Friday, December 9, 2011

Friday, 12/09/11 Green Mountain

Up/Down Front
4.06 miles/2,280 vert./1:05:55 (42:53up) Garmin Data

My knees have been bugging me a bit lately, (started a few days before Thanksgiving) especially my left knee, so I took nearly 2 weeks entirely off.  For a week or two leading up to Thanksgiving, I noticed that occasionally and unexpectedly, I would knock the insides of my knees together when pushing up steep grades, which I found odd, as that had never happened before.  Once I began a little time off, my right knee felt better immediately, but there was a lingering pain on the inside lower section of my left knee.  Some googling revealed that it MIGHT be a minor case of Pes Anserine Bursitis (though I could be totally wrong).  After a week off, much to my frustration, I noticed no improvement and it actually seemed to get worse.  It was difficult just walking the dog, especially in the fresh snow of 3 consecutive storms that really exacerbated the problem and my lateral stability of my left knee was terrible.

This week though, starting Monday or Tuesday, I started to observe slight improvement each consecutive day and then yesterday, I felt as though I would be OK to run, as long as it was easy.  This morning I was up early and with Allison having the day off, I decided to go check out the reportedly great conditions on Green.

Perfect is right, from the Gregory lot to the tip top of the summit rock, the trail is a perfectly packed track of snow, at least the best or equal to the best I have ever seen it.  All of the rocks, roots and bumps are smoothed out and traction with Microspikes is unparalleled, like a magic carpet ride.

When I started, I noticed Homie's car in the lot and was hoping to see him somewhere along the way and was always keeping my head up, certain he could come blazing around the corner any minute chasing a descent FKT.  Sierra knew he was ahead too and I could hardly keep up with her going up the hill.  I just plugged along, hiking often, running occasionally and generally did not push too hard.  I finally bumped into Homie on his descent about 5 minutes from the summit, so he turned around and joined me back up to the top.

Took it pretty easy on the down.  My knee felt perfect on the ascent, but I was tentative with it on the down.  It held up fine going slow, but my quads were a bit out of practice and somewhat tired despite the slow pace and was more the limiting factor.

I am a bit out of shape right now, but I am totally fine with that.  If I can just get out a few times per week and go moderate to easy like I did today, I will be quite satisfied with just being able to get a little fresh air, exercise and mental satisfaction while maintaining some base fitness to build upon in the Spring.  It is easy to get caught up in the blog world and compare what I am doing vs. what others are doing.  Occasionally I draw upon that for motivation to push harder and improve, but it can also go the other way and lead to frustration with what I have to work with (lack of time, obligations at home, lack of immediate goals, short days, etc.....).