14ner, what?

This morning did not start well for me.  I couldn’t sleep last night which made me grumpy.  Josh had plans to go skiing so he had to take me to my car that was parked at the mall from when I carpooled to Boulder last night.  I couldn’t find my running capri’s which made me all flustered. Josh finally remembered that they were in my TNT bag next to my dresser.  I got all my stuff together and headed to pick up my car. When Josh and Ryan dropped me at my car it was frozen.  Josh was nice enough to help me scrap the ice off the windows.

I thought ok, I’m in the car, just get to the run and you’ll feel better. Well I go to pull out of the parking lot and my car starts making this horrible screeching sound.  It did this for about the first 5 minutes of my drive and then stopped. Maybe it was just the cold?  Regardless I think I need to take it in.

Anyway, I arrive to the run late, of course.  But luckily Aaron and Amanda was running late, so I just waited for them. I taped up my aching ankle and when they arrived we were off. They were having one of those mornings too.  Luckily it was an absolutely beautiful day outside so that helped my mood improve slightly. 

The first three miles were the hardest, they usually are for me. By mile six I was feeling good and by mile eight even better.  We headed back up to the parking lot where the rest of our team was waiting so that A&A could grab some water before we finished up. 

For the last part of the run, we had our coach Tina join us.  Once we hit 10 miles it was the longest run Aaron had ever done and he was doing so great.  At mile 12 I was still picking up my pace and feeling great when I turned around to head back to the starting point.  At mile 13.1 Amanda had officially done her longest run ever.  I could not believe how great I felt. I could have totally kept going.

Time: 2 hours 20 minutes    Distance: 14.27 miles    Avg. Pace: 9:48 min/mile

I am so proud of Aaron and Amanda. They have done so awesome! I know it was a great feeling for them run 14 miles.  I’m glad I was there to run it with them.  It’s so awesome having people to run with.  We’re going out for a celebratory dinner tonight when Josh gets home.

I am happy to report, now, 5 hours later, I am pain free.  My muscles are tired but I can bend and jump and walk up and down stairs.  This is actually the first double digit run I’ve done since getting injured last season without a patella strap or knee braces.  I was definitely nervous about doing it but I knew I had to otherwise I’d always depend on the strap. 

Approaching training differently has really made a difference in how my body is responding.  I am definitely eating better and enough which is key for my recovery. I’m cross-training and really listening to my body.  I stretch at least every 4-5 miles to make sure my knees don’t get mad.  I am really looking forward to Canyonlands in March and Nashville in April.

I’d like to thank some people whose donations I received this week because they are awesome and should be recognized:

Jess Cutler-She just finished the Disney 1/2 Marathon and was totally awesome. 
Kath-Donated for a second time this season.  I really appreciate your generousity
Tossie and Marilyn-Supported me last season and again this season.
Anderson’s-Lifelong family friends of the Van Kirk’s.  So sweet and generous.
Aunt Jean-I haven’t seen Aunt Jean in several years now, but she’s been so generous by supporting me and the cause.
Kim Greenlee-My former coworker and friend.  She’s the closet person to Super Woman I know.

Thank you so much!  We’re getting there!  Thanks to their donations, I have $190 to match in donations.  I know you want me to match more than that.  Make a donation, any size this week. Please!

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