Thursday, October 29, 2015

October 29

I can happily say that thanks to the chiro and massage therapist my PF was almost 100% pain free when I got up this morning. What a strange, but welcome feeling and I couldn't wait to get my run on.

Even though I am chomping at the bit to build my miles back up, the plan was to do between four and a half to 5 miles tonight. After all, the last thing I want is to get injured again. I'm done with this not running thing. So on a beautiful night in the high 60s I hit the road as the sun was setting.

My HR was a bit on the high side all day, probably due to some of the junk I've been eating so I knew it would be a challenge to keep it under 140 bpm. I felt good after a day off and my focus was on form. Now that I have my RunScribe, I can see that my right leg is lagging while my left is braking too much; I need to get them working together. This will come with time.

I have to say that I love this cooler weather and running in the dark is sort of welcome especially now that I have my brighter Run-Bright lights. I just wish other runners would light up. Out of the 3 people I saw out, all were running with nothing reflective let alone lights. Why do people do this?

I was still doing alright when I got to a turnaround point and while I considered going a bit further to my 5 mile turn, I decided to head back and not press for glory tonight. My calves were beginning to tighten up so I decided to listen to them.

Tonight's run wasn't the fastest, but it was the most consistent so I'll take it and at 4.7 miles, it was also the longest. I just need to keep taking those baby steps. The key will be how good I feel tomorrow with a day off before I try to push a bit further with 5-6 miles on Saturday. Right now I'm playing it by feel and letting my body dictate the time/miles.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

October 27

It's late so this will be short. Not that this is a bad thing since the same can be said for my runs as I work my way back.

Now you may be asking yourself, what's with the rolling pin? Well the Nurse Practitioner at my Chiro's office recommended getting one to roll out my calves. He said they are cheaper and easier to work with than a stick and for $6 he was right. It works like a charm.

After rolling out last night I felt great today And really was hoping that I could push the distance a little. I know I can't make up for lost miles but I really want some endurance back. It was quite nice, in the low 80s, as the sun was setting but that wasn't a worry since I had my Run-Bright light and flashing arm band to help me be safe and be seen while out on the road.

Run-Bright  LED Light & Reflective Belt and flashing armband
The first couple miles felt great but shortly after passing the 2 mile mark I could sense that my legs were going away a bit. This was probably for the better because it made me turn toward home instead of trying to go further.

By the time I hit the 3 mile mark, my calves started to let me know they were there as did the PF although it was relatively light.When I got to 4 I was glad I had made the turn when I did and concluded with 4.2 miles in the books. I was happy with it and it was longer than I had been going so I'll look at it as a win. Tomorrow will be a rest day and back to the Chiro for more therapy.

Speaking of the Chiro, Christine had to head over today. She hurt something a couple of weekends ago and even though she hadn't ran since her foot swelled up today. This was unexpected since she thought it was getting better and it looks like it may be a stress fracture. She'll know in a couple days after she gets it X-Rayed. Poor kid she was so looking forward to the 5K on Sunday too. But such is the life of a runner.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

October 25

Recovery is never a straight ling, that is for sure. I had been feeling pretty good after a couple runs and even though I had some discomfort on Wednesday, the PF was feeling ok. After I went to the Chiro later on it was a different story. My foot wasn't happy with the treatment and between that and a business trip I decided to take some extra rest. I was going to be on my feet most of Thursday, Friday and Saturday anyway so that would be enough. Initially I was not planning on running today but I felt real good and since I was going to be home early enough, I decided a run was in order.

By the time I was home and was ready run it was almost noon and temps were creeping into the low 80s with a stiff wind from the east. This all was probably a good thing because I was initially tempted to go for 5 miles which would have been a colossal mistake. Wisely I settled on doing 3 miles instead.

I took it easy on the first mile and was feeling good while keeping my HR below 140 bpm for the most part.The hard was when I turned into the headwind just before I hit the first split and for the next mile, I had to work for it. The wind was gusty and I had to struggle to keep my HR down. This made for a harder run and I could tell it was affecting my form as well; I kept catching myself bending into the wind which was throwing things off as the RunScribe data would later show.

I was never so happy to make the turn south to have the crosswind and the last mile went a lot smother without having to deal with the wind. That said, my calves were really tight and is the root cause of my PF. In the end I was just glad I opted for 3 over 5.

So there's another run in the books which I followed up with a nice foam roller session. If all feels good I'll be back at it on Tuesday.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

October 20

So happy to have survived to run another day. After Sunday's run I really didn't know what to expect and I'm happy to report that all is well. Aside from some stiffness, there were no DOMS, no aches and even the PF felt pretty good. There's still a bit of tenderness in the foot but my chiro and massage therapist were pleased with the progress after only 1 treatment which means I got to run again tonight.

Since I want to ease back slowly it was going to be another short 3.4 mile run at 140 bpm. There is just no way I'm to attempt to make up for lost time; better to take it slow after the layoff. I also have to say that I'm loving these cooler temps and low 70s with cloud cover as the sun is going down is alright with me.

After getting stretched out I was on the road and after an half mile warmup I settled into a nice 10 minute pace. I was able to keep my HR in check a little better tonight although I still exceeded the 140 mark too many times. This will get better with a couple more runs under my belt.

Unlike Sunday, where I ran out of gas when I hit the headwind, tonight was calm and I felt stronger through mile 2, into mile 3. It may only be baby steps but we all know how important they are. It shouldn't take many more before I'm fully back but that's up to my body to decide.

What also made me happy about this run was that because I focused more on my landing, turnover and overall stride, I was able to lessen some of the imbalances between my left and right feet which was readily apparent in my RunScribe data. It's going to be so helpful to quantify whether subtle changes are working or not which my inner stat geek loves.

Well there it is, another successful run in the books. Tomorrow it will be back to the chiro before a business trip which will limit me to the hotel dreadmill but that's ok; a run on the DM is better than no run at all.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

October 18

A great man once said "That's all I can stands, I can't stands no more!" and that's how I feel when it comes to no running for 5 weeks.

While the upper body and core work has been great, I finally broke down and saw a Chiropractor that specializes in ART to help accelerate the healing. I couldn't believe how much better I felt after just one treatment as it put me over the hump that I had been stuck on for the last couple of weeks. I may not be 100% yet but I'm close enough that I felt comfortable in getting back out on the road.

Initially I was planning on doing a MAF test but came to the realization that I shouldn't put in the miles required this early on and settled on doing somewhere around 3 miles to gauge where my fitness is at first. I was planning on getting out around 8 but when I was going through my warmup I remembered that I had recently received my RunScribe devices and needed to get them set up. Unfortunately it didn't go very smoothly and what should have taken on a few minutes took over an hour. Soon I got my issues resolved and was on my way. 

It was a beautiful but windy morning with temps in the 70s; finally the blazing heat of the summer is gone and none too soon. It was also a bit on the humid side as we are in a rainy pattern but I can live with that as well.

My goal for the run was to do a half mile warmup and cool down with the remaining miles under 140BPM. It's not quite Maffetone Method but I want to experiment a bit more in this new cycle.

For the first mile and a half I felt great and was managing a pace in the mid-9s to mid-10s with the aid of a nice tailwind. This feeling of confidence would not last for long because once I hit the turn, between the wind in my face and fatigue from the layoff, I slowed down significantly. This wasn't the best feeling in the world but it was something I was expecting so it didn't come as a surprise.

In the end, I got in 3.4 miles in just over 39 minutes which also included some walking at the start and at the finish. In all I was quite happy with the effort and just glad to be able to run again. There was no issue with the PF either, although it did make me aware of its existence toward the end. I'm back to the chiro tomorrow so we'll see what he has to say.

It was also cool to have the RunScribe and geek out over the metrics. I'm so glad I got the 2 pods to have left and right data as well. I've always been able to feel that I was out of balance but now I can quantify it. Surprisingly, if I'm interpreting it correctly it is my left leg that is weak where I always thought it was my right. I'll know better after I get some more runs under my belt.

So I'm hopefully back for good and I'd like to thank everyone of you for the support, encouragement and well wishes. I can't put into words how much I appreciate it; just know that I do. I can't wait to get back out there on Tuesday night and you can be sure that I'll be wearing my new Run-Bright lights.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

October 3

Have you missed me?

It's been a while since the race, 3 weeks to be exact, and there has been nothing really worth writing about. My hope was to take a couple, three weeks off and then be back on the road. Unfortunately, the PF has had other ideas.

This isn't to say that I've been doing no training at all.

After taking a full week off to recover, I began in on building back up and nothing better than doing some core work. During the last cycle I experimented with no XT and we know how that worked out. One thing I have always noticed from race photos is that my pelvis collapses on foot strike which is undoubtedly the result of poor core strength. So it's been back to the TapOut XT program and some dedicated core work.

I've forgotten how bad it is to get back to into ab specific workouts after some time off. It wasn't too bad the next day but on day 2 I had such a case of DOMS that it was hard to stand up straight and hurt like hell to laugh or cough. At least after a few days I was recovered and back at it.

That's one part of the plan. I've also decided to sign up at a gym near work and get some lap swimming in a few day a week before work for a month or 2 in an effort to build upper body strength.

That said, I was hoping that I would only need 2-3 weeks off before I could run again but that is not in the cards. I was thinking that between the rest, foot skrunchies, rolling and stretching that the PF was getting  better but in the last few days it's been feeling sore. I'm wondering if the 1 footed stands at my desk on the cube farm are aggravating it.

So that's where I'm at right now. As it looks, it will probably be another 2 weeks before I'm running again. Part of me is enjoying the whole not running thing but the other part of me is chomping at the bit to get back on the road. Plus I'm so envious of all the great runs I'm reading about, while I'm sidelined, now that the cooler weather is here.

Still, I'm not going to rush it back this time. I made that mistake when I came back too soon in March and I'm not going to do that again. With my next swing at a BQ in late February, I have plenty of time to heal and begin running. Plus that is just more time that I can use to get stronger elsewhere.

Until next time.