- After a 10 ½ hour night sleep Monday night, I completed the trip home on Monday and was welcomed home by a family get-together at the Mexican restaurant and some of my parents’ homemade ice cream. That night was the worst all week. I tossed and turned all night long due to the pain in my legs and ended up calling off work Tuesday because of an overall feeling of “yuk!” Knowing my deep tissue massage was Tuesday night and moving/warming the muscles is a good thing and facilitates recovery, I decided it was a perfect day to take Marjie and the girls out to the Ledges, one of my very favorite areas to run. We had a picnic lunch at the Octagon then hiked all of the Ledges including stops at the Overlook and the Ice Box Cave. The girls loved it and especially my oldest tried to scale every single boulder/rock formation we came across. It was a perfect day for weather, too, with sunny skies and temps in the 70s. Tuesday night, Lori “fixed” me the best way she could and helped put me more on the proper road to recovery. In my opinion, a post-race massage for marathons or longer is a critical piece of the overall “stay injury-free” puzzle. My body is healing so aligning everything the way it should be with both facilitate proper recovery and allow the muscles to rebuild in the shape/location that they are supposed to.
- Thursday night was the first night I ran. I saw the group trail run was set to visit the 3 main waterfalls in the Valley and at a distance of 7.5 miles and thought it would be the perfect recovery run…soft run, variable running service, and NO asphalt. I had a blast and felt extremely good. Once running for about 5 minutes and everything being warmed up, all soreness disappeared and the run went off without a hitch and actually got a bit speedy at times. Ironically, the creaky muscles were back as I went to bed. That’s alright…more and more water each day and I’ll be good as new soon enough. Friday was yet another day spent sitting in my cubicle at work, taking walking breaks whenever possible just to get the muscles warmed up. On Saturday and a weekend on tap to spend with the Navy in Cleveland, I ran 4.5 on Saturday around downtown and another 7 on Sunday.
- Now being a week post-Kettle, I feel really, really good. Nearly all discomfort and soreness has disappeared with just a little bit of the tingling feeling remaining in my right toes. This week, I will get back to my 4:30am runs (very necessary to maintain my daytime sanity) and go a semi-long run this weekend somewhere in the teens. The following weekend (3 weeks post-Kettle) I will ramp back up to the 30 mile distance when I run the final 30 miles of the Burning River 100 course on June 27th. At that point, I’ll be 5 weeks out from my 2nd 100-miler of the year, Burning River.
- I’ll admit: for many MANY hours of the Kettle Moraine 100, I “wrote” many drafts of the e-mail I was planning to send to Joe (Burning River Race Director) pulling my registration. “Do I really want to go through this again?” “I’ve done it once, why do it again?” While I intended to pull that registration for the overwhelming portion of the Kettle, in the end the final result/decision about Burning River ended up being to leave it as is and to show up at Squire’s Castle at 5am on August 1st for my 2nd attempt at the getting my first buckle. The experience will be totally different: I’ll have family support, I’ll know people at nearly every aid station, I’ll sleep in my bed the night before, and most likely it will be hot and humid unlike the Kettle. Regarding the course, it is “easier” but I hesitate using the word “easier” and “100-miler” in the same sentence. Any way you cut it, it’s still 100 miles and still an incredible challenge no matter how many times you do it. I am thankful for the knowledge and experience I gained at the Kettle. I hope and pray it will be instrumental in getting me to the Falls River Square finish line in Cuyahoga Falls.
- These photos were taken with a disposable camera which I ditched at Emma Carlin Aid Station. I simply didn't want to deal with carrying it anymore. They're not so great in quality because not only are they not digital, they were scanned after being developed. Not having any friends or family at the Kettle, this is just about all the pics I have to share with all of you.
Have a great week, everyone and Happy Trails!