Look what someone posted to the triathlon mailing group today:
"The most important rule of marathon training is to arrive on the starting line strong and healthy".
Amby Burfoot, Runner's World editor and 1968 Boston Marathon champ..
Saturday's run was aborted a mile in due to pain. The hamstring and the shin were so tight that I just couldn't move. I made a second call to my AT.
Sunday morning involved a lot of stretching before I finally made it out the door. The left knee was better, and improved quickly. By about 5km, I was able to run with a normal gait.
At around 10km, my right calf/achilles flared. Argh. It would bother me for the rest of the 16km run.
Needless to say, my mood was less than fantastic. It's 4 weeks to go until the marathon. I'm not in bad shape, but I need to make sure that I arrive healthy and strong. My paper plan was for very high mileage this coming week, then a 3 week taper. I took a look at my distance over the last few weeks, though, and I seem to have plateaued already. My distance was supposed to be increasing, but having skipped two Saturdays ago and aborted last Saturday has put a dent in that.
Apparently, my body can't handle any more distance than it's already doing. Actually, it can't even really handle that.
I'm a little less despondent today, but I'm still not pleased. I'm almost certainly going to have to change up my plan for this week, with an eye to getting healthy. The one run that I'd like to not change if at all possible is the 32km on Sunday. If I skip a run or swim this week (especially Tuesday) to try to give myself more time to recover, that would probably be acceptable.
My knee was well behaved yesterday, and might be going away on its own. The new calf/heel pain, though, is something that I don't want to revisit. Maybe my mileage has been too high for me, or maybe I needed an easier rest week somewhere in the middle of my recent spell. Whatever the cause, I'm in the mood for caution. The planned taper might be enough to see my to the start line in good health, but I'm not up for gambling this close to the real deal. Better safe than sorry.