Showing posts with label cross training. Show all posts
Showing posts with label cross training. Show all posts

Monday, July 12, 2021

12 Things I Learned From My Worst Race

This is an updated version of a post published previously. With so many marathons taking place this fall and everyone training for them, I thought republishing this post would be helpful!

I can say without hesitation that my worst race ever was my first Chicago Marathon. I ran that race in 2011. That first marathon was SO BAD that I was ashamed to even tell anyone that I ran it. I was so disappointed in myself that I didn't feel like a real marathoner after I finished, even though I have the medal to prove that I crossed the finish line.

It took me 3 years to get up the courage to line up again and run the race I knew I had in me. I've run 3 marathons and many more half marathons since, but I still draw on my experience from that particular race to drive me through my training and races. In addition, the mental toughness I've developed since then has helped me push through my battle with RA, which is like an ultramarathon that won't quit. 

Since a lot of runners are gearing up to start training for fall marathons, I wanted to share some of the wisdom and experience I gained from that ill-fated marathon and my races since then. 

Dementia set in early on!

Tuesday, March 17, 2020

10 Things Runners Can Do to While Waiting to Outrun the Coronavirus

Disclaimer: This post contains affiliate links.

Coronavirus is spreading rapidly and people are being asked to curtail their activities. Social distancing is the phrase of the moment and means we have to avoid close contact with others. Bars and restaurants are closed. Handshakes-heck, even fist bumps, are out. Events are being cancelled. That includes races. The Tokyo Marathon? Cancelled. The Boston Marathon? The London Marathon? The Berlin Marathon? All postponed to September. Interestingly, 5 of the 6 World Marathon Majors will be held in the fall this year.

All of my spring races have been cancelled or postponed, except for one, which was a DNS for me. My running club has cancelled all of its group runs. My CrossFit box is closed. What's a runner to do? I'm not good at sitting still and I'm sure I'm not alone in feeling a little directionless. No worries! I've got a list of 10 things to keep that running fire burning.

Tuesday, February 4, 2020

4 Don'ts and Dos for Injured Runners

Disclaimer: This is an updated post from 2017.

Been there, run that. I'm the runner who ran a race on a broken toe. I'm the runner who bought herself a road bike and road tested it wearing the boot. I'm the runner who trained for and ran a marathon while battling plantar fasciitis--with my doctor's approval, of course.

We've all got stories. While researching this post, I found multiple stories of runners "pushing their limits", including a story about a runner who was planning to crutch walk the Boston Marathon. I get it. He's injured and can't run. But come on man! These articles portray the runners who do these things as heroes. I'm thinking that this act of bravery could lead to new injuries, including nerve damage to the upper extremities. Brave or foolish? Not to say that any of us wouldn't consider said act of bravery. It is Boston after all!

I also read a race recap where the runner actually walked a half marathon--wait for it, it was the Disney Wine and Dine Half Marathon--wearing a boot. Foolish? Risky? I've been in a boot and all I can say is wearing it threw off my entire gait. I would imagine there's a huge risk of injury to the unaffected extremity. The author comments in the post that she regretted her decision to boot walk the race. But if you are interested in trying this, she has some suggestions on how to best attempt this. I'd probably stay away.

Even elite runners aren't immune from running while injured. Sarah Crouch ran the 2019 Boston Marathon with a 'stress reaction' in her femur. You know how this ended, right? She hoped to be the top American woman finisher but instead developed a fracture in her femur during the race, finishing in 60th place.  She and her coach received a lot of well-deserved flack for this. However, I think we runners all understand her determination to push through injury.

Common sense tells us that sometimes, as runners, we have to give ourselves a break. But common sense isn't always common when it comes to race day or training decisions. There's no glory in being sidelined. An injured runner may be longing to participate in an event he trained for. Is the price to pay--more time off the road, medical bills, or worse--worth it?

Sunday, March 11, 2018

Sunshine, Lollipops, and Rainbows

Sometimes I struggle to start these Weekly Wrap posts--when my week is mostly smooth sailing, I don't have a whole lot to say. When you live with 2 grown boys, uneventful is always a good thing in my book. I wouldn't go as far as to say the week was all Sunshine, Lollipops, and Rainbows (Lesley Gore's classic tune is a peppy song and might actually work well on some folks' running playlists if you like happy music). Uneventful is about as Sunshine, Lollipops, and Rainbows as it gets around here!

To tell the truth, I'm not really a Sunshine, Lollipops, and Rainbows kind of gal. I'm more of a It's My Party and I'll Cry if I Want To...But I'll take an uneventful week and run with it. 

Let's do this.

Sunday, September 18, 2016

I Have No Shame...

Summer just won't let go. Not that I'm complaining but normally in September, things cool down. We are nowhere near cool. I'm actually enjoying the continued daytime warm temperatures but it's still warmer than a runner likes. In spite of the unexpected warmth, I'm having some good runs. The foot is still fairly quiet.

I'm grateful for all of this. No matter what life throws at me, and it's been throwing a lot of stuff my way, running deflects a lot of the negative energy. My runs have felt smooth and my paces are steady. It's as if I'm running in a groove.

I had this weekly wrapup all prepared to publish. All I had to do was to complete today's long run. I figured I'd come home from the run, put in a little comment about how it went and hit publish. Easy peasy, right?

Well, we all know that saying about making plans, right?

I Have No Shame

Sunday, September 11, 2016

Running Back to Center

In spite of writing some rather humorous blog posts, I've been kind of a grump all week. As much as I try to stay positive, run, and pick up pennies, I just couldn't shake off my funk. As I sit here, summarizing my week of workouts, I keep thinking to myself: what the hell was wrong with me?

Nothing really bad happened this week. Actually, nothing bad at all. When I think about it, it was a good week.

I got in some really good runs. The foot is calm. There have been some twinges, just to remind me to not push myself too hard. Yoga was blissful. All's quiet on the home front--at least for now. And a cold front came through yesterday, blowing that humidity and heat out east. It feels a little like fall.

Running Back to Center

Sunday, July 17, 2016

Becoming Unstuck

I've been putting on a brave front these last couple of weeks but I'm finally going to put it out there: this foot issue has gotten me down. I try to keep things positive here on the blog. I'm afraid if I write about feeling blue, it will only exacerbate those feelings. Plus who wants to read about my pity party? When I post positive thoughts on the blog, it makes me feel happy. The interaction I have with all of my readers reflects that.

This week I really struggled. I had trouble staying positive. Kind of stuck in a rut, so to speak. It's been nine months dealing with this and I really want it to go away.

True confession: I've got that summertime sadness. I miss running. I really do. Reality bites.

But like the runner that I am, I dug deep and ended the week with some really strong workouts and a much better attitude. I am feeling better.

Just like pushing past mile 20, right?

So how was the week?

Sunday, July 10, 2016

Sole Food: A Week Off the Road

It's been a week of ups and downs. After facing reality and realizing that I needed to take more time off running than I thought to calm this latest PF flare, I immediately felt my willpower muscle start to atrophy. Maybe it's because I trained through injury all winter--who knows--but I'm just not feeling it right now. I'm not feeling sad or anxious or guilty--really, I'm not feeling much of anything at all.

If I had to pick a feeling, I'm feeling kind of free. In a footloose and fancy-free sort of way.

Like those pay-as-you-go wireless plans, I have no long term contracts. No commitments. No obligations.  Really, the only thing I'm working on is recovering from this injury. Yes, I need to maintain fitness, but there's something to be said about shutting off the alarm and rolling over to get a little more sleep. 

Yes, I did that this week. More than once.

I don't know this person but it feels kind of good. In spite of a less than productive week, workout-wise, I'm feeling pretty ok right now.

First, the lowdown on my workouts. Spoiler alert: there's not much to share.

Friday, July 8, 2016

Revising My Fitness Goals for the Rest of the Year

Oh 2016, I had such big plans for you! I was going to travel and run all over you. Even though I started off the year with that pesky foot issue, I worked through it and got to the start lines of my 2 bucket listers, the Sarasota Half Marathon in March and the Big Sur Marathon in April. I returned home from California full of hope and ambition! I felt euphoric and fulfilled. I set my sights on a few half marathons for the rest of the year.

Naturally, fate had other plans for me. My son broke his leg and we got a new puppy. I could roll with that, but after a fall on a rock last week, my plantar fasciitis flared badly. It has yet to calm down. As you read this, I'm getting an x-ray and spending the morning with my sports medicine specialist. No matter what the outcome of that visit, it's clear to me that a revision of my goals for the year is in order.

What's a runner to do?

It isn't as if I haven't been in these shoes before. Literally and figuratively. Does it even matter what's wrong with my foot? No matter what the diagnosis, I'm still going to have to take some time off. Again. So I took a look at the goals I set for myself this year and made some alternative goals that will keep me in shape and ready to run once I can hit the road again.