Run to the Hills

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Hey gang! I sincerely hope that everyone’s summer is going swimmingly. Mine, despite the minor setbacks related to not being allowed to run, has been fun so far. Even though I’m frustrated with the lack of running, I can definitely take solace in the fact that I do indeed still have my health. As such, I’m still embracing activity and getting out when I can to do interesting things. Such has been the case yet again for the past couple weekends, where I once again threw my hat in the ring as a volunteer to help out at local races. I’ll put up two separate posts for you to all digest, and this first one is about the 5 Peaks Trail Run that took place near Farrellton, Quebec. If you’re interested in seeing some pictures from the event, head on over to the folder I put up on Flickr. For fun, I also decided to bike back from the event for a little extra training, and since I haven’t put up a map in a while for all you keeners, you can check that out as well. When you’re done, come on back and read my short tale about the day. Oh yeah, and as a bonus, I have a pseudo update on my knee first.

Before I get on with the story, I’d like to just get one last thing off my chest about my current injury predicament, because a lot of people keep asking me about it. Sadly, I have nothing new to report on that front, other than I hate clinics that make mistakes with patient files. Well over 2 months ago, my MRI and X-Rays were sent to a surgeon for scheduling a consult. It’s the ‘last step’ before actual surgery. I was told I would likely be scheduled for late July, and likely wouldn’t hear anything for a while. Just to make sure, I called several times over the next couple months to the clinic to ask about the status, and if they’d heard anything. Each time I was assured it had all been faxed, and that it was normal to not hear back. However, in time, I finally got the actual contact information for the doctor (through a 3rd party I might add, not the clinic itself!).

Well, they were on vacation, so I had to wait a couple more weeks. When I finally got through, the person on the other end had absolutely no record of me or my file! What the FUCK? Yes, I just swore there, I make no apologies, as I put my entire life on hold waiting for this. Turns out the clinic (Nepean Sports Medicine clinic at the Sportsplex in case you’re wondering) didn’t fax it in, or if they had, it wasn’t received properly. What did that mean? Well, I’m back at the very bottom of the queue, and probably won’t see the surgeon until late October now!! I was unimpressed, but maintained composure. Oh yeah, and to get the ball rolling, I had to call the clinic back and insist they fax it over, then I had to personally verify the surgeons office had gotten it. I asked for a time estimate, and get this, well, the surgeon is on vacation again until August 18th. Damn!

I told them I was willing to take any cancellation they had at the drop of a hat, but was told that first the surgeon has to review my file to decide what my priority level is, and that they’d contact my doctor, not me, with information. Yeah, as if I’m having that! I’ll be calling the surgeon’s office personally every week until I hear something concrete. I am not impressed. Keep in mind that isn’t a surgery date either, just the consultation about surgery. I would then need to be scheduled for surgery after that, which will no doubt be well into winter. Sort of makes it hard to rehab and be ready for next year, doesn’t it? Yeah, it does.

I was so mad, that I decided to start running a little bit again. Nothing heavy, but just a trial of sorts. I had been told that part of my problem might heal on it’s own. Last week, I ran 3 days in a row. Just 20 minutes on a treadmill before workouts, but pretty good speed all the same. I’m happy to say it didn’t hurt afterwards, which is a relief. However, the odd bump that I’ve been showing off on my lower inner anterior knee is still big and bulbous, and seems to have gotten bigger after the weekend, so clearly all of my problems are not solved. Anybody up for some whisky and tequila charged surgery 😉 Kidding. I’m going to keep trying to do a bit of running as long as it’s not physically causing pain, as doctors have told me that might be okay. I’m still biking, as well as hiking and walking a lot, but I wish I could have all this behind me so I can focus on qualifying for Boston and doing another Ironman, not to mention get back into Adventure Racing. Woes me, right?

Okay, that’s off my chest, so I’ll talk about 5 Peaks now. Hmm, I thing I’ve ran out of steam a bit for that now. Ha ha. Jody actually decided to join me at this race and volunteer as well. It’s nice to have her volunteering as well. It was her 3rd volunteering stint with me this summer. She’s helped at all the same events as me apart from my adventure race volunteering. I was glad she came out, as it meant I could bring out my tri bike in the car, and be able to bike back home while she did a bit of exploring around Wakefield. The weather was pretty typical for this summer, with the threat of showers looming at any point, and it did indeed rain during the pre-race time.

So just what was my charge this time? Out on the course? Running a water station? Nope. I was given the task of being the race DJ, race emcee, and race announcer! Right up my alley, wouldn’t you say? Had I known, I would have brought my own iPod, but since I didn’t know in advance, I had to make do with whatever was on hand. In the end, I chose a pile of tunes related to walking, running and rain from Mike’s collection of Billboard Top 100s over the years. During the race, I called out people’s names as they crossed the line or went by to start their second lap in the case of the ‘Enduro’ athletes doing two laps of the 6km course. This was a trail run, so there were lots of roots, rocks, hills, and mud for all.

The terrain was apparently not that bad, but I did manage to catch glimpse of quite a few muddy but happy runners. A number of my friends made it out as well, and it was nice to do some mini catching up with people I haven’t seen much of this summer due to being sidelined. Jody asked me a funny question on the way home. She asked if I was happy she came out to dispel the Snuffleupagus comments from my racing friends. At one point, I had shared a story where one of my race acquaintances had tried to hook me up with a friend of hers when I had to tell her that would probably not fly with my girlfriend. Although most people knew I had a girlfriend, many had not met Jody, and this person for some reason had missed all the times Jody had been brought up in conversation. It was a funny moment. Apparently, Jody remembered that, and was trying to clear up any misunderstandings by making an appearance 🙂

After the race was all over, and Jody and I had taken a tour of Mike and Monique’s ‘off the grid’ home, it was time to pedal home. Although the skies threatened to rain on me, I stayed dry the whole way home, and thoroughly enjoyed the ride in the fresh air using a route I’d never been on. All told, it only took me about 2.5 hours to get home, which was about the right amount of time, and in the end, I pulled into the driveway a mere 30 seconds before Jody. She was quite surprised, as I loudly proclaimed that I had ‘won’. Hee hee.

That’s my little story about 5 Peaks, now time to work on the next story… stay cool kids.

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