Injured Runner Alert

Something has been up with my left heel for a while now. It first started hurting immediately after the VCM relay Memorial Day weekend, and I took a full week off to try to let it heal (no pun intended). I started running again and for a time, it didn’t hurt while I was running, only while walking around after, so I was able to convince myself that running wasn’t the problem.

In the lead up to Vera’s birthday, and then our family reunion and vacation, I took more time off running. I was busy, and my foot was still hurting, so it seemed like a good time to take a step back and hope that rest would take care of things.

As you probably saw on IG recently, three full weeks of no running later I still have foot pain. I went for a two mile test run this past Friday morning and spent the rest of the day limping. I honestly have no real idea what it could be. I don’t think it’s PF, because the pain doesn’t ease as my foot “warms up.” Maybe a stress fracture? Maybe Achilles issues? The pain sometimes radiates up the back of my leg a bit. Who knows?

I have been resistant to see a doctor up until now because when I had my last foot injury in 2014, I paid to have x-rays done and then never got any concrete diagnosis. I took six full weeks of rest and my foot was fine after that. But based on what’s going on currently, I definitely need to suck it up and go see someone. Thankfully, my GP is also a runner, so I’m hopeful that she will work with me to find some real answers this time around. I’m planning to call my doctor’s office today and hope to be seen some time this week.

In the meantime, no running, all the supportive shoes, and some low-impact strength workouts to keep me sane.

You Don’t Have To

Dear runner friends:

On this Global Running Day, I’d like to give you all a little reminder.

You don’t have to…

…run “fast”…
…run long distances…
…run races…
…use a GPS watch/app…
…keep track of your mileage/pace/PRs…
…post your runs on social media…
…own lots of fancy gear…
…eat special food…
…know all the lingo (fartlek? tempo? VO2 max???)…
…be a brand ambassador or influencer…
…look like a “runner”…
…read the books, follow the blogs, watch the movies…
…do anything except RUN…

…to be a runner.

Whether you ran today or not, if you run, you are a runner. Never forget it.

A Great Race and An Injury

This past Sunday, I ran leg 5 of the Vermont City Marathon Relay. I had a pretty damn good race. I felt really good the entire time, and ran a great overall pace. I actually had to rein myself in a few times when I looked at my Garmin and saw some faster-than-was-probably-wise paces. And when I finished, I felt fired up. Excited. Ready to maybe run some goal races later this year and really see what my postpartum body is capable of. And then after I got home and got showered and started to come down off my high, my left heel started to hurt. A lot.

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Since then, it has become apparent that I’ve definitely injured myself. What exactly is wrong is a mystery. I can’t tell if it’s muscular or skeletal. I’ve been massaging and rolling the crap out of my calf in case it’s some kind of muscular thing that started further up the chain, but I don’t want to risk aggravating a potential bone issue by rolling my foot too aggressively.

I’ve been obsessing over what happened. I did a lot of things “wrong” on Sunday. Was it my new shoes, which I’d only worn on one test run prior to race day? Was it standing around for several hours, waiting for my turn to run? Was it failing to cool down and stretch out after the race? Was it because I stayed in my running shoes when normally I’d switch to my Birkenstocks post-race? There’s no way to know, and wondering will only drive me crazy, but I can’t help it.

I’m just so disappointed. After Sunday’s race, I really started to feel like pre-baby me. I ran hard and fast and it felt SO GOOD. I was so excited to start really pushing myself again. And now I’m stuck on the DL.

I suppose I could go to the doctor and get my foot looked at, but honestly, I’ve been down that road before. X-rays are expensive and not always conclusive, and I have neither the time nor money to invest in that. So all I can do now is rest. Which I am not good at. Especially when the weather is so beautiful right now and all I want to do is run. Even walking hurts, which means stroller walks with Vera are out, as are a lot of lower body exercises.

I’m trying very hard not to have a pity party, but it’s hard. The fact that this injury coincides with my first real taste of running fire since before I got pregnant is tough. I’m hoping to stay active as much as I can, with yoga and core work and whatever else doesn’t hurt my foot. And also try not to drown my sorrows in poor food choices, as I am wont to do.

What’s your favorite distraction for when you can’t run?

Manic Monday Training Recap – 05/27/19

Manic Monday

Training For VCM Relay: May 26, 2019
What Was Planned vs What Happened

Monday 05/20/19: 3 mile run | 3 mile run + stretching
I zipped out for three rather speedy miles when Ben got home from work. It was quite windy, but sunny and warm.

Tuesday 05/21/19: Yoga | Rest
I had a last-minute doctor appointment for what I thought was a tick bite (it wasn’t, yay!), and since my doctor is an hour drive each way that pretty much shot the day in the foot. But I did stop at Fleet Feet for running fuel… and walked out with a new pair of Altras!

Wednesday 05/22/19: Speed Work | 5 x 400 (3.25 miles total)
I NEEDED this run. Vera is teething and has been super clingy and sad, and I needed me time. I also hit some really great paces, which made me feel so great!

Thursday 05/23/19: Strength | Strength
I put my new, custom made plyo box to work and did a CrossFit inspired workout. 5 rounds each of 10 x box step ups, 10 x thrusters, weighted carry, 10 x dumb bell snatches and 10 x wood choppers. I did a 2 minute plank finisher as well. I miss CrossFit so much!

Friday 05/24/19: 4 mile run | Rest
My folks decided to come up for a last-minute visit, so I had to run around cleaning my festering pit of a house before they arrived. They brought lunch and wine, and by the time they left I was too full to run.

Saturday 05/25/19: Rest | Active Rest
I mowed the lawn and did some stuff around the house, but otherwise kept it easy.

Sunday 05/26/19: VMC Relay | Leg 5 of VCM Relay (5.44 miles)
I felt great the whole time, and kept a great pace!

Weekly Mileage: 11.69

Total 2019 Mileage: 191.79

A pretty good week and a great race! I was riding high yesterday, feeling bulletproof and dreaming about fast summer running. But as the day went on, my left heel started hurting. I did a bunch of rolling and stretching but I woke up limping today. BOOOOO. I’ll write more later this week (does anybody care about a race recap?), but for now, I’m wearing my most supportive shoes at all times and taking it easy. On the docket for today: Memorial Day BBQ.

Have you ever had a great race and then had a mysterious injury afterwards? This is the second time I’ve ended up with a hurt foot after a race even though nothing hurt during…

Race Week

Hey there. I disappeared again for a while. Oops. Life with an almost 11 month old is tough. You’re supposed to keep them on a strict schedule, so I say no to anything that might take us away from home during nap time, and then the kid doesn’t nap. She’s sleeping through the night now, but wakes up ready to rock every day before 6 am. I’m slowly starting to dig out of my ridiculous sleep deficit, but my days are now a lot busier with an active almost-toddler, so I’m still pretty tired, and blogging just hasn’t felt like a priority.

That being said, I’ve missed it. I’ll never be a famous blogger with lots of viewers and sponsors, but this is basically my journal, and I love using my blog posts as a way to look back and remember things. So here I am.

OK. So. It’s race week; the Vermont City Marathon and Relay is on Sunday. In a last-minute switcheroo, I will be running the final leg and actually get to cross the finish line, which I’m quite happy about. It’s a 5.5 mile leg with no big hills, which is what I’m trained for. I did a 6 mile long run this past weekend, and other than some stomach troubles, it felt great.

Logistically speaking, Sunday morning is going to be a bit challenging. We live almost an hour from Burlington, and with a race start time of 7 am, we’re going to have to be up and on the road pretty early. Ben is supposed to run a leg of the relay as well, but he’s had some foot pain this week and is currently undecided on whether or not he’s running. If he is, that means we need someone to watch Vera. I’m thinking we may end up sleeping at my in-laws house Saturday night so I can nurse Vera and then leave her with Grammy and Pop while we run.

All in all, I’m really excited and feel quite prepared. After my crappy experience trying to run the full marathon in 2016, it will feel like a bit of redemption to cross that finish line on Sunday, even if I’m only running a leg of the relay. I still don’t know that another marathon attempt will ever be in my future, but at least I can wash the taste of failure out of my mouth a bit.

Will any of my friends be in Burlington this weekend? Who wants to meet up?

Manic Monday Training Recap – 04/15/19

Manic Monday

Training For: McClure Miller Respite House Jiggety Jog 5k
What Was Planned vs What Happened

Monday 04/08/19: 3 mile run | 3 mile run + hip strength + stretching
I was a little tired and a little sore, but I NEEDED this run. Vera hasn’t been napping well during the day OR sleeping well at night, and I desperately needed some time to myself.

Tuesday 04/09/19: Yoga | Rest
I had my annual physical in the morning, which meant driving and babysitters and a funky nap schedule for Vera, so I wasn’t able to manage a workout.

Wednesday 04/10/19: 4 mile run | 3 mile run + hip strength + stretch/roll
I warmed up for half a mile, then did 5 x 400 with 400 recoveries. It felt good to work hard.

Thursday 04/11/19: Strength | 10 minutes core
We got a last-minute invitation for a playdate with some of Vera’s friends, but I still managed to squeeze in a quick core workout during her morning nap.

Friday 04/12/19: 3 mile run | 3 mile run
I had a rough night getting up with Vera several times and was pretty tired, but I needed the alone time.

Saturday 04/13/19: 5 mile run | Rest
It was a gorgeous day, but I had tickets to go see a show, so I took a rest day.

Sunday 04/14/19: Rest | 4 miles
Hooray for outdoor running! This run contained my fastest post-baby mile and my fastest post-baby 5k, which felt wonderful.

Weekly Mileage: 13

Total 2019 Mileage: 127.25

Woohoo, that was a pretty good week! I’m really happy to be getting outside a bit more now, as my 5k is coming up pretty quickly. At this point, my goal is to hit a sub-30. This was once the norm for me, but I haven’t hit those paces in close to two years, so I’m trying to keep my expectations in check. For now, it’s just great to be running and feeling good.

Have you been getting outside for your runs, or are you stuck on the treadmill like me?

Manic Monday Training Recap – 03/18/19

Manic Monday

What Was Planned vs What Happened

Monday 03/11/19: 3 mile run | 3 mile run
It feels good to regularly be running three miles again. What was once my bare minimum mileage is now a decent challenge.

Tuesday 03/12/19: Yoga | 45 minutes yoga
Penelope and I did Yoga With Adriene’s “Yoga For Strength and Focus” video, which was quite nice. Of course, doing yoga with a crawling baby is a whole new ball game, but we made it work.

Wednesday 03/13/19: 3 mile run | 3 mile run
I didn’t really feel like it, but I’m trying SO HARD to be consistent and get back to running regularly. I ended up doing it, and I’m glad I did.

Thursday 03/14/19: Strength | Rest
I was tired and had a bunch of errands to run, so a workout didn’t happen.

Friday 03/15/19: 3 mile run | 3 mile run + stretching + rolling
Another three miles! I’m getting tired of treadmill runs, but treadmill runs are better than no runs.

Saturday 03/16/19: 4 mile run | Rest
My right hip was bothering me a bit, so I decided to rest.

Sunday 03/17/19: Rest | 4 miles
I wasn’t planning to run, but I ended up in a really crappy mood Sunday evening, so I escaped to the treadmill after putting Vera to bed, and ended up feeling a lot better for it.

Weekly Mileage: 13

Total 2019 Mileage: 85.75

Well, this is the highest mileage week I’ve had since before I got pregnant, and Sunday’s run was my longest run since before I got pregnant. It feels SO GOOD to be getting back to “normal.” I still have work to do, but I’m excited to do it.

Are you a morning runner or an evening runner?