A member of my family confided in me that she wasn’t sure she liked running…so I thought it would be best to make a post on the Internet about it.
The thing is… running is very hard when you first start. When I started running, I did it because it was the hardest thing I could do. I was never a runner and would be gasping for air within the first quarter of a mile. It’s true! We’ve all been there! For me, my entire first year was painful. It was a constant struggle of being exhausted, out of breath, and every fiber of my being telling me to stop – even while running at what I perceived to be the slower than a brisk walk.
There is light at the end of the tunnel, it just takes time and consistency. The more you run, the more:
1. Your body becomes more efficient and you become able to breath while running. Suddenly it’s not about gasping for air.
2. Your legs will develop all kinds of supportive muscles which will help prevent injuries and let you run longer.
3. You develop body awareness and become able to tell the difference between “I’m hurt” (should stop running) and “it hurts” (I can keep running, it’ll be ok)
4. You develop mental toughness. Once you’ve been to the edge – and lived, you know what it feels like and know you can keep going
It didn’t happen for me when I was struggling for my first 5k. At the shorter distances, it was all painful and hard for me. It wasn’t until I really committed to it and went out to prove something to myself. A year of running over 25 miles a week and it changed me. I found a Zen-like state when the pain would turn off and I felt good while I ran.
So – don’t give up! It will happen! Just be consistent and keep at it! Believe me, running has changed my life…I’m glad I kept at it.
I’m a bit behind in my blogging and twitter over the holidays, and wanted to get a post just to let everyone know I’m still here – and I’m still alive
I also wanted to share part of my master plan for 2012… Here are my resolutions for the year:
That’s it! I’ll get to it and hope you do the same! Anyone else have some resolutions? What are they? Anything I can do to help?
Well, it’s official, I’m have a grade 1 soleus strain. For a midfoot/forefoot striker, this is usually caused by three things: 1. running on hard surfaces 2. increasing weekly mileage and 3. running hills. All my runs that week were on concrete and I had a tough hill workout and then a long run of increasing distance. It was a mistake doing both in the same week (and in new shoes). I can reflect all day on how my ego drove me to think I’d be fine doing that but thought I’d use a blog post to talk about how to deal with running injuries.
At some point, almost every runner gets injured and it can be frustrating to miss workouts and VERY worrisome when you’re trying to build up for an event.
1. First things first, figure out what’s wrong! Put some real thought into how/when/where the pain is. How does it feel when you put weight on it? stand? walk? flex and extend your foot? Try to do everything you can to really narrow down EXACTLY where the pain is. If you can pinpoint it, you can more accurately figure out what is wrong and what to do about it.
2. Do some research. Odds are, some other runner has gone through the same thing! You can see the anatomy, understand what muscle/tendons/joints are involved. Check out livestrong.com, WebMD.com, everydayhealth.com, and even wikipedia for some good overviews of anatomy. If you are able to narrow it down to a particular problem or tendon, do some searches on that specific problem and “running.” You will often be surprised by the depth and discussion available.
3. Many injuries follow RICE: Rest, Ice, Compression, and Elevation. This is usually most important in the first 5 days and it will REALLY help! At this point, you should also realize that you will not lose any fitness in the first 10 to 14 days NSAIDs like Advil are also great, but I suggest always taking with food.
4. After a couple days, evaluate where you’re at. Hopefully a couple days off will be fine and you’re able to run again. If there is still pain (like where I’m at now), change up the workout schedule. Biking and swimming doesn’t seem to bother my injury, so I’m going to supplement my cardio with intense biking and swimming workouts. If you still want to build running, consider underwater treadmill or pool running. The underwater treadmills are hard to come by, and usually charge an hourly rate, but are pretty awesome and allow you to run on a treadmill with a fraction of the impact. I’ve spent more time in a pool with an underwater running belt (like an aquajogger, which many pools/gyms have available for use!). The running belts are pretty awesome, they hold you upright with your head above the water. You just stand int he deep end and move your arms and legs. There is a good chance this will allow you to “run” in place without any of the impact of the road.
Last, a note about schedules. You won’t lose any fitness in the first two weeks, every week after that is about 10% with no exercise. Just stay on it with cycling or swimming and you’ll be fine If it’s near a big event… it’s hard to say it, but there will always be another event. If you push it in an event, you will likely make the injury much worse and could be out for weeks (or months). I’d rather miss the upcoming half marathon and be able to run a couple fulls later this year!
Let me know if there are any injuries you’ve had to deal with, How long did it take to get over them? Find anything that really helped?