The Flaming Pins

Thank goodness yesterday’s 32k was by far a much better 32k than the last time, (probably mostly because I had no feelings of having to puke) but that being said, it didn’t come without its own drama. Lots of drama.

I was doing a pretty good job on Saturday of owning my relaxation. I wasn’t stressing, I wasn’t worrying, I wasn’t over-thinking. The second ’32 km’ found its way into my brain, my mantras came out strong: I’m gonna kick that run’s ass … that run’s going to be shaking in its concrete … I’m gonna smoke that run like it’s never been smoked before. (It helped that I had Mario next to me telling me things like “The run called; it’s scared” :D). But around 7 p.m., halfway through eating our regular Saturday dinner, which consists of angel-hair pasta mixed with olive oil and parmesan, chicken and Greek salad, and mid swallow of my one glass of red Chianti, I nearly choked. Oh crap!

I suddenly realized that my jar of Ultima electrolyte powder, which is desperately needed for a non-puking 32 km run, was in my backpack, and my backpack, which was filled with a change of clothes, was in one of my favourite running chick’s vehicles, and was being transported out to my Hill Hero’s house in Chilliwack where we were running to for breakfast/lunch. Double oh crap!

I racked my brain trying to figure out if I had any spare powder lying around the house, nope. I checked the Running Room website to see if it was still open, nope. Mario asked me if anywhere else would have it, nope. I was freaking out so bad, my hands were shaking typing in a simple message to my running chick, asking her if she still had my bag. Two minutes later, I had my answer: Yes! Phew! Crisis averted.

That wasn’t the only crisis to befall me though.

Sunday morning, just before heading out on our run, I threw my keys through the mail slot at the R.R. (we leave an hour before the store opens and I hate to carry my keys with me while running) and normally I’m really good about making sure I’ve got everything I need with me before finalizing the transaction, but not so yesterday . After I threw my keys in, I went to test my blood sugars one last time, and realized that my poker wasn’t in my fuel belt – it was somewhere in my car! Oh crap!

I knew that my blood sugars were on the downward slope, they’d already come down like 5 points in the hour and half since I’d had breakfast. I couldn’t possible go 32 km without testing them. I was freaking out – again. But leave it to my resourceful running chicks to find a solution. Lori had a Variety Club brooch pinned through her fuel belt, and Tonya suggested if push comes to shove I use that. (They’re moms, they know these things ;))

And so, for the first 4 km of the run, the only thing going through my brain was ‘Oh crap, I’m gonna get hepatitis – another freaking itis! Good thing for me, though, my running chicks know me pretty well. When we stopped at the gas station to use the washroom, Carol got a pack a matches: Hello sterilization!

It was a full-team operation with the wind all around us!

Now, for those of you who aren’t diabetics, the lancets inside the pokers, are pretty sharp, and 90 per cent of the time draw blood on first click of the poker. Whereas, in comparison, this pin was like the thickest sized sewing needle you could get and trying to jab it into your finger, without the ease of a clicking device, wasn’t exactly the easiest, or pain-free, task at hand. I kept poking it into my finger, thinking that because I’d been running, the blood would squirt out no problem. Not so. One poke, two pokes, three pokes, four, I was getting nowhere. ‘Nurse’ Carol grabbed the pin out of my hand and without hesitation stuck that sucker right into my finger and would not let up no matter how much I squeezed my eyes shut, no matter how much I scrunched up my face, no matter how much I winced, no matter how awful the thoughts going through my head were. She only let up when she saw blood.

Me unsuccessfully trying to draw blood.
Nurse Carol to the rescue.


  • 7 a.m. BG before: 9.4
  • Temp basal: -50 per cent
  • Distance: 32.20 km
  • Average pace: 6:55 min per km (long slow distance)
  • Average heart rate: 1:59 bpm
  • Time: 3:49:14
  • Fuel: @45: GU gel (BG: 4.7 (4 Sharkies and 2 sugar tabs (I did not want to have to test again!)) @90: GU gel. @2:15: pancake. @3:00: GU gel.
  • 11:30 a.m. BG after: 10.4

Now, I’ve got to give props to all the trail runners out there, you guys are core. For 29 km of yesterday’s run , we were on the trails, along the Sumas River Dyke and the Vedder River Dyke, and as beautiful as the scenery around us was, that was a bloody bitch of a run! We were dodging puddles, and skirting through mud, and dealing with big rocks and small rocks and humps in the trail. And not to mention the constant call of the poo: dog poo, cow poo, horse poo, deer poo, bear poo, ostrich poo, every kind of poo!

Ahh beautiful, seemingly never-ending scenery ...
that comes at a price with feet-torturing gravel 🙁

I was so thankful to get off those trails as my feet were aching, my calves were fatigued, and my hips were screaming. But when we arrived at my Hill Hero’s, it was all worth it. She had the most spectacular buffet of food set up for us (37 people in total!). There was pancakes and scrambled eggs and sausages and bacon and fruit salad and desserts … and even a special grilled cheese just for me 😀


Less than three weeks until the marathon = Eek!!!

10 thoughts on “The Flaming Pins”

  1. Oh my goodness the stories we have to tell. The things we’ve done. The topics we’ve talked about. All on our weekly runs. It’s been great. I’m sorry to see it all come to an end.

  2. First Blood. I think this is the most exciting blog yet. I mean, friends who would not stop until they drew blood … can you ask for any more true blue buds!!? I think not!!:-)

  3. For the record I have to say I did not grab the pin out of your hand, I ever so politely said….”Give it to me!” LOL
    Definitely going to miss running with you, it has been a blast and you are totally going to rock your marathon.

  4. It was a great run! You were a brave girl – don’t know if I would have given Carol that pin! LOL
    Its always a joy to run with you . Marathon….look out!

  5. I have to say this was one of the most entertaining runs I’ve ever been on! I’m so glad to have been part of it! I didn’t actually see the ‘stabbing’ because I was too scared to look, but I must say, you are one brave (soon to be) marathon runner! Thanks for the great run and the blog to bring it back to life!

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