UPCOMING EVENTS for 2016: Puerto Rico Marathon (March), Virginia/Pennsylvania Marathon Double (April), Cedro Peak Ultra 45k (April), Quicksilver 50k (May) NUT 50k (June) Lake Tahoe Trail 50K (July), Cloudsplitter 55K (October)

It's never too late to be what you might have been. --George Eliot

Athena is the Goddess of wisdom and war. In 2005, I declared war on my own bad tendencies: sloth, being fat, compacency, and being too old for adventure. This is the story of how I went from being someone who never stood when she could sit, to being an ultrarunner, marathoner, and triathlete. Along the way I've cried, laughed, fallen, gotten up, lost, won, hallucinated, been dehydrated, DNF'ed, and been DFL.
I also swear. Alot.
"You're never too old to be what you might have been" --George Eliot

Wednesday, September 01, 2010

I smell the smelly smell of something that smells. Thursday 13.

13. Freshness, part 1.  I try to cut down on the wear and tear (via washing, drying) of my running clothes by wearing them a second day, but afterwards, I can't stand myself.  I no longer feel like a delicate flower.   I guess I need to increase my stock of comfortable running clothes. 

12. Freshness, part 2.  If you mix up a gallon of Crystal lite you'd better drink it soon, or put it in the refrigerator.  Don't ask me how I know this.  Just trust that I do.

11. Small, part 1.  A classmate who hasn't seem me since early spring is in my class this semester.  Tuesday she sidled up to me and said, you've lost weight, right?

"Um, closing in on 30 pounds," I said..

She dropped her voice lower, looked around and said, You all right?

"Pardon?"

I mean, are you okay?


OH. Yes, I told her, I'm okay! I've just been doing a lot of running and weight watchers.  She seemed relieved.  She was quick to assure me that I didn't look sick or anything, she was just concerned.

She's not the first of my classmates to have made the comment.  I talked last week about the double-take.  I guess it's more dramatic than I thought.  I guess I don't see a difference, since obviously I live with my self and it's happened gradually.  I see different numbers, on the scale, on my clothing tags, but I don't feel that much different.  Maybe it's because I feel normal.  This is the size I used to be, before laziness, age, a failing thyroid, and early change of life stuff caught up with me.  For about a decade I bounded back and forth between a 12 and a 16, and now I've dropped down below a 10, which is where I was throughout most of my 20s.
But enough about that.

10.  Hills. Baboo has me do this run at least once a week: 8 to 10 miles from home, nearly all gradual downhill, on a paved bike path.  It's supposed to strengthen my quads and improve my foot turnover.  At the end, he picks me up.  It must work, because the first time I did it, my quads were completely fatigued.  The following week, slightly less so.  What is the point, you may wonder. 
Well, in ultras, your quads are key.  Have you ever done a long downhill only to find that your quads were a quivering mass of uselessness at the end?  That's what we're trying to avoid.
The first week, my knees and ankles were aching, and my quads were useless for the next three days.  This week, no pain. And, the run was slightly faster. 
Of course, the rest of the week, I have to run up hills, too.

9.  Creepy.  I repeatedly get reports from old-school clinicians that describe teenage girls as "pretty" or "attractive". Not very clinical or objective, IMHO.


8. Minimalist Running, part 1: Barefoot running has, ironically, become a million dollar industry, as evidenced by this website I stumbled on at Zensah

7.  Minimalist Running, part 2: Presenting, the anti-minimalist shoe.  or the maximalist, if you will: the Hoka.  Sweet Baboo saw about four people at Leadville with what he called "Giant Sponge Shoes".
Behold:  
available at hokaoneone.com

6.  Small, part 2.  After my morning run on Wednesday, unclothed, unfed, and slightly dehydrated, the scale said 149.6.  Then, of course, I had to eat and drink.  But for a moment, there it was, and I know it's coming: no more Athena.  What will I call this blog then?  What will I be?

5.  Old friends. Unfortunately, I've discovered an old friend from my thinner days.  Why, hello low blood sugar!  Fainting spells, pull up a chair--it's been a while!
I'm not sure why.  Maybe something to do with less visceral fat?  Maybe Dr.s Cindy and David can chime in on this.  In any case, I have to watch what I 'm eating to make sure I'm getting enough carbs.  

4. Accomplishment.  During the month of August, I ran 218 miles. I actually ran nearly all of them!  Can you believe this shit?  I can't. 


3.  DNS.  Having said that, it looks like Redman is out.  I have two off days a week to cycle and swim, and I'm too tired on those rest days - I actually need them to be days when I rest, or do yoga.  I had this crazy thought that I could fit in work, grad school, 100-mile run training, and iron-distance training.  Even my crazy-assed ultra friends stared at me skeptically.  What was I thinking?

So, I had a choice to make between the two, a 100-mile run, which I've never done before and am not sure I can, that involves a short half day of driving out and back, or an iron distance triathlon, which I've done before, involves a minimum of a day's drive and carting around 2 bikes and other gear.  After thinking about it, I chose the 100-mile run. 
To be honest, I know it sounds strange, but I'm a bit burned out on triathlon.  Ironman training was getting to be quite a chore that was anti-enjoyable.  8 hours on a bike - and that was half my weekend.  I'll still do triathlon, but at shorter distances, probably 70.3 and down.  I'm done for this season, though.
I'm sorry to anyone who was planning to meet me there.  On the other hand, if you've not doing anything and want to join the party at Javalena Jundred in October, c'mon out and see the crazy ultra runners.

2.  Music.  I finally have the perfect mix on my iPod shuffle.  There's no reason why that should matter to do.  But there it is.

1.  Do-wacka-do!  That's what I'm doing instead of the Redman. It's a trail run.  (Google it).  Oh, and here's a map of the course: http://beta.mapmyrun.com/route/detail/22248944/?open_ive_done=1.

September is a busy month.  This weekend, I"m doing the "turtle marathon" down south of here.  Then I'm going to be doing Rio Del Lago in California next weekend, and then the following weekend a local half marathon (Chips n Salsa, I there better be some at the finish) and then the DoWackaDo 50K.  I'll be training through all these.  In fact, they're expensive supported training runs.  With a Tshirt and food at the end.

...

7 comments:

  1. #7: I read about Karl Meltzer switching to those shoes (I assume he wasn't kidding) and I'm curious about them. Maybe they're like running on individual hammocks or something.

    #4: Crap, that's awesome. I thought I was good breaking my all-time record for monthly mileage with 208. Well done!

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  2. You are so inspiring! I've been reading for a while, but I don't think I've ever commented. Just thought I'd let you know I think you rule. :)

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  3. Absolutely awesome numbers for August! I love the cartoon! And you are right, I don't think "pretty" is a clinical term that should be applied to girls. Do they say a boy is "handsome"?

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  4. Christi, I've seen it, once. However, they also do not say "ugly". I'm of the opinion that if you would not say the opposite, then it probably isn't relevant or objective.

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  5. I find you so inspiring! I know this sounds creepy, but can I just move to NM and run with you and SB?
    I did a 10K in june and had the thought that my purpose in life just might be to prevent other people from coming in last...I had a PR with an 11:30/mile pace.
    keep it up, you rock.

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  6. Someone recommended your blog to me for a little inspiration. I've read through several posts and glad I have come across your journey. I will look forward to future entires. Keep em' coming. : )

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  7. #11...I've had a handful of people ask me the same thing. One even asked if I was dying!

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