Monday, May 16, 2011

Coach Wendy!

That's right.  I'm coaching someone, a runner, for the first time.  It's been in the works for quite some time, but we're just now outing it.  Now, I use the word "coach" lightly.  I like to think of it more as helping.  Of course I don't have any major credentials.  But they may not be needed in this case.

The lucky runner is Sara Jane Baldwin (you should check out her blog, Fast Twitch Follies).  Sara is a VERY talented runner.  She's actually an excellent sprinter, but over the years has fallen in love with distance running.  While she has run 4 or 5 marathons, she's never really trained and, more importantly, she's never really raced them.  If you read her blog, you'll see that Sara is not a fan of pushing out of her comfort zone.  Of course, to race well, that has to be done.  She's ready to do it.  We just have to train her slow twitches to be as good as her fast twitches.

I think that's why she contacted me to help her--I have an ability (often to my detriment) to push through a lot of pain and keep going.  Sara has this ability too, of course...she has just never done it.  So, enter me.  Sara Jane and I have actually never physically met, but I've known her for a couple of years via Hal Higdon's v-boards and on Facebook.  She is a fantastic, intelligent, and extremely witty woman.  See why we get along so well?

I only send her her schedule one week at a time.  That way she doesn't get overwhelmed, and I guess it promotes a level of anticipation.  She is running Grandma's in her hometown of Duluth, MN, and I am helping her with her last few weeks of training for that.  But then it's on to the real training...which will be for NYC in November.  I don't have a certain time goal for her, and she doesn't have one either...she's just going to RACE a marathon for the first time.  Oh, and run one with some real marathon training under her belt.

Onto other things--no running today.  My right hip flexor/adductor thing really bothered me while I slept last night.  I had to get up with Rowan once, and just walking from my bed to his got it aggravated.  In total freak out mode, I called Dr. Weidenbener's office and have an appointment for Wednesday.  After I made that, the pain started getting better (naturally).  Now I hardly notice it.  I think it was just a tweak.  My calves and hamstrings are very tight from DWD (I can't believe my quads aren't).  Wes and Tim are very sore as well.  I don't know about dad and Quigley.

I'm not running tomorrow, either.  I probably wouldn't anyway, but I have to go to Washington, D.C.  It's a whirlwind trip--flight from Indy at 6:45 in the morning, get back in Indy tomorrow night at 11:45.  Yuck.  Long day.'s an incredible opportunity for me, along with another T32 fellow (Esther), to get to attend a National Institute for Nursing Research meeting.  NINR is sort of, well, no, actually it IS, the hub of nursing research in the US.  This is where all research funding decisions are made.  So we will be there all day, with Dean Broome (dean of IU School of Nursing).  I think there will be a LOT of walking, so it won't be absolute rest, but at least no running.

I might do a very short run on Wednesday, but it's clear I'm not totally recovered from Eugene yet.  The hip flexor acting up is just a sign of that, as is my overall exhaustion.  I have to also realize and acknowledge that I just completed a training cycle, as well as a marathon, with perihepatitis and severe diaphragm irritation related to a massive infection in my abdominal cavity.  I was not just in pain..I was really, really sick.  No energy.  Night sweats.  Weight loss.  I'm recovering from that, too.  Oh, and I had surgery a week ago.  So it's no wonder my runs feel blah, my legs feel dead, and I just feel slow in general. 

Now, Run with the Foxes is this weekend.  It's a trail half.  I've won it before.  I love the course and want to run it.  But I have to swear to myself (and all of you) that I will not race it if my hip is still bothering me at ALL.  I could always run with my dad or my friend Kathy.  Or run the 10K or 10 miler instead.  I don't know.  I just love that race and getting to see all my trail runner friends.  But I'll have to put my competitive spirit somewhat to the side--and that is hard to do.

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