Monday, July 11, 2011

Muncie... FAIL

   Most of my loyal readers know that I am a pretty positive person, atleast I hope you can get that from my posts, but every now and then something happens that just makes it hard to be positive.  So pardon me if this post is more complaining and being positive, I'm going to try to be positive, but thought it only right to give you fair warning... That being said...
    As many of you know, I have been training HARD for my Muncie 1/2 Ironman, which was this past Saturday.  I have worked on my strength, watched what I've been eating and drinking and trying to make a good go at it and be injury free!  Jose is basically my miracle worker/ magician, he has strengthened me and gotten me to be so much stronger!  I no longer have knee pain or back pain, of which I can only thank him for that!  Sunday, July 3rd, I ran our local 10k race, its become the one race that my Dad and I do every year without fail.  Because of my knee injuries/problems, my Dad has beaten me every year!  It's become a little bit of a competition and the pressure seemed way more intense this year since I have been training so hard for this 1/2 Ironman.  Somehow, my Dad and I convinced my Mom, younger sister and my brother to run the 5k.  None of them had done a 5k before and it was a pretty big deal.  We all started together and then my Dad and I got into our rhythm and off we went.  Suddenly I realized that my Dad wasn't by me any longer, he was behind me, I couldn't even see him... that's weird!  That NEVER happens!  Should I slow down, or should I just keep trekking?  I figured, ehh, every man for himself and off I went!  We have 2 neighbors that also run this race and Tim (multiple time marathoner - pretty fast too) passed me around mile 4, then Mr. Thornton was on my tail, we played a little game of leap frog as I stopped to grab some water from my brother who showed up on his bike to cheer us on.  I am definitely a run/walk runner and so I'd pass him, to then have him pass me.  We did this for about 2 miles.  Finally right at the end, I always sprint in to the finish, so I kicked it up and off I went!  I ended up finishing before him and my Dad!!!  My first solo running race in 3 years that I didn't have any knee pain, I was ecstatic!  I couldn't believe I finally pulled it off!  My Dad ended up finishing about 5-6 minutes after I did, so it wasn't just my foot crossing before him! GO ME!!!
All the finishers in my family!!!

   On the ride home, I sent Jose a text message to tell him the good news!  I was literally on cloud nine!  But then something happened, and still I wish I knew what it was... but I got home and climbed out of the car and had a weird foot pain, I didn't really pay much attention to it because I just figured my foot was sore.  Then my brother's and I went to my friend's lake house and  hug out there for the day, I didn't do anything crazy strenuous at all, played a nice game of volleyball and just chilled on the lake front all day.  As the day progressed though, that weird foot pain increased and before I knew it, I was limping by the end of the day! WHAT?!  My brothers of course noticed immediately and I told them not to tell my parents, I knew what they'd say, and NOTHING was going to keep my from my 1/2 Ironman! 

   But, no matter how much I wanted to hide the limping, I couldn't do it.  Of course my Mom asked me what was wrong and I tried to play it off as if nothing was wrong.  I just made sure I iced it regularly and figured I'd be fine, thankfully my Dad took my side and agreed (atleast at first) that I didn't need to get it checked out.  Thankfully I work in a cubicle, where I am basically chained to my desk, so I didn't really have to be up and about. At lunch however, we always take a lap around the pond and just that slight walk had me limping and wincing in pain.  As the week continued, I started to panic, my foot wasn't getting any better and now the 1/2 Ironman was right upon me... What do I do!?  My Mom was still pushing for me to go get it checked and my Dad jumped on that band wagon and decided that before I race on it, I needed to know what I was dealing with.

    So Wednesday night, I went to the hospital to get x-rays, which was basically a HUGE waste of time.  The xrays came back saying that I didn't have any bone spurs but that they couldn't completely rule out a stress fracture because those sometimes aren't seen on standard xrays.  They said that it was probably just a strained tendon or ligament and that of course I should stay off of it and ice it.  I went to my parents house afterwards feeling pretty depressed and defeated, how could this happen a week before my race?!  I didn't do anything abnormal, so how did this happen?!  My Dad suggested that I go test it out and go for a ride and a run before I made my decision on the race.  So I hopped on my mom's bike and went for a 5mile ride, and felt OK, but felt that I slightly had to adjust my pedaling... great... Then I dropped the bike off and went for a mile or so run, which was HORRIBLE!!!  Every time my foot hit the pavement, it felt like a nail was slamming up my foot into my ankle.  Great, now what do I do?  Pull the plug on my A race for the year or just suck it up and do it?  Once I got back to my parents house, it took everything within me to not start bawling my eyes out in defeat. 

    Thursday came around and my foot still wasn't feeling any better and I had to make my decision.  Since Muncie isn't very close to me, I had to decide if I was going to go so that if I wasn't I could cancel my hotel reservation.  I got such mixed responses from my friends, some thought I shouldn't do it and why was this even a debate or a question, others thought that I could push through it and would regret it if I didn't race.  But of course no one could make the decision but me.  I'm stubborn a DNF is not something I am willing to have on my record, so if I started the race, you better believe that I was going to finish it, but is that even remotely smart?  What if it is something more serious and this race ends my racing career? Am I ready to sit on the side lines for the rest of my life when I am only 24?

   So after weighing all of my options (and trust me... I did weigh them all), shedding many tears and eating WAY TOO MUCH Dairy Queen ice cream, I decided to sit this race out.  This is my first race EVER that I have sat out due to an injury, typically I just push through.  But an Ironman race, be it a 70.3 or 140.6, you need to be on the top of your game because it is so physically demanding and strenuous.  So it's true, I'm having a pity party weekend, have shed way more tears than seems normal for a race and am feeling utterly defeated.  I know, its just one race, there are many others but I'm still upset.

   I am so proud of all of my Suburban Multisport teammates that participated in the race!  You are all an inspiration to me and I appreciate all of the support you have all given me!  Thank you Cathy for picking up my race packet and t-shirt for me! 
As my Dad said, it's the most expensive shirt I've ever bought and I deserve it just for all of the training I did.

  So, what now?  What does this mean?  My Dad always says that one of the things he likes best about me is my resiliency, that I seem to hit a bunch of obstacles that set me back for a second or two until I figure out how to overcome them.  So that's what I'm going to do!  I've had my pity party weekend, and now I'm done!  I am not going to loose sight of my goals, I am still going to keep my sight set on my full IM race next summer!  I am going to train hard and make sure that this doesn't happen again!  I'm going to listen to my body, I am going to train hard with Jose and I will not let this hold me back.  I WILL BE AN IRONMAN!!! or IronWoman!!! 

  Thank you all for the support, it means the world to me and keeps me going when I feel defeated!