That which does not kill us, makes us stronger. - Nietzsche

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Pain is temporary.....but still very painful!

I feel somewhat defeated.

My weekend was fantastic. As a chance to let the shin splints ease up, though, it was a bit of a fail. I forgot how much walking a person can do in NYC. And since I'm an excitable girl from the midwest, I wanted to see EVERYTHING. OMG...let's walk to Times Square. Now let's explore Central Park. Hey, Greenwich Village...that doesn't look far on the map!!

Shin splints, as it turns out, aren't super discriminatory between walking and running. Any weight-bearing movement keeps them alive.

So I hurt when I came back. And I was itching to run after my long travel day Monday - I hate flying anyway, so after a  flight cancellation and having to tango with Delta, I was a bit unnerved. What do I do when I'm unnerved? I run! Three miles on the gym track - what will that hurt? Oh, let's do one of them as fast as I can (magic mile test!) to see where my pace is.

Not my best idea ever. For the record, my magic mile pace (with shin splints and blood donation 4 days prior) was 8:46. I'll take that.

OK, soooo....I hurt after that. I did yoga, and I still hurt after yoga. I woke up and I hurt. I was walking and I hurt, and I blamed it on my adorable but arch support-less boots. (note: not the ones I wore in NYC. Those are supportive. The ones I wore today are purely fashion, not particularly useful.)

So anyway....I hurt. So this morning I taped up my shins with KT tape (which is good stuff - I used it on my knee for the USAF half) to see if that would help. They still hurt all day. You'd think that would be enough to teach me. Nope. I decided to test the tape to see if it would help while I run! I also decided to try ace bandaging the particularly painful one. It did seem to help once I removed the boots and bandaged the shin.

I did have the good sense to skip the group tonight. I figured if I had to turn back, I'd be much more likely to do so if I was running by myself, and I figured I'd be much better at pacing by myself. They were doing hill repeats, so I figured out a new route that's rather hilly. I did kinda have to talk myself mentally into running, although that was easier after the running clothes went on.

.6 miles in, my bandaged leg was going numb. I stopped, loosened the ace bandage (no small feat rolling running tights up high enough to do that) and started up again. I hurt but it was manageable. I started up the first hill. Much less manageable. I hit a mile and gave up. Why do I run? I asked myself. Because it's FUN! is the obvious answer. Is this fun?? NO. This is hell and this is pain and this is not the kind of pain that means I'm getting stronger. This is the kind of pain that I am only making worse.

Mind you, I'd like to think I have a pretty high pain tolerance. It takes a lot for me to give up. But tonight, I needed to be done. I did make it home. I'm walking with a limp. I'm icing the owieness. I have peas on one shin and carrots on the other - if nothing else, I make a healthy side dish. I am not running again until the 10k. I will do circuit class in the morning - if I feel up to it - and I will go ridiculously easy on the leg exercises. I will cross train on Thursday. Even if a miracle happens and I wake up feeling like I have bionic shins, I'm benched until Saturday.

And at that, if I can't run Saturday and I have to DNS it, oh well. I didn't pay for the race registration anyway. I NEED to recover from this if I'm going to do 26.2 and enjoy it - which is my ultimate goal.

I also signed up for a slot at the free injury clinic at the running store Thursday. I have to try to release myself from work early and I can't guarantee I'll be able to make it on time....but I'll do my best.

Aleve, ice massages, foam rolling, stretching, taping, bandaging, this all-natural muscle healing massage oil I bought from a cool store in NYC....something should work here! Training your body to run 26 miles when it feels GOOD is difficult would be really nice at least if parts of it weren't in agony.


  1. It's tough sometimes to distinguish good pain (sore muscles from a good workout) from bad pain (injury). But the bad pain is telling you to STOP and BACK OFF for now. Injuries suck, huh?

  2. Oh no! I'm so sorry your legs aren't feeling any better yet :(

    Good for you, listening to your body and taking a seat for now. You'll get through this minor setback and come out even better on the other side. Think of it as a super down week, you're going to be doing some awesome recovering.

  3. The thought that's keeping me positive: if I can run this far and this fast while I'm injured, imagine what I'll do after I give these bad boys a chance to heal!!! :)