Monday, May 6, 2013

Running lessons: Making lemonade out of lemons

Less than a week until race day and I feel miserable - not the usual "I'm in tapering hell" miserable, but the "coughing, hacking, I can barely breathe" miserable.  No, that's an exaggeration.  That's how I felt yesterday. Today, after a decent night's sleep, I finally feel I've turned the corner and will eventually recover from the flu that laid me low for most of the past week. It's a weird one too. It started with a slight tickle in my chest that turned to three days of coughing and chest congestion before moving into my nose and ears. Yuck.

Anyway, as I sat in a chair on the front porch yesterday, reading and wheezing, I told myself it was a good time to try turning lemons into lemonade - to remind myself that at least my legs would be fresh come race day. I have to admit I still toyed with the idea of going for a short run to see if I could clear the gunk from my lungs but a quick on-line search convinced me it wasn't a good idea. And news this morning that two young people collapsed (and one of them died) at the Toronto Scotiabank Marathon yesterday was a sobering reminder that it would have been foolhardy to run when my lungs and heart were already working overtime to clear this nasty bug.

It was hard not to run this past weekend. Spring has finally sprung and buds and blossoms are bursting everywhere you look. I made it off the porch yesterday just long enough to grab a few photos of the massive forsythia in front of our house. In the greyness of a Nova Scotia spring, forsythia bring a welcome splash of colour - which likely explains why they're so ubiquitous in this part of the world.

The only other outing I had this weekend was on my motorcycle. We stayed in the city Friday night because I felt too miserable to travel and Husband wanted to get some work done on the kitchen renovation Saturday morning. Around noon, it was so warm and lovely, I couldn't resist firing up my motorbike (I still need to pick a name for her) to go for a first short spin of the season.  My destination was Eastern Passage, a small community at the mouth of Halifax Harbour, where I stopped for a minute to grab a photo.

That's Devil's Island in the far distance. I've never visited it but, even from so far away, you can tell it's a fascinating place. Apparently, there were still people living there as recently as 2000 - a couple of Norwegian artists who hurriedly left under mysterious circumstances. I bet there's a story there.

In summary, it wasn't great week of running, but at least I'm on the mend and my legs will be fresh when I start the marathon on Sunday. And it was pleasant spending the past few days being gentle with myself, reading, taking pictures, exchanging messages with friends, and following updates from fellow runners tackling their first races of the season.  (On that note, hats off to the Blonde who successfully completed her first 50k trail race on Saturday! Way to go, girl!!) Fingers crossed that I feel well enough to go for an easy test run around the lake tomorrow night after work.

For the running geeks in the crowd, here are the stats for last week:

Total distance: 13k
Total # runs: 2
Longest run: 8k
Tempo run: 1 x 8k

P.S. The other fun thing I did last week was take my 12 year old niece to see "Legally Blonde" at Neptune Theatre. It was a terrific production and we both thoroughly enjoyed it. I've been humming tunes from the show ever since but this one in particular stuck in my head. Hilarious! Enjoy!


  1. Great pics, Janice - I love spring in Nova Scotia with the Forsythia, then the Rhodedendrum (?) and Azalea and Magnolia trees. Beautiful!!!

    As for your lemonade - good that you stayed away from the running (anything throat and below = stay off fee, anything above = good to go) and that you got some much needed rest this weekend. Another week of rest and relaxtion and you should fly through the marathon on Sunday!!!

    1. Thanks, Janet. I know what you mean about spring. Saw some magnolia trees that were totally gorgeous when I was riding my bike on Saturday.

      Hope you're right about m "flying" through the marathon. At the moment, it feels as if I'll be doing a slow shuffle but it would be great to PB and they say Fredericton's a good fast course. Fingers crossed.

  2. Good luck at your race next weekend! I'm in the same boat. Race next week and not really in fighting shape...not because I've been sick, but just from bad training. Like you said, at least your legs will be fresh!

    1. Thanks, Karla. Hope your race goes well too. Will look forward to reading a report.

  3. Thank you for the shout-out! ;)

    Your cold sounds exactly how mine started/progressed. I was super nervous the weekend before my race because I was still so stuffed up. My kleenex was a rainbow of colors! But every day after that, I felt a little bit better. I'll be thinking of you this week as you rest!

    1. Wow, and still you ran so well. Good for you!

      Thanks for thinking of me. I expect I'm going to need all the help I can get on the weekend.

      Hope your cold isn't worse again as a result of racing on the weekend. Congrats again on running your first 50k so strongly - despite all the challenges!