Tuesday, January 15, 2008

In the immortal words of Bender...

"Everyone else was doing it. I just wanted to be popular." Errrr, wait, I meant, "Now that's why they call me Bender the Magnificent!" Oh, got it. "I'm back baby!"

2007 basically sucked. No, not basically. 2007 sucked. I may not have had a worse calendar year in my life. I had two injuries that cumulatively took me off my feet for over five months -- about two and a half for IT-band induced knee tendinitis in the spring, and then three for when I got my ass handed to me in soccer in September which screwed up all the ligaments on the outside of my right foot. In between, I spent four months working six to seven days a week, probably over 60 hours a week on average, writing a proposal at work that, we found out after we submitted and lost, never had a chance of succeeding. There was also some really crappy personal stuff in there, but that's not to discuss here.

Anyway, on December 17th, I ran for the first time since September 21st. My foot hurt until after Thanksgiving, so I wasn't even able to ride a bike, basically do anything -- it hurt to stand on it. Needless to say, I was ridiculously out of shape. That first day, I made it 1.2 miles. I started running three days a week at that point. That means I ran 12 times between September 22nd and the Phoenix Half Marathon on January 13th.

As Danielle so eloquently put it in her post the other day, training is for sissies. On Sunday, I completed my first half marathon. I was taking it very seriously, as evidenced by the fact that I didn't even bother to bring a watch. I wanted to finish, with no injuries. As long as I crossed the finish line not limping, I would be happy.

I finished in 2:15:52, which I am pretty impressed with. I had no idea when I actually started, because I didn't actually see a clock at the starting line, so I had to guess what time I crossed the line when I saw the clock at mile one, and use that as a basis for estimating when I'd finish for the rest of the race. Turns out I ran the first mile a full minute faster than I thought I did, which amuses me.

My only problem when I finished was that my knees were pretty sore, not being used to the abuse they take from running any significant distances. It usually takes me a couple of runs greater than 6 miles to get my knees used to the pounding, so jumping straight to 13 was harsh. I hurt pretty bad Sunday, and Monday was no treat either, but I've been icing them pretty consistently, and Tuesday felt a lot better than Monday, so I figure I'll be good in a few days.

Anyway, Danielle's trip report pretty much sums up the rest of my weekend experience, with the exception of the flights, which were crowded, but uneventful.

Now that I am running again, I will be hanging around here on the blog again. When I had to stop running in the spring because of injuries and work, I stopped even visiting the blog because I was so frustrated that I couldn't do anything. Deciding whether my return is a good thing or a bad thing is an exercise left to the reader...


Danielle in Iowa said...

Welcome back!

Al Dimond said...

Way to get through the half! I know the feeling of running a race you haven't really trained for coming off of injury (River to River Relay, 2005, 4 months after ACL reconstruction and just a couple weeks after being allowed to start running again), and... it's a great feeling to get back out on the course and realize you didn't lose everything. Even though I don't normally like racing all that much, in that situation the race got my confidence back up really quickly, and grateful for everything I still could do.

Best of luck on your continuing recovery.

Lisa said...

yay, welcome back! I am really out of shape too and battling injuries, and sort of feel your pain. Actually I'm way too much of a sissy to even try a half these days.

Advice: watch the movie "run fatboy run" and you will feel instantle better about yourself!

P.O.M. said...

I think 2008 will be WAY better :)

I am about to run a half marathon totally unprepared. Oh well.

Joe said...


If D and I teach you anything, it's that preparation is wholly unnecessary. I think you're pretty much guaranteed to kick total ass in your race.