Active rest.

I did a dumb thing this past week: knowing that my angry tendon was still somewhat peeved at me [a massage therapist* told me “I don’t want to say it’s bumpy, but it feels… bumpy”], I ran on it anyway.  I did slow, easy, short runs – 2.2, 4.2, 2.1 miles over three days – and angry tendon became increasingly more angry. So, I’m not fighting it back, and I’m giving it active rest (and lots and lots of ice at night) until marathon training starts on July 10, which is a week from Tuesday. “Active rest” means that I’m still exercising, just not running – so, weight-lifting per usual, biking, elliptical-ing, maybe some rowing if I get bored this week. The not-running is killing me, especially because I’ve just discovered that running at 5am when the stars are still twinkling and the sun’s not up yet and it hasn’t had a chance to become horrifyingly hot out is a really, really awesome (as in, I’ve nearly hit telephone poles because I’m gawking all open-mouthed at the sky) thing. But, I have all of the rest of the summer to enjoy that, so one week is not going to kill me. (I hope.)

Also, can we talk for a second about how marathon training starts NEXT WEEK? That is insane. I can’t believe the thing is only a little over four months away. I’m already so freaking excited. But I digress…

In case you’re curious, angry tendon is my posterior tibial tendon, seen here. It’s the one that runs behind the ankle bone, that is red at the top and then curves under the ankle bone and is then colored red and white:

Pardon the Comic Sans font; blame eorthopod.com, from whom I borrowed this image.

Anyway, so, in other news, it’s hot as hell outside right now. It has been for several days and will continue to be so for what seems like forever, but after long enough, you get used to it. I decided to thumb my nose at Mother Nature this morning by going out for a 14-mile bike ride at 11am, which is pretty much exactly when they tell you to start hiding indoors, but I had on plenty of sunscreen and was toting a ton of water, so I figured I’d be okay. Two hours later I was a bit sunburned (apparently they’re right: 30 SPF won’t do me for two hours during the peak-sun-hours of a 100-degree-heat-index day!), and rather thirsty and hot, but otherwise feeling not much worse for the wear. A frigid, ice-cold shower and about a gallon of water and some Solarcaine later, I was good to go. I’m planning to spend the rest of my evening watching Olympic trials coverage and sampling a chocolate raspberry stout from DuClaw Brewery – and by “sampling”, I mean “enjoying to completion”. 🙂

In even more other news, this week will be the halfway point of summer teaching, which has gone by incredibly quickly (and no one’s dead yet, so I count that as a victory). I found out yesterday that I got a role in a play at my local theater’s summer short-plays-festival, which is news that I love because I miss being on stage, and now is really the only time I have to devote any time to it, so that’s quite exciting. My Nationals continue to kick all sorts of ass, which is fun to watch still – though with rehearsals coming up likely in the evenings, it looks like I might be catching fewer of their games between now and the middle of August. But that’s okay! They can win without me watching.

Um, not really speaking of which, you know I love Bryce Harper, right? He’s on the ballot as one of the last 5 NL players to make it on the All-Star team, based on fan votes. If you like what I write here, would you mind heading to this link and voting for Harper? Pretty please? (You only have to do it once, though I’ve honestly lost count of how many times I’ve done it…)

http://mlb.mlb.com/mlb/events/all_star/y2012/fv/ballot.jsp

I (and Bryce too, I’m sure) thank you in advance.

*I need to explain this, I guess: Saint of a boyfriend and I celebrated our three-year anniversary last weekend by taking off to West Virginia for a stay at a cozy and romantic bed and breakfast, which included dinner, spa service, and in-room champagne and chocolates. We were only there one night, but it was absolutely fantastic; on the way there, we stopped to do some wine tasting, and then arrived just in time to grab showers and then get caught in a freak rainstorm that totally soaked us on the way to dinner. After dinner (om nom nom so good) we went a race track to catch some horse racing, and then we came back, drank wine, and giggled our way to sleep. The next morning, we got breakfast (om nom nom also so good) and massages; I got a “hiker’s massage” for my legs, which is how the massage therapist got to know my bumpy, angry, tendon, and then we went horseback riding over in western Virginia. We spent two hours out on a trail with a man who has the most fantastic mustache and corny jokes this side of the Mississippi, and I loved every second of it. We had sunny, cool weather too, which helped immensely. Then, on the mustachioed man’s recommendation, we went to explore a nearby small town via soft-serve ice cream, a stroll through their Main Street area, and dinner at the pub he frequents, and then I surprised the boyfriend with his present – matching Stephen Strasburg paraphernalia, made funnier by the fact that he (boyfriend, not Strasburg) had gotten us matching Chris Cooley paraphernalia for football season – and another surprise: tickets to that night’s game of the Nationals’ minor-league Class-A affiliate Hagerstown Suns, where last year Bryce Harper knocked himself unconscious on the center field wall making an out. The game we saw was awesome. There were 32-ounce beers, foul balls flying literally right past our third-base-front-row seats (which you can get for $12, which I love), fireworks fifty feet away at second base after the game, and 25 hits between the two teams in a ridiculous 10-8 victory for the home team. After that, we drove back to my house, and collapsed for about twelve hours. The next day, we had a lazy breakfast, played volleyball with some friends, drank beer, and made gigantic portabello mushroom sandwiches for dinner.

It was a good weekend.

This weekend has been good too, if a little ridiculously hot and full of insane evening thunderstorms, but that’s summer, no?

Hope you’re staying cool, wherever you are. (And if you’re running, know that I hate you, just a little bit, this week. :))

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