Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Sunday's 21 miles

SO Sunday's 21 miles, as I said, was a nightmare.

The whole first half was really fun--I met up with Lisa and we did 11 together at a pretty decent pace, while talking, so it flew by.  Then I met sam for (what was supposed to be) the last 11.  I continued feeling awesome right up until mile 16.  As soon as I hit mile 16 my knee started hurting really bad; I stopped and stretched, and pushed on... made it to mile 18 where the pain was basically unbearable.  Not only that, but when I stopped there were just waves of pain throughout my entire lower body.  The knee pain was so bad there were a couple of times I had to blink a little to focus my eyes.  I don't think I've ever had pain that bad before, which is a bit scary.  I kept trying to push on, but the knee would buckle under me and I almost faceplanted a few times.  I ran/walked until mile 21 and then walked my 22nd mile home (which hurt quite a lot in and of itself).  This is my last long run before the marathon so I was a hot mess, crying from pain, then crying from fear that I won't finish the race, etc.  The frustrating thing was that I felt great cardio-wise... my body just wouldn't freaking cooperate.

The pain was on the outside of my left knee.  People on the internet seem to think that means it's an IT band issue.  I need to get a foam roller and see what I can do to help things.  For the past couple days I just haven't even wanted to THINK about running, so I haven't been attending much to the knee which is bad.  I guess I'm supposed to run 5 miles, 6 miles, 5 miles, 12 miles this week as week 1 of the taper, but I ... ugh.

I checked and OSU no longer offers free athletic training services so I'm on my own if I get an injury or need help, which is frustrating.

The thing I just don't get is WHY two weeks ago I did 20 miles in worse circumstances (alone, while fearful) and it was fine... yet this week I could hardly do more than 16-18 with the worst pain ever.  If I don't know why this run was so much worse, it's going to be hard to predict what will keep the marathon from going that direction.  The only things I can think of that were different are:
1)stress this past week (ive heard it can make you more prone to injury? or is that something stressed people say to themselves? haha)
2)i ate like crap this past week (don't know if diet can make you more prone to injury?  I didn't feel as if I were lacking energy... if I did, I could see how that would lead to bad form and then to pain, but I felt energized enough)

So yeah I don't know.  I hope I can do this race.


  1. Gosh, that's too bad. Do attend to your knee though, you know the routine, but especially ICE!

    Are your shoes okay? I remember reading about shoes in a previous post, so I assume they are pretty new? Were they different models/brands than before?

    I really wouldn't think it is the stress or the food. I'd be more inclined to think overuse--heavy training, maybe not enough stretching/recovery.

    So my prescription, for what it is worth: Rest (maybe try tomorrow, but stop if it hurts), stretch, get that foam roller going, and ICE, ICE, ICE!

    You're getting into taper mode, now, so don't panic that you'll lose your fitness. Better to take a couple extra days to recover.

  2. Like Debbie said, look after the knee. There's no reason you can't manage that, now that you're tapering. With a bit of care it shouldn't stop you running the marathon.

    As for the mental game, don't worry. You've done 20 before. You know you can manage it. It's a shame your last long run was a bit of a downer, but you still covered 21 miles. And on the day, you'll be so much more focused too. I think once you start tapering, and rest up, you'll feel more confident. Plus you'll hopefully get a couple of strong, shorter runs in to help with that.

    A marathon training programme is *tough* on the body, and you've just gone through the most intense period. You're bound to be feeling mentally and physically exhausted. Give it some time, and I bet you bounce back.

  3. The shoes should be good... I've had them at least 6 weeks now I think. They're the same brand as my old ones, but a newer model, and they are neutral with my old generic arch supports (before I was wearing a mild stability). I haven't really had any problems--adjusting to them went very smoothly at least so far.

    I should work on stretching more... I'm getting the roller and we'll see how it goes :\ Thanks guys!

  4. Hey, thanks for the comments on the vegan thing. That's awesome! I've already had some trouble -- am starting to realise that packing my own lunch is probably going to be the best idea, even when I tell the conference organisers.. The tips on adapting veggie dishes would be really useful -- I'm going to have to get used to eating off menu more I guess, though I'm a bit nervous about that as it's far less common here in the UK than it is in the States. For the time being though I'm just going to focus on my own kitchen, and see how that goes. Am going to finally get round to baking your cookies today! :-)

    (Hope the taper is going ok btw..)