A Little Fish in a Big Pond

I think for a lot of people the idea of being a little fish in a big pond or a big fish in a little pond takes on various meanings. This time and for me, I look at is as meaning I am surrounded by lots of other fish, all more impressive than I feel at times. Before you roll your eyes and close this entry, this is NOT a post where I whine, it is instead a post where I brag about my friends and how they inspire me to want to be a better version of myself.

You see, several of my friends went down to Mohican State Park to attempt 50 or 100 mile events. Gale was going for a PR at her 50 mile distance and is in the middle of radiation treatments for breast cancer. Can you even believe it? I’ve chatted with her over the past few months, jealous and impressed with all the miles and time she’s put in on the trails. She made the decision to drop a few miles past the 50K mark, and was on track the whole time for an 18 hour finish. I’m so very proud of her and glad to call her a friend. She always knows how to convince me to keep going or to try again. Here she is with her pacer Mark and his “ultra dog” Rocky.

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My other friends Zach, Pam, and Kali were all going for the 100 mile glory. Zach made it beyond the 50 mile mark before having to make the choice to go home (after 22 hours of running!) Zach is one of those people who can always make you laugh. He has 3 or is it 4 now? Little girls and is probably one of the best and coolest Dads I know. Also, he typically runs without shoes. TRAIL RUNNING WITHOUT SHOES folks! And is known for his killer bunny slippers when he does opt for shoes. Check out this sweet on course picture and let’s all be proud of his efforts.

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Pam and Kali BOTH finished the 100 miles, Kali taking 3rd woman! I type those words and can’t believe I am friends with such amazing ladies.

Pam and I both ran the Moebius 50K race last August. We both had been struggling with ITB issues. She dropped. At the time I couldn’t understand why she didn’t push through and simply walk. 10 months later, she’s finishing a 100 mile race and I’m STILL RECOVERING from the damage I did when I didn’t drop. Focusing on her achievements a moment more. Here are some great pictures from the weekend. A before picture with Katrina (another friend) who was her crew and an after picture with her 100 mile belt buckle. She’s such a funny woman with a good heart. She does 911 operation and posts the funniest conversations at times. She also does fitness instruction.

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Kali and I have run together for many many years. I remember “beating” her at Twilight Trail one year. She was having knee problems I think? I continued to push my training in not so smart ways….and now she’s taking 3rd female overall and I’m sitting at home unable to run this weekend. And it makes me feel like a small fish in a big pond full of brighter, shinier, better swimming fish.

But I’m not as upset as it seems. I look at these fish and I think to myself, that CAN be me. I reflect on the changes I’ve gone through the past few months. How I’m FINALLY doing weight training and in 10 weeks it’s paying off. How I wasn’t able to run AT ALL for a while. How I wasn’t able to sleep or sit or stand and now I can and up to last week it was pain free. Sure, Sunday was rough, Sunday hurt. It was on Sunday I couldn’t walk down the steps without my left leg shaking. For the last week I thought my ITB was tight and have been foam rolling and complaining about my tight calf. Later in the day I realized everything  hurt no matter what position I was in and the idea of having piriformis damage again scared me! Sunday taught me it’s OK to let go of one goal and set your sights on the next. If you can’t tell what I’m getting at…I quit stopped the run streak Sunday.

There will be another “official” run streak in the fall, I can even make my own! (GASP). There will also be events at FitBloggin in two weeks. There will be the rest of my life. I’m not going to suffer through 20 more days of 18 minute 1 milers while praying I don’t rip a hamstring again. WHY should I? I’m going to take a few days off and keep with my weight training in the gym. It’s working, but it won’t be an overnight cure. Two months until I can run the Moebius trail again and I want to prove to myself I can train smart and I can train safe. Then I want to go to Michigan for Run Woodstock and I want to go to the beach with my friends for the Rock N Roll 1/2. So many things I don’t want to risk losing for 2013.

This time next year, hopefully I’ll be writing about my own Mohican Adventure. It isn’t so bad being a small fish in a big pond, there’s lots of other fish to play with and lots of places to explore. Besides, I’m a young fish, my journey probably isn’t even half way over yet, and I need to just keep swimming (although maybe not running for a few days).

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