Training Log: Time for Rest and Recovery

For the last ten days, I’ve been hit and miss with running.  Even though it wasn’t a half marathon PR, I felt strong during the Atlantic City half.  Unforatenly,  I haven’t felt good since.  Both mentally and physically!

Training Log: Time for Rest and Recovery

After Shamrock half marathon a month ago, I began to have hamstring problems.  My hamstring was tight; it hurt after 10 miles but it never altered my stride.  Luckily with a couple of visits, it went away.  I ran the April Fools half with no issues.

Then last week I began to have foot pain.  It was a pain that was dull in the arch, and I noticed it at the end of my workout.  I couldn’t pinpoint the pain, but I knew it was there.  Sometimes it was sharp and sometimes dull.

I had two gut reactions:

  • Stress fracture
  • The beginning of plantar fasciitis (which I’ve had)

I scheduled another deep tissue massage on Thursday.  If it was plantar fasciitis, the deep tissue massage would help.  If it was a stress fracture, it would not help at all, but it would also be too painful.  Luckily, I had a sneaking suspicion it was a mild case of plantar fasciitis.  The deep tissue massage was perfect and targeted exactly what I needed to get done: (IE: my feet and legs).

On Friday, I ran, and while I felt sore, I didn’t feel my foot.  So for obvious reasons, we can rule out a stress fracture.

Then on Saturday, I ran the “Totally Awesome 80s Run”.  In summary, my legs were extremely sore and tight from the deep tissue massage.  I’ve wanted to do this race all month because I enjoy themed runs.  I decided to take the race easier. My goal was run around a 20:00 5k, but I surpassed that and ran an issueless 19:10.  Not my fastest but I’ll take healthy running at this point.

totally awesome 80s run

Yesterday, I began my run. However, something felt off.  The same foot was having issues, and I got very uncomfortable running on it.  I stopped my run early and went home.  After thinking about it, I also decided it’s best for me to rest completely.

So where does this take me?

I’ve taken a lot of rest lately.  I’ve backed off my training a lot and haven’t been as consistent as when I was running faster times last month.  At this point, it’s better for me to take a break versus decided each morning whether I’m going to run.

I’m at the point that I’ve gotten a couple of smaller issues that could escalate into something bigger.  Backing off is the best thing I can do right now.  I know when I begin to have one issue, I have several.  I’m not worried about either my hamstring (that is 100% better) and while my foot feels off, it doesn’t hurt.

I’m worried that I’ve begun to cascade smaller injuries on top of each other which, for me, typically leads to a larger issue that prevents me from running. I’ve running well for about a year without any significant breaks from running.

I don’t want to have another stress fracture or even a stress fracture scare so resting like the logical thing to do.  This week I backed off in mileage and intensity, and I will do the same until after the Broad Street 10 miler.

Outside of the minor issues, most days I’ve mentally struggled to get out of the door.  I’m not an elite athlete so there is no point to keep forcing myself into a supposedly enjoyable hobby. My hopeful goal is to come back feeling refreshed and take care of any small pains that have gone away.

I’m going to take completely off of running until at least Thursday.  I’ll readjust and reevaluate from there.  

Questions for you:

Do you find larger injuries start with smaller aches and pains?

Do you prefer “themed races” or a standard timed race?