Embrace the Pain

Pre and Lindgren......TWO NORTHWEST KIDS WHO WERE GREAT AT EMBRACING PAIN AND USED IT TO FUEL GREATNESS! LINDGREN FROM SPOKANE AND PREFONTAINE FROM COOS BAY “Embrace the pain. Think about what that means. When you race YOU WILL HURT. If our sport was easy everyone would do it. When the pain gets really bad, push through the pain and you will reach a new pain threshold. You might have to stay tough and push through it for 1 minute or 2 minutes or 5 minutes but if you hold on and don’t give in YOU WILL BREAK THROUGH THE PAIN. .”-Forest Braden

I got an email from GU Track/XC Coach Pat Tyson that included this picture along with the quote from Forest Braden.  Words to live by.  Somedays……my mental toughness takes a break.  These words are a good reminder that things are hard before they are easy.  I’m struggling to get back to a better place when things weren’t so hard.  This is a reminder to accept the pain, work through it and eventually get to that better place. It goes along with the quote that is on my calendar for today:

The difference between the impossible and the possible lies in a person’s determination”

Amen to that!  Forever the optimist….even on my bad days…..I believe I will get there….and this will all be a distant memory.

14 Week Report

Spring Track Starts today.....Sunny weather and youthful energy.....

Admittedly, I’m a fair weather runner.  If the weather is inclement, and I am not training for anything, I often times choose an inside workout to avoid the elements.  That is unless it is the dead of winter and there is no sign of a good day in sight.  I’ve logged 20 miles in 7 days.  Nothing of huge quality except for maybe last Tuesday’s workout with the SDP boys.  Today I am nursing a tight hamstring…so I will probably stick to the bike during my midday workout.  Spring track starts this evening for my son’s grade school.  I will be helping with the coaching duties.   With all of the lousy weather we’ve had lately, I was somewhat dreading the first day of practice.  But the weather has been pleasant for my return to running.  It’s almost as if mother nature decided not to play nice until I returned to running.  You can all thank me later for that.  And I apologize for taking so long.  Today is supposed to be the nicest day of the year so far.  PERFECT.  I am looking forward to being surrounded by 60+ kids all working at different events wanting to be the best that they can be.  Sunny days and youthful optimism!  It is addictive.  Is there anything better?



Good to be back with good people.

The Bloomsday Course.  Of all of the days to pick to come back to run with the SDP Boys we had to be doing THIS workout.  I remember this workout from last year.  In this workout, we run the Bloomsday Course….with a twist…..every hill is repeated. Once we get to the top of the hill, we turn around, go back down and run it again.  So that makes for a…..hmmm……9 or 10 mile workout day???  My base for the week was supposed to be 5.  Needless to say…..I didn’t do the full workout.  I ran the first hill  and then took a shortcut and met them at the top of Doomsday Hill.  From there, we ran back to our cars at Coeur d’Alene park.  Afterwards we headed to the ELK, a quaint neighborhood bar, and met up with some of the Spokane Swifts for a post workout brew. Today.  My glutes hurt, my hammies hurt and my quads hurt…….AND-I-LOVE-IT!  I couldn’t be happier with how I feel.  The hip is still healing so to say I don’t feel any pain in the hip would be a bit of an exaggeration.  But compared to the old bone on bone running days….it’s not much different and I know that THIS pain will eventually go away.  The hardest part for me was starting the run from a standstill.  Once my hip got moving…..it felt fantastic.  This was my first real test.  All of the earlier runs that I went on were cautious and slow. I wasn’t running a super fast speed with these guys, but it was much faster than I’d been running.  Boom!  The official “Day 1” was a huge success!

SDP and the Swifts having a Post workout Beverage

13 Week Report – (3 MONTHS) Ready Or Not…..

Ready or Not....Here I come
Ready or Not...here I come....{are my bionics ready for this?}

Today is the big day! I am meeting up with the SDP Boys for my first “official” workout of the year. It’s been a long time coming.  As long as it seems though, I am right on track with my recovery timeline.  The hip is not ready to run  a full workout…but I’ll be able to warm up and cool down with them.  It will be a nice kick-off to my official start at getting back into running mode.  The weather is holding out as well.  Slightly overcast….getting sunnier.  Looking forward to a cold beer afterwards too.  I’m a little nervous.  Call me cautiously optimistic, but I plan to have a fun first workout with hopefully little pain.


March Showers

A record for rainfall in the month of March was set here in Spokane.  As I am typing this post I am looking out my window at the slow cold drizzle of rainfall.  I’m hoping that as March leaves us…..so will the rain.  Only 3 days until my big “official” debut with the SDP Boys.  It’s not going to be ground breaking or anything but it will be another reminder that I am on my way to complete recovery.  Today after a little Cross-Fit, my boy Tommy and I headed up to Whitworth to watch the GU Women and Men participate in a track meet.  The weather hadn’t gotten bad yet, overcast but not raining.  At least the rain held off until the meet was over.  It was great to see the men and women run.  I especially enjoyed watching the GU Pack of women dominate the 5000 meter run with all Zag runners lapping every other woman in the field except one.  It was a great performance.  Every year Zag coach Pat Tyson (roommate of Steve Prefontaine back in the day) brings in fresh and faster talent.  He is laying the groundwork for some dominant teams down the road.  These runners are setting the tone.  As a former runner and then a coach of this program (many years ago) I am enjoying the improvement and the success that the program is seeing.  Its a reminder of what can be done with hard work, hopeful determination and endless optimism.  I know I have a long way to go before I can be back to my complete self…..but I know….someday…..IT WILL HAPPEN.


12 Week Report

Saturday and Sunday were such nice days.  For the first time this spring, we had weather that was warm enough to don flip-flops and shorts.  So very nice.  I even got a nice run in …. 30 minutes.   And I felt….ok.  I know that parts of my body were overcompensating to protect the hip and I’ve been trying to be careful not to aggravate or overuse those overcompensating parts.  I felt myself protecting the hip while I was running.  On Sunday night, I was so sore, I wondered if I would ever be completely back?  My knee especially was really bothering me.

It didn’t occur to me that the knee issue could be related to something else until I started thinking about other things I did on Sunday.  It turns out that the real reason my knee hurt was because of wiffle ball.  One of the rites of spring in my neighborhood is playing wiffle ball.  Between my kids and my nieces and nephews who live 2 doors down, there are plenty of kids in the neighborhood for wiffle ball batting practice.  Add in their friends and a few more neighbors down the block and its a flash day-camp.  At the first hint of spring, the wiffle balls are broken out.  We play a very simple game…..kids spread themselves out among 3 backyards and vie for a chance to get up to bat.  All they have to do to become the batter is to field a ball (cleanly…no bobbling) while it is still rolling.  Add in the obstacles of roofs, porches and trees….and you have a fun game.  I am the designated pitcher.  The game is great because every kid regardless of age has a chance to get up to the coveted batting position.  The older kids test there power  hitting wiffle balls over the houses while the younger kids surprise the older ones by whacking line drives at their heads when they play too close.  As the pitcher, my knee was working overtime twisting and turning and also protecting the hip. We played 2 rounds of wiffle ball on Sunday.  No wonder it hurt.  It was a relief to realize that running was not the cause.

That is a pain I can accept…hip or not.  Because….it creates good memories, and some day, one of these young players will earn a golden glove and thank me for the early development of their catlike reflexes and clean-fielding technique.  I am not sure who enjoys it more….me or them.  I’ll always be a kid…..playing wiffle ball and running ’til I’m 80….I hope. {optimistic me}.

Jeremy Update

As many of you know I’ve been maintaining contact with my fellow hip brother Jeremy who had a hip replacement 2 weeks after I did.  If you want to get caught up on Jeremy, you can check out these posts:

Jeremy just sent me an update today.  He’s doing well and despite some IT Band tightness, he is venturing out into the world of normal activity more and more. Here is what he had to say…..

So my go date is only a week away, and as I said the
other day the tightness in my muscles and tendons around my hip was concerning me. Yes, I know my scar is only 63 days old.

So today it was 55 and sunny, and while tasting wine at a
waterfront restaurant I watched many folks running and riding bikes in the sun.

I was so jealous.

I said to myself enough is enough.  The stationary bike within the four stuffy walls of the gym was getting me down.

So in the dusk of the night I pumped up my tires and rode
away into freedom.  Just to ride my old
running route made me feel that ultimate freedom was coming soon.

Yes, I am icing a lot tonight and maybe a couple of
ipa’s, but overall the hip seems good to go.
I hope the morning is good for my hip as well.

I hope the hip is still progressing as well for you.  Your hip brother.  J.

You GO Jeremy!  This is fuel for the soul.  Speaking of ipa’s and beer in general.  There’s a rumor that hiprunner could be sponsored by a beer brewer.  How cool would that be?  Even if that falls through, maybe I’ll make up my own fictitious brewery and be sponsored by that.  I can imagine the first micro-brew off the line.  Hiprunner Ale!  Mmmmm Mmmmm.  Smooth and tasty….and good for what….errr…..”ale’s” you.




11 Week Report

After reporting my first run of the year last week, I was jazzed up.  So jazzed up in fact that the next day i figured a longer run was in order.  So out I went for 30 minutes.  Unfortunately, that run was probably 25 minutes too long.  The hip ached.  The legs were tight from the run the day before.  It was so disheartening.  This is what I do.  Give me an inch, I try to take a mile.  I backed off of the running.  So yesterday, I tried the treadmill again.  5 minutes.  Today….I tried it again…..10 minutes.  Felt great.  Lesson learned……..I’ll ease into it…and work my way up to 30 minutes…….it will happen.

On another note, I am now working in the clouds.  In this previous post, I wrote about some new technology that I was going to be working on during my downtime.  Well its implemented.  Woop Woop.  I now have my own private virtual cloud to play in.  Virtual Machines are the best thing since sliced bread!  I will admit during part of the setup, I could have used a run or two to get me through it……lots to learn.  Distractions like this have been very VERY helpful in getting me through this downtime.

Too weak to follow the rules…..

The treadmill called me....I was weak....I ran.....

And so it has happened.  I was working out at lunch today, sitting on my spin bike, minding my own business when all of the sudden, the treadmill started making eyes with me.  I couldn’t take it.  I ran today……not for long, but 2 and 1/2 weeks earlier than my recovery timeline had me scheduled to run.    I was weak.  The treadmill was like Kryptonite to my resolve.    As I was being pulled toward the treadmill, my justification for running was simple.   I figured if I am going to run with the SDP boys on April 3rd, I’d better get some kind of a base in.  Those boys are fast.  Even their warmups are fast.  I don’t plan to slow them down…..

It was only for 5 minutes at 8.0 mph pace.    And after my first 1/2 mile of the year,  the report from the hip as I write this is…..nothing.  The hip is reporting nothing out of the ordinary……..

I blame it all on the madness of March!  By the way my bracket is doing well 4-0 so far.  Good start!  Go Zags!!!