After taking a week off from any activity, I went out early Monday morning for a little shuffle and everything hurt. My feet hurt, my calves, quads, hip flexors, lower back - you name it and it was barking at me the whole time. I changed my route to 4 miles from 5 and gutted it out. I did feel better the longer I went but was glad to just get it done. I thought that was the end of these aches and pains, figuring I just needed to work them out, that it was a necessary passageway back to the workout program.
The cause of such discomfort, in hindsight, was surely more than
just taking a week off. Much more likely was that I slowed down long
enough for my body to finally start to truly recover from the very
challenging year I put it through and Monday's run was a disruption to
that process. Much like waking someone from a really deep sleep (where
you wake up groggy and wondering where you are), I jump started myself
back into a routine prematurely. Even worse, just 100 yards into
Tuesdays run I sprinted to make the light and that set me up as my calf started to tighten shortly after. Exactly
half way through a 5 mile run my oh-so-common calf injury reoccurred
and it brought me to a screeching halt. The only option was to walk the
next 2.5 miles back to the car, into the wind, on a chilly evening, in
shorts and a t - can you say brrrrrr...
So whats next? Is that going to grind me into a grumpy, sedentary
pulp? Absolutely not! Did I have a bad evening? Yes. But at the pool Wednesday morning one of the regulars asked how I was and before I could
launch into a diatribe about my injury I realized I was talking to a man
with only one leg. A one legged guy who swims four days a week. How
dare I bring up a sore calf!
Instead I shut up and got in the water. As I swam it occurred to me
that I went thru 9 months of crazy training for the Ultra, running
distances and weekly totals I'dnever seen before, and did it all
without injury. I recalled having people praying for my poison ivy
covered feet the week before the race, and waking up race morning
without even a spot on either foot. My mind wondered to my crew (wife,
kids, sister, friends), my pacers and my cause which propelled me to
the finish - and hopefully also benefited from the experience. And then
I thought, "man, it feels good to be in the water again..."
So what say you? How's your training going? Need a little
motivation? How 'bout you share your excuse with me and maybe I can
provide a little mindset recalibration (i.e. a kick in the butt :-) Trust me, the more I try, the more I realize there are no good excuses.
Press on friends.