A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

A blog about my life, fitness and fun! (...and maybe a few cat pictures...)

Thursday, May 14, 2015

Dear Megan, Don't get greedy!

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On Wednesday morning, I went for my first walk/run since Saturday. My plan was to be very cautious and stick to the intervals I had decided on- 1/4 mile walk + 1/2 mile run to total about 5 miles. I didn't want to get caught up in the fact that I was running and throw my plan out the window, thus putting myself in more pain. The goal was for my TFL to not feel any worse after my walk/run than it did before my walk/run. (That morning, it felt slightly tight when I would bend to the side and stick my hip out. On a scale of 1-10, I'd rate it a 3.)

In a way, running felt great. Sweat. Endorphins. The wind in my face. But my legs did not feel fresh at all. In fact, they would ache and feel twinge-y (is that a word?) when I would take my walk breaks. Nothing major, but I sure did feel rusty. My glutes and hips felt fine, so that was a great sign.

At about 6:44, I only had a mile to go. That's when my brain starting spinning. Hips and glutes felt good... and I have some time... maybe I could do another interval or two...

NO, NO, NO, NO, NO!

Don't worry, I didn't do it! I stopped when I had originally planned and had plenty of time to stretch and foam roll before I had to hop in the shower.

I thought of loyal reader, Susan, who always reminds me not to "get greedy" when it comes to running. Listening to your body and easing back into running after taking time off should not be taken lightly. That was my problem last Friday. I had taken 12 days off running and then on my first workout back, I basically did a progression run ending with my last couple miles in the low 7's. And then what do ya know? I was in pain after. Yeah, stupid!

I am proud to say that on Wednesday, I stuck to the plan and finished before I felt any hip or glute pain. I did not get greedy and just push out a couple more minutes or a couple more miles. I was conservative. Susan, thank you for always reminding me to be careful!

Another thing that motivated me to play it safe was the fact that our vacation is right around the corner! I want to be able to run in Colorado, New Mexico, Arizona, Nevada, and California! I don't need to run 10 miles or anything, but if I can't at least go on a short run through the foothills in Colorado, I will be very sad! Hopefully if I play it safe now, I can run carefree in a couple weeks!

Do you ever have to reel yourself in when you know you shouldn't be pushing due to injury or a reintroduction of running after some time off?

32 comments:

  1. I am so happy you had a great walk/run on Wednesday. Way to go, Megan.

    How I know the challenge of not getting greedy -- not just when coming back from injury but (for me) all the time. I don't know why our minds just always want to do more! I realize I am in the minority since I don't race or train intensely, but I still fall into the trap of "wow, look how fast that run was...maybe next time I will push a bit more" or "I just finished my 3 miles, how about if I make it 4 or 5 or 6". I know that for many that mentality totally works and is what makes them better! What makes me better is doing "just enough" because at 43 w/ my history of injury and also w/ having some back arthritis, "just enough" is what is going to keep me running for years to come. I am glad we can remind each other to see the big picture because when we are in that moment, that run, it feels like everything!

    Keep up the great work, Megan! You are such an awesome example of health.

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    1. Your comments and reminders REALLY help me to see the big pictures and make the right decision that will *hopefully* keep me running for a long time! Thanks so much, Susan!

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    2. Thank you, Megan. Your posts always remind me how important strength training is and I really enjoy following someone who has a very healthy grasp on exercise. As you know, kind of rare w/ all the HLBs out there.

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    3. Haha yup. I have had to quit reading a lot of them.

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  2. Like you, I find reeling myself in to be challenging. You were smart though. It will be really neat to run in all those different states on vacation!

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    1. Yes! Knowing I need to run strong soon is good motivation.

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  3. I don't know if twinge-y is a real word (probably not) but it is how I describe all of my little aches / tightness from my hips! I feel like everyone knows what we mean when we say twinge-y! :)

    Good job on not getting greedy - you will be very happy when you're running during vacation with (hopefully) no twinges!

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  4. Yup! This happened to me this past weekend during the Pixie Dust challenge and I ended up paying for it!

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  5. It's so hard to end a run early when you're feeling good! But its way better to finish a short run with zero pain than to run extra and aggravate something!

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    1. Yes! Thank you for saying that! I need to constantly remind myself these days.

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  6. I am finally learning (or at least trying to teach myself) that it is OKAY to add a little walking in with my runs. I know my plantar fasciitis will thank me for it and in reality, if I don't get up at the butt crack of dawn (which I can never seem to do), the heat already in Florida is stifling for running. Even around 9 or so it is really to hot and humid. That being said, this may be the way I "run" for the rest of my life. I am trying to increasing the running distance but I like taking that 1/4 mile walk, helps me get my breath back.

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    1. Joanne, I finally adopted the Galloway r/w/r method a few years ago. It was hard because my ego had a hard time w/ it after being a runner for almost 25 years. But now I embrace it and someday I would love to not even count "this is how much I ran and this is how much I walked". I am getting there in accepting that miles are miles....

      Good luck!

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    2. Thanks! I have heard of the Galloway method but have not investigated it further... Not sure if there is a certain ratio he follows or not. And you are right, miles are miles!

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    3. You can find a lot of info online and I also purchased one of his books -- but basically you just follow what makes sense for you. Play around a bit w/ different times or distances to run then walk and you will soon find your sweet spot.

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    4. I purchased a Gym Boss, which is a mini timer, and use 4 x 1 - 4 minutes running, 1 minute walk, the timer beeps and vibrates, it's awesome, got me through my last hot half marathon. :)

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    5. I am sure there is an app too that I can use but I kind of like going with how I feel... of course there are those times when you push when maybe you should just walk!

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  7. I always have to reel myself in and tell myself to slooow down. My injuries last fall after my marathon were really an eye opener for me.

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  8. Glad you played it smart! I've learned to stop when I'm ahead from my running streaks.

    Hooray for feeling so strong!!

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    1. What a great thing to learn from your streaks!

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  9. Crap, I've been pretty greedy since I started running again, maybe tripping up the steps and aching for two days was a good thing, it scared me into chilling a bit.
    You know I have enjoyed my walks w/strides these past two mornings, it's a fun workout. Trying to figure out how to ease back into things is always a challenge. I am not good at this, so I can offer nothing useful. Other than I do turn on the timer and Galloway when I am feeling challenged and the breaks make a huge difference.
    You do need to be able to run on vacation, that's too much fun to miss out on!

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    1. I am not good at easing either. The only reason I am doing it is because I keep giving my self REALITY CHECKS. I want to run forever. Also, as a personal trainer, I feel like I would not be taken seriously if I did things that were bad for my body, you know?

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  10. Nice job on stopping when planned ;) You are much smarter than many of the other bloggers out there. I think it is really hard for many of us that enjoy exercise (or one exercise in particular...running maybe?) to stop when we should if we have extra time, feel great, or just need the extra endorphin rush. I am really good about not pushing the intensity on my runs often anymore. I run nice and easy. I never walk during my runs just because I get into a nice easy flow and find stopping to walk and then running again not enjoyable! As you know though, I do lots of walking, and I think it is hard to overdo gentle walking. It is one of the easiest exercises on the body. Again, nice job on stopping when you did. You will have a great vacation with some memorable runs!

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    1. Thanks Eugenia! I do not particularly like walking/running... in a way it is a little harder because like you said you can't get into a "flow". It it is much easier to zone out and get in a rhythm when you are doing one or the other.

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  11. These are so true! I am the worst at starting and stopping running and I always start up again too fast and end up getting little injuries and then hating my life because I want to run and can't. Slow is the one of the best tips! For me personally I am encountering a lot less of the common runner's injuries even though doing marathons. I strengthen some regions through powerlift and crossfit training. For more insight visit http://never-never-never-give-up.com

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    1. Strength training is definitely one of the best things I have ever done to help my running! Glad you have found it helps you too.

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  12. This is me right now. I technically probably should not be running at all, but I can't help it. With my job, I REALLY need to run after work. Otherwise, I'd become a crazy person. Luckily, the person I run the most with is lazy as shit when it comes to running. He's fast as hell, but when he's not training for anything, he stays in the 8:00-8:30 pace, which feels too easy for me, but it really helps keep me honest. Yesterday, I felt like I was walking and looked down and it was an 8:55 pace. I was like, "What are you doing?!?" But it really has helped me learn how different paces feel for me.

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    1. Rachel, I am so worried you are going to overdo it and end up being injured to the point that you are unable to run at all for several weeks! I know this thought had to have crossed your mind. Have you seen a sports doctor or anything?

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  13. You are so disciplined Meg and I admire how you listen to your body. I'm really trying hard at that this year and am improving on it a bit. I admit it's still a struggle not to get caught up into "high mileage" from 'last year' or the year before, etc. But I am learning so much more about maintaining a healthy running body.

    Yesterday I went to get a second opinion on my glute area problem and it turns out my Glute med is weak which is irritating the other little muscles beneath it. I was given homework and the outlook looks very postive. ;) This is the first time ever I've had glute/hip issues so I'm not going to mess around with that!

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    1. It's at the point where I don't have a choice but to be disciplined. And like I said to someone else above, I wouldn't be taken seriously a a personal trainer if I didn't make good choices for MYSELF.

      I am glad you are learning more to trust your body. Because listen. Do you know who the only person is who cares about what mileage you had last year? YOU! Your yearly/monthly/weekly mileage does not define you as a runner or a person. It is UNATTAINABLE to keep doing more and more and more and more.... there has to be ebbs and flows so that our bodies come back STRONGER.

      I am glad you got a second opinion and that you know what to do with your glute problem! You never really described your pain and what irritates it... what's it like? I am in the same boat that I have never had glute/hip issues before and just don't want it to become chronic.

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