I am starting to get restless. My last race was Avalon and that was in January. I originally planned on running Ray Miller 50 three weeks after Avalon but I just didn’t feel like it was the right thing to do. My body felt pretty beat up and then my knee felt sore. Instead of forcing a race into my schedule, Andy Noise suggested that I plan on Leona Divide, a 50-miler at the end of April instead. This would give me ample time to train and get my head back in racing mode.
Since then, I have been following Andy’s weekly training schedule as much as I can, swapping my weekday runs mostly with elliptical hours and doing my best to get in my long runs on the weekend. This swap was mostly due to that knee thing I was referring to earlier. Luckily I am feeling much, much better. Thank God. Thank you Andy.
Although I am feeling better and have had some pretty decent weekend runs in lately, I feel like I need to run a race before Leona. I need that confidence booster to assure myself that I can do it. I mean, know that I can do it, but I want to go into the race confidently. I need that assurance that no one else can give me. I am going to run Baz’s San Juan 50k this coming weekend. Nothing crazy, just a 50k to get into that needed mindset. I am calling it a long training run. Just gonna listen to my body and run. I know everything will work out, it always does.
I am fairly positive that many of you out there struggle with balancing your lives in a healthy manner. I for one, find it extremely difficult and that is in ALL aspects of my life. I guess I have always been that way. And it doesn’t seem to get any easier as I get older, even after assuming I would eventually figure it out as time progressed. Not. Even. Close. Thankfully, I do get a little frustrated with this “cycle” of putting my all into one thing and then spotting the areas that have been suffering. But since here I mostly want to talk about running, I will relate this post specifically to that subject.
It is no secret that I love running. Let me say it again, I LOVE RUNNING! I love running so much that I forget about all the other important things that actually afford me this privilege, the most serious of which is my health. It does seem like a no-brainer doesn’t it? That if I am healthy (body, mind and spirit), I will have the world at my fingertips, or rather in my case, the running trails at my toe tips. My struggles of balance fall between two major categories: diet and cross-training. I didn’t make room for either of them. I just ran and hoped that would be enough. It clearly wasn’t. Right now I just want to talk about the diet part and I am working on being more balanced, doing whatever I can do to improve my overall health (most important and not related to running) and to become the best runner I can possibly be. Being the best runner won’t happen from just running alone, it will require a better diet that will boost my immunity, aid in recovery and ensure I am out there somewhere on the trails. (more…)
Hooray, I am running again! Four weeks of running with once a small hiccup and I am elated. Wow, I was out for 12 weeks and that felt like forever. Any day that I am unable to run truly feels like too long. My first week back I was shocked to see how all the aqua running and spinning kept me fit. Of course I knew it would help to some extent but you know how you sometimes can’t really tell if something really works but you have to assume? Like when your foot hurts and you decide to buy new running shoes and when you test them out, your foot doesn’t don’t hurt anymore? Obviously you think the shoes did the trick but did you consider that you had taken a small break or did you count the numerous times you iced? Well, I make those kind of assumptions all the time but with this recent experience, I finally have proof, no doubt in my mind.
By the end of my first week back I already had upset my coach. She sent my workouts and for my long run on Sunday, she wasn’t specific about my pace – she simply said, “9 miles 7:30 or faster”. Well, to me it was an opportunity to see what I could do without getting in trouble. During that run I kept peeking at my pace and thinking there must be a mistake, there is now way I just ran a 6:36 sixth mile. By the end of the run, I had averaged a 6:56 pace and couldn’t have been happier. Well, that was until my coach found out! Coach was very upset, acknowledging that she wasn’t very specific but happy to see where my current fitness level is. Since then, I get numerous text messages from her telling me to be patient so I don’t get injured again. You got it coach!
I am hoping my progress reports will continue to be good – cross training will continue to be a part of my program (for life) and I will be spending the next few days planning my 2012 race schedule.
So after returning from Yosemite, I thought I would try running again, assuming my foot would let me. The first week 10/03-10/9 went really good. I ran four times that week without pain. Then this past week we added a few more runs/miles that really proved I was getting better. On Monday I was supposed to run 5 miles at 8:00 pace but I was so focused on my foot that I ended up running a little too fast, around 7:30 pace. Coach wasn’t too happy about that but I felt a little better knowing that all this cross training did help keep me in shape considering that was a pretty easy run. I did promise that I would pay more attention moving forward. Besides running, I was also able to get some aquarunning intervals in too, which I am starting to long for (what the heck is wrong with me?).
I also discovered something really interesting last week too, my foot pain went away but the tightness in my calf was still there and by the second run that week, I felt it move up to my hamstring and lower back on the same side. I am hoping that this is the reason I was having pain in the first place because to me, it seems a lot more manageable. I tried to get on the foam roller a little more often and definitely need to incorporate some massages into my schedule. I have to admit though, this whole running life is very expensive, from gear, gym/pool fees, physical therapy, supplements and now maybe massages? Somethings have to suffer and I just don’t know which things to cut first.
Anyway, I hope I have a post next week discussing further running progress — my fingers are crossed!
I know when you read the title of this blog, you are probably thinking of the internet acronym that we sometimes use while texting or commenting electronically but this is ROLF, a physical therapy technique invented by Ida Rolf which is basically soft tissue manipulation, or a way to reorganize connective tissue (this is totally new to me but there is a lot of online info available).
I had the pleasure of experiencing Rolfing this past Tuesday during track practice and let me tell you, it was no laughing matter. My coach had arranged this session for me because you may or may not know that I have not attempted to run one time since the ET Midnight Half Marathon August 13th (that story/update to come). I dropped out of the race around mile 6, leaving my victory for someone else and have been limping every since. (more…)