July 28, 2008
box full of bones
This morning I visited my friend's pool for a bit of reduced-gravity running. I brought the mp3 player/mini speakers I'd bought for my wildly imploding massage business, and was pleasantly surprised that at the volume and quality. As Robyn Hitchcock & The Egyptians' "Heaven" blared from the 2" speakers, I strapped on the aqua-jogger and lowered myself into the warm water, feeling a bit like Olivia Newton-John. All I needed was a pair of leg-warmers.
I wanted to approximate the scheduled road workout (4 easy, 3@7:15). Of course I can't begin to guess pace in a pool, so I decided on 34min easy, then 22min hard, which is about as accurate as I could get using an analog clock. All went fairly well, except the random function on the mp3 player was sometimes anything but (for some reason Donner Party's "Box Full of Bones" played 3 times in a row, right at the start of the fast running, and it's not a particularly good song for faster running). I never listen to music while running, so maybe this is something everyone has to put up with. Anyway, I don't think my heart rate ever got really high, but my legs felt like jello when I was done, so I guess it was good for something.
I spent the rest of the day doing chores and errands: dentistry, laundry, dog rehab. I also got a really vicious massage from someone I work with. And asked myself, all day long: does my leg hurt? More? Less? Worse? I don't know. I mean, I think it might feel better. But I don't really know. Could I run on it? Pass the hop test? I guess, but I just don't know.
Tomorrow: 1:26 in the pool, approximating 10 easy miles.
July 27, 2008
back on the bike
And back in the pool. I can't deny it any longer. My left leg feels a lot like my right leg did four years ago when I had a stress fracture of the fibula. Four years ago I had much less experience with running injuries, so I ran and ran and ran on it until I couldn't take the pain any longer. Four years ago I also had a regular job and health insurance, so I had a sports doc order xrays and an MRI to confirm what we already suspected.
At the moment I have neither a good job nor insurance, but I do have a little more experience, or at least the sense not to run until my leg falls clean off. I'm going to take the next week off road running and try to do it all (regular runs and workouts) on the bike or in the pool. At this point I'm ok enough with my training and fitness to sacrifice a week to the running-injury gods. Hopefully a week is all they'll require.
July 21, 2008
somehow I knew it couldn't last
sore leg. aaarrrrggggh. It's been bothering me almost 2 weeks, getting a little worse every few days. It doesn't make me limp or alter my gait, but it does hurt some and I am terrified it will become a stress fracture, and when I worry it hurts even more. Saturday I was supposed to run 17 - 10 easy + 7@MP. But I felt that leg every step, and I ended up running only 5 of the 7 MP miles at MP. The fact that I miscalculated and ran almost 2.5 miles extra didn't help any, either.
Yesterday I decided to play it smart and bag the 5mi recovery run entirely. But this morning my leg still hurt, and once again I didn't quite make the planned workout. It was supposed to be 5 easy + 2 in 13:40, but once again the leg was manageably sore throughout the easy miles and I worried about the faster stuff to come. At 5 miles I picked it up, and after a half-mile noticed that the leg no longer hurt (!) but I just couldn't hold the pace. I ended up with 6:59 and 7:05 for the last 2 miles. arrrggggghhhhh.
July 17, 2008
today the clock stopped
Today for the second time we observe the sad anniversary - the day our best friend killed himself, not in the manner of a rockstar but in that of a desperate human being. Like some religious observances this thing lasts two days: the 17th, which is the day he ended his heartache, and the 18th, which is the day we found out and our heartaches began. Today we resolved not to do anything special. No memorial show, no trip to the grave, no luv-ya comment on the myspace page, no black armband. No cocktail. No cigarettes, even. Today I worked a long day and was booked solid, and everybody got great massages because I was not thinking of myself or how I was doing or whether I was effective or too this or not enough that. Instead I was a million miles away, or 35 miles away, on the bridge yelling "look at me!" or in the car driving somewhere to go have a drink or dinner or see a band play, or home cooking dinner for the three of us so we could eat during The Sopranos. I was hardly in the room at all, but I looked at the clock every so often because I was, after all, booked solid and the people needed their massages. Although I was far from bored, time really seemed to drag. One time I saw the second hand actually move backward and I thought I'd lost my mind completely, but then I realized the battery was dying and that's how I managed to lose a half-hour over the course of the morning. I couldn't find another battery so I stole a clock from another room and put the dying clock out to die. Today it rained for like the 5th day in a row. This is very rare for Florida. If it had been raining two years ago, he might not have driven out there. He might have looked at me, or my husband, or anyone else who loved him, instead of looking into the sun.
July 14, 2008
something of a roll
Of course, the minute I blog about it, it'll dissipate, poof!
Over the past ten days or so, something's changed a little with my training, or rather the way I think about whatever it is Dror has me doing on a given day. Or, rather, the way I don't think about it so much. I have finally gotten used to the across-the-board drop in easy pace, and can settle into 8:30 or 8:29 without much thought or effort. Compare this to "gah! omg omg omg 8:30 at the slowest!!!! how can I do that on an easy run?" which was the way I started out every non-workout a couple weeks ago. I'm not even dreading the workouts as much as I had been; I know that unless I'm having an outright miserable day, I'm capable of whatever Dror put on the schedule, and the number - whatever it is - is nothing to be afraid of. ("Hi, I'm a small chunk of marathon-pace at the end of an easy run. I'm here to help."). Something about this training seems to agree with me. I just hope the mileage is enough.
July 13, 2008
tallies, totals, etc.
M: 9mi (6 easy, then 7:14, 7:28, 7:37, watch me faaaade)
T: 8mi (8:28), 5x strides 8th mile
W: AM 6.14mi incl track workout, PM 6mi (8:29)
R: 5mi (8:41), 5x strides 5th mile
F: 7mi (8:30), little hills
Sa: 15mi (7:51)
Su: 5mi (8:28)
total = 61.14 miles
Yes, my mileage is decidedly lower than last year. For the moment, I'm ok with this.
Wednesday's track workout was actually fun. There was nothing special about it; it was just fun rather than a discomfort-filled terrorfest. We ran 800/400/1200/1200/400/800, with a minute's rest per lap (1mi for 400, 2min for 800, etc). Goals were 93/3:10/4:45 and we went 3:08, 91, 4:36, 4:36, 88, 3:01, which was still easy enough that I could keep my head and concentrate on tactical stuff like stalking, surging, finishing kick, etc. Many of our track workouts include an "optional" mile, which I opted not to do this week but which coach goaded me into ("cmon, you're training for a marathon, you can do a mile, cmon"). He said a 7:15 mile would feel like jogging and I didn't believe him, but I ended up with 6:41, which felt like jogging, weird. Must be that cushy rubberized track.
Saturday's non-long run had a bunch of planned pace changes, which kept it interesting. I ran 6@8:08, 4@7:35, 2@7:02, and 3@8:12. I had company for the first 6 miles but the rest was solo, which was harder mentally than physically (though it was pretty brisk physically, too). I can definitely see where this kind of workout will help me, but I just hope I'm getting enough endurance training too. I don't have another >20-miler until the end of this month.
July 7, 2008
strike while the iron is hot
Or, write while the joe-positive is feeling garrulous. I had more dental surgery today - hopefully the last round - and it really hurt, and I took one vicodin as soon as my tongue was working again. When, after an hour, I realized the vicodin hadn't touched the pain, I took another. I hate vicodin, but today it was necessary.
I haven't written in a while. Lately I'm spending a lot of time by myself, and when I have so much time to think and think and think about stuff, writing it down (even for others to read) seems superfluous. But this afternoon the vicodins made me feel a little more social, so here I am.
Running (always running): going ok. Well, more than ok, though sometimes it seems like less. Compared to my usual marathon training, the mileage is somewhat lower, the pace is somewhat faster, the workouts are a little more varied, and I don't always nail 'em. But mentally I seem a little more, hmmm, with it. I'm less afraid to struggle in public, which sometimes translates to being able to push when I need to; I attribute this completely to the weekly track workouts with the club. This past weekend I ran a 5k in 19:48 - not fantastic, but solidly back under 20, and I actually ran faster the 2nd mile, OMG! The best thing about my training right now is that I can see how much work I have ahead if I want a half-decent marathon in Akron. It's a lot, but I think it's doable.
More miscellany: my beloved girl dog had ACL-replacement surgery a couple weeks ago, and I get to do massage and ROM stretches as part of her rehab. My massage practice is sort of languishing because I am such a bad self-promoter. Both my bands are doing well, and I'm really starting to enjoy playing music again. And vicodin makes you woozy.