Saturday, August 8, 2009

A Strange Twist of Fate: Hills ARE My Friend (That and the Many Uses of Garland)

BLASPHEMER! I know. How dare I befriend the very foe who so often is the culprit responsible for sucking the very life out of a runner's legs mid-run!

But yes, it is true. I can no longer call hills my enemy or complain about the lack of flatness on an advertised as such course.

You see it seems that every since I went home with that fancy schmancy age group award, I've had a touch of knee trouble (no one panic, just a touch). Now there's a story behind this but for the sake of brevity, we'll save it for some other time. Let's just say it's been on and off for a couple of weeks now, but usually on from about the 2.5 -3 mile mark of my treadmill runs.

Today, however, I was out on my favorite trail for a 16 miler (in the pouring rain I might add. I think I get bonus points for that. Seriously, pouring and pretty much the entire time. Almost as if God was issuing some sort of challenge to the very hi tech running fabric I was sporting. "Oh yeah, runfastmommy t. See if you can wick this!" God won. Big time.). True to form the knee trouble kicked in just before the first time I passed my car. I stopped. Tossed my outer layer and picked up a water bottle. that was a problem. Sharp pains cut me like a knife in the right knee. So I jogged a little...walked a little...jogged a little...walked a little....stopped and tried to push my knee cap into some place a little more comfortable than the painful location it was currently residing in...and jogged some more.

Then I hit a nice hill. One which I was NOT looking forward to. But shocker of all shockers, while I dug into that hill I noticed that the knee pain was virtually gone. Hmmm...interesting. Now the downhill on the other hand...not so good. But let's not talk about that. For the rest of the run, I was actually looking forward to each of the next hills. By about 10ish the numbness that seems to accompany me on most of my long runs had kicked in, and I swear to you I ran those last 6 faster than the first 6 with no knee trouble. Although I will admit, I ran the first 6 pretty slow...which leads me to the

Does rain slow your time down on runs?
(please say yes, please say yes, please say yes)

Because I was mighty slow the first half of my run. And by rain I mean showers, but no lightning, thunder or ...ahem...wind. Just the heavy wetness of the rain on your clothes, that's enough to add at least a minute a mile. Right? (looking only for an affirmative type answer here please).

'Til next time...

PS. Oops almost forgot!! The many uses of garland. If you read my last post about using garland on my runs, you may be patiently waiting to see what exactly I do with it. Sorry for the delay, I was having fun reading the guesses and then got a little distracted by the end of my 3 year old's swimming lessons and a little town hall meeting in my area.

But without further ado the answer is (drumroll please)...I use gold sparkly Christmas tree garland to make a no fly (or no play, or no ride your little princess car, or no approach mommy with questions) zone around my treadmill for my 3 year old. She used to be afraid of it, but as of late she's been getting a little bit braver. So mid-run recently when I was finally wore out of jumping off to back her up, I grabbed the only thing I could find long enough in the basement to rope it off....garland.

Does it work you might be wondering? Well I've had her down there about 3 times since I first created the no-go zone and the last time we went down there, I said "Chloe, what's the rule?" and she answered back "I MAY NOT cross the garland." And she didn't. So props to all the people who guessed and had some other interesting suggestions for using garland while running. You can check them out here. But I'm afraid, I'll have to come up with some other reason to give away some E-Gel to some deserving soul since nobody quite figured it out. Hmmm....


runnanna said...

oh yes, rain can slow you down! And ladies and gentlemen, Kelly is not kidding-it was raining buckets today. My trouble was that it kept washing the sweat down into my eyes and it stung! Also, I slowed down a little so that I wouldn't slide/fall. You've got to hop over puddles. The great part though-you have the trail virtually to yourself and the rain was refreshing and so cool! I kept thinking about the Crim coming up and how hot it usually is..boy would I love to have today's weather for the Crim!

Lani said...

still checking in with you, though I've gotten a little sidetracked! I officially signed up for Team in Training now! I am getting rid of my separate running blog, though, and going with my main blog to keep track of my progress. (Just can't keep up with 3 blogs!) Just wanted to let you know in case you look for it and it's gone!
And yes, rain totally slows me down. I hate feeling all soggy and chafey.