Monday, February 22, 2021


 This morning, as I rounded the top of a path and stood on the Col du Portel, a winding road that leads through a mountain pass, a rush of wind swept down tugging my hat brim so that the hat leapt backward, hanging on by my ponytail, and the rain began to fall in earnest. And I may have risen my arms in the air, twisting my hands like an Indian God or Goddess in praise and celebration of the power I felt standing there on top of a mountain along the road. 

Sheep, including a caramel-colored lamp hiding on the other side of its mother

It's been months since I've had successful runs. I fell at the end of July, and although I worked back to walking and hiking, my knee continued to hurt when I attempted runs. Then another injury in November set me back, and I determined to have an MRI to see if I'd done real damage to my knee. 

Meanwhile, though I was left to take walks and to endure lockdown, longing for the day that I could finish my exercise in 45 minutes, eating up the road with my quick stride. Sure, I may not be a fast runner, but running is always faster than walking.

After an MRI and an appointment with a knee specialist, he assured me that I could run again after physical therapy to "retrain" my muscles. I registered with the local physical therapist, who is apparently so booked up that I remain on his waiting list. 

If the doctor says I just need some muscle retraining, that assured me that I wasn't going to injure anything further if I started running. 

It's been slow though. Running and walking. Watching out for the pain in my knee. Noticing that my knee is better but my lungs are a long way from running again. 

Saturday, I managed a 3.5 mile run without walking or gasping for air. 

These look like tiny wild roses in bloom, but, if my detective work is correct, may be flowering quince

I wanted to go for a walk or run this morning, but the weather forecast was foreboding -- high winds, rain. It wasn't raining a bit before 8 and I asked Earl where I could go that I wouldn't be in danger of flying tree limbs. 

He recommended the road to Ginoles, not too many trees along that road. True, but it was uphill the whole way. 

I decided to give it a try. I started running outside my house and was able to continue running until about 1.2 miles, or two kilometers. Considering that it was all uphill, I felt quite proud. I walked on the steep parts and then ran in  between. I took a straight path, leaving the road behind to have a chance to run before I walked, out of breath, up the steep path to Ginoles. 

An almond tree in bloom and an unsettled sky

As I continued up past Ginoles, I saw a car snake around the "Col" the mountain pass above. Why not? I set out toward the ridge looming above me. Again, there were a few running parts, but more sharp uphill parts. 

Olive trees

I continued on, listening to music and singing along at the top of my voice, as much as my labored breathing would allow before I reached the winding road. 

The view of faraway Quillan

The only option was to go downhill, sticking close to the side of the road facing traffic and the few cars that passed. 

I saw one car that revved its engine and wanted to pass the car in front of it, trying to twist around the curves like a commercial, and I let out a laugh. "Your car might go fast, but you aren't out conquering it by foot!" I thought. 

So I wound back into town and kept running past our house until my app indicated that I'd passed five miles. 

The feeling of accomplishment and power has lasted all day, feeling the ferocity of the rain and wind and lifting my arms in victory over them -- this time. 

1 comment:

Noreen said...

My gosh, what an inspiring place to run! So glad to hear that you are on the mend. It's so frustrating to be sidelined, and then to get out of shape, which is where I am right now. Thanks for the inspiration!


 This morning, as I rounded the top of a path and stood on the Col du Portel, a winding road that leads through a mountain pass, a rush of w...