If you're lucky enough to be in the mountains, you are lucky enough.

When something bad happens, you have three choices: let it define you, let it destroy you, or let it strengthen you.

The purpose of life is to discover and develop your gift. The meaning of life comes from sharing your gift with others. - David Viscott

Friday, July 14, 2006

No S.O.B.

Surprisingly, I am very much OK, no, even better - I like that. My breathing is fine, so whether those first 3 days of the week I had developed some kind of allergy (never had them before, but it may pop anytime and seems I had problems same days as Caroline here in Portland) or it was indeed a postponed altitude response, I am not sure. I ran on Thursday and had no problems. I even took a hillier (but more scenic) route to work and ran the whole thing without stopping once (yep, I am still proud when I don't walk because, as an ultrarunner, I use walk breaks often in anything over 10 miles). I felt quite strong too, and almsot thought I should go and see if I can lower my last year's time (last year it was 2 weeks after WS100 and 1 week before Vermont100, so I was just playing on trails). But because it was supposed to be a family get-away with Oleg as prime racer, and he is seriously injured (we think it's either a crack in his femur or a hematoma in periosteum, it hurts to walk and in a sleep as well), that left me alone. Spending over 24 hrs between driving and running (300 miles each way) and much money for gas while NOT spending time with my boys just seemed to be not where I am right now. I can do a training run here, in the Gorge. Last year I did many of those "50k as a training run" races without a second thought, but I filled the hunger and don't want it anymore. Actually, I decided even Gorge is too far and I will go to Forest Park and run there.

I don't know whether it's patience or understanding, or I am simply like Rob trying to prioritize my life and take a break from hard goals, but this seems to fit me these days. I am bit cooled off from crazy "go to all races" and want to stay near family and do house stuff (Oleg is amused). May be I will get more excited if I don't run so much. So today I went to the gym and did a spin class and weights.

Speaking of weights, I also did it on Wed, and since I haven't done any lifting for almost a month (you know, taper, recovery, vacation), I was sore! It was a good feeling. I bumped the weights following Julie Berg's training a bit, and am trying to lower the calories from her link of leannesslifestyle journal. Thanks, Jul! You are a truly inspirational woman in your adhering to fit lifestyle!

We are finally going to get that room painting job done tomorrow. It is also going to be a fun Russian weekend - we are invited to two Russian parties here, and we were BAD friends the whole year with weekends taken by either racing or climbing. Time to step back! Next weekend is also shapes up to be native-speaking - we have another Russian family coming from Seattle for a visit.

So here is my short update on life. This weekend is Hardrock 100, Tahoe 100 and Vermont 100, and I'll be checking progress of my friends there. I read Jeff Browning's report on Bighorn 100 and am inclined to do it next summer if I don't get into WS100. I think I need a break from that one, but will keep applying as I have a wish to get 10 year buckle, and if I don't apply, I'll never get there:)

Oh, and it might just happen I will get to meet Mr. Mental Runner in two weeks!

p.s. Shoot, one more exciting thing! I got to return to happy memory of my first 50 miler today! I ran Canandaigua lake 50M in NY to qualify for WS100 (I am even on the front page there:)), and for the first half ran with John Hemsky (and it was his first as well). We talked quite a bit and our crews helped us both, before he took off to win it in 8:01 (and I slowed down to 8:41). Since that time I followed his races, and he rocked every time he showed up! Massaneutten, Bighorn and HURT 100s come to mind as examples:) I even tried to find him through ultra list, but no success. This morning I got an email from him - we are both on Montrail team now and he sent a few nice words. How cool!


Hilda said...

Wish you enjoy all this non-running plans as any other mortal. It is true, some other things can make you happy (?)

I should be on the good way to be an ultra then, I am doing lots of walking :P

angie's pink fuzzy said...

hope oleg feels better soon!

sounds like life is nice right now. domestic? olga? :)

any word on JJ yet?

backofpack said...

It's great to hear you so upbeat and happy! Maybe it's not patience or understanding, but just finding balance.

Okay, so if we aren't going to see you up here, then we'll be in Oregon for Haulin A. and for Portland. Maybe one of those times?

And how cool that you get to meet Craig! Lucky girl!

*jeanne* said...

10-year buckle of the WS 100. That BOGGLES my mind. ABSOLUTELY!

Anonymous said...

Sorry to hear about Oleg's injury. Best wishes on the recovery.

Hope you have a good time with your Russian friends. Sounds like fun.

Just so you will have something to look forward to -- it was still 94 degrees when I ran last night at 10:30 after a high of 102 ;)

robtherunner said...

You sound pretty relaxed with all of this. That's a good thing. Good luck with the painting.

Ryan said...

Olga...I'm sending you virtual high fives. Congratulations on WS100!! It's always nice after a big race to step back, do a little thinking and kick your feet up.

jennifer said...

Sounds like you are very centered with you running and family right now! I hope that after some more experience I will balance it all better! Have fun painting, I'm supposed to do the same this weekend- I have 4 rooms plus a bathroom to do in the next few months- but I keep blowing it off to go running or hiking!

Sarah said...

Sometimes you need to mix it up a bit. Staying closer to home for awhile sounds nice.

Love2Run said...

Glad to see you taking a well deserved break. Some of my best running happens in the 'off season' between training plans for big races. Enjoy it!

R2B said...

It's cool when old friends just find you!
As for priorities,we all set evaluate and reavaluate what is important to us its only normal.


turnip said...

Sounds like a great plan and a well deserved rest. Then you can come back later stronger and recharged both mentally and physically. I certainly hope Oleg recovers. CONGRATS ON WS100 !!

matt said...

i agree with jennifer...you are sounding very centered and happy. i like the way you thinking about your running and life. you always go with your heart and that is only going to lead you to the place that is right for you.

i am very sorry to hear about oleg. i hope that leg heals quickly and he is back to good health as soon as possible.

Jack said...

Staying closer to home for awhile sounds like a good plan, too much travelling takes time and energy away from other things. I'm just curious how long it lasts ;-)

Susan said...

Front page - that is so cool! congrats on qualifying.

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