The Run Yesterday I ran a 10-miler; the last long run before the big race next Saturday. I started out at 9 am; it was a nice day and the sun was already warming things up. The first two miles and the last two miles are usually the worst.
Things started out tough first mile. I couldn’t find my rhythm. I thought to myself, “This is going to be a long day.” I came up on an elderly couple who was walking on the trail so I moved left to pass them. At the same time, a cyclist came up behind me and yelled at me that she was on the left and to move over. Typical cyclist. They think they own the road. I said a few words back at her, but the situation fired me up and got me rolling on a steady pace. From that point on I was good to go.
For runs longer than 90 minutes, I wear my running belt that’s equipped with two water bottles. I fill them with grape Propel and hydrate every two miles.
Miles 2-4 seem to fly by. My goal was to eat a Chocolate GU at five miles but at four miles, I felt myself start to drag so I fueled up with a GU. I immediately felt my energy level rise which was a good thing because Miles 4.5 – 5 was straight uphill. I needed that extra boost to make that climb.
At Mile 5, the half-way turnaround, I was exactly one hour into the run; slower than my pre-injury time, but in-line with the goal I’d set for the day.
I’m like a “second half team” because always do much better after the half-way point. For the rest of the run I concentrated on my pace, posture and music, and the next thing I knew I was at Mile 9! I didn’t even need another GU and I finished the 10 miles in exactly 2 hours.
Post-Run Recovery These days, I no longer feel the injury when I run; it’s post-run that I suffer. After a 10-miler, I anticipated the hurt to be pretty bad.
As soon as I finished running, I walked for another half mile to cool down, then did static stretching for about 20 minutes. It felt so good to stretch in the sun. When I got to my car, I ate a banana; the potassium is great for muscle recovery. I stopped at Whole Foods to pick up some lunch (grilled vegetables and beef brisket), then went home and straight into the hot tub where I soaked for 15-minutes. Then came home and soaked in the tub, using Bath Therapy, for another 20 minutes. After lunch, I spent the rest of day:
• Doing static stretches • Rolling my IT band on a foam roller • Rolling on a medicine ball • Using a rolling pin on my quads and calves • And of course, the theracane on the hammy.
As expected, this morning I woke up with stiff legs, but the hurt wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. I spent other 15-minutes in hot tub and was able to do some walking today.
Six weeks of physical therapy has paid off! The hammy feels pretty good and the soreness in the quads is already starting to wear off. I hope to get in a short, maybe 5-K run in on Tuesday or Wednesday and then no more running till race day!