I ended 2008 with nearly 1200 miles of training and racing. That is pretty amazing considering how I started the year. Plantar fasciitis, an imbalance of my sacro-iliac joint and neck pain prevented me from running a step during the last 6 months of 2007. After 38 years of running I was beginning to think I was done for good. Even then I wasn't quite ready to give up.
On a cold January evening while out for a walk I decided to jog for 1 minute to see how I would feel. Nothing hurt any more than usual so after walking for a minute I jogged for another. I continued this walk/jog pattern for 20 minutes assessing how my body was reacting to the increased stress. This is how my journey from the abyss started, one minute at a time.
I made slow but steady progress throughout the year. I increased my mileage in small increments, added some short trail races and started a long training buildup for a fall marathon. Things didn't always go smoothly and I did have setbacks when my symptoms worsened, but I never gave up on my goal to run the Stone Cat Marathon. My persistence would be rewarded. On a wet, mild morning in November, I completed my first trail marathon in 4:26!
- Finished the Stone Cat Marathon under my time goal and survived the Wapack Trail Race.
- Met some great people on the trail. A few became new friends and fellow racing warriors.
- Started snowshoe running. This should help me make it through my winter doldrums.
- Still plagued with PF and neck pain.
- Can't run of pavement making it difficult to train at times.
- Did not complete my first Ultra due to an ankle injury.
Overall I am pleased with what I DID accomplish in 2008. I am looking ahead to 2009 and hope to follow a path to improved health, consistent training and faster racing.