Giving up the fight, but keeping the streak alive.

Since I ran my second half marathon in October, I have been trying to continue with my training. I had hopes of running my third half in December, my fourth half in January, and my first full marathon in February. Unfortunately my body had other ideas and I have finally given up the fight. Lately, most of my runs have not been the greatest and I have been fighting my way through them. I’ve been unable to go any further than 15 miles without some kind of injury sidelining me. For the last few weeks, every run I have done over 3 miles has resulted in pain and always in a different spot so it doesn’t seem to be a recurring injury. I just think my body is telling me I need a break and I need to scale back my weekly mileage. 

I will conquer you one day marathon!

On a more positive note, I can still run and I am keeping the streak alive. I have managed to run at least one mile for the last 7 days and I do not intend on giving up on that challenge. Here is how the miles have added up so far:

Tuesday: 2 miles

Wednesday: 1 mile

Thursday: 10k fun run

Friday: 1 mile

Saturday: 3 miles

Sunday: 12 miles

Today: 1.5 miles

I left my cousin’s house on Saturday morning to head home and after it warmed up, I went out for my run. I was planning on a long run on Sunday morning so I didn’t want to go too far or hard but I was feeling good so I ran out 1.5 miles and ran the whole way back feeling pretty strong with a pace of 8:51. It was a great run and gave me hope for the long run I had planned for Sunday. So that night I carbo loaded with some delicious pancakes with peanut butter on top.

I got up Sunday morning and knew that I wanted to get the run done first thing because I run better in the mornings. But it was 25 degrees out! So I bundled up in my running capris, compression socks, thermal top, my new pullover from Walmart, gloves, and a headband to keep my ears warm. At mile 3 there was still frost on the ground:

My hands got hot around mile 2, so the gloves came off, but I needed everything else to keep me warm for the rest of the run. Here I am happy for a walk/fuel break at mile 3:

At mile 6 I started feeling some pain in my achilles/calf muscle so I turned around and had another walk/fuel break.

Please excuse the luggage under my eyes, that’s what my allergies do to me.

It is so peaceful and beautiful running out here:

It was a struggle with the pain in my calf continuing to irritate me but I made in back home, 12 miles in 2 hours 1 min. I was pretty sore the rest of the day so I did my best to continually stretch and foam roll. When I woke up this morning I still had some residual pain in my calf so I rested most of the morning before heading to the gym around 10:45.

I decided to take it easy to try to work out the soreness in my legs, 35 slow minutes on the bike and 35 minutes at level 2 on the stair climber. Then I needed to get in my run for the day and it was raining outside, so I reluctantly hopped on the treadmill and did 1.5 miles at an average pace of 10:30. It was boring! But I got it done and the streak continues!

Gym time fun

I took my healing/rest day very seriously yesterday and stayed in bed all day. I did get up to feed my body (makes for faster healing), get some ice for my injuries, and to foam roll like no tomorrow.

This morning I woke up feeling some motivation to get sweaty , so I headed to the gym to get my cardio on. When I walked in the gym, I had a wonderful surprise waiting for me:

Yes, we finally got a stair climber! But first I needed to start easy, so I went with my go to stationary bike. I spent 35 minutes at a very easy pace, just feeling out my body and making sure I wasn’t doing any more damage. My hip was feeling tight at first but it seemed to loosen up about halfway through. After I finished, I hopped on the new stair climber, cranked up my Pandora 90s station and got to work. I felt some twinges in both of my Iliotibial bands so I made sure not to go too hard. Here was my attempt at sneaking a picture of me on my new favorite machine.

please excuse the blurriness, I was getting my stair climb on

I did some easy strength training then got on the treadmill to walk. I captured proof that I was taking it very easy. I walked for 28 minutes and then tried out some light jogging (4.5-5.0mph) for the last 2 minutes. It felt so good, I wanted to keep going but I controlled myself and stopped.

After I got home, I took off my shoes and this is what my socks looked like:

This was the first time I had worn those shoes since the Spartan Race spectator incident. I wonder how long it will take to get all of that dirt out of my shoes. After stretching, I made my favorite breakfast of banana walnut oatmeal, and yes I ate it out of a mixing bowl because all my other bowls were dirty.

Now here’s some Monday happy thoughts:

1. I have been thinking about chopping my hair off because it has been annoying me, but I decided to straighten it last week and fell back in love with my long hair.

2. I gave Daisy her favorite catnip toy and she got so happy:

And then promptly crashes:

 

 

 

The long run that wasn’t

So that 17 miles I was supposed to run yesterday…yeah that didn’t happen. But it wasn’t for lack of trying, I got my butt out there with every intention of putting in my miles and I was even looking forward to it. For some reason the running gods were not smiling on me yesterday.

I waited until noon to leave for my run because I am a cold weather wimp and couldn’t handle the thought of running in 50 degree weather. Turns out I either overdressed or started too late because it was hot, I really need to suck it up and get out there earlier next time. 

During my first mile there was a strange pop in my left foot and then some stinging pain in the arch. I kept running to see if it was just a twinge that would go away and it did after about a mile. Then around mile 3 my right hip started to ache but I kept pushing to see if it would go away.

mile 3, at least the view was nice

I reached mile 5 and stopped to walk for a half a mile while I fueled and regrouped. I was starting to get some pain in my left IT band and was hoping it wouldn’t keep getting worse. I started running again and only made it to mile 6 before my IT band started hurting so bad I couldn’t run on it. At this point, I was in the middle of the loop where I could either keep going or turn around and it would be 5 miles back either way. Thankfully my hip and IT band didn’t hurt when I was walking, but for some reason my foot pain from earlier resurfaced.

In the middle of nowhere

I pulled out my phone and opened Pandora to get me through this incredibly long walk (or sometimes running for as long I could before the pain started again). Running 5 miles does not phase me, but walking 5 miles is a entirely different story. My body is not used to walking long distances and those 5 miles took their toll. I finally managed to hobble my way home with a total of 11.35 miles done in 2 hours 40 minutes.

This was a nice end to my rough run

I immediately filled some baggies with ice, collapsed on the floor, and iced everything that was hurting. At least my compression socks seemed to save my calf muscles from any soreness.

I stretched, foam rolled, and showered. As long as I didn’t sit for any extended period of time I felt okay. This morning my hip is a bit sore and I feel a twinge in my foot, so I have no immediate plans for a run because I obviously need to let my body rest. It seemed like every injury I have ever suffered as a runner tried to resurface yesterday and I’m not sure why.

I did learn that I can run comfortably with my Camelbak, which will make future long runs easier. I really hope this doesn’t change my training plans, but I know I need to listen to my body and stop trying to push myself just because the calendar says I need to run a certain distance.

Do you find walking long distances to be harder than running them?

Runner’s High Hangover

I’m sure you have heard it before: what goes up, must come down and that is exactly what I have been going through the last few days. I was riding an awesome runner’s high from Saturday’s race and then from my 13.5 mile run on Sunday. Unfortunately, I overdid it with all the running and spent all day Monday on the couch trying to rehab my sore foot.

Tuesday was spent driving the 4 hours back home, napping, unpacking, then repacking for my trip the following day. Wednesday I got up at 5am and headed out for my 5 hour drive to visit with the parentals for a little while. Still suffering from the inflamed tendon in my foot, I spent the last 2 days sitting around a lot and icing my foot.

This morning I decided to do a very short run to test out the foot to see if I could run the 5k race taking place tomorrow, since I already paid for it. I made it 1.3 miles before my foot started bothering me and walked the .2 miles back to the house, all the while the pain in my foot becoming worse. However, once I got back and took my shoe off the ache almost completely went away. I’m not sure what the means for the race tomorrow. I’m hoping I can run it and not do any more damage to my foot so I will still be able to run my half marathon in October.

On a happier note, I am getting tons of entertainment from watching Daisy bond with my parent’s animals, Samson and Mortimer. Animals are so funny and provide endless amounts of enjoyment!

 This is sweet baby Mortimer, who is highly enjoying hissing, swatting, and chasing Daisy.

Oh and despite my reduction in activity I am happy to report that it has not decreased my desire for the endless amount of sweets throughout my parents house.

This is what is left of the pumpkin bread my Dad and I have devoured over the last 2 days…yummy!

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