Monday, February 6, 2012

Sorry that I have been absent from the blogosphere as of late.  I have been spending alot of time reflecting on my journey and where I am at currently.  It's coming up on the one one year anniversary of my first race, I am in week 6 of my (somewhat unofficial) training cycle for my first half marathon of 2012.  The year is just starting and my race schedule for 2012 is nearly complete, and its a busy one.

This last week, the fear is starting to creep in, I am afraid I have done too much too fast.  That I have over committed myself, that I am over-working my body.  For 27 years before I decided to get healthy, I have been abusing my body by not considering what I put in it.  I had little concern over the fact that weighing too much was putting undue stress on my body.  Even though I weigh less I realize that the damage has been done, as my PT put it, my body has been carrying around all that extra weight for years, you can't undo all the damage overnight. I am working on strengthening my muscles, working on flexibility.  But the runs are oh so rough right now and its a mental challenge for me.

I struggle to know what are normal pains versus pains I should be worried about.  I have dull aches and burning in my lower legs, pain in my ankles, and then occasional bouts of pain on the outside of my knee.  I have self diagnosed them and I am trying to do what I can to fix them.  The burning and ache in the legs I am attributing to shin splints, the ankles I am just assuming is because they are weak and unstable, and the knee I believe is related to my IT band.  All small things that aren't a huge deal on their own but add up to a very nervous Jenn.  So, I have really hit the strength training hard, and I am stretching as well as trying to slow my runs down.  I have also given up my goal of 1000 miles this year.  I am just going to follow my training plans and do what I can.  1000 miles would be awesome, but not if it causes injuries.

Oh what I wouldn't give for something other than HSA insurance right now.  I just can't see paying $500+ to go to a doctor and get everything evaluated!  I guess in a few weeks if I am not seeing improvements I will have to reconsider, but for now... just taking it easy.

Hope to have a more exciting post soon, but for tonight.. time to go rest!


  1. Oh I'm sorry you're having problems. I can relate to the fear and doubt - it's normal.

    As for aches and pains...You have to listen to your body. Careful with the shins - it could be shin splints, it could be stress fractures. You have to be careful. The knee could be IT band or something else. While I prescribe to some self diagnosis myself, I also try to be aware of how long something has gone on, if there's any improvement or things get worse, etc...Remember, not paying attention can lead you to serious injury and permanent damage.

    I don't know what you're doing with your training plan, but remember not to increase your mileage too quickly. Do a variety of workouts - easy runs, tempo runs, long runs - this builds your strength, endurance and muscles. Cross training is important and so is the strength training and stretching you've added.

    I saw your comment about how do I do so many events in a year. I've been doing this for a few years now and I know what I can and cannot get away with. Consistency in training miles is super important to me. Also adjusting my expectations for each race makes a huge difference - I realize that I probably won't get many PRs and accept that. I try to enjoy the races and do my best each time and that's the most important to me at this point.

    Good luck with everything, make sure to build rest days in to your training plan and listen to your body and I'm sure you'll be fine!

  2. Thank you for your post. Your comment hit on my biggest fear - a stress fracture. It is both shins, but one more than the other, so I guess I need to bite the bullet and go to the doc. Of course, I have heard it can be very difficult and expensive to diagnose stress fractures. Boo.

    I have a pretty good training schedule, it seems on par with most of them out there, but I was doing a bit more hardcore training at the beginning of the month. I am really bummed about this development and not sure I should run my race on Saturday. Its just a 5k, but it was a really important one to me. Not to mention my half on April 7th, and the one after it the first weekend in May. I guess worse case I can walk the halves, but I am still bummed.

  3. It sounds like you are probably right on track with your self diagnosis. I've always felt like it you know your body and listen to it then that goes a long way. Keep listening to your body! Good luck with your continued training!