Wednesday, December 19, 2012

Weekend trip to Dwellingup

So I hadn't really said much about this on the blog but during the latter half of the year I began training for another ultra-marathon. This one was off-road, in the middle of the Australian bush, in summer. A big task!

Anyway, training was going well, many had predicted a top 5 finish for me, my coach was pleased with progress and predicted a cracking time.

Along came my biggest week of training, around 90km in total with a 34km long run. Unfortunately during the long run my knee got very painful!

So it was off to the physio as soon as I could. I was diagnosed with patella femoral pain syndrome (hmmm fancy name for a sore knee). Anyway, as it happens because I am still breastfeeding (yes hippy mother here) there is still relaxin in all my joints etc. What this means is my muscles have to work a lot harder to "hold everything together". Over the peak week of training my muscles just had enough and stopped holding the knee in the right place!

Next came the decision about what to do about the race. I could still run regularly (albeit short distances - up to 10km only) and my physio said we could manage the pain and get through the race, however there would be repercussions from racing. But.... after years of training and racing, I made what I think was the best decision for me long term, and I decided not to race this year. I didn't want to be stuck in the middle of the Australian bush in Summer with a bung knee and risk further damage potentially not letting me run in 2013! It was a really hard decision to make and I was upset about it for days afterwards!

But there are other races, and hey I think I achieved something anyway, while being a full time working and breastfeeding mother of an energetic toddler I managed to run up to 90km a week for 17 weeks. Not bad really! I am lucky because I managed to do most my week day running at lunchtime from work, and Jason and Ethan were amazing at letting me get out running in the early mornings on weekends.

Anyway, although I couldn't race we still decided to take the trip to Dwellingup as we couldn't get a refund on our accommodation. Boy am I glad we made that decision.... check out the beautiful setting we were in.
Ethan certainly loved it! The manicured rolling lawns were perfect for truck driving!
We invited our friends Sandy and Nathan to join us... and as you can see, Ethan and Nathan had some serious man time together!
There were heaps of ducks (and other birds) on the lake for Ethan to enjoy. As well as some cute donkeys to feed!
Unusually for a Perth December there has been a lot of rain. Here we are checking out the flooding at one of the many local camping areas!
On the property itself there was a lovely, spring fed lake. We had such a great time at the lake. It was perfect. There was a little sandy area for Ethan to play in, deck chairs for Sandy and I to sunbathe in, a nice shallow section of water that we could partition off with the water craft got Ethan to play in (although he could escape pretty easily), and heaps of fun water craft for us to play with!

Here are Sandy and Nathan on the paddle boat!
Ethan and Daddy enjoyed the "Water Quest"! (So much so that on the last day of our trip away Jason and Ethan had to do numerous trips across the lake in it!).
Ethan and I had a few trips out on the lake as well!
Jason set a couple of challenges for Sandy and Nathan... this one was easy - getting across the lake and back standing the whole way! Ethan was very interested in this one!
Ethan had a ball!
So all in all it was a great weekend with great mates! A great idea to unwind during the silly season and get away from all the busy-ness!

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