Thursday, August 27, 2009

limbo with a chance of stress fracture

i finally went to the doctor today which i was both happy about and dreading. i went in hoping that there would be an "eh - it's muscular!" diagnosis straight away...but unfortunately, it was not to be.

i answered a bunch of questions for a medical student working with the doctor - the basics plus what kind of pain and when and how and all that. sometimes when describing how it hurts or how much, i am fairly certain i sound like a hypochondriac. it feels the same as when you have an eye exam and they keep asking you "which is better - this? or this?" when there isn't a whole lotta difference at all.

the doctor was prompt and no nonsense. she asked more questions - about the pain. how often i was going to pt...if it helped...what they were doing. poked at my leg. poked some more. did a few tests where she would hold my leg down and i was to press up. or to the side. or pull down. after one of these tests she said - THIS is what they should be working on! and i said my hip? and she said - no, your GLUTES.

this made me sad.

my left leg is stronger than my right at the moment (not surprising). after the tests she poked around a bit more and found a spot right on the bone and was like - does this hurt and it did.

she said it could just be a muscle strain of one of a few different muscles, one of which that runs right down the shin bone OR it could be a stress fracture OR it could be a bit of both.


in the end...i have been subscribed 2x a week physical therapy for 6 weeks, a bone scan, some extra extra strength anti-inflammatory pills, no running until we see the bone scan results, no elliptical because it still puts pressure on that part of the leg, ideally i would get to the pool (she said this as though i had one in my backyard) and use the "aquajogger" and last but certainly not least - i am not allowed to wear flip flops because not having arch support aggrivates this sort of thing. NO FLIP FLOPS?

so more physical therapy tomorrow, and then the lovely bone scan will be next week. i'm kinda depressed but going to try to remain optimistic and look for a pool and maybe buy the aquajogger thingy if i find one. i'm also traveling for a few weeks this month which is not going to help matters...whether it be going to the pool or physical therapy or running if i'm lucky.

i'd stomp my foot but that probably wouldn't be good the ole leg either.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

morning run FAIL

i'm really so annoyed at the moment i can barely contain myself.

my plan was to do longer short runs (like 5 miles) this week to make up for any "lost" mileage from my saturday runs - and so i got up nice and early to make sure i'd have time for a good solid run.

i practically sprang out of bed, and for the first time in a while i didn't notice the pain in my calf - which immediately made me elated. i could still feel it on the steps, but typically those first few steps out of bed are very tender ones and i was feeling really optimistic.

i got all suited up and headed out...but noticed the steps down on my stoop actually hurt more. this gave me pause, but i figured oh, its just stairs. as i started running, the pain in my calf was so that i could tell i was limping. i swore and decided i would briskly walk up the my leg a little warm up time and then see how i would do in the top of the park, which is more flat than uphill.

it was a no go. on the "pain scale" we talk about at the physically therapist, i had shot from a 2/3 to a 6/7 and was definitely hobbling. shit shit shit. i almost threw a tempertantrum right there and went to kick a lightpost, but realized i was going to kick it with my "bad leg" and figured this wouldn't do me any good.

i swore and grumbled in frustration all the way back to my house. i did not cry but i probably could have let loose some tears of frustration if i had had the mind to. i glared at the runners headed to the park, and when some gross guy hanging out on the stoop had the bad taste to cat call me at 7:15 in the morning, i gave him a not-so-lady-like hand gesture in return. grrrrr. the bike has two flats so i couldn't go for a ride so i contented myself with some sit ups and push ups but i'm really really really discouraged and frustrated.

i'm going to call the actual doctor today and see if she can fit me in before my appointment next week on the 2nd. depending on how the day goes, i may try again later, or at least get to the gym for some cross training.

Sunday, August 23, 2009

i'm back

you should be singin' that title ac/dc style.

so apologies for it being a while. i haven't had much to say because i've been a bit injured and i get super cranky when i'm injured, so i've mostly been updating through the ole facebook page where I can keep it short and sweet.

so....after my "successful" long run two weeks ago, i got myself a bit of a calf strain. it was probably something that had been building up but i hadn't noticed and perhaps my speedy run set it off. i wasn't able to get into the physical therapist until this past monday, so for one week i just rested and didn't do anything but ice and use the torture device aka roller.

so when i went to see the PT monday, that is when i was diagnosed. the good news was that i could still run - just not fast (absolutely no speed work), not too many hills (no hill training), and not too long. weeeeeell okay then. i was also to stretch and roll before running and also 3x a day, as well as trying to get to the gym for some reduced weight calf raises.

on wednesday morning i went out for my first one and it felt pretty shitty. it doesn't hurt like sharp shooting pain - it's more of a tight dull ache that makes it feel as tho the calf muscle doesn't have a complete range of motion. this made me feel a bit like i was hobbling, even though i wasn't really compensating judging by my gait. it just felt weird. i ran 3.4 miles and gave myself a good stretch but felt very stiff and therefor discouraged all day wednesday.

wednesday's mileage: 13.3
time run: n/a
season mileage to date: 183.5

thursday i felt better - it seemed as though maybe the run had done the stiffness good.

friday after work i went back to the pt where he did more soft tissue work (aka super painful massage/pressure stuff) and some exercises. i wanted to see if i could get away with running 10 miles this weekend, but when i told him that jersey was hilly, he said he would prefer if i maxed out at 8. okaaaaay. it's hard to be good.

i decided to run today because i got out to jersey late on friday and saturday promised on and off rain all day. i got a late start, mostly because i didn't sleep well. i mapped out a course that was a bit over 7 miles, and decided if i was feeling awesome i could always tack a little more on at the end.

i didn't really feel awesome at any point of the run. there were points where i felt way better than others, but i can feel that i haven't run in a bit, and that coupled with feeling very "gimpy" left me feeling very awkward and uncoordinated. the first 3 miles were the worst. i felt hot, winded and lopsided.

things got better as i went, and my mid-run gatorade definitely helped me out, leading me to believe i did not hydrate properly saturday evening (full disclosure: i did have a few sugar-laded cocktails saturday afternoon that i probably could have done without considering i was running the next day).

when i got to the turn off to head back to the house, i took it, knowing that i have plenty of time, and pushing my injury is not going to do anyone any good. i had my watch on for hydrating purposes but was very slow, so probably shouldn't have timed myself, as it is damaging to my psyche to be running so slowly.

but now, i've stretched and rolled some more, and had some grilled french toast cooked up by my man and we'll see how the week goes!

today's mileage: 7.3
time run: 1h25m
season mileage to date: 190.8

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

one lousy mile. ish.

as you might have noticed i've had a tweeky calf since saturday's run that i was so pleased with. i let it rest for a few days, opted out of practice, rolled, iced, stretched, took a bunch of advil, and iced some more. i called my doctor - she's out for a few weeks, and i have an appointment on september 2nd. i call my pt - they don't have an appointment until monday.

and so i sit in injury i run? how much? when should i stop or keep going? is it serious? I WANNA RUN.

this morning i decided that it was time to test it out. i decided i would run the shortest route of my park routes, and if my calf was bugging me, i would be good and walk back home. i headed out and my calf was feeling very stiff. i ran up the hill and into the park, and probably about about a mile into the run i decide it was best to stop. the tightness was hurting - not so much that i was overcompensating, but it definitely did not feel right.

i knew i could motor through the rest of the run, but not knowing what is going on made me decide to rest and hopefully, sooner than later, run another day.

and so i go back to icing, advil, stretching, rolling and attempting not to worry.

Saturday, August 08, 2009

hills in jersey make you fast in brooklyn

today the team was kicking off summer streets in the city, but after a bunch of debate i just couldn't bring myself to get up to run with them.

partially, i was just feeling lazy about meeting up with the the city. but then friday during the day i felt progressively more sickish. i say sickish because i wasn't all out sniffly or feverish - more so just felt something coming on. i also didn't really want to deal with all the other people/bikes/tourists that would be out for city streets so i made the decision to run in brooklyn, maybe just in the park or some combination of park + run to coney island.

the prerun morning didn't go great. first i had trouble sleeping the night before. then when i got up to choke down my oatmeal at 6:30, i couldn't find the honey, which made the oatmeal experience even more difficult than it usually is. then, i intended to get up at 8 and be out by 8:30. instead i didn't drag myself out of bed until almost 8:30, and for whatever reason the process of getting ready took. me. for. ever. i needed to clean my water bottles. where did i put those new gels. where's my body glide? maybe i should use the ipod...where is it? i don't have any sporty sunscreen, i guess i'll use the neutrogena. etc. etc. etc.

i didn't get out of the house until close to 9:30. luckily for me it was a gorgeous morning so i wasn't going to fry on account of my slowness.

since i really wasn't feeling well i decided for miles in the park - that way if i needed to bail, it would be way easier than trying to do so 1/2 way to coney island. i was extra thankful i had the music to accompany me given the boring nature of the route - not as boring as coney island where the road stretches endlessly in front of you - but still boring for its familiarity. i haven't run with music all season mostly because at practice you're not allowed, and i can't find my little one, and...on some level i do look at it as a bit of a crutch. i guess i think that if you can do those insane miles with no music - then you can use music as a crazy secret weapon when you really really need it.

well, i was feeling needy yesterday so i ran with music the whole time and it was goooood. i was like an addict coming back for a fix and since i hadn't gotten my shit together to make a nice long playlist, was left fussing with the ipod anytime an album would stop because then i HAD to have the music.

i ran a variety of loop combos, ending with a reverse of the shorter run i sometimes run in the morning, which meant i went down the big hill and that was actually killer. when i looked at my watch, i was surprised to find that in just a bit more than the time i usually run in jersey...i ran an extra 2 miles. i would like to think that this says something about how i'm getting faster, but really - it just shows you how damn hilly jersey is. but i was pretty fast - 10.75 minute miles.

if i can maintain that speed for the marathon (not sure that this is possible quite yet), that would be a 281m marathon which is...4 hours and 41 minutes. actually, that's only a 9 minute gain on paris...where i feel like i started waaaaay too fast and was not nearly as well trained. so that should be doable.

i ended my run more sore than i've been in a while, but happy with the run. maybe i'll summer-street it next weekend.

today's mileage: 13.3
time run: 2h23m
season mileage to date: 180.1

Thursday, August 06, 2009

just more miles

it was an uneventful morning run. so uneventful that i'm not really going to talk about it but rather just use this post to keep track of the mileage.


today's mileage: 3.8
time run: 39m
season mileage to date: 166.8

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

sweaty hill repeats

tuesday night's run was drenching and sticky. we were scheduled to run speed/effort work on the north hill and we all knew it was going to be a night that would kick our collective butts.

before we ran off, our coach asked those of us that were nursing knee or IT injuries to raise our hands and then see him before we headed out for the warm up. there were only three of us, and coach jim told us that because that particular work out is rather hard on IT and knee injuries, we would run the same course, but simply run it steady and easy, not pushing too hard on the uphill or the downhill.

it's hard to complain when you don't have to sprint uphills, although whenever i get a "special" workout i always feel like i am somehow slacking even though i know i'm not. i ran with one of the other injured people for most of the run and we were chatting about our events and how many marathons and fundraising and all that. i told him about how i started running marathons and about steve. he told me that his fiancee died six months ago and that's why he was running, and he was bummed that he was having IT issues because obviously he really wanted to do this well.

i didn't know what to say except for "i'm so sorry" and some fumbling offerings of how having this as an outlet can help. we quietly ran for a few minutes and i thought about jeanne and gave her a hug in my mind. losing loved ones so young is just so damn cruel and i was quietly sad.

my running buddy broke off to grab some water, and i used my sad to motor up and down the hills. it was not an easy work out. i understood why our coach wasn't going to let us push it during the workout because just running up and down the hill was definitely getting to my hip. i was glad when we were done - i stretched out well and rolled my leg when i got home, and hoped for the humidity to break later in the week.

today's mileage: 5.0
time run: n/a
season mileage to date: 163.0

Saturday, August 01, 2009

up the downhills, down the uphills

i am tired of talking about the weather, damn it. seriously. too hot. too rainy. too humid. blah blah. from here on out, unless i'm running in SUPER unusual or dangerous weather, or unless it affects my run in a *specific* way, i am hereby not allowed to talk about it.

today's route took me out the usual way, but this time i went backwards along the what is the end of my typical route, and then looped around the lake for a whole new section which is awesome since i'm definitely getting bored with my route.

so hills that i usually run up, i ran down. hills i usually run down, i ran up. i also had almost 2 miles that were flat (happy days!), and some new hills - one of which, was quite frankly - a bitch (see leading up to mile 9 on the elevation chart part of the course map). however looking at the route overall, i liked it. most of the early part was in the sun which was find because it was cool, and then the last 6 miles or so were mostly shady and a little cooler which is nicer later in the day.

the run was a solid one - a bit slower, but i can live with that considering the elevation. i seriously feel like rocky sometimes when i'm fighting my way up a hill. then i imagine in my head how slow i'm probably going and it makes me crack up how UNlike rocky i must look in actuality. i really must do a flat run next weekend when i'm back in the city to see how swift i can be - these hills must be making me way stronger.

i am definitely feeling them in both my hips and knees but i've stretched once, and i'll stretch again later. i MUST run tomorrow because when we're out here on the weekend no matter how i try i never mange to run on Monday night. so a quick one tomorrow, then that'll be it until tuesday's practice when we should be doing - yeah, you guessed it...more hills.

today's mileage: 11.2
time run: 2hr 13m
season mileage to date: 158.0