Sunday, August 03, 2008

legs legs damn legs

I was a little queasy and uneasy about this weekends 20 mile run; queasy because I don't like to eat breakfast at certain hours of the day, and the unease I've been feeling about this run for the last two weeks is because, among other things, some of the muscles in my legs are exhausted by the training schedule.

My right hamstring recovered fully (WHEW) during our river trip so, of course, the first day back I ran ill-advised intervals between every fifth telephone pole: 12345FAST... 12345SLOW... The next day the mutiny began.

Or course, I have my secret weapons: ice, massage, and icemassage and using them, with occasional heat, I somehow managed to turn the corner and begin healing while still on the road, running everyday. But 20 miles while recovering is not the same as being ready to run 20 miles. One is stupid, the other is just senseless in a meaningful way.

Anyway, I was so focused on this 20 miler I went into the 15 miles I ran last Saturday feeling rather cavalier, sandwiched between the more daunting 18 and 20 as it was. I did become exhausted, and chastened to remember that 15 miles is still a rather far distance and should be undertaken with a bit more respect. Just when my spirits were sagging still two mile from home my angel-faced sister-in-law came running down the road toward me, having found my route on the computer and back-tracked to find me kicking rocks and scuffing soles. She ran back home all the way with me... oh my what a darling, restorative girl! I will miss her terribly when she leaves next week.

This week I left to run my 20 miles queasy, a feeling that stuck with me through at least the first hour on the road. I felt my strongest at mile 10, well-heeled and determined but the weakness in my calf crept in just a few miles later. More then weakness, the muscle began to tear. At 18 and a half miles I felt a fiber pop like in the movies when your hero is hanging over a cliff by a rope and one coil of the rope snaps and but he is kept barely there by the remaining twines... THAT WAS TOTALLY ME! It happened in my left calf muscle just above my achilles tendon and when it actually popped (at least that is what it reallyreally felt like) I stopped and broke down in tears which is hard to do when you are panting and you heart is beating 146 beats a minute and suddenly this silly function hijacks all the action.

I limpwalked for half a block, to almost exactly where Anita met me the week before, then decided that more then a calf muscle, I wanted my 20 miles so I limpran the rest of the way which involved keeping the lower left leg precisely taut with neither a flex nor a stretch and I rolled home alone. Dry tear tracks on my face.

I crossed my finish line exhausted and trying to hold off, yet sustain my emotional breakdown to share with Clark. I was limping along my cooldown when I heard him yell HERE SHE COMES and as I looked up, he dash away. A moment later he came out the door, across the yard and halfway down the block sprinting toward me with a towel and a tall glass of cold water. He ushered me into the house, pointing out that it had been cleaned toptobottom, pulled me a chair, untied my shoes, peeled off my socks, fed me grapes and protien shakes, plied me with icepacks and kisses. I have more secret weapons then I ever let on.

So now I am going to take two days off. Two full days off because even though the guilt and recriminations will haunt me, my legs will thank me. I've got nothing else to stand on.

/insert reputation joke here

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