Yes, I did make thirty days of my Easter Streak – ran every day for the month of April. I got out late morning on Wednesday, April 30, in the midst of a heat wave. And I took off up Arroyo Trabuco Trail for the final run of my streak.
My Gateway to Arroyo Trabuco Trail (in the parking lot of a strip mall in Las Flores, behind a Taco Bell & some other establishments):
The best thing about Day 30’s run was that I got shade. Lots of it. Oh, the glory! What would I do without shade?
I ran through cool, dark hallways of shade for about three miles. My goal was to run around ten miles – that way, I’d hit my “pie in the sky.” What, you may ask, was my “pie in the sky?” The answer: breaking 170 miles for the month. I didn’t want to merely hit 170. I wanted to bust through the door. I haven’t done that in a long time.
The coolness of these trails helped me to get my groove when I thought I wasn’t going to get my groove. And just when I felt a comfortable confidence on these refreshing trails amidst sweltering heat, I kissed the dirt.
Oh no! That’s right. I tripped on a rock while running slightly downhill, and I flew through the air. Astonished that I was falling, I fought the fall, and it turned out badly. There was no semblance of a roll. No, there was only forward momentum. Then a thud. Then another thud. And one more for good measure.
The few seconds of impact jarred me so much, I didn’t immediately hop back up. That took another couple seconds. And then I sobbed as I searched about for a place to sit. I don’t know why, but I didn’t want to sit in the dirt. I think that it was just too far away. So, I wandered up the trail a bit. The fall rattled my body and brain to an extent that I wasn’t sure what to do. I needed to talk to someone.
About a tenth of a mile later, I found a log to sit upon and phoned my husband. He’s received these calls from me before – not terribly often, but enough to get directly to the important questions. Where are you? Did you hit your head? Eventually, he said that I should come home. But . . . 170. I wanted to break 170!
And so I ran. When my husband texted me that I was a “badass,” I texted back, “Not Really.” And I ran some more with an aching knee (but not too bad) and a throbbing arm. What I wanted more than anything was to wash the wounds. But my wounds were open, and I didn’t want to give bacteria in the streams direct access into my body. I did take the time however, to “document” what I could with photos.
I ran Arroyo Trabuco on into O’Neill park. Relief set in because finally, I was able to wash my wounds. And they did NOT feel better after that. In fact, it was just when I was feeling better that I went and washed my arms and legs with soap and water. The dull aching immediately returned. Oh well, it was time to suck it up. I had 6.5 miles left on the back portion of my Arroyo Trabuco out-and-back.
I made it back to my truck dinged. I think I lost more than the usual amount of brain cells in this adventure. I did though, get in a little over thirteen miles. The remainder of the day, I ached all over.
The next day, I felt as if I were in an automobile accident – like my whole body had lurched forward and hit the dashboard. I thought about running, but then decided, that’s it. I have accomplished what I set out to do – I ran every day for the month of April. I had to fight an inner battle not to run on Thursday. I went to the gym instead and worked-out on the elliptical crossramp. After 5 miles, I said, “That’s enough of that!” and went home feeling achy, like I was coming down with the flu.
My arm wound felt warm all day, and that night I felt like I had a mild grade flu. It was a wonderful night of celebration for the family however, as we all went to watch our son perform with his high school chamber group (our oldest plays violin). Back home late, I continued to pick out tiny pebbles from my arm. My husband poked around, as I winced in pain, for pus. Then I dosed the hardening scab with hydrogen peroxide. Finally today, so many, many hours later, I am feeling better.
Thanks to all for reading the wondrous journey of my running for 30 consecutive days. I loved it. At the same time, I am just slightly relieved its over.
ps. I hit 177.41 miles (285.51 km) for the month of April.