Sunday, December 11, 2011

Another New Distance PR -- Will I Be Paying For It?

So as I've mentioned in my other posts, I am battling a mild cause of ITBS (Iliotibial Band Syndrome) AKA: My knees hurt like !@#! when I run. Okay, that's a mild exaggeration. They don't really hurt that bad, but it's enough to be noticable. Anyway, I had a short 3 mile run on Thursday and felt okay. Yesterday, I had a few twinges of pain here and there, but nothing big. I was able to get around, including using stairs (which is really painful with ITBS) without a problem. I massaged both legs and knees with my new foam roller, iced like crazy, and started popping ibuprofen like it was candy. I decided to give my 9 mile run a try today.

I chose a course where I could go out for 2.25 miles, come back, and then go out 2.25 the other way and then come back. That way, the course wasn't too boring, but I was never more than about 2 miles from my car, just in case. When I started, my left knee, which is the worse of the two, was hurting a little, but my right knee was totally pain-free! "I'm cured, at least in one knee!" I thought. Well, after mile 2.5, that tune changed. Both knees started to hurt, but nothing too bad. Once again, on a scale of 1-10, the pain was probably only a 2 or 3. I argued with myself about whether or not I should stop at the halfway point where my car was. I was so determined to do my 9 miles though, I kept on going. At that point, I made a mental decision to make the best of this run as I could. I would give myself the next 2 weeks off totally to heal and recover. I really just wanted to prove to myself that I could do 9 miles. Anyhow, the pain was on and off for another 2-3 miles. When I turned around though to finish off my last 2.25 miles, it was tough. While the pain continued to be on and off, the intensity of pain was increasing during the "on" times. Just as it was getting to be about a level 4 on my pain-o-meter, I was luckily almost finished. I looked down at my watch to see my finish time of about 1 hour, 29 minutes for 9.1 miles, which gives me about a 9:45 pace. I was happy about that, but what frustrates me is that aerobically, I felt totally fine, and my legs weren't tired at all (thank you again, magical Sport Beans!) -- I could have easily gone another 2-3 miles or more if is wasn't for my stupid knees! Whoda thunk that this was going to be what keeps me from progessing. Oh well. What are you going to do?

So, it looks like I'll be taking the next two weeks off from running. My elliptical and I will become good friends. I've at least proven to myself that I can run the 9 miles, so I'm not worried about running 10 for my race in a few weeks. I'll just have to keep my conditioning up with cross training. My goal now is to concentrate on getting to the starting line healthy so that I can actually enjoy the race!

As a side note, I ran with my new Balega socks today. I got them from my local Feet Fleet store. They are supposed to be super awesome for running and preventing blisters. (They better be! Those socks cost $10 for one pair!) Mine are like the ones in the pic, but pink. Well, after running my 9.1 miles in them today, I can attest to their awesomeness! With these babies, my feet may be sandal ready by May after all !

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