Monday, January 9, 2012

The Stems (Week 6 Training Recap)

Anyone who thinks that Clueless is a movie of genius will get my blog title..... 

I’m in a funk and I blame my left "stem", ahem, shin. It is a testament to my clueless newbie runner status that I have gone so long in ignorance of the limitations of my body. To date, the only limitation I’ve been aware of is my “jiggles”. But I figured as long as I could get over my own issues related to my remaining weight (and loose skin) that whatever? Who cares?

Clueless no more. I’ve learned this weekend what it means to have a will that is stronger than the body. Granted, it wasn’t any single run. It has been coming. If I am honest with myself, I’ve felt it in my body for the past couple of weeks.  Prior to the New Years Day Dash, I had 7 days of severe fatigue in my legs. I was tired. I slogged thru my runs, a slave to my training. I logged the miles and berated myself for feeling so tired. I chalked it up to the holiday diet and not giving myself good fuel for my runs.

After the high of the New Years Day Dash, my will was stronger than ever. Tackling 2012. Registering for my half marathon and signing up with Tough Chik. I can totally do this! I’m taking the opportunity to sign up and show up.

I worked the gym into my routine. I tried longer runs on the treadmill. I worked my new shoes into rotation on my shorter runs. I had some new aches and pains, but nothing as bad as some of the Achilles pains I had in the summer of 2010 when building up my base mileage.  

So I headed out for my 10 miles on Friday full of toughness. I’m pushing. I’m heading up the biggest hill from my house and up the rolling hills on the aptly named, “High Point Rd.” Dude, I got this. 5 miles out I questioned my good sense, but having reached the half way point, I wondered if I should consider another route home. Falling back on the old, “the devil you now is better than the one you don’t” mentality, I headed back down “high point”.

Friday nite. I am physically exhausted. At 9pm I dragged my butt off the couch and into bed. Feeling total and utter physical exhaustion is a new feeling so I just submitted. I rested on Saturday and realized that despite the fashion consequences, I was living in my old sneakers that day cause walking without cushioning didn’t seem like a viable option. 24 hours out from my run and my legs still hadn’t forgiven me. By 36 hours, I finally said to Erik, “Ok, the muscle fatigue is gone.”

But the shin pain in my left leg is not gone. It only hits me when I stand, walk or twist in a certain way. A stabbing pain. It isn’t soreness, it is a pain. I’ve tried not to do the crazy web-searching-self-diagnosing, but it is looking like tendonitis, commonly referred to as “shin splints”. I’m telling myself that it isn’t so bad. To get stronger, you have to push thru the pain, right? So, Sunday afternoon I head out for a short easy run. 3-4 miles was my hope.

I got thru it. Felt ok until I tried to push my stride a bit (just to see what would happen). Pain. I’m feeling it again last nite after that short run.

I’m supposed to do an easy 3 miles today. I’m going to skip it. I’ve done some stretching / strength training this morning and I’m going to go to my first spinning class tonight. That is enough for today.

I get it now. I get why my personal running guru BWB keeps telling me to keep at it, as long as I’m healthy, he always adds. I couldn’t go forever without pain. I’ve got to deal with the body that I’ve got. The body that is still forgiving me for the garbage that I’ve done to it for the past 34 years. Thankfully, it has been pretty gracious to me. I’ll take some shin pain if that is what I need to remind me how far I’ve come. 

Week 6
Miles: 23.89
Time: 5:06:39
Speed: 4.7
Calories: 3,588
Weight:  - 3 lbs but still feeling the holidays...

Since I am Clueless about my new pain,  I’d love some advice from been there, done that, runners. I’m wondering about everything from ice baths to compression socks. Do tell!

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