Sunday, April 11, 2021

Whew!

It's been an overwhelming couple of weeks for me! Between Cocoa's surgery, working on the lake house, my continuing education conference, and some other family issues, something had to give--and that was blogging last week. With falling readership, I have been considering shutting down the blog, but I really do enjoy our little runblog community here. In a year of virtual races and isolation, the interaction with other bloggers and readers has really been a lifeline at times. 

So here I am, sharing a brief update of running and training from the past 2 weeks. I'll also share a Cocoa update at the end of the post. Long story short, she's doing great! So am I. 

Weekly Rundown-2 weeks of miles:
Week of 3/29-4/4
Monday: CrossFit
Tuesday: rest
Wednesday: Deer Grove trail run 8.75
Thursday: Strength training
Friday: run 6 miles
Saturday: rest
Sunday: IAT Devil's Lake Segment trail run 8.5 miles
Week of 4/5 to 4/11
Monday: rest
Tuesday: rest
Wednesday: Deer Grove trail run 8.75 miles
Thursday: Strength training
Friday: run 6 miles
Saturday: rest
Sunday: Des Plaines River trail run 10.25 miles

Running

None of my trail runs from the past 2 weeks were alike. On a scale of 1-10, I'd rank last Sunday's Ice Age Trail Devil's Lake segment as a 10, Wednesday's Deer Grove trail runs as a 6, and this Sunday's Des Plaines River Trail run as a 2. I chose to run DPRT today because I have a race next weekend and I wanted to work on pacing on a flat, smooth trail. This is my favorite out and back route for that reason. I couldn't have asked for a better run--my pacing was spot on and I only had to stop to walk briefly 2 times when my legs got ahead of themselves. I even had a bit of luck at the rail crossing--there was a freight train approaching and on my way back across, it had just finished passing by. Sometimes it's your day, and this was mine! Fingers crossed this good juju extends to my race next Saturday.

This tree must have just fallen overnight!

By contrast, last Sunday's Devil's Lake segment was a hilly challenge. With an elevation gain of 1287ft, I had to walk quite a bit! I got up early, took the ferry across the river, and drove the 2 miles to the trailhead. This is an amazing 4-ish out and back that starts in a meadow and ends up on a bluff high above Devil's Lake. The views are breathtaking and I had to keep reminding myself that I get to do this!

View from the top of the bluff at Devil's Lake. This is Wisconsin!

There's a Deer Grove Trail Runner's FB group and it's been kind of fun to find the segments they've named on Strava! I have trouble figuring out the segment maps but I've been spending the past 2 weeks exploring some new to me trails in the preserve. Spring is everywhere and I am here for it!

Found this beautiful lake last week at Deer Grove!

Strength training/CrossFit

First of all, congrats to my coach, Sammy Jo, who qualified for the quarterfinals of this year's CrossFit open competition (along with 3 other women from CFAH)!!! This puts her in the top 10% of all female competitors in the world. While I am not at all surprised, it is so exciting and inspiring!

Last week's WOD focused on jerks for the strength portion. The MetCon was an AMRAP of push presses, pullups, and wall ball shots. Jerks are one of the hardest lifts we do. They're really technical and I struggle with them. I was happy to land all of them with my coach watching on. 



For strength last week, we worked on mostly upper body--pullups, push presses, and a fun muscle up drill--which I loved! 


This week, I skipped Monday's WOD to take Cocoa to Madison for her surgery. On Thursday, SJ changed the focus to the lower body, having me do a back squat ladder 8-6-4-2-4-6-8 lifts increasing and decreasing weights from 115-130#.  As I write this on Sunday, I am still feeling those squats! In between each set of squats, I did 8 pushups and 12 one-legged V-ups. I'm having right wrist pain, so we modified the pushups using dumbbells. There's always a way!




Cocoa update:

On Monday, I brought Cocoa to the University of Wisconsin-Madison veterinary school for her ear surgery. After treating her for multiple ear infections, the left ear had almost completely sclerosed, making it impossible to treat anymore. I sought out a couple of options and felt the most comfortable taking her to the UW vet school for her surgery. It was also the most economical option for this expensive surgery. It was a lonely drive home, but when I heard from the surgeon later, I felt that I had made a good decision. Besides the planned ear canal ablation on the left, she offered me an ear wall resection procedure that would improve drainage on the right, with the goal to avoid future surgery on that ear and preserving her hearing. On Tuesday, Cocoa had her surgery and spent 2 nights in the ICU recovering. I received multiple phone calls about her progress. She did so well that by Thursday, she was ready to come home. I drove back up to Madison, picked up my son, and then Cocoa. 


When they brought her out, she ran past me to my son. Mom life, right? She came home with a drain in the ablated ear and a list of medications. She was also wearing a Fentanyl patch. The first thing she did when we got home was pick up a ball with her mouth! She's been recovering nicely and today she finally ate her kibble. She's much more playful and acting like herself, ramming us with the cone when she wants something. Tomorrow the drain will be pulled and next Monday, I'll take her back to UW to get the stitches removed from her ears. It's been quite an ordeal but bottom line, her quality of life will improve. I'm so glad we did the surgery and even more pleased with the care she received from everyone at the vet school. 

I'm looking forward to things calming down! How have you been? What's new in your world?

I'm linking up with Deborah and Kim for the Weekly Rundown. 





48 comments :

  1. no no don't stop blogging!!!!

    Glad to hear the good news about Cocoa.

    Your trail/lake views!!! Wow!

    Hope this coming week is less stressful!!

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    1. I think it will be much better going forward. Cocoa's surgery is done, the lake house is done, we're all getting vaccinated...

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  2. NOOO please keep blogging! For most of us, blogging isn't what pays the bills, so we get to do whatever we want to do in our spaces...I follow people who post every day and people who post once a year.

    It's fun to see how my dog's relationship with my stepsons has changed over the years. When they were little she thought she was their mom and was by their sides 24/7. Now that they're bigger she hangs out with the adults a bit more but the boys are still the sun and the moon to her. All of which is to say she would have made a beeline for them just like Cocoa did.

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    1. I've got some books to review and a few products to share--plus, I love runfessions and the coffee date, so I'm not going anywhere. It's just been a very crazy couple of weeks. I thought that once the boys were gone, I'd have more time?

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  3. wow you sure do have some gorgeous trails by you! I'd love some trail tips since I have minimal experience on them. Now there is a great blog post idea for you! Glad cocoa is doing better and resting at home. I feel very busy now as well although I am not sure with what! :) Way to get in some great runs and workouts this week

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    1. I have an introduction to trail running post in my draft folder, lol. Just need to sit down and write it. I feel a bit like an imposter!

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  4. We missed you last week! I hope you don't stop blogging. I need the inspiration for my strength training!
    Very relieved to hear about Cocoa. That's so stressful (for you and her.) It sounds like she's doing great!
    Those pictures from Wisconsin are beautiful. My grandparents lived in Wisconsin so I spent a lot of time there as a kid.
    Good luck on your race! Hope you have a calm and uneventful week.

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    1. Thank you Jenny! I hope things stay nice and calm this week!

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  5. I'm so glad Cocoa is on the mend. That's quite the procedure she underwent! Glad the care was good at UW Madison. We've taken Matilda to the University of Minnesota vet before and they are THE BEST. They were able to help with things our normal vet couldn't.

    I have the same feelings about blogging sometimes; I don't have a huge readership and its definitely gone way down. I used to post so much more frequently and now its mostly the weekly recap. I'm hoping that changes when races and travel are back, as that used to be a lot of what I wrote about, and I do really like having this space to look back at...But sometimes it feels like a chore/one more thing to do!

    Congrats to your Crossfit instructor! The top 10% of women- holy moly! She must be really strong!

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  6. I hope things quiet down for you. I so get feeling overwhelmed and the need for blogging to take a backseat.

    Wonderful news that Cocoa is on the mend - I'm sure that is a huge relief!

    Your trail photos are beautiful! I hope all the goodness of today's run carries over to your race next week.

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  7. I can only imagine how stressful Cocoa's ear infections and surgery have been. That's a huge burden lifted and I'm so glad she came through like a champ. Ugh on all the COVID in Matt's house but thank heavens he did not catch it! Congrats to SJ! Wow!

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    1. I'm grateful Matthew got the vaccine and thrilled that it's keeping him healthy!

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  8. I'm so glad you're okay (was wondering when you didn't blog) and that Cocoa's surgery went well. Please don't shut down your blog! We're here whenever you have time.

    After a year of mask wearing I came down with strep throat. Who can figure this stuff out? I have had it numerous times so I recognized it immediately and now I'm on my last day of antibiotics. At least it wasn't COVID, right?

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    1. I'm so glad it was just strep throat, lol!!! Who'd ever want that? But it's better than COVID.

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  9. Yikes on that tree! I wonder if anyone heard it fall. ;-) I’m glad Cocoa is doing well. It’s so hard when our pets need care. You’re lucky to have access to such a great place.

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    1. I had that exact thought when I saw the tree across the trail! It was huge!

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  10. You really did have alot going on these past few weeks! All your run views look amazing. Glad Cocoa is home and doing ok!

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  11. Glad to hear Cocoa is doing well. I know how scary and unsettling it can be caring for a dog post-surgery. They can't tell you what they're feeling, and you can't explain anything to them. I swear it was easier being a new mom with a tiny newborn.

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    1. We're glad that she got such good care at the vet hospital!

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  12. Taking A Break Is Totally Understandable - Not Desirable But Time Is Important - Too Funny Cocoa Ran Right Past Ya - Excellent Photos And That Big Tree Down Is Incredible For Sure - Righteous Cross Fit Shots - Looking Dang Good There - Well Done - Enjoy The Hubby Time And Stay Strong

    Cheers

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    1. My runs have certainly been a bright spot in all the chaos. Grateful for the trails!

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  13. So happy Cocoa's surgery went well! She's going to feel SO much better.

    Good luck with your race next week!

    I've been juggling a lot of plates lately too, and yes, have also considered not posting as often or letting it go but yes, I love our community!

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    1. Cocoa overdid it yesterday and today's she's mostly sleeping, lol.

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  14. No, you are not to stop blogging! My own blog does come and go and the running aspect is definitely not there at the moment, still feeling everything is too contentious to go on about what I'm doing or not doing. But I love reading your running updates and book reviews.

    Anyway, well done you, well done Cocoa and well done Sammy Jo!

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    1. Well, you and all the others in our community are the reason I'm still here! I've got some unfinished business still with the blog, so it will go on...

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  15. Keep blogging!

    So glad your dog is doing well.

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  16. noo! please don't stop writing! I really enjoy reading your blog. What are the best ways your fans can promote it?

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  17. Ok, so you had a beautiful run and found some gorgeous spots, and your weight lifting and strength are on point, but I'm here for Cocoa!

    I'm so glad she's doing better, and I laugh at her ramming you guys with her cone! She will NOT be ignored!

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  18. Please do not stop blogging. I am a huge fan of your blog. I enjoy your weekly updates and your book reviews. I am glad to hear Cocoa is doing well. That must have been a frightening thing for her and for you.

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  19. So glad to hear Cocoa is doing well! What a cutie. That view on your run was so beautiful! And yes, it's always good to have a break, but always great when you come back :)

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    1. I do love our blogger community...which is why i'm still here!

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  20. Hey Wendy! sorry so late catching up on blogs this week! I do hope you stick around blogging, but obviously you need to have a little bit of joy from it to carry on. I have considered it many times but it really is our runningblog friends that keep me going. I would miss you all too much! (luckily I can still follow everyone on IG but not *everything* goes down there, am I right?

    Devil's Lake sounds challenging but amazing!

    So so glad Cocoa is ok! and I am sure you made the right decision!

    Are you ready for your race Saturday??

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    1. I did it! And yeah, it wasn't exactly smooth, but hey, experience counts, right?

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  21. I totally agree re: the community being a lifeline. It has been such a help even when I feel like I have nothing to say. So glad to know you. xx
    I love that photo of you and Cocoa. So glad to have read via social that she was on the mend as I am perpetually behind in reading here.

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    1. LOL, I feel you! Blogging is a time suck. But I love our little community here.

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  22. As with many of the prior posts I concur that you cannot give up on blogging! Your blog is one of a handful that I follow and would be truly missed! Love that Coco is doing well! Good luck on your race...

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    1. Thank you!!! I love to hear from people, glad to know you are one of a handful out there!

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  23. So glad to hear Cocoa is doing well after her surgery! That must be a relief. Also glad to read that trail therapy helped your mental state. It always does the same for me. Good luck with the trail race! Isn't it nice to be able to do some in-person races again?

    And...I hope you keep on blogging. I have the same feelings every once in a while, but I love this running community too. It feels like home in the blogosphere to me.

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    1. It is great to be able to do in person races! I am done with virtual races.

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  24. Please don't stop blogging! I just started following you and I'm thrilled to see someone posting about running in WI. I don't know whether you live here, but I do and I'm relatively new to the state. So still figuring out running here, etc. Plus, I'd love to get into trail running, and seeing posts like yours makes me want to make that happen at some point! Anyway - just wanted to let you know that blog readers are still out there!

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    1. Thank you so much!!!! I'm still here, lol. If you are on a FB there is a group of Wisconsin women called Hikerbabes--they do more hiking than running, but they go to a lot of cool spots. I live in Illinois but we have a lake house in Wisconsin that we spend a lot of time at. There are so many amazing place to trail run/hike.

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