A stress reaction

On day 4 of Fire & Ice, after running about 80 miles altogether, I had severe pain on the lower part of my left shin. I ignored it and continued for at least another 30 miles in the next couple of days. I will step forward with my right but I had to drag my left to keep moving. When the race director said he’s not gonna let me go on the last day, it was heartbreaking. He said if I went, I will be by myself, without any support if I needed it. So I pooled in my resources to discuss my options. I talked to Shan, Ellen, Cat, and Matthew (I just met him at this race) and they helped me make the decision to not race the last day (I still went, without my pack for a few miles). Amy (from OK) also chimed in on fb asking me not to do anything stupid and to stop, citing her own bad experience. I came back home and decided to wait for a few days to see if the swelling and the pain will go away. After all it is just a muscle strain, right?

Wrong.

An MRI showed I have severe stress reaction on my left tibia. A stress reaction one teeny tiny step before a stress fracture. Had I raced the last day, I would have come home with a full on tibia fracture. My initial reaction is how thankful I am to those who walked me through the decision making process that night. Special mention to Amy (from OK) for posting the right words, in the right order on that comment on fb and Cat (my dietitian) for calling me back, realizing that I am in crisis mode.

What now?

I have 2 races, a full and a half, on the last 2 Sundays of October. I have been ordered by my doctor and my podiatrist friend to not run at all and go through this rehab routine for the next few weeks. I told them I’d rather kill myself.

Never too early to say thanks….

Remember, it takes a whole city(apparently) for me to get ready for this race. I’ve mentioned a few people before, who have been part of this journey from the beginning. I wanna make sure that I give them proper credit!

Ellen – my race partner, who is to blame for this mess. 12-face-with-stuck-out-tongue-and-winking-eye.png She has been inspiring me from the beginning with her performance. And how humble she is about it! And front-ending all the logistics associated with this race. And for all the whiskey and beer and deelish food during our planning sessions! And driving me to race after race after…

Cat – my fabulous dietitian. She gets to be on top of this list because she has made the biggest positive change in my lifestyle. For starters(SWIDT?) I eat vegetables now, not just potatoes. She made me check the nutrition levels in my body and I find out that I have severe D deficiency (that will explain a lot of my physical problems including my eye issues – more on the eye later). Even crazier that she is not vegan herself but now knows everything about vegan diet and a (vegan)diabetic athlete!

George – he makes me smile, throughout every (tough)core training session at VIDA. And remembers every race I do (there was a fucking lot of them – even I couldn’t keep up) and checks with me at the end of every race.

Deepa – you spend a LOT of time with your coworkers. When you have someone you can call a BFF at work, it’s precious. I have no idea how she still manages to keep a smiling face and offers worthwhile responses everytime I am down. And whining.

Shantanu – my bro from anotha mutha. Puts up with all my bullshit (it’s a lot) still welcomes me with open arms everytime I visit LA(which is alot) and picks up my call everytime(again, a LOT), regardless of what time it is. Being a neuroscientist, he dukes out some seriously solid advises that you should never question, but I always do.

Dr. Salcedo – I haven’t said a word about Dr. Salcedo until now, though we have been working together since March (and her lovely assistant Virginia). She is my physical therapist and a tremendous resource for an athlete with her wealth of knowledge. She fixed my tendinitis and my injured back, quickly, like a boss. I learned a LOT about performing like an athlete from her! You can go see her at Chirocentric. Tell her Saiju sent ya!

Lisa – I have not mentioned Lisa either! She is a Rolfer extraordinaire, who keeps my body parts from separating out (or something like that). Cat connected us and it’s been awesome! I cry everytime during the session but feel AMAZING after!

Amy – my RNP who has been on *it* to keep me running and do other crazy things in spite of my diabetes and a slew of related and unrelated shitty issues!

Michelle – I have known Michelle for over 15 years now. I have been talking to her about racing recently and we are going to run a marathon together in October. Talking to her made me pay attention to a lot of minor details that will make a major difference. There are a bunch of them, which I might write about later.

Sumit – my bro I’ve known since 1990 (that’s a whopping 26+ years)! When I was not sure of running this race in the beginning, he talked to me in such a way that made sense to me to push my limits and pursue my goals! Bonus points to him for not using the term YOLO.

Amy (from OK) – my partner in crime, lately. Huge emotional support provider (because I am emotionally weak and a big time whiner), who told me “you are not shallow, you are discerning” which was a revolting concept for me! Bonus points for being an excellent yoga instructor.

Sonali, Rajesh and Sona, Rajesh and Sreeja, Rajesh and Kavitha (haha, they make it easy for me to remember their names), Santhosh and Lekshmi, JK, Tripti, Komal, Thenna…. some way or the other were there for me.

And then there is lovely Stephanie. My kitties love her and so do I. I can go away for races peacefully without worrying about Tango and Foxtrot thanks to Steph being there for us. And she is ALWAYS smiling.

Here is to hoping I won’t let my team down.

Running, again!

A Better World Running, a group in SoCal that organizes these nice, inexpensive, totally chill races throughout the year. I love those races, I did one in January of this year and one last Sunday.

Last Saturday night, I woke up in the middle of the night, on my way to the bathroom, a chair attacked my left foot with no provocation. No biggie, I thought. Wrong. I had to quit at around 10 miles of the 13.1 I was planning to run. But, it was on Santa Monica beach and beautiful weather. Totally worth losing a couple of toes.

My 15K medal! 13600248_10154115257531886_3078165497768272144_n

Animal Rights National Conference 2016 was going on in LA which I attended on Saturday and Sunday. Hung out with my PETA family and reconnected with a lot of good people from the Animal Rights movement, collected a bunch of materials, and a wealth of knowledge.

#VeganForAnimalsForever #VFAF

Even though the race as an after thought for this weekend, glad to be able to do it, in preparation for my first ever trail marathon in SanFran next Sunday.

I should move to the left coast!

PS(A): Never eat a large veggie burger with onion straws and fries minutes before your 5+ hour red eye flight. They probably had to decontaminate the damn airplane after I got off.

Mountains 2 Beach Marathon 5/29/2016

The name says it all. It stated off on top of a mountain in Ojai, CA and finished at the beach in Ventura CA. Lot of downhills, couple of uphills and a lot of flatness. High 50°s to low 60°s with light mist the entire race and no sun. Perfect setup for a PR right?
No.

TENDINITIS.

But I finished, eventually. medalpng
With the help of these angels IMG_2841

Now back to tendon rehab, which sucks!

From going to the race packet pickup place in LA, only to find out it was the same day last week at this location, to racing (in my Audi rental, woot woot) 70 miles to the pickup place in Ventura before the cut off time, to then racing back to catch a lil bit of sleep because I need to get up at 2:30 am to be at the start of the race by 6 am, 80 miles away, to racing with an injury, to slow driving back to LA… it was all worth it.

Why?
IMG_2842This is the post marathon vegan dinner at it’s best. After all, this is what I run for. download

I visited Moo Shoes. The store where everything is cruelty-free. After this very pushy salesman, Maki ( IMG_2863), who wouldn’t quit, I had to buy a pair of shoes, even though I don’t need any more shoes at the moment. Good times!

And as always, I was sad to leave LA! Where I get amazing home cooked vegan food (thanks Sonali) and intellectually stimulating conversations and excellent(well, almost) chauffeuring (thanks Shan) and a lot of party time with my 2 favorite tiny lil friends.

And va who makes my travel to the left coast always a pleasant experience. Emoji-heart-eyes-face-free-printable-3.jpg