Changing Course

I haven’t gotten a chance to blog recently because, well, I haven’t gotten a chance to run. If you have followed my training for the Minneapolis Marathon, you’ll know that I’ve been dealing with some sort of mysterious injury and it literally will not go away. I don’t know what it is, but it’s on my left side and my knee sometimes hurts but lately the pain is manifested in my lower calf right around near my ankle on the inside of my leg. My IT band feels tight as well and sometimes I’ll get a twinge in my lower back. So my guess is that it’s a lot of things, and I’m running through the regimen of strength-training and balance work to get right again, but it won’t be long before I consult a physical therapist.

Here are my theories on what is causing my injury: Continue reading “Changing Course”

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Minneapolis Marathon Training: Week Nine

Last week was sobering. Work was hell. I’m still riding the emotional waves of living a life on pause and some days are much harder to get through than others. I have an injury that feels like one I had back in 2012 where my hip adducters, glutes, and IT band had basically frozen into a state of immobility that benched me from running the 2012 Des Moines Marathon and threatened my training for the 2013 Goofy Challenge. I don’t take it as a coincidence that my dead leg feeling has not worn off for weeks, that running speeds I used to run with total ease are hard as hell now. Going through physical therapy eventually led me to run at faster speeds than I ever had run before, but with my next race now in less than a month, it wasn’t the time to be benched. Continue reading “Minneapolis Marathon Training: Week Nine”

Minneapolis Marathon Training: Week Eight

Last week’s training had its ups and downs. Literally. It seemed that one run was better than the other all week long. I start every single week thinking I’m going to be this hardcore, take-no prisoners runner, but then I realize that I’m just….well, I’m me. I’m surfing a lot of waves right now with a job that I don’t love, being in a place that I feel I outgrew a long time ago, and just generally wondering where my life is going and what I will do next. Running is my constant between all of those things, but I tend to wrap it up in the same tarp as everything else and that’s when I have more off days than I should. I get frustrated with the wind and take it as another setback, I get demoralized with running slow paces even though I know they are serving a physiological purpose, and I don’t give myself enough of a break to say, “I’m awesome. I got it done,” and instead let everything sink in and make me feel like I am inadequate. Continue reading “Minneapolis Marathon Training: Week Eight”

Minneapolis Marathon Training: Week Seven

Monday: Rest. I hate letting bad runs defeat me because it means that I am taking things way too seriously. But Sunday’s 13-miler was awful and left me feeling incredibly demoralized. All I could think about was, “My last half-marathon, I ran the whole thing nearly 3 minutes per mile faster than I just ran this one.” And with a half-marathon coming up in less than 6 weeks, all I could think about was that I was on course to fail. At something I put countless hours toward. I needed a day to regroup. Continue reading “Minneapolis Marathon Training: Week Seven”

Minneapolis Marathon Training: Week Five

This week, I knew I would be seeing the biggest challenge to my training yet: training while traveling. I have one of those jobs that requires me to travel frequently during the week and this week’s business took me to Columbus, Ohio. My planned trip would include a day of traveling on Tuesday, all-day on Wednesday, and traveling home Thursday after meetings. I knew this week would require some careful planning to be successful. Continue reading “Minneapolis Marathon Training: Week Five”

Minneapolis Marathon Training: Week Four

Three frosty miles at twilight. Winter running can be beautiful!
Three frosty miles at twilight. Winter running can be beautiful!

Monday: 3 miles at a 9:39 average pace. Despite the pace of my run on Monday not being anywhere close to what I want– or feel I should be at– I still had a great run after work on Monday. The weather was in the teens and the wind in my face stung bitterly. I had on three layers– a short-sleeve shirt over a long sleeve shirt with a jacket, all moisture-wicking of course, so I was warm enough, but all I could think about was, “Please God, don’t let my face freeze this way!” I ran a new course near my home and found a path to a new trail– score! But the sidewalks were still icy in some places and I twisted my left ankle twice going over some rough terrain. Continue reading “Minneapolis Marathon Training: Week Four”