Friday, 22 March 2013

More Then A Feeling

Like a lot of my friends, this winter is getting me down.  I am so sick of snow and cold temperatures, tired of my injury keeping me from running and worried about my next race in 6 weeks (eek).  I have missed running, it's more then the endorphin's runners get, or that runners high, it's part of my life.  Not running is like a part of you is missing, something is not quite right and there is nothing you can do about it.  

Looking for motivation and inspiration one day I came across a book review of  A Life Without Limits: A World Champion's Journey by Chrissie Wellington on the From Couch to Ironwoman blog.  I want to read that book, maybe it was what I needed.  I went to my online bookstore to order it but it was not out in paperback yet, it will be next month so I decided to wait. 

The book for April was The Long Run by Matt Long so I decided to read that one first.  Matt is a FDNY firefighter who ran marathons and did an Ironman before he was hit by a bus on December 22, 2005.  He was given a 5% chance of survival and told he would probably not run again.  The book details his story and his recovery, the good, the bad and very bad.  All through his recovery he had one underlying thought, he wanted to run again.  Until he completed the NYC Marathon again, his recovery would not be complete.  He was an athlete before the accident and he needed to be one again, for himself, because it was part of his life and he did not feel complete without it.  One line struck me when describing his life before the accident..."Everything I have, I worked for.... none of it came easy.  If it had, everyone would be out doing Ironmans."

Most of my friends are not natural born athletes, we work at it, we work darn hard.  We struggle, we get injured, we have good runs and bad runs and days we wonder why we run.  We run for a variety of reason, most for health and weight loss or maintenance, some for the medals and the PRs the drive them to keep training, others because it's a part of their lives.  We keep at it, we keep pushing and training and working, it is not easy, giving up is easy, running and training is hard.  I run for all these reasons, slowly running and training for triathlons have become as much of my daily routine as brushing my teeth.  Matt's book has re-ignited the fire and passion for training...I am hoping this fire can help melt the snow since Mother Nature sure does not seem willing to do so.

The Long Run: A New York City Firefighter's Triumphant Comeback from Crash Victim to Elite Athlete

Saturday, 16 March 2013

A Little Irish Luck

So today I ran for the first time in 2 weeks, it is week 4 of the calf injury.  I ran the St Patrick's Day 5K, it was a beautiful day, cold but sunny and I was anxious to see how the calf held up.  I left my watch at home and I was going to run by feel, I would go as fast as the calf would let me, if I had any sharp pain, I would stop and walk.  I ran all the way to the halfway turnaround, took a short break to massage the calf to see if it was tightening up and it felt good so I carried on to the finish.  The run was not pain free, I felt the calf muscle, a dull pain just to let me know it was there but manageable.  I resisted temptation to speed up as we got to the finish and I was surprised my my time.  My time was faster then I thought it might be, it was a 7min km pace, my long slow run pace when I am fit, more then I hoped for today.  The calf muscle is sore now but nothing unbearable.

Today's run did tell me that the calf would not be ready for half marathon training anytime soon however so I need to adjust my plans. Tomorrow I start training to walk the half marathon May 5th not run it as I had planned.  For some reason walking does not bother the calf muscle as much as running does.  I might be able to run part of it but my cardio will not be good enough to run the whole thing, that I know.  Hopefully the weather will get warm soon so I can cycle more but for now I hope to swim 3 times a week, cycle twice and run a 5K when I can, Saturdays will be my long slow walk instead of a run.  I walked a half marathon in 2010 so I have a time to beat which will keep me motivated.  I will now focus running the 10K in Halifax and the 5K in Ottawa rather then worrying about the half marathon.  

We make plans and when things do not go as planned, we adjust, simple as that.  I am not going to get upset about this, it is what it is but I am not going to let me defeat me either.  I will take any bit of Irish Luck I can get however so I can sort out this injury and return to running soon but until then I will be 'walking away with myself'.

“All human plans [are] subject to ruthless revision by Nature, or Fate, or whatever one preferred to call the powers behind the Universe.” 
― Arthur C. Clarke2010: Odyssey Two

Tuesday, 5 March 2013

I Guess That's Why They Call it the Blues

Week 3 of the calf muscle saga and I am feeling blue.  I have one or two good days and then the muscle seizes up again and I can't run.  I head back to see my chiropractor and I am good for a few more days but come on....I WANT TO RUN!  I know you do not get what you want in life, you get what you need and I am trying to stay positive but my next half marathon is in 8 weeks and I have a 5K race next Saturday.  I am wondering if swimming is the cause, not the running, I will have to ask Steve about that tomorrow.  My calf muscle was fine until after yesterdays killer swim practice but what ever the cause is, I need to fix it...soon.  I have been really lucky with my training, no big injuries to keep me sidelined for too long so this is terrible.  A few years ago, I would be happy for any excuse not to run but now it's a part of my life and I miss it.   

I remember reading in Shut Up and Run that there are 5 stages of  injury, I think I am in the bargaining phase, I just want to get this sorted out in enough time to train for my half marathon, I need about 6 weeks and I am running out of time!  I need to breath, get treatment, not push it and let the universe take its course. I know I can walk the half marathon if I need too but I would rather run it but either way I am not letting Team Diabetes down, I will be there ready to walk, run or crawl if I need too.  

I have learned that exercise is now part of my life, I need to do it and I really miss it...being injured sucks!