Wednesday, January 16, 2013

Take Motivation Wherever You Find It

As many of you know, this offseason has been a trying on for me (Coach Rich).  In October I was experiencing some shortness of breath on runs and some calf tightness.  After a car trip my left calf was swollen with pain in the calf and left hamstring.

A visit to the doctor led to an ultrasound at the hospital, which led to a CT scan of my lungs, which led to me being admitted to the hospital with a DVT and multiple diffuse pulmonary embolli (PEs).  In english, that means I had a clot in my leg (starting in the calf and progressing above the knee).  Parts of the clot had broken free and lodged in/around my lungs.  I was lucky.  A significant proportion of  PEs are found at autopsy.

I'm on medication (blood thinners) to prevent additional clotting while my body reabsorbs the existing clots.  I've been cleared for "whatever exercise I can tolerate."  Initially I could only run about 1/2 mile before the leg would swell and I would have to walk.  Finally I was able to work up to 1, 2 and then 3 miles.  At 3 miles I felt like I was actually working out again.  Then I caught a cold - 2 weeks of no workouts. (wow this is coming off as a poor me entry - and I assure you - it's not)

I traveled to Duluth for my son's hockey tournament.  Duluth and I have a running history.  I ran Grandma's Marathon 14 months after my first 5k.  I've run the 1/2 there multiple times.  It's always a great weekend and I highly recommend it.  Despite the cold forecast and the fact that I hadn't run in weeks, I packed the shoes and cold weather gear.  The first morning I awoke to this:

The Lake path was clear of snow/ice.  It was gorgeous!  No excuses!  I threw on my gear and headed out the door.  Yes, I only ran 2 miles - but I was back out there and that was the import thing.  Here's the lift bridge as seen from my turnaround.

 Whether it's a chilly sunrise over Lake Superior, a warm ocean breeze, or the quiet of running in the woods as snow falls - accept your motivation where you find it. AND GET OUT THERE!