I remember climbing Holy Jim some years back during Old Goat 50, at about mile 37, when I didn’t think I could take it anymore. Staggering and nearly defeated, I had a quick chat with who I thought was a running friend (actually, he was a stranger, but I was close to delirious and he looked just like my friend). Downcast, I looked up from the ground, eeked out a smile and said to him, “I don’t know how much longer I can do this.” My friend (A.K.A. the stranger) said to me, “Just go until you cry uncle.”
I spend most of my training hours in the gym nowadays, not because of the weather, as our summer on the coast is pretty dang mild. I’m spending most of time in the gym because my plantar fasciitis has become too much to bear. I am so flipping sick of fighting against the pain, I am ready to rest.
This past Tuesday before work, I took a quick 6 mile run down to the seashore, and though it was cool and breezy, I could not have suffered more had I been hit by a car! I am here to report that plantar fasciitis does not do well on cement. In fact, I think running on cement is about the worst thing you can do when you suffer from this condition.
Aside from that freakish hell, I kept to my planned route (an out-and-back to where the sidewalk ends in Capo Beach). The parking lots were surprisingly empty. The campgrounds even had lots of empty spots. The lawn at Doheny was unusually brown. Most lawns are brown nowadays due to our drought and the mandatory reduction in watering. I left my water bottle at home (as there’s a drinking fountain about every fifty feet) and carried with me my phone (which accounts for these pictures I snapped along the way – snapping pics helped to keep my focus outward rather than inward on the pain).
Thursday, I said “screw the foot,” and headed out to Aliso/Woods for an out-and-back up Cholla Trail to West Ridge which lead me to Top of the World in Laguna Beach. Even at 2 o’ clock in the afternoon, the weather was breezy and cool. And apparently, Canyon View Park has been watering their lawns more than Doheny State Beach.
Canyon View Park off of Canyon Vistas Road, a back entrance into Aliso/Woods Wilderness:
I ran 6.5 miles on trails, and though my foot felt a lot better compared to running on cement, I fear the damage has been done. Pain is immense, my ankle is swollen, I have a knot in my arch, and when I’m resting my arches are constantly taped. I used to pride myself on injury-free running. Dang it.
I’m not sure when I will be back. I am not registering for the Harding Hustle at the end of this month. I have not registered either for Twin Peaks.
And this makes me sad.
But this beauty does not: