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What a pain in the neck!

I have had times when my neck seems to get out of sorts, and it becomes difficult to turn it one way or the other, but this is ridiculous!  if you have been following my blog, you may remember that a couple weeks ago I started to notice some discomfort in the neck area. I believed it was caused by the water slide at church. Specifically, one time I did a 180 mid air and landed on my bottom as I slid. My granddaughter was running along side and just as I jumped, she stopped. So, I did not relax and slide, I landed sitting up… Well, whatever the cause, this week it has become worse! I can hardly turn my head in either direction!

So Tuesday, I did not run with my kids or with the HDR. I did, however, do a Clayve workout. Perhaps the 40 pullups or the half sitting up ball throws aggravated it a bit..

Wednesday I rested.

Thursday I made my way to Pelona Vista for the finale of the XC series. The neck was probably at its worst by this time. I debated whether or not to run. I warmed up, and found that as long as I had tunnel vision straight in front of me I was okay. A couple of times I forgot and looked to the side… ouch.

As time came for the 5k, I made my way to the right hand part of the crowd. I noticed that there were young FAST people there, so I figured that if I started there I could get away smoothly. Sure enough, the race to the gate went well. By then, though, the 270 plus runners were bottle necking. Up and over Raburn Hill was like the running of the bulls. I noticed Karl pass me on my left, leaping the shrubbery on the side of the trail. At the u turn of the loop in the basin, I spotted Lance up ahead. I caught him on a dip in the trail, but he surged back ahead on a short climb. I surged by going into the next dip, but as we climbed out of the low point of the basin he began to pull steadily away. As we ran along the fence by the soccer field we went into a strong head wind. Kristen Parsons went by, but I surged and drafted her all the way across the park. What a kind young lady she is. As we neared the gate connecting the parks she yelled back some encouragement to me!  A half mile or so later, I passed her….

Every time there was a really sharp u turn i would try to glimpse behind. A couple of times I thought I saw David Weary. I was gunning for 3rd place.  Steve Brumwell was running, so 1st was out of the question. I have not beat Carlos Aguinana all year, so I did not hold much hope for 2nd either.  Being unable to turn my neck, though, I ran in constant fear that David was right on my heels. i kept trying to push the pace concentrating on a really quick turnover, especially into the headwind.  On the loop closest to the freeway I caught and passed at least a half dozen runners. Going through the gate for the last Rayburn hill climb I asked Jesse Williams where Dave Weary was. He told me that he was coming up right behind me. I bore down over the two hills. Turning into the home stretch I noted someone not too far behind in my peripheral vision. I thought, here we go again. 3 weeks earlier Dave chased my down the final stretch and we had a photo finish at the line!

I dug and dug. I started to hear someone approach as we reached the concrete, but I found a little bit more. No one caught me, I held my position. It turned out that those foot steps I heard chasing me were 2 young ladies. I finished in 23:20.28, and they were 23:20.91 and 23:21.27. David was 7 runners  and 16 seconds back.

Looking at the results, sure enough Steve Brumwell won the age group with a time of 19:50. Carlos was second with 22:25. i was third, Jan Bercik was 4th adn David Weary was 5th. Looking at my time, I was just off my course PR! This is only the 2nd year of the use of this particular course. My best on it is 23:18.

While hanging out awaiting awards, Natalie got Steve and Justin to pose for a picture of their relay team!

photo 1 She sure is tiny next to these two …..

She also posed for a picture with me!

photo 2

There we are with our shiny new medals!

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