TALES FROM THE TRAIL (AND SOMETIMES THE ROAD TOO)

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Friday, October 8, 2010

Come Hell or High Water

First, sickness kept me from the trail.  Then rain.  I was going to run today “come hell or high water.”  Hmmmm.  Not exactly sure what that means.  For me, it meant, I’m running NO MATTER WHAT.  I need to get away, unwind from loads of stress.

And so I woke with back spasms!  **#%%##!!!!!

They were so bad, horrific is more the word.  I cried from the pain.  They attacked about every 15 minutes, literally throwing me to the ground.

Hmmmph!  I am so sick of troubles with running – injuries, heat exhaustion.  It’s time to end.

I started with the ibuprofen at 7:00 AM.  By the last school drop after 9:00, I had taken a total of five, and felt spasms no longer.

Like I said, I was running no matter what.  Still, I lied to myself as I drove to Canyon Vistas Park.  I thought that I’d just check it out, if there was no pain whatsoever, I’d run, little pain, I’d take a long, long walk, lots of pain, I’d just lay down in the park for a few hours and enjoy the the cool breeze.  But really, deep down, I knew that I was running.

I took off through Canyon Vistas Park walking, because I didn’t want to pound the pavement.  As soon as I hit dirt I began my run.  Slow, very slow to start, I ran down Wood Canyon, through shady groves, fearful of returning pain.  I tried to wipe those thoughts from my mind and think of nothing.  Instead, thousands of thoughts dashed in and out of my brain.  Relax, don’t resist, I told myself and ran all of Wood Canyon Trail completely pain free!

The Glory of a Cool Breeze and SHADE on Wood Cyn Trail

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Feeling good, I decided (actually I had decided yesterday) to run up Meadows Trail.  Virtually empty, I began the climb with a mountain biker who whizzed off ahead.  Far in the distance I could see two hikers with walking sticks about half way up Meadows.  I wondered to myself whether I could catch them.  Then I just put my mind on nothing and began running that steep, mile-long switchback up to the ridge. 

Eventually, I noticed the hikers pretty dang close.  I thought to myself (again), well I hope I don’t pass them because then I’ll have to talk.  After this morning’s attack on my back, I wasn’t in much of a talking mood.

Looking Back on Aliso Canyon as I make the climb up Meadows Trail

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About three-quarters up Meadows’ climb (probably more) I came upon the two hikers.  One of the men said, “You’re not gonna shame us and run past us.” 

I smiled and laughed.

The other man said, “You better not be able to talk.” 

He really said that.  I had to laugh, having thought that I didn’t want to pass them earlier because I didn’t want to talk.  And so I began talking, like I was going to go into a long drawn out conversation.  Then I laughed and said, “just kiddin’, I can hardly breath.”

I was exaggerating.  I could breath, and pretty well.  I was just breathing pretty dang hard.  I met the men (Phil and Eugene) on the ridge too.  They wanted to go down another way, so I mapped out about 4.5 miles for them, taking Mathis back down to Wood Canyon.  I don’t know if they decided on that route, because I had to rush off to make it in time to pick up my youngest son.  I still felt good and pain free, just a little tired. 

Rock Sculpture @ top of Meadows Trail

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Me (@ Top of the World / Meadows side)

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Goats at Top of the World

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After running through the residential neighborhood, I ran West Ridge much faster than I usually do.  Time was extremely low – even my fastest pace probably wouldn’t make it in time.  I pounded Cholla Trail then ran back up to my car.  I was late.  No time to stretch, I jumped into the car and raced off to the school.  I hit every single red light and was late arriving to pick up our son.  Fortunately, this was the one day his class was let out late.  My little one was none the wiser.  My oldest however, who stayed home sick today,  was aghast that I ran nearly ten miles after all that pain this morning.

I thought that I was “home free” from the spasms.  And I was so glad to have finally hit the trail.  THEN, after picking up middle boy, the pain attacked again.  Needless to say, I’m researching back spasms tonight.

Miles run today:  9.68

Today’s Elevation Profile

My Activities aliso wood cyns 10-8-2010, Elevation - Distance

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