The canal was full with people enjoying the outdoors. Picnicking and kayaking seem to be the activities of choice. Lots of bikers and runners as well. We mounted our bikes in G-town and made it all the way to Chevy Chase. 22 miles roundtrip to be exact. Such good effort must be compensated, so Dolcezza in Georgetown was the venue of choice to meet with Ang, and enjoy some much deserved Argentinian Gelatto.