The past two weeks have been a little bit of travel, a little bit of recovery, and a lot bit of discovering my current fitness, accepting my current fitness, and still attempting to sort out how I can fit everything in. I hate reading lengthy posts and I’m often guilty of writing a lot, so hopefully combining two weeks isn’t too dreadful.
Week 6/12 was a cut back week from 18 miles to 13 miles. While I cut back mileage, I did not cut back intensity – in fact, I increased it. And I certainly felt it. I took completely off Monday through Wednesday to spend time with J before heading out to Hollie’s wedding and also to clean my entire apartment. I don’t know about anybody else, but I hate coming back to a dirty house after vacation.
On Thursday, I left for Virginia with Heather and Laura, but not before a short run at home. Unfortunately, my run was full of wheeze. I got two measly miles in. As soon as I got home, I scheduled an appointment for my doctor since renewing my prescriptions is obviously needed. At my last visit (two years ago, oops), she suggested I try to wean myself off using the corticosteroid I am currently on – well, I’ve definitely tried and it definitely is not working.
We spent the night in Delaware and woke up early on Friday to get a workout in before finishing the drive. I was nervous to push myself due to the wheezing and potential of racing a 5k on Saturday, given I have never run three days in a row since my injury! I ran just three easy miles and found myself exhausted after a short sprint across the street at one point. It was not looking promising for that 5k!
After spending Friday doing wedding related things, and yes, signing up for that Dismal Swamp Stomp 5k, Saturday came all too quick. Including my warm-ups and cool-downs (a new experience to my race day), I ran over 7 miles. My right posterior tibialis was sore after just the warm-up and I could tell that three days in a row of running isn’t something I’m ready for, just yet. I did finish uninjured and took the time to ice at the parties we had throughout the day, but it was a mental note to take away for the future.
Sunday was the Big Official Day: Hollie’s wedding! I’m going to call this day cross training – all. freaking. day. There was a lot of walking (hello, coffee!), a lot of giggling (“you had one job!”), and a lot of dancing (“you shook me all night long!”). I’m smiling and exhausted thinking about it all over again.
I don’t know how anyone else feels, but sometimes, weddings can be really awkward. You sit with people you don’t know, you make small talk, and then you never see or talk to these people again (usually after you leave your table for the first dance!) Then usually the music plays and it takes a few drinks before people get up to dance and the only way they stay on the floor (myself included) is with more than a few strong cocktails. Her wedding was everything but that! I met people that I knew of from the internet (creeper status!) that instantly became good friends who I talked to all night, I met people I didn’t know existed who are now Facebook friends because when they pass through Buffalo, I want to meet up with them for more conversations over drinks (did I mention they are probably 3x my age?), and I danced non-stop like a fool without having any drinks after dinner for the most part. I’m a little nervous to see the pictures, I’ll admit it, but I had a ton of fun and looking like a fool is the best part.
Despite lower mileage (13 miles including warm-ups and cool-downs), the intensity was much higher than previous weeks. I may not have had a continuous long run, but the 5k and three running days in a row kind of made the whole “cut back” null and void.
This past week, I cut it back entirely. I wanted to push forward with some additional mileage, but it just wasn’t in the cards for me.
Monday was a rest day because we spent it traveling back home. I was in the car from about 7:30am until 9:15pm. Talk about exhausting!
On Tuesday, I had a friend’s wake to attend. While J and I did not stay and I could have gone for a run or to CrossFit possibly, my head just wasn’t in it. I was sad and I was still exhausted from the weekend.
Wednesday, I took off for a quick tempo run. I needed a change of scenery and it was beautiful outside, so I went to Delaware Park. I wanted to focus on my form and thought about doing 5-6 miles, but I struggled hard. When I focus on my form and work on the ankle lean, my pace does not stay slow. I’m not exaggerating when I say that it’s currently impossible to run an easy pace while focusing on these things. After 3 miles, I was done. My mind wasn’t in it to start and I thought that maybe things could sort out after 2-3 miles, but they didn’t.
Finally, we had that dreaded rainy day on Thursday. While I have the gym membership, the thought of going there was not pleasant and I decided to catch up on some TV instead. I’m so easily persuaded to do anything but run, it’s not even funny. After a brief nap, I woke up and it was clear outside and a little sunny and somehow convinced myself to get out. I had an extensive warm-up because I was planning on just doing a glute strength workout, but ran instead. I only ran 1.5 miles because the sun was fading, but I did some drills outside my apartment. I wanted to video myself thinking various cues and find out what I looked like, but that somewhat failed. (Note to self: check the video after the first set, not the last).
Friday I went out for the third run in as many days. After learning that my recovery period last week was relatively brief, I thought I would try it again this week. I originally planned a lengthy run (for me) of about 6-7 miles, but as soon as I started running I knew it wasn’t going to happen. The third day of running in a row is really difficult for my legs. The same area on my right leg was sore again, my left knee felt misaligned, and my hips felt out of whack – in fact, I sat on the ground after about a mile and cracked my back. Things just didn’t feel awesome. I didn’t take any recovery measures during the week as far as foam rolling or compressing so this wasn’t really a surprise to me.
On Saturday, I spent the day moving my Mom and sister into a new apartment. My shins were sore and I could feel the posterior tibialis in both legs aching – I definitely was not feeling great after three days of running. After moving all day, J and I went out for drinks with friends for many April birthdays and to catch the NHL lottery draft. What was “just a couple drinks” turned into 2:30am bed time – I’m too old for this!
I wanted to head out for a run on Sunday, but I could feel my legs were still tight. Instead, I napped (seriously, I’m too old for 2:30am bed times, even if I’m the one driving!), cooked, and spent quality time with my R8.
So, it was a sad 9 miles on my calendar this week. I did a lot of thinking about all of this, paired with my race results last week and I know I’m not anywhere near PR shape for the Buffalo Half in five weeks. That’s okay. I’m struggling to put together consistent mileage with keeping up my energy levels and motivation. That’s okay, too. I have more thoughts about this, but that’s another story for another day!
Coming up this week, I think there will be some treadmill miles due to the weather. I might incorporate some spinning into the nights after running on a treadmill, but that’s mostly just a lot of hope and big dreams. We’ll see what comes of the week, but in all honesty, other than consistency of training, I’m going to be happy with anything.