Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Thoughts on 1/2 Marathon - Five weeks out...

As you know, I've got runner's knee. You also know I decided to train for and run the Glass City 1/2 Marathon about fifteen weeks ago.

My training was going amazing, it really was. I got up to running 9 straight miles. Only.....that was three and a half weeks ago. After that long run, the runner's knee struck me, and it struck hard. I took a week off of running, and did the elliptical machine, as a lower-impact alternative to running. That weekend, I went out for another run, planning on doing another 9, and only got in 6.8 miles before I had to hobble the rest of the way home in serious pain.

After that, I made an appointment with an orthopedic doctor to find out what was going on, and to make sure I wasn't really seriously injured. I did no physical exercise in that week and a half between my almost-7-mile run and my doctor's appointment. After it was confirmed that I just had a case of Runner's Knee, and that I was not doing my knee any damage by training, I got a fancy new brace, and planned on setting out last weekend for a five-miler. I got in three before the pain started, struggled and pushed for another half mile, then - once again - hobbled my way home.

Today, March 14th, we're sitting at about five and a half weeks before the race. In approximately 35 days, I'm supposed to go out and run 13.1 miles. Let's be honest. It isn't going to happen! I have full confidence that, had I not gotten injured, I would be running 13 right now. But this injury has slowed me down drastically, and as much as it currently hurts to run, I have accepted the fact that I will not be running 13.1 miles at the end of April 2012.

Notice that last sentence is in italic font. Why the heck did she do that???

Two things to take from that sentence.

1) I said I will not be running the race. I didn't say I won't be participating. The course is open for four hours, and I have figured that I can move as slow as 18:00 per mile and still finish under 4 hours. I will run what I can, and when it hurts, I'll walk. I gave myself a pep talk today, and I reminded myself that even my slowest, most pathetic pace is still beating the pace of everyone sitting on their couches. :o)

2) I said I wouldn't be running at the end of April 2012. I'm not quitting running. I think it's excellent exercise, and it's a great way to clear the mind and feel amazing when you're done, both physically and mentally. Will I train for another 1/2 marathon? Maybe someday!

You see, I don't feel like I need to cross the finish line after 13.1 miles in order to feel that I've accomplished something in life. I've got a great husband, beautiful children, a cozy home we call ours, a job, a great family - the list goes on. I've accomplished and achieved a great deal in my 27 years. Running is extra. If I get to run a 1/2 someday, then FANTASTIC. If not, that's ok.
My main goal right now is rehabilitation of my knee, and maintaining fitness and a healthy body weight and image. I want to be healthy for myself, my husband, and my kids. If that is achieved by means other than running 40-50 miles a month, then that's ok.

I'm still going to run, once I can get this pain under control. But I'm going to mix it up with lots of cross training, and again - just focus on being healthy.

And there ya have it, folks.

Have a great Wednesday!

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