What is a prudent recovery after a 100 mile race? I took off five days since finishing Bear. My lower legs where they meet the ankles were swollen to the point where the elephant man would've been jealous. I'm guessing this was from my no holds barred approach to the descents last week. It took a solid three days for my ankle bone to appear again. The oddest and most painful thing is my wrist. I guess from holding and drinking from my handheld (right hand almost exclusively) I developed something like tendonitis. Suppose I'll need to learn to drink from my left hand, but I boringly digress.
Regardless, I was eager to run again but realized I needed to heal a bit. Not running at all after an intense long race is like a weekend of sex with no relationship afterward; just sort of this empty feeling with only intense memories. Well a Freudian simile (not a slip, since it was intended, reluctantly), but still accurate in its meaning. So, with the ebbing excitement this week, I've been awash in what to do next. I mean, why waste the level of fitness I'm at right now? I'm registered for the Antelope Island 100k on Nov 6th and intend on doing the Boulder 100 miler in two weeks.
I got out today after the five days of stressful and boring rest. Eleven miles, nearly the length of Mesa Trail and back. Saw Anton and some other guy bursting down off of Fern Trail onto Bear Canyon Trail where I was running up in what seemed like slow motion in contrast to their ebullient banter and pace. Tony was barely able to get out a "Hi Tim" as he passed by in a blur. I doubt he even heard my greeting.
The run itself was, well, amazing. I was a bit stiff and still sore in my climbing hip muscles and achy in general from the stagnant week but by the time I climbed up and out of Chautauqua, I was floating and excited to be out. I doubt any training run will seem difficult again after the Bear race. Everything loosened up and my endurance felt endless. It amazes me what the body is capable of and can recover from. That was a brutal 23 hours at Bear just six days ago but my body has all but forgotten what is so clear in my mind's eye. I love that the body is dumb (or is it simply loyal) and is so malleable under the mind's grip.