Friday, March 27, 2009
I think I'm truly becoming a runner... I'm going through all the injuries and coming out okay on the other side. I look forward to the day that all my muscles have adjusted and strengthened and I can just run, run, run and feel a-okay at the end!
I pretty much avoided the usual new-runner's issue of shin splints. This was thanks to the necessity to take it slow since I started in cardiac rehab and they will make you stop if you do too much! Since I couldn't run, they would take the incline up on the treadmill in order to get my heart rate up. This long slow build-up of walking briskly at an increasing incline trained my shins well enough that when I was allowed to run, my shins were ready. :)
Then I learned the value of a good pair of running shoes! Next injury was a strained calf. Not just once, but THREE times before it struck me that it was my shoes! Rest (ugh) and new shoes and now, no more calf strains. :)
However, a new pair of shoes every 5-6 months is pricey! But money WELL spent.
Then, OMG, this muscle deep in my glute! I learned all about the piriformis... I got one good deep muscle massage (thanks mom for picking up that tab!), ran through it while focusing on adding glute strengthening exercises and lots of stretching (man does that feel good!). A few months later, my glute rarely bothers me anymore. The muscle is strong enough now to do what I ask it to do. What I've been asking it to do is run for about 30-35 minutes straight 2-3 times a week.
Most recently, I learned more about my iliopsoas, or uh, hip flexor muscle. I made another rookie mistake and changed two things at once. I had good intentions though. I had a goal to run a 5k (this weekend actually) and so in preparation I did two things - I got a new pair of running shoes about a month prior AND I moved my runs outside. Bad idea. The combination lead to hip pain. Ugh!!!
I took a week off of running, which felt like an eternity, lemme tell ya, once you get the running bug it SUCKS not to run! From everything I read, the iliopsoas inflammation can turn into a pretty icky chronic problem so I took the time to rest and let it heal. Last night, I hit the gym in my new shoes, figuring I'd take a test run on the treadmill. I did two five minute intervals which felt easy but by the end of the second interval I felt my hip nagging me a little so I decided against my planned third running interval. It felt good. No pain when I stopped at all!
So, I think I've made it through this last little injury. I just have to build my running back up slowly and see how my psoas does. Yeah. No 5k this weekend. :(
But, that's cool, there will be future 5ks!