Slow and Steady Wins the Race

Falling off the running wagon…

on August 18, 2009

I was doing so well with keeping my motivation and staying on top of my training.  Then, life got in the way and another injury snuck up on me.  After that last 9 mile run I missed a few long runs in a row.  When I got my ass back in gear one weekend I managed a 6 mile run, but then fizzled out again.  I never stopped running, but just wasn’t putting in the high mile runs I should have been.  Plus it has just been blazing hot outside which makes it really difficult to find the energy to keep going.  I also don’t fancy getting up at 5 a.m. to go for a long run on a Saturday or Sunday.  Enough excuses though.

A couple weeks ago, I had a little talk with myself after looking at the calendar and realizing just how little time I had left to train for the OBX half.  So, I was all motivated and ready to get down to business again.  I had a very difficult 5.5 mile long run on August 1st.  I wasn’t letting that get me down though and was determined to increase my weekly miles.  I got up the following Monday morning, August 3rd to do my usual during the week route which is about 2.75 miles or so.  About a 1/2 mile into the run I started to get a twinge of pain in my right ankle.  I just figured it was my body not being happy about my long run on Saturday.  The pain wasn’t affecting my gait and honestly I have run through worse.  I kept on going.  The pain got a little worse as I got near the middle to end of my run, but it still wasn’t enough to make me think that I should stop.  I made it home and hopped in the shower and got ready for work as usual without thinking about it much anymore.

After my drive to the office I got out of my truck and started to walk towards the building and then, oh my god was I in pain.  I started limping and just couldn’t believe that it just flared up for no apparent reason.  As much as I wanted to ignore it and hope that it just went away, I knew that I couldn’t.  I hadn’t rolled my ankle or had any sort of trauma that would cause this kind of pain.  I decided that I would see how it was the next day and figure out if I was going to make a trip to the doctor.  The next day it was the same.  I gave in and found a foot and ankle doctor to go see that had an appointment open that same day (Tuesday, August 4th).  Looking back now I wish I had gone to my regular Orthopedist, but oh well.  The Podiatrist was okay.  He doesn’t specialize in sports medicine and I should have gone to someone that did.  Anyway, the Doc said that I had either a stress fracture or shin splints.  There was no fracture on the x-ray he took, but that is pretty common if it was a stress fracture.  I don’t think shin splints really fits with the pain and the area of the pain, but whatever.  He told me to get some new shoes and tried to sell me some custom orthotics (the orthotics thing was funny considering he hadn’t even really diagnosed my problem definitively).  I got some new shoes this past weekend and some inserts recommended by the shoe guy.  I have an appointment this afternoon to get my ankle rechecked by the Podiatrist.  We’ll see what he has to say now.

I still have some pain, but I can walk without a limp.  If I exercise at all I usually have some pain and stiffness after sitting for long periods of time or after I wake up in the morning and start walking around.  My guess is I have tweaked a ligament or something.

Even if the Doc tells me that I can start running again I don’t know if I am going to have time to properly train for the OBX half and I am really bummed about that.  I am not counting myself out yet, but realistically it looks like I am going to have to pick a different race.  I am crossing my fingers that the new shoes and the inserts will help once I get back on the road.  I know from experience that the shoes can make a world of difference.

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