4AM THURSDAY FEBRUARY 12, I ROLL OUT OF BED TO MY BABY ALARM CLOCK (Maya is crying, hungry for breakfast). Excitement sets in... feed Maya, load up the Xterra and head to Arizona for the Black Canyon 100k!!! This would be my first race back postpartum. It will only be 2 months and 10 days since that delightful evening when Maya joined us to take on the world, but I felt ready enough! The first week after Maya was born, I took off from training but did some walking. The second week, I slowly started including cardio cross training. By 3.5 weeks I was running. My plan was to actually wait a full 4 weeks to run, but one day, I went out to go for a walk and naturally just started running. It felt odd... I asked myself "Why does this feel so weird? Oh yeah I'm not supposed to be running yet!" I shrugged it off and continued running at a very slow pace. It felt fine. From that day on, I would progress into some surprisingly higher volume speed workouts. Although I didn't "run" as often as I typically do (I still included cardio cross training), I was very happy with where I was at considering. Left with only some wide spread hips and baby bulge loose skin, I was ready to qualify for Western States 100 at the Black Canyon 100k... or so I thought! Thursday night, we made it into Holbrook Arizona. My master plan was to eat and go to bed in the Xterra. This way Maya wouldn't wake me up and Wyatt could comfortably tend to her without worrying about waking me up. Well it turns out Holbrook is kind of ghetto (sorry Holbrook peeps). Wyatt refused to let me sleep in the Xterra and talked me into staying in the hotel room. 3am I awoke SPINNING. It took me a second to try to piece together where I was. Was I drunk? Where am I? As I stumbled to the bathroom as if I had chugged a bottle of wine and was still drunk from the night before, I couldn't believe I felt so awful. What the heck was going on? Was it my thyroid again? Do I have an infection somewhere? Uhg... I made my way back to bed hoping I would wake up with it gone. I couldn't sleep. I felt awful and kept spinning. Maybe I was just extra hungry. Deciding on eating an early breakfast with some caffeine, and plenty of fluids, I had hoped to kick the EXTREME DIZZINESS. Not the case. I struggled through the rest of the day until we made our final destination in Camp Verde, AZ. Still bewildered, I went to bed at 6:15pm, again hoping to wake up in the morning (race day), and have kicked this wicked whirling. A few hours later I jumped up out of bed. Scratching my arm profusely. My first thought- REALLY?!.. BED BUGS AGAIN???! ( CHECK OUT MY BLOG POST ON MY NACAC TRIP WHERE I ENCOUNTERED A BAD BOUT OF BED BUGS- JULY 2012 ARCHIVE)... I quickly busted out my flashlight, checking the bed, my body etc... I couldn't see but just two large bites?! In the bathroom, I studied my body again. Nope, just two bites (bed bugs will eat you alive so these weren't bed bug bites), they hurt but there's nothing I can do about it. Hmm I thought.. well that is probably why I had been so dizzy this whole day and there was probably something in the bed at the last hotel :( I have the worst dang luck with hotel bugs. Oh well, back to bed, I NEED to kick this crappy feeling! Race day morning... "yay!.. I slept some...and yay I was not dizzy, but damn, I had a headache." No biggy, I will take 1 IB profin (although I don't recommend it nor like to because it inhibits the absorption of electrolytes), to kick this, lather on some itch ointment for the bites, and some tiger balm to smell like race day! The start was cooler and windy but we all were well aware of the hot conditions ahead. Despite being a bit uncomfortable about my post pregnancy body, I decided to let it all hang out and keep as cool as possible! The race looped us around the Mayer AZ high school, dirt track and down some back roads until we veered off onto single track trail. The mountainous views were beautiful, complete with sun glowing tops, and a clear blue sky to kick off the adventure. The next 20 miles would fly by. Leading the women's field, I knew Caroline was near on the hunt. She passed me just after Gloria Aid station where we would run together for some time. My feet danced over the rocks and down the mountains following close behind. As I fumbled for my gels, my right foot caught a rock and I took a hard nose dive into rocks? cactus? who knows? It was hard enough for me to be vocal about it. I was a bit shocked as Caroline shouted out to check on me, but I told her to keep going! Picking myself up to assess the damage, I realized I couldn't hold my water bottle in my right hand any longer. It didn't matter, I had another hand :) Catching back up to Caroline, my body seemed to be in a funk. I for sure caused some damage to my neck, right rotator cuff, and hip. I couldn't really make out how bad it was, but just kept telling myself whatever I could to keep going. My hope in finishing the race was diminishing rapidly. My stride had shortened considerably, I lost site of Caroline, and wondered if I was causing myself more damage by pushing on. BLUNTLY SPEAKING, my vagina bones had sharp pain on the right side!!! I rolled into Black Canyon Aid station just after seeing Caroline on the out and back part (surprised I was actually holding onto a decent pace even though I felt like I was crawling). Wyatt was there to greet me, get me refreshed and back on the trail. I hesitated. I asked him if he really thought I could still push on given the situation. I was bloody so it was evident I took a fall, but as I tried to explain that my pelvis pain wasn't just an "overuse" pain, the crowd drowned me out, cheering for me, and Maya's whaling didn't help either. I took a breath, kissed my baby Maya and muscled myself back on the trail. I decided I wouldn't drop unless I was overtaken by the rest of the women. After all, I was still holding second place and only caught a brief glimpse of 3rd about 15 minutes still behind me. Spending the next few miles battling demons in my head, I realized that vaginal bone pain is not normal, even being postpartum, and that if I were to qualify for WS, I may have a cracked pelvis if I kept forcing myself to continue and wouldn't be able to race WS anyways! This wasn't a boo hoo it's hot, this is hard, I suck kind of moment, it was a DON'T BE A STUPID IDIOT and take yourself out of the rest of the year when you just started... moment. This was around mile 41. Despite thinking I made the smart decision, I am still disappointed (especially when looking at the map and seeing how close I was!). I know that God has a plan for me, maybe he will bless me with another WS opportunity in some other way or some other race or some other year...but I've decided not to dwell on it and when it happens it happens and I will be gunning down the record at WS at that time! For now, I'm grateful that: 1. I ended up sleeping in the hotel room that night on the bed we were originally going to place Maya on BECAUSE, what I encountered were SCORPION STINGS!!!!... Makes sense now, and they are healing okay. 2. After seeing the doc, there is no real damage evident from the fall. My pubic bone was jammed up on the one side, I sprained my pinky, jacked up neck and right arm... but after a few awkward adjustments... I should be good to go!!! Thanks to Dr. Barnes of Barnes Chiropractic, Ultimate Direction, Gu Energy, Eldorado Springs Water, Black Diamond, Icespike, Zeal Optics, Goal Zero, and my awesome husband, teammate, and friend Wyatt Yates (and of course his crew side kick Ms. Maya!!!) ... and all of you for your crazy awesome support! I hope to see you on the trails real soon again! VIDEO BELOW!!!