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Day 27 of 112-Day 26 Follow-up-#paindelay

Good day everyone!

As today is Monday it is predictably a rest or cross train day. And, unlike past Mondays, I actually plan on NOT resting today!  More about that later….

First of all, I’m into “signs” i.e., signs that I’m supposed to do something or not do something or signs that something is going to happen or not happen.  And I think that yesterday handed me a big ‘ole sign!  I think the fact that Tiger Woods took first place in the Arnold Palmer Invitational yesterday, his first PGA Tour win since 2009, is a sign that great things are on the horizon for ME!  As Tiger was gearing up to land first place yesterday, I was wrapping up a 20-mile training run, which was the best 20-mile training run I’ve ever had!  Also, Tiger’s last PGA win was in 2009 and that was the same year I ran my last marathon, whose time I am hoping to crush this year!  I mean, how can this be a coincidence?  Tiger and I are on a roll!  I know he’s quite the social polarizing figure, and as a person he doesn’t particularly thrill me, but I have always loved Tiger the Athlete! Congrats, Tiger!

Tiger Woods after winning the Arnold Palmer Invitational, March 25, 2012.

As I mentioned in yesterday’s blog, my 20-mile training run went really well.  It was a day of “hittin’ my gumbies” and posting some great times! I felt good after the run and headed home for some food and R&R.  I had a nice little snooze, got some blogging done while my fabulous husband started to tackle our yard, had a good accupuncture appointment.  It was, not unlike Friday, a pretty much all around great day.

And then at some point in the evening, when I attempted to perform the relatively simple task of trying to walk either up or down my stairs, or perhaps an even simpler task such as standing up…my post-run euphoria had slowly, but surely, been replaced by post-run pain and I was moving very ssssssslllllllloooooolllllllllllllllyyyyyy.

Once I was actually able to stand up, i.e., use my quads to help lift my body off the couch despite the strain and tightness at the knees, the effort it took to take a step, particularly the pressure exerted on my quads to go up or down a step, was unbelievable.  To the touch, and I’m not kidding you, to just touch my legs with my hands hurt. It was as if my entire legs were bruised.  Now, once I got up and moved around a little, I was fine; but as soon as I sat back down for any length of time and attempted to get back up-the cycle repeated itself.

At around this same time, my wind and sun burns really start to kick in.  Due to the plunging temperatures outside, I had to cover up with a blanket, but my face was beet red-it was on fire.  After what seemed like forever to climb the stairs, I crawled into bed. I would have thrown myself into bed, but I didn’t have enough energy.  I crawled in, curled up, and turned out the lights.

About two hours later, I got up to go to the bathroom, which is what happens when you are drinking water all day long in order to rehydrate after a 20-mile run.  And as I took my first few steps toward the bathroom I could NOT believe how sore my ankles were.  I felt like they could snap at a moment’s notice.  They seemed so fragile.  It was as if my legs were a ton of bricks and my feet and ankles a pair of very fragile china tea cups.  I wish I was an illustrator and could draw this for you, but I can’t, so you’ll just have to dig down deep into your physics past and pull out some formulas about mass and weight and force and the physical inability of two china tea cups being able to support a ton of bricks.

This morning when I woke up, I had the same problem with the ankles, and I knew that the only shoes I would be wearing to work would be my running shoes.  Fortunately, I work in a casual clothing environment, but wearing running shoes and jeans on a Monday even I felt weird about.  As I walked around the house my ankles got better, but my quads are still sore and my hamstrings are still tight. And the two psuedo-accupuncture needles (they do the work of the needles but they are much smaller tacks) are still in my neck as I try to get my muscles to calm down.

I am sooooooooo glad these are on the front of my neck. I think it's hilarious that no one at work has said anything. I feel a bit like Frankenstein.

Ouch! This is me just lifting my legs at my desk. This makes my quads and hamstrings yell and tell me never to run 20-miles again.

So what’s a girl to do?  Well, this girl is going to use today’s “rest or cross train day” to STRETCH!  I have a 60-minute stretching video at home and I am going to do it tonight.  And not just because I should, but because I want to.  It won’t be pretty and there will be lots of moans and groans, but if I am going to be able to sprint around a track tomorrow a.m., it’s what I’ve got to do!

Here’s the thing, you can do all the right things before, during, and after a long run and you are still going to have these problems.  It is your body’s way of telling you that it’s a little pissed off and your it’s not really meant to do this.  Twenty miles is not just a long way to run, it’s a LOT of pounding, in fact, 20 miles is about 40,000 steps-that’s 40,000 times each of your legs gets lifted up and comes down hard on the surface (Again, refer back to physics formulas about mass, weight, force, etc); and whether you’re running on gravely, dirt-impacted roads or concrete or black top-that’s a lot of pounding of one’s musculoskeltal system, and it’s going to take a day or so to recover!

So make sure you hydrate before, during, and after a run; my hair stylist on Friday told me that compression socks and or pants may help out as well as their main purpose is to improve circulation and thus reduce pain and swelling; and we’ll wait to hear from Christy P about the benefits of a 15-minute ice bath.  But remember, no matter what you do, if you run 20 miles…..there’s going to be pain.  As they say, “No pain. NO gain.”  So just think of it as a badge of honor and wear it with pride for a few hours.  The pain will eventually subside and it will be replaced, once again, by the memories of your great running accomplishments!

Runner with compression socks.

Runners at last year's NYC ING Marathon, making sure they take in plenty of water-even though the race is in November and temps are often in the 40s.

Runner's at last year's Honolulu Marathon. Hey Christy P, this looks much easier than.....

 Carry on, friends.  Carry on.

 

 

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