AM: Catherine and I went down to Provo for the Gruesome Grizzly 8K. I'm sure I could learn some lessons from this morning, but right now I'd rather forget the whole thing.
I wasn't even sure if I should be running because of my knee, and by the time we arrived at the start I decided that I was going to run with Catherine instead of racing off the front. But when we started I couldn't resist, and I settled into third place as we left the parking lot.
I was fine up the first climb, but my stomach felt a little off. That's no surprise--it usually feels off when I push hard. I think that's because I almost never train for this kind of effort, so when it's time to go my stomach doesn't know what to do. Anyways, instead of pushing through I gave up mentally, and shortly after, on the Grizzly climb, I pretty much gave up physically.
I could have run that climb, but instead I walked most of it (almost all of it, in fact). Several runners caught me and passed me, but I decided to tuck into the group and hang on for the ride. At the top of the climb I passed a couple of runners on the flat and settled into a groove, but I just couldn't push. My head wasn't in the game, and my body responded accordingly. I'm the master of negative self-talk, and after a mile I had worked myself into quite a funk.
So of course, when my knee started acting up on the descent, I cracked. I don't regret that I walked in for the last 1.5 miles--there was no reason to push through and make my knee worse--but I do regret that I was happy to have an excuse to quit, and I'm disappointed with the way my race went up until that point.
It's interesting to listen to your thoughts as runners pass you continuously as you walk to the finish. Mine fell into three categories: jealousy ("look at that punk running--I wish I could still run"), guilt (almost every runner who passed me had something encouraging to say--I wish I could have responded by putting in an effort), and shame(I felt this urge to explain to everyone that I was walking because I was hurt because I was afraid people would think I just couldn't handle the course).
Anyways, some days are better than others. After the race, Catherine and I chatted with Jun for a while, and we both won prizes in the raffle. Plus, Catherine took third in her age group, extending her reign of terror (such as it is) to two weeks. So it wasn't all bad :)
PM: Catherine had to work in the afternoon, so I decided to hike up Grandeur Peak after lunch. (And that was a planned hike--not a planned run that turned into a hike when I couldn't cut it.) That trail is still a beast--over 3,00 feet of vertical in about two miles. My knee was fine on the way up, but it protested all the way down. In fact, I actually descended more slowly than I climbed. Needless to say, my knee and I are not on speaking terms right now.