If we really want to get rid of suffering, completely and totally, then clinging has to go. The spiritual path is never one of achievement; it is always one of letting go. The more we let go, the more there is empty and open space for us to see reality. Because what we let go of is no longer there, there is the possibility of just moving without clinging to the results of the movement. As long as we cling to the results of what we do, as long as we cling to the results of what we think, we are bound, we are hemmed in. Meditating on No-Self: A Dhamma Talk (Edited for Bodhi Leaves), by Sister Khema(1994)

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Moving forward without dogs, just cars

I woke at 4:00 a.m. with high blood sugar, took 7 units.  I woke at 7:35 when the alarm went off and high blood sugar still, 7 more units.  Went back to bed, woke again at 9:15 and checked the weather.  -16 C, no wind, lots of sunshine.  Seemed like a good idea to run 40km.

I wore the same thing as yesterday. I wondered whether to wear the fluid belt that has 4 8 oz bottles but I decided if I did it would freeze and when I wanted water most it wouldn't be available and I might have a mental melt down.  So I didn't wear it.  I did pack in a Jansport fanny pack, money for water and possibly a taxi, insulin with needle, glucose tester and needles and 3 GUs.  Off you go boy, see what you can do!

The first part of the run was acclimation, required 5 miles out Permohy Prospekt and then a right turn on to Adkamestechka.  I ended up spending almost this entire run on the roads, not the sidewalks running with the traffic.  Being American I was always taught to run against the traffic.  One of the teachers at our school asked me why I run against the traffic in the office and I said that is how we are taught, interestingly she said that in Ukraine your taught to walk/run with the traffic.  So I tried it.

This is my first observation about this run.  Running with the traffic I got a lot more room from cars, buses, mashrutkas, trucks than I ever do when I run against the traffic.  Initially I was really nervous about it but then I saw that I was getting real space from drivers instead of what I usually deal with doing it the other way.  So, 4 hours of running with the traffic.

The run began with 232 Blood Sugar.  I stopped at about 9 km to check Blood Sugar and was at 115 so I took GU and had 500 ml of water and then got going again.  The next part of the run called for a long stretch (about 7 km) of rolling hills out into the forests.  I never really felt I had any sort of rhythm, much like yesterday, the ski mask was covered in ice by the time I got to the turn on to Velika Killseva.  This turned out to be an uphill for almost a km and then rolling hills for another 7km or so.  It ends with a long downhill which I felt I really needed.  I turned right back into the city and stopped for water and testing at 22 km.

I thought this would work out, turns out it was the beginning of the end for me.  Recall I have one 30km in the bank and 16 days of 15km a day and yesterday I ran 15km as well.  I tested, BS was 133, drank two bottles of water, 1 litre in total and got started again.  Tough lots of things tied up in that short period of time.  The lesson there is to walk and drink and test so that things don't tie up on me.  Mainly legs and hips.

I got back in a groove and stayed on Polyarna for about 1.3 miles and the turned on to Bohatyska where I was supposed to stay for 2.2 miles.  At this point I had rhythm, I think, but on retrospect what I had was good forward progress without many problems.  But,....

I made a wrong turn and ended up heading the wrong way toward Obolon.  When I discovered it I had to work hard to stay in the game and not call a taxi.  I stopped again for water and tested, BS was 100 so I figured I was about 30 km in so I took one more GU and one water and decided to carry another water with me.  This stop proved problematic as there was ice everywhere and I couldn't get going very well for about 200 meters.  But I did.

Now I'm trying to figure out how to get back to where I am supposed to be and make some decisions about how the best way to get home is.  I entertained the notion that maybe I would run more than 40k and that thought actually excited me.  I found my way back to Moskovskiy and instead of taking a left and heading toward the river I went right and headed toward my part of the city.  Small detour though, I took another wrong turn and ended up in Petrivka which is like a massive area for selling whatever you can sell.  I ran down a street for a long time where people just laid out their belongings on blankets and tried to sell them to people.  This was, unfortunately, the worst part of the run, it was a back street, never cleared so it was a mixture of ice and snow/sand.  At this point I can feel the hurt coming on and there is one more rather big obstacle to come.

I got through this section, took a U-turn and ended up on Moskovski and knew this would turn in to Ohleny Telniy and that it would be a 2km uphill slog very soon.  At this point things were beginning to become very tired.  I continue to have good forward progress and felt like I could keep moving, I took some water, which was becoming ice in the bottle and put my head down and headed up the hill.  Very tough, but my thoughts were actually on the 3km climb in Connamara that come at the 58 km of that race.  I got up the hill and headed for Permohy for the run downhill home.

By now I'm starting to get some cramping in the upper inner right leg but nothing on the left, then one small cramp in left calf and I really don't have any stride or strength to speak of but I am still moving forward without difficulty.  I am also wondering how far I've run.  I end up back at the house and shut it down with the watch saying 4:00:41.  Okay, let's go find out how far I ran.

Turns out it was 40km this way also.  Not a fast run but a run that is done that also introduced some things to think about for longer runs.  Need to consider drinking more and drinking while walking (i've never been able to drink and run I just spill it and choke on the water).  The GU worked quite well, but my endocrine system was not happy when I got back, Blood Sugar was 263 and after 10 units and two hours it finally came down to 88.

About the clothes.  Everything was soaked, the clima cool was soaking wet which made the rain gear pants wet which made the clima cool jacket wet, the second jacket was covered in ice on the inside from the wet underneath.  The book socks worked incredibly well, never felt like I had cold feet.  I was concerned about my pinky finger on my right hand at one point, it really felt like it was in trouble but getting out the forest and back in to the city (out of the wind i think) seemed to solve the problem.  I was shocked how wet and covered in ice I was at the finish.  Everything on the radiator now :)

Fascinating about the running with the traffic, who would have thought.

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