Saturday, January 4, 2014

It's been awhile!

Today is like international race day or something!  I have so many friends running races today . . . the Pistol 100 (I had been registered for this one!), Frosty 50k, Neusiok 50k, Harbison 50k and a bunch more! 

Temperature here is about 17° without any wind . . . chilly but not terrible!  The sky is a bluebird sky and its suppose warm up into the mid to upper 40s!!  All in all . . . awesome conditions!

I'm sitting here in "my chair."  This chair and I have become quite close friends this last year!!  From mid April until August I pretty much just sat around in this "baby" all the time!  From mid June until mid July I even slept every night here!!  Same with December . . .  my chair was my bed!!  He are I have become way too close!

Anyway . . . today I'm filled with mixed emotions!!

First . . . I know the excitement my friends are feeling and I am excited for them!  Got a few friend running their first ultra and this is always special . . . coming over to the dark side of running!  Of course those of us that are here know how different and how special this dark world is . . . and how awesome the dark side people really are!!  Hard to explain to someone who hasn't experienced it . . . but ultra races are so much more satisfying than "normal" races!  Don't get me wrong . . . all races are fun and can be fulfilling!!  5ks, 10ks, Half-marathons and marathons . . . all are fun and can be a blast!!  But the ultra people are just . . .  well . . . different!

So I'm missing being out there with them!!

But honestly . . . it the race isn't a loop course I'm not with them at all except for the start of the race!!!  I may struggle to hand with some folks for a mile or two . . . but then usually I'll lag back and be by myself the rest of the way.  That's one of the main reasons why I like 24 hour races so much . . . I get to be with folks all day long!  Just way more social for me these days!!

But there is another part of me that is sort of sad that I can't be out there with everyone!

But I'm so lucky!!!  First, I have been able to address the issues caused by my ladder accident!  With the help of my health insurance, I have been able to financially deal with two surgeries and numerous doctor visits, PT sessions, etc.  Many people are not so lucky! 

And I'm lucky that all this has come at a time when I have been retired!  It would have been almost impossible for me to work all that much for so many of the weeks of 2013!  Being retired . . . all have have to deal with is the boredom of being alone . . . and I have Luke and Mama Dog to help me with that!!

And I'm lucky that it is looking good for a virtual 100% recovery!!  Fingers crossed on this one!!

Being alone so much is both a positive and a negative!  I've learned how to deal with so much all by myself!  Things like washing clothes with the washer and drier in the basement at the bottom of stairs constructed by an idiot!  If you are less than 5 feet tall . . . you can walk down them fine.  But I'm 6' 2" and you wouldn't believe how much I have to bend over to go up or down them!  And they are steep with narrow treads!  So getting up and down them on crutches . . . . with laundry . . . is totally comical!!!

Getting groceries, running errands . . . all just are way more complicated!  But I can do them all!!  And only one more week!!!!!!  I'm so excited though I wish this phase was over already!!  LOL!

But being alone so much does tend to draw me more and more into introversion . . . a somewhat natural state for me!  The more I'm alone, the more in withdrawal into myself.  It's not a "dark" sort of withdrawal . . . it just becomes harder for me to be around people again.

Another emotion I'm having is excitement . . . a slow burning excitement!  It's like a building excitement to start another comeback!!  Seems like for the last few years I've dealt with a number of injuries (three knee operations, one hip operation and now two foot operations!).  I getting good at coming back.  And honestly it's like these down times simply recharge my batteries!!  I'm really ready to start training hard and get back into real ultra shape . . . it's been awhile!

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Littleton, North Carolina
World's Slowest Runner . . . well, at least in contention for the honor. Just your average "below average" runner.