A skipped run but a good night

Tuesdays are usually a pretty good day for me to get a good run on trails in. I start work at 6:00 am, so I get out of the clinic pretty early. Generally, I like to hit the trail right after work, but this week I was just too exhausted. The toll of waking up at 4:30 am and upping my mileage is catching up with me. I decided to head home to eat and found myself falling asleep on the couch. I was sore and just not really feeling it, so I decided to just skip my run.

I’ve always been a bit of an injury prone runner, so I try to listen to my body and stop before injury starts. When I’m tired or overworked, I don’t get too bent out of shape over skipping a run here or there. Although today made sense for a nice run in the mountains, it simply was not the right thing for my body. If I lack the motivation to get out the door, I try to take that as a sign that maybe I’m a little overtrained or that I need a rest day. Today was definitely one of those days.

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Elly and I had some much needed cuddle time.

Instead, Frank and I used our new projector to watch Planet Earth II. We don’t have a TV and have always walked movies on the computer. However, we thought it would be nice to get a projector and watch movies and shows on the wall. Turns out it works great! Even Elly found watching movies on the big screen to be quite an improvement.

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Elly is very interested in the animals of the jungles of Brazil.

Frank and I are pretty big nerds about our TV watching. We’re in the middle of The West by Ken Burns right now. It’s a series of documentaries about American colonization and immigration to the west. It’s a pretty slow show, but I’m always excited to hear about Utah and how Salt Lake City came to be. So far Brigham Young and his followers have only been mentioned once, but I expect that there will be a whole episode about the Mormon pioneers. Utah has a rather fascinating (and brutal) history.

After watching Netflix on our new projector, I did some photo editing and read a bit before heading to bed. I’ve been in the middle of a book about the reintroduction of wolves to Yellowstone National Park. It’s a fascinating story of management and biology and I feel like I’ve gotten a much better appreciation for the hard work the Department of the Interior has put into keeping our parks as pristine as possible. If you’re interested here is the link to the book. And yes, I am very obsessed with National Parks and the West.

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I took this shot last weekend just after a storm passed through the mountains.

Despite a skipped workout, I still had a good night. I have 8 miles on trail up for tomorrow and hopefully my legs will be feeling much more up for the job.

Do you ever skip workouts/runs because you are tired or overtrained? What shows and books are you into right now? Have you ever sat through a Ken Burns documentary? 

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2018 is the Year of Ultra!!

It has been a while… Almost 6 months actually.

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Since you last heard from me, a lot has happened. I ran the St. George Marathon with a 15 minute negative split and a 10 minute PR and I ran the Antelope Island 50K and came in 7th for women. It was a good year for racing, but not always a good year for running. I was hurt on and off and went through PT for both Piriformis Syndrome and my right ankle. It made me inconsistent and although I ran PRs and raced well, I certainly didn’t live up to my potential.

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I’m hoping that this year will be different. I have a lot of plans and I’m ready for some really really big things. Actually, one super big thing. After years of talking about getting my name in the Western States Lottery, my goal for 2018 is to actually do it. This means I have some serious training to do and a lot of mountains to run up. I am also still absolutely petrified of the distance. With a few other races before the big one, I am hoping that I’ll toe the line of the Never Summer 100K without too much fear.

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These days, I’ve become less of a road runner and more of a mountain runner. I spend my runs trying to get 2000+ feet of vertical gain and I do a lot of power hiking. I still sometimes do tempo runs and track workouts, but my goals have changed a lot. The track doesn’t get you ready for 13,000 feet of gain in a single race… only mountains can do that. Luckily for me, living in Salt Lake City, I have an abundance of mountains.

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I have 5 races on my calendar for 2018 and I’ll blog as I train for them.

Antelope Island 50K – March 24
Salt Lake City Marathon – April 21
Squaw Peak 50-miler – June 2
Never Summer 100K – July 28
St. George Marathon – Oct 6

Join me as I train, race, hike, and get myself ready to run 64.2 miles in one day. It’s going to be a journey for sure!

Also, Elly is doing great, too! She’s not quite as excited for my ultramarathons. It means less cuddle time.

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Do you have any big goals? What running goals scare you the most?

Sydney Goes to the Vet

I was considering writing a recap today about my race last week… or writing a post about how I signed up for the St. George Marathon in October. But that’s not the most important thing going on right now. Instead, I’m going tell you about my really really bad day and it is not at all running related.

Last night after work, Frank and I went over to the climbing gym. We met up with some friends for a night of top-roping, bouldering, and yoga. We were only there for about 2-3 hours and then we came home. As I was fixing myself dinner, I noticed that Sydney (my brown tabby cat) kept attacking Elly (my calico cat). Sydney was being so relentless that I eventually picked Elly up and carried her to get her away from Sydney’s constant attacks. It was really upsetting me and I was confused by the strange behavior.

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Sydney on the windowsill
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Elly in her usual sleeping position.

As I was watching Sydney, I noticed she was doing some weird stuff. She kept walking sideways, as if she were very drunk, and falling over. She couldn’t make the jump to the couch, which is typically very easy. She seemed dizzy and was having trouble even sitting up right. As you would assume, this was very upsetting. When I had seen her just several hours earlier, she was fine, so whatever this was, it came on fast.

All night long, Sydney paced. She kept walking over my back and waking me up. I barely slept at all. Obviously, the next morning she went straight to the vet. However, by the time I got her there, the symptoms had mostly cleared up. She still seemed a little agitated, but nothing like the night before.

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Very nervous at the vet’s office

The vet didn’t have a ton of answers, but did think that Sydney had a seizure. Likely, I came in on the aftermath of that seizure and that was what caused the drunken and agitated behavior. We are monitoring her for now, but if she continues having seizures, she’s going to have to have some extensive (and expensive) tests done.

Those of you with pets probably know how upsetting an experience like this can be. Cats are especially difficult because they really don’t let on that they are sick until they are very sick. Although Sydney is not nearly as friendly to me as Elly is (who follows me everywhere, including into the bathroom), she is still my furry child. Send Sydney some good vibes! I think she needs them.

The “C word” (cancer) was spoken to me as a potential explanation, which of course has me very bothered. Sydney is no spring chicken, so a seizure disorder is not the likely cause. I’m hoping that maybe her electrolytes were off and that we can avoid this again in the future.

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Post-vet nap time

Have you ever had a cat act like this? Honestly, any thoughts on what might be wrong would be greatly appreciated.