Sunday, May 6, 2012

Knee Pain...Half Marathon...motivation.

Week Recap:
Monday: day off
Tuesday: 20minute tempo (felt good and fit!)
Wednesday: banged knee (see below), 9miles total, 20mile bike 
Thursday: 3x1600, 2x800 (planned 4x1600 but knee dictated my run!)
Friday: planned 6....made it 4 before about crumbling in pain
Saturday: planned 4....made it to 3.5 before the pain set in.
Sunday: Palos 1/2 marathon. More pain than I've ever felt in my life (including running through stress fractures), but pay day so can't complain.

It turns out that I'm more of a klutz than I thought.  I always knew I wasn't graceful,  but Wednesday showed a new side of my klutziness.  Ryan and I received a LARGE (length-wise) package on Wednesday afternoon, filled with sweet new PowerBar backpacks (TYR brand, so super nice).  I was pretty excited to see how they looked since the bike clothes I had received the day before were nice.  I was so excited, in fact, that I couldn't get the box in the door without hurting myself.

Since the box was pretty long (my arms were fully outstretched), it was awkward to bring it in.  I ended up banging my knee REALLY hard on the metal frame of the door.  At first, I just told myself I'm a klutz...and then the pain started to hit.  A neighbor outside walking on the sidewalk outside actually looked to our front door like "what the heck?" because of my scream.  You know that feeling of bumping your elbow on something? Yeah, that's that weird and painful sensation my knee felt. But, I had kids to get to practice so off I went.  

I didn't notice the pain at all on the drive, until I stepped out of the car and almost fell flat on my face.  Guess the knee was hurt. I still decided to bike with the kids as I thought the blood flow might loosen my knee a bit.  I ran 4 miles all pain free after.  I figured my knee pain was gone.

Thursday, I could still feel the pain when I woke at 5am to run, so I opted to run at the kids' practice instead on the treadmills.  The warmup felt fine, so I planned to do the 4x1600 workout as planned.  At about midway through the second 1600, I figured I could probably only do one more before having to switch to 800s with how I was feeling.  The workout itself went well, but having the knee pain be even more intense during the cooldown really scared me.

Friday was a waste.  I felt fine for the first two miles, and gradually my knee pain worsened.  I wanted to get 6 miles in, but just about collapsed after 4 from the shooting pain.  Saturday, I had to lead the Run Club so figured since I hadn't felt any pain Friday during the day, I'd try to see how it felt--bad choice; pain came on around 3.5, so I stopped. 

I wasn't planning on going to the Oswego Wine Festival with my mom, aunt and cousin on Saturday originally, but figured that my knee pain might prevent me from racing anyway on Sunday, so I might as well go enjoy life.  And enjoy we did.  The live bands were awesome (the country one I would almost book for our wedding, that's how good they were--if you're a Carrie Underwood fan...this girl hit her songs PERFECTLY--they're called Jin and Tonic).  The company was awesome.  The wine was awesome.  So it was a pretty good day :)  

I left the wine fest to drive to Orland Park to spend the night with my friend, Sam, from college.  She just graduated from her Master's Program, so I was happy to be able to congratulate her in person!  We stayed up a little too late talking, but it was SOOO good to catch up!

Driving over, I felt pretty good...I could still run a low 1:20s and be happy, I decided.  I started walking over to get my packet, and saw my hs friend Megan Hode!  So random, but such a nice surprise!  Megan ended up with a 2minute PR today, so I am thrilled for her!!!

After getting my packet, warming up, etc., I actually felt ready to go.  The first two miles felt SO easy (except that we were running 6:01 and 6:15) and were pain free, so I knew I was going too fast.  My knee didn't start hurting until about mile 4...and then about a mile later my teammate/friend dropped out.  She was the 4th place female, so I knew I'd be "safe" if I just stayed where I was (in terms of winning prize money-- top 5 receive it).  I was just about to catch her and tell her to rock the race and drop out myself, so when I saw her drop, it gave me the motivation I needed to power through the pain.  

At mile 3, a guy joined me and ran up until mile 6 with me, which was nice to have.  We were talking (he found out about my knee after asking if I was doing okay), laughing, everything was good.  At about the 10k mark, my knee really started becoming painful.  Unfortunately, since this is an out-and-back course, if I was to drop out, it'd be a LONG way back.  Plus, I could see at the turnaround that the 5th place female was only a minute or so back.  I latched onto a guy named Jose who was SO friendly and fun.  I could also see that the 3rd place female was starting to tire a bit.  

She had a friend biking back and forth, kind of updating her on how things were going.  I knew at about mile 8 that she was within striking distance.  I started reminding myself of the $$ we need for our wedding/house and how GREAT that extra $100 would be.  My teammate/friend Rick had been spectating and was now on his bike cheering people on, me being one of them.  He told me that I need to concentrate and go get her.  So, with about a 5k to go, I did just that.  

It's not that I wasn't motivated to catch the 3rd place female before that point, it was honestly the amount of pain was outweighing the care of earning an extra $100.  Yes, that is sad because $100 is a lot of money, but I can't describe the pain I was in.  At about mile 9, I had Jose break off from me because my knee pain was causing me to slow down.  But, once I saw Rick, I knew I could use his encouragement to catch back up to Jose (thanks, Rick:)).  

The best part of the race is that Jose and I pushed each other for the second half of it.  Complete strangers, pushing each other to do their best.  Love it.  

Overall, I ended up finishing 3rd with a time of 1:25:11... last year I was 5th with a 1:24:55 (I had to make a 42 second pit stop in the PortaJohn, whoops), so it was a little disappointing.  Yes, my place improved, but my time doesn't really indicate where I am at in my fitness.  I was literally talking to the first guy or Jose almost the entire race, my breathing wasn't labored, and my legs (besides my knee cap on my right) felt like I was barely moving.  Kind of like how I felt at Milwaukee...yeah, I ran well and even earned prize money, but I'm in better shape than what I'm showing!!! So hopefully, my knee gets better...I met with one of the Athletico people on site after the race and she thinks I just bruised the bone.  The way to heal it? Not run on it.  Biking and swimming should be fine, but no running.  Next week's log might be a little bare;) Palos 1/2 results

Very happy that this was a successful weekend for my friends (those running the marathon or cinco de mile yesterday and those racing today, and of course Sam for graduating from her Masters Program!, and Julie for ROCKING Flying Pig marathon) and family (dad and Nic ran the Indy 1/2 yesterday, cousin Becky graduated college!!).  

Congrats to all of my friends and family who rocked their races this weekend!!!


Kait Comiskey said...

freaking awesome job... way to run through the pain and finish strong. I admire you!

Jack Cruz said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jack Cruz said...

You really did a good job.. keep it up!

knee pain

jacqui said...

Thanks Kait and Jack! Sorry to not respond until now... didn't see it!

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