There are many words that begin with U that describe how I feel about my current injury. In general, I don't think runners deal well with not running (I sure don't!), and forced time off is far worse than a planned recovery period. I struggle with not having a definitive timeline for my return to running. I will start back when my peroneal muscle is healed, however soon or later that occurs.
|My mom has an app that finds photos that go with|
specific verses, & it is on point!
I made an appointment to run on the AlterG treadmill on Monday 10/8, sure that I would be able to run on it at a reduced percentage of body weight. I thought I'd possibly run on it all week, or maybe even alternate runs outside with runs on the AlterG. I calculated how far I could run during my appointment and even took an hour of vacation from work so I could go in late, since the AlterG isn't open until 6:30 a.m. I knew I was hard up when I was super excited to run on a treadmill!
When I began running on the AlterG, I had a very abrupt rude awakening. It was extremely painful. I adjusted the body weight down farther and farther, hoping for relief, but it hurt just as much at 10% as it had at 80%. I thought maybe it would loosen up so tried to run for a bit, but pulled the plug at 1 mile.
That was when I truly knew my season was over.
I know I still have time before CIM, and I could probably still run it; but I was never going just to finish another marathon. I can't miss as much training as I'm going to need to and have a chance to PR, so it is better for me to take all of the time I need to heal and to then select a different marathon based on when I'm able to resume training. That is also probably smarter long-term, marathon time goals aside, because I'll truly be able to get this muscle back to 100% without rushing back into training. I want to run a 2:45 badly, but I want to run for the rest of my life a million times more.
There have certainly been tears and stages of grief, and I sure don't deal with work and life stress as well when I'm not running! But I've learned lessons from this already, and I don't regret the training that I put in one bit. I loved the day-to-day process, and I would train even if I never raced. I did things in training I never thought I could do.
I did most things right. I followed my training schedule well, I ran consistent mileage week after week - you're more likely to get injured when you're inconsistent with your mileage or increasing mileage, and I didn't do either - I mostly sat at similar mileage week after week. I stretched and foam rolled daily, often twice. I strength trained twice a week. I ate nutrient-dense foods and took care of my body the best I could.
My best wasn't enough, and I realize that I made some mistakes (more about that here). In particular, I need to be more careful about running when I'm sick, and I need to listen to my gut instinct about taking days off. If I truly don't want to run for a few days in a row or get nervous about runs that should be insignificant, that is a major indicator that I need to back off before an injury occurs or worsens. I also need to work on sleeping more, but I have a very difficult time falling asleep and staying asleep, which oddly enough gets worse the more active I am (I also don't want to take sleep meds, although I use Melatonin a few times a month).
Perhaps I should not have run the mileage I was running, but I don't regret taking that risk either. I'm not going to OTQ without running higher mileage than I've done before. I felt so strong during my build, and I felt like I was handling the mileage extremely well, until suddenly one muscle wasn't. I am still proud I ran what I did; for 8 weeks (July 30 to September 3) I averaged 78.3 miles per week. This paid off with a big 10K PR and will help me in my next marathon build.
I'm not sure what's next, but I'll select another marathon once I'm back on the road. I am sad that CIM 2018 isn't in the cards, because I truly thought it was my best chance for the 2:45, but I suppose CIM will be there in 2019 too!
"The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do it." - 1 Thessalonians 5:24
I am trying to think of positive U words, which is a little harder... Uplift, unconditional, ultimate, unstoppable... (although maybe unfit - as in, lost fitness - too!).