Like my previous posts, the next several which revolve around Kona, I wrote this lengthy account in the day or two following the race. It backtracks a little bit into the summer.
As the summer continued my hip issue was getting better but it still wasn’t really “normal” and tended to be workout to workout, which made my shy away from the longer runs and tend to choose to bike instead. Thus with the combination of more bike mileage last winter and through the summer, and continuing to ride with “the fast Petoskey guys” on Tuesday nights my biking leg was improving and I still managed to put in good running times, despite my lack of mileage. Swimming was a different story and I found it fairly easy to convince myself Walloon Lake was too cold and my bed was too warm, though I did tend to get one or two swims in. By the end of August it finally seemed like my hip was pretty much back to normal and I needed to get some long runs in or Kona was not going to be pretty. Looking back I pushed those a little to far to fast as I pulled my calf a little during an 18 and didn’t really slow down enough to let it heal. Instead I continued my training and was able to run on it, but it wasn’t exactly “normal” feeling. My calf injury was “lingering” so I dropped my run mileage again and decided it’d be good to put some more swimming time in, since I’d had been neglected on the back burner for most of the summer. That went okay but my mid September it seemed like Walloon was to cold to swim in, so I switched back to the pool in Harbor Springs (Pool Website).About a week before we were supposed to leave for Kona my calf wasn’t terrible and I could run on it, but dad thought I should go see Jeff Smith at Northern Michigan Sports Med to get his opinion (he also helped me out with my hip issue in the spring). Turns out I had pulled my Soleus (part of calf muscle deep to your Gastrocnemius). Again it wasn’t terrible, but it wasn’t going to be “100% better” my race time, even with the exercises and stretching. So like my reoccurring theme-I’d just have to suck it up.
September 30th came around and Mom, Dad and I were at the airport at 5am. Turns out the plane at TC had mechanical issues, which meant we were going to miss our flight in Det so they re-scheduled us and we got our tickets through LAX. But they didn’t give us tickets from LAX to Kona and when we asked, she checked and turns out our flight was cancelled. So after all this re-aranging and silly airline computer stuff we got to fly from TC to DET and then DET to Honolulu and Honolulu to Kona. The ticket lady also upgraded us to first class from DET to Honolulu, which was amazing to have a seat that reclined more than 2 inches and so much leg room that even I at 6’2” and size 13s had plenty of extra space. How did I get so lucky? That being said if I was actually had the extra money to pay for an upgraded ticket, I would think a massage and a hot tub would also be included for that kind of cash. Anyway we got into Kona, got our rental car, which was determined by which car my bike box we’d shipped would fit in (Rubicon 4-door), and found our way to our Condo about 6 miles south of Kona in Keauhou.