Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Roadblocks

I'm posting from the elliptical trainer this morning. My days have been quite full so far this week. I added another 8 hrs of class time to my schedule. However busy I am, I have still been able to find time to train. Much to the dismay of my knee.
I took it easy on Saturday so I could save up strength for the six mile run I had planned for Sunday. Sunday was a beautiful, partly sunny day. I had to work in the morning so I didn't get on the road till mid afternoon. It was cold but really good to be outside. I look forward to the days when I can be outside most of the time. You can't even imagine how badly I'm pining for a good bike ride. My knee started bothering me around mile three and by the middle of mile five I had started walking. This was about the time when my run started going down hill, literally. It's always the downhills that bother me. Down hills, down stairs, etc. Sometimes I chose to walk up the stairs, then take the elevator down just to care for my joints. It makes me feel a little old to be saying this.
Needless to say, a round of ice, and a hot bath was in my future.
My mom, and personal marathon guru, told me it will be necessary for ice to become my best friend throughout my training. I take any advice from her very seriously because not only has she been running since high school and runs from 5-100 miles on any given day; she has also been doing physical therapy, sports medicine for over twenty years. On Monday, I invested in some Dixie cups to freeze large cubes of ice for ice massages. Mom says direct ice is best. For anyone who has never had an ice massage, it hurts. It was hard to inflict pain upon myself like that but it is a necessary evil if I want to prevent future pain and injury.
Monday was my off day so I rested and recovered with an easy ride on the stationary bike followed by 45 minutes of lap swimming. I used to swim quite a bit when I was younger, but now I'm hardly ever in the pool. I did six sets of 200m free with 200m kicking in the middle. At the end of the day, I was noticing a big difference in the overall fatigue I was experiencing last week. I took this as a good sign of progress. Yesss!!
Yesterday was a different story. I had planned a 3 mile run outside between classes down the Starkweather Creek bike path leading away from MATC. It was somewhere around 40 out with no precipitation. Seemed almost perfect. Then I started to run...
My legs did not want to cooperate yesterday at all. By mile 2 I was experiencing shooting pains in my left knee. Every time I started to run it was like my knee was saying, " no, no, No, NO, NO! NOOOO!!!" My discomfort seemed to increase with every stride. I ended up walking the last mile and a half. When I came back to campus, someone from the athletic department gave my a delightful bag of ice. In addition to the knee, my ankles and lower calves were giving me trouble. It was then I committed to a low- impact workout today. Yesterday, I invested in a dish tub, just big enough to rest my feet in, and half bag of ice so I could soak my feet. Oh boy, was that horrible! My feet hurt more in the ice than they did before! I wussed out in under a minute. I couldn't hack it. I ended up just cooling my heels, literally. I rested my toes on the lip of the tub while my heels sank gradually deeper into the icy water. It still hurt, but it was a lot easier to take when one half my foot was still warm. One of these days, I'll be able to handle it. Hopefully.
My easy 40 minutes on the elliptical today wasn't too bad. The knee is still sore, but I feel a measurable amount of confidence in my ability to stick with my workout despite the necessary modifications.
Tomorrow I may have to stick with the low-impact, but I won't be skipping my workout.

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