Wednesday, December 28, 2011

ACL at Four Months

Quick update:

I got booted out of rehab last week. I felt a little sad. I had been there for two to two and a half hours every Monday, Wednesday and Friday since the first week in September. What will I do with all that time? Okay, maybe I don't feel so sad after all.

My quad is at 88% and my hamstring at near 100%. I have good balance, good mobility, good flexibility (gosh, I thought I would never say I was flexible). I can ease back into running now, at four months (much sooner than the six to nine months I was originally told). Three to four weeks of building up on safe stuff (track, greenway, dirt roads), then slowly back onto trails.

I went outside and ran my first mile on Christmas Eve. The knee felt fine, but after not running for five months, it was a little tough on the rest of me. I did a 16 mile hike a couple of weeks ago (10 of it on dirt road) and the only thing that bothered me was the brace. I was wiped out afterwards, though! I did a 10 mile hike all on trail a couple of days ago and halfway through just wanted to curl up beside the trail and take a nap. I will try a 18 mile hike tomorrow and will run a little bit on the road section.

All in all, while the whole experience has not been a lot of fun, it has not been as bad as I imagined. All that time rehabbing, including three a days at home, plus working and coaching, kept me so busy and tired, that I haven't had the time to miss running or dwell too much on it.
I'm still amazed, though, that they took out part of my hamstring and repurposed it as a ligament to put my ACL back together. And it worked. Wow.

Saturday, December 17, 2011

2011 Year in Review: Time Out

Sometimes it takes a little down time to make one sit back and reflect. Or maybe just a 5 hour hike with a dog who is not a very good conversationalist....

As I started to think about about my "2011 Year in Review," I realized that I had not accomplished anything I set out to do at the end of 2010. Obviously, the freak frisbee accident took me out of the game in July, but even if it hadn't, I think I still wouldn't have accomplished anything. Why? I had done too much. I never had time to recover between races, I was always running tired and I never got any effective training in as a result. But it wasn't until I looked back at my blog that it really sunk in. Check out my races and runs in 2010 and 2011:

January: Tsali 50k
March: -100k at Nantahala Fria
April- Sweetwater 50k and 90 miles at Woods Ferry
May- Ennoree 40 miles
June- 70 miles at Black Mountain Monster
July- NMAR 100
August- 35 miles Laurel Valley
September- 55 miles Long Cane
October- 77 miles Foothills
November- Bartram 115 miles
December and January- IT band injury
February- Rattle my Heart 50K
March- 50 mile fun run
April- 40 miles on Bartam (the hard end)
May- Massanutten 100
June (2 weeks after MMT)- 87 miles Black Mountain Monster
and Chatooga 50k
July: divine intervention and forced rest...after a little surgery.

My goals, therefore, for 2012 look a little different:

1. get the knee back to 100%
2. Hike 12 hours of the 24 Hours of HOSTELity in January.
3. Maybe the Landsford Canal 24 hour in April.
4. 100 at Black Mountain Monster in June.
5. Finish the 900 miles of trails in the Smokies by the end of the year (running and hiking- only about 400 left to do).
6. Bartram Trail redo in early fall.

And that's it.