Sunday, August 30, 2009

El Morro to Laguna Bright and Early......

Up at 4:30 in the morning, sleepy eyed I roll off the bed. Got a sheduled appt with some friends from the OC Trailrunners; early risers........hmm, so much nice sleep wasted! My intent is to get to the trail head early, run about 6 miles and meet them; then run about 11. The intent was there, just not me! I arrive at 5:55am, motivated, eyes gleaming, body ready to run..............ok......... tired, groggy and in need of coffee!! But I was there and they were there so there was not turning back.

They were bright and shiny on the otherhand, making in much easier to get into gear. Brooks Cascadias ready, gators on and off we go.....

I can feel the temp warming, much warmer that it should be at 6:00am but really not to bad. We run the ridge from the Ridge Park trail head along the spine and off toward Laguna. My stride is strong without any indications from my previous roving aches and injuries; all is well. My weak points are hill and my intent is to hit them hard today so I'm content with the relaxed pace, as we reach Laguna we decendto into the Valley from the Fire road......welcomed by a steeeep downhill which runs all the way to the highway.... at the road I take a drink, take a breath and turn around ... game face on, hill time. I pace myself and with fairly controlled breathing and stride I manage to run the length through soft sand and steep incline all the way to the top of the ridge......satisfied.

El Morro is beautiful in the morning, looking over Laguna and the hillsides......amazing! We run back along a singletrack and down to the lower valleys of the canyon, confronted a large tarantula; very cool, havent seen many lately......back up and back along another singletrack to the trailhead on top of the range of hills.......11.45 miles today and happy I woke up!!!

Saturday, August 29, 2009

a new beginning..

For many...many...many years I've been running; most my life in fact. In all that time you'd think that I'd have learned just about everything there is to know about this thing called running.

I have recently come off a pretty bad hip flexor injury, months of physical therapy...the appointments, the x-rays, the verbal punishment for not listening and running anyway. You learn alot from your stumbles, your fall from the heights of running confidence; at least I did.

Coming of an 18 mile trail run, gliding down some switchbacks It happened, but I didnt feel it, my body had come to a crossroads and I didnt even know it..... a small twinge, nothing to be worried about I thought; so I ran. The days of the week blurred after that.. I was pushing for an upcoming race...ok a marathon, for me at the time, it wasnt a race; more of an obligation. I've been running this run now for some time 7 at my last count and was looking forward to a PR time with my training recently. So on I pushed, sore now, unusually sore...upper inner thigh sore but I ran anyway. I've been sore before, ha!, there it is! my downfall....and just when you think you know everything.

After a week of hard running I couldn't walk, like Dr. Frankensteins assistant in "Young Dr. Frankenstein"...." you Igor! get me a brain!, a healthy brain!". I drug myself around, drug my leg around; man it hurt. You can only fake those little things, like gifts that you dont like... that sheepish smile just to satisfy those around you...... but not pain like this; you cant fake a walk when you just can walk! I spent hours on the internet doing research, educating myself about muscles, tears and strains..hours...and hours. Then it happened, a race, a trail race that seemed to good to pass up!

It was called Bandit and it was beautiful, a 30k run through the mountains above Simi Valley and it called to me..... after all it was the first run of this race, just organized! and my first official trail run... so I did it. I completed the race but not before my left leg seized up on me during the last half mile of downhill; frozen, clamped tight i felt it run through my thight; scary.

It was Physical Therapy after that because I might be a runner, a stuborn runner but we do know our times people might think they know more but we know OUR bodies. And mine had enough. My adductors were strained but I learned alot from therapy, my gluts were not strong enough and were not firing before my quads fired which put extra strain on the adductors and hip flexor; wow... kinda boring but interesting at the same time!..... The exercises were easy, there were many but they were routines that you can do at home if you knew what to do.......

So after weeks, months and the L.A. Marathon (they werent happy that I ran that one either), I moved on and took what I learned with exercise at home for free.

I'm feeling better know, sometimes I'm reminded about my hip which I think might be a good thing......but I'm running almost at 100 % now, although it takes some time to get back what you lost...... a runner doesnt have that time to lose, it seems that for every day lost we loose two we just have to keep running.

This is a first for me, this blogging thing....I've got alot to talk about, things I've learned along the way; I'll get to em. For know though, I though I'd share my mentality with you, good or least its a beginning...... alot to talk about, trail running, Mt. Disappointment, Bulldog and the OC trailrunners .....