A week in the life

It's been a pretty random week or so.  Not much training to speak of since my foot's been bothering me.  I did go to the doctor last Monday, and she said my problem was likely Achilles tendinitis.  Prescription: rest, ice, stretch.  I've been pretty much doing that, and it's definitely improving.  She also said that I can run my marathon on the first and that, while I may aggravate the injury, I'm not going to make it significantly worse by running on it.  Yea!  It would have really disappointed me to have to skip the marathon after I've been training for it for so long.  On the other hand, any thoughts I had of potential goal times are pretty much gone.  I'm going to have to be satisfied with finishing....this time.

You want to know a secret?  Just this past week in an email I typed these words: "my next marathon..."  Shhhh...don't tell my husband.  I'm pretty sure that he thinks I'm going to get this out of my system and then no more of these crazy four hour runs.  I'll break it to him gently.  I'm sure I'll have to sweeten the news a little, but I think he'll be happy with the trade-off.  What the heck, I'm already losing sleep with these early morning runs...what's a little less, right?

Since I haven't been running much, what have I been doing?

Ummm...eating birthday cake.  On Monday we celebrated my annual 29th birthday.  Well, actually, we celebrated with the family on Sunday.  My gifts: a bike rack for my car, running/biking books, two running shirts and the shorts I'll be wearing in my marathon, and money for my road bike.  Do these people know me or what? :D  Since we had the party on Sunday, I wasn't expecting anything for Monday.  In fact, I went to a tri-club meeting and then had to do some shopping for school on the way back.  When I got home, the lights suddenly went out.  Huh?

I came in to this:

If J wasn't wearing camouflage, you could see him in this picture. :)

While I was gone, Jeff, N, and J had filled the living room with balloons.  Every one of the balloons had a message written on it.  Here are a few of my favorites:

Every one of my birthday balloons filling the living room had a msg on itEvery one of my birthday balloons filling the living room had a msg on it. This is one of my favorites.  :)Every one of my birthday balloons filling the living room had a msg on it. This is one of my favorites. Every one of my birthday balloons filling the living room had a msg on it photo.JPG

This was an amazing gift!  First, just that they took the time to blow up all those crazy balloons, but also because J is not an effusive kid.  To see such sweet messages was really touching...and I LOVE the first grade spelling.  I'm "pefect".  Clearly. And loved totalee.

The rest of the week was pretty abysmal due to some issues I've been having with one of my students.  I'm darn good at my job, and I'm struggling right now with helping her to succeed with behavior.  Not a good feeling.  Luckily, my sweet sister-in-law took me out on Wednesday evening to celebrate my birthday.  Pitchers of margaritas and lots of girl talk were involved.  And then, as we were ready to leave, the waiters all came by singing Happy Birthday.  Totally (totalee) took me by surprise.  Best part: instead of cake, they had a flaming shot for me.  And a hat.

Best. birthday cake. ever.

Quite a look for me...
So my SIL drove me home and my kids ended up going to pick up my car, which I thought was a great way to remind them about the importance of calling for a ride when one has been drinking.  Aren't I a great parent, modeling correct behavior like that? :)

On Friday, I returned to the scene of the crime, where one year ago today I had my first taste of mountain bike trails .  Not coincidentally, one year ago this coming Friday I had hand surgery to pin my dislocated thumb back into place.  Since I've got a little more mountain biking experience now, and since it was a beautiful day, I wanted to get out on the trails. 


Here's how the GORC website describes the trails: This trail system is made up of nearly 8 miles of tight, twisty, all-dirt singletrack in 4 separate trails, with a 5th trail in the works. Modest elevation gain, thick forest, and smooth hardpack make for rides which will satisfy every rider from beginner to advanced. The trails were designed in such a way that they would be a place not only for beginners to try out mountain biking, but also to allow more advanced riders an opportunity to test their bike handling skills by riding the narrow trails at a more rapid pace

There aren't any real technical areas, some dips and climbs, some roots, and some logs.  It was a good place for me to practice riding switchbacks without a death grip on the brakes (though still using them plenty), picking a line, hopping downed (small) trees, and keeping my gaze ahead of me rather than right in front of me.  It would've been nicer to have company out there, but I had a blast riding on my own.  And I only thought I was going to flip over my handlebars twice--once when I braked too hard going downhill, and once going over a bigger tree.  Definitely still need practice with that.
I could've stayed out there all afternoon, except that I couldn't.  We had to get supper eaten and head to the high school to watch my oldest in his last musical at the school.  Our high school has a phenomenal performing arts program.  These kids are amazingly talented.  The spring musical was Hairspray.
Enjoying the best seats we've ever had
We have the movie version that John Travolta is in, but I decided not to watch it until after I'd seen the high school presentation.  That way, I could see it with fresh eyes.  Unfortunately, I was also seeing it with my 7 year old son and was completely unprepared for some of the content.  And thus it was that when the stage-mother producer lady sings, "...I screwed all the judges...", my child, who had spent his time up to that point whispering, "What did he say?  What did she say?" heard that line loud and clear.

"What does 'screwed' mean, Mommy?"

Total parenting fail: caught off guard and (frankly) trying to watch the play and keep him quiet, I answered, "It's a way to make friends."  Then, realizing that my first grade son was going to come home some day telling us that he screwed the new kid in class, I added, "But not a very nice way!" 
Ohhhh, dear.  Sigh.

And finally I resumed my marathon training on Saturday, despite Chris K's assurances that I could BQ possibly finish the marathon without running for the next couple weeks.  My thinking was the doctor said I'm not going to make it much worse if I run...I just want to do one more long run... Unfortunately, I totally set myself up to fail.

I had plans to have lunch with my mom around 1:30.  I got up at 7:30 to go run, and it was pouring outside.  Now, I know that I won't melt, but I didn't want to run 20 miles in the rain.  Back to sleep.  Got up between 8-8:30, and the sun was out.  Rather than get moving right away, I helped J clean in his room, got him breakfast, got me breakfast, just generally poked around.  When I finally decided to get my butt in gear, I still had to track down all my running clothes.  By the time I got to the trailhead, it was almost 10.  I called my mom and said it would be closer to 3 before I'd be ready.


I parked along a 10-mile loop, thinking that I could stop by my car after the first loop and get more water.  Two weeks after we had snow on the ground, the temperature climbed above 80 on Saturday.  It was probably mid-70's while I was running.  Beautiful, beautiful weather...unless you've been training in cold weather and are completely unprepared for the heat. 

The first part of the run went OK.  I've gotten spoiled with all the trails I've been running and company I've been having on runs, and my iPod just wasn't cutting it.  Still, I was happy to be out and running again.  Even so, I thought early on that if I was taking too long I could just cut the run short so I could meet my mom on time.  Or instead of running the second loop I could run so far down the trail and then turn around.  Or maybe I'd just run the other half on Sunday. 


Can you see where this is going?  The run got more difficult for me...mentally, not so much physically.  I mean, I was tired, no question.  But I kept stopping to walk.  It was like when I first started running and I'd tell myself, "You can do it, you can do it," and then just...stop.  By the time I got back to my car, I felt thoroughly defeated.  I'd been mentally composing my blog post about my failed run for about 4 miles.  Talk about your self-fulfilling prophecies!

I sat in my car, had a drink, and called my mom to tell her that I'd be on time after all.  I sat in my car and sent a quick whiny blog post.  I started driving home and realized what a big baby I was being.  I totally had time to finish that second ten miles.  But I'd already changed plans with my mom twice, and I don't get to see her nearly enough. So...I left the run in the bag and headed home.  I'm still annoyed with myself, but I'm letting it go.  Let that be a lesson to me about talking myself out of something I know I can do.  I need to start making one of Amanda's collages.  Or at least ban the RISC (Running is Stupid Club) from my solo runs.


  1. We all have weeks like that! It's an Aries thing. From on 29 yr old to another; it will pass! Glad your back on your training!

  2. Happy 29th birthday Kate!! :) Love the balloons! Hope that ankle holds up...at least you'll be able to run your marathon and that is great news (can't wait to see the PT this afternoon and know what I'm up against). Hang in there and remember "the body is able what the mind is willing" :) But sometimes, it's okay to not be willing .

  3. I've read birthday cake is the best training food. All those frosting carbs.

    Glad you are still a go. Just don't make it so bad that it will significantly hurt your time.

  4. Hahha, reading Jennifer's comment - yes, it is an Aries thing! :)

    Be very careful with the A.T.; I am certain I have a bad case of that, along with my P.F., and look at me not running for a year. And I've had a few friends with surgery for their Achilles. I find what helps best for me is to find the trigger points in my calf and work those out!!!! Heaven!

    I love the pic of the hat :). Glad you had a great birthday!!!

  5. Happy 29th! I'm so jealous of your age, oh to be so young!! ;)
    Your balloon surprise was AMAZING! I find myself once again Jealous! Drinks with your SIL and a shot?? Still Jealous over here.
    Your motivation - killing me with jealousy.
    Guess I'll clean my house - (feeling oh so jealous of me aren'tcha?)
    It's SO much greener where you live - we are still very brown.

    Yep, you guessed, I'm jealous.
    Well that should make you feel better anyway. SOMEONE likes you life! ;)

  6. Happy Birthday! I love love love all those balloons! What a fun thing to come home to. When I did my first marathon my husband and kids had written 26 inspirational notecards that led me down the stairs when I got up. I LOVE things like that. I love being made a fuss of on my birthday and you certainly got that along with some amazing presents! Jealous of the bike rack.

  7. Love the ballons! You got some great gifts too! Have you picked a road bike yet?

    Sorry work has been rough. You have a great SIL. Love the hat. Maybe you can borrow it for a Mexican Halloween party :-).

  8. Thanks for the comment!!

    Happy birthday-annual 29th-ha! I'm jealous of your gifts!! I want a new road bike or at the very least a rack for my car:)

    Hope your achilles feels better. I'm glad you don't have to forgo the marathon:)

  9. Aww. how sweet that they had this party for you!! So awesome! Ha! Love the spelling too. Glad you're healing that foot and don't have to call things off. Your comment today totally (totalee) made me laugh!

  10. That hat is SO you! Love it!

    The "screwed" story totally cracked me up and reminded me of a situation I would like get into with my own kids. Phew - this parenting stuff is hard!

  11. Happy birthday, you are so young!!! Glad to know that you can run YOUR marathon!

  12. The balloons are awesome! You are a lucky birthday girl :) Happy 29th ;)

  13. I have mental issues all.the.time. You can do it, just brush that one off and try again another day. Love he birthday balloons - too sweet :)

  14. Very very cool balloons. Happy Birthday young lady. So what will you be doing to sweeten the news about your marathon to your husband?


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