Sunday, July 20, 2014

Respect and preparedness

noun: respect 


a feeling of deep admiration for someone or something elicited by their abilities, qualities, or achievements.

a particular aspect, point, or detail.


Respect is quite likely the first and foremost trait I have carried on from my upbringing.  Whether it presents in the form of respecting my authority, neighbors, friends, family, athletes, teammates, or the cashier at the name it, "respect" and I are tightly knit unit. 

What I learned this past weekend was my ignorance to respect myself and to respect a the sport of Ultramarathon.

Knowing that I was coming off a relatively serious and personally scary back injury, and thus ill-prepared and filled with trepidation, I stilled followed my ego toward the race I signed up for, ignoring all medical advice.  Me-being-me, was eager to complete yet another adventure fueled by a love for my new sport. 

Ultramarathons are never, ever, to be taken lightly.  In order to run for hours and hours on end on unknown terrain, climbing countless feet, one must be very mentally and physically prepared in so many ways.

This weekend I was mentally prepared but physically not.  I am past the point of competing in these events simply to complete them, I want to embrace my fitness and push my limits as far as I can in beautiful places, but not harm myself in the process

I sat at that start line asking myself, "how long will my back hold out?".  That is absolutely no way to start an adventure, especially when you are in it for fun, like I am.   Sure enough, 8.5km and about 2500ft in nerves from my injury started firing up down my right leg and my head took a downward spin. 

I stopped at 5500 ft and only 14km/52 km in.  Pathetic in my mind.

As most of you do, I absolutely hate not completing things, and this is still gnawing away at me that I even tried, knowing that I likely couldn't.

I bow down to those runners who prepared, listened to their body when they should have and completed their goal.  Myself on the other hand, I have learned a good lesson with regard to respect.  Starting a task that you are not prepared for does no one any good.  Respect for yourself and your sport (or job, or family, what-have-you) goes a long, long, long way.

I look forward to my next adventure whatever it may be, but will spend the next while making sure I ingrain my capacity to respect myself and my own body. 

Wednesday, July 16, 2014

Challenge faces trepediation

noun: trepidation
a feeling of fear or agitation about something that may happen

Trepidation fuels my every step as I run towards my next challenge.  This Ultramarathon's beauty absolutely captured me

This is how I have lived my life as long as I can remember, chasing the next challenge ahead.  I prefer the self-inflicted crazy challenges I place before myself....but each and every challenge life has given me has made me even more prepared for the next challenge,  self inflicted or not.

This self-inflicted challenge over these next few days could be a doozy.  Its the inaugural Trailstoke 60k (never ran before) and said to be "one of the toughest Ultramarathons in the world".  I look forward to spending the day challenging myself with like-minded (crazy) folk.  As a "skyrunning" event high in the alpine I have my mandatory bear spray in hand and have reviewed my bear awareness....still shaking with the thoughts. My "plan" is to embrace myself with the beauty in order to forget the pain.

Trepidation comes from the fact that I have been out of commission with a bulging disc in my back (damn that was painful!)...which has cleared up over the last week (fingers crossed it stays this way over 60k).   I little tentative,  I will at least try.

I have set in my head that I have no expectations on finishing.... if my sciatic nerve starts firing I'll just piggy back one of those grizzlies down to the finish line :)

Okay, off with my adventure!