Tuesday, September 22, 2009

ACK! Four weeks and counting. . .

This post comes to you in a time of frustration.
1) I am sick enough to not want to do anything at all, but not sick enough to lay around all day.
2) I am dealing with some sort of foot injury.
And that is really, really crummy.

This past week, I had a couple nice runs and ran 18 miles on Saturday morning. That was really cool. It started quite early--6 a.m. The stars were still out. I saw Orion, the dippers and other stars I haven't seen in quite a while. I watched the sun rise over Reed's Lake. It is phenomenal to watch God paint the sky and start a new day with his creative palette. I saw the darkness turn suddenly to light when the sun crossed the horizon. That was fantastic.

The run went pretty smoothly. I took a little aspirin before my run and I felt no pain from my knee (which I now know not to do). That was fabulous.

What wasn't fabulous? Well, I didn't have enough food with me and when you run for three hours, you are in need of real food. The granola bar that I had with me was not nearly enough. I didn't have the chance to buy a super protein/calorie bar, so I had to make do with one of the kid's cheap ones. Don't be fooled, there is a definite difference in quality and ability to fuel an athlete.

I was doing pretty good until I was on the backside of Reed's lake (again) I had covered about15 miles, had less than 3 to go. And the mental game got to me--I was hungry, I needed a bathroom in a desperate way, and I didn't know what to do. I called Eric and seriously considered having him come and pick me up. I wanted to quit. For real. But I didn't, I kept going, I found a quiet woody place in a park, and found the gumption to make it home. But then found out, I was just a hair shy of 18 miles--I mis-remembered my run route.

In the end I am pretty proud of my time for my 18 miles--just over 3:30 (3:34 to be exact) and think that with the lessons that I am learning, I could make a pretty good first showing at the Grand Rapids Marathon (less than 1 month away!)

But that's if my foot heals.

Starting Sunday afternoon, I noticed it hurt to walk. By the end of the day I had a noticeable and significant limp on my right side. I can't figure out what is causing the pain--it's probably an overuse injury that requires rest to heal. I hope that it is not a stress fracture. And this is my conundrum: I don't want to quit too easily chalking it up to a bum foot, but I also don't want to injure myself in a more serious way. I am giving my foot a few-day break and am shooting for a short run on Thursday. If that goes well, I am scheduled for a 20 mile run (my longest before the marathon) with the Grand Rapids Running Club on Saturday morning.

But right now I am frustrated. I have come so far. I don't want to quit--but I am also not a big fan of persistent pain that I don't know where it comes from or how to get rid of it.

I am hoping that this is one of those bumps that turns into a turning point/motivational lesson/God's provision that propels me through to the end. We shall see. . .


WAKonings said...

Glad you are taking a few days off. I read once that you can't finish a race that you can't start due to an injury you didn't take care of.

Have you tried those glucose packets? They taste terrible! But...they do often give that extra boost that is needed. Just remember to eat them SLOWLY...and I don't reccommend chocolate! (Even though I'm a complete chocoholic!)

You can do this! You have come so far! Your times are awesome! Give yourself some rest and make sure to ice and stretch. I know when I did that I felt a lot better after my runs. YOU GO GIRL!!!!

Meika said...

Eighteen miles is insanely awesome. Do you have a doc you could run your foot by? (no pun intended)

Coffee tonight?

Casey, Annie, Brooklyn and Paige said...

18 miles...AMAZING! I agree with Meika, go to the doctor and have them tell you what's wrong with your foot--you can take the appropriate action that way. Take care of yourself!!!!!!