I am a girl who loves mountains, changing seasons, running, true backpacking, strong coffee, and knitting with high quality yarn.

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

Thursday, November 02, 2006

Back to running content.

…because I finally ran today. It’s been 4 weeks. 6, if you count the first 2 weeks after RDL100, when I totaled of 4 runs. I was afraid to get at it again. I got lazy. I was scared my body forgot how to move in forward motion. That I wouldn’t experience joy anymore. I’ll be slow. I won’t have a will power to get myself out the door without a worthy goal to train for a race. I don’t need it for my self worth. I lost all the connections with my running buddies. And I am so occupied with life and inner thoughts, hard work on changing some issues and rebelling (non-accepting) others…

…but I promised to myself to start running in November. And to Craig to get my behind out on Thursday. And to my Focus group to be on plan by mid-month…What do you know, after a wonderful month of October, Portland moved into monsoon season today. Just proves I live in PNW…how appropriate…if I run, it got to be under bad weather condition, it can’t be otherwise.

I woke up and took my time looking out the window, picking clothes and finding a hat. Drinking coffee, browsing internet. I had given myself enough time to prepare by setting alarm clock at 5 am. Eventually, I knew I am heading out. Apprehension. Fear. Goosebumps of unknown. It was better than first time. I had never, since that sudden first 5k race five and half years ago, taken more than 2 weeks off – once, for trip to Europe. My legs feel heavy and uncomfortable, and I am trying to remember the base: left foot, right foot. It’s a burden for the first mile, slow and awkward. Thighs are aching, not hurting, but waking up sleeping muscles (or lack thereof by now). It is actually not as bad as I anticipated. I start running…like, you know, something faster than 11 min/mile. It is still a motion I have to think about every step, but it gets easier. At the turn-around I realize I will accomplish what I set out to do…don’t laugh, I wasn’t sure I could make it 4 miles. Not in endurance, but in joy and commitment. I feel better as I approach the incline on the way back and pick up the pace ever so slightly. After cresting and coasting for a minute on high, I crash in excitement a bit and shuffle. Then last half-a-mile brings a solid feeling – I’ll be running again. Slowly, no rush. No prove anything to anybody. Just for myself. I’ll see where it’ll bring me…

Both of my former coaches preached to take 4 weeks break between season and get back on a strict schedule. I think I am finally ready for it. To stick with a schedule. Because I finally don’t want to do it because it is expected of me, or because I want to impress anybody. Drop pre-judgment and be just one of many out there, who just runs.

To continue a kind of tradition I started before - weekend at the races.

Javelina Jundred 100M in AZ: a set-to-break-course-record unstoppable Karl Meltzer and a beautiful smiling red-hair queen Michelle Barton. Catra and Xy Weiss will also be running, as well as Jackie Florine, George Velasco and Eugene Trahern (people I will be following). My friend Andy Kumeda will be there and updating me on everybody's progress.

Mount Masochist 50M in VA:
below are known to me entrants who will be in a mix with no particular order. It is an East Coast race, and many names simply unfamiliar to me, so don't take my word on it, and I don't give any predictions because of that.

Kochik, Phil
Andrish, Sean 37 Leesburg, VA
Campbell, Courtney 41 Berryville, VA
Olson, Dusty
Godale, Mark 36 Aurora, OH
Mason, Mike 35 Alexandria, VA
Thompson, Andrew 30 Lyme, NH

Kimball, Nikki
Almodovar, Sarah 29 Asheville, NC
Cospolich, Helen 29 Breckenridge, CO
Donaldson, Jamie 32 Littleton, CO
Morrison, Justine 26 Washington, DC
Patterson, Bethany 27 Richmond, VA
Terranova, Meredith 31 Austin, TX
Utakis, Donna 38 Amherst, MA
Walker, Liz 47 Plainville, GA

47 Curran, Paul 31 Portland, OR (a Montrail team rep)
162 Palazzo, Nicholas 59 Lindehurst, NY (my WS100 2 times pacer and a great person)

Friday night we will have 3 guests at the house for sleep-over: Michelle's husband Eric, his friend Steve and a running wonder Van Phan. They are going to run Autumn Leaves 50 miler. Van gets my vote for the win, and I might elaborate on her history later - she is a wonder woman, that's all I can say for now.
AL50/50 is a local race, so I'll see most of PNW ultra runners looping 10 times past my main aid station. I had made power bars I mentioned before - from the company that contacted me some time ago - and will be offering it to runners for feedback (and, of course, fuel:)). I tried it and it's good, but I am not running long for another month or so, and I feel I can get a fair judgment of the product by offering it to real runners.

Towards the end of Focus seminar each of us had to come up with a statement that seems for us to be hard to believe in. And then we were sent to fly...
I am a worthy powerful woman.


mtnrunR said...

Nice you took break. Great mentally. Jeff took four weeks off after AC also.

see you in the drizzle,

Sarah said...

Woohoo! Here's to running again! : ) Good to wait until you were ready again. I'll see you at the aid station.

Anonymous said...

It's goog to take a break and let everyhting heal up. I'm glad to here that first run back was not too bad. I hope the powerbars are a hit at that aid station. Enjoy the race from the other side!

Anonymous said...

It's goog to take a break and let everyhting heal up. I'm glad to here that first run back was not too bad. I hope the powerbars are a hit at that aid station. Enjoy the race from the other side!

Wes said...

"I’ll be running again. Slowly, no rush. No prove anything to anybody. Just for myself."

Am I missing something here? I thought that was the ONLY reason to run.

"I am a worthy powerful woman."

I believe :-) You will too...

Anonymous said...

Cool deal you're running again! I hope your plane reaches cruising altitude comfortably.

backofpack said...

I have no doubt that you are a worthy, powerful woman - in running and in life. You are strong in the face of adversity, you have influence that you are not even aware of and you are a wonderful, loving person.

Enjoy your time with my boys this weekend - keep them on the straight and narrow while they are away! I'll just warn you (as if you haven't figured it out from the emails) they are a couple of goofballs when they are together.

Have fun and stay warm at your aid station!

robtherunner said...

I look forward to seeing you Saturday. I hope it's not raining, I might melt.

Catra said...

Hi Olga-

I'm so glad you are slowly getting back out there. I know you and you will be kicking butt in no time.
Love ya girl!

Jack said...

Great way of easing yourself back into running, it's kind of like meeting up with a long lost friend. Have fun with all the activities this weekend!

Reen said...

Thanks for the Great post!

rick said...

Breaks are so nice and necessary. I'm looking forward to mine's, one more race to go. The last 5 years I've taken the entire month of December off and while January is always painful because of it, I truly believe it has kept me running this whole time - kept my enjoyment of the sport. This year will be no different, ready to turn it off for awhile and rest.

Yeah Van is amazing. She's always smiling and cheerful. We became friends because she kept greeting me on the race courses. I believe she had a pretty crazy schedule this year, lots of races.

TryAthlete said...

Have a great weekend with your friends Olga!

Mike said...

Olga- good on ya for getting back out there. I'm sure you be up to those crazy mileage numbers in no time! ;-)

Anonymous said...

Olga, great to hear your back to running. I too have just come off a break. It's funny that no matter how long you run or what your accomplishments, time off always seems to bring back the same old doubts and worries. I'm sure you'll be back to your same routine in no time!


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