Sunday, September 30, 2012

My first 12 mile day

I was nervous about today for several reasons. Would my left periformis act up? Would my right IT band and knee hobble me? Would Heather be bored with my slow pace? Would we have to walk?

It was a cold morning there at the park. I had a short sleeve running shirt and Heather wore long sleeves. I had goosebumps. She didn't. I think she is more experienced at this than I am. ;)

We ran the route and found all the bathrooms open. Always a good thing to know when you are out there. There was a group of 5 other women running and I assumed they were from one of the many training groups out here. They explained they weren't a group. Just a few girls who run Hood To Coast together out for a run. We saw them a few more times and at one point (at 7.4 miles) they were pulling out in cars as we came running by. The driver of the one car asked how far we were running today. Heather told her "12" (I felt so proud) and she said they had done 10 miles as a group, but two of them had done a little over two miles before that.

The weather was BEAUTIFUL out. Clear deep blue skies. Cool breeze. We ran along the Columbia River a few times. Lovely.

Heather was right. Running with someone else really DOES help time fly! I remember at 3 miles being happily surprised we had gone that far. It wasn't always easy talking, but she assured me I talked the entire time coherrently. I could have sworn I was just grunting at the end.

Heather is also a saint. She runs fast. She runs very fast. She had me doing fartleks a few times but she always sweetly came back to my turtles pace. The results of my running with her?

My BEST running pace of ANY road distance over 7.50 miles. 

I have never ran a pace on an 8, 9, 10 or 11 mile road run 
as fast as today's 12 mile pace.

Note the sweat on my shirt on this shot taken by Heather at the end of  our 12 miles. 
We worked hard, my body held up and we never walked. YAY!!

THANK YOU HEATHER!!! I am so excited and ready for the race. Too bad it isn't next weekend and that we have to go through the Taper period for 13 days first.

Is it superstitious that I am NOT running in today's shoes or running pants again until the race? Nah. Just ensuring they are in the same wear they are in today. I won't be using my water back pack until the race either, because frankly, I won't be running the distance to warrant it. I am dreading the taper period and bet it messes with my head. Maybe I should warn hubby I am about to become a basket case stressing that my body is going to forget how to go long.

Saturday, September 29, 2012

12 Miles Tomorrow?

My training plan says I am to run 12 miles tomorrow. Today, doing three on a small 69 foot elevation gain I pulled my hamstring or periformis again. It has been throbbing on and off all day.

I would rather hear my Half Marathon was tomorrow, than do 12.

I hope I don't hold Heather back too much, and I hope I remember to stay slow and easy as that is a LOT of mileage. I have never ran more than 11 miles.

Here are photos from today's run at the Portland Color Run.

Tuesday, September 18, 2012

Ran the poisons out

I had my colonoscopy yesterday, and went for a 3 mile run this morning in the 89% humidity.

Oddly, when I began sweating, I became uncharacteristically itchy. Very, VERY itchy. My back, my chest, my stomach, my legs and even my face. I was frustrated and scratching as I was running. Weird.  Then I figured out what was happening when I found that the sweat on my upper lip tasted FOUL.

Surely, all that work and sweating was helping me eliminate toxins from the last few days.

Goodbye nasty prep meds and anesthesia!

When I got home, I looked like I had a rash everywhere. I showered really good and the rash disappeared.

The nurse called me at lunch to see how I was doing. I told her that I had gone for a run this morning and I believe that it flushed out some lingering meds from my system.  She was incredulous. "You ran?!" "yeah".  She said that wasn't something she normally hears on her 24 hour check-up calls. She asked how I felt. I said, my stomach was still queasy (almost fluish) and I couldn't shake a bad taste in my mouth but I felt okay otherwise.

It wasn't a fast 3 miles. My pace was 11:32. But, I am glad I did it. I recommend a good sweaty run to anyone the day after this procedure.

Monday, September 17, 2012

My Running Diet and the Colonoscopy

I turned 50 earlier this year and like many others do when that happens, I had a colonoscopy test. Mine was this morning. I knew the 'drink' they give you was atrocious. But no one warned me - The diet was AWFUL! 

This was my dietary schedule the last few days:

Friday upon waking:

  • Cut out all fiber rich foods (there went my Dave's Killer bread!). 
  • Cut out all fruits with edible skins and all fresh veggies (are you KIDDING me!?!). 
  • Cut out all nuts and seeds. 
  • Cut out all red and purple foods. No tomatoes. No hot sauce. No salsa. 
I had to go pay money for white bread, cheap pasta and canned veggies. Eating them was even harder than paying for them. At least I could add grilled chicken to my yucky pasta and eat a banana for desert.

Saturday: I ran 8 miles on the food I ate the day before. Then I ate the same diet throughout the entire day to 'feed' my muscles. Luckily there was skinless chicken, and a Gatorade Recovery drink. But I was really missing my fresh fruit and veggies. It is a habit of mine to eat two servings of blueberries every day I do a long run. Not this weekend. At one point earlier in the day, I almost ate a fresh cherry tomato off the plant I have by my front door but it was a skinned fruit, it had seeds and it was red but I caught myself in time. I was miserable.

Sunday: LIQUID DIET. Remembering, my muscles were still recovering from yesterdays 8 miles I was pretty frustrated. I drank my clear chicken broth and my 8 ounces of yellow or green gatorade once an hour. I had sugar free lime jello and white grape juice. My recovering muscles were not amused. I had muscle cramps and headaches by bedtime.

MEDS:  While I won't explicitly describe the liquid hell I had to drink Saturday night, Sunday night and at 5:20am this morning (and the nasty effects it created) I will tell you that I had no sleep Saturday or Sunday nights.  Also, I had the shudders and had to fight throwing it up while drinking it. I had bad chills for hours after each dosage. I literally cranked my electric blanket up to "4" while wearing sweat clothes under the covers.

Procedure was this morning: While the anesthesia girl was prepping me for my IV she saw my resting heart rate of 48 and asked if I was a runner. That made my day! I went to la-la land with a smile on my face.

They found and removed FIVE polyps. They said two had to go to Biopsy. That disappoints me not because of what 'could' be, but because that means I now have to have this procedure once every 3 years now, instead of once every 10.

Once home, it felt so good to grab my Dave's Killer Bread, grill up a Jenny O turkey patty, add fresh red onion, a fresh heirloom tomato from my garden and fresh green lettuce. Best sandwich EVER!!!!!  

I asked the nurse about recovery from the procedure and if she thought Hammer Endurolyte pills would be helpful. She said it was a wonderful idea because yes, a LOT of fluids are lost in the two days prior to the test. I was going to take them any ways and surely, once I did, my leg cramps stopped.

Doctor said no driving or equipment for 24 hours after. I am taking tomorrow off since I was told not to drive until 11:30 am and I deserve a break (AND SLEEP!!!) after the last four days.

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Will I Be Ready?

The Half Marathon is 27 days and 20 hours away. And yes, I am counting.

On August 22nd, I was fully optimistic that I was going to run the Half Marathon from start to finish. There wasn't a doubt in my mind. I had a beautiful 11 mile run the day before and was feeling good. Surely I could add 2 more miles on race day feeling THAT strong. Right?

Then came August 23rd. I ran five miles. One mile included some cadence work to work on my form. I ran 4 long hill repeats up a .36 mile long hill (with a light jog back down each time). I then ran another mile cool down. While running the last hill I felt some tightness that was almost a pain on the back of my left leg. Later that day though, I felt pain in the center of my left butt cheek instead. The cheek pain didn't go away.

I went to the Sports Doc and without examining me (I kid you not!) he said it sounded like a hamstring. Rest and ice for a week. NO HILLS!! As a note, that Sports Doc QUIT the practice two days later. Hmmmm.

The next time I ran my right knee pain inexplicably came back at mile 4, and did so with a vengeance.  I had to walk most of the way home. It was the first time I couldn't finish a run.

I began seeing my physical therapist at Proactive Therapy WEEKLY.  He did some poking and prodding and testing. He is fairly certain that my left cheek pain is Piriformis caused. He then explained that to me and gave me some stretches that do help relieve the burn. I found that it fit my symptoms very well: I can run without excessive pain to that area (though I do feel it on hills!) but I definitely feel it when bent at the hips to sit or touch my toes after the run.

Then, I got new shoes. After 12 miles in short runs in them, I tried them out yesterday for my first long run (in weeks) with an 8 miler. My right knee started acting up a little at 6.48 miles but it was NOT gait altering. After the run I was walking it out and noticed my inner left ankle hurt a bit. I checked my shoe and saw it was quite loosely tied. Not sure how I did that. When I got home I iced the ankle a lot. Today, I am still icing it. That was definitely a 'duh!' moment on me. I am a pronator with very weak ankles. How on earth I ran 8 miles with loosely tied shoes is a mystery to me.

Sometimes I can be so STUPID.

So -

  • I have 27 days left to train. There is a 10 mile and a 12 mile 'long run' between now and then.
  • I am fighting piriformis syndrome on my left buttock (daily).
  • I am fighting iliotibial band and knee issues on the right side. 
  • I have an over-strained left ankle that is slightly swollen on the inside of the foot and feeling bruised (ice, ice baby!)

My 50 year old body that didn't start running until last August is telling me that this might be my last Half Marathon and I am looking FORWARD to dropping my long runs from 10's to 6's again.  My goals for 2013 are to do Sprint distance duathlons. I love riding my bike. I love running those distances. There is a 5K/15 mile/5K race in April that I intend to be at. 

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Injuries and Worn Out Shoes

Well, starting about three weeks ago I began developing a whole lot of aches and pains and injuries when running. Aches and pains that alter gait. That keep you awake at night. That sent me to the sports doctor for the first time since February.

Hamstrings, possible pirformis pain, outer legs/hips, sides of calves (all relatively new and all at once) and shockingly, the worst knee pain I have had since February.

It was suggested my Saucony Progrid 5's might be worn out. 

About a month ago I had broke down the insert/cushion inside in my right shoe so much that I HAD to add an insert under the insert because it dropped my foot so much that my ankle bone was banging against the shoe's collar. 

That should have been the first clue the shoes were not holding up well for me any more.

Most sites recommend new shoes for runners that use them, every 300 to 500 miles

I didn't catch the part about heavier runners needing them more often. Nor did I catch that those that run on asphalt or dirt trails (in comparison to treadmills and school tracks) need them sooner as well. Nor did I catch that heavy pronators break their shoes down even faster yet!

I wore my shoes in today to the local running/shoe store and in my analysis the guy I was being helped by said just looking at me standing there in them he could see there was NO support left as my pronation was very evident in them. 

Then he had me take them off and he saw that not only was a lot of the knobbies were worn smooth to the depth of the crevices that had once been between them, and that you couldn't read lines there in newer ones, but there was actual white midsole shoeing visible peeking through beneath the shock layer. He said the right shoe was unwearable and he flexed it while pressing on the rubber sole portion to show me it had nothing left.

So, he said that the shoes I loved for the first 250 miles were not supportive enough for me. My pronation is too hard on them. He then came out with a pair of Asics Foundation Gel 10's. A pair I already had in my car as an 'emergency' pair of shoes. I told him I had worn them for my first nine months of my running (averaging just 8 to 9 miles a week) but they hurt my feet when i increased miles. I had thought they were shrinking (they weren't). They were too tight across the toe box and I got black toenails in them. I was told to take the inserts out altogether then...but it didn't really fix the issues.

He looked in the computer and found my prior size in the Asics was a 9.5 so he had me try on a 10 wide. They felt great so I said, "Okay".

I ran 3 miles tonight. When I got back, the side of my arch felt like it was bruised. I hadn't had that pain in a long time. I had completely forgotten about it. Then I remembered. THAT happened the last time I had this same model! 

See this blog page here:

I want another pair of Saucony Progrid 5's. I don't care if I will have to buy a new pair every 225 miles if that is what will be needed to keep from injuries.


I am going back tomorrow.

Weight: 161.4

ASICS GEL FOUNDATION 10's = Going back tomorrow

Saucony Progrid 5 = I WANT!!!