|This blue belt and I have become good friends. Do you think Brooks makes water belts with their name on it? Who needs Pure Flows? I could start a new fashion trend..heck, I could just start road running with it.|
Here we are again. Does this photo look familiar to some of you? That blue belt (Sorry Stephanie, I forgot I still had it but good thing I did), the pool...perfect way to spend a Wednesday night after your husband gets home from work. So much better than running on the road and getting your run done outside. Right? Um, no. But it's better than nothing.
I've gone back and forth about even blogging right now but I finally decided on Yes, yes, I should. Part of the benefits in reading running blogs is reading about other runners' real experiences. The ups and downs. Not just the fluffy stuff. The stuff we can learn from, gain some inspiration from, or just learn what NOT to do.
So, marathon training. So far, so good. This is the smartest I've trained yet. At least when it comes to trying really hard not to do too much too soon. In fact, I haven't really had any HARD workouts yet. My training has been mostly easy base training with some moderate to moderately harder work thrown in the last couple weeks. Nothing super fast. Nothing that seems daunting. All manageable. And I'm determined to keep up with this slow and steady approach. If anything, for the sake of being able to just run...period. As I said before, this training cycle for me is all about enjoying the process and being able to run healthy. And that's the reason for some pool running last night. And possibly today and the next. Or maybe some cycling.
Tuesday proved to be a really great workout on rolling hills (and some more extreme ones). Nothing fancy or mind blowing but just another step in gaining fitness and carrying on slow and steady. I did 9 miles with 8x1200's @ approximately a bit under or at 7:00 min pace for most of them. All felt good and strong. I had a friend to run with. Felt moderate to moderately hard on the last couple but all felt strong. My IT band bruising hurt but nothing that kept me from running. But that's where I think the bruising might have thrown my "Listen to your Body" philosophy off a bit. Or rather gave my "Listen to your Body" Ears some little body earmuffs. Hard to really listen when there is some other part of your body screaming a little louder than normal. Similar to parenting three children with one VERY LOUD 3 year old boy...he kind of causes me to not always hear or be as attentive to other things in my world. Distracting.
I'm wondering now if the IT band pain masked some other tweaks or minor pains in my leg. Right now, I'd like to say I'm not injured. Pretty sure I'm in that little land right between healthy and injured. That thin little section of stretch that too many of us end up failing to slow down in and then end up on the other side. I'm hoping I'm not only not on the other side in the "In#$ry" column but that I've already made a U-turn and am heading back to the healthy side.
So What's UP?
That pesky left hamstring of mine is what's up. It doesn't seem to be working too well. Running without injuring myself yesterday wasn't an option for me. Stride just was off. Hamstring not firing the way it should. Maybe tired? Definitely weak. And I can feel a bit of pain if I probe around in there. So, I'm guessing it is a tweak. A weak link. A minor strain maybe. That's where I'm wondering how to go about it without making it worse and still holding on to my fitness/steady progress. That's where some of you can possibly help me since we all know we don't always think clearly when we are faced with roadblocks like this on our focused journey of marathon training. I want to be smart here. I want to keep running as we all do.
Some steps I can take:
Massage...self and scheduled
Wet Heat followed by Icing
Positive Thinking and relaxation ...Ha! This one is big for me
Exercise bike...this might be better for retaining fitness rather than pool running?
So, if you're reading, Hammy, this is for you:
Dear Left Hamstring,
As you know, we've been working together for some time. You've proven to get me through many years of life feeling healthy and strong. The past couple of years you seem to be slipping up on the job. What's going on? I hope that you can figure things out so that we can continue to work together in a happy, healthy manner. Perhaps I need to take some more time with you. Or maybe some Hamstring Counseling to sort through some of these issues you've been having...I think they might call this special therapy massagestimultrasoundgraston therapy. I apologize that I didn't get to your requests in time but I'm hoping we have cleared things up now and are on the road to a better tomorrow. I value you. But I don't enjoy this thing called pool running. It totally throws off my winter luxury of not shaving my legs very often. However, I seem to continue that trend despite the bathing suit. Good thing there are many hairy dudes lingering around the hot tub area to take away any attention that might be drawn to my over grown legs. After all, I'm sure you enjoy the extra warmth in the winter...right "Hammy". I do hope it is still okay to call you Hammy.
1. Any wise words of clarity for smartly dealing with this niggling, annoying, pesky, possibly tweaked, tired, mildly (hoping) strained, 34 year old Hamstring? Even the mental aspect of this minor roadblock. You know, the words you would have or would still tell yourself when you find yourself in that little strip of land between healthy and injured? Before you went that one step too far?
2. Do I partially blame my past two posts on "Injury prevention" for "Jinxing" me? Ah, yes. Note to self: Just keep quiet, hold your breath, and hope for the best. And if you do write about injury prevention, AT LEAST knock on wood for a couple hours perhaps. Ha!