I’m sick! Not super sick. Just kinda sick. Just sick enough that it’s interfering with my training and making me anxious. Eight days ago, last Monday my day started super awesome, got a good run and strength training in. By the end of the day I came home in tears because I had a sore throat. I attacked it with everything I could. Extra vitamins, fish oil, zinc lozenges, tea, juice, and as much time sleeping and in bed as I could get away with. I skipped the Torchlight 5k I was registered for. Surely I’d be healthy for Heart of the Lakes Triathlon (HOLT) in Annandale on Sunday.
HOLT was my first triathlon ever in 1997. I was 15. I’ve done it every every year since then. I’ve come back from Alaska for it. I’ve done it as a relay when I’ve been injured. One year I had been so sick I didn’t even bring my bike, but I did show up and do the swim.
As long as we’re taking a trip down memory lane, here’s a picture of me running at the super casual USA Track and Field summer league races. It was 1999 and I was a junior in highschool. Those were some good times. Ahhhh nostalgia…
Back to the story at hand. I woke up at 4:15am on Sunday to go to the race. Even if I couldn’t race hard, this was my last chance to iron out my race plan for Superior Man 1/2 Ironman Triathlon in another five weeks. I woke up with a cough 😦 Then when my dad and I arrived a small problem with my bike had turned into a major problem. It was basically unrideable. If I had been healthy I might have struggled through it, but I wasn’t going to make myself that miserable. So I did the swim and that’s it. Rather disappointing. And I’m still sick!
I blame the squirrel! Just because it’s more fun. Right now I need more fun. It’s going to keep me from tearing my hair out in anxiety for not being able to train for the most intimidating race I’ve ever done.
I tend to see a lot of urban wildlife when I run. The other week I saw a mother loon with her babies on her back just 20 feet off shore at Lake Calhoun. Nobody seemed to notice or care except me. Another day I couldn’t help but stop to play with these tiny toads.
Yet never have these creatures reached out to me until two weeks ago. I was running to Powderhorn Park to do an interval workout. It was a beautiful morning as I jogged by a low retaining wall with a thick hedge. Suddenly a squirrel launched straight out of the hedge. On to my hip. It clung there for a breath, then sprang backwards onto the sidewalk. We stared at each other. I think we were both in shock. As I warily continued warming up it occurred to me I hadn’t escaped unscathed. I got five little bloody dots from it’s momentary grip on me.
I ran back home and rubbed myself silly in iodine. Thank goodness for a well stocked first aid kit. My mom started it for me when I was in college, complete with condoms. My mom’s so thoughtful.
Now I’m sick. Not sick enough to stop working, just sick enough to scare me silly about my upcoming race. Although it couldn’t really be the squirrel, it was probably the six hour workout, staying up late with friends, continuing to workout, and then getting sunburned. That’s probably what did my immune system in. Pretty sure I don’t have some mutant squirrel disease. Although if I could become Super Squirrel Woman and run up trees that would be pretty cool and make up for my lack of triathlon training. What seems more likely is that I’ve contracted a squirrel’s sense of indecision and I’ll get run over by my own anxiety.
Next in the Superiorman storyline: Injury and inspiration