Saturday, October 15, 2011

Strugglin' Summer, Fantastic Fall

Well followers, it has been a very long time since my last post, and there have been some up and downs in the last two and a half months.  Luckily, and knock on wood, the downs seem to be in the past and the ups seem to just keep coming.

Starting May 20, I was having trouble with the paroneal tendon on my right leg; it is a small tendon that runs on the outside of the leg from the ankle up toward the knee.  This injury lingered for about five weeks.  Once I was able to resume running, I went about two weeks with no problems with the right leg.  THEN...

That damn left achilles.  The first running injury I have ever had was some really bad tendonitis in the left achilles at the end of my senior track season at the University of Minnesota.  The achilles hadn't given me problems in about 14 months, but it decided to haunt me again once I was ready to progress further in my training.  My left calf was much weaker than my right calf, so I was putting more stress on the achilles than need be. With a lot of rehab, I focused on strengthening my calves; as this has happened, the stress on the achilles became less and less, and I was able to return to running pain-free after several weeks.

This summer I physically struggled with my running due to injuries, and therefore, mentally struggled.  Then came the Fall...

I had been training well and continuing to build up.  In late-September came my first workout: 3x 5 minutes with one minute rest between.  I decided I would run this workout on the track so I could keep track of my pace.  #1: Felt good, maybe a little fast. #2: Ok, probably about what I was hoping for. #3: HORRIBLE!  I thought it may be a good idea to see how far I was able to run during each of the five minutes, but after the workout I was mentally out of it.  "Next time, I am not doing it on the track."

Two weeks ago came the next workout, and this time I did 4x 5 minutes -- and this time on the road.  The importance of these workouts is not about how far I go, how fast I run -- it's about the heart rate.  This workout was much better, both mentally and physically.  Come three days later, a different workout just to get the legs turning over quicker.  Again, this workout came with equal success.

This week, another workout on Monday: 5x 5 minutes.  Again, success!  I feel like I am finally coming around, but I've still got a lot of work to do.  I am currently training at about 65 miles per week, and I've got a good training block planned for the rest of the Fall and early Winter.  Come January, I hope to be training at a high level and once again racing.

This post is just a summary of the last two and a half months.  Obviously more has happened, but that would be a really long entry.

Until next time...

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