Monday, May 5, 2014

May Update

Well, it's been awhile.  Sorry!
This blog is mostly to share what I think are interesting trails, races, and places; and how to get there and enjoy them on feet, skis, or a couple of wheels.  Even when I haven't written in awhile, I'm always pleased to see people reading (and hopefully learning something) about cool stuff in Colorado and the Mountain West, much the same way I enjoy reading other people's tales and beta.
I do have a few things I hope to write about of general interest and reflection, and hopefully even more as the summer kicks off.  I hesitate on more of the boring, personal details which are less useful.  Then again, I'm forgetful and now enough that I sometimes go back and try to figure out what I was doing (or didn't do) at various points throughout the year.

Briefly, I was both busy and sick for the whole month of April.  I got some sort of sinus infection in late March, the week after a bit of a challenging run at Salida.   This was planned to be a big "March Madness" weekend of miles. J and I both got sick, and of course, I thought it would pass quickly and ignored it.  I took a short jog that Friday to the base of Green Mtn., just over 2 miles away, and felt tired enough that I laid down on the grass for about 10-15 minutes.  Bagged the rest of the run and jogged/walked home and slept.  Slept during the day and didn't run at all during the weekend.  Then it moved into my lungs and I was coughing every morning and night.  Did some occasional jogs and felt a little better, so went ahead with a big workout on Round Mountain that Saturday.  Felt OK and not fast, but still ran a little faster than the previous time I did it, mostly by being smarter and saving myself for the final downhill.  Naively hoping to back that up with another long run the next day, but started feeling worse with sinus problems throughout the day, and then felt terrible the next morning.
Backed those plans down to a shorter run with Clark and Ostrom, until I actually started running and felt like death, so took a shortcut back and laid down on the bench at the TH waiting for the other guys.  Driving home, coughing fitfully, I pulled off halfway back to Denver, at the Johnstown exit, to take a nap.  It wasn't long (actually I don't know exactly how long) and I had the radio on enough that I killed my car battery and needed a jump.  Nobody stopped when I had the hood open, but the first pick-up truck did as soon as I got my cables out and stood there (thanks!)

With an obvious infection settling in, I spent the next few days sleeping whenever I could.  I wasn't going to consider antibiotics until >10 days passed without any improvement.  I did start to get a little better so avoided going to the doctor or drugs.  Jogged when I could, which non-runners might not understand but otherwise runners would know that it helps loosen and clear things up.  Got better slowly, although it turns out I was coughing at least in the morning every day of April, ugh.
Stopped worrying about losing fitness and instead focused on being able to get out without feeling terrible.   Still rode the mt. bike a few times, and raced at Platte River Half, and OKC marathon, which felt more like training runs, but enjoyable nonetheless.
Not sure what to expect at Quad Rock in a very stacked field, but looking forward to feeling 100% in mind and health, with my legs a few weeks behind from what I'd like.  Really excited to be out on the trails with friends and see it as a new beginning to the season.  At the same time, I've probably gone into June the past few years being overtrained for summer races, and I focused too much on splits and competition.  Instead, the big goal of Bighorn is doing just fine: a chance to be out on beautiful trails with friends, especially with a cool and supportive small town near the summer solstice.

I hadn't been that sick for almost two decades, as I spent large chunks of my childhood/teenage years with extended health problems with allergies/sinuses/asthma, so I don't take health for granted.   I know I've had it worse, and many other people regularly do, so each day and experience is a (secular) blessing. Losing a few weeks reminds me that, what I really like, is just being out there.  The green Spring is certainly helping as well, as I'm finally feeling healthy and happy again.  More stories coming soon, and see you out on the trail!

Green Mountain (center) aptly named.  Finally.
(L-R: S. Table, Green, Dakota Ridge, Mt. Morrison)


  1. Glad you're healing up. Thought of you today when I ran by your building en route to an hour on S. Table Mtn. Hope to see you out there soon.

    1. Thanks Jim -- next time, put up the "Bat" signal and I might join you...perhaps a giant "M" on, say, Mt. Zion/Lookout to get my attention?
      See you on the trails soon!

  2. (secular) Holy Whatever !!! I didn't realize you were that sick for that long ! I believe I have a bit of cred, here, when I say ... sorry. That's a misery. Glad you kicked it, and got your kick back !

    1. Knowing your story -- and seeing the colour of your infection (thanks, btw) -- I know you really had me beat!
      This was nothing, just a low-level thing that lasted longer than usual. I think sunshine ends up being the best disinfectant.
      *You* get well, and see you soon?