Running Lately

Gosh, I don’t even want to know how long it’s been since I posted a running post. Probably sometime back in November?

Well, I’m happy to say that I finally (FINALLY) feel healthy (knock on wood!) and managed to run four times last week. By January 19 I had doubled my December mileage (and then some).

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I’m pretty sure the reason I got sick back in November was stress related. The initial illness hit after a stressful day, and then I just got sicker and sicker. Thankfully the stress and the sick are gone – woo hoo!

I don’t recommend taking nearly 6 weeks off from running, or running less than a half marathon in one month, as it’s made getting back into running challenging.

I spent a lot of the six weeks doing nothing (mainly because I couldn’t breathe) which wasn’t good for my body. Over time I’ve learned my body functions best when I’m active. If I’m not active I get a ton of aches and pains which makes it even harder to get back into running – it’s definitely a catch 22.

The week of January 6 was the first week I felt well enough (ish) to start running and I was dealing with a lot of fatigue (and only making it 20 minutes on the treadmill before dying) and pain. My right IT band was extremely tight so on top of running I was rolling twice a day and making some really interesting noises 🙂

Last week I decided to change-up my shoes when running on the treadmill, as my beloved Newton Gravity’s aren’t recommended for treadmill running. Bad. Idea. The first day in my Asics was fine, I made it 10k and didn’t feel awful, the second day I made it 6.4km and felt okay, until I stopped. That’s when the shin pain set in.

Over the summer I was fitted for orthotics, but they’re for my Newton’s (as they’re a 0-drop shoe) and not my Asics, so I wasn’t able to move my orthotics over. Turns out, they really are helping with my shin pain – so I ended up resting and rolling my shin and running outside on Friday and Saturday.

Lesson learned: don’t mess with what works, even if the shoes are dang expensive!

I’ve ordered a pair of Energy NR shoes, as they’re recommended for treadmills and these will give me something to alternate with when training for the Ultra. I’m also considering a pair of either Distance Elite’s or Distance U’s to use for speedwork and middle distance racing (up to a half – I’ll stick with my Gravity’s for a marathon or an ultra for the extra cushioning).

(And, since I’m blabbering on about shoes, I’d also love a pair of the Terra Momentum’s for hiking this summer!) (Anyone want to buy me shoes? Or have a hookup at Newton?).

Given that I was off for six weeks, I’m obviously not in a place to follow my training plan, as the speedwork and long runs are pretty intense, so I’m working on building my base for this week, and starting the week of January 27, I will add in one day of speed work and one day of tempo runs for 3 weeks until I taper for the Glass Slipper Challenge. Since I’m changing up my runs from my training plan, I’ll continue to post my planned runs and actual runs in my weekly plan posts.

While I’m hoping to have some good runs in Disney, my goal is to have a good base so I can recover quickly and start training for the ultra when I return. I was feeling pretty bummed about running up until this past weekend, and I’m glad I can finally feel good about it, and not feel like signing up for an ultra was dumb <– because that’s what it felt like for a while.

And, if I’m being completely honest, I’m also struggling a bit weight-wise. I mentioned before I gained a few pounds over Christmas and to get to where I’d like to be for running, I need to lose 5-8 pounds. I know that doesn’t sound like a lot of weight, but I notice a big difference in my pace and effort where I am now versus where I was when I ran SeaWheeze.

Actively trying to lose weight has always been a slippery slope for me, so I’m not exactly sure how to approach this. I seriously considered doing the AdvoCare 24 day challenge, after reading about Becky’s thoughts, but I’m fairly certain I’d be doing it for the wrong reasons. I wouldn’t be doing it to help my body, I’d be doing it because I’m unhappy with my body and not because I want to feel healthy (I’m not sure if that makes sense).

I know when I start fishing for ways to fix things (cleanses, labelling foods as “off limits”) my issue is more than wanting to be healthy – it’s because I feel unhappy and shameful about my body. I’m hopeful that running regularly and eating and healthfully as I have been will help this excess weight (ha! It’s not really excess and I am still at a totally healthy weight) to find some place else to live. (My boobs would be a great place for it to move to!)

Tell me: What’s your biggest hurdle after taking a running break?

26 thoughts on “Running Lately

  1. Glad you’re back into the run of things. Nice to take a planned (or unexpected) break every now and then. Have you seen Relentless Forward Motion – The Guide to Running Ultramarathons by Byron Powell. Good stuff. Base building is good. That’s what I am trying to do in January before I kick my marathon/ultra training into high gear.

  2. I have to take a running break each winter – darn midwest climate! As for AdvoCare, definitely only do it for the right reasons. It does make you feel healthy and amazing but it is not a quick fix and shouldn’t be used just as a “weight loss tool” – it is a catalyst to a healthy lifestyle and while losing a little bit of weight is a nice side effect (at least for me!), feeling amazing and making smarter choices are the most important outcomes 🙂

    • It’s definitely something I want to look into, but I know with how I’m feeling right now, I wouldn’t be doing it for the “right” reasons, I’d be doing it for a “quick fix” and that’s not how to do it. Once I’m ready for it – I’ll let you know!

  3. Biggest running hurdle? Naps are awesome, and some days I’d rather do that.

    I think you and I are in very similar situations (screwy training since November, up a few pounds (I’m at 10), and using the Disney races as building blocks), and I think that will be to our absolute benefit in just over four weeks (me? counting? no).

  4. It can be really hard to come back after a hiatus, but hang in there! With ramping up your running and eating healthfully you will start to see improvements. Best of luck training for Disney!

  5. Since my fall marathon I’ve been on my first long break from running in over 3 years. It’s been refreshing to have no schedules to follow and distances to cross off the list. It provided a much needed break for my muscles and joins. Most importantly it reminded me how much I love running! When you’re away from it for awhile you start to crave the movement! My hurdle has been pulling myself away from Netflix… oh and gaining weight that I haven’t seen in years!

    Good for you for taking a break. I find that exercising and eating well come hand-in-hand and I’m sure you’ll start noticing your strength increasing as you prepare for your runs in Disney! Sounds like a lot of fun!

  6. Getting back into running has to be the worst thing ever! Well maybe not worst, but it’s not fun. My biggest tip would be to stick with it, don’t get discouraged as it will take time. But you can do it!

  7. As someone else who is super active but has trouble losing weight it all comes down to eating for me. If you’re not already using it I highly recommend MyFitnessPal. It’s a great way to track your food and calories so you can make sure you’re not eating too big of portions. Calorie counting is the only thing I’ve found that works for me to lose weight!

    • Unfortunately given my history of disordered eating, counting calories is a pretty big trigger for me. I’ve used MFP in the past, and liked it, but I know that it doesn’t take me long to start severely restricting. I’ve spent a lot of time this past year working on learning when I’m truly hungry and did great with it. Stress, booze and sugar (and 6 weeks off running) over Christmas caught up with me, so with those 3 mostly eliminated, I’m pretty sure I’ll be able to lose what I put on.

  8. 5-8 lbs may feel like a lot but really it isn’t. I’m willing to bet you that it will come off rather quickly now that your are back to running and eating clean again. You’ll be great. 🙂

    I spent December in a sedentary position and now that I’m training for ATB I am feeling rather sluggish so I took all of the pressure off of myself for a 3 hour finish, because really the only pressure we have to perform is the pressure we put on ourselves, and I’m now spending my time training for endurance with a goal of finishing.

    • You’re absolutely right that 5-8 pounds really isn’t a lot! And after 6 weeks of doing (literally) nothing, starting running again it shouldn’t take long to get back to where I was.
      I also can put pressure on myself for a certain finish time. I’ve move to the A, B, C goals for races and that really helps to keep things in perspective and that way I always accomplish at least one goal 🙂

  9. That is such a way to put it-when you want to “fix” things not feel better is when you run into trouble. My biggest hurdle when I get back to running after a break is that I feel like I have to take a break after a few miles, whether it’s to breathe, to pee, whatever. I had major surgery in November that has weakened my pelvic floor so now I feel like I have this “excuse” to stop for a potty break every so often. This makes running a full distance at a stretch a challenge and then I feel like it’s because I’m weak as a whole, not because of my limitations. SO glad you’re feeling better about running and it always seems to balance a body out right!

    • Our brains can sometimes be our own worst enemy, for sure. I know running has made me mentally stronger, but man, it sure is easy to convince myself that I’m too _____ to workout today!

  10. I’m going through the same thing with a little weight gain and returning to running after an illness. Luckily I have a dog who needs so much exercise it forces me over my hurdles I’m trying not to put too much pressure with regards to pace but just encouraging myself to get out there and cover the miles and hope the speed comes back over time.

    • I’m sure the pace will come back with time! I’m doing my best to not even think about pace and just to run where I’m comfortable because I know it’ll come back. I’m always comparing myself with myself and that can be frustrating at times.

  11. I love my EnergyNR for on the treadmill!! (I wore them this morning in fact!) They’re super cushy and you can easily run in them with or without the sock liner. I feel the same way about Newtons – someone please just send me the entire line in a size 8. I have a gift card to use up so I’m thinking about getting the Distance Elite as well for my spring races.

    • Yes! I totally want the entire line, too! I’m loving my BOCO AT’s for the snow 🙂
      I’m debating between the Distance Elite and Distance U’s for speedwork and shorter races, but $$! Ha!

  12. Pingback: Link Love: 1/25 | Cowgirl Runs

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