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Marathon Training Week 5: Going Up to Eleven.

August 30, 2016

Ok, so I skipped week 4. That’s because nothing really happened. My hip has been bothering me, so I just did a few 5 mile runs instead of one longer one. I guess I could have written about that, but other than testing out my new compression shorts and finding that they felt great while simultaneously cutting off some of the circulation to my lower leg, these were some virtually uneventful runs.

IMG_7084

New gear, new me.

Truthfully, even today’s run of 11 miles was not all that eventful. It was long. It was not quite as hot though, so that REALLY helped (as did my “summer hits of the 90’s” pandora station). The park was not that crowded, there were only about 3 other runners I crossed paths with for the entire time (and I was out there for close to 2 hours when all was said and done) so there weren’t really even many people for me to potentially interact with. I had no great revelation, or life changing idea. I just ran. And ran. And ran.

The only thing worth mentioning is that this is the first run where I’ve actually experienced some real pain both during and after. I have a relatively high tolerance for pain, which you’d never guess if you saw how much I fear needles, bees, wasps or anything that could sting me – I rear ended someone once because there was a bee in my car. Thankfully there was no damage. The cars were fine too (ba dum tss). Anyway, as I mentioned, my hip has been bugging out – my left hip to be specific. I’ve been doing all sorts of stretches, yoga, heating pads, icing, purchasing fancy compression shorts – you name it – and although these things are helping a little, they are not helping as much as I would like.

I ran one mile, and my hip already started to twinge a bit. But I had set out to do 11 miles, and by golly, 11 was what I was going to do (otherwise I wouldn’t have been able to use the witty blog post title I came up with) so I forced my self to keep going.

The good news was that the pain peaked around 3 miles and really just stayed the same for the rest of the run, without getting any worse. The bad news is that there was any pain at all. Usually I can think while I run about the universe, life, how to make myself a better human – but every time I started to hedge on that altered state, my darn hip snapped me right out of it. I eventually settled on thinking about work, because I knew that was at least something I could completely focus on and put the hip out of my head. But even my go-to work thoughts were only partially working. I was able to think about work for quarter mile intervals, and then my thoughts ultimately went back to my pain. Or more specifically, what will happen if the pain doesn’t go away or gets worse.

Last year was supposed to be my first marathon. I trained for one week, and wound up with tendinitis in my left ankle. I basically couldn’t run at all for months (although I did a little bit anyway – it’s that tolerance for pain thing, combined with my complete lack of patience for the healing process). I was so unbelievably bummed about the marathon. There were many tears shed. It took over 6 months to completely heal. At one point, I wondered if it would ever really heal or if it would heal but keep coming back. So far, I have not experienced it since, and I’ve changed my running shoes and done stretches to prevent it. However, once my ankle healed and I could run again, I began having issues with my hips. At first, it went back and forth – one would hurt, than it would feel better, and the other one would hurt. I began to wonder if it had something to do with changing the way I ran due to the ankle injury. That is entirely possible (according to my husband, who is like the human version of the internet). I decided that the hip pain wasn’t all that bad, and I could still run with it, so I went ahead and signed up for another marathon this year, deciding that THIS WOULD BE MY YEAR.

THIS WOULD BE MY YEAR. That’s what ran through my mind as I battled with my left hip today. “Stop it, hip!” I shouted and punched it with my fist (yes, I really did this – no wonder no one wanted to interact with me). I kept going up to 11, because I refuse to let another year and another marathon come and go without me in it. THIS WILL BE MY YEAR. I am not only going up to 11, I’m going up to 26.2 whether my left hip likes it or not.

Once I get it done, I’ll rest – but not until then, and only then. Looks like I’ll be investing in a few more pairs of compression shorts….

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