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The trouble with planning a day off in advance is that it almost always falls on the loveliest running day of the week. Today is 40 degrees and sunny, but my legs need a rest and I’m a little scared to push my feet. My long run this week was 11.52 miles. I was shooting for 15, but turned in early after feeling something wet on my foot. I looked down to find my two layers of socks soaked through with blood. It didn’t hurt, but there was so much blood I assumed a piece of broken glass had gotten into my shoe. The germ-lover in me was thrilled.

It was so cold I didn’t feel any pain until putting my heel under warm water. As I stood in our tiny bathroom with my leg awkwardly bent to get my heel under the sink faucet two things occurred to me. 1) Why didn’t I just sit on the edge of the tub and run my foot under THAT faucet? 2) My feet sometimes seem to have a consciousness of their own.

Just before discovering the horror scene in my already-busted-now-slightly-blood-stained shoes, my feet were like Get off of me. And I was like No. It’s only a scratch, possibly the weapon was mulch from one of the few remaining unpaved trails in Prospect Park. The real pain is in having to remember to put on a band aid every time I wear shoes. I wonder if running clogs could be a thing. If feet continue to strike out they’re going to have to be.

Perhaps feet will accept my handstand journey as a peace offering since it gives them plenty of time in the air, letting my wrists and shoulders do some work for a change. Not much measurable progress on the handstand front this week. I’m still backing up into the wall on my hands and getting comfortable with the sensation of attempting to stack my weight over my head. I’ve marked my comfort zone spot on the floor with a little piece of tape. It’s still 2 feet from the wall, any closer and I feel like I’m gong to flip over. My plan to inch closer is to have my boyfriend spot me just in case my feet get the idea to push off the wall.

For now, I practice deep breathing while holding myself up a few times a day, about 45 seconds each time – 60 seconds is my record. The more I do it the less I feel like my head is swelling. I also did yoga every day this week and feel better for it.

Yoga Journal has a few handstand preparation poses I’m working on incorporating. These include this one, and these inversion preppers. Curiously none of them picture a gal slowly backing up a wall with a highly distractable spotter standing by.

88 / 1552 miles