Some things just aren't meant to be

Some things aren’t meant to be… Brad and Jennifer, the 49ers going to the Super Bowl, and me racing a half marathon tomorrow. After a solid few months of training, I felt ready to give the half a real shot. After watching women run SUPER fast in Houston at the USA Half Marathon Championships last month, I was hungry to show that I too have been putting in the work. I’m eager to get my 2016 Marathon Trials qualifier out of the way, and Sunday I was planning on taking a stab at it, or at least going after a big half PR. But like I said, some things aren’t meant to be.

This pesky little thing called asthma got in the way. 2 weeks ago I came down with a cold. Nothing major, I thought at the time, but I nonetheless took an aggressive approach to getting better. I took days off from work and running, cancelled a workout, slept like it was my job and pounded the OJ like a frat boy drinks beer.

But with asthma, even a cold can be major… what for normal lungs is just a minor illness can quickly turn into bronchitis or pneumonia for an asthmatic like me. On top of the cold, add in Ohio’s bitterly cold dry air and breathing 100 years of dust from my old house… not a good combination. Despite my best efforts, my lungs didn’t stand a chance.
Snowy Ohio trails are beautiful but bad for my lungs...
I ended up in urgent care sounding like a smoker and coughing up a lung. In a quick 12 hours, I went from feeling great to being the sickest I’ve been in years… that’s asthma for you. The urgent care doc hooked me up with some hard-core steroids to wipe out this bug, but the damage was done. Like so many winters of my childhood, I had bronchitis.
Using the nebulizer at urgent care
Lucky for me, my fiancé is a doctor-to-be and took excellent care of me – he’s already taking the “in sickness and in health” marriage vow quite seriously!  But all the good care and powerful steroids in the world couldn’t turn things around fast enough to be sufficiently recovered to race on Sunday. Although I’ve improved by leaps and bounds, I’m still coughing hard enough to elicit glares from fellow gym-goers as I hack away on the treadmill, as well as evil eyes from my aisle-mates on this flight I’m currently on… telltale signs that I’m far from healthy and far from ready to race.

I’m still headed back to California – my lungs could use some warmer air! – and am planning to instead run the 10k at the Davis Stampede. Even though I can’t chase an OTQ, I can still run a fun race in my hometown and kick off my 2014 racing schedule with a quality effort. I’m trying not to be too down about the half – there will be other opportunities. So for now, the focus is on getting healthy, maintaining fitness, and racing fast in March and April!