Tuesday, December 4, 2007

It's been too long...

Yes, yes...I know. I've neglected posts very badly now for nearly 2 weeks! So, I decided to get back in the saddle and renew my efforts here until the end. Truth is, I've been fighting a terrible cold for the last 10 days or so, so I've not run much either. I guess that made me feel like there wasn't much to say, but there are a few things to note, some news to share.

First, the saddest thing. McKenna Johnson - sweet McKenna - passed away a week ago tonight. Not only was she a personal inspiration for me, as I've been training for this race, but she was also the Team Hero for the Minnesota marathoners in Team-in-Training. I'll always remember how brave she was, standing there with her parents the night after Sean died and facing the return of her own cancer. I cannot say enough about Krista and Scott (her mom and dad) who were just so wonderful to us when we lost Sean - I HATE that they had to go through what we did, bringing it all right back again. And amazing Krista... here's what she posted on Sean's CaringBridge site the very night (actually those sleepless, numbing wee hours of the next day) that she lost her own little girl:


Have fun playing with McKenna in Heaven. You're her "big" brother now...taking over where Kalen was forced to leave off. Kale will take care of your friends here on earth, and you need to take care of his little sister in Heaven. Pretty fair tradeoff, don't ya' think?

Until we meet again...we love you....

The Johnson's

Of course this made me cry and cry. Kalen was in Sean's fifth grade classroom last year, and many of Sean's friends posted on McKenna's site after they learned of her passing. [side note: I remember kids that age sometimes being unconsciously and unconscionably cruel, but these children - friends of Sean and Kalen - continue to astound me with their grace and kindess -- amazing!] Anyway, Krista painted hot pink toe nail polish on McKenna's toes (as well as her own and those of her other daughter). I went out and bought some for myself and will be pink-toeing it all the way to the finish line in Austin.

Okay. So anyway, back to running (is that possible?) Today was recommitment to the Austin Marathon. I - in my own imitable way - forgot the paperwork at home and will fax it in tomorrow. Good thing, otherwise the training run (first run after illness) would have had to wait another day and I was starting to get antsy. So, thanks for understanding Karmen! Just a slow 4 mile run today and I felt it in my sinuses the whole way. Can't wait for the dregs of this horrible cold to leave me at last. Before tonight, the last time I had run was the Saturday after T-Giving (a 12-1/2 miler around the lakes in Minneapolis).

That was not the greatest run and I don't know if it was the excessive mileage, insufficient stretching/warm-up, or the early onset of the cold. Probably a combination of the three. My legs turned to lead about 1/3 of the way in in and I was never able to run it out. At the end, it was just fatigue, fatigue, fatigue. And then, the cold came (a doozy, I might add), thanks to the man from New York who brought me those special East Coast germs that I hadn't yet experienced. Hopefully, there will be no sinus infection as a result.

Finally, the exciting news of the two week layoff. I ran my first 5k! Me and 10,000 Minnesotans early on Thanksgiving morning, just an early strike against the many thousands of calories to be consumed later in the day! Thanks to Kirsten and Jake for facilitating this (5ks are apparently a regular thing for them), it was really pretty exciting. And it snowed! That was a LOT of fun.

I think that is about all. I'll try to write again and let you all know how post-cold recovery is going. I'm hoping that I'll be able to shake it off and slide back into the program. In the meantime - THINK PINK!

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