BROKEN AND BRUISED
This is the post where I have to actually admit that I should have set up a chiropractor appointment after that very first run back home...even though it was finals week and I was super stressed/overwhelmed. Because, we all know that in those scenarios, I just end up running a crazy amount of mileage and beating my body up way more than is even necessary. So, I finally had to break down and go to the chiropractor yesterday.
PLOT TWIST. There was a lot of shit wrong. In all the times I've gone to the chiropractor for back or hip issues, I have Never had to have so much work done just to get my body back to normal. Another surprise with this visit, was being told that I could still keep running. As long as the pain stays away (Let's all take a moment to cross our fingers and toes for that), I can continue with business as usual.
Following that appointment, I then proceeded to make the not so great decision of skipping my foam rolling/stretching that is supposed to get done every night. In my defense, I didn't want to "mess up" the work that my chiropractor had done. Truthfully, I don't know how that would even be possible, but it sounded like a pretty good excuse at the time.
I really, really wanted to push the limit today distance wise. I mean, I'm healed, fixed, hallelujah let's run a million miles. I even grabbed a gel beforehand, because I didn't want to have any excuses for cutting my run short (aside from hip/pelvic pain obviously). I could tell a pretty dramatic difference in how my legs felt within the first 3 miles or so. I had way less pelvic pain and virtually no hip pain. Plus, my legs just felt fresher and more springy.
And then at about 4.2 miles in the side stitches started. They were actually on my side this time and not my entire lower abdomen for a change. I also felt my pace slowing down at this time as well, which had me freaking out and about bawling my eyes out. This was supposed to be a perfect run. Fast times. Zero pain. And all the fun. No matter what I told myself, I just could not stop stressing over the fact that this run was NOT going according to plan.
When it was finally time to take my gel, I just so happened to be running up the four lane where everyone and their dog could see me struggling both to run and open the damn packet. After several failed attempts, I just said screw it and went savage (aka opening it with my mouth). I was unsure how the strawberry banana flavored goop was going to taste, but it was actually very tasty. For awhile at least, I was able to pretend that this magical goop was going to save this run. Make me run the times that I should be running.
In the end, things didn't really get that much better the farther I ran. The last 2ish miles that I usually enjoy so much because I get to run around the twisty trail were not as enjoyable as normal. I was spending a lot of time glancing at my watching and willing the run to just be done.
Now that I've had some time to reflect, I realize how freaking stupid I was being mid run when things got tough. I never once stopped to think about the fact that my body is physically capable of running 9 miles. Or of all the people out there who can't run, but would really like to. Nor did I consider that this is just my third even attempt at the distance, so obviously I still have plenty to learn. I ad no idea right after completing this run that my previous 9 miler (from 5 days ago on pretty much the same exact route sans gel) was a whopping 1 minute slower.
I have already accumulated 16 miles for this week. So, even though it pains me to write this, I am going to commit to ONLY running 6 miles for the next 1-2 days. Pacing is whatever, but it will most likely end up being faster than these long ass runs have been lately. The plan is to wait til Friday to try for 10 miles again. I was successful in my first attempt back in the end of April, but that was a 9:24 average pace. Which sort of seems impossible right now.
In case you didn't know...running in the rain/thunder/lightening is a great time, 10/10, would definitely recommend. It made Monday's 7 miler go by so much faster because I was just trying to outrun the storm and it felt WAY cooler out too. BUT THE PUDDLES!! I swear every time I *accidently* ended up stepping in one I yelled "AHHHHHHHHHH"