Runfessions – January

It’s that time again, fellow runners. Let us runfess to all our running-related transgressions which have occurred since the last time we met to unburden our souls.

 

Meditations in Motion
Take that, Chuck Norris!

 

At the top of my list is Phunt, the 25k trail race I recently ran, against my better judgment. Let me explain.

I like to try new races. There are a lot of races around and I don’t want to get into the rut of doing the same ones over and over. There are a few races, however, that I love so much they are on my schedule each year. Phunt is one of them, right at the very top of my list.

Phunt is such a popular race that it quickly sells out a few days after registration opens. In fact, the 2020 version of the race is already almost full. You have to make up your mind about running the race nearly a year in advance.

When I signed up for Phunt 2019 last January, my injured hip was on the mend. I had just won my age group at Phunt 2018 and my subsequent spring racing season was pretty good.

The injury reoccurred, unfortunately, in August while doing a long run for the Tunnel Vision marathon. I have been trying to rehab it ever since, with uneven results. Despite physical therapy, a strengthening and stretching regimen, and rest, my hip often hurts and my stride and speed are impacted. Long runs are especially troublesome.

Meditations in Motion

I knew that a 16-mile trail run was probably not a smart thing for me to do, but when it comes to running, no one would accuse me of being smart. Besides, when I get pre-race emails from the race director, warning runners to be on the lookout for a grizzly bear recently escaped from a nearby zoo, a bear that was trained to salute the tallest person present when The Star Spangled Banner is sung (a joke), how could I not race?

Meditations in Motion

Bottom line: Phunt lived up to my expectations in every way. I got to hang out with my hubby and a bunch of my running friends; the race swag was amazing; the trails were a mixture of ice, granular snow, and ankle-deep mud; the volunteers at the aid stations (where hot soup, barbeque, grilled cheese sandwiches, bacon, and adult beverages, as well as other typical trail race food, are served) were enthusiastic and helpful; the after-party was raucous. And my hip hurt.

My time was 45 minutes slower than my previous slowest Phunt time and over an hour slower than two years ago. I was dead last in my age group. Even though I had fun at the race, (or phun as they say at Phunt) and I am grateful for the experience and relieved I was able to finish, I am disappointed in my time, ashamed of my disappointment, and frustrated at my inability to accept my present circumstances. Ugh!

On to the next runfession.

 

 

Meditations in Motion

Maybe it was because I was in some pain, but I runfess another runner’s behavior at Phunt irritated me. The young woman in question was friendly, outgoing, and a very good runner. She was running the trail race with her younger sister, who was running her first trail race. The older sister wanted to support her sibling, an admirable thing to do.

The race is run mostly on single-track trails through the woods. As I mentioned, the trails were either snow-covered or muddy. Passing other runners was difficult.

This young woman would run with her much slower sister for a while, then speed up to her normal pace, passing (and displacing) racers in front of her. She would then circle back to her sister, and repeat the process. Several times, I stopped momentarily to get out of her way before I realized what was happening. She must have passed us (and other runners at about our speed) 10 times.

Even though she was periodically checking in with her sister, she wasn’t really running with her, and she was repeatedly interrupting other runners in her path. I wanted to tell her “Please, either run with your sister, or run your own speed, but don’t try to do both,” but maybe I was just cranky.

Meditations in Motion

Here is my final runfession. I am kind of liking running on the elliptical. This surprises no one more than me.

I can work up a sweat in the comfort of the rec center gym, I don’t have to steel myself before venturing outside into the cold, cruel world, there is no traffic to contend with, and I can “run” fairly fast without worrying about the pounding that my hip takes when I run on the roads. I also like to stop every 10 minutes or so for a swig of ice water I keep in a container in the cup holder.

The downside? Yep, it’s boring. For some reason, my mind will not drift when I am on the elliptical. Maybe it’s because there are too many things going on in the gym, too much stimulation, but I can’t zone out and think thoughts that interest and entertain me.

That reason alone is enough to prevent me from replacing more of my runs with sessions on the elliptical machine. Where would I get the writing inspirations that come to me during long, solitary runs on country roads?

Thank you for hearing my runfessions, sisters (and brothers). This should keep me in good shape until next month.

I am linking up with Fairytales and Fitness for Friday 5, and Marcia’s Healthy Slice for our monthly Runfessions.

 

 

 

 

 

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58 comments

  1. So…your story about the sisters is probably what people think about my run/walk intervals. I pass them, I walk, they pass me. Repeat. I know I’m annoying people when I do this. I’m so sorry….

    Liked by 1 person

    • No, Wendy. I do run/walk in a lot of races. I do it in all of the trail races I run. There is nothing to apologize for. The thing that was so annoying was that the sister was running ahead and doubling back on a single track trail. There is no room to pass. Every time she did it, all of the runners in her way had to get off to the side of the trail to let her go by, and all of the runners that she passed were running as hard as we could.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Wendy, run/walk intervals are a totally different animal — you ARE running your own race. I’m also super careful to be mindful of the runners around me, to make sure I’m not just stopping in front of someone suddenly.

      I definitely think what that girl was doing, while coming from a good place, was disrespectful to the other runners.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Some women in my MRTT group did PHUNT. Sounds crazy! Did you sign up for next year? I hear there was a date change … That woman would have annoyed me to no end. Why are people so inconsiderate!

    Liked by 1 person

  3. That runner sounds super irritating! I’ve actually had that happen to me during a race as well. Luckily the back and forth didn’t last long but it was definitely messing with my running mojo.

    I don’t use the elliptical as often as I should. It really is a great piece of workout equipment!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’ve been hearing such great things about ellipticals lately. If only I had a larger family room . . . I want one, and a rowing machine . . . I’m sure I’d use them all — but probably not enough! And my family room is kind of maxed out with the treadmill and the stationary bike.

    What we really need is a transformer type exercise thingie — so one thing could do all those things. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Ah, the muddy shoe pic. Just a thought. Have you ever had your gait analyzed by a kinesiologist. When I had a chronic injury I got it under control by improving my form. I continue to make adjustments based on what hurts this year. Might be something to look at. Oh, and massage?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I never went to a kinesiologist, but I did have my gait analyzed by 2 different physical therapists. Once before I was injured! I knew something felt “different” in my stride, but he couldn’t find anything. 3 months later, I got injured. I think I figured out my problem. As I get tired, I tend to “slap” my feet, rather than rolling them on each stride. I do get a massage about once every month or sometimes two. That’s “hurts so good” kind of experience!

      Liked by 1 person

  6. I can totally see how that woman doubling back was annoying you. I’d feel the same way after numerous times of that. Pretty inconsiderate on single track if you ask me. Glad you’re enjoying the elliptical AND that your hip is happy on it! Thanks for linking!

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Well, it’s great to have another elliptical warrior! I’m lucky in that mine is situated right near a tv, If it was alongside my treadmill (in the mudroom with nothing but our deck and backyard to entertain me), I would not be spending much time on it. Our treadmill (17 years old) is SO loud, I can barely hear the music from my earbuds, so moving it to the basement (near the tv) would not benefit anyone much. Excuses, aplenty LOL

    Liked by 1 person

  8. oh my on the Grizzly-I assume no one ever him out there? That would really annoy me if someone was running back and forth like that on such a small trail. Just pick a pace as you say! I have to ask where did the name of the race come from? Is that the name of the town?

    Liked by 1 person

    • Ha! No…the bear was a joke. Just the RD’s warped sense of humor! The race used to be a fatass (free, no frills). It was organized by 2 guys whose names are Phil and Hunt. Therefore, Phunt!

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  9. It’s so funny that the elliptical isn’t inspiring writing ideas for you. When I’m in the midst of a writer’s block, pretty much the only thing that restarts it is a long session on one. But in your case, I do get how it’s a completely different activity and mental routine from running. I’m sure for others there are quite different activities to stimulate ideas, such as cooking, cleaning, driving, etc. To each his own. 😉 – Marty

    Liked by 1 person

  10. It is a hard thing to accept a slower finish time. We want to say, it doesn’t matter but….

    I bet next year’s when you are healthy again will be faster and you will forget about this year’s.

    Good for you liking the elliptical. I know I won’t. It’s even harder than the treadmill which I despise.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Exactly. I like to think my finish time is not important, BUT…

      Hey, Darlene, I don’t know if this is by design or not, but when someone comments on one of my posts, I like to go to their blog and comment on a post of theirs. Usually, I can do that by clicking on their name on their comment. I can’t do that with yours. You may want to check your settings to make it easier for people to comment on your blog? Maybe you have it set up that way on purpose, and that’s totally fine but I just thought you might like to know. I hope you can understand what I am talking about by my description.

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  11. Not being a runner, I am thereby spared the irritation of being repeatedly passed & discombobulated by another runner. However I have done lots of time on the elliptical and among its attractions is an excuse to watch stupid TV shows. Not much writing inspiration, true, but when else am I going to catch up on home makeovers and real housewives?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I have to admit, I have the same habit as you while on the elliptical, although I tend to gravitate to 20-year-old comedies like “Seinfeld” and “Friends”.

      Like

  12. Well running inside is boring and hard to tune out people, but it will keep you humming until you are able to get out on the trail again – I may be resorting to the exercise bike if I don’t get out this weekend. Otherwise, I’ll be starting with low daily mileage to avoid shin splints. Still enjoying those warm Florida temps Laurie?

    Liked by 1 person

    • I was wondering about you and the winter weather, Linda. You haven’t been posting as much lately and I was thinking that you might be having a hard time getting out. I am still enjoying the warm Florida sunshine. Bill and I went for a run yesterday and it was wonderful. We saw a little dirt road on our travels. I want to see if I can get him out on that dirt road today. Seeing lots of birds and wildlife too!

      Liked by 1 person

      • It was rather crummy weather-wise this week Laurie … we had that six-inch snowfall last Saturday, and then Sunday there was a lot of blowing and drifting snow and you could not see where it was clear pavement and we had those very low wind chills. I decided to write the post on Tuesday as I wondered when I’d next walk. Wednesday morning we had bumpy ice that was freezing rain over the snow in the driveway (snow still covered the cement in places) … luckily we had rain later in the day and 41 degrees so it melted the ice. But then we got a minor amount of snow again. I was quite frustrated and going to the Park without knowing how it will look down is a gamble, especially on a workday if I have to walk slowly or beside the path to keep from falling. They don’t plow the path and I figured it’d be clear as the streets were clear, but waited til today. Today was gorgeous – only 8 degrees, but bundled up and did five miles – thankful for that and would have done 6 miles, but didn’t want to risk shin splints as I’d not walked in 8 days. I am going to write a post later tonight. I have written posts just about the weather when it was endless days to not go out in the past. I really don’t mind the cold, as long as it is not slick to walk. But that said … Florida would be way nicer! The blogger named Kathy who does the “Backyard Bird Nerd” blog (I passed along the link to you awhile back) just took a trip to Florida and had some beautiful birds and other wildlife (alligator, snake) pics she took in her recent posts. Did you take Benji with you?

        Liked by 1 person

      • Wow! Winter has hit your location hard! I do read Kathy’s blog. Thanks for giving me the link. We got out yesterday and saw a lot of really cool birds, including 2 I don’t think I ever saw before (Anhinga and Louisiana Heron) near my sister’s house. I was hoping to see an alligator, but it was too cool (60 degrees) and not sunny. We did not take Benji with us. He is staying with a friend whose teenaged daughter loves Benji. She even allows him to sleep in her bed and Benji is not a small dog! Hoping you continue to be able to get out and walk!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Kathy’s pictures are beautiful Laurie – I especially enjoyed her Florida pictures … the spoonbill was very interesting. I read on Accuweather’s site that some of the alligators are preparing to submerge themselves and go into a torpor state in a few of the warmer states where it will dip low at night. Maybe that is why you didn’t see any. Well Benji lucked out too. I did walk some today, not at my regular venue, just a few blocks away, as we had two inches of snow and I likely would have had to walk on the side of the path. Yesterday the pathway was icy in spots, but the grass was as well. I thought the fresh snow would cover those icy patches and I’d be okay, but reluctant to take a chance. The sky is bright blue with puffy clouds and all the snow – looked pretty, but it can go away anytime it wants to.

        Liked by 1 person

  13. I was wondering how the Phunt went for you. Way to complete it, and way to keep finding ways to continue on with moving on the elliptical machine. I’ve never tried one, I don’t think I’d enjoy it, but never say never, right!? In the winter, I’m all dreadmill, it’s too risky to fall in the winter on the roads by our house. Take care, I hope the elliptical helps you to continue healing!

    Liked by 1 person

  14. I don’t think it’s just you being irritated – it’s bad trail etiquette to run back and forth on single track like that! Especially if she was expecting people to get out of her way instead of getting off trail herself.

    Liked by 1 person

    • I think it was bad trail etiquette too!

      Hannah, I don’t know if you do this by design or not. When someone comments on one of my posts, I like to click on the link in the comment and visit their blog to read their latest post. I can’t do that with your comments. You might want to check your settings. There is no link so that I can visit your blog. If you do this on purpose, sorry for the comment, but I just thought you might like to know.

      Like

  15. I’m never bothered by run / walkers but I am annoyed when people are running “together” on a narrow track thereby blocking anyone from passing.

    I used to love my elliptical. But I wasn’t a runner back then. I could easily put on my headphones and just play some of my favorite music loud and work hard throughout an entire album. Not sure I could do that now!!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Yes, that irritates me too. If run/walkers don’t interrupt my run, I don’t mind that at all. In fact, I walk in almost every race I run. It was just the fact that I had to move off the trail every time she passed me that bothered me.

      I usually watch old TV sitcoms while running on the elliptical! 🙂

      Like

  16. You saying that you are “frustrated at my inability to accept my present circumstances” certainly hits home with me. I hope we can both work our way past our injuries soon!

    And yes, that girl doubling back so many times would have been annoying to me, too. Once or twice, okay, but ten or more times, not okay; especially since she was making the other runners move over and stop for her as she looped back on the race course.

    Liked by 1 person

  17. You look great on the elliptical… and always! Way to go on the Phunt. I have been on the indoor treadmill myself with all this snow around and I agree that the distractions take away from thoughts for writing but the run is actually building (getting faster) because of the ability to record times etc.. good on one end at least. 😆🤗

    Liked by 1 person

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