Daily Chatter

Monday, September 20, 2010

Staying present

Day # 134 ~ 3.5 miles

This morning I hit over 1000 miles without a day off.
This morning I felt I have ran 1000 miles without a day off.
Let me explain.

This weekend Hubbs took the kids and I to Walnut Creek Park.  He told me I had 2 hours to run. 
Oh Goody!  I was excited.  I really need time on technical trails again before the Ultra at the end of October.  So even though I was completely unprepared for serious trail running I grabbed a trail map, kissed the family and started running.
I wanted to work on my trail navigation, tracking and downhill speed. 
 (that, my friends, is what is called forshadowing!)
Since I did not know the trails my pace was painfully slow but I reminded myself to work on the aspects of trail running that I had planned to work on.  There is nothing worse than changing your running plan mid-run.  It makes for moments of mental "absenses."  You know what I mean, when you are lost in your thougths or lost in your planning your next move and not staying present. 
Well, while you are on unfamilar technical trails there is no time for that!
(more of that foreshadowing)
I stopped at intersections to plan which trail I would take but I felt comfortable while on the trails and never felt like I had missed a marker.  During the run even on the rockiest sections I felt confident about my tracking and finding my path.  However on the steepest downhills I was still slowing more than I wanted to.
(...foreshadowing...wait for it...)
I was out of the harder sections and had decided that I was just going to put in a few more miles and call it a day.  I did not have enough water and I was covered in salt already.  These choices put me on a moderate trail of about 2 miles to loop me back to the playground.  That is when I started to mentally recap what I had done "right" and what I had done "not so right."
...And then I was flying!  What???!?!?
Then I was sliding rolling painfully bouncing on rocks down the side of a hill.
At that very moment I had been thinking about the consequences of falling with a handheld and not wanting to suffer an unarressted fall.  The fall lasted long enough for me to strike almost every surface of my body. 
Okay, slight overstatement.
I was able to not hit my face.
The side of my head; shoulder; upper back; right forearm; major knee, calf, right hand and ankle damage.
The funny thing is that after we got home and I used a skewer to picked the rocks and dirt out of the hole in my knee I was still eager to go back to the trails.  I know I am very lucky that I did not suffer a serious injury.  I was alone on the trail and a long way from assistance.  But I can't help but wish someone had seen me oh, video would be even better just so I could know why I fell so hard on that stretch of trail. 
It was a painful lesson in staying present mentally.  It's a mistake I hope I don't make again!
I just hope this run isn't foreshadowing for the October Ultra!

What is your best "fall" story? 
Did it make you trail/run shy afterward?


  1. I've twisted my ankle by falling about 5 times on this same dumb rock in the park I like to run the trails on. You'd think I'd learn by now. Not so much! Great job on the 1000 w/o a day off...you GO girl!!! :)

  2. Glad you made it out relatively unscathed! I did a trail run years ago, five weeks out from an Ironman race. I was with two guys who were much faster than me. Dumb mistake. I was flying down a descent and really went down, spraining my ankle. I could barely walk on it, but we were so far out that I decided I would force myself to run the rest of the way back in. The next day, that was one ugly, angry ankle. I had to back off training for a while, but still made it to the race. That ankle has come back to haunt me several times since!

  3. wonderwoman with those miles! glad you weren't hurt in the fall. surprisingly i do not have any really awful/funny falling stories. at least not whle running. one time last year in spanish class i was sitting crossed legged and my foot fell asleep which meant that when i stood up to leave i fell on my face!

  4. Hi. I've been reading your blog, and I enjoy it. Sorry to hear about your fall.
    I just had to share a recent fall that I had. I was having a great run, and I was going to end by meeting the family at a local track. Two blocks away from the track I fell in the middle of a residential. I fell so fast and so hard that when I got up, I checked to make sure that my teeth were still in my mouth. Luckily, they were, but I was covered in blood, and my chest was covered. I wasn't really sure where it was coming from. So, I pulled my black tank top over my mouth and nose and ran the 2 blocks to see my family. When I got to the track, I called my family over. When I looked in the car mirror, I saw that the blood was pouring out of a gash on my chin. Luckily, the track is across the street from the hospital. Two stitches, a tetanus shot, and with cuts and bruises all over my face, hands and legs,I went home.

  5. ouch!! i am not a trail runner because I don't pay enough attention. My funniest was when I tripped over a speed bump

  6. Oh my, that's quite the tumble. So far I've been pretty lucky not to have one of those. Or maybe I've just been too careful. My husband says I slow down ALOT going downhill, perhaps too much.

    I hear you on the pace on trails vs. road. I run trails at least once a week and notice a market difference in my pace. However this weekend we decided to venture off onto a different loops than we normally do and it was super hilly. My pace was slower than it's been in I don't know how long. Hard to take mentally, but deep down I know it will only improve my running.

    Hope you recover quickly.

  7. Oh gosh, I'm glad you are okay!! I'm cringing just reading this. I hope nothing hurts too badly the next day. Be careful out there!

    I'm almost afraid to say this, but I don't think I have ever taken a fall... *KNOCK ON WOOD*

  8. Ouchie! Are you really okay?

    My 'fall' story? Hmmm...I have the tendency to trip and fall about twice a week...

  9. omg. i hope ur ok.
    and i really hope that is not foreshadowing at all. pls be careful!

    my fall story.....hmmmm....i always loose my balance and almost fall when running. i did fall off the treadmill one time. it was funny. i was not hurt just embarrassed!

  10. Sorry about your fall, hope you are ok! Way to have the attitude about wanting to get back out there though!

  11. Could you be more amazing?

    I once slid down a hill at 27 weeks pregnant after falling on the trail. scary.

  12. ouch ouch ouch ouch ouch

    this summer i tripped over a speedbump while out with the dogs (takes skill, i tell ya) and have a nasty scar now. also fractured my elbow in the process. not pretty

  13. Glad you're ok! I twisted my ankle 10 minutes before the start of a half I ran in June and it ended up being a complete sh*t show for sure. Only in front of like 1,000 people. Sigh!

  14. goodness! glad you are okay! congrats on the 1000 consecutive miles - awesome!

  15. Ouchie- glad you are okay! Congrats on 1000!!!