Wednesday, May 23, 2012

Runner v. Chiropractor 2012

As a runner one learns to push through pain.  Minor aches and pains are a part of the training game and are to be largely ignored in order to log the miles and speed to produce fitness.

As a chiropractor I understand pain and weakness are a sign of dysfunction not to be ignored or injury may occur.

I guess I'm a runner. 

After an inexplicably poor performance in Montana I opted to start bidding on priceline for cheap flights to New Mexico for the next weekend instead of taking some down time. 

The resulting race led me to the answer I was seeking as to why my race in Montana went so poorly.  It did not lead to a good race.  A mile into the Jemez Mountain half marathon, which I won in 2010, there was a steep short paved downhill.  I noticed some sharpness deep in my gluts.  It was minor at the time but a mile later pain began occurring with every step and with full extension of my right leg.  I kept moving but lost touch immediately to the two leaders.  I held onto 3rd place through the major 1700ft climb through the mid point of the race.  But the subsequent downhill was extremely painful with both foot strike opening up my stride.  Jason quickly passed me on the downhill (then got lost giving me 3rd place) as I slowed to a pace nearly 10 minutes slower than the last time I ran the course. 

The good news is I found the dysfunction.  (Positive spin time).  Possibly without my ridiculous back to back of racing and traveling I would linger through the next two months with my right glut being wrecked but still mediocrely getting through races by over working my hamstrings and piriformis.  As it stands now I haven't run more than 10 minutes since Saturday.  But I'm building back and and cross training and hopefully to be running miles instead of minutes by this weekend. 

Treatment has been fun.  I've trained Kadie and Ken (Marathon Chiropractic's massage therapist) to do ART on me.  I've trained my dad to adjust.  Stem, extension exercises, and stretching are helping.  Overall I I feel more day-to-day than I feel out indefinitely which is good because I can only take so much of the exercise bike.

Mountain Cup
The Mountain Cup has once again come to a disappointing end.  Even with being the high man through 4 races it appears I'm destined for 4th place after two poor attempts at getting points in a 5th race.  I could get lucky if Matt and Jared have a couple of bad races but that's my only hope.  Rob is going to be the champion.  He's got an untouchable lead and even still is planning on doing a 6th.  I'll go ahead and congratulate him.

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Hell in Helena

Hells Hills proved to be quite heavenly for me but my next Mtn Cup stop in Helena would finally bring hells suffering.  The Don't Fence Me In 30k was the ultimate Mtn Cup showdown with me, Matt Byrne, Jared Scott, and Rob Krar all toeing the line in the same race for the first and only time during the series.  With all the available bonus points combined with my 3 other cup victories I had the opportunity to put the series victory away with a win. 
Garmin of race
Nearly 19 miles and ~4100ft of ascending and descending stood in the way.  Normally such a long race will be quite in the early going but at the gun for this one Matt Byrne was no where to be seen and Jared spurted out 20 meters ahead of everyone.  I thought I'd be patient and let Jared's fast pace catch up with him later so I hung back waiting for Matt to work his way through the field as we tackled the first 1000 ft climb up Mt ascension.

Mt Ascension to the left
At the top Jared and Rob were only about 30 seconds ahead of me and Matt had finally caught up.  "Now's the time to work with Matt and make the miles fly by" I thought.  Then Matt went running past me.  That's about when the race ended.  3 miles into a 19 mile race I was off the leaders and would only see them again on a long road stretch way in the distance. 

Mt Helena
 The course was amazing though.  Challenging climbs and descents all along single trek trails.  The views were often long range and I got to enjoy them a little bit.  As I climbed Mt Helena in 5th place (after a lazily long bathroom break) I was still moving well but not at all fast enough to be involved.  The race finished with a 1200 ft descent over 2 miles which served as the final straw to break this camels back.  I slowly made my way down the technical descent with my hip flexors barely providing the strength to get my next step in front of me.  A runner zoomed past me early in the descent and beat me to the finish line by 3 minutes.  It was painful.

I would have loved to have hiked the 2 miles back up Mt Helena to snap a few pictures to show of the views but I could barely walk the one block to my hotel.  Instead of partaking in natures intoxicating beauty I partook in Blackfoot River Brewery's intoxicating IPA with the Mtn Cup gang.  I continued to partake until I got good and college drunk.  By the end of the evening a drunk dial to Kadie ended with a deep conversation about how I want babies.  Eek.

My actual babies
La Sportiva Mountain Cup
I have to do a 6th race after that stinker.  So removing that race from my total through 4 races here's how it looks between Rob, Jared and I:
Ryan Woods - 83 point
Jared Scott - 82 points
Rob Krar - 82 points
Matt has only down 3 races but he has 62 through 3 so if he get his average on his fourth he'd be at:
Matt Byrne - 83.67
The whole series is amazingly close with so little left to go.  Obviously everyone could control their own destiny but it may come down to who wins the race with the most bonus points or who is willing to do 6 (or 7!?!) races.