Guess and check (20.5M)

Each run has become a sort of "guess and check" system. Guess how much my leg can handle and then give it a try. Sometimes I'll be able to sneak in an extra half mile, sometimes I have to cut it short. Hoping to see some improvements from the PT this week. I'm backing off of the cross training as I am no longer mid season or with a possible race coming up, and I hate doing just to do it... no motivation. As long as I'm getting in 30+ minutes of physical activity each day, I'm going to be happy with that and let things be.

Sunday, October 28th
4M progressive through the neighborhood in the afternoon (7:27 AP)
COMMENTS: We ran in the afternoon so both of our stomachs were upset! The plan was 8:30, 8:00, 7:30, 7:00, but we had trouble feeling out the pace. We still progressed and kept things comfortable so mission accomplished regardless. 8:14, 7:30, 7:21, 6:45 for the miles. My hip and leg were sore before started and particularly painful and different points, but when I got to about 3.25 I was back at the point of wondering if it would hold me the next step. Not a big fan of this guessing game lately. 6' of pedestal routine afterwards.

Monday, October 29th
40' bike with 20' of 30",30" in the morning
4M: 1M easy, 2M of diagonals, 1M easy during lunch (7:17 AP)
PT session at night
COMMENTS: Worst hip, knee pain today that I've had in quite a while  :( Really, really painful. I got in the run though, and tomorrow is my day off, so I'm just going to pray and trust that it's ready to go again on Wednesday. I didn't want to do diagonals on the track like planned because I was afraid of all the turning I'd have to do, so I stuck to my same neighborhood loop I've been using and just did a 30", 30" fartlek. I'm convinced that if my leg were not hurting right now, I'd be able to have some great workout because everything feels so good and easy. Miles today were 8:47, 6:36, 6:16, 7:16.

Tuesday, October 30th
Rest day. I originally planned to bike today, but was in so much pain that I felt it was smarter to take off completely.

Wednesday, October 31st
4.5M: 2M easy, 2M @ 6:45 pace, .5M easy during lunch (7:40 AP)
rehab exercises and core + 15' stair master after work
COMMENTS: I am still in pain sitting around and walking, so I was not expecting to get in a run today, but surprisingly my leg really wasn't much worse running than it was sitting/ walking around! Taking advantage of it, I tacked on a 1/2 mile easy after the planned 4 mile workout. I was supposed to run 2 easy and then 2 at 6:45 pace; ended up with paces of 9:13, 8:23, 6:41, 6:37, 7:18 which is really right where he wanted me. Felt great too, physically! I almost didn't pick up the pace after 2 miles because I was just so grateful to be able to run I didn't want to ruin it, but I decided to at least give it a try. Thankfully it still was tolerable and the pace actually felt very comfortable. Very, very appreciative! Checking back in after my evening workout.. pretty strong groin pain today so I cut the cross training short. :/

Thursday, November 1st
20' HIIT bike (30" all out, 90" recovery) + 15' steady elliptical + 20 push ups in the morning
4M progressive through the neighborhood at lunch (7:19 AP)
COMMENTS: This is the absolute worst my knee has been since day 1 of no running. I can barely bend my knee (writing this an hour after my run today) and am in so much pain. :) I knew it would be bad when I stopped and I thought about stopping early, but knowing how painful it would be after running, I decided it was best to get home running instead of walking. Definitely glad I have PT today. :/ At any rate, aside from my leg I felt wonderful on my run again. Clicking off the miles and cutting down the pace like nothing... just so comfortable! Mile splits were 8:12, 7:25, 7:02, 6:39.

Friday, November 2nd
45' bike through the neighborhood + 5' jump rope
COMMENTS: Very concerned about the pain in my leg still, so I put this off until the last minute (not expecting to do anything). Decided to try biking the neighborhood once to see how it felt and ended up not having pain doing some easy biking so I just kept going. jumping (rope) isn't bad either because I don't have to bend my knee, so I jumped 500 jumps with the jump rope before calling it a day.

Saturday, November 3rd
4M: 2M easy, 2M of 30" quick, 30" recovery at noon (7:30 AP)
45' bike in the evening
COMMENTS: Wow. I cannot tell you how shocked I was (and THANKFUL) that I was able to do this entire run. And honestly with much less pain than some of my other runs this week! I accidentally messed up and did two easy before starting the "diagonals" (which I'm doing as a fartlek for now), but I think the only ill effect of that mistake was slowing down my overall time and pace a bit since my second mile was not as fast as it would have been if I ran easy after doing the surge miles. At any rate, mile splits today were 9:11, 8:08, 6:21, 6:15. I finished off the day with a 45 minute bike since that's what I needed to hit 5 and half hours of cardio for the week.

Total weekly mileage: 20.5 miles averaging 7:27 pace. I'LL TAKE IT WITH A SMILE!!! :)


Pennies in my penny bank (18M)

Right now I'm managing an average of twenty minutes on runs before my leg gets too tight and starts to give out. Twenty minutes is not much, but it does keep me in the running motion and it's a daily reminder of why I want to be healthy again. I love the feeling so much that I have a renewed desire to get back at it every time I get a small taste. This will be my first full week of PT and steroid stim treatment, so maybe by the time I blog next week it'll be thirty minutes that I'm averaging. :)

I agreed to do a relay on December 9th with some other ladies in the Dallas area, so I do want to be working towards gaining "running" fitness again; even with the barrier my IT band is putting up right now. Jake wrote me out a cross training/ running/ strength plan to try this week, so I'm going to put my body to the test and see how things go. It will be much more time consuming than what I've been doing, but I suppose when you're not able to log miles on foot, you have to make a few other sacrifices.

Sunday, October 21st
10 mile bike with Jake at the lake + 2.7 mile run at Norbuck Park
30' rehab exercises at night
COMMENTS: I was hoping to get in four this morning, but my leg just wasn't putting up with it. Not sure if it was the surface, the PT work I've been doing, or something else, but I didn't have a choice to push through this one. Called it about 20 minutes in and counting it as a few more pennies in my bank. It'll add up one day.

Monday, October 22nd
PT in the morning
3M hard at lunch (6:55 AP)
45' cross training (HR avg 173) + upper body strength in the evening
COMMENTS: PT was much better this week than last. Not much work physically, but an eye opener to some very poor balancing skills and an awesome knee massage. My three miles were very solid, and probably way too hard. First mile 8:16, then 6:20, then 6:09. For not having warmed up and doing no drills or stretching, it's no wonder I felt like it was a full on race! I did the run through our neighborhood and capped it off with a 1/2 mile recovery jog to get my breath back! I noticed my leg in the first mile and in the recovery, but not much during those two hard miles. Did 10' elliptical (had to stop because it hurt my inner thigh/hip/pelvic bone on the left leg), 10' rowing, 25' biking. HR% was about 70 for the elliptical and bike, then 75-80 for the bike. It was extremely hard work to get it up and keep it up! Thirty seconds of recovery biking would drop it straight back to 130! 

Tuesday, October 23rd
60' bike (HR avg 143) + 5' core in the morning
30' rehab exercises and lower body strength during lunch
PT session after work
COMMENTS: It is seriously SO hard to get your heart rate up on the bike! And once it is up, it's very hard to keep it there; especially for 60 minutes! I don't think there is a such thing as an "easy" bike when going by HR! :) But I'm excited to know I'm actually getting work in! Legs were shaky after strength workout during lunch. Also, the therapist had me stop halfway through our exercises because of where and how my knee was catching/popping. Said it was characteristic of meniscus problems and wanted me to have my doctor get the MRI film instead of just the results. I'm guessing it's nothing big though.

Wednesday, October 24th
3M run (HR avg 164) with Jake in the morning + 3 x 15" strides
COMMENTS: Felt like trash my run this morning and when I looked down about five minutes in my HR was at 188! In fact, my Garmin says it picked up a max HR of 210! I think I figured out part of the problem during the day though since I felt worse and worse as time went on. Sore throat, headache, earache, and what felt like a fever. Bleh. Skipped the 45' cross training and strength workout at night.

Thursday, October 25th
PT session, 3.5M treadmill run (HR avg 163), 30' bike (HR avg 145)
COMMENTS: Very long day today. Had to be downtown by 7AM for some testing, felt nauseous all day afterwards because of what I had to drink so I couldn't workout at lunch. Went to the gym after PT and got in what I could up until 8:30 and then called it quits to go fix dinner and get some rest (so no, I did not get in the full 60' cross training that was scheduled). Ran the first mile at 8:15 pace, second at 7:30 pace, last 1.5 at 6:58 pace.. felt okay aside from my stomach. Leg was starting to get bad during the last half mile so I couldn't have slipped in one more half. Considering PT as my lower body strength work for today.

Friday, October 26th
1M run + 3 x 15" strides during lunch
4M run (HR avg 168) after work in 30:20
COMMENTS: Went out in the cold during lunch to try and get in my run but my leg was having none of it. Locked up for good .75M in, so I stretched a bit and luckily was able to run back. Stretched a good while afterwards and in between each 15" stride. Got in my run on the treadmill at night. I was able to finish without it locking up, but was in major major pain for the run. Really starting to wonder if I trust this doctor's "you can run through this" statement...

Saturday, October 27th
45' very casual bike alongside Jake while he ran


A glimmer of hope (18M)

I began last week not expecting to run at all, but looking forward to being active again thanks to Jake's strength circuits. God, however, had a different plan and I am so grateful. I got in four runs that were about a mile long or more, and one of them had almost a full mile at 6:40 pace (I'm not a slow, completely-out-of-shape slob yet!!)! Each run was painful, and there were a couple days where I tried, but just couldn't eek out the run without being dangerous with my bio-mechanics and stride, but it was "doable" for those four runs!

I see the orthopedic doctor tomorrow afternoon and will hopefully get some more answers then, so I'm going to wait until then before I write out my plans for this week.

Sunday, October 14th
20' run with 3 pick-ups at the end + lower body strength circuit

Monday, October 15th
20' run with last half up-tempo + upper body strength circuit
COMMENTS: Least discomfort and pain I have had yet while running, up until the end! Anytime I was running downhill, my knee and hip would lock up and I would lose form, but level ground and uphill running was fine! I think I pulled something in my back doing the upper body workout though, haha. :)

Tuesday, October 16th
20' run + 10' bike; 60' rehab exercises & foam rolling in the evening
COMMENTS: I met with my Orthopedic doctor today and found out it's only ITBS. Definitely a relief, but the hard part is figuring out how to heal it. ITBS takes an average of 6 to 9 months to heal, so if we aren't smart I could be out for a while. I'm going to do rehab exercises/foam rolling every other day and he found some AlterG treadmills in Dallas that I can try to get use on as well. I'm also going to continue running whatever my body allows. Jake's good coaching friends says that ITBS is something you may as well run on until it doesn't let you because the movement increases blood flow and promotes healing. I'm not sure I agree 100%, but I do think it will be beneficial to continue light, short runs as much as possible. Mostly I'm just thankful to have an answer!

Wednesday, October 17th
30' run
COMMENTS: Got it in! Every step I take, I take it wondering if I'll be able to take one more. I try to stay as close to where I started as possible so I don't have too far of a walk back, but so far I've been able to tough it out for the full runs. I'm just hoping this is helping and not delaying the healing process. I'm going to keep doing rehab every other day, but not sure where the balance is with my running.

Thursday, October 18th
Full body circuit

Friday, October 19th
20' run (5' easy, 5' medium, 5' of 30" fast, 30" easy, 5' hard) + rehab
COMMENTS: I am getting tired just aimlessly running for whatever amount of time my body lets me, so I snuck out during my lunch break for a quick "structured" run. I spent 5 minutes running easy, then picked up pretty good for 5 more. After that, I went straight into 5 minutes of 30" fast, 30" recovery, and then finished it up with 5 minutes hard. Let's just say I was BEAT by the time I finished!! :) As embarrassingly short as 20 minutes is, I'm very thankful for this run today!

Saturday, October 20th
4M run + rehab
COMMENTS: I went to out to Kiest park for this one; I've been doing all runs since I started back in the neighborhood, so I thought I would try getting to a softer surface where I didn't have to turn every 100m. It ended up being a bitter sweet choice. I got in four miles (longest run yet) and actually ran them pretty quick to finish in 29:35, but it was also my most painful run yet. I was in pain from the start, but not sure how to get back to the car without finishing the loops! Regardless, I got in 30 minutes of running and can rest it up to be ready for tomorrow!


Nothing new, really. (6M)

Still no diagnosis (no doctor appointment yet) and still unable to run.

Jake is writing me some circuit workouts to keep me busy and active and they're working GREAT. I cannot even put it into words how sore I am today!! :)

At any rate, if I hear anything from a doctor this week or if I manage to get back to running some, I'll post an update. If not, I'll see you all next week. :)

I've done some light running this week. I am still in steady pain (both running and not running), but my leg does not give out at any point, which is honestly the reason I had to stop running to begin with. I see an orthopedic doctor on Monday, so until then I'm going to stick to 10 to 20 minute shakeouts for as long as I can. I'm trying not to get too excited or eager because it's so painful still (definitely don't think I could make it past 3 miles if I had to), but anything is better than nothing!! :)

Tuesday - 8' shuffle
Thursday - 15' easy run
Friday - 15' with last 6 minutes at 6:40 pace
Saturday - 3' shuffle (hurt too bad to continue)


Me and my fragile body... (1.5M)

To catch everyone up to speed, I began having minor knee pain about two weeks ago following a pretty hilly 10k race I ran. I recall several runs where I complained about my knee and considered dropping the workout or cutting my run short; but, confident that it was not a bone injury, I pressed on. I'm not familiar with knee injuries or knee pain, so I really had nothing to compare it to. All I knew is it hurt, but it did not affect my stride... there was no limping necessary! :) I completed the full week of training (with some pretty awesome workouts) and then knocked out a great 9M steady run the next Saturday without knee pain; only some minor hip flexor pain which had actually started the same time as my knee pain.

Sunday, Monday, and Tuesday, however, got progressively worse. On Tuesday, I joined the DBU girls for some sub-pace work on the grass track. I planned to stop if at any point the pain forced me to alter my stride, but rep after rep, I finished feeling completely normal. The recovery jogs, though, were absolutely brutal! I felt significant pain during those. After my last rep, I was told to get in 7' easy for a cool down... I eeked out 5' but was limping by the end of the first lap (for some reason easy running made everything more magnified). Ever since then, I've been completely unable to run. I can do jumping jacks, partial squats, and knee lifts, just fine, but ask me to start running or walk downhill or down stairs and it gives out entirely. My left knee and hip are the two pain points keeping from running right now, but the time off has shown me how little my right ankle has healed since spraining it. The worst pain is when I first wake in the morning, but it really doesn't get much better during the day. Just lucked out that it doesn't stop me from running properly.

Needless to say, I'm a mess right now. I need my left hip, left knee, and right ankle all doctored up, but there's always one pain over-powering the rest so each doctor only treats one of them. (AKA, I can't get them all taken care of in one appointment and I don't need to miss work or pay for three separate MRI's and doctor appointments, so I'm really up a creek!)

This week I will hopefully get some good news from my knee MRI, but that's about all I can expect. Most likely there won't be any running, lower body strength, or cross training for the week, so I won't be writing the days out unless something changes.

Best wishes to those of you training right now! It's the BEST weather you'll get all year! :)

**Got in a light shuffle on Thursday morning and again with Jake in Chicago... very painful, but nice to run. Only 5 to 10 minutes each.