Sunday, April 1, 2012

Embracing the Suck (continued)

... so you dance to the rhythm
bounce to the rhythm
shake to the rhythm
and you roll to the rhythm
sweat to the rhythm
get wet to the rhythm
make love to the rhythm
clean up to the rhythm
when you movin'
you come alive
and when ya grooving in rhythm we survive
so don't panic, don't panic ....

Michael Franti & Spearhead, Hello, Bonjour, Yell Fire

Caution... this is another woeful 'runner-down' diatribe so you might want to click on to a more cheerful blog... after first listening to Hello, Bonjour, of course.
Last Sunday I popped the left calf at mile 17.65 of an 18 mile run. I felt a twinge at mile 6 so I stopped to stretch a few times. By mile 14 or so a pea size ball formed about mid-calf and tightened like a wound up spring. The tightness ramped up until each step became a charlie-horse jab to the calf. I tried that ridiculous half run, half hop, half walk form -you do the math- but even that became unbearable so I limped in the last several blocks. Licking my ego, I made an effort to join others for coffee, but that was short lived, I needed some time alone to think this through.  I slipped out the back entrance like a shadow and drove home. 
On a bright side, I ran the full distance with Irene and that was good; the cheerful chatter whittles away the miles and takes the mind off bum-calfs.
Caution... insert odd streams of consciousness here... 
While driving to Minneapolis last week I saw a HUGE sign on an exit ramp, really huge, it can be seen from Mars, right next to the Great Wall of China and the Chicago Marathon start line: Gas, Food, Liquor. I thought... 'man, the only thing missing is ammo' ... gas, food, liquor, and ammo... an epitaph for red neck minimalism. 
Caution... return to pathetic runner-down diatribe...
I'm presently on full rest for two weeks (but I think it'll be more like three... Ive been down this road before).  I'm on a physio schedule which includes ultra-sound and acupuncture. A massage schedule that includes some pretty excruciating work right at ground zero (she called it unpleasant.. I had a more colourful word rolling through my cerebellum).  I've been told that cycling is ok, but even that felt kind of risky so I resisted the urge for a ride today.  At this present moment it's stiff, not painful, but full bore stiff.  Yesterday I had unsettling little spasms running down my lower leg just below ground zero. Fargo Marathon is still on the horizon, but I'll have to rethink my strategy... remember, my first goal is to make it to the start line.
Caution... my man-allergies always act up when I view this video, hope you have better luck...

Caution... return to sad story (as if the above video wasn't sad enough!)...
My plan B was to ditch Fargo if the calf wasn't healed fully and run Manitoba on June 17, a full month later.  I went to bed smiling at my brilliant planning.  When I mentioned my brillance to Jennifer the next morning over coffee she reminded me that we're attending a wedding on June 17 and unless I can recover by 5 PM she advised against it.. she did agree, grudgingly, that I am brilliant.. just maybe lost a little shine with aging.  My unreasonable side says... stupid day for a wedding!  So, plan C....
Caution... plan c...
Run Manitoba full on June 17, recover, attend wedding.
So friends ... damaged, hurt, wounded, sad, anxious, worried... be patient, don't panic, don't panic, and dance to the rhythm.  In the end, it's all we can do.
It is a good day to be alive, even though it sucks.
:>/ Mike
PS... See Gwen. See Gwen run. Run Gwen run... and never, ever stop.