Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Taking a break from running...

After I finished the Chicago Marathon on 10/10/10 I felt pretty good.  The last 6 miles were really tough for me due to the heat.  I sit here today, looking back, wondering if I hit the infamous wall too (likely).  Temps were in the mid 80s for my last 6 miles and it took everything I had to push through the last 6 miles and finish with a time of 3:56 (a PR by two minutes).  As I was running those last 6 miles and feeling like complete sh*t, I was still thinking about running the New York City Marathon on 11/7/10.  When I finished the NYC Marathon last year, I vowed to myself that I would make it annual tradition. 

So, I told myself I would take off as much time as needed after the Chicago Marathon to rest my body to run the NYC marathon.  I felt OK on the Monday after Chicago, felt a little more sore on Tuesday (I am always the most sore two days after an intense workout), and on Wednesday my right knee was killing me.  I knew that it was my IT band, as it hurt a lot to roll it out, a tell-tale sign that my IT band was tight.  At this point, I didn't think that I would be able to run for weeks, let alone the NYC Marathon.  I heavily iced my knee on Wednesday and Thursday, stretched it out with resistance rubber bands, and rolled it out.  By Friday, the pain was completely gone.  I felt good enough to run easy on Saturday and Sunday (4 and 5 miles respectively) and I was on track to run NYC.  I took Monday off and ran 5 miles on Tuesday.  As I was running, while my knees felt fine, I felt some twinges in my right leg, the same place that an May 2010 MRI revealed that I had a "thickening of the bone".  The doctors said that I either (1) may have had a stress fracture in the past or (2) may be about to get one.  Thankfully, it didn't bother me at all during my Chicago Marathon training, as I followed a much easier training schedule with a lot of cross training.  I saw my physical therapist (AL, she just did the Kona Ironman in 10:30) and she said that I may be having "stress reaction". 

When I had the pain during my Tuesday run, I decided then and there that I was not going to run the New York City marathon.  My ultimate goal is Ironman Canada on 8/28/11, and I decided that I would likely hurt myself more by training for and then running NYC.  I thought it would be a tough decision but it actually wasn't, it was a huge relief.  I could relax, not get up early every morning, and take a break.  A week later, I'm thrilled with my decision (although sad I won't run NYC, now I can go out and cheer for all of my friends).  I haven't run for 8 days in a row and I may take 2-3 weeks off before running again.  I'll listen to my body.

Having said all of this, by yesterday, I felt bloated and missed exercising.   I decided to buy a bike trainer for the winter to get some baseline winter Ironman training and yesterday purchased a Cycleops fluid 2 trainer.  I love it!  See the pictures below.  The trainer is awesome.  I put the real rear wheel of my bike on the trainer and put the front wheel on a stabilizing plastic tray.  I already had a Garmin bike cadence accessory hooked up to my bike, so my Garmin 405 bike gets all of my stats while I ride on the trainer - my speed, distance, cadence, heart rate, time, lap time, etc.  It is totally awesome!  Plus, I get to set the trainer up in my living room directly in front of my 42" plasma screen and watch sports while riding.  I have a long cord for headphones and a fan to keep me cool (or as cool as one can be riding in a NYC apartment that is 80+ degrees).

I'll start running eventually, but for now I'm enjoying my trainer.  For my first ride yesterday, I made the rear wheel too tight and found it extremely hard.  I loosened up the back wheel a bit and it felt a little easier.  I got a great workout in.  Any and all advice is appreciated from my friends that use a bike trainer too!

Here are some pictures......

Check out this view....totally sweet!!! (if you look closely you can see my 2 year old daughter Kaiya in the background)

took this shot while riding the bike last night...

1 comment:

  1. Hey Jim

    Sounds like a smart decision... get healthy....
    be proud of your tough, warm Chicago Marathon.

    Looking forward to hearing your cheers on 11/7.