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Training Log Archive: Swampfox

In the 7 days ending Jun 30:

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Sunday Jun 30 #


No rain Thursday, Friday, or Saturday. However, the month closed out with rain today (twice for me, where I was), and June this year goes down as unusually rainy, with rain on 26 of 30 days (at least) and snow on 2 days.

O' at East Pelican on an old Daze course, followed by mapping at Diamond Bay.

Friday Jun 28 #


O' at Diamond Bay, easy pace.

Thursday Jun 27 #


Woo-hoo! 80F today--unbelievable!


Not easy to see--in center of photo, a turkey hen (dark) and a poult (tiny white dot):

Easier to see--moose antlers, now back home:


Basically repeated Sunday's test at Granite Planite, with the difference being that today I went as hard as I could, with extra inspiration from a full fledged summer day. 2 happinesses: my knee was 100% fine, and I ran the course 46 seconds faster than my previous best time, and it's a good check that my current terrain fitness is not so bad.

And: no rain anywhere in sight today, breaking the streak of 24 straight days of rain. Felt dry out, almost like a drought could be setting in.

Wednesday Jun 26 #


While I was out doing something to my knee on an O' course a week and a half ago, that's not all I did. Several times while training on course this year with one or more "multi" controls (controls used more than once on a course), I have carelessly gone out of the control on the wrong leg. Therefore I've been designing nearly all my practice courses with loops through one or more controls to try to get that trained out of my system. It would be easy to think that since I designed the courses I was familiar enough with them to be sloppy at these controls in a way that I wouldn't be in a race on a course new to me, but it's not a good way to think. If you are making mistakes in training, there is every reason to think those mistakes will be repeated in races.

So on one of the multi controls I had on the above mentioned courses, I went in and out the first time (correctly!) and noticed nothing other than the control feature. The second time through, however, I noticed something else, just a short distance from the control. No idea how I missed it the first time through, but I did:

Today's task was to make a recovery and claim the find. The regulations vary from state to state, but what it meant here today was meeting a game warden (and his technician) out in the forest and taking him to the site so it could be examined and determined whether the death was fair or foul (poached.) His determination was that it looked like death from natural causes, so the antlers were mine to take.

Maybe it was not something for the squeamish. There were still hundreds (at least) of maggots crawling around on the carcass and an odor that can't really be described. But a nice find at any rate.

After that, headed out to do some mapping, during which I saw and killed one mosquito. I was expecting many. Then I ran at Happy Jack, which is where the "many" apparently had congregated. Standing still for even a few seconds was not a good idea. Even running, I was swatting mosquitoes the whole time.

Definitely summer.

Oh, yeah: as I was meeting up with the game warden, a thunderstorm passed through. Rain 25 out of 26 days now. Still 4 days left this month we could potentially stay dry!

Tuesday Jun 25 #


With rain today, June has now featured rain on 24 out of 25 days. Lookout Seattle!

Separately, mosquitoes have been very scarce this year, leaving people to hope that maybe this would be an especially light mosquito season. Up until today. Things are now becoming...much more normal. While biking by the river today, I had gangs of mosquitoes successfully launching numerous kamikaze attacks, with happy mosquitoes festooning my legs. Pedaling harder just seemed to attract more of the leeches of the winds.


I noted that 2 Sundays ago my knee wasn't feeling so great after orienteering that day, and realized during the evening it was different from anything I could remember before, with some sense of it being swollen and/or stiff. That had me concerned. I did some research to try to figure out what was going on. I considered bursitis, but the location and symptoms made that seem less likely to me. What I decided was most likely was a tear in the lateral meniscus, but not being a human MRI, I couldn't be sure. Some more reading made me think it was okay to continue running as long as I took it easy (which I was going to do anyway), and that there was no point in heading to a doctor so early. The main things guiding me was that I never really had any pain--let alone bad pain; it was more mild discomfort and some sense of swelling in the evening--and that my knee was stable and never felt like it was going to lock up or anything like that. Plus, while I was actually running, it felt 99.9% fine and probably the only reason I wouldn't have gone with 100% was just because I knew something was going on.

By Friday-Saturday, I was more comfortable with whatever was going on, less worried that it might be something seriously wrong that I was making worse, and it seemed like things were maybe a little better. So on Sunday I decided to risk giving it a test by running at speed through terrain, and seeing how that went. My plan was to run at the easier end of the race pace band, and that if at any point I felt pain or something else of concern, I would stop at once. The choice of a test site was easy: the Green course at Granite Planite was still streamered, and would take less than 30 minutes--which was the longest I wanted to go at a non-easy pace.

I made sure to warm up thoroughly.

The course starts out with a quick downhill stretch to the first control, and partly on a jeep trail, which I figured would be the greatest stress of anywhere on the course (fast running on a steepish downhill on a hard surface), and I think I probably held back a little on that part just out of nervousness. But once I started climbing up the side out of #1 and got into some of the sage, it was more about trying to pick a good line to #2 and trying to ht the control dead on, and that was the last I thought of the knee.

I kept up good speed along the way, but the effort felt comfortable even so. As compared to when we ran the course during our training weekend in early June, the leaves were now out, and in many places grass was lush and now much taller. Plus there were cows!

When I hit the Finish and hit my watch, I was happy with how the test went. There wasn't any hint of any problem with the knee: it was perfectly stable, with no pain or discomfort whatsoever. I did a good warm down and there was no sign of any swelling or discomfort during that, so also good.

What was surprising was that for all that, my time was only one second off the best time I had run before. When I got home and was checking times, I saw I was wrong: my time wasn't one second slower than my best, as I had thought. Actually it was better than my previous best, and by 19 seconds. Completely unexpected.

In the evening I could once again feel like there was some small amount of swelling, but if anything it was less than what I had been feeling earlier in the week.

The next day (Monday) the knee felt fine in the morning and the rest of the day as well, which was enough to satisfy me things were heading the right direction.

Tonight I ran trails after the rains and pushed the pace up a little bit, and once again it felt good.

This is of course a big relief, and whatever it is (not quite ready to say "was") going on, I'm basically not worried anymore, though I will continue to monitor things.

Completely unrelated: I aimed my run at taking a look at the snow field off the Headquarters Trail, and it's still hanging in there. I don't know if it will make it to July, but it might.

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