I missed Fitness Friday yesterday after promising to use it to to update you on how I was doing with Courtney’s yoga challenge, but the last week as a whole has not gone exactly according to plan. Luckily I have been able to stick with virtually all of the challenges in which I’m participating this month, though I have only done yoga once so far, but some of my plans have been slightly complicated.
As you may know from my previous posts, I am running the BAA Half Marathon tomorrow for the second year in a row, this time as a Medley participant (meaning I ran in the BAA 5K and 10K this year as well). I have been looking forward to this since January and set a goal for myself to blow last year’s time out of the water.
This half marathon was supposed to be my second ever, but I had the opportunity to run in the Allstate half marathon three weeks ago thanks to Elizabeth. I couldn’t have asked for a better run, despite some pain. I ran in just over 2 hours, which was almost a half hour faster than last year’s BAA. I set a new goal for myself to PR again at the BAA by shaving off a few more minutes and decided to give myself a couple of rest days.
The next day I was feeling pretty good, not really at all sore. The pain I had felt during the race was primarily in my feet so I wasn’t worried. By the second day after the half, I felt a twinge in my left knee. I figured it wasn’t anything to worry about because I got a similar pain last year after my half. I avoided running or any high impact workouts and focused on taking it easy. Toward the end of the week I decided it was time to get in a run. I only lasted a mile. The pain in my leg wasn’t so intense that I couldn’t have kept going, but it was enough to tell me that something was wrong.
Again I worked on icing it and taking it easy. That Sunday night I was reading in bed with my feet flat and knees in the air. When I decided to put the book away and get some sleep, I put my knees down and my left knee popped–loudly. As I flexed and straightened my knee again, it popped again, and I could feel a kind of grinding. Frantic, I decided I needed to go to the doctor the next day.
I ended up seeing a nurse practitioner who wasn’t entirely sure what to make of the situation. When I told her about the popping and grinding, her diagnosis was tendinitis and she said she would set me up with a referral for physical therapy at the clinic, but that they would call me directly to make my first appointment. As I left the clinic and walked home I did some some online research to figure out what I should do in the meantime. I found a lot of results for patellar tendon straps, so I bought one and had it shipped to arrive two days later.
Once the strap came it made a world of difference. As soon as I put it on the grinding stopped. I could finally go down stairs and downhill again without any pain. I also started foam rolling more regularly (at least once a day) to keep my muscles loose. Overall I was feeling great.
Then on Wednesday night I was walking home from the grocery store (several bags in tow) and as I started up the hill, a wave of heat hit my knee from the inside and then went all the way down my leg to my ankle. I slowed my walking considerably and hobbled to the house, afraid that if I walked quickly I would be in a ton of pain. Once I got home I took my tendon strap off and grabbed a bag of ice. Then I started researching. Almost everything I could find said “pinched nerve” and I realized I had been wearing my tendon strap way too much. I had started to rely on it so heavily that I basically never took it off except to sleep.
I was a mess that night, totally beating myself up over potentially injuring myself in a brand new way. I took some ibuprofen, hopped on the foam roller, and did my best to work out any stiffness I was feeling. Still, all I could think about was how my parents were coming into town to see me run the race and I might not be able to do it at all. I felt like a failure. Just as I was feeling my worst, Caitlin tweeted about participating in my Leaf Negativity Behind challenge. I was reminded then just how blessed I am to have amazing people in my life, both other bloggers and my friends and family. I realized that even if I can’t PR at the half marathon tomorrow, I can get out there and do my best. I also realized that my parents, who have never really just visited and have never seen me run a race, were going to be supportive of me no matter how the race turns out, even if I have to walk for part of it.
So I focused and meditated on that, just how truly blessed I am to have amazing people in my life. That was hard. I had gotten so wrapped up my own pride that I wasn’t focusing on my health. It was so important to me to PR that it became my focus rather than making sure I don’t permanently injure myself. Still, once I focused on how proud of myself I am for all of the races I have done and for committing to at least try in this one, I was able to regain some clarity and remember what’s important in life. Then when I was feeling really miserable again yesterday, I did the same thing. It’s amazing what a world of difference it can make to focus on the positive things in your life or how amazing you are, despite any perceived weaknesses.
Regardless of how things turn out tomorrow, I’ll know that I got out there and did my best. Ultimately taking care of myself is a step toward my goal of running a full marathon sometime within the next year or so. That’s what I need to focus on–not the failures, but how I am working toward my goals.
I know we are almost a week into October, but I would like to invite you to participate in my Leaf Negativity Behind challenge this month anyway. It doesn’t matter if you’ve missed a few days because you’ll still benefit from focusing on the positive. Read about all the details here and grab this button if you’d like to show it off on your blog.
Make October the first month of many where you focus on your accomplishments and the things that make you happy rather than the negative self-talk that keeps holding you down.
Thank you to everyone who has been so supportive of me in this challenge and for taking part as well. That’s my meditation for today, that I have touched people and I’ve helped some of you focus on more positive things. We all have so much to be thankful for.
- None Found