Tuesday, August 31, 2010

Lil Man's Photos

OK, just for you....Here are the photos that Lil Man took while enjoying some Special Meme time on Sunday afternoon.
The Peanut

Not bad for a 2 yr old

Enjoying the afternoon

Trying to capture the Lake

That is a little better

I would say he did a pretty good job taking these photos.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Special Time with Lil Man

This past weekend I was able to spend some "special meme" time with  my nephew Lil Man. I had a great afternoon/evening planned for us. The only problem was I was waiting on him to wake up from his nap. He finally awoke and off we went to play with Trailmomma and the Peanut out at Beals. The entire drive there he kept asking when we were getting ice cream, because I had mentioned that we would get ice cream as our special treat. It wouldn't be special meme time without the the special treat. Right?

At Beals, he wanted to put his swim suit on to play in the sand.

The Peanut sharing with Lil Man!

Hoping around like frogs, those two had fun running around and playing and then crying and then playing. It was fun had by all.


After Beals we headed home and he enjoyed is special dinner. Who wouldn't want chicken nuggets, they are the best. Of course on the drive home he asked about getting ice cream, and where everyone went. After dinner we played outside with the dogs and enjoyed the cooler weather before heading back in to dig into some ice cream cake.

Riding his "new" bike and towing his Jeep!

Finally the moment he had been waiting for all weekend. Ice Cream

I always enjoy my special time with Lil Man. It seems that recently I don't see him that often as we are always crossing paths with our comings and goings. He was all smiles this afternoon when he woke up from his nap and wanted to spend some more special time with me. I can't wait for that happen. This weekend is cousin's birthday party so we are all looking forward to the pool party. Thanks Lil Man for the incredible special meme time. Can't wait to do it again.

To Stronger Runs Less Pain--I Hope--

Have you ever had one of those weekends where what you did or accomplished should not have been doable. That was how my weekend went. It was amazing, remarkable, enjoyable, and today painful. Saturday I ran 20 miles with Trailmomma and that run felt great for me. I was in a fantastic mood and my spirits were high. Then the most amazing thing happened. I went to sleep that night and when I awoke I wasn't in pain---OK I should say not as much pain as I would have expected to be in. So I did it again, I ran 20 miles again and this time I ran it 10 minutes faster then the previous day.

How is this possible when on Friday I was a broken Pigeon I ask myself?

What have I done differently?

The answers I wish I had, but I do not. I never thought I would run 20 miles back to back and still have the legs the following day. I have no pain in my legs in fact they feel great.

 Again I ask myself; How can this be? Maybe I should just enjoy it for what it is.

Of course come Monday morning I am in so much pain that I am about to cry from it.I knew it was too good to be true. The pain has woken me up every 30 minutes and every time I breath it hurts even more. Maybe I can hold my breath and never breath again, yeah not an option. I tried trust me.

Eventually I am able to roll out of bed, but even that hurts and then I am able to get to work. Why not go in early since I can't sleep. I managed 4 hours of sleep last night. As my day continues the pain dissipates and all is well again. My legs are in no pain, it is just my rib cage from front to back.

After my long day at work I headed over to my appointment with Dr. Chu from Elite Spinal and Sports Care . He worked on my entire left side and found some new tender spots in my collar bone area, my left shoulder felt like it was going to pop out and he worked on stretching out my hip area to help eliminate some of pain.

 I am able to run this week, and that is what I plan on doing. Today of course is my REST DAY! I believe that Dr. Chu treatment is helping me along with my weekly massages from Lily. Looking forward to my run tomorrow evening with Trailmomma. Here is to hoping the runs get stronger and the pain gets less.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

20 miles come and go

It is very interesting how I was able to complete 20 miles today. Yesterday I was a broken Pigeon with no hopes of being able to run. Yesterday was a busy day for me. I spent my entire shift pushing out 10 pallets of dry grocery work load. That means bending, lifting and pretty much being in pain for the entire shift. After work I had to hustle home and change my clothes and fly to Dr. Chu office over at Elite Spinal and Sports Care.

Once there he was quit surprised that I actually took his advise and got an x-ray of my chest/ribs. The results even surprised him more. My doctor e-mailed me and told me the results were negative for a fracture of dislocation. I wish I had a camera to get his expression when I told him that. Of course though I am going to get my x-rays to him so that he can take a look since he knows where my pain is. He asked me if I was planning on running this weekend? My obvious response was YES! I have a 20 miler scheduled, I could have opted to do 31 but this is me being good.He laughed and told me to use my best judgement on this run.

After my appointment I had to rush across town to see Lily who was going to give me a massage. I think the combination of Dr. Chu and Lily will bring me back to normal. By the time I got home I was completely exhausted. I was mentally drained from being on the go since 3 a.m.

I awoke at 4am Saturday morning, but wasn't planning on meeting Trailmomma until 6:30. So I had a few hours to kill. In the end we didn't meet up until 7:00 a.m. The wind was howling, it was dark, and it was cold. It is August right? I contemplated wearing sleeves but decided against it.

I was in a great mood. My spirits were high, I was feeling good in minimal pain and I was focused and ready to rock this 20 mile run. Trailmomma though was feeling the exact opposite and was not looking forward to running 20 miles in the cold, on minimal sleep, and on a achy tummy. I knew she wasn't feeling well because she wasn't talking much, it was a good thing I had a few stories to share.

The miles for me ticked by we saw a ton of running groups, bikes, and walkers. Everyone was out braving the elements. Soon enough though we had reached mile 6 woohoo!!! I was excited because it seemed like those 6 miles flew by, but for trailmomma they were really slow and she was hoping to be at mile 9 already. We stopped a few times (3) once at 3, and then again will I can't remember where I lost count. She was having some serious stomach issues. But I was OK with stopping it offered me a chance to stretch and tie my shoes.

Time for me to stretch

Porta Potties are Trailmomma approved

I can not believe how great I was feeling. I was still having shallow breathing and it hurt but other then that my legs felt strong, they weren't sluggish, my hamstrings had finally loosened up and my back was feeling loose also. All good signs of good things to come I hope.

As we reached our turn around I was feeling pretty good and Trailmomma was actually feeling better. On the way back we only had to stop one more time for me to umm stretch lets just say. After the last stop things really started to turn for me.

We have to stay local to see Deer!

Umm sorry trailmomma, I didn't know they were there

 I started struggling a little bit, but Trailmomma was feeling great. She was chatting away. With only 5 miles to go I was feeling this run. Every step I felt it in my chest and I found relief by applying pressure. At one point I had a stabbing pain go ripping through my back and I had to stop. It almost caused me to drop to my knees. We were so close that I didn't want to walk. I walked when I felt like I needed to, we were battling some fierce head winds. 20 miles came so quickly it was hard to tell that we had just run them.

I am really relieved that I was able to get this run, I needed it mentally. My body held up for the most part and only time will tell how I feel tomorrow. In a few short weeks (4) I am doing the Sierra Nevada Double. I have thought about changing to the marathon, but I am bullheaded. I am feeling good right now. I don't have as much pain as I normally do after a long run so I am thinking that the treatments with Dr. Chu are helping and the massages from Lily are helping also. Looking forward to rest of this weekend in hopes of it being less painful then past weekends.
Lil Man helping his daddy mow the yard last weekend!

I got home and he was so happy he put on my pack and ran around the house

One day I am sure we will run together!

Friday, August 27, 2010

Not so Pathetic Thursday

Yesterday morning as I was getting ready for work, I seriously had some doubts about the run with Trailmomma later that evening. I was hurting above average for some reason. Maybe it had something to do with the fact that at work the previous day I was frantically trying to get my expanded stock room together and ready for our dry grocery trailer that was coming in Thursday night. Without the stock room we were going to be out of room fast. I was busy lifting, bending, scooping, climbing and having fun. I didn't realize how much I missed my stock room until I was actually working in it again. It actually put a smile on my face and cheered me up just thinking about how great it is going to be to get this done and turned over for my team.

As I walked, correction hobbled into work I was pretty sure I wasn't going to run. Only it was 4 am in the morning and to early to text Trailmomma and before I knew it my day was complete and it was time to get ready for our run. Luckily with all of my activity that day I seemed to have loosened up though it was a very painful process.

I drove to Rio and waited for Trailmomma to show up in her car. Only when I saw her she was running. She had decided to run the 3 miles or so from her house to Rio. I quickly gathered my things and jumped out of the car which by the way surprised me and off we went walking to the trail. Usually I can't do anything quickly. I was feeling pretty good and now I was really looking forward to this run, maybe it wont be as pathetic as my last attempt. I was in a hurry to get running for fear that what this feeling would go away just as quickly as it came.

Off we went, Trailmomma was catching me up on her day, meanwhile I was focused on keeping a pretty steady pace, a pace that we together haven't run in a long time because I haven't been able to. I kept the lead with Trailmomma close on my heels. I could hear her and that motivated me to keep pushing, she reminded me of our 20 miler on Saturday and not to push to hard. But my body was feeling good or I should say my body was allowing me to do this and I knew I would be paying for it later.

As we were nearing our turn around spot a biker was approaching on the pavement and I saw him moving his arm to the side. I just thought he was signalling the other riders on the road about us runners up ahead. Nope I was wrong he was signalling for us to get off the pavement. I scooted over and was a little dumbfounded that it had happened. I just laughed it off but it seemed to really upset Trailmomma.

On our way back in Trailmomma was talking and I was zoning out pushing myself to stay ahead of her when out of nowhere this biker swerved and almost hit her. I was shocked and couldn't believe what I saw, I actually had to ask Trailmomma if he was trying to hit her. YES!!!!! Immediately I hear her yelling, and I see her waving her arms about. I have never seen this side of her. WOW!!!! The biker of course didn't turn around but if he did I would have had her back. I believe that the bike trail is a multi use trail and runners can be on the pavement. But what do I know.

Trailmomma was flustered or I should say angry. I was still in shock that I saw the Jersey Girl come out of her. We finished our run and I gave Trailmomma a ride home as she was completely spent from the days activities. I felt great after this run. I was holding a pretty steady pace and it only hurt a little bit. Actually it hurt alot. Each shallow breath I took, each step, did I mention each breath but I was able to complete this run.

I was advised by Dr. Chu to get an x-ray to rule out any sort of fracture or dislocation of my ribs earlier this week. I did get the x-ray and the next step is to get the x-rays so that Dr. Chu can look at them. he has narrowed down where the ribs are most tender (painful) and it is the number 5 rib.

I also had a massage this evening and Lily worked her magic on me. She was able to loosen my back up which was a huge relief. I did for the first time actually shed some tears because my upper back was so tender she couldn't even touch it and when she did I about jumped off the table. Over the past 4 weeks she has kept me together and helped me to be able to get through my weeks. Thank you so much.

Tomorrow I have a 20 miler run with Trailmomma. We are keeping it local, one because I don't want to be in the middle of nowhere and not be able to get back in, two she has to be at work later that evening. So it is a win for both us.

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

Get 'er done

I can’t believe it is only Tuesday. I really wish I could close my eyes and when I open them it will be Friday. This week so far has mentally drained me which has then depleted me physically. It has been a challenging week so far at work, but I am bearing down and as construction world would say “get 'er done.”

With that in mind I attempted a 6 mile run tonight with Trailmomma which in fact turned into me walking/running for only 5 miles in this hot August evening with temperatures in the 100’s.

I arrived at our spot by Rio nice and early. All week I have been running late and tonight that wasn’t going to be the case. As I was standing because sitting caused me to stiffen up I received a text from Trailmomma that she was running late, Vans was stuck in traffic. No big deal I wasn’t in a hurry.

While I waited I stretched hoping to loosen up my back which has been stiff all day. I also noticed that I have bruises along my rib cage from my chest to my back on both sides where Dr. Chu from Elite Spinal and Sports Care had worked on my yesterday. It was a little uncomfortable and I defiantly noticed it during this run. I also noticed that I couldn’t take a deep breath. It felt like something was catching just behind my right shoulder blade and then intense pain would penetrate from my back to my chest. I had to take shallow breaths and pray that I didn’t sneeze or yawn or cough. My legs were also pretty tight, I couldn’t stride out like I wanted to and my gluts were tight. Probably due to this past weekend’s long runs and taking yesterday off.

I must sound like a wreck but let me just say that the pain I have been feeling is nothing compared to the pain I have felt before I started seeing Dr. Chu.

I had to walk around mile 1.5 and I told trailmomma to go on and get her speed workout in without me, I would be fine. Off Trailmomma went and I was happy that she was able to get some quality miles in but I was also sad that I couldn’t run with her today. But I knew if I pushed it anymore then I already am I would be pushing myself to hard. As I walked along the American River noticed that we were pretty much the only runners out today. It must have been too hot for everyone else. I ran when I could, but it was pretty pathetic.

As I ran along I ran into Trailmomma and turned around roughly a little over 2.5 miles for me and 3 for her. We ran together for a bit and then she took off again and we planned on meeting up at the bathroom because the status on her pee bar was full. (Just for you Coach Nikon) –It’s from the movie Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. - A very funny movie.

Overall Trailmomma was able to get in some quality miles I suffered through 5 miles of walking and running and we made plans to do it all over again on Thursday. Yeah!!!! Usually I am wreck on Wednesday and by Thursday everything miraculously clears up and I can run and then Friday I can’t move. In the afternoons on Friday I get a massage from Lily and she gets me back into running form so I am able to knock out my long runs over the weekend and then the entire process repeats itself without fail.

This Friday I also go back and see Dr. Chu so he can reassess me and continue working on my rib cage which seems to be causing most of my problems. Maybe the heat had something to with my performance today and maybe because I am mentally drained and physically drained at work that also caused my poor performance. I am not sure but it could also be a combination of all three. My new motto for the week “Get 'er Done” and that is just what I plan on doing one way or another.

Monday, August 23, 2010

Back to Nice and Easy

Isn’t it amazing how quickly weekends come and go and how slow the work week seems to drag on? That is how this weekend was for me, it flew by. Saturday I ran 12 miles and held a nice 9:30 pace for those 12 miles. I paid the price though, because later on that day I was in some serious pain. My chest was killing me, I couldn’t move without excruciating pain. It felt like someone dropped a weight on my chest and crushed me.

As the day wore on, the pain increased. Luckily I was able to relax the rest of the afternoon because my brother in law was making my sister and I our birthday dinner. Since the rest of the family was sick and couldn’t get together he made us this awesome dinner. Steak, shrimp, artichoke, and mashed potatoes. It was awesome and hit the spot as I was famished from my run earlier in the day.

As I awoke Sunday morning, I was feeling stiff, but nothing like how I was feeling Saturday night. I decided I would head out and try to run with some of my friends who were planning on running 15 miles. I wasn’t too sure how far I was going to go, or if my body would loosen up, but I thought I would give it a shot. I find it interesting how this injury just flares up when ever and then disappears just as quickly.

The first 4 miles were really uncomfortable. I was short of breath because of my chest wall pain and my body was taking it’s time in warming up. My friend noticed how uncomfortable I was and noticed my shallow breathing. But as the miles ticked on I began to feel better and with that my pace quickly picked up. By mile 6 I knew I would be running 15.

At the turn around I took in a Gu and s-cap and started back down. I flew for the next few miles holding the lead. It felt great to open it up. I was holding 8:30 pace for a few miles which has been rare for me so I was excited. But just as quickly as that pace came it slowly dwindled away. My back felt like it was locking up and my breathing became shallow again. But I was still holding a 9:00 min pace and occasionally dipped to a 9:30. As I hit the 15 mile marker I was struggling catching my breath, not because I ran to hard but because it hurt. I walked it off and the rest of my body was feeling strong. I didn’t have any back pain after this run; I wasn’t doubled over from the pain I was feeling like I normally felt after a good solid effort for 15 miles. That totally surprised me.

For the week I managed to log 39 miles which is pretty good considering I have only been running 4 days a week. I can only imagine how many miles I would have logged if I ran 6 days. Monday is my normal rest day and I plan on resting, I had an appointment with Dr. Chu from Elite Spinal and Sports Care.

Dr. Chu worked on my left side rib cage which was extremely point tender. I also told him that it really hurts my chest and back when I sneeze or cough. I haven’t told anyone that. He may want for me to get a chest x-ray to rule out a fracture in my rib cage if this pain continues. I am hoping I don’t have a fractured rib. This is the second time I have seen him and the first time he was able to eliminate some of my pain which is probably why I was able to run those long runs.

 A majority of my tenderness lies between the number 4 and 5 rib and he traced it all the way from my chest to my back. Pretty amazing I think. I am able to run tomorrow and then e-mail him with how the run went and I have another appointment lined up for Friday. I am suppose to be smart about my running and play it safe when need be.

 Looking forward to tomorrows run with Trailmomma. I will probably take it easy and on the turnaround she will incorporate some speed work. It is suppose to be 100 degrees tomorrow. What is going on with this crazy weather? First the low 80’s all weekend and now this.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Drinks and Running followed by more Running

After resting on Wednesday I met Trailmomma over at Rio for our 6 mile run. I am still supposed to be keeping it nice and easy and resting which I did on Wednesday. I have a had a very busy week so far at work and it even included letting a t.m. go. Needless to say I was feeling mentally exhausted and desperately in need of some time away from work. The good news is I am a week ahead of my remodel schedule.

Playing with Lil Man...It was his idea to dress up

Trailmomma and I were both early for our run, maybe it had something to do with the fact that we both wanted to go out after our run and get a much deserved drink at La Casa. The run started off great or that is how I remember it. I was feeling pretty good at the beginning but then that slowly changed as the miles wore on. As we hit 1.5 miles I was wishing and secretly praying that trailmomma would need to use the restroom. But not today she just kept on going. On we went, as we hit our turn around spot I needed to stretch because I was in some obvious pain.

After my quick stretch and Trailmomma’s photo shoot for Fleet Feet/ Fair Oaks Roseville we headed back. On the way back in I needed to walk a bit and I told Trailmomma to go ahead without me I would catch up. And that is how the last 3 miles went, she would surge ahead and I would come along rest take her photo an then repeat as needed. This was often. As I hit the six mile marker I was relieved to be done running finally. Now don’t get me wrong, I enjoy running, but I also enjoy running more when it is pain free.

Yeah!! Six miles done and now off to La Casa for margaritas.Those drinks tasted so good and I wonder if we could make it a regular thursday thing? Thank you trailmomma for the awesome birthday present, I can’t wait to use it and I love the card. That is so true.

Lil Man couldn't wait to help me open it

Awesome!!! Can't wait to use it. New bladder with top closure.

This weekend Trailmomma is in Tahoe, and that means I am on my own. I made plans to run with a friend of mine and told her I only wanted to do 12 nice and easy. Only as Friday came I didn’t know if I was going to be able to run 12 miles at all. My back flared up and it was a good thing that I had an appointment to see Lily my massage therapist. She worked on me and was able to get me into running form. It was touch and go though because I couldn’t lie on my back without pain and she had to prop my legs up. She did her magic like always and when I woke up Saturday morning I was feeling strong and ready to go. But if I had been asked on Friday to go for a run on Saturday I would have said no, that is how wrecked I felt.

As I was getting ready to meet my friend for our easy 12 miles I quickly realized that when I started my laundry I had left my wallet in my pocket. Everything was soaked. Not a good way to start and then I was 15 min. late for our run. That is totally unlike me; usually I am early and ready to go.

As we took off I didn’t have any aches or pains which is rare for me. As the miles ticked away my friend asked me if 9:30 pace was taking it slow? “Ummm” was my response, then I explained that if my body is able to run that pace without any pain I should let it. I have been running nice and easy now for 3 weeks and it felt great to increase my effort but the weird thing about it was, it felt effortless.

As we hit our turn around spot I was surprised at how quickly it came. On the run back in I was still feeling strong but then with 3 miles to go I started to get really tight. I didn’t want to slow down and pushed on. I pushed myself those last 3 miles to keep my original pace because I needed that pace more mentally than anything else.

The past 3 weeks or so have taken a lot out of me mentally and physically. I was beginning to dread to each run and with that any movement. I know that I should probably have kept it slower then that but my body was feeling good and I knew I could push the last 3 miles.

As we finished my friend was laughing at me because I was really tight and walking funny. But hey, I did it. Once I got home I decided I should roll on my foam roller for a bit to try and loosen me up and I even did some stretches she showed me. That seemed to help, I am still walking a little funny but I am sure it will clear up by tomorrow.

Showing me how to roll properly.

Lil Man wanted to take a picture..I think I need a haircut

Tomorrow I am not sure what I am planning on running, but I should probably keep it nice and easy. Today I am resting and just enjoying this cooler weather we are having. I find it strange that it is late August and the forecast only calls for temperatures to reach the 80’s usually this time of year it is a boiling 100 degrees. But I am not complaining, I enjoy running in cooler weather anyways.

Enjoying the afternoon with Lil Man who made a roller coaster for everyone to enjoy!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Slowly Back On Track

Yesterday I met Trailmomma for our usually 6 mile run out at Rio. I was actually excited to be going on this run because on Monday I had seen Dr. Chu from Elite Spinal and Sports Care. He worked on me for an hour to help relieve my pain throughout my upper body and lower back. He worked some magic on me because I was feeling better, not 100% better but better then I have felt in 3 weeks or so. It had been so long since I have been in pain that I have forgotten how it felt to not be in pain. Back to our run on Tuesday....

Before our run Coach Nikon called me and left a message saying do not run fast, take it nice and slow. He also had texted me earlier in the day. Then come to find out later he had also called Trailmomma and told her the same thing. Ahhh he knows me so well, because if I could have I would have opened up a little bit just to see how I would hold up. But I didn't we kept it nice and easy. Thank you for caring Coach Nikon.

I arrived a little before Trailmomma and she showed up just a few minutes later. I was all smiles which over the last few weeks that was not the case. In fact I dreaded those runs because I knew how I was going to feel during and after. We started our run and it felt really good, I was only in a little bit of discomfort but not as much as in the previous weeks. As we ran along I "suggested" to trailmomma that she might want to use the bathroom at the mile and half mark. She did....Thank You!!!! While she was in bathroom I stretched out a little bit, my back was getting tight, my chest wall was getting tight, my breathing was getting labored and painful.

After my little stretch break, we continued on our way. My pace was slow, real slow. We hit our turnaround point and I again stretched a little bit. I was getting really tight in my back and chest wall which was causing difficulties breathing. Every time I breathed in it caused pain in my back and chest wall and when I released my breath it also caused pain. So I had to take shorter quicker breaths to adapt to this. Probably not a good thing if I am changing the way I breath to stop the pain.

Overall though this run my body was feeling better. Yes, it tightened up but today I wasn't in as much pain as I usually have been in. I have another treatment on Monday and on Friday I am getting a massage. Today I plan on resting......did everyone read that.....I AM RESTING....Trailmomma and Coach Nikon did you catch that I am resting today Wednesday.

Thursday I am meeting Trailmomma for our run. Probably nothing to hard again keeping it nice and easy. She is also heading out of town to Tahoe so Saturday I am on my own for my long run. That is if I even do a long run.

Monday, August 16, 2010

Relief at Last

It has been about 3 weeks now since I have been suffering from some very random injuries. In those 3 weeks I don't think not a moment went by when I wasn't in some sort of pain or hobbling around because I couldn't walk. But at long last I knew I had to do something about it. Even though my friend trailmomma kept telling me to see a doctor weeks ago. My pain was getting so severe that I was crying Sunday afternoon because I couldn't move, I couldn't breath without pain, and every time I did move I was in excruciating pain.

I made an appointment with Dr. Chu from Elite Spinal and Sports Care. Trailmomma had recommended them and I am so thankful that I finally listened to her. As chance would be Dr. Chu had a cancellation today which meant he could see me right away. Awesome, because I needed some relief fast. He spent a full hour working on me, getting my back to loosen up, putting my #2 rib back in place and realigning my neck and back. He also made time to explain the whys behind everything he was doing. Let me just say that I hobbled in there and when I left I was walking normal and I still am even after sitting for a bit.

He did let me know that I seemed to have high threshold for pain. Which I knew because it took 3 weeks for me to see anyone. He also explained to me that my right side was causing all my problems. My lat. muscles were pulling on my neck muscles which caused the stiff neck, which in turn pulled on my gluts and was causing that excruciating pain and finally after all that he explained to me that my #2 rib had basically popped out of place which is why it was higher then the others and that was causing my difficulty with breathing and chest wall pain. I sound like a wreck.

OMG!!! Is all I kept thinking. He fixed me up, put my rib back in place, loosened up my gluts, and aligned my neck and back. I only wish that I would have seen him sooner. I have a follow up appointment next Monday.

Tomorrow is Tuesday and my normal day to run with trailmomma. We plan on doing the usual 6 miles. Dr. Chu even encouraged me to run to see how I felt and to see how the treatment was working. That is the great thing, they will work with you to keep you training and in shape all the while treating you, unless of course it is not worth the risk. So far so good for me. I will know more tomorrow when I go and run 6 miles.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

Adventure in Foresthill

Earlier this week, Coach Nikon wanted to know if Trailmomma and I would be interested in running from Foresthill to drivers flat which is part of the Western States 100 course. I of course wanted to run this again. Back in June we both ran this as part of a three day weekend of trail running. Only I wasn’t nor was Coach Nikon too sure I would be able to make it due to some injuries I have been suffering with over the past three weeks.

On Friday I had an appointment to see his wife Yoda who is a Certified Massage Therapist, to have her work her magic on me. I hobbled in and was almost in tears from the pain. She worked her magic on me and got me into running form for Saturday. She also told me my entire body minus my arms was swollen and tender. As a backup plan for Saturday just in case I had to bale on the run once we got started Coach Nikon advised that I drive my car up to Foresthill and if I had to turn around I would be able to. Sounds like a great idea.

I woke up super earlier Saturday morning at 4am just to be sure I would be able to get loose enough to run. My other concern was the 40min. commute up to our car pool spot at Drivers Flat. In order for me to make it that far I put on mineral ice on my back and neck to keep me loose. It worked because after driving up there I felt like I could run the entire distance. I met Trailmomma, Coach Nikon and Miss P. and we all jumped into my car for the short drive to our starting point. We were all earlier and started running before the sun had come up.

Coach Nikon and his Charlie Brown shirt and CIM scarf

A enthusiastic Trailmomma

The last time I ran this trail I really enjoyed it and today was going to be no different as long as my back held together and I could descend and climb. The first part of the trail is a rocky descent and it is very hard to find a rhythm. I took my time knowing that one false step and I could be hobbling back to the car. So far so good, our group was really enjoying this run. Miss P and Coach Nikon took the lead and Trailmomma and I took up the rear. I was fine with that. I knew I didn’t want to push too hard but take it easy and enjoy this run and the miles.
Sun cresting over the horizon

Down we go

As we ran down I knew at some point we would have some climbs coming our way. It felt really good on my legs to change things up and start climbing.

The look from behind. Still Climbing

As we crested our first climb we immediately had to descend. Miss. P and Coach Nikon took off which was fine.

Break Dancing, I think? Actually I wanted to get a photo and she slipped

As trailmomma and I were nearing the bottom there was Coach Nikon waiting for us. One of the many great things about running with Coach Nikon is he wants me to run my pace. So if he is blazing ahead he will turn around tell he me meets back up with me so as not to lose anyone. Awesome, love it, works out great because everyone gets a great run in.

Crouching Tiger Hidden Dragon, beware of the man in the bushes

As we hiked the next hill I took in GU and an s-cap because I was feeling pretty sluggish. At some points my legs were fine and full of life and at other points I had nothing left in them.

one of many hills. Go Miss P.

 The next huge descent we had I really like, it is about a mile and a half long and the first part is very technical but then it becomes very run able. It is here that I took the lead from trailmomma and opened up. Only, the only reason I took the lead was because my back had locked up and I was having trouble keeping my legs under me. It felt like at any moment I was going to go down so I gambled and flew down the hill.

Trailmomma making her way down

What I still had to run down


As I reached the bottom there were Miss P and Coach Nikon waiting for us. It is here that I confessed to them that I was in some pain and Coach Nikon helped me out. He dug is elbow into my rear to try and give me some relief and then he worked some magic on my back. My back was as stiff as a board which was making it hard to run. Thanks Coach Nikon that helped a lot.

Coach Nikon working it, trailmomma doubled over from laughter

The next section is filled with switch back after switch back after switch back. As we started the descent we had to stop so that we could do a little trail maintenance. A downed tree had almost taken Coach Nikon out.

Great job Miss P.

Tree wrangler

After this descent we came upon 6 min. hill. This is called that because the top runners in Western States can run this hill in 6 min. Maybe one day that will be me but for now I hiked most if not all of it.

On the ridge line approaching 6 min. hill

Making our way! Watch out for the deer

This is how it is done! At 6 min hill

Just keep climbing

Trailmomma on 6 min hill. No Problem

I am so far behind!

At the top of 6 min. hill we had a impromptu photo shoot and then continued on our way.

JC Penny Pose: Watch

The Famous muscle pose!

 I at this point was still hurting in my lower back and the climbs and descents were getting tougher and tougher with each step.

Avery's Pond anyone?

That is where we want to be

We were fast approaching Ruck A Chucky were I knew I could get in the cool river and sooth my aching body. But before we could we had to climb the fire road. It wasn’t as brutal as last time. In fact this entire run seemed much faster than last time. Despite the pain I was in I was really enjoying the run and the mental challenges it brings.
Making our way to Ruck A Chucky

It's just over there!

At last the river. Coach Nikon the entertainer

Miss P. tree wrangler and spider charmer

Trailmomma the motivator

Me, the injured Pigeon!

Awesome group!

The last 3 miles of this run is a brutal climb up a service road with hardly any shade. Trailmomma and I hiked it together and when we could we ran. As we were nearing the top Coach Nikon was coming back down for us. He hiked and ran the rest of the way in with us.

What animal am I? (a) elephant

"Y" going crazy on the hike out

"M" ohh no it's contagious

Stop in the name of.....trailmomma busted out in song for this shoot

Hey, I can see our cars

Safely across the highway!

Overall we ran 18+ miles in 4:19 min, counting all the stops along the way. Everyone at the end was all smiles including me. At the beginning I wasn’t very confident that I would make it but I surprised myself and actually ended up having a pretty good run. It is amazing how running with great friends can improve any moments.
All smiles at the end


What great friends!