Tuesday, April 22, 2014

To run or not to run?!?!

Here's the rub:

I am scheduled to run the Brooklyn half next month, but I'm also meant to start training for the NYC Marathon in July.
If I get injured (again) due to Brooklyn, I don't really have time to recover before marathon training starts.
But if I don't run Brooklyn, I won't have enough qualifying races for the NYC Half guaranteed entry next year.

Training so far:

—I ran my last half 4 weeks ago, followed by a 10k & 4miler the next weekend.
—Then I was diagnosed with tendonitis, and have taken 2 weeks off.
—In the meantime I've done deep water running and other cross training.

IF I decide to run Brooklyn my plan is:

During the week: 3 2-mile runs, or 2 3-mile runs
6 mile long run Saturday

3mi, 3mi, 2mi
8 mile long run Saturday

3 mi, 4mi, 3mi
10 mile long run Saturday

3 mi, 2 mi
Half Marathon

I feel like I have the fitness base to back this up, but I just don't want the increased milage in a small window to give me another bout of tendonitis or a stress fracture.

Should I even test out the plan above? Is that still too much mileage too soon? Do I walk/run Brooklyn? Do I just throw in the towel altogether and wait for the NYCM?


Monday, April 7, 2014

Belated Weekend Race Report

First, the good news.

After my half-marathon PR my resolve to actually train properly—with speed drills and strength training and core work—was bolstered. I hit the gym for weight training and I signed up for Jackrabbit Sports' "Targeting Training for a Faster Finish" class, where I ran my first ever Fartlek on purpose. This weekend I had back-to-back races, and based on the fact that I knew I could now run 13 miles at a steady 9:30, I was sure I could beat my best times.

Saturday, Scotland Run 10k: 
Like the half, I didn't really feel like I had to run all the miles this race comprised. I kind of mechanically just woke up, ate a frozen waffle, got dressed and headed to Central Park. It was supposed to be a warm afternoon, but it was still a windy and chilly morning, and I didn't want to do bag check, so I ended up just wearing a single long sleeve shirt which was okay for the first half, but I was pretty overheated by the end. My splits were all negative except for the first one, and I felt like I actually raced, with almost nothing left to give at the finish line. I beat my old time by 3:37, coming in at 56:15 (9:05mm) which is a faster pace than my previous best and that was for a shorter distance. PR #1!

This is my PR face.

Sunday, Run for the Parks 4mi:
I didn't want to overheat again, so I wore a tanktop but it was still pretty cold so I threw on Joe10k to keep me warm, but ended up ditching it halfway though.  My best time for this race course was the one I just mentioned (36:40/ 9:10mm) and I was not feeling as confident since I just ran 6 miles the day before and because my leg hurt AND because I didn't sleep very well with anxiety thinking that my shin was gonna go all Kevin Ware on me in the middle of it. (And if you don't know who Kevin Ware is, DO NOT Google that if you are grossed out by people's bones popping our of their legs.*) Somehow it felt like I was in a really far corral and it took a while to get around people in the first mile, but once I got to the halfway point, I knew I was running faster than a 9:10 and by the end I finished in 35:15 (8:49mm). PR #2! And a sub-9mm!  

This is also my PR face.

Now the bad news.

MY F%&*@G SHIN HURTS. Only this time, it's my right leg. It didn't bother me during the races, but earlier in the week it felt tender, and it's been an inconsistent discomfort ever since.

I was trying to do everything right! I just registered for the NYCM! After years of pain and tape and time off and MRIs, I'm pretty sure I know a stress fracture when I feel one, though I'm hoping so hard that I'm wrong. I have an appointment tomorrow with the orthopedist, who will of course take an x-ray and then send me for an MRI and then tell me not to run for 3 months. And I will probably cry and then I will get over it because I am so damn used to this.

Surprisingly, I have immediately come to terms that all the races I'm currently registered for are out, like the Mini 10k (which I feel bad about because I talked a friend of mine into running it as her first 10k ever—but I'll of course still be out there to cheer for her) and the Brooklyn half (where I was really hoping to break 2 hours). The marathon is obviously more important in the grand scheme of things and I should rest now so that I can run it later. I just hope I have enough time to heal, start back gradually, and get up to speed by the time serious training rolls around in July. I have no other relevant photos to this post, so I will just illustrate how my heart feels with this picture of my dirty, worn out sneakers:

* Actually, it's pretty crazy. You should totally Google it.