I'm not going to sugarcoat this.....after my second marathon in a month (Indy), I got really lazy. I had just almost tied my marathon PR, got married, ran a marathon PR...I deserved a break.
However, I told myself that one too many times. I completely believe in taking a week of recovery after a marathon. That's totally normally and definitely deserved. Except when it then becomes abused. The Saturday after the marathon, I ran what would have been a 5k PR, so figured that I could just keep training since it was obviously working for me.
I started biking more so that I would relieve my legs a little, but I still kept up the intensity and scheduled workouts every so often. Cari is currently not coaching me as my goals are different for 2013....she'll be my coach again as soon as my goal is met, which will hopefully be October 2013 (more on that to come in my next post).
As great as it was that I was now cross training, I was still NOT doing some very important things: strength training, massage, extra stretching. These things were the staples that have kept me injury free for so long.
Last week, my shins began feeling really sore. I only ran three days (one of them on Thanksgiving, of course) to attempt to heal my shins. It worked, but apparently I compensated a bit while running on either Tuesday, Thursday or Saturday.
This past Tuesday, I went to do a workout on the treadmill and my plantar fascia on my left foot was just killing me. I did two of my mile repeats because the pain was barely noticeable when I would go harder. Well, it worked until I had to get off the treadmill....once I got back on, my plantar fascia just screamed at me. I knew I had to call it a day and just bike. I immediately texted Dave Davis, massage therapist expert, and set up an appointment with him.
WHY DID IT TAKE ME THIS LONG?!
I would get massages religiously throughout my training for the Trials. Dave was one of the critical people that were keeping me injury free...and just because the marathons were over, I could cut him off? I am one of those people that believe everything happens for a reason. My plantar flared up to remind me of the importance of stretching, strength training, and massage. Ironically, I was at LifeTime (running my workout on the treadmill) for the sole reason of lifting after my run, so it worked out, just a little more painfully than what had to be.
SO, to recap: while running a marathon is a HUGE accomplishment, don't let it be an excuse to take too much time off of things you should continue doing. This will only set you back, after you've worked SO hard.
I've also decided that not only will I focus more on my stretching, strength training and massage, but I will also be watching more of what I eat. When I was training for the Trials, I had an unreal amount of self control: I only ate healthy foods (barely anything processed, good portions) and truly saw a difference in how I felt on my runs. All runs just felt SO easy and smooth....yes, it's the holiday season, but if I have these big goals I want to accomplish in 2013, I need to start working my way towards them right now.
I am going to try to post more frequently on here, in hopes that people who read this DO hold me accountable. I know next time Ryan (who chooses to read this, I'm always surprised when he tells me something about it as I never tell him when I post) sees me eyeing a cookie or some ice cream, he'll call me out on it and remind me that I have BIG GOALS for 2013. Do the same--hold those you care about accountable. Motivation is extremely hard to hang onto near the end of the year. If we can help each other, we will all be so much more successful (and, in turn, happy!).
GOOD LUCK as we approach the holidays. Hopefully some motivation to follow in my next post.