February 24, 2004 at 5:20 am #1232
This forum is by far my favorite on the net because of all the usefull advice and friendly runner folk, but there just isn’t enough posting going on. I aim to fix all that. I’m going to try to post something every day or two in hopes of sparking some conversation…hopefully this will get this forum pumping again. So, without further hesitation, some random thoughts for your entertainment and consideration…
I am currently building my mileage back up after taking too much time off over christmas break. My last 3 weeks have been in the mid-40’s which is about as high as I’ve ever been, though I do plan to keep climbing. At this point I do only singles and plan to stay with singles for as long as possible. A question…how high can you go running only once per day? How high have you gone?
Depressing thought of the day (for me at least): I was talking with one of my former wrestling teammates today and he commented how his 5:20 marathon ranked him higher then me over the marathon distance since I am 0 for 2 (one injury, one sickness). I have run 1:31:35 for the half and we both know that he couldn’t stay with me over any distance, but it is still depressing that he is, technically speaking, ranked higher then me for the marathon.
Encouraging thought of the day: If you ever feel a little down because there are so many people out there who are faster then you (if you’re American it is almost certainly true) go to a local gym and do a treadmill run. While you buzz through an hour to an hour and a half watch how many sets of people cycle through the aerobic area. Considering most never come close to a serious pace and the fact that you may see 3-4 sets of people come and go, it will make you realize that you are in the elite when it comes to fitness. Whether you run 15:00 for the 5K or not, all serious runners put in far more work then most of the rest. Just remember that, you are a noble athlete working to better yourself while the rest of America (and much of the rest of the world) continues to fatten up. Keep up the good work!
February 24, 2004 at 1:34 pm #13430
it’s tough to realize that while ‘in theory’ you’re faster when you haven’t posted a marathon finish and your slow friend has…
my shoe is on the other foot… my 16 year old is LOTS faster than I am and that’s great… but he’s never raced more than a five miler faster than me… heck, he’s never raced more than a five miler…
someday he’ll run longer races (I hope) and it won’t even take much effort on his part ot do better than me… but for right now he’s proud of his mom… I may be slow but I am a marathoner… so I am a “relatively fast” marathoner, that is, faster than all my realtives 😉
February 24, 2004 at 2:04 pm #13431
Hey, I’m right with you on the training. I finally got a 50 mile week in last week. My winter has absolutely sucked, one set-back after another. It’s all changing now, though. Time to get serious.
Unfortunately for you, your friend is technically a better marathoner than you at the moment. You know that will change, though.
It is important to keep everything in perspective at times. While I tend to focus on looking the other way, people think I’m some kind of hot shot because I can win some low-key local race, I keep pointing out that I am nowhere in the league of some runners out there. There is a wide range of runners. While I think maybe one or two of us here qualify as fast, we are all relatively fast. Don’t just think about those people in the fitness center. Think about the 95% of Americans for whom walking from the couch to the fridge is an aerobic workout. Simply by being a runner, you are a relative elite in this country. Maybe not an elite runner but very fit compared to most Americans.
February 24, 2004 at 3:37 pm #13432
Awesome, a post where we can talk about whatever we want. I am so in the mood to whine about my running. After 5 weeks in a row around 40 miles, which is the most I have ever done, I have become a victim of my own stupidity. 2 days ago during my long run, I felt some mild ITB pain for the last few miles. Then yesterday, during the last half of an easy 6-miler, the pain got pretty bad. Running the last few miles despite some bad pain? Stupid. But guess what, that wasn’t enough. Today I was scheduled to run a hard interval workout on the track, and despite hurting from the first step of my warmup, I went ahead and did the workout anyway. I made it through 3 1200’s, hitting my goal time despite the pain, and then my leg just refused to go anymore at the end of the first lap of my 4th repeat. Like an achilles problem I’ve had the past few years (missed step going downstairs at my apartment), I believe this ITB problem to be the indirect result of a non-running related injury. I stepped wrong at work and sprained my knee, and couldn’t run at all for over a month.
Now I can look forward to some serious time off, and will in all likelihood miss a 10K that I was really looking forward to (Carl Lewis will be there, great Mexican food after race, interesting part of town to run in, etc). Unless, of course, I magically recover in the next 10 days. Literally everything was going right with my running until this happened… my motivation, enjoyment, volume, intensity, results, everything.
Deep down I knew not to run today. I hate the fact that I can run through about 75% of injuries just fine… little to no missed time, recovery just by becoming aware of the problem and icing, extra stretching, etc. Then when a real injury comes along, I try the same approach and get burned. While some people will back off immediately at the first sign of pain, I find that I won’t be running much at all if I take this approach. Oh well, hopefully this will be a learning experience.
On the bright side, I am only on my 8th week of a 16-week Jack Daniels 5K training program and have already surpassed my time goals for this “season”. Going sub-20 in a 5K is still a possibility. Also, this time off will give me a chance to rest a minor injury (quadricep tendonitis), and my achilles is holding up just fine (for the first time in 3+ years). Hopefully this setback will turn out to be a blessing in disguise.
JCW, I’d probably start doubling here and there when it got to the point where I had to run over an hour at a time during easy runs. Like maybe around 60 miles/week or so. Else I’d feel like I was doing a long run every day. I would like to point out that I have absolutely zero personal experience here.
Finally, since I’m in such a great mood, I am going to have to disagree with the whole idea that we should think of ourselves as elite as far as fitness goes. Is it just me, or does anyone else feel totally uninspired when looking at our success in this light? It’s kind of like when I’m eating something that tastes awful and someone points out that a starving kid in Africa would love to have this cold, rubbery Shake-and-Bake pork chop that I’m trying to stomach. It’s kind of hard to disagree with, but my mind immediately drifts to something more pleasant. Kind of like right now… I’m going to stop ranting and go calculate exactly how many times Bekele would have lapped me in his 12:49 indoor wr, how many years it will take me to reach the lifetime mileage of a 19-year old elite Kenyan, and how many people on this planet can dust me in a 5K (no percentages or relative perspective… just a big, fat, ugly number). Seriously though, I am quite happy with where I am even if I never get a second faster.
February 24, 2004 at 3:40 pm #13433
BTW, the “guest” who ranted forever was me. Not sure why I got logged out.
February 24, 2004 at 6:02 pm #13434
great… I could use a place to vent a little too… I’m actually recovered but a week and a half ago… the morning of my first 10K for this year … I bent over to get the cat, who scooted, I twisted and couldn’t straighten up…
who cares if it was five weeks before my spring marathon, mileage looking good, speedwork coming along… even my 11year-old laughed at me.. but a week of walking with a small bit of jogging, some elliptical work and a massage (ice, ibuprofen then later, heat)… did it all and it’s better…
the WORST part was listening to all the people who never work out say things like “see how unhealthy running is”… right
February 24, 2004 at 6:57 pm #13435
Mark, I know sometimes running really sucks like that, but hopefully you’ll come through all right. Sorry about the injury. As for thinking of ourselves as elite…that is just a thought I use when I feel down because KB would have lapped me so many times last week. Its nice to know that, even though there are many many people out there who are better then me, there are many many more that dont even bother to try. I’m all for pushing to get better and taking inspiration from those who set the bar higher then we ever thought to, but sometimes you have to remember that just getting out there and going for it is a victory in itself. Its a poor substitute for a 12:49 5K, but for most of us we’ll have to take what we can get (for now).
I’m glad this post is taking off and glad to hear I’m not the only one whos struggling to get better, though I wish all of you more success in the future then it seems you are experiencing now. Heal up everyone and keep running (except you Mark, you stop and heal first)!
February 24, 2004 at 8:56 pm #13436
Mark, sorry to hear the injury. I know oh so well what you are talking about. I thought I could run through a “little thing” last year about this time and ended up wasting the whole year. Hopefully, this doesn’t hit you as hard as what hit me.
I also understand your point about the “fitness elite” thing. It’s just a feel good way to look at things. Overall, I’d much rather focus on who’s faster than me and what I’m going to do to become faster than those who are currently faster than me. However, at times, it is good to take a step back and realize where we came from. Just don’t get stuck in that mode or your progress may also get stuck.
February 26, 2004 at 9:32 pm #13437
I am feeling much better about my injury. As expected, the side of my knee swelled up pretty bad. I’ve been doing nothing but RICE the past couple days and the swelling is going down slowly but surely. Once the swelling is gone, I’ll add some light stretching and exercises. I don’t really expect to be able to run for at least another couple weeks. From what I’ve read, ITB injuries are unlikely to come back if you let them heal properly, so that’s encouraging! Anyway, thanks for the kind words on this matter.
As far as the “elite” level of fitness, I understand how important it can be at times to look at ourselves this way. Yesterday my boss noticed that my weight was down quite a bit, and out of concern, she asked why. I explained that I have been running quite a bit lately. Her next question was “How far can you run?”. Since I’m used to people asking how fast I can run a mile, a 5K, etc. I was kinda confused and just said “Well, I guess about as far as I want, but I usually race between 3-6 miles”. She was visibly surprised, and seemed to think it was pretty cool that I actually liked to run (or perhaps she was just relieved that I wasn’t losing weight as a result of stimulant abuse). I was feeling discouraged before this conversation, and it really made me feel better. I was reminded of this topic, and realized that these moments of feeling “elite” can mean alot.
r-at-work… It’s funny how that works. So many people insist that our injuries come from our training, but in my experience, I am just as likely to get injured walking around, or like you, bending over to pick something up. It’s good to hear that you recovered quickly… sounds like it won’t affect your marathon much, if at all.
February 27, 2004 at 1:24 pm #13438
done the ITB thing in 2002, at mile 22 of the MCM… ice pick to the right knee… actually went to a good doc who’s wife is a triathelete so he knew I wasn’t going to quit running… did the RICE thing, some PT and got some good stretches that I do every night and was told to never run on the side of cambered roads (or at least switch sides often)… same with the track, change directions often…
was also told it was the most common & most treatable running injury… mine is all gone as I am very careful where I run… oh, and new shoes as I also pronate worse on my right foot which was the ITB side as well..
probably heard it all before… I did find that water jogging and the elliptical were okay once the pain and swelling was down… boring but do-able… good luck..
February 27, 2004 at 6:54 pm #13439
Switching sides of the road is easier said than done. Last summer I often thought one leg felt more sore than the other. I figured this was from running always on the left side of the road.
I tried to switch over to the right side at various points in the run but in the end went back to running on the left. It was way too ‘spookey’.
Whenever I heard a car aproach from behind I pictured the driver playing with the radio or doing their makeup, heading right for me. As the sound got closer I could’nt stop myself from twisting my head around for a peek.
This ‘peeking’ became a bigger problem then the road ‘camber’ so I went back to running always on the left. I’m so used to it that even when racing on closed roads I find myself naturally on the left side.
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