Saturday, March 22, 2014

nothing short of miraculous

As hard as I have been pushing my body lately, it was my computer that decided to crap out over the last week, hence the 14-day delay from my last post. Even now I await it's return from the land of Geeks with a brand new hard drive.

Despite my technological woes, I find my running has taken some unexpected turns. I am on day 81 and going strong. After my last ultra training run left me scared and crippled, I assumed my attempt to run 30+ miles would end in a similar fate.

With three weeks out from my event and some foot tendinitis that has become a constant companion, I decided I would get in my final ultra long run with healing time to spare before my 50-mile dooms day.

This past weekend I got up at 5:45am, drove out to U-Village, and hit the Burke Gilman right around 6:40am. That was the start of my lakeside Washington tour. I visited more places in a single morning than most Washingtonian's will visit over the course of 6 months.

U-Village > Windermere > Matthew's Beach > North Seattle > Lake Forest Park > Kenmore > Bothell > Inglewood-Finn Hill > Juanita Bay > Kirkland > Central Houghton > Bellevue > West Bellevue > Mercer Island > Central District > Medrona > Montlake > U-Village

6+ hours. 35 miles. And one extremely dedicated friend willing to put up 13 miles of complaining.

After about mile 20, I began moving as slow as molasses. I'd say the toughest part though, was the trek across the I90 through Mercer Island. Good Lord that was the longest few miles of my life. All in all, I saw some pretty amazing things. I got to see the beautiful and unnecessary homes along Lake Forest Park, run past an orchard of Birch trees in Bothell with blue trunks, nearly got run down at the Kirkland St. Patty's Day Race, and traversed the I90 bridge on foot. It was a big day people, having completed the longest run in my life to date and lived to tell the tale.

The day Washington nearly killed me.
In the end, I made it. I figured I would surely be laid up for the next few days. My feet were so sore, my joints wouldn't bend, and I ached all over... But then the unthinkable happened.

I woke up the next morning, sore, and decided to jog my mile down to the coffee shop. So I did, at a 10 min mile trot. I enjoyed my coffee and biscuits with bacon jam (yes, you read that correctly...BACON JAM) and then began the jog home.

At first I barely put one foot in front of the other. Then things began to feel more fluid, so I opened my stride a bit...then a bit more...and more...until I was at a dead sprint and feeling weightless, a blur to passers by. I ran this way for nearly a mile, clocking roughly around 6:45. This doesn't seem like much, but when you factor in 35+ miles at 14min a pop the day before, I hope you can understand my astonishment. I felt invincible.

The following day, Monday, I ran 4 miles clipping them off around 7:40 and feeling amazing. So amazing, that I decided to go for another round of 3.5 miles at 7:30 a few hours later. Everything feels so in-tune. I've been in incredible shape before, but nothing has ever felt like this.

Have I found the secret to running (besides the obvious that bacon jam is apparently the fuel of champions)? For me, I believe I have. But that will be another conversation reserved for a later date. Until then, I continue to run strong despite some considerable personal and professional setbacks. I'm currently on a quest to find some inner peace, focus, and resolution. I sincerely believe that my running adventure thus far has provided me with more clarity than I could have ever anticipated, and surely more to come in the future as I try to make sense of the rest of my life. Day 81 of  #streak365


  1. how amazing! do you find that you have more or less energy as a result of running this often?

    1. It's a combination of both. It has definitely given me a steady schedule, having more energy during the day (I swim laps a few days during the week and hike on weekends), then I get tired right around 9:30pm every night. What it has done is put me much more in-tune with my body, forcing me to listen and take each day independently.