Monday, November 24, 2014

Michigan Weather

Monday: 4.2 miles, 3(5:00 running, :30 walk) + running the rest
Tuesday: strength training
Wednesday: 5.18 miles (break at the halfway point)
Thursday: rest
Friday: rest
Saturday: 3.13
Sunday: 2.12

Total miles: 14.63

My weekly mileage was actually lower this week than it was last week. Since a couple of my runs were complete without any walk breaks, I am pretty happy with the way things are progressing. Sure, I would like to be running more and not have each run feel quite so difficult, but I am making progress. That is the important thing.

Pretty much this.
The weather this week has been so crazy. On Monday it was cold (22 F) and windy. The wind was absolutely brutal during the last mile of my run. On Wednesday it was snowing; we ended up with a couple inches total. Only part of the trail had been cleared, the rest of the way felt like running in loose sand. My calf was not a fan of terrain and was very tired by the end of the run. Saturday morning everything was covered with a layer of ice, but that started melting mid-day and it rained. Sunday it was in the 50s and I wore shorts on my run.

Monday, November 17, 2014

Weekly Recap

Monday: 4.02 miles, 5:00 running, 1:00 walking
Tuesday: rest
Wednesday: 4.02 miles, 7:00 running, 1:00 walking
Thursday: rest
Friday: 4.2 miles, 9:00 running, 1:00 walking
Saturday: rest
Sunday: 3.4 miles, 7:00 running, 1:00 walking

Total miles: 15.64

Confession: I was feeling really good on Friday and pushed the pace quite a bit during the last half mile. That was definitely a mistake and has resulted in a very tight right calf on Saturday. I had a difficult time determining if it was just normal, ran-too-hard pain or angry injury pain. It didn't feel quite the same as the injury so I'm hoping it is just normal pain. I can actually feel a tight, knotted muscle in my calf, which wasn't the case with my calf strain.

Confession 2: When I went out for a run on Sunday my calf was still pretty tight. I probably shouldn't be pushing it if there was a chance it was injury related pain, but I wanted to run. So I did. I did cut back my planned distance and reduced my pace by quite a bit. I could tell when I was running that this definitely was NOT injury pain. It felt completely fine during the running bits. Definitely just a tight muscle.

Confession 3: I gave Mr. Shoe approximately 0.2 seconds notice that I was going to take that picture. He walked in the door, I yelled at him to not take his jacket off, and then snapped the picture. Sorry, not sorry.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Strength Day

After Monday's post about needing a training plan, I sat down and planned out the rest of the year. I think it is a pretty good plan. By the end of the year, I should be consistently running 5 days a week and my long run will be up to 10 miles. At that point I will still have an additional 7 weeks to get ready for the Disney Princess Half.

I didn't work any strength training or cross training into my plan, but I really need to. Not getting injured is probably going to be one of my top goals for 2015. And to minimize the risk of injury I am going to need to do some strength training. I hit the gym on Tuesday and did the following:

Not listed: calf raises, bent over rows
I'm definitely not an expert in weight lifting, but this seemed like a good mix of running specific leg stuff and upper body stuff. It also served as a nice reminder that I haven't gone to the weight room in approximately 6 months. The single leg dead lifts ended up being just normal dead lifts and I needed assistance with the single leg squats. I am so out of shape!

I was reasonably sore on Wednesday even though I only did one set of each exercise. Not sore enough that I couldn't run, but sore enough that I needed to spend some extra time stretching and warming up. At least I had company while I stretched.

Little kitty insisted it was petting time. Good thing she is cute.
I'm not sure how often I am going to incorporate strength training into my routine. Does anyone else lift weights? If so, how often per week? I think I could set one day per week aside for weights, but I'm not sure if that is enough. I also know that every time I plan to lift after a run I end up skipping the lifting every.single.time. So there is no sense in setting myself up for failure.

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Plan Needed!

All fancied up!
I was hoping to run every other day this week. Instead I managed to run twice. Ooops.

Monday: planned rest day
Tuesday: 3.62 miles at 3:00 running, 1:00 walking
Wednesday: planned rest day
Thursday: excuse day
Friday: 4.02 miles at 4:30 running, 1:00 walking
Saturday: planned rest day
Sunday: excuse day

I really was planning on running on Sunday, but Mr. Shoe and I attended a wedding Saturday night and I was just exhausted all day Sunday. It is actually a small miracle that I made it through Sunday without taking a nap.

 I think it is time to sit down and write an actual training/recovery plan. I do better when I have a written plan. If I am just making it up as I go, I let myself make up excuses as well (see above). I have been hesitant to write an actual plan, because I didn't want to feel guilty if I couldn't stick with it due to my injury. But I haven't had any issues with my calf so I think it is time to get a plan going.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Almost back!

I haven't felt up to blogging for the past few weeks because I haven't had much to say. I haven't been running and I didn't feel the need to keep reminding myself of how much I missed it. Finally I am at a point were I am making slow, but steady progress. I have been following Courtney's advice to taking it really, really slow and ice after every bit of exercise. This is the type of injury that go on and on for months if you don't let it fully heal. I definitely don't want to do that.

My recovery so far has included 1 full week of rest followed by 2 weeks of stretching and walking. I made my return to running with a test run of 1:00 running followed by 2:00 of walking on October 20th. While that felt fine during the run, I noticed the next day that my calf felt really tight. It wasn't necessarily painful, but it definitely didn't feel normal. I took two days off after that and then started again with 0:30 of running and 2:30 of walking. It was slow and a bit frustrating, but I was pain/tightness free the next day.

I think it might be time for new shoes!
Since then I have been "running" every other day and slowly increasing my run time while decreasing the time spent walking. Fortunately Michigan was enjoying a very warm fall or these walks would have been pretty miserable. It is hard to stay warmed up when most of your time is spend walking! On Halloween I was up to 2:00 of running and 1:00 of walking. I was grateful that this was mostly running since it was super cold and I hadn't bothered to check the weather. 41 degrees + wind + shorts is not a great combo.

My plan is to spend another 3 weeks running progressively longer intervals and getting back to running 5 days per week. At that point I will be 8 weeks post injury. I will then spend another 4 weeks just focusing on increasing distance while keeping the pace easy. When I reach 12 weeks post injury (December 22) I should be able to start doing speed work without any risk of re-injury. So that's the plan. Assuming I can stick to it without becoming too impatient!