Week 9: Half-marathon training update

I’ve never appreciated these beauties more than after my runs!

First off I want to apologize for the tardiness of this post! I was on a mini vacation this weekend and work has been crazy busy since I’ve been back so I didn’t get to post about last week’s training. If you read any of my posts last week you know I tweaked my knee during a race on July 28 so last week was kind of a dud training-wise.

I knew I had hurt my knee the minute I started feeling the pain. While I’m still not completely sure what I hurt, it felt like an IT band syndrome flare up. So, in an effort to avoid hurting myself even more I decided to take a break from training for a few days and focus on strengthening and cross training.

Most of my week consisted of cross-training, yoga and strengthening exercises. However, after resting for a few days I decided to try an easy run with my knee on Tuesday. Bad, BAD idea. I wasn’t two minutes into the run when I felt the sharp pain in the outer side of my right knee. I stopped after only a mile, feeling defeated, upset and  kind of concerned. I abandoned the run and turned to some strengthening exercises instead.

I took another few days off, making sure to ice my knee every day and stretch a lot. I focused on doing yoga for runners from Lululemon and other strengthening exercises. On Friday, I decided to try running again because I thought my knee was feeling a little better. I was on vacation in Maine and decided to take a 3-mile run along the beach, staying on the sidewalk. My knee was still sore but I was able to make it through the run, stopping halfway to stretch. I knew this was a good sign and that my knee was starting to heal.

After my run I did some yoga outside which was really good because I was able to stretch out my IT band. Saturday, after watching the women’s Olympic marathon, I was motivated to get out on the road again. I decided to do a longer, easy run that circled a 5.5-mile loop on the road, a gravel trail and a natural trail. This was really great on my knee because incorporating the trails lessoned the impact on my knee.

I felt really great on this run, especially towards the end when I really got my stride back and felt like I was just coasting. I wrote about it in another post but I think this injury has helped me to appreciate the gift of running. Having to take a few days off killed me but once I got back on the road I was able to cherish every stride. I also am lucky to be able to go running in beautiful places and I was able to enjoy my surroundings and really take it all in. I think sometimes us runners take our gift for granted. But having to be out of running commission for a little bit I was able to really appreciate every step I took. And I’m sooo happy to be back on the road! Happy running!

Back on track: 3-mile run after knee injury

Post-run yoga outside after my 3-miles

Last weekend I tweaked my knee during a race and it was extremely painful. I’m still not 100 percent sure what I did but it feels like an IT band irritation. In an effort to not hurt it even more I decided to forgo my 12-mile run last weekend and do some real resting.

It was absolutely killing me not running. I saw other runners out on the road and I just wanted to get up and go. But I knew if I started up I could risk hurting myself even more so I really rested.

Today was my first day back on the road and I decided to do a 3-mile run along the beach (on the road not the sand). I woke up, had some coffee and a few glasses of water. I went outside and it was really humid and already 85 degrees at 8:30 a.m. but I went ahead and did my stretches and headed out.

Starting out my knee felt fine and I was just so happy to be back running. About 1-mile into the run I started to feel the pain in my knee, but it wasn’t so strong that I felt like I needed to stop. So I kept going. Around mile 2 my knee was really starting to bother me so I decided to stop and do a few stretches. After stretching I started my final mile and my knee felt the best it has it days. I don’t know if it was the stretching that helped or my adrenalin kicked or what but I felt great!

Overall, I thought the run went really well! I was so happy to get back on the road even though I was only out for five days but it felt great. After the run I did some outdoor yoga and other stretches to make sure my knee was going to be OK. Moral of the story? When you’re hurt, rest. Don’t overdo it because you could get even more injured. I’m hoping to get out running again tomorrow and try to do a longer run along the coast.

I hope everyone else is having good runs this week. Happy running!