Recently in IT Band Category

Dumbass

I'm a dumbass. Since the ITB pains had lessened last week, I made the foolish choice to slack on the stretching, rolling and icing this week. I learned my lesson yesterday during my long run. Around 4.5 miles, I started getting pains in my right leg. I stopped at 5 miles to stretch, hoping that would help. I started back up again, but the pains were still there. I stopped after running 1/4 mile, because I'm pretty sure that if I kept going my leg would lock up and I'd have to stop anyway. I made the decision that I was better off cutting the run short than running and aggravating my leg more. Kind of disappointing, but a good reminder that I need to stay on top of things.

Not a whole lot else to report. I ran 4 at 5 on Thursday, because I wanted to go out after work with my work friends. I actually won a few games of trivia at BW3, which was a nice surprise. On an unrelated note, the owie toe issue has been resolved by my losing most of the nail. I still have the gift certificate for a spa pedicure that the Engineer gave me for my b-day, but I think my feet are way too ugly to subject someone to right now. I've never had problems with toenails on both feet before, so that's exciting and new.

Thursday:
treadmill | 4 miles | 36:48 | 9:12/mi.

Saturday:
treadmill | 5.25 miles | 49:12 | 9:22/mi.

Of marathons, shoes and ITBs

Just when I thought I might be able to see my driveway again, it started to snow today. We've had at least 5 inches come down, and I think it's still going. My snow tires worked really well, so my drive home wasn't too bad. I'm kind of disappointed in the weather, even though it's not really a surprise. This weekend is my last long run and I was holding out a small grain of hope that I'd be able to run it outside. I doubted it would happen, since the sidewalks and bike paths are still icy, but there was a chance. Now I know it won't happen since it's the weekend and I'm thinking that bike path snow removal is very low priority.

I had a dream about the marathon last night. In my dream, we got all the way to Texas when I realized I didn't have my shoes. Obviously I was freaked out. I tried to come up with a way I could get my shoes, but nothing was going to work. I tried to console myself with the thought of being able to check out Run-Tex, but was still pissed at myself for not bringing my shoes and having to run a marathon in shoes that weren't broken in. I'm not sure what the dream means, but I'm not worried about it becoming reality. Whenever I travel and am going to run on my trip, I always make sure I have my shoes. And whenever I've flown for a race, I make sure to pack my running clothes and shoes in my carry-on. That way if the airline loses my luggage, at least I'm not totally screwed.

I keep saying I'm going to wait until after my 20 on Sunday to make up my mind as to if I'm actually running the marathon. But I'm not really sure if it's going to tell me anything, unless it goes really bad or something. Because even if it does go well, there is no guarantee that the marathon will, too - I got through Med-City training without any problems, only to have ITB issues during the race day. I don't know. I'm probably always going to have that kind of haunting me (the fear of an unknown injury popping up during the race). Knowing me, I'm probably going to go for it unless Sunday is a disaster. I'm still holding off on registering, though.

Even though I haven't looked up actual instructions, I think my foam roller is helping. My ITB didn't bother me that much during yesterday's run. It did get a little tight after the run, which was annoying when I was trying to sleep. So I got up and used the roller. It felt better afterwards, so at the very least it's helping psychologically. It was also okay today. I think the stretching I've been doing before running (as well as during the day and after running), and the icing 20-30 minutes a day is also helping

Actually, I had a thought about my dream. I bet some of it comes from my having just bought new shoes to break in for the marathon. I wore them today, but they kind of annoyed me. It felt like they were �slapping� the treadmill belt, and they felt a little stiff. I ended up stopping halfway through my run to change back to the old ones, which felt a lot better. It looks like my break-in period might take longer than I expected; I think I'm going to wear only my older shoes on Sunday, to hopefully avoid issues. My feet also felt really hot, which probably added to my annoyance. I was wearing my new Wigwam Triathlete socks, and I'm not sure I liked them. I don't usually have such sweaty feet from a 5 mile run.

treadmill | 5 miles | 46:06 | 9:13/mi.

Hurry up, UPS!

My foam roller is in Washington (state), but should be here on Monday. I like having things delivered by UPS because our deliveryman shows up like clockwork. I swear, every single package he has ever brought us comes at 4:50 PM. It makes it really easy to plan around, if you know the day a package is scheduled to arrive.

Thanks for the article, Jon. I'm going to have to read it a couple of more times to figure out the Walt Special, but you're right about there being a lot of good stuff in there. I will try to add those in at some point. I've got a decent list going of things to work on. Two key things I need to work on this spring are my hamstrings and glutes. I don't know if I mentioned this, but the Clinic sports doc told me that sometimes ITB issues can stem from weak glutes. That was especially interesting to me because I was having that strange hamstring/glute issue over the fall. I think that was a precursor to the current ITB stuff. So maybe strengthening those weak areas will help me out.

Thanks for the "props" Richard. It sounds kind of weird, but in some ways running on the treadmill is almost easier than going outside for my long run. I get to be entertained by the TV, I have easy access to gel/water, the bathroom is nearby, the Engineer is upstairs if I need help, and if I run into trouble I don't have to worry about getting back home. If I didn't have the TV, though, there is no way I'd be able to survive the monotony! That being said, however, I am looking forward to running outside again once winter passes. The sidewalks are still sheets of ice, and the high is supposed to be a whole negative one tomorrow. Woo! I'm so excited that I get to escape to TX next month. (Just for kicks - currently here: -6F, feels like -29. Austin: 49F, feels like 47).

I was able to run again yesterday without problems; I think the XT day was a good call. I've been stretching some at work during the day which probably helps. I've also been really good about icing after running. (It's a good thing I bought an extra bag of peas, so I can ice both legs). I ran 6 yesterday, and 5 today. I thought about waking up early both days to run in the morning, but didn't go to bed early enough for that to be a good idea. So instead I ran after work, and got a little over 8 hours of sleep. Extra sleep is always a good thing.

I watched a couple different things the last two days. While cross-training, I watched a VH1 special "The 40 most awesomely bad videos." Normally, I hate the stupid countdowns that VH1 has started airing (hottest hotties? who cares?) instead of videos, but this one was pretty entertaining. I disagreed with their choice of "The Macarena" for #1, though. That song is just bad, there is nothing awesome about it. Yesterday, I watched "Queer Eye for the Straight Guy" and tried to watch the new Straight Girl version. The guy version was pretty good for running, as the segments were pretty long. (I like shows with commercial breaks, even though I skip them, because they help me break my run into segments. Most of my shows have .5 mile segments, but there was one segment of QE that was 1.25 miles). The girl version was kind of crappy, and I ended up switching over to videos or the music channel for the last bit. It was nice to change things up from the daytime and primetime standbys.

Wednesday:
treadmill | 6 miles | 56:00 | 9:20/mi.

Thursday:
treadmill | 5 miles | 46:28 | 9:18/mi.
walk CD | 0.29 miles | 5:00

Crappy long run

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Sometimes I wonder if I'm kidding myself about being able to be a marathon runner. Since May, it seems my body is rebelling against the distance and I just don't get it. Being a distance runner is something I've taken pride in being a part of my identity. I love when people find out I run how they then ask if I've ever thought about a marathon and I get to say that I've done more than one. It makes me really sad and frustrated to think about giving that up.

Thanks for the comments on the race and my leg, everyone. I wish that the stupid leg problem didn't overshadow Saturday (in my mind at least) because the race was pretty great. I'm pretty pleased with my race - and how can I not be happy with being only 12 seconds away from my PR? Especially when I've said many times how happy it would make me to come close to and/or break my high school PRs? And even though I think the 3rd mile marker was slightly misplaced, I hit that point in the 21s - which means I probably would've broken 22 for 5k. That's a minute faster than what I ran in March and faster than what the calculators predict based on my 20K (which I think was a good measure of my racing fitness).

But this leg issue ... it's getting old and frustrating. While I'm sure some of my choices since the marathon have caused the reoccurrences, I really can't figure out exactly what caused the problem in the first place. Looking through my archives, I did come across something interesting. In my report/recap of the 20K, I noted that I'd had something funky going on with my left calf but that it hadn't interfered with the race. Maybe there's a connection? But I still don't understand why, since I don't see any obvious flaws with my training (too sharp of mileage increases, lack of rest days, etc). I did get names of 2 doctors at the Clinic, and will try to call tomorrow to see if either of them can see me sometime soon.

But in the meantime, I've made at least one decision with regards to my running: I need to cross TCM off my "to do list." I was talking about things with the Engineer a few weeks ago, and I said that I have felt a lot of pressure (from myself) to get back on track because I'm supposed to be running a marathon in October. On Sunday, I was telling him about how I could probably still "do" the marathon, but he said he'd rather us just eat the entry fee vs. spending the money for the hotel and risking me get hurt more/again. Which got me thinking about maybe I should just write it off now as I think I'd be having a lot easier time accepting this lower mileage/training load if I were able to focus on just healing, and not getting ready for a marathon. So while I really hate basically giving them another $80, I need to not have this "deadline" hanging over me. (And as a sidenote: the only way I will be doing TCM in the future is if I get a free entry because I refuse to give them yet another $80 without me getting anything in return because I'm injured/unable to run).

So I think that my plan for now is to not worry about running a marathon this fall, and just work on rebuilding my endurance and avoiding injury. I did run 3 miles today and it didn't hurt, which was good. Hopefully having less pressure on myself will help get me out of this "funk" I've been in since the marathon. Overall, I really haven't felt like myself when it comes to running and it's kind of sucked. I felt like before the marathon, I'd gotten to a really good spot and now I've got to get back to there. I don't doubt that I can, it's just frustrating to have to re-build.

Sunday:
2.78 miles | 25:43 | 9:15/mi.
walk home | 0.68 miles | 9:59 | 14:42/mi.

Monday:
inactive rest, leg sore, lots of standing at work

Tuesday:
3.07 miles | 27:48 | 9:03/mi.

I Give Up

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Subject about says it all. My left leg hates me, and I hate it.

Back on the trail ...

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I went out to run on the bike path today. The annoying thing was that I had to stop at the gas station first - my car was pretty close to empty and one of my tires was really low on air. I would've stopped at the gas station after work last night, but I didn't have my credit cards with me or my phone so I could call the Engineer. So I had to go this morning, which added a bunch of time to my trip out to the park. The bad thing about that was that it was then close to 10 AM when I actually got running.

My legs felt fine, and I didn't have any pain problems (or warnings that it was going to happen again). I ran on the right side of the bike path, so my right leg was the "lower leg" in the areas where the path is slanted. The odd thing is that I felt like I was running much faster than I actually was. Not that it was hard, just that my pace should've been faster than what it actually was. I don't know if that's because it was my first run in 8 days, or because of the heat/humidity (I've been working out in the air conditioned basement, so I haven't been dealing with outside conditions lately). Not a huge deal, and not something I'm worried about, just something I noticed and thought was kind of weird.

low 70s | wind 12 MPH | ~80% humidity
3.05 miles | 28:40 | 9:24/mi.

weights | upper body | 30:00