Tuesday, December 30, 2014

The BIG 5-0!

My 50th Birthday=10 year Bloggerversary!

I am not sure what is more surprising to me..that I am 50 years old or that I have been blogging for 10 years?

50.  I really can’t believe it. . I feel blessed to have reached this number! I have so many good friends who have reached and passed 50 and 60 with such strength and grace. I am in great company!

Running wise 2014 was a good year for me. I was able to heal from my broken ankle I suffered at Superior 100, 2013. I wasn’t sure how my comeback would go. I was able to finish Zumbro 50 Mile, Savage 100 Mile, Afton 50K, Voyageur 50 Mile and Superior 100.  That’s a victory! I reached all of my goals.

Unfortunately it came at a cost! I’ll have this Morton’s Neuroma removed on January 9. I’m anxious to get this done and to begin the healing process. 

I’m a goal setter. I just am not happy with lollygagging along, it’s not in my make-up. I've tried running 3-5 miles for fun daily and it just isn't me. Someday it may be, but not now. For 2015 I still hope to run Gnarly Bandit.  The only obstacle I see here is whether or not I’m healed and trained for Zumbro 100 in April. I’d prefer to have some high mileage weeks in at this time, but, alas, that is not happening. My foot is just too painful to run upon for more than 4 miles.  I am not going to rush it. Ha!

50 years old...time to get in the best shape of my life..to run the races that make me feel alive! Cheer to 50 and 2015. I've got this! 

Happy New Years to all of you! Make 2015 your best so far!  I will, too!

Thursday, December 18, 2014

Morton's Neuroma Surgery

I have made the decision to have foot surgery. Surgery will take place on January 9 at the Centennial Lakes Surgery Center by Dr. Judith Hector of Twin Lakes Ankle and Foot Clinic. After a few opinions I found my way to her via  Helen Scotch and Valeria LaRosa, a friend and fellow ultra runner who had her perform the same procedure a few years ago, successfully. I’m praying that my outcome is the same.

I’ve had two shots of cortisone to no avail, tried pads, wider shoes, taping and separating of the toes. Nothing is working.  

I first noticed this pain while running Superior 100. I thought there was  a blister on the ball of my foot but there was nothing that I could see. There were blisters everywhere else!  As I healed and recovered from finishing Superior 100, the pain in the ball of my foot never went away. It felt like I was walking on an acorn.

Morton’s Neuroma is the diagnosis I received after my first appointment that I made with a sports doc.  I had a shot of cortisone which did nothing. I then went to Dr. Judith Hechter of Twin Cities Ankle and Foot Clinic where I received another shot of cortisone and a lengthy discussion of treatments. I’ve tried them all.  After another appointment this week I’ve decided to have surgery.

I’ll go in at 945 on Friday the 9th and will be back home in the afternoon. She will make an incision at the top of the foot, inbetween  toes 3 and 4. She’ll cut and remove the nerve and neuroma.  I’ll have about 20 stitches and wear an open toed surgical shoe for 10 days.  Over the weekend I’ll keep the foot elevated. On the third day I’ll meet with the doctor again to make sure there is no infection and to confirm that I’m doing well.  I will be able to work, to drive, etc. 

Dr. Hechter says the neuroma is quite large. The size of a quarter. I wasn't surprised.

I’m tiring of this non running business. Once a week really isn’t cutting it. After the Donut Run I was in extreme pain. Each time I run the pain is worse and the nerve zings me for the remainder of the day and the next. It’s really quite horrible.Walking on an acorn is one thing, constant zinging is another.

Walking is painful, running is worse. Swimming is boring. The elliptical hurts. I am able to stand it one place with little weight on the foot and lift weights. At least that is something. 

I recovered from hysterectomy. I recovered from a broken ankle. I’ll recover from this, too. It isn’t easy though. I’m feeling overwhelmed.  I feel like my sobriety is being tested. Like my mental health is being tested. I feel like I’m getting fat – ter by the day.  Maybe it is the first empty nest during the holidays, maybe it is the anniversary of my mom’s death, maybe it turning 50 and not running Across the Years, who knows.

It’s only my foot. It isn’t cancer, right? Buck up, girl.

Tuesday, December 09, 2014

25K Donut Run: 2014

I was so excited to see that Jordan was going to offer another Donut Run! If you remember I took part in this run last year and had an absolute blast. 

Interestingly enough last year  as of race day I hadn’t had a run longer than 5 mile distance after breaking my ankle at Superior 100 in September. I ran 16.5 at the Donut Run and was feeing fine. Healed!

This  year as the run approached I had not run longer than 6 mile distance since Twin Cities Marathon in October as I have been dealing with Morton’s Neuroma injury which took place at Superior 100 in September.  That Superior 100, it tries to do me in.  I can’t wait to run it again in 2015!

The Donut Run is a FREE run that is the brain child of Jordan. This was the third annual, I believe. Last year there were under 50 that took part, this year over 150 were going to start! 

Jordan offered a 5 mile, a 10 mile and a 17 mile run. The course that  I chose was the 17 mile again..I figured I’d turn around and head back to Lake Nakomis if my nerve became unruly.  Deep down I knew I’d suck it up and run the 17 regardless.

I was wondering if after all of the fun I had last year if this  year would seem like a let down. You know how that sometimes happens?  Not with runs, but with other things in life?  There was no let down. I had a blast.

I arrived to Lake Nokomis at 735. Pretty early for the 800 start but I thought parking might be a pain. It wasn’t. I found a spot and meandered to the start where I knew coffee would be served. After I drank a cup there I refilled my cup and headed to my car to wait.  It was downright balmy outside. Last year it -20F plus high winds. Today it  was 20F with NO winds. The sun was out!  Amazing.

At the start I ran into Maria. Again, as last year, we ran together the  whole way. Yippee! It was quite funny how we ended up together with John Taylor again, just like last year, for most of our run.

We began to run away from Nokomis toward bakery #1, A Baker’s Wife Pastry Shop, (no web page) our first bakery. Neither of us had to use the bathroom  nor were we going to eat here, so we just ran past.

Jordan Photo
On our way to bakery #2, Bogart’s Doughnut Co., we ran along toward Lake Harriet and Calhoun. We took the steps up away from the lake and there was Bogart’s. I walked in and became anxious. It was very tiny but smelled delicious.  I went outside to wait, ate a gel here and pulled out my Advil. My foot was killing me. I was trying to spread my toes so that the pressure would be relieved upon my nerve. I purchased  a bottle of water. It was so nice not to have to carry any drink along.  Maria purchased something here…I think it was a Nutella filled donut!  

The sun was shining, it was a beautiful morning. Maria, John, Travis, Mike and a few others were enjoying ourselves while running through the city. We were all smiles, telling stories.

Maria was a compass. She knew where to turn and which bakery was up next.  Isle Bun and Coffee was next. We ran along Lake Calhoun, talking about everything. I enjoyed this run so very much. Maria and I have known each other for many years have loads of fun  with one another. 

Jordan Photo

I could smell bakery #3- Isle Bun and Coffee a few blocks before we approached. I smelled icing, coffee and caramel!  MMMM!  This shop was upscale-Isles area, Uptown. We walked in and the little shop was full of residents and some runners. Maria got in line for a puppy dog tail. They were offering free lemon water. I had a few glasses and went outside to sit in the sun. The sun felt fabulous. I saw down and waited for everyone. Took another Advil and had a gel.

John came out with a mango filled scone, Travis with a puppy dog tail. Travis ordered the last one so they were creating  a new batch for Maria.   They smelled divine.  I stretched, soaked up the sun and smiled. John and Travis ran out ahead.

On to bakery #4, Glam Doll Donuts, which was on our route last year. I love the bright pink Christmas tree, the vibe of the place: big fixtures, lots of ceramic and glass, nice bathroom-which I took advantage of!  Bacon seemed to be the theme here.  

The route between bakery #4 and #5 was the longest stretch of all.  I ate a few gels, an aid station was set up by fabulous volunteers. We ran along the River, soaking in the sunshine and enjoying the view. We spoke of the past, the present and the future. We spoke of races, training , family and life.

Shortly after each of us mentioned that we needed to use a bathroom, one appeared!  While Maria was in the biffy I found an outlook over the River. Just beautiful. I stood there looking out to the river, over to the U of M, thinking that Troy was over in that direction. The sun was shining on my face, warming me up.  I felt at peace. My foot wasn’t getting any worse, I was able to block out the pain. I'm good at that.

Maria and I continued on. We were getting tired. As soon as I mentioned that I  now had to use the bathroom, Maria spotted one. We then moved along, toward bakery #5 Mel-O-Glaze. Lake Nokomis, our finish, was a short distance from the bakery.

We wondered about the Western States 100 mile race lottery. Were we selected? Neither of us run with our phones so we didn’t know. We would soon enough!

We trudged into Mel-O-Glaze and I was surprised that there were no other runners around. We each purchased a dog bone to bring home for Maria’s Tahoe and my Topaz.  They loved them!

We came to my car first after 18.5 miles of fun and happiness. Big hugs good bye with a good luck hug for the lottery!

I would have been so sad had I not been able to take part in this run. It is a blessing to be able to do something that I enjoy so very much. Running, friends, sunshine…I am blessed..