Dates: 10/10/22 – 10/16/22
Training Week: 7
Miles: 39 running + 13.7 hiking/walking + 18 cycling
Commentary: Monday was a much needed rest day. I went to my last not-work PT appointment and told the doc I had a hard weekend of running and needed to take it easy. He gave me a list of exercises to do until my work PT appointment, and to my relief, they’re all relatively easy, as in I can do them without falling over.
Along with all the other get-a-good-night’s-sleep stuff I reimplemented, I also started working on being more mindful. There’s an online course my work offers, and I started reading Meditations from the Mat again (I’ve never finished it). And I started reading No Self, No Problem. My sleep has improved, but Tuesday morning I was still exhausted when I woke up for my run. The run wasn’t the greatest, but I got it done.
I usually work in town on Wednesdays, but due to scheduling snafus at work, I had to go out to the desert. That meant waking up at 3:40am for my interval run. Thankfully, I slept great that night and woke up feeling rested. As soon as I started running my mind wandered to finances, and I could feel myself getting stressed out. All the bills are somehow due in October. ALL OF THEM. As well as some other stupid stuff.
I reminded myself to not stress about things I can’t change. It sucks to pull money out of savings, but at least I have plenty of savings. It’s not ideal, but it’s also not worth stressing about. I also reminded myself to be present in the current moment. First, I focused on my breathing lining up with my footfalls.
Then I took in my surroundings and appreciated the crisp air, the light from the moon, and the sound of the water in the canal. Pretty soon I was smiling and felt light and wonderful. I’ve started this mindfulness journey many times, and I’m hoping to stick to it this time.
That evening I noticed a pain in the area above my left ankle. I won’t go into great detail about it because I already did in another post. Because of this injury, I didn’t run on Thursday. I walked instead. I also got my butt in gear and started strength training for my legs and glutes. Better late than never?
In an effort to rest my injury with the hopes of a speedy recovery (which isn’t likely since it’s probably a tendon issue), I hit the spin bike on Friday and walked. It felt good to get on the bike, and I really pushed myself to get my heart rate up. I could also feel my legs getting sore from my short and easy workout the night before. That means my legs were much weaker than I thought. Sigh.
The weather this fall has been absolutely perfect. Crisp in the morning, warm but not hot in the afternoon, and cool evenings. And there still really isn’t any snow at the high elevations. My plan for Saturday was a 25-mile loop up in Grand Teton National Park up Death Canyon and down Granite Canyon. With the weather still beautiful, I headed towards the park Friday night with the hopes of still getting a few miles in despite my jank tendon.
I woke up to the light of the moon on Teton Pass and drove to the trailhead. I geared up like I would do the whole loop, but I told myself that if the tendon started hurting, whether from hiking or jogging, I would just turn around.
About a mile and a half in I hit a downhill and started running slowly and carefully. The tendon felt good, so I continued my slow and careful run until the next uphill. All in all, the tendon wasn’t bothering me. It felt fine. It was almost as if I’d never had any problems with it.
When I reached the climb from Death Canyon up to Fox Pass, about nine miles in, I made the decision to keep going instead of turn around. Up at Fox Pass I joined the Teton Crest for a few miles, but this time I was headed in a different direction from the thru hike. The scenery in the canyon and along the Crest was beautiful. The brown from the dead grasses and wildflowers made it look like another world.
I passed one person right as I started the downhill at the beginning, and I didn’t see another person until mile 20 at the end of Granite Canyon. About halfway down Granite, I did stumble upon two moose. I do believe I scared the piss out of them, literally. Once they wandered off into the woods and I continued down the trail, I almost stepped in a puddle of fresh pee on the trail.
The last mile and a half back to the trailhead was downhill, and instead of taking it slow and easy, I ran. It felt so good to let my legs go and fly down the trail. At the end of the 25 miles I was surprised by how great I felt. Maybe it’s because I took it easy instead of pushing myself. The back of my left heal didn’t hurt. The jank tendon didn’t hurt. And overall, my body felt great.
Back at the house, as I undressed to shower I noticed my left ankle, specifically around the jank tendon, was swollen. Huh. Oops. It still didn’t hurt though. I guess just because it felt good didn’t mean it was good. I put some ice on it, and before bed I wrapped it in an Ace bandage.
By morning the jank tendon did hurt. I could still walk around okay, but it didn’t feel great. Perhaps I should have stuck to my plan of no running for a week, regardless of how the jank tendon felt. But, I am a runner, and we tend to do stupid things, don’t we?
Instead of resting my jankle, I took some ibuprofen and went hiking with a friend. Even after the ibuprofen wore off it still felt okay, but the swelling never went away. When I got back from the hike I actually did my strength training, so go me!
Endlessly seeking adventure.