Hellgate was bad. I've learned a lot from being injured. The first thing is that time off isn't always bad. I learned to stretch properly...something I've never been too good at or too keen on. And I also learned that training for ultras is highly advised. The Hellgate 100k taught me the last one. After 34 miles, I had had enough. I started the race severely out of shape for running a 100k, or even a 50k for that matter. Though I dropped out, I didn't think of it as a failure. It was far from that. I learned about what this sport truly asks of your body as well as your mind. I had started running about 2 weeks prior to the race with no pain, and that was not nearly enough to get me through the race. Plus, I wasn't having any fun!
Onward. Since the race, I've gotten back to running for fun. The rest of December was about running for fun. I already knew I was out of shape so I stopped being frustrated about where I was fitness-wise and just enjoyed being outside and running again without injury. January, so far, has been about ramping up mileage and getting back to the mountains. I've had several solid runs in the 3-6 hour range and while I am a bit sore afterward, I know that will go away the more I do it. I am enjoying being up and moving quickly on the trail again.
In other news, I was sent a pair of Hoka One One shoes to try out.
At first glance, they look like platform shoes from the 70's. Really really strange looking. Running in them took me a little bit to get used to, but they're starting to grow on me. They have this whole 'rocker' thing going on with the outsole that sort of propels your foot motion forward soon after foot strike. They also only have a 4 mm drop between the heel and toe, which I'm a huge fan of. I haven't been in them that long so I can't go too in depth with how I feel about them, but initial impressions are good.
Hopefully, I'll be posting more regularly.....?