Friday, August 28, 2015

Tendinitis tightrope

So far, so good.

I'm finally starting to feel like I'm back. I'm running 6 days per week again instead of the paltry 3 times I had been through June and July while that whatever-it-is tendon in my right hip/groin/leg was being a jerk. The time off seems to have helped, and while I can't say it's perfect it's definitely one hell of a lot better than it was.

By Tuesday of this week the weather had mercifully cooled off a bit from its former "swamp on Mercury" conditions, and combined with possibly having regained a teensy bit of fitness by drudging through feeling horribly fat, beat up and out of shape last week, I finally had a run during which I could actually relax.

I even started enjoying myself a little.

I successfully managed to run 37km last week, after months of running 20km or less (generally much less) per week. I'm on track to add to that this week, which means I'm getting within earshot of the 50km per week I generally like to maintain year-round.

I'm faced with a dilemma, though. 

I have two ultras scheduled for the month of October - the first of which is a 50k that is a paltry (and freakin' terrifying) 7 weeks away. The temptation is to pile on the mileage in an attempt to get my endurance up to snuff for an event of that magnitude.

I do that, however, and I stand a really good chance of re-injuring myself. It's not just the healing tendon I have to worry about: none of my body is accustomed to running long distance right now, all the way from my joints and soft tissues to the callouses I need to rebuild on my feet. It would be horrible to come back from one injury and end up with another because I imprudently ran too much while still trying to re-acclimatize.

Am I going to get this right? Who knows? All I can do is try to listen to my body and keep my fingers crossed.

Friday, August 21, 2015


I ran the race of my life back in May, setting a massive 50k PR at Sulphur Springs in the best running shape of my life.

Then I got injured.

Then we went paddling.

Then we went motorcycle touring.

While I'd been training in between all of these things, I don't think I'd managed to run more than 20km in a week since the end of May. I did get fairly aggressive with cycling for a bit there and continued to swim, but I was only running 3 times per week and fairly short distances to try to let the damage heal.

Then the two vacations came along, and everything ground to a halt. I was out of the pool and off the bike for 11 days, and I didn't run at all for 2 full weeks.


I started running again last Thursday, just as a patch of really hot and humid weather set in. I'm sure I'd be slow and a sweaty, puffing mess even if I was still in the shape I was in May.

Unfortunately, I'm not. My fitness has declined and my weight has risen.

This is not the right way 'round for this time of year.

So if you see some poor, chubby soul puffing like a steam engine and pouring a river of sweat as she struggles to keep from being passed by snails out on the trails around Cambridge, spare me a wave, will you?

Warning: trail users in the first 5 rows will get wet.

Friday, August 14, 2015

Motorcycle Touring on the Blue Ridge Parkway

We left on Sunday, August 2nd and rode over 1,000km through Ontario, New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Virginia to get to the starting point at the North end.

Even though it's technically the "foothills", the views are impressive right off the hop.

We camped our way along, spending 2 full days (and parts of 2 others) riding from mile 0 to mile 458 of the parkway.

We got soaked with rain on our way to the highest elevation accessible via the road, and got to contemplate the wisdom of riding big, metal things on mountaintops through a thunderstorm when lightning crashed down just to one side of the road ahead of us.

But still camped that night with one hell of a view over our fireplace - at 5,000ft just Southwest of Maggie Valley, NC.

Eight days and 3,409.1km / 2,118.3mi later after: riding through North Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee, Kentucky and West Virginia in one day; spending an interminable amount of time staring at Ohio cornfields and negotiating construction on I75 into Michigan; piercing a pair of nipples (long story) and fostering a pair of very sore bums, we were home again.

The memories, though, will remain with us always.