Monday, April 14, 2014

Running Challenges

View from my home office window at 5:40 Monday morning. . . . didn't want to shock Ms. Robin with the flash, so please excuse the blur. . . .

Today's the last day of classes, and I'll admit I'm very much looking forward to a less performance-directed schedule (although not so much to the reams of marking and the inevitable meetings and meetings and meetings). The mid-teens (Celsius, natch!) temperatures we had this weekend have me itching to get into the garden, although I do wonder if last weekend's weeding forays had something to do with my knee issues.

I have another physio appointment tomorrow, and I'm trying to stay positive. A running buddy with marathon experience and recent certification as a fitness leader coached me (via Facebook messages) through my panic and discouragement at missing my long run this past weekend. She assures me that I have enough foundation to run the marathon even if I don't manage any more long runs between now and then. We'll just have to wait and see. I do recognize that it wouldn't be smart simply to run through the pain, although that is a very big temptation -- especially since the tenderness generally eases as my muscles warm up.

I'll probably write more about my response to this setback (from both a training and an emotional perspective) as I figure out what my physio thinks and as I move through this week. For now, I'm still visualizing myself running and completing the BMO marathon, but I'm also thinking of positive ways to respond if that possibility evaporates.  Meanwhile, I've got an ice pack on my knee, and plans for a long walk and some foam-rolling . . . .

18 comments:

  1. The fact that tenderness eases as you warm up is a good sign. Take a break from running for a week, get some massages, go for walks. Endurance fitness declines quite slowly, compared to speed and strength. So don't worry. Your body is now telling you to take a break so listen. You'll then have a couple more weeks to gently resume and taper. ( no more long runs) The high mileage you did early on may have caught up with you. Time to rest and refresh. Don't get discouraged. Positive self-talk and visualization are what you need now.

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    1. OH, Angela, this is such a welcome comment! You echo very closely what my running buddy told me this weekend, and the reassurance really helps, especially coming from someone with so much running -- and marathon! -- experience. Thank you!

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  2. I don't know anything about running, but I do think that if you really want to do this marathon, hell or high water, you take a break now and save yourself for the race. You may suffer, better to suffer in the service of the Big Goal:).

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    1. Yes, this is what I've decided. Tough because I'm addicted to my runs for all kinds of reasons, but it's the only sensible approach, I must concede.

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  3. I am not a runner but I do know that we need to take care of our joints at our age!
    Getting professional advice is a sensible idea as you have worked so hard for so long and I can hear the determination in your words to run no matter what. Good luck.

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    1. Thanks, looking forward to visiting my physio again today. . .

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  4. I'm not a runner, never will be, but the advice seems sound. Take a break. Endurance will last, that I know, even if speed drops a bit. It seems your body may be asking for a little kindness.

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    1. Thanks, Mardel, and yes, I think my body wants some coddling. . .

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  5. Oh please, please treat your knees gently- from one who has been in pain for months after overdoing, and awaiting results of tests on a knee. The most delicate hinge in the body and one that is slow to heal when certain areas are involved. "Running no matter what" (or walking, or any activity) is not a good strategy for bodies we want to last for decades more. Your disappointment is keen and completely understandable and I hope you mix your tenacity with good sense- you have lots of both.

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    1. I'm not so sure that my knee is injured, quite honestly. Suspect I might be feeling some referred pain. Plus mine abates WITH movement, as my muscles relax. Crossing my fingers and, yes, being careful. Thanks for the concern.

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  6. Oh no, such dreadful news about your knee. Be kind to your knee and yourself, whatever happens!

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  7. If you treat your body kindly and listen to what it tells you, you will know what to do.

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    1. Thanks, Mme. I do think this is true, and I'm trying to listen and attend . . .

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  8. Fingers crossed for you for the marathon. From your post today, sounds like things are looking good for you to complete it.

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    1. Thanks, Sue. I'm feeling much more optimistic about getting to the start line, at the very least. . .

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  9. Pre marathon nerves are a fact of life - but do not actually transform into reality, most of the time. I do not run anymore (but this is going to change this year) but have done a number of marathons in the past, albeit very slowly as running is not really what I excel at. Don't focus on all the little niggles that frighten you, but keep remembering all the hours you have put in. That is what will get you over the line in one piece. And if something does go wrong, slow down, assess and then just keep on going...run, walk, run-walk, whatever, till you finish. You will find a way to do it. Enjoy!

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    1. I really appreciate you taking the time to reassure me, Annie. It's been an interesting discovery to me to realize the psychological part of the prep. I'd thought I was fine, but the muscle tension I've been experiencing has as much to do, I suspect, with anxiety as it does with over-training. I do think now that I'll be at the start line on the 4th of May, and if I'm there, I'll somehow keep moving until I'm done, barring serious injury or pain. . .

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I'd love to hear your response to my post. Agree, disagree, even go off on a tangent, I love to know you're out there, readers. Let's chat, shall we? I apologize, though, for the temporary necessity of the Word Verification -- spam comments have been tiresomely numerous lately, and I'm hoping to break that pattern.

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