I like the title and the feel of this song (Into the Arena). I would like to be announced at my next race with lots of smoke, fireworks and lasers all around as I emerge from the tunnel and head to the starting line. Delusions of grandeur for sure!
Pandora and especially Spotify have helped me find a ton of music I knew little or nothing about. Through it, I've discovered or rediscovered many bands, including UFO and former UFO and Scorpions guitarist Michael Schenker.
I've been running lately, but just enough as not to lose too much. I peaked at the end of September and, due to a great number of circumstances, can't get fully back into any sort of running routine. Baby, weather, laxk of daylight, my schedule, family schedule, all together I can't get any kind of regular thing going, but it's ok.
I did do a crazy run on Monday this week. I belong to a local Meetup group that runs regularly at a local Metropark and the one thing I've been able to do semi-regularly is go to the park on Saturday mornings and run with them. Much of the group is training for a marathon, so they actually have been running 18 - 22 miles and I join them for the middle 8 - 10. Anyhow, one member posted about a night run at the Pontiac Lake Rec Area. Since it was so warm (60 in December is tropical), I figured I could go.
Since it is an almost 10 mile trail with no light, I picked up a headlamp after work and got ready to go. I knew this was going to be a challenge, 'cause it was very long for an afterwork run, on a rough trail where it would be damp and dark. I could use an adventure. I met 3 others at the park and after a couple minutes we were off. Not more than a couple minutes into the run,, I had my first fall. I tripped on the edge of the road (not even yet to the trail). I fell "well" and kinda rolled into it. I wouldn't be my last fall...
We were going along pretty well for a while. Because it was dark, there was very little warning when obstacles like roots and rocks were coming. I had almost fallen at least a half dozen times coming up to the 3 mile mark when I came upon the rock garden. There were lots of wet, slippery rocks and I went down pretty hard. I hit below my left knee and my left palm particularly hard. Thankfully, there were people there to make sure I was OK. Being out in the woods, no where near a road, I would have been SOL if I was hurt badly, but I was alright.
If I would have had much of a choice, I would have been done running for the night at that point, but I wanted to finish and also didn't have much of a choice other that to go 3 miles back or 7 miles forward. We walked along (I limped for a bit) for a couple minutes, then I managed to run again. We probably went a bit slower than planned, but it was ok. They let me lead so I could keep the pace (and probably to "find" the obstacles first). It took about 2 hours total, but we made it. I felt a mix of accomplishment and pain.
My knee and hand were pretty bruised and once I got home, noticed that my knee was pretty skinned up. My upper legs were also sore for 3 days but I am now mostly recovered.
I have 2 races coming up: tomorrow at the Christmas Present 5k (free race by Running Gear) and next weekend for the Jingle Bell Run for Arthritis 5k (courtesy of Renewal by Andersen Detroit contest). I have no idea what to expect. While I always hold out hope for a magical PR to fall from the sky, I'd be happy to keep the first race around 24 minutes and hope that the second, flatter race is a little better. We shall see!
Into the Arena I go!