Thursday, December 4, 2008

Runathon Day 4

I was thinking this morning, as I left the house, that I wouldn't have anything interesting to post about today's run. I was planning on doing a short, easy run, out & back. Maybe I would mention my new headlamp that I bought last night at Home Depot for the Wednesday Dawn Patrol runs at Sabino Canyon. Or maybe I would talk about how this is the last workday of the week and the runs that are hard to schedule are over. That is, until I crashed.

I left The Round House and headed west on Ft. Lowell. There is a nice running trail that parallels the road that people run, walk their dogs on, and ride horses on. I started out with my usual 5 minute walk, and just as I started to run, passed by 2 ladies walking their dog. I headed down a rocky hill. Not more than a minute and a half into my run, I was doing the Superman through the air and found myself splayed out on the ground in the rocks. Of course, a car was driving by on Ft. Lowell to witness my awesome display of grace. I tried to get up and run right away, to change the situation from "Wow, look at that clutzy chick running in the cold" to "Wow, she crashed hard and is getting up and running right away! That's hardcore!" Funny how we seek to cover up embarassment in front of strangers passing on the road. I tried to run it off but couldn't from the pain, so settled on a minute and a half walk while I brushed the evidence of the soil samples from my jersey and pants. No, no fall here...move along folks...nothing to see.

I don't know how to classify this type of crash. And I feel it was a crash more than a fall. A crash (which I've done plenty of on a mountain bike) is pretty spectacular, where a fall is what grandma does just before paging Life Alert. In the mountain bike world you have crashes like the following:
  • The Auger - Usually done at the bottom of a steep hillside. The back end of the bike comes up and when the front end hits the ground, the impact sends the rider flying off the bike. Similar to OTB.
  • Yard Sale - Usually done at high speeds down a scree slope. The rider crashes so hard and has so much momentum that they roll down the hill, loosing items and clothing along the way so that the trail behind them looks like a yard sale.
  • Over the Bars (OTB) - One of the most common crashes where the rider flys over the handlebars, leaving the bike behind them.
  • The Lowside - The back wheel slides out, causing the rider to fall on one side.

And the list goes on. All I know is, I was planted completely flat-out on the ground on my chest with my arms in front of me and my legs behind me. The post-crash investigation and analysis revealed that I landed on my left side first. A rock impacted my thigh just above the knee and as I slid it took the skin off in a nice line. Of course, I didn't look at my legs or arms right away. I decided to keep running and finish off my 2 miles. I ran for another 15 min before stopping to do my cool-down walk. By then my clothes were sticking to me in the areas that hurt. That can only mean blood is the source of the stickiness.

I got home (2.11 miles completed) and took off my jersey to find a nice ground spot in my left elbow. This spot is just below the scar from my last motorcycle roadracing crash that opened up a gash in my elbow (the transmission on my Buell XB9-R ate itself just as I was heading into Turn 1, causing a nice highside). The left leg had a nice scrape from the aforementioned rock, along with another on the knee. The swelling most likely means pretty good bruises will follow. I'm glad I had my purple running gloves on, as those saved my palms from being eaten up and they are just a little sore.

So this was my first trail running crash. I don't want to make this a habit. I feel like crap now that the adrenaline has worn off. Should I be wearing a helmet, body armor, and padded gloves? Well, I guess it beats getting hit by a car.

I should be back to normal (no comments from the peanut gallery! :-p) in a few days. Liane will be happy to hear I'll still be racing Dawn 2 Dusk this Saturday and not forcing her to ride the race solo.

Once again, most likely this means no pantyhose modeling career in my future.


Holly said...

hee hee, glad you're okay. I was happy to find pictures, please include any more spectacular falls with pictures. it's gonna be a long month.

Joyce said...

I had a few nice falls when I started trail running. I even wore bike gloves for a while because I got tired of picking dirt and gravel out of the open wounds on my palms. It's been a while though...hopefully I'm not jynxing myself.