Friday, February 20, 2015

Bones, Muscles, & Everything Else - Runner not Running

What a winter it has been, a sad winter

Its been a hit and miss year of not running.  What is a girl to do.
I only moved 130 miles in January, about half of them walking.  February is worse.  I may be able to get 80 miles in 95% walking.

Everything is connected.  Last winter my back went out making for an early winter of walking miles.  Things were just getting better, mileage increasing, hitting the trails, all going well.

A number of things may be the culprit, toes, back, old shoes, but life has been pain and an adventure in walking.

January 6, 2015 had my big toenail on each foot permanently removed.  That went very well.  I was still able to put in a 38 mile week.

I cut the toe box out of an old pair of shoes to be able to run while my toes healed.  A few days after that my left knee started hurting, then my right hip, then my right hip flexor, then my right butt cheek.  Its not a pain to just muscle through.  The leg will just quit moving if I try to run.
After seeking chiropractic help I found out my back/hips/pelvis is still out of alignment as it was last winter when it caused the back spasms.  Walking is slow and sometimes painful.  Running is out of the question.  

I've dropped out of Sylamore Trail 50K.  Little Rock Marathon will be a DNS.

How long will this take to heal, who knows.

Being proactive:

Lost 10 lbs this year thus far
Daily strength workouts, core, legs, arms
Daily foam roller and ball roller
Now I have started doing interval work on the bike

I won't have the miles on my legs, but my core will be stronger and I will weigh less.

What the rest of the year has to bring is yet to be seen.  I hope it involves running.

Sunday, January 11, 2015

We have a running club! We have a running club!

We have a running club!  We have a running club! 

Searcy Rush Running Club 

Join Here

December 2014 - Year End Numbers

Walk Walk Walk Walk, that has been the month!

Thanks to an  inversion table
Massage Me
White County Chiropractic

Mid December the decission was made to at least walk Jacob Wells 3 Bridges Marathon in Little Rock, Dec 27, 2014.  Running might be out, but with the early start I could walk 26.2.

This race starts at Two River's Bridge, routed east to and over the Big Dam Bridge, east again to and over the Clinton Library Bridge, then back to the start area.  From there a bit over 6 miles is still lacking.  The route goes over Two River's Bridge back into that area (I'm unsure of what that area is called).  The mileage is finished up back in that park ending at the finish area in the parking lot of the Two River's Bridge.  There is an aid station about every mile.  Even from early AM there was encouragement and smiling faces.

Running did happen :)  I did a run walk, run 1 minute/walk 30 seconds, slow and easy so very slow and easy.
Photo Courtesy of Arkansas Outside

When one babies the back to get better one also ends up babying the core.  At mile 20ish, my core decided to get even.  There was just nothing left to give.  It was challenging because walking was impossible as was running because of the opposing muscles not cooperating.

26.2 is hard, it is always hard.  We enter a marathon knowing it will hurt.  This time around, even though it hurt, I was able to keep my head in a good place.  When things started falling apart I told myself I knew how this feels and I have lived through it.  Its okay!  This mindset was a huge asset to getting though this in good spirits.  Normally by late race I am wondering why the hell I'm doing this!  I think I'm just not going to do this again, but I'm going to throw away my shoes and never run again!  This plan doesn't work out very well as the next marathon is already entered.

I give this race 2 thumbs up then 2 thumbs up again.  This would make a fabulous 1st marathon.  No hills to speak of other than the bridges, lots and lots of aid and encouragement.

2014 in Review

Miles run or walked = 1411

Not enough running, not enough core work.  If I'm going to achieve my goals I have to stop doing what hasn't been working, and do something differnt.  More running, as in more of my mileage from running instead of walking (this is injury dependent) More core work.   More strength training.

Lets bring on 2015

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Sunset Park 6/12/24 Hour Run.... Or, what was I thinking, I wasn't.

I love this run!
It starts on Black Friday, nothing better to do than avoid crowds and hang out with the running family.

Here are my results from the last 3 years.

2011 - 50.75 miles
2012 - 62.93 miles
2013 - 21.31 miles

2013 I didn't have a goal and performed as such.

2014 is in question.  Two weeks ago I tweaked my back, lower left side.  Its still acting up.  Yesterday felt quite a bit better.  Today (27, Nov 2014) it has been screaming all day long.  I will just have to wait and see how it feels tomorrow.  I do have a goal.  I'll tell about it after the run.

The question of 2014 is answered.  On Nov 11, 2014 I did my first CrossFit workout with Team RWB WOD with Warriors to raise money for our warriors.  I maxed out on what I could do.  No problem, but muscles very sore.  All is good.  Monday 17, 2014 dog problems, not my dog.  So this meant fence repair.  Strained something during fence repair, oh no!  
By Tuesday I could hardly move.  Wednesday meant a trip to the chiropractor, not much spine movement, things getting worse.
Thursday I was still sore, but not as sore as I had been.  I went to walk as far as I thought okay.  If I stopped having fun I was going to stop.

My spirits were very good!  Last year my body was okay, my spirit was down.  This year it was the other way around.   I walked a marathon then decided to go home.  I was having to stop every few laps and stretch, yoga, foam roller just to make the next few laps.  That told me it was time to go home.

Now its Dec 8, 2014.  I haven't run a step since.  The most I have traveled in any one day is 4 miles at a very slow walk.  
Chris purchased an inversion table for me.  It has done wonders.  I can manage the day now.  Some parts of the day are even pain free.

I am on the mend.  I hope to be able to walk The 3 Bridges Marathon on Saturday 27th.  We will see.  I won't walk it if the pain is bad or if I'm tight.

What adventures to be found in running. 

Thursday, July 31, 2014


26.25 on a treadmill
Yes, insanity!
So its in the 70's outside in the summer and this crazy chick runs a marathon on the treadmill, WHAT?????
Well, I've got some kind of bug, I feel fine, but can't get too far from the bathroom (TMI) I have felt kind of like a super wimp since breaking my arm/shoulder. I can't seem to move past 15 miles without wanting to rip my arm off and throw it in the ditch. It hurts so stinking bad. It takes me over 4 hours to migrate 15 miles, having a hard time calling myself a "runner".
Well, running a marathon on a treadmill is kind of badass. So maybe I can get my mojo back after doing something a bit on the insane side.
So.... done.

Monday, June 30, 2014

Outback In The Ozarks

This year has been a year of profound running experiences with Outback in the Ozarks being a large part.

Outback in the Ozarks is a 200 mile long relay race in Northwest Arkansas, starting in Eureka Springs, AR going through numerous state parks and through the Ozark Mountains.  Most teams consist of twelve members in two vans.  Only one van is active at a time as those six members take turns running their legs of the race.  Then there is a handoff to the other van, the other members as the first van members rest, recover, eat and get to the next van exchange zone.  This relay takes place the first weekend in May.  2014 is the second year of this relay.

In March Jennifer Pannell mentioned putting a team together.  I know I'm a slow runner so I suggested that maybe I would make a great support person unless they couldn't find enough runners.
Lucky me, the team decided that this slow runner was a-ok to join in the adventure.  So multi-workout days, multi-run days, and hill training became the normal routine around here.

On April 25th, 2014, one week before Outback in the Ozarks 2014, and one day before Ouachita Trail 50K, on a wee lil slow bike ride I took a fall.  Slick mud, a novice rider, and a curve in the bike path just didn't mix well together and it sure didn't end well.  I went down, superman pose style, fracturing the ball of the humerus on the left arm in two places.   X-rays determined that everything was tight together and a sling was going to be the stabilization method.  With one little slip summer plans changed in a second.

Jennifer was one of the first phone calls I made.  She had to know I was probably out.  I told her that as the slowest runner of the team, I now may have to walk every step, but was willing as long as the team was okay with that idea.  I didn't want to go there and have everyone frustrated with me.  Jennifer assured me all would be well.  It turned out to be a good thing that I didn't drop as another team member had to due to a family emergency.
Our team consisted of:
Van 1:

Van 2:
Me (Lisa Gunnoe)
Valerie Hunt
Julie Miles
Andrea Williams
Jennifer Pannell

We had challenges right from the start with the breakdown of a van.  Thanks to the nice guys at a parts store, who replaced the alternator without charging for labor, things were back on track.  This was all before we ever even got to Eureka Springs.  #idontquit turned out to be a theme of the weekend.

Early Saturday morning Van 1 was off to the start.  We just waited, ate breakfast, and waited some more till our turn.  Its kind of challenging just waiting because you don't know what is going on with the other team members.

I was first runner in our van.  My turn came soon enough with a beautiful trail section, with lots of hills, starting at Hobbs Nature Center. I found a back brace type wrap to wrap around my whole body, broken arm to give it stability.  It still hurt but no more than sitting home on the couch.  The lack of mobility made running much harder.  I did walk more than I wanted to walk.  My leg was just under five very hilly miles.
Waiting for my first run

Oh the beautiful trail

Almost done with my trail run
I love running, but I was glad to have my section over with, hand off the arm band, get some ice water and have a faster runner make up time.

Jennifer handing off to Andrea
 The idea was to just keep moving, just keep moving, #idontquit

Van 1's last leg, Andrea, come in to the exchange location just as it was getting dark.  We than had hours to shower, nap, eat and wait till it was our turn again.

About 2is AM Saturday morning it was time for Van 1 to rock and roll once again.  I was up first.
My leg started with a brutal 6 miles uphill in the dark.  The dark never did bother me, the constant uphill is what was a killer.  I thought I was doing well, making good time and moving forward when along came the race officials telling the team to pick me up and head for the next exchange point.  I only had 1/2 mile left in my leg, but we were behind the cut off.  So we drove to the exchange point and Valarie started her leg.

There are no pictures from the night portion of the run because, well, it was dark.

We were glad to be done with our legs and hand things off to Van 1.

Early Saturday afternoon we were getting ready to become active again, waiting at Devils Den State Park.  We were discussing strategy, we were behind on expected times chasing cutoffs.  I mentioned to the team that my next leg was more than six miles and most of it was steep uphills.  Valerie offered to swap legs with me.  What a hero!  She knew it would be hot, hard and uphill in the dust, but she really came through.  Thank you Valerie.  I took her up on the offer.  She saved us a lot of time.  It would have taken me two hours to get in that mileage.

Then came my turn to run.  Its funny, day one we were all cheering, taking pictures and such, day two we were quiet, encouraging but quiet.

Once again the cut off caught up to us on my leg.  This was twice I got taking off the road.  I did have a bit of a mental melt down over this.  The ladies, in their kindness and wisdom, just let me melt down and cry.  Its hard to be the weakest link.

Just keep moving

The migration continues

Jennifer waiting for gum 

Julie and Andrea handing off

Valerie and Jennifer

Andrea getting to know the foam roller!  OUCH!

Julie showing us how its done late in the race

We won the women's division.  

We finished the race dead last, but we finished.  We were the only all woman team.  Most of the teams used men for the toughest climbs, we used what we had, just us women.  One team even bothered to cheat, but that is another story.

I'm very humbled, grateful, and overwhelmed by this experience.  It is very close to my heart.  I started it not knowing what to expect having never participated in a relay before.
I learned about love, grace, leadership and true self-sacrifice during this amazing weekend.  Every woman adder her flavor of strong to the experience.  I learned about true leadership when I was melting down over my slowness and they just let me, talked me off the cliff and loved me anyway without judgement and negativity.  What a great example of being accepted for who, what, where and in the condition one finds themselves.  I owe much gratitude to these amazing ladies for their example of sportsmanship and pure guts.

Do I want to do it again, WHY YES I DO!!!
Next week, no, once a year is enough :)

P. S.
I left much out.  Its not my place to tell other people's stories.

My Legs:
Leg 7:
Starts at Hobbs Nature Center, 4.9 miles ends at Horse Trailer Parking Lot on Piney Road
This leg is all trail, it has some serious uphills.  One section just keeps going up and up back and forth over the top of a ridge.  It is runnable for a strong runner.  Use of gaiters is recommended, a waterbottle is fine.  There is one water stop on the trail.

Leg 19:
Starts at Pig Trail Cafe in Crosses Community, 5.36 miles ending at Brannon Mountain Cemetary
This leg is run in the dark, on pavement, up up and up, winding roads up.  Lots of hill training is required to get prepared for any leg in this race, but Leg 19 definitely.  Using a 30 step run/walk strategy is helpful to just move a little bit faster.

Leg 31:
Valery swapped me legs so she took Leg 30, dusty dirty uphill out of Devils Den State Park for 6.5 miles.
Leg 31 starts at Liberty 86 Church for 4.63 miles ending at Zinnamon Chruch.  This is rollers, mixed between dirt roads and paved.  Some uphills but not a lung buster.  On a good day I could have run the whole thing.