running again?!?

Saturday I had a chance to go for a walk amid all the hoo-haw of the weekend. I did my standard four mile out-and-back in the woods.

After making the turnaround and walking the downhill part of the trail, I wanted to run. This is the first desire to run since the marathon. I went with the feeling and loped along the trail. It felt so wonderful!!! I deemed it prudent to walk again after about a mile though I wanted to run farther.

This gives me hope that I will be able to run again. I had given it up as something I did while I was younger. Joy, bliss! I am pleased.

26.2 & camping

The two were back to back so I may as well put them in one post; it may be long.

I tried to not put any undue pressure on myself as far as the marathon went. With that in mind….

Friday after arriving in Newport, Jerry and I went for a little walk. We then had a “munchie-lunchie” dinner; all foods I was used to. I did not wish to eat some new cooking before the event.

Saturday I rose at 5:30, my usual time. I had my usual breakfast, did my usual stretches, wrapped my legs, and then headed to the the start area. We walked about a bit then the start at 7:00 arrived. It was chilly and the course passed the start area at mile three so I decided to wear my fleece until I passed it off to Jerry at that time.

As had been the norm, I walked the first two miles. I ran to the three mile mark and gave Jerry my fleece and he had some Chapstick for me, which I had requested. I walked the hill down to the bay front and then ran to the Embarcadero where the sidewalk was concrete. It is far less forgiving than asphalt.

I decided to walk for some time just to make sure my leg was warmed up. At about mile 8 I started running; felt wonderful. However, that lasted about a 1/4 mile. My lower left leg tendons felt like they snapped out of place. Not a pleasant feeling at all. OK, I walk; and I did, the remaining miles.

Jerry “caught up” with me on his bike about mile 10. It was very nice to see him. We chatted for a bit then he moved on as there were plenty of runners/walkers in the area.

The course was an out and back so as I saw mile markers for the return trip and for the outgoing, I did the math and determined the turnaround would be between miles 15 & 16. Gee, I was correct! Some folks were lamenting “where is the turnaround?” I gave them my answer and hoped they were encouraged.

About mile 15 I felt a large blister forming on the bottom of my right foot. Oh well, with that and my bum left leg I could probably stay with an even gait. Mile 20 brought the popping of said blister; I felt it go. Bummer. I still felt fine having been very good about drinking at all aid areas.

Jerry showed up again shortly after the burst blister. I was basically by myself so his riding did not hinder any one. After a bit I did realize talking with him was taxing my strength. I told him I needed to zone out again with LOTR. He went on his way to meet me at the finish.

I actually felt quite fine the entire time and finished at 5:52:01/ 13:26 pace. I was of course pleased to be done and I almost started crying but didn’t; wasn’t sure I would be understood if I did.

The finish area was less than advertised so we went back to the motel. I was able to assess the blister damage. Not pretty! The ball of my foot had blistered, popped, and skin shifted. It was about the size of a silver dollar. After showering, I put on ointment and a band aid. We then went for food….Local Ocean, the best stuff in town.

I did some serious hobbling and felt quite embarrassed. When we got back to the motel, I looked at the blister and it had filled up with fluid. I removed the band aid which had been holding the fluid in. Great relief ensued and that was that! No more problems all week.

Totals: (approx.)
run - 2.0
walk - 24.2
Now on to the camping!

Sunday we headed to Silver Falls State Park. We didn’t have a reservation but hoped that it not being a weekend it would not matter. We were correct. We paid for two nights and ended up staying a third. Monday we did some biking, 9 miles, on trails and single track. The waterfalls were quite pretty.

Wednesday, having checked the weather report we decided to go to the coast. Cape Lookout State Park was our destination. We secured a sunny site for two nights and basked in the warmth. Thursday was still sunny, and we felt we had hit a boon with warmth at the beach. In the afternoon we went walking, though we avoided the beach because the wind had picked up. Upon returning to our site, we saw that our staked tent, with sleeping bags & mat & “luggage” bags had rolled to the next site. We were astonished!! The wind gave no indication of letting up so we put everything in the van and moved to a more protected site. The rolling of the tent had badly bent four of the six tent poles. Fortunately Jerry was able to bend them into a usable shape. We pitched our tent in a wooded area of the campground and proceeded to prepare dinner. Hmm…. the rains followed the wind. We did cook but ate under the protection of the van tailgate.

It continued to rain through the night but we had hopes of drier weather as we went north Friday to Nehalem Bay State Park. It misted heavily as we made camp. It did not deter us from feasting on oysters cooked on the fire. During the night the rains returned and when we awoke Saturday, we were wet.

Time to give Mother Nature the nod and head home. We packed up a very wet campsite and drove home to arrive in time to cook a 9:00 breakfast. Then the unpacking and drying out commenced.

After all was unpacked and set to dry, Jerry went to Chinook to hang some more sheet rock. Home again, same projects……

ouch! (10 miles)

As previously mentioned, all remaining training will be walking. Expecting it to be a warm day, I set out early, 6:50 a.m. However, I never warmed up! I was wet from sweat but was never warm. Wish I had had my gloves! And I met a biker on Burma Road so I knew all hopes of seeing elk were gone. That’s OK, he was getting out in the woods early just as I was.

Anyway, after about 2.5 miles I decided to pick up the pace. (I can walk fast when the mood strikes. Once did the Bridge Run with a walking pace of 12:30. Of course I was much younger.) I had not gone more than a dozen yards when my left calf balked, and it was not the spot that had been hurting this week. Whatever. I slowed down, concentrating on keeping my stride even and as comfortable as possible.

Obviously I walked the distance but, crikey!, this is troubling. Today has been full of RICE with some drugs thrown in for good measure. I have 15 training miles left but may skip some so the leg can rest/heal more. I’m not going to lose any fitness by doing that and I may be better for it.

In the meantime, ladies and gentlemen, we shall be giving you the ballet from Act Three of tonight’s opera.
Maestro–the ballet–now!

nerves are kicking in

With the marathon in the near future, my nerves are running on full steam. I try to remind myself it’s an event not a competition. Outwardly I may agree, however, inside I’m going nuts.

As I did my eight miler Monday, my left leg seized up and I had to walk the last two miles. Then said leg made it hard to even walk normally yesterday. I iced, drugged, and compressed it and it did feel better. I walked the four miles today with my leg wrapped. It doesn’t really hurt but I am doing the same TLC for it.

I made the decision to walk all remaining training miles, of which there are 33. Doing the marathon is now simply an endurance event; I figure at least five hours. If the leg feels good, it may be quicker but I don’t anticipate that happening. Regardless, I have seven hours from start to the finish line closing. I could realistically walk 26.2 miles in that time.

Nerves are also showing themselves in the way of mindless eating (anything!) and sores on my hands. Once these sores appear, it takes about a month for them to run their course, and it’s not comfortable! The sores aren’t open, merely red, swollen, tender spots which are very sensitive (painful) to the touch. Usually on my knuckles, the sores can appear on the palm-side of my fingers too. They don’t stop me from doing anything but they sure are a huge annoyance.

This morning I got out the medals from my four previous marathons. A visual that I really can do this? Who knows? OK, I’m rambling……

1996 - Mayor’s Midnight Sun Marathon - Anchorage, AK

1998 - Trail’s End Marathon - Warrenton, OR

1999 - Trail’s End Marathon - Warrenton, OR

2001 - Newport Marathon - Newport, OR

taught by The Master

I like to think I am a good student.  When The Master speaks, I try very hard to comprehend and remember all he says.

Today I set to work building a computer work station for Jerry to use for his coaching endeavours.  Our desk CPU is seven years old, rather full, and slow.

Having recently acquired Daddy’s laptop, I utilized that unit.  I had to do some “tricky” stuff to get the monitor to work and get the laptop screen to be blank.  I knew there was a way to do it, however, I had to do a lot of trial and error to do it.  But I was able to get all aspects of the set-up working well and working properly.

Jerry can now do his work on a regular keyboard, use a mouse, view a nice flat-screen monitor, and have a printer at his beck and call.  I did have to load Office as the unit did not have the programs (Word, Excel, & Outlook) that I know Jerry will need and use.

All this reflects on The Master….my dear son Barney.  His positive influence is endless.  Thanks, Bud.

officially official

Jerry has accepted the offer to be the Astoria High girls soccer coach.   He has a dynamic former college player as his assistant, something he felt necessary.  He picked up equipment from the past coach today and seemed quite pleased.  He said it will help him get back in shape.

Local soccer camp is the week of August 10, then a week of conditioning, then two weeks of daily doubles, then school starts with practice or games every weekday.  This will continue until November.  Then we’ll start again next August……

Soccer ~ it’s a kick in the grass!

go the distance! (16 miles)

And that’s what I did, go the distance. I had no desire to go out today but obviously I did.

I walked my usual first two miles, then started running. After about 1/2 mile my left leg felt weird. With the marathon looming close on the horizon, I decided not to tempt fate and chose to walk. And walk I did….many miles. I tossed a bit of running into the mix but not enough keep track of. Let’s just say I walked well over half the distance.

I know I’ve been “off” lately, partly due to my trip to Seattle, which involved strange eating and sleeping habits. Fatigue is getting to me, though I am trying to stave it off. The coming two weeks will be focused on eating well, sleeping better, and easing my mind. Sounds like a tall order but one I must fervently try to fill.

change of scenery (20 miles scheduled, 16+ miles covered)

This may be long…..

Mom called Wednesday saying Daddy had taken a downturn in health: fluid in his lungs, unable to pick up his spoon at lunch, falling asleep at the lunch table. Mom was distraught, as she well should have been! I asked if she wanted me to come up to Seattle and she said yes.

I then packed, including all running gear, for an unknown period of time. I researched the mileage around Green Lake for Friday’s 20 miler - 7.14 times around.

I arrived at the Norse Home about 10:30 Thursday morning. I had lunch with M&D. Later that afternoon, Richard came by then Thomas. Richard visited for some time then left while Thomas stayed for dinner. As he departed, Robert arrived. He hung around for a bit then it was time to go to Sea-Tac to pick up Connie (from Spokane) and Dot (from Eugene). I drove to the airport with him. We had some time to talk things over concerning M&D. Oh, and when we were all at M&D’s, Daddy really perked up. After getting Dot and Connie, we went back to Norse Home to say hi to Mom.

Friday dawned with a run scheduled for me. I set out and walked to the lake for a warm up then the run. I was doing fine, though getting tired as expected, when I experienced something new. I had done 5 laps (14 miles) and was about 1/4 into the 6th when I started seeing “peripheral stars.” I felt fine but it was like sparklies around my iris, and it was most disconcerting. I made a conservative decision to turn around and head back to the house. (I had ID with me but nothing indicating where I “belonged” in Seattle.) I walked and the sparklies stopped about 10 minutes later. I mentioned it to Dot when I got to the house and she immediately gave me a name of the phenomenon–inner ocular migraine. So, no worries but it seemed prudent at the time to go home.

Obviously I did not do the proscribed miles for this week. Am I concerned? Not really. Had there been support along the rest of my route, I would have continued.

It’s Sunday and I am now home.  I may write about Daddy later, I may not; I don’t know. A brief note here in case I don’t. He really rallied with all of us visiting, coming down and eating meals, but we all know the end is imminent. It may be a day, a week, a month, six months but only God knows. Hospice will come when needed and I believe we have taken care of all eventualities.

pests!!! (16 miles)

Yesterday’s seasonably warm weather obviously enticed the insect population out of their shells, as it were. The flying bugs which I encountered in the forest were almost treacherous. My baseball cap was a perfect ‘trap’ for them; they’d get caught under the brim and wreak havoc with my face. I inhaled a number of them in my nose and mouth. If that wasn’t enough, they’d find their way under or between my glasses. (I wear my regular glasses and sunglasses on top of them.) Ugh, I sorely detest insects.

On a related note, the run was OK. No energy to speak of and leaden legs were hard to pick up so many times. I had HEED along the route and a water bottle stashed at mile 14; should have placed it sooner. I ran out of HEED about mile 10 and when I finally got some water, I felt much better. I’ll have to plan that better for my two remaining long runs.

I have a massage scheduled in a couple hours. This will be a deep tissue massage. I had one of those in the past and did not enjoy it at all. However, my masseuse wants to start there in hopes of loosening my tightness. It’s only 30 minutes and if it’s too much, I can always have her stop.

Getting close.

walk - 4.0
run - 12.0

the wisdom of Gandalf

I did not want to rise this morning when the alarm went off at 5:30.

I did not want to do my Pilates routine.

I did not want to lift weights.

I did not want to run the scheduled 8 miles.

As I sat gazing into my palantír, the words of Gandalf whispered to me, “Do not then stumble at the end of the road.”

Heeding his words, I did all of today’s needed work.

I have trained hard and must not stumble. The end of this particular road is a mere four weeks and five days away.