Post-race blues and a sick kid

“Somewhere between the bottom of the climb and the summit is the answer to the mystery why we climb.”

It has been over a year since I have last posted here. For anyone still listening, thank you. If it’s just me, then I need this.

Time has flown by, kids have grown and life keeps on pressing. Also, I have been happy – like really, truly happy. I tend to write when I am not feeling so rosy, when my heart is ripping at the seems, red and blue seeping together and bleeding all over this messy life. Today, I find myself drippy. I need an outlet and my shins are begging for a day off.

I ran my 2nd 50K this past Saturday, just 4 days ago and I now find myself sitting here with the post-ultramarathon blues. It’s a thing. Google it, if you don’t believe me. Back in October of 2014 I first goggled “post-marathon blues” when I was stuck in this funk for days that my typically positive self just could not shake. So anyway, today I find myself on the couch at 10:10am snuggling a sick scrawny little 7-year old who had to miss her school walk-a-thon today due to the flu. In a 7-year old’s world, this is a big deal. She has the blues, too. Poor girl cried and cried all morning, trying to convince herself and her Mama that she was well enough to do it. I took her temperature and let her try. A mere 30 minutes after school drop-off and my phone rang with the news that “Your kid has a fever and isn’t feeling well.” So that is how we landed back here at 10am.

I am never sitting at 10am, never really sitting any time during the days anymore. If I’m not playing with crazy 3-year olds at preschool then I’m running in the mountains or to school pick-ups or gymnastics classes or Trader Joe’s to stock up on food to keep this family moving. But not today. Today, I sit here with my heart like grape gum on the ground (to borrow words from Jewel).

The 50K is done, all the months of mental and physical preparation are through and I only finished 4th. 4th place is a total bummer – just 1 step from the podium. I try to remind myself that this was only my 2nd ultra (classified as any race over the marathon distance), but that hardly helps. Then I research the names of the top 3 female runners on Strava, Facebook and other social media stalking sites with the time I should be using to study. I discover these women are beasts, serious top-caliber athletes from all over the west coast. They run professionally, coach ultra runners and have competed and won top championship races. They are legit.

I place my hand back over a 7-year old protruding shoulder, rub it deeply and sigh. A sip of coffee and life will be okay. Time to plan the next training cycle..

 

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