So let's talk running for a bit, shall we? Semi serious post, Round 2.
I am in Week 7 of my marathon training plan and I've made a classic rookie mistake.
I am overtraining. like whoa.
I am training like a beast. or like this chick.
After my 12 mile run I boasted about last weekend, I had some major soreness. I took another ice bath, this time with a lot more ice AND water, hoping to alleviate some of the stress I had just self-inflicted on myself, but when I tried to run on Tuesday I had a lot of pain in my left knee.
I was only half a mile into my 6 mile run when I started feeling a twinge in my lower knee cap, but I immediately hightailed it back home and started icing. I am intensely terrified of hurting myself during this training. I will be soooooooooo pissed if I do all this training and wreck myself before I can soak in all that marathon glory.
This is how mad I'd be if I don't get to run this marathon in March:
yikes. yikes yikes yikes! I'm sorry, it's not even fair that I just showed you that picture. She is legit SCARY, but I couldn't help it. Here if you need some detox for your eyeballs, take a gander at this little doozy:
(Now, you know me, I'm a Google girl through and through, but there seems to be a mix up here. I googled "female weightlifters" and somehow I got this image. and yet, strangely, I kind of like it. Don't judge.)
Taking Tuesday off turned into Wednesday off which turned into our trip to Dublin and that meant today was my first run in over a week. I was worried to say the least. I had all these completely irrational thoughts. What if I suck at my time? What if I lost all the hard work I've done over the past 7 weeks?
I needed a serious reality check. I took 8 days off, not 8 years and despite falling ass over teakettle in the airport yesterday, I do in fact know how to put one foot in front of the other, how could I mess this up? I was waging a mental warfare on myself and I needed to start waving the white flag and call a truce.
The severe mental guilt trip I gave myself coupled with my sore knee set off blaringly loud warning bells in my head: I am overtraining. Running is supposed to be fun. I mean, why else would anyone go out and run 7 miles in 20 degree temperatures? I was allowing it to become a chore, a task, a nuisance. And it's taking its toll on my body in the process.
My assumption was confirmed by one of my best friend's boyfriend who is a high school racing coach, running the Boston Marathon this year (JEALOUS) and someone who loves to talk about "dorky running stuff" (his words, not mine). I told him about my knee pain and asked for some advice. He was so great in his response:
It sounds like what you have is Patellofemoral Pain syndrome (runner's knee). It's nothing major, but is common with runners who run a lot on pavement or are pronounced heel-strikers. If you have trails available to you, run on those as often as possible. Or grass. Pavement is like the plague for runners. I do 80% of my mileage on soft trail, and I rarely have any pain. You might try warming up before beginning your actual run by jogging lightly for 10 minutes or so, do some ballistic stretches, and head out for your workout. If it hurts, don't push it. Get on a bike, go to the gym, but don't aggravate the injury further.
It's a good thing we had this conversation over FB rather than in person so I could hide my face in embarrassment. He had me pegged, tequila and all.
Immediately after doing your long runs, you need to do a REAL ice bath. I saw your video, and you're not going to get much recovery out of it. You need to have your muscles immersed in ice, and have a bit more ice in the tub. It was a funny vid though. Tequila, however is actually good for you after a long run (believe it!).
Hallelujah to that! Perhaps I'm not an alcoholic, but actually an athletic genius?
How fast are you doing the long runs? You don't want to compromise the rest of your training week because you have taken one run too hard. A good rule of thumb is 90 seconds to 2 minutes slower than your estimated marathon pace per mile. The pace for that run was outstanding, but depending on your fitness and your race goals, it may be too much. Pain is usually an indicator that it's too much.
Well, crap. I am guilty on all accounts. Each of my long runs have been on concrete sidewalks, I secretly knew I didn't have enough ice in my first bath, and I'm definitely going too fast. At least I got the tequila part right?
The first two things I have already remedied. During my 4 mile run today, I made sure to stick to trails for as much of it as possible and I made sure to ice my knee right when I got home. The timing thing is a bit trickier though.
I am my own biggest competitor. I am NOT a team player. In fact, I hate team sports. I hate team work, and I hate team players. I generally don't like having to interact with other people. (Is that bad? Errrr.....) So this whole going slower thing is a really difficult concept for me to grasp. I am constantly competing with myself and my previous runs. The idea of running SLOWER than I'm supposed to sounds straight-up God awful to me. Why would anyone want to run slower? I don't get it. My usual thought process is this:
Hurry up, Marie. Faster. Faster. The faster you go, the sooner you're finished. Then you can take a hot shower. and eat chocolate. and drink wine. mmmmmm wine. I love wine. Hurry up and get to the wine. Must. Drink. Wine. A.S.A.P.
See what I mean? This is frustrating. I am going to try and take a serious chill-pill though. I'm still 11 weeks away from this thing and even though I'm scared/excited/anxious for it, I have to respect my body and listen to what it's telling me. If I'm dreading every run, rushing through them and then suffering in pain for days afterwards, something isn't right with this equation. I've given myself some marathon sickness. I've got marathon fevahhhh and the only prescription is more cowbell.
Walken agrees. He also told me to slow the f down or else quit my bitchin.
and if Christopher Walken speaks, homegirl's gotta listen.
*** In other news: this is my 99th post! That means my next one will be the big 100! (yep. I can count. way to go me!) I am VERY VERY VERY excited about this. So much has happened in these past 99 posts, I don't even know where to start! As a thank you to all my new readers (hi! hi! hi!) and those who have stuck with me from the very beginning, I am going to host my very first giveaway in my lucky 100th post! Stay tuned and keep an eye out for it later this week! It's going to be monumental and life changing, I promise. (Disclaimer: Okay, so it probably won't actually change your life, but I promise it'll taste good *hint hint*) ***