So, where were we?
Let me summarize my life the past few months (since I’ve been alarmingly absent from this venue for awhile)…
Chicago Marathon training. YAY!
Ankle injury. No training at all. BOO.
Vegas Marathon training. YAY!
Chicago Marathon with friend as training run for Vegas. YAY!
Mystery foot injury for entire week before Chicago Marathon that was so painful that I broke down and went to the doctor (mostly to ensure it wasn’t a stress fracture). BOO.
Ran the full Chicago Marathon. YAY!
Endured my most painful marathon EVER. BOO.
Conversely, experienced my most enjoyable marathon EVER because I got to run the entire thing with an awesome friend of mine (sans a few miles where I frantically ran to catch up after an unanticipated bathroom stop). YAY!
Which just about brings you up to date with all my goings on. Nope – you didn’t miss much.
Because of the injuries and the “I’m training!” and then the “I can’t train!” and then the “I’m back again!” and so on, I decided to end my season on the high note of the Chicago Marathon. I had done (kinda) what I set out to do at the beginning of this year, and finally acquiesced to the signals my body was screaming at me and shut it down.
I mean, what fun is training if you’re always worried about how much things are going to hurt when you hit the pavement? I’ll tell ya – no fun whatsoever.
And since the joy was gone, I decided I needed a break. A long break.
So – I’m on a self-imposed running boycott. It’s been almost 4 weeks now since I’ve run at all, and I almost don’t even miss it. The act itself had gotten stressful because I never knew what to expect (and conversely, always had such high expectations that I was trying to meet). Though tinged with regret and sadness, it felt good to let it all go and give myself permission to not run. And to not worry about not running.
It took a bit, but I’ve developed a new plan (yes, another New Plan… I’ve got an endless supply of ’em…). For now? My focus will be in two areas: biking and strength training.
I’ve taken up a Winter Cycling plan created by one of the talented coaches that frequent beginnertriathlete.com (which is where I call home and hang my virtual hat) that will turn me into a monster on the bike by early next year (that’s a promise, he says!).
And the strength training? The program my trainer has put me on just might kill me, but if it does, I’ll look damn good in the casket. I had started to see results from my previous efforts, and with this kind of focus and planning, I’m going to be a rock star by early next year. And that’s a promise, too.
Running will be slowly added back into the mix, starting in the next few weeks. Easy runs. Short runs. Runs without any expectations of pace (my biggest obstacle to ever being able to “ease” back into things). I have plenty of time between now and next race season – no need to rush.
And between now and race season is the holiday season! For which, I’m hoping that armed with a solid bike/strength training program, I’ll navigate with a minimum of poundcakes added to the hips and without thighs that look more like well-endowed turkey legs than the legs of an athlete. And here’s hoping that Santa will be nice to me and send me muscle tone and motivation in a pretty, bow-tied package for being such a good girl all year.
It could happen. 🙂
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