I know I am a runner

Hello there! How was the Monday after a big holiday weekend? I know a lot of people have this whole week off so maybe you were still out having fun. I could take this whole week off but since I’ll be going to Florida I figured I’d go in Tuesday and Wednesday to prepare some stuff for when I’m gone. I don’t usually work at the office on Monday so I stayed home today finishing up the laundry and doing my weekly cleaning. I also went for a loooooong (45 laps) swim, and played with my new PS3. I am so excited to use the Netflix feature on it!

So, as I’m sure you can tell from my posts this last 3 months of training for the Disney Half marathon have been less than perfect. I have suffered from two reoccurring injuries that have been quite troublesome to me. In looking through old posts I see my back injury first flared up while training for my Olympic Distance Triathlon. But I didn’t have any pain in my leg until this past fall. Coincidently my leg pained happened after another  back flare up and really hasn’t been the same since.

My boss at the Y knew about my recent injuries and thought there might be a correlation between the too and not a good one. She said that some times when back pain is followed by leg pain, especially behind the knee (not behind the knee cap actually on the back side of my leg) that can indicate a disc problem. If a disc is bulging it will initially cause back pain but later cause leg pain because it presses on a nerve. She said doctors usually treat it with physical therapy which encourages stretching and core work but if it gets really bad it can lead to surgery. She recommended cutting back on my running mileage because the constant pounding only pushed on the disc more, hence more leg pain. Needless to say this kind of scared me. She recommended seeing a doctor. But I haven’t…yet.

I did cut back on my running and definitely haven’t trained like I did for the Maple Leaf Half Marathon. Interestingly I did not suffer from any injuries while training for the Maple Leaf Half. But I also wasn’t teaching as many fitness classes. Honestly, I have sunk a lot of money into the Disney Half Marathon and I am pretty sure when I go to the doctor they will tell me to stop running, at least for awhile. My leg pain is pretty bearable and like I’ve said before, I’m not doing the Disney Half to win any medals I’m just doing it for fun and for the experience. If I have to walk it I will.

I plan on going to the doctor after our trip and if need be I’ll will stop running at least until I heal from what ever ailment I am suffering from. I’ve been thinking a lot about what the outcome might be when I go to the doctor. What if they told me I could never run again? (I don’t really think this would happen). I feel very fortunate that I started my journey of fitness training for triathlons. Because of this I love doing a variety of activities especially swimming. I also love different types of fitness classes like Zumba and Group Strength. So, if someone told me I could never run again there are lots of things that I love to do that could keep me healthy and happy. But training for the Maple Leaf and Disney Half Marathons have made me realized something… I LOVE running and I am a true runner! I use to identify myself as a triathlete but now I can confidently say, I am a runner! I’ve come to enjoy the challenge of speed work and hill runs. And I’ve really begun to enjoy my longer runs as a time to push my body and to see what amazing things it could do. Even though I don’t LOVE running in this Wisconsin winter weather I actually find it fun and invigorating, something I had never done before but now that I’ve done it can see myself doing it even if I wasn’t training for something. During the last six months I could honestly see myself doing a full marathon some day.

But first I will see what is really wrong and do what I can to fix it. Who knows it might not be a disc problem at all. And even if it is I don’t think I will NEVER be able to run again. During my last long run I listened to a very inspirational podcast from Marathon Training Academy about Angela Coulombe who suffers from Lyme’s Disease. At one point in her life she could barely get out of bed, let alone run but last fall she completed the New York City Marathon. I’m sure that what ever my issue is I will be able to work through it and continue my running.

So, these are just some thoughts I’ve had about running, my injuries and more.  Thanks for listening and I’ll be sure to keep you updated on my injuries and how I’m feeling.

Tomorrow Brian’s family starts arriving to celebrate Christmas the holiday will continue!

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