Last Sunday my training schedule called for a 90-minute run. The weather was actually above freezing and there were no abominable snowman on the trail. My nose hairs did not form nasal popsicles when I walked outside.
So, of course, this is the week I injure my left foot.
Some days I might be happy to use an injury as an excuse to avoid a long run. Instead, I’d been looking forward to using a long run as an excuse to have a Coco Loco, a chocolate truffle surrounded by coconut cake and glazed with caramel. No 90-minute run for me. No Coco Loco either 🙁
It’s all been rather tragic. Last Wednesday it was 50 degrees out and I came home 90 minutes before sunset, leaving plenty of time to run on the trail without three layers of insulation. Only I couldn’t, because I’ve developed a sharp pain on the underside of my foot when I walk, not always, just sometimes when I distribute my weight in certain ways. I suspect it’s an overuse injury, a strained ligament or tendon or something. The best way to attack an injury is to catch it early, ice it and rest it, which is what I’ve been doing. This weekend I tried not to leave my apartment, which wasn’t too hard since that’s how I spent most of my college years. Ha, ha, ha…how I wish I was kidding.
It seems to be helping because the pain has receded, though it doesn’t yet feel healed. It’s happened in a fairly good spot in my training schedule since next week calls for a cutback in running. (30 minute runs instead of 45!) However, it effing sucks. It’s beyond frustrating when my body cannot keep up with my mind. I’ve been using the elliptical machine at the gym instead of the treadmill, but it’s such a letdown. I don’t want to ellipticize, I want to run! I also find it difficult to push myself hard on the elliptical. If I stop on the treadmill, in the best case scenario it sands the zit off my face. If I stop on the elliptical, the machine turns off. Oh my God, how horrible.
However, I am reminded of Deena Kastor, a featured marathon runner in the film Spirit of the Marathon which I saw recently. During the film, she injured her leg or foot or some appendage, and could only run in a pool for several months. When she talked about recovering from the injury, you could tell she was upset that she couldn’t run for real, but she kept a positive attitude and worked out in the gym as best she could. (And damn, she lifted weights so rapidly it SCARED me.)
So, I will ellipitcize and I will pray that my foot heals. And no matter what, I’m completing the damn half-marathon in six and a half weeks. If the bus trailing behind at an eighteen minute per mile pace tries to pick me up off the course, I will beat them off with my crutches if need be. Hopefully my foot will just heal itself, I’ll try not to increase my mileage too rapidly, and all will end well – including me at the finish line.