When Mike took up trail and ultra running, I wasn't quite sure what it all entailed. It was a complete new world to me but I saw how much joy it gave him, which made me happy. It also includes lots of scrapes, bruises and the occasional doctor/hospital visits, so obviously I sometimes worry when he goes out on the trails. But the positive out weigh the negatives, so I do what I can to stand at the ready with bandages, essential oils and my support to help him recover for the next race and training.
When he comes home form training runs in the mountains and shows me the beautiful surroundings, I can't help to think it would be great to be out there too. I know my limitations and that's okay. Our small hikes with our dog and occasionally our cat gives me lots of joy and I get to see the beauty surrounding us. But the last couple of days, I have been wondering something, which happened after Mike told me about another of his trail buddies.
Mike Farrington is an ultra runner from Illinois whom I have never met but he has become a big inspiration to me over the last couple of days. He has MS and ran the Squamish 50, 50 miler last month! That's f****** amazing!
MS is classified as an autoimmune disease of the central nervous system and has a lot of similar symptoms as CFS/ME. So I'm beyond impressed and Mike F. (just so you don't confuse the two Mike's) got me thinking about my abilities. With CFS/ME exercise can lead to relapses so it's very important to be mindful of your limitations and work within your limits. But with that said, it's not impossible to go out there and do something! I know I won't be running a trail race any time soon but I sure can do something! So let the training commence; slow but steady; for a 5km race next year. One without time cut offs as I might have to walk some of it! I have been looking at a few and will decide soonish which one it will be.
So thank you Mike Farrington!
Check out an interview Run Like A Girl did with Mike here to learn more about him.
Who inspires you and why? Please let us know as we love to hear from our readers.
I can say crazy because Mike calls himself crazy right?! Plus I think it does require some craziness to run 50km, 50miles and even longer plus adding in the mountains for a more challenging run.
I often get asked if I run too and it's a no! It's not that I didn't wish I could. Friends and family who knew me when I was living in Denmark know I used to play soccer every day of the week. I even played for two clubs because one just wasn't enough for me plus coaching girls as well as trained with selected players from around the province. Yes I loved and still love soccer.
However these days due to my illness I can't run much without getting ill and end up in bed recovering for 2 weeks afterwards. Sadly though, as I wish I could go out and enjoy the beautiful surroundings Mike sees on his trails. Being there just isn't the same as seeing it on FaceTime :)
So how is it living with a crazy runner?! Well, it's interesting, fun and sometimes worrying. It's a good thing I had some practice. See, my brother used to be a professional triathlete so I'm used to having sports gear all around the house, someone eating loads of food, training and racing a lot as well as waiting impatiently at the finish line/at home hoping he will come back in one piece.
As with triathlon, trail running is also an endurance sport and it takes a certain character to be able to do it. I'm just going out on a limb here; it also takes a certain character to live with someone who is into these kinds of sport - I'm sure my lovely sister in-law will nod at this, having traveled around and living with my brother :)
Trail running is not a sport where you can watch the whole race from start to finish. Most times you can maybe get 2-3 sights - start line if you get up very early, at one of the aid stations and of course the finish line. So what do I do while he races?! Well at his 50 miler, I decided to volunteer my time. Volunteering is always fun and I got to hang out with some great people while serving burgers and hotdogs to other volunteers and runners. It gave me a great insight into how tight the trail running family really is and it was great to be a part of this and I can see why Mike loves it so much.
A few tips I have learned since Mike started trail running: