Friday, July 6, 2007

Holding Off and then Being Held Back

Well, I’m going to have to agree with Jen C. about waiting for a fully recovery before I race (Jen, by the way, will be kicking butt in her first Ironman in two weeks from Saturday—good luck, girl!). I think I’m finally realizing the value of good advice.

The next race on my schedule is the Winking Lizard “A Shot in the Dark” 4-Mile Race, which is a strange race to me because it starts at 5:30 p.m. on a Saturday. My hope, however, is that most of the other people in the race will have spent the better half of the day inside Winking Lizard and at the bar. Not because I’m desperate to win the race, but because it seems like it would be entertaining to watch how someone might travel rapidly four miles on foot when they shouldn’t even be driving. Maybe I’m just a goof.

So, on my road to recovery, I’m taking to running every other day or so to give myself proper rest. While Wednesday’s run went really well, I was definitely running with the looming fear of the sciatic pain returning. It didn’t… but the fear was enough to scare me into good-advice submission.

And as part of the resting regiment, I did my morning and evening yoga (should I even mention that anymore if I don’t want to be labeled too fiercely?) and swam 1,800 yards (~1 mile) free straight at lunch.

It was an interesting swim: the back of my cap tore right before I jumped in the water and then the front ripped open as I turned into 1,000 yards. And it was right around 1,200 yards that I was severely regretting those side-swept bangs I cut in spring 2004—and have never quite been able to get rid of—because they were the perfect length to cover both my eyes.

While I found a rhythm of bubble-blowing that would pushing my hair out of my face when I would either take a breath or spot the wall, I still had what was left of my cap fastened to my head with a goggle strap, and the cap shard was filling with water. I had kept it on to contain what it could of my hair (my hair is long… and it wouldn’t be a healthy sight if it were free to float as I swam—in fact, one strand did get lose and wrapped around my left arm twice. Ouch!), but it started tugging at my goggles.

For my last 200 yards, I swam with one goggle lens on my cheek and the other half filled with water, both eyes covered with bangs and my left arm tangle in hair. Pretty gross. Sure, I could have stopped, pulled my hair back, fixed my goggles. But as I was swimming, I realized that conditions in Lake Erie or Portage Lakes probably would be ideal with flailing arms, aggressive attitudes and not a few waves. Besides, do I seem like someone who would let a few strands of hair get in her way? Well, maybe if the hairs are on the back of a black bear.


JenC said...

Thanks for the shout out!

I think you'll like the Winking Lizard race. I felt more warmed up for it than a morning race. I don't think people imbibe beforehand, but there is a beer garden after (not sure if it is free beer or not).

Way to gut through your swim! I'm so anal that I have 5 caps in my bag just in case mine breaks or someone else needs one. Too bad I wasn't there to hook you up. Hair wrapping around your arm will be good practice for when your wetsuit strap wraps around.

Jim said...

Good idea of running every other day while you recover. Don't fret about those mileage "challenges" - do what's right for the bod.