Photo from Mount Royal, Frisco, Colorado.

"That is happiness; to be disolved into something complete and great. When it comes to one, it comes as naturally as sleep." - Willa Cather

Sunday 28 November 2010

Best of Ultrarunning 2010

The year is coming to a close and, for the first time, I thought I'd hold a little awards ceremony. I am, of course, the only judge, so there is always that off chance I missed a thing or two. (By the way, is ultrarunning seriously one word? - DON'T question my qualifications for holding an awards ceremony, now.)

1. Unexpected/Inspiring performance

Ronda Sundermeier runs Javelina 100 miler in 19:53. Race report here.
2. Best picture

This is Joy from at mile 80 of her first 100 mile, Tahoe Rim Trail 100. Right before this picture, she admitted she said to her husband: "I'm quitting! You're such an asshole. Why won't you let me sleep?" She then went on to finish in style, refreshed from the nap and from putting her husband in his place.

Honorable mention -

The rock structure which kept Olga entertained every 7.5 miles at Texas' Palo Duro.

3. Best Performance I witnessed

Kenneth Munk runs 100 km in 6:57, setting a new Danish record at the Copenhagen Ultra.

4. Best new ultrarunner

The story goes something like this: Chris Scotch actually started running in 2009 (he had previously been a mountain biker) and by 2010, he was running ultras all over the country, including the Voyageur 50 mile, which we ran together. He then took 3rd overall at Voyageur Quest. And he runs to raise money for charity. See more at

5. Best graph

The effect of pregnancy on running pace by Katie:

(Yeah, yeah. I admit it: this one has very little to do with ultra running.)

6. Best blog post: Meghan Hicks looks inside herself and questions why she is a runner in "Indurare: the 2010 marathon des sables".

7. Best Interview

Geoff Roes, nearing 100 miles at Western States, poised for the win, is asked "How do you feel, man?" Pregnant, nearly eternal pause, still running, appears to be dying: "I feel great." I only wish I could find the video now.

8. Best Running Songs

Spring: Dance Floor by Apples in Stereo

Summer: Skisser för sommaren by Kent

Fall: Hang with Me by Robyn

9. Best legal doping form

Pocket Coffee - Italian chocolate with a liquid espresso center (thanks, Piccola Pinecone )

10. Pregnancy performer of the year
Stefanie Schocke runs a PR half marathon in 1:35 18 weeks pregnant, then runs PR marathon in 3:31 22 weeks pregnant. Thanks for showing us it's possible, Stefanie! (BTW, she is still pregnant and doing well. Though she's finally slowing down ever so slightly. It's just enough to make me believe she actually is pregnant.)

11. Best book idea - "Running Routes of the World" (oh, that was mine).

12. Longest race completed by person I know

May-Britt Hansen finishes Grand Union Canal Race. That's 145 miles, folks.

13. Best finish - Helen Lavin runs the last mile of Hellgate 100 km in 6:30 and takes first for the ladies.

It only required a little Red Bull and a bloody nose.

Nobody had better tell me that best finish was actually from December of 2009.

The next time you hear from me, I will bore you with pictures of Disney World, and maybe a half marathon race report.

Friday 26 November 2010

Near disaster

So the following story is explicit even for me. I apologize in advance; but not really.

So I have alluded to the fact that I suffer from obsessive-compulsive disorder. And this time it lead me to one frightening situation.

So the last few days I have been so afraid of finding blood the toilet paper after I wipe that I sit there for minutes analyzing every square of paper for even a hint of blood. I happen to work at a place with recycled paper and so every so often there would be a little speck of red. I then would have to wipe over and over again to convince myself I wasn't actually bleeding. (I'm pregnant, by the way, for those just joining in now). So this went on for a few days and then I got really sore. I joked that I would actually make myself bleed. Though I didn't think I would actually take it that far.

Anyway, last night I had a horrifying dream that I started bleeding (which I referred to in my comment to Olga on the previous post).

This morning, before SR left for a weekend shift at the ER, we had a little hanky panky and "ouch" might be an adequate description. I told SR I thought I had a yeast infection. Or maybe all the wiping (how many trees have I used, I wonder. Oh, wait; a lot of the paper was recycled.).

My parents watched The Lorax for the morning and I went to the local gym (Westwood). I went for a 40 lap swim (felt awesome) and ran a 5k in a comfortable 24 minutes on the treadmill. I went into the bathroom - and when I least expected it - blood on the toilet paper!

My heart rate shot up and I just kept repeating "no!" in my head and a little bit out loud. I got angry at the bloody paper and said in my head "But you don't understand. The pregnancy test was so positive. Finnbjørn is a survivor." I wanted to cry. But then again, there was something weird. I turned back into a doctor for a moment. The blood was a streak. And it hurt when I wiped. I spent about ten minutes and almost an entire roll of toilet paper localizing the area of open skin - and I found it. I was 95% convinced it was not uterine bleeding. But I was still in panic mode - and did the only logical thing - exercised more to calm myself down. Rowing machine - return to the bathroom - stair stepper - return to the bathroom - step class - return to the bathroom two times during the class. Somewhere in there the bleeding stopped and all of my vaginal secretions continued to look their familiar whitish color. Life was good. I thought I had been thankful on Thanksgiving, but I found myself more thankful than I've been in a long time when I realized all was still well in the uterus.

I got home and checked my underwear again and, as I turned around, I saw The Lorax standing there. "Ulækker", he said ("disgusting").

Wednesday 24 November 2010


We are on the train on the way to Kastrup Airport in Copenhagen - to fly into Chicago. Stefanie asked for an update since my expected period was yesterday. I took this picture this morning of the latest test, taken last night.

This test was more positive than any were in my last (unsuccessful) pregnancy. Some may ask why I needed to buy another test, but knowing the beta hcg was multiplying as expected was really reassuring.

SR and I immediately agreed on the name Finnbjørn, if it is a boy. Perhaps it's too early to think of names, but it sure is fun. We had The Lorax's name (Christian) picked out before he was even conceived. Finnbjørn is an old Scandinavian name meaning bear from the most northern part of Scandinavia. Seems like the name of a survivor. Perhaps you all think I'm joking. Anyway.

Here are the names we're considering for a girl: Pascale, Annika, Beate.

Oh, yeah, yeah, I know it's a bit early - but you are welcome chime in with your thoughts. The next time I write we'll be in the US. Happy Thanksgiving to the Americans :).

Sunday 21 November 2010

Signs and Symptoms

I started writing this a week ago and I am really, really glad I get to post it. I had wanted to post what had been going on a lot earlier, but...

1. The mind is quite good at producing symptoms when there is no disease/condition.
2. A lot of things can go wrong between fertilization and a positive pregnancy test.

But here is the chronicle of events:

1. Fri 22 Oct - 1st day of LMP
2. Sat 30th Oct - 6 hour race
3. Tues 9th of November - suspected day of ovulation based on vaginal secretions (sexy, I know)
4. Friday the 12th - fainted when grocery shopping. I bent down to look at cars with The Lorax and when I stood back up, all went black, and I fell to my knees. Thought this was quite odd, and suspected it was a sign of already expanding blood volume. Resting pulse was also increased approx 10 bpm.
5. Sat 13th of November - for the first time in spinning class, I achieved over 90% max pulse, without much effort, in the warm up. The instructor told me I should hold back while we were warming up, but I wasn't even starting to sweat. I previously have had trouble getting over 90% when I push the absolute hardest I can. Max pulse set at 185.
6. Sun 14th of November - unable to run marathon at relatively slow tempo due to nausea and fatigue. Take preg test (way early, I know) - negative. But I was already convinced.
7. Wed 17th of November - Had to cut tempo run short after 2.5 miles due to general feeling of unwellness (mostly unrelated to the man running 1 foot behind me trying to grab my mammary glands - unrelated breast tenderness begins same day :)). Take preg. test #2 - neg.
8. Thur and Fri - very uninspired runs & stair running (up the stairs at Rigshospital) with noticeable shortness of breath.
9. Fri night - after dehydration with running, zumba and a train ride, faintly positive pregnancy test, drink lots of water, negative test two hours later.
10. Sat. morning - faintly positive preg. test. Bear in mind, both of these faint positives came after 15 minutes.
11. Sun- spinning again. Instructor has to increase my max pulse (which I had again at 185) since I came up to 95% max during the warm up and he could see I looked like I wasn't even working. After the change, I couldn't come over 90% again - I tried to explain to him that I was pregnant and my max pulse wasn't higher, I just got close to my max pulse easier. He sort of bought it. (A lot of time people think because I'm young and have an accent that I am full of bs. And maybe I am.). Come home from spinning - positive pregnancy test and after about 6 minutes, it was quite clear.
12. FUTURE: This coming Tues: day of expected period.

Needless to say, I am extremely grateful to get to write this post. And I have to thank Piccola Pinecone for providing me with 5 Canadian $1 pregnancy tests. I then bought the 6th pregnancy test here in Denmark today for $8.

Here are pregnancy tests 2-6 (the results, I don't think, are easy to see, but trust me):

Take note of our beautiful Italian marble counter top (actually, it's Danish plastic). I know the lines are faint, but #3, #5 and #6 are the positives.

What did I learn?

One can fairly easily tell if one is pregnant before positive pregnancy tests if one is aware of their exercise norms. Resting pulse is also reliable. I have been told that one does not have sympomts before the test is positive, but this is far from true!

Running a 6 hour race as hard as possible did not adversely affect my fertility. And, honestly, I didn't think it would, otherwise I wouldn't have done it!

Finally, I am adjusting my goal for the half marathon in Florida in two weeks. I don't think I can run a PR with this shortness of breath. I'll just see how it goes, though I wouldn't be surprised if I could run it in under 1:40.

Running Song of the Day: Block After Block by Matt & Kim

Wednesday 17 November 2010

Let me get my hands on your mammary glands

The title is not something I have ever said to a woman.

I was at a course today in Copenhagen and wore my running clothing (which is always met with complete amazement by the other students) so I could run over lunch around "The Lakes". For those who don't live in Denmark, these are lakes in the center of the city right next to Rigshospital, where I spent my day. I had planned a 9 mile tempo run. I knew I would make it back late to the course (on diabetes, by the way), but who cares? It was also a habit of mine in med school to come to half of the classes. One needs time to run, right?

Anyway, warm up and then I began the tempo, feeling okay. Then, after a mile, I was all-out racing with a guy. Perhaps he was wondering why I was wearing a skin-tight green turtleneck while running (I also had to look somewhat normal at the course -wait... is a skin-tight green tutleneck normal under any circumstances? One of those items of clothing I have had for so long that I no longer question it's appropriateness). I don't know why he was less than 1 foot behind me for 2 miles, but he was. We were going at a nice 6:30 min per mile pace. After 2 miles of that, he gave up. And then, as I continued running, he yelled: "let me get my hands on your mammary glands!" Okay, so he didn't actually say that. This is Denmark, people. I just wanted to call the blog post that.

I continued, feeling okay, but about a half a mile later, I was overwhelmed with nausea. Everything inside of my body except my brain said - stop running fast! Or maybe it was ONLY my brain? The thing is, I am scared of messing something up if I am pregnant, so now if I get the slightest sense of "this does not feel right" I give up. But the whole point of intervals is they are supposed to, at least partially, not feel right, right? They are supposed to be hard. So, I will not be getting faster any time soon. I don't know what else to say. Is it a failure if I don't? Honestly, I don't think anyone reading this blog would think I was a failure if I took it easier on my hard runs for a little while.

Even SR suggested I not run the Rudersdal marathon on Sunday (and that's when I decided to switch to the 4:30 group). And when he mentioned to his dad that I did (and that I felt nauseated) there was great unrest in the family (ie. they think I am bat shit crazy). There is no evidence that hard training is bad when one is trying to get pregnant, or pregnant for that matter, but women and families everywhere will go on believing it nonetheless.

Thanks, Morrissey, for the title.

Sunday 14 November 2010

Rudersdal Social Marathon – I thought it would be easy

Rudersdal Social Marathon is clearly a favorite training run of the Danish ultra community. There are many reasons it is one of their darlings:

-1 large loop through gorgeous terrain, mostly on trails, with views of multiple lakes and the ocean

- awesome swag bag (t-shirt, water bottle, Coke, Twix, two energy bars, raisins, a personalized Buff and a finisher's medal)

- pacers who can keep pace

- good company

So, before I get to the run, I have to mention Bente Karlund Pedersen, who wrote the wonderul book I have referred to a few times, Exercise and Pregnancy (Motion og graviditet). She gave a little talk before the race, where she discussed why running is healthy,that our muscles are actually glands that positively affect our metabolism, heart, pancreas, liver and brain among other things. Anyway, I wasn't going to have her standing 10 feet from me and not go up and talk to her and at least thank her for her book. When I told her how much I liked her book on exercise in pregnancy, she got a huge smile on her face - hearkening back, it seemed, to a really good period in her life. (loose translation from Danish) "I loved writing that book. I wrote it while pregnant with my girl and it was such a joy. But then she indicated it wasn't a subject she would write about more -"the research in that area is just not very good. One has to be careful what one writes with poor quality research. [James] Clapp was a bit more of a cheerleader than I was." I told her she should have her book translated to English - and she said that women who spoke English could simply read Clapp, as if she didn't want to steal her friend, Clapp's market. Well, I planted the seed and now she can think about it. (But God, she hit the nail on the head with the bad research. I read so many poorly designed, poorly reported studies last week on fertility and exercise that my head was about to explode.)

On to the run.

There were 3 groups to choose between 4, 4.5 or 5 hours. Because it is a challenging route on trails and I just wanted a nice training run out of it, I ran with the 4.5 hour group. (Had SR been there, he certainly would have run with the 4 hour group, but due to lack of babysitting, he took his long training run yesterday and I took mine today (as usual, he was the gentleman. Thank you, SR - I love you!).

There is really no excitement in a social marathon race report. We all ran together for 4.5 hours. Then I pulled ahead for the win. Actually, I didn't pull ahead at all. The first 18 miles or so, I felt like we were running too slowly, but then, amazingly, I hit the wall. Even eating didn't help. What the hell? So like, it doesn't actually matter how fast I run? To be honest, I was feeling kind of crappy the whole run: nauseated and tired. I try not to let my mind get carried away with thoughts of pregnancy. Or use it as an excuse. I'm not even late for a period yet. But after 18 miles, it was all I could do to stay with the group. I actually I got a little behind with my new friend, Jørgen, among others, when we got caught up at a stop light. But I survived and made it back to the start with absolutely no desire to run another step. It was over and all I can say is maybe it was just an unenergetic day. Maybe it was the cold rain. Maybe I shouldn't have run 17 miles 3 days earlier. I don't know.

I met, in particular, two people I really enjoyed talking with, the above Jørgen and Rikke Skuldbøl. Their company, and that of others helped make it a fun experience. I am at the point I can express myself naturally in Danish and can understand what is being said - and it is SO nice. I like having friends and it is really hard to make friends unless you can communicate like a native. I'm not quite to the point of being able to interpret the finest of poetry. But maybe some day I will walk into the library and not be afraid of the literature and poetry section (as of now, I go straight for non-fiction). That was a bit of an aside - sorry.

I highly recommend Rudersdal Soocial Marathon - a beautiful route with good company, minus the stress of a race. It was a good day.

Ha - no songs. Did I just survive a marathon without an iPod?

Thursday 11 November 2010

I threw away our scale!

Actually, I didn't throw away our scale (don't worry, SR). It is a good start for the title of the blog post to be a lie. But what I mean is, I just don't use it anymore. A few months ago Amy made the comment that I should just throw my scale away. Being an obsessive-compulsive lover of numbers and previous sufferer of an eating disorder, this really scared me. But then I thought about it: my scale never helps me and, in fact, only hurts me:

1. My running times don't correlate to what I weigh
2. With a more intense training regimen, including weight lifting, I am going to gain muscle
3. I look and feel better now than I did two years ago, when I weighed 2 kilos less
4. Knowing that I am going to get up and weigh myself makes me do unhealthy things like skip dinner, eat less vegetables (because they weigh more) and drink less water.
5. I have had no trouble fitting into the same pants despite weighing more and that's a better indicator of how things are going than a scale
6. With all of this training (see below), I would seriously have to eat a tofu cow a day anyway to become overweight.
7. Living in energy deficit causes too many health problems - I don't want to lose my period again. Period. Well, I do want to lose it, actually, for nine months...

(BTW, I just read yesterday in the Danish medical journal Ugeskrift for læger, much to my dismay, that the bone density you lose while amenorrheic doesn't ...ever come back)

What a liberating feeling to not even think about the scale! Thanks, Amy.

In other news, I am having such fun designing the optimal training regimen. Take a look at this week:

Sun: Run 30k
Mon: Swim tempo: 35 laps, Cycle 1 hour 15 minutes
Tues: 2 mile warm up, 8 mile tempo run (7:06 min/mile), 1 mile limp home
Wed: 55 min. Body Pump (weight lifting for all major muscle groups to music), 45 min stair climb, 50 min. yoga
Thurs: 16.5 mile run divided into 10.5 miles, 2 hour break for work and lunch (with study friends including a guy who just identified a new retro virus in humans - which he thinks is the origin of some prostate cancer), 6 miles (Tried to do all 16.5 in 9 min/mile pace - which happened the first 14 miles, but then my stomach started bothering me and I got lazy)
---- the above has already happened-----
Fri: Swim intervals, step/core class
Sat: 1 hour spinning
Sun: 26 miles training run (Rudersdal social marathon) - I have decided to switch to the 4.5 hour group since it is on trails and this is just distance training, not a race. Plus I want to enjoy the pretty ruote.

Total running miles planned over 8 days: 26 + 16.5+ 10 + 18: 68.5 miles
What a jam-packed week. Is it too much? Will it work? Only time will tell.

Running songs of the day:

These are both great for running and are Danish, so a lot of you haven't heard them -

Maybellene i Hofteholder by Volbeat (it is in English, despite the title)
Selvmord på Dansegulvet by Thomas Holm

Tuesday 9 November 2010

Exercise and Fertility

I am writing this in response to Cynthia's comment:

"Not sure that hiring a coach is entirely consistent with your desire to get pregnant again."

Which is along the lines of what I was hoping someone would write. Because it is an important topic, often misunderstood and the above statement is, under most circumstances, not true.

Exercise/training does not decrease a woman's fertility. Loss of menstruation, however, obviously does. But these are two different things. Many elite athletes train beyond what they feed themselves. This is especially true for young elite athletes. They train hard, are thin, don't eat right and become amenorrheic. Think female athlete triad. BUT there is no evidence that training hard or for many hours negatively affects a woman's fertility, assuming she is still menstruating.

Bente Klarlund Pedersen, in her book "Motion og Graviditet" has an entire chapter on this subject in which she discusses and provides evidence that exercise does not negatively affect fertility. The one exception to this she cites is intense exercise on the day of implantation makes implantation less likely. Let's call this the exception that proves the rule. Beyond this, exercise also significantly decreases the chance of miscarriage. (Have to point out that I have a chance to meet Bente this coming Sunday at the Rudersdal Social Marathon. I'm actually hoping to ask her for permission to translate her book into English).

But since the above book is still only in Danish (and I had to return it to the library, so I don't have any citations), I will also refer to a large Norwegian study of almost 4000 women from the journal Human Reproduction from 2009 (Gudmondsdottir, et al).

They found that women who exercise greater than 60 minutes at a time had a decreased odds ratio of infertility compared to those who did not exercise. 0.6 adjusted OR (0.3-1.5 CI) - which was not significant, but at least did not show an increased odds compared to controls. Also those with a high level of perceived exertion did not have significantly significant increased odds of infertility.

However, there were two subgoups with slightly increased odds of infertility, those who exercise daily and those who exercise to the point of "exhaustion". The problem with these two groups is they are both likely to have more women with a lower than normal BMI and/or amenorrhea, which they did not control for. Interestingly, the women in these groups who had children, actually had MORE children than women who didn't exercise - so it points to a dichotomy: there is a group of normal, menstruating women who are fertile and a group of non- menstuating women who are not fertile.

Another study looked at eumenorrheic women and found no correlation between increased intensity of training or endurance training and abnormalities in levels of various reproductive hormones, though I can only read the abstract (Rogol, et al. 1992 Appl. Journal of Physiology).

There has not to this date been any evidence I am aware of that strenuous exercise in itself negatively affects fertility. It can sometimes cause irregular periods. But if you time things right, and are aware of when you ovulate (think fertility awareness method; FAM) you can have the same chance of getting pregnant as a woman with a clockwork cycle. The big problems happen when exercise combined with inadequate nutrition creates amenorrhea. And that is a different ball of wax - and not a ball you want to be stuck in - that is if you are interested in getting pregnant or in having bones that don't break easily.

I know I am an n of 1, but I got pregnant after trying for 2 months with The Lorax while running between 80 and 90 miles a week. I then got pregnant, with the subsequent miscarriage, while training for an Ironman after only 4 months of trying (and 1 month after a 50 mile race).

I personally have no evidence that strenuous exercise affects fertility and I have not seen any convincing evidence to back up the theory either. Though any opposition to this is welcome...

In other news, I have had two AWESOME days of training (and am still hoping for a pregnancy btw)

Monday: swim training record! - 35 laps in 41 minutes! Yes!
Tuesday (today): 8 mile tempo run in 56:48 (only 28 seconds slower than my fastest 8 mile tempo time ever last March) and with a negative split. The time from today is also nearly 6 minutes faster than my 8 mile tempo time from last November. Yipee!

Running Songs of the day:

I have mentioned this song before, but it is just so good for running fast, that I have to post the video:

"Come with me" by CEO

CEO Come With Me.
Uploaded by divisionparis. - Music videos, artist interviews, concerts and more.

And this is a good one for running or walknig or whatever
"Winter Weeds" by Liam Singer (not a bad last name for him)

Sunday 7 November 2010

Should I hire a coach?

It's been in the back of my mind for a while now. I know I would benefit from a structured training plan. And if I had a specific plan for every day, over an entire month, I think I would stick with it.

As many of you know, my husband, SR, has been my coach. But there were 3 simple problems with this: the training seemed very good for getting faster at 5ks to half marathons. But I personally want to improve at marathons and ultra marathons. 2. I want a coach who can train me up to a good Ironman and SR doesn't have experience with this. 3. I need a detailed plan, including what I should do on the days I'm not training as hard, and this takes a lot of time. SR is not going to spend the time to make this training plan if he doesn't think I will follow it (for the two above reasons).

So I was suddenly excited when I learned from May-Britt's blog that Ole Stougaard, who won the 6 hour race with over 80km, and former winner of the Norseman Ironman, was a coach. I mean, how often can find one find coaches who are both successful ultra runners and triathletes?

So I wrote to him, explaining what I was looking for. I should mention that the company, Multicoach, which he owns, has pretty expensive fees for coaching (about $150 per month). I very quickly received a very nice and informative email from him about what he would recommend, but he said he had too many athletes at the moment to take on more. He then recommended another guy he works with. Well, I googled this guy and could only find one race result from a short triathlon and already knew I needed to say no. I really don't want to pay for a coach who doesn't have experience with ultras and ironmans(men?). Because then I would doubt the training plan and not follow it. But I'll write back to Ole and get more info on the other coach.

So I googled training plans for ultras and an Ironman and really couldn't find anything helpful. But then I ran across Lisa Smith Batchen as a coach, who seemed absolutely perfect. I was sold, until I saw that she charges $325 per month(!) if you want tri training included ($275 for just ultra training). That would be like renting an extra apartment. Wow. As step-daughter, Natali, might say "it's not like it's rocket surgery." Or is it?

As of now, my solution is to take an Ironman training plan from the internet, but make the long training runs longer. I will probably make other modifications so I don't peak for a specific race. But another part of me is averse to following any plan at all and simply doing what I want to do and what I can make time for on that particular day. Anyway, I'm open to suggestions.

Little update

I'm feeling much better after my total ultra breakdown. I got scared when, the day after I wrote the last post, I had such frequent palpitations that I had to stop on my bike ride multiple times to wait for my heart to beat normally again. It occurred to me that my potassium was low, so I started eating bananas. I haven't had any palpitations since and, now in spinning/pulse training, I have no trouble getting my pulse to rise and fall. I have to wonder if the potassium helped. It just seems to weird, though, that the solution was so simple.

30k run

In the week after the race, I ran a total of 2 miles, so today I was ready for something big. I had considered the local 10k race, but opted for a nice, easy 30k instead. It's kind of rare I stop and take pictures, but today I did - and what a beautiful fall day!

After 7.5 miles, I arrive in Appenæs.

And finally get to enjoy the bayside trails. It's difficult to tell, but this is salt water connected to the nearby ocean.

Here I am on my way home, along Slagelsevej in Næstved. (This is also where I run my intervals.)

12:24 pm - and look at the length of the shadows (I subsequently spent way too long trying to figure out when exactly the sun's zenith was and had to give up). This is the forest in our backyard. I'm almost home.

Time to watch the New York City Marathon. I'm rooting for Christelle Daunay of France.

Running songs of the day:

Can you tell by Ra Ra Riot (thanks, Steve Q, for introducing me to this band)

Drain You by Horse Feathers (beautiful remake of the Nirvana song)

Wednesday 3 November 2010

Total ultra breakdown

It couldn't sound any worse than that, could it?

But seriously now, running 64 km in 6 hours can't really be healthy, can it? Perhaps it was when I was sitting in the sandbox with my doctor (there are also positives to having my doctor be my neighbor) that I realized how absolutely insane the race sounded. "You did what? SR did it, too?" He was definitely more shocked by the fact that SR also ran, as SR is generally considered the "normal" one between the two of us.

But SR hasn't looked back. He went running yesterday - pain free.

I, on the other hand, went through the following:

(PUD = post ultra day)

- PUD 1 (5:45 am) - wake up early with insatiable desire to do math equations - begin to feel nauseated if not constantly doing math; distract myself by writing blog post
- PUD 1 (10 am) - ask SR to pull over the car so I can vomit on the side of the road (meanwhile, I pick out fancy stones for the Lorax without vomit on)
- PUD 1 (2 pm) - invited over to doctor neighbor's house (by his wife), but can't calm down. Must work and/or do something at every moment. Agonizing sense of urgency lasts all day, yet unable to accomplish anything. Refuse sitting down for hot chocolate as I have "things" I need to do.
-PUD 1 - (8pm) SR puts on a movie and I start crying, fearing it won't be good, then realize I can't pay attention enough to understand what is being said anyway.
- PUD 2 (7am) - wake up after 9 hours of sleep, but, again, math equations - they won't stop.
- PUD 2 - acne breakout all over my face (I am not normally an acne sufferer), small bleeding sores develop around my lips
-PUD 3 - return to "relative" normalcy

Not that long ago, I wrote a post about how ultras were not necessarily unhealthy. But let's be honest, does anyone run ultras to do the body good? Or am I the only one who feels like a wacked out woman on Prednisone after running an ultra (sidenote: is wacked really spelled "whacked"? - why do I find that so funny? whhhhhacked)? Perhaps it's because I want to get pregnant that I am extra in-tune with what is happening in my body. Or maybe it doesn't take much to tip me over the edge...

No, no, I haven't been running yet. So no songs.