Today was the North Fork Bank Trail Relay. I ran this one last year and I had a blast, so I was back again for another go. We actually had more people show up. Probably was due to the ten degree increase in the temperature over last year. My team was made up of Sue, Christina and myself - we called ourselves the Stridettes. That's Laferne sticking her head into the photo over my shoulder. She's in my running club, but was running with another team. I ran the first two mile leg in a pretty respectable 16:40 and tagged Christina as I came in. The trails were pretty good, but there was some ice and you had to watch out for a few sections where vehicles and walkers had made indentations that froze into ankle-twisting obstacles.
After I finished my leg I grabbed a cup of water and got my bag so I could take some pictures. I was just wandering around when one of the guys in my club came up to me and told me that I was going to have to run again. Huh? Did something happen to our anchor runner? Nope. One of the other teams was short a guy who didn't show up. So we quickly pinned the other teams number over my number and I headed for the exchange area to be ready for their middle runner, Lachlan. I was freezing as I stood there and in the rush I had left my gloves in my jacket pocket, which was back on a picnic table near the refreshment area. I contemplated going back to get them, but I had no idea how fast this team was running and I didn't want to miss my tag, especially since he had no idea I was doing the anchor leg for his team.
Soon enough Lachlan came through. I yelled for him and we ran together for a few dozen feet as he handed off to me their anchor number. Then I was off into the woods for another go at the course. I had a tough time. The first time through I ran pretty hard because I knew I was only going to have to run two miles. I had a lot less left in the tank this time around. I managed to get the second two miles in about 17:30. Not too shabby all things considered. Their team was pretty happy with it and Lachlan confided that it was probably faster than the guy I was replacing. It was a good thing it wasn't spectacular, because technically we were a Men's Masters team and I'm not a man :-)
Shannon has been feeling OK today. She's seems to have ups and downs. Last night I thought I might be going to the vet today instead of the race. But her spirits are up today, although she is coughing a little and her breathing is somewhat labored. I'm not sure, yet, what warrants rushing back to the doctor. I don't think there has been enough time for all the new meds to kick in, so perhaps that will improve things. She is due to go back the middle of this week, anyway, for further tests to see how she is handling the heart medication she is on. I'm torn and I feel guilty. You can imagine this is costing quite a bit and, while money is no object if it makes her feel better, I would like to save where I can. The less I spend now, the more I have later. But a part of me feels bad even including money in the equation as I decide whether to take her in for a vet visit.
Well, Shannon is home and the news is mixed. She was in serious trouble Sunday when she went to the vet. She had been listless, coughing for a few days and it seemed her breathing was kind of labored, so I decided to check things out. I was thinking some kind of upper respiratory infection or, perhaps, kennel cough. However, the vet determined that she had a very loud heart murmur and really bad chest sounds, so she decided to take an x-ray. It turned out that there was fluid around her heart and something going on in her lungs. She was immediately put on oxygen and received antibiotics and a diuretic to try and relieve the fluid accumulation. She had to stay overnight for observation and the vet said that she wanted to do an echocardiogram to see what was going on with her heart. But first she had to feel better.
Monday morning I called the vet's office to see what was happening. I was told that she was much improved and that she could come home that day, but she was going to have to come back on Tuesday for the echo. Tuesday, I dropped her off on my way to work. Then I spent half the day useless because all I could think about was my puppy. I got a call at lunchtime with the results. Early stage heart disease with a whole list of stuff about her mitral valves and ventricles which mostly just went right through my head. I latched onto the word mild and went with that. She's going to have to take heart medication and go for further testing to see how it is working. The vet is also concerned about her kidney results and wants to do an ultrasound to see what is going on there. I'm really having difficulty digesting all this information. I'm just hanging onto the reassurances from the doctor that it is a plus that we caught this fairly early. Shannon is home and feeling better now. She's not a hundred percent but she is interested in the world and willing to play, so I'm hoping for the best.
We finally got some real NYC winter weather and the place falls apart. I was really steamed when I got home from work last night almost an hour and half later than normal. This included a 45 minute wait for a bus that is scheduled to come every 7 minutes. This happens to this bus every time the weather gets even the littlest bit dicey. So, because the radio is saying that it is even worse out there today, roadwise, I've decided to take a mental health day and hang around in sweats and veg out on the sofa. Needless to say, the running is not going. I missed a planned 6-mile tempo run yesterday and I doubt I will be able to make it up.
Today's the big day. I'm not a huge football fan, but the SuperBowl is more of an event than a game and I'm going to enjoy watching the spectacle. I've already had a beer and I have chips and salsa and some other treats for game watching. And of course, there are the commercials to check out.
I also enjoy the Puppy Bowl. Aw, come on, how cute is that?
I managed to get in 12.25 miles last week. A little short of what was planned, but not too bad. I blew off Monday's 2-mile recovery run and didn't have the Garmin for the long run on Saturday, which was supposed to be 7 miles. So I just did the 6.25 mile out and back in the park. I actually did the 4 mile tempo run on Wednesday - 4 miles at approximately 9:00min pace. It felt hard, which is so weird, since I do sub-9s in races and don't even feel it. The miles always seem harder when I run by myself.