From Limping to Long Runs (39 miles)

I think this is 6 weeks to go.  Everything seems to be blending together since moving. 

To be completely honest last week after my 20 mile run, my left (and more dominate) knee started to get a “niggle”.  It felt pretty tight and by the evening last Sunday I was limping.  I had planned to take Monday off from running (like I do after long runs) but with every step my knee seemed to get worse. By Sunday evening I had thrown myself a huge pity party and was in the pits.

 I went through a lot of thoughts like my marathon training is over, I can’t catch a break, this is my first running injury in quite some time, how did it happen…ect.  I hadn’t felt a pop during training nor had I done anything stupid in regards to training. I took Monday off and scheduled a deep tissue massage on Tuesday.  By Tuesday my entire upper thigh was more sore and hurt.  I gave myself a time limit that if I was not running in two weeks I was not going to push myself to get back into the groove for the marathon.  (read: I would DNS New York).

The deep tissue massage was one of the most painful massages I’ve ever gotten.  The lady was the best at getting painfully deep into every muscle I had.  She left me sore everywhere and only wanting to lay in bed.

On Thursday I went for a 6.65 mile untimed run on the flattest areas of town.  I wasn’t sure how this would go but my knee didn’t seem to get any worse or better.  It stayed the same which was still better then Sunday. 

Training for the week:


20 mile run

Knee pain during: Not felt, possibly due to adrenine knee pain a few hours afterwords: limping (10)



Knee pain: limping and upper thigh pain (10)


Elliptical/cross train and deep tissue massage

Before: Knee pain able to walk still hurts, thigh pain hurts (8) After massage: Everything is sore


Elliptical/cross train (I chose machines that didn’t hurt or make anything worse)

Overall soreness from massage (everything 7)


Elliptical/cross train and 6.65 mile run

Greatest day of improvement no thigh pain and knee 5..while running knee was 5


Elliptical/cross train and 15 minute core work

Knee pain: 3


Run 12.1 miles

Knee pain:3


Long Run 20.36 miles

Knee pain: 2


39 miles miles



On Sunday I decided to switch my shoes and look for more flat terrain to run on.  If my knee progressively got worse during the run then I would stop.  I was going to stop the moment it got worse.  The first couple of miles went by quickly and as I continued to run I noticed my knee pain was actually going away.  By mile 16 my pain was almost completely gone.  I am hoping my pain stemmed from a bad pair of Newton Gravities and possibly the titled terrain here. 

There were also some huge differences between this long run and last weeks long run:

Last week: I thought I was going to die after mile 12.  It was hot, hard and I was slogging through the final miles.  I honestly don’t think I could have run any further if I had tried.  When I came home I was incoherent and just layed down for 20 minutes.  After this weeks long run: I felt strong and like I could keep going.  My last few miles were well below a 7:30 pace.  I was talking to Tim the entire time (he rode his bike).  I felt strong and I might have been able to finish a marathon. 

Overall training thoughts of this week:

I am so glad I took that time off and am healthy again.  It sucked, it was hard and made me question everything about my training but I’m now 5 weeks away and healthy as opposed to 6 weeks away and unable to walk.

As you can see (and I wrote each of these daily to keep myself in check) my knee progressively got better throughout the week.  If I had not rested and decided to run Monday-Thursday I do not think it would have gotten better.  I would still be injured.

I’ll be the first to tell you I was a hot mess this week.  I was a big pile of emotion wondering if my marathon training was out the door.  I had flashbacks from last year with my cyst and watching my training go away.  It doesn’t really help that I don’t have a job so I get to sit here and fester on my injury as opposed to staying occupied. 

Questions for you:

Ever had those niggle pains?  Do you run through?

What is your cross training method of choice? 


  1. “She left me sore everywhere and only wanting to lay in bed.”

    That is all.

    (Oh and glad to hear your knee is holding up)

  2. Freaking beast of a week. From a crazy knee to rnning 20+ and feeling like you could keep going. If that’s not motivating, I don’t know what is…

  3. Phew! Close call. I’ve been injured for so long that just thinking about cross training makes me nauseated, but I’ve done pool running or biking. I think I need to learn to swim!

  4. Oye, stressful week! I am glad the pain is going away a bit. My wobbly pains will typically be my ankle, shins, or knees. For some reason I have a wonky step at the start of about a third of my runs and end up with shooting ankle pain for a few minutes and then it goes away. In general (if it is not my knee) I will run through whatever the problem is and by 2 or 3 miles it goes away. If it hasn’t at that point I will throw in the towel.

    Favorite cross train would be rowing right now. For some reason I just loathe the elliptical. I feel like an uncoordinated donkey when I am on it.

  5. So happy to hear your knee is getting better! I hope the pain level keeps improving (healing vibes being sent your way!) It was so smart to schedule the massage! Sometimes one little muscle can mess up everything, people sit around and worry about it instead of doing something about it! Way to be proactive!

    Sometimes I get random aches and pains during marathon training but not really at a high pain level… I’m sure that was VERY SCARY!! You have had quite the crazy cycle leading up to NYCM! Maybe that means great things are to come. 🙂

    It’s great that you were able to finish a strong 20 yesterday!! Keep me posted!

  6. I’m so glad the rest helped, even though it was harder than running 20 miles. You’re smart to listen to your body and not ignore the aches and pains.

  7. We were emotional messes together this week, rocking the whole twinerz status from many miles away. I’m glad things are getting better and that you had a solid 20 mile run, things can only go up from here 🙂

  8. Being unemployed definitely allows you to sit and just dwell on everything possible. It’s been a long year since I’m no longer in school. As soon as I saw “knee” in this post, I just wanted to cry for you but I’m glad it’s gotten better throughout the week! You’re a smart girl for cross-training. Running kudos to you! 🙂

  9. I’m a huge believer in rest if it’s anything other than just regular muscle pains. I was that way with CrossFit as well. If anything seemed “off,” I’d rest until it went away. I think people do way too much damage trying to push through an injury. I constantly get onto my friend because she has hurt her knee and continues to try and train on it! I keep telling her to STOP and let it heal so that she can go back for good and not have to have continued pain. It drives me crazy! I’m glad you’re back on schedule! I’m excited to hear about how the marathon is in FIVE weeks!

  10. Ugh, I know all about those niggle pains! They always seem to happen at the END of a training cycle, too! I usually freak the freak out and try to rest and cross train. My fave way to cross train? Swimming 🙂

  11. Good to hear you are on the mend. It is so stressful to begin feeling niggling pains, not know what it is, and then overanalyzing every little thing you do. But, it’s always best to listen to your body.

    I have had little pains here in there and have one no win my heel. Not plantar fasciitis but more around my heel cup. Could be Achilles strain, I don’t really know. It actually gets a little better as I move around and is stiff the first thing in the morning, I am RICEing and making sure that rest means rest and nothing else.

    1. That is the worst. When you don;t know where or why they are coming you don’t know how to fix them. That is how I personally get the most stressed out!

  12. You were so smart! I used to push through it.. and had to pull out of what would have been my first marathon several years ago. I just took a similar week to back off and feel great again. It’s crazy how that little bit of rest can make a huge difference when you catch it soon enough and take it seriously!

  13. I know you hate this phrase, but “listening to your body” (;)) was a smart idea. I’ve been feeling achy lately, and I’m almost certain it’s because I’m due for a new pair of sneakers.

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