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Mary!!! my long lost friend!!! Well I've been benched for a while myself this year....SF put me on the bench in September and I've struggled since. Tried to come back once I got the all clear to fast and benched myself again last week. for a runner, that's the kiss of death. As you know I was a steadfast 6 day a week gal....big mileage was my deal. Well I can now tell you that I cross train like a fool. Started as necessity and now I enjoy swimming and biking. If I have to be honest, I was totally tired of being in pain all the time with my running so the SF most likely was the result of not only my over training but also the result of my overcompensating for other annoyances. I know you used to weight train, not sure is you still are...try some biking or some swimming if you can. It might help heal that injury and restore your love for the run. I'm hoping to be back on the road fully recovered by janaury...i've got 3 halfs i'm registered for in the spring.
ps happy thanksgiving!
TRUST THE TRAINING!
Cyndi! You half marathoning fool! You really are a mileage gal, for sure.
SF? (Can't make my brain think what that is.) I actually did a lot of cycling this summer to cross train and it did help. But I just don't love it like running. I am still promising myself that as soon as the weather turns wintry, I am taking off running and doing some different workouts. No really! But like today it was 60 degrees with a clear, blue sky and tang of autumn in the air. Who could not run! And I have good days and bad days that don't even seem to make sense. Yesterday I punished myself through barely 3 miles of pain until I finally threw in the towel (one of those "I'll never run again" days.) Today I easily popped off 4 miles with no pain whatsoever and could have easily ran a couple more miles if I had time. Go figure. ???
Its good to hear from you, I'll go check out your FB page and see what you've been up to. One day I will get up there to visit my family (I have been promising them forever) and we'll go for a run!
SF = Stress Fracture....the runners worst nightmare. UGH!!! Bought me a great bike and joined a pool and swimming right now is my thing (I loved to bike but almost froze my tootsies off so the Stud (aka my bike) has been put into mothballs until spring...boo!!! If you hadn't figured it out, after my 3 halfs in the spring I'm gonna give triathalons a whirl...would be a shame to waste all this cross training...lol. I took myself off FB for a while...message me here!!
TRUST THE TRAINING!
Stress Fracture - OWWW! That is one thing you CAN'T run through even if you want to.
Mary - So sorry to hear your still struggling with your knee injury I recently had to take 4 weeks off running (and cross training) due to a pulled piriformis muscle. It was during the middle of training for a marathon too, I had got up to my 13 mile long run before it happened. (I was averaging about 25 miles/week). When it finally healed, I came back slowly (3 slow runs a week of 1-2 miles).
For the first week back, I got out of breath very easily, but the fitness came back surprisingly quick. My first run back was September 29th (0.7 miles). On October 17th I ran a 5k only 45 seconds off my PR, and on October 30th I set a 3 minute PR in the half-marathon. If anything, my running has gotten stronger after taking time off. All is not lost Good luck, I hope you get this injury put to rest!
Currently training for:
Electric City Gobbler 5k 11/25/20
Kiawah Island Half-Marathon 12/11/10
Shamrock Marathon 3/20/11
No need to mothball your bike, get a trainer (cost around 100-150) you can ride all day long in your house, garage or basement. Same as biking you just don't move.
After my cataract surgery I had to take a month off. I ran a 4 mile race with 2 days training and I hurt but I also had lost a lot of speed. It took almost 2 months to get my speed back, so I know what time off does. I also know about hurting knees. I started running (kinda late in life at 53) so hurting knees was sort of expected. With exercises given to me by my doc I strengthened the knees. They still hurt (as I am old) but with Advil I am comfortable running. This year I have done a lot (11 HM, 1 17K, 2 10K, 1 15K, 2 8K, 4 Sprint Tris & 3 Olympic Tris) and one more HM to go. I am now training for a marathon. To guide me I found this neat book referenced on Runners World. Run Less Run Faster. At first I thought it would be an easy training program which would give me great results. Nope it is more in intense. Now to the point. The authors recognize that running wears down your knees, so less running is good for your knees. Well I wondered how do get faster if you run less. Cross training. They recommend swimming and spinning or biking. Especially swimming. Their approach is not easy cross training but hard cross training. That way you don't lose your endurance. Since I just started the program I can't tell you the final result, but I have been getting better and better PRs with their approach. I do all swimming, biking and spinning. The good thing is my knees don't hurt very much when I run. Thus I suggest and the authors recommend, do cross training until your knees feel better. Hope that helps.
I had to take two weeks off running (or any exercise) this Summer when my son was hospitalized. Although I felt a big sluggish those first couple of runs, I seemed to get right back into it. And honestly in the long run (LOL) I think it helped that I took that time off (not that I had a choice).
Thanks, everyone, for sharing your stories. I have a fear a lot of runners have which is that if I stop - even for a week - I'll stop altogether. It is kind of a variation on the law of physics that an object in motion tends to stay in motion and an object at rest tends to stay at rest.
How has it been going? Any update?
Worried that a week off will put you in danger of stopping altogether? It ain't gonna happen - not after what you said you've done through the years to get your runs in. I have a somewhat similar story. I've run at 4:00AM because that was the only time of day I could do it. I've run when it's -10 deg F. I've run in small circles because the compound where I was staying for a business trip was the only safe place I could go. I've been battling foot issues for 2 *years* and I still think of myself as a runner who is sidelined temporarily. It's not that I haven't been able to run at all - but my previous and now desired mileage of 25 mpw just hasn't been happening. This past summer I was up to 12 mpw - but then the wheels came off after I went on a backpacking trip. I haven't run at all since August.
As you hopefully have now experienced you're not going to lose fitness in a week. Having pain after a week off and starting to use phrases like "....maybe my running days are over." - well - we're not going to LET you out of the running community that easily. Basically you've got some work to do. Work to figure out what is going on with the knee. You said you're underemployed and have little (no?) benefits, however knees are NOT something to mess around with. I would definitely NOT run through the pain - especially if you're experiencing catching. All these resources (forums, Google, etc.) can help a lot in having an amateur (like you and me) figure out what is going on. I'm not talking self-medicine, but rather fairly aggressive amateur research and reading about knee issues, what they are, how they're treated, prognosis, etc. There is a user on the runnersworld.com Injuries forum (mmrocker13) who knows a TON about knees. You might look for some of her posts and/or PM her.
Hang in there. I hope things have improved.
"Kick off your high heel sneakers, it's party time."
-- From the song FM by Steely Dan
Thanks, Jim! I appreciate all the encouragement. I know I'm not the only one who struggles with frustration when the desire to run is thwarted by physical issues. I have better days and worse days. On a "good" day I can run an hour with little or no pain and I think I've turned the corner. On a "bad" day I can barely walk, much less run and I don't think I'll ever run again. It goes back and forth. The weather here has turned colder and its almost winter - my projected stopping point - but now I've pushed it back to after the holidays. I think I'm the only person in the world whose New Year's Resolution will be to STOP running!
I'll check out the knee thing...thanks again.
I know the feeling...I ran a half marathon in May and suffered a tibial stress fracture and then went and ran another in June. That was really silly of me because I couldn't walk for days. I still have a bit of tendonitis in my ankle because of this and it took me a long time to heal but I was still able to run a full marathon in October! I couldn't have been happier with my time because I really didn't train for it and I believe if you are a conditioned runner your body bounces back in shape pretty quickly.
I think that my running shoes caused my tibial sf and I too was also getting knee pain but now that I have the proper shoes the knee pain went away. The pain would always seem to hit me at mile 7.
I also used a special heat wrap on my ankle daily that is suppose to heal soft tissue injuries. Might be something you could try on your knee.
Hope your knee heels quickly and good luck to you!