Coming to terms with a running injury

The running Gods haven’t been too kind to me lately. Although I had a great race last weekend, got a new 5K PR and ran my first half marathon a few weeks ago, I can’t seem to shake these aches and pains from running. If you’ve been reading my blog somewhat consistently over the past eight months you know I’ve been plagued with my fair share of running-related injuries- runner’s knee back in the spring, IT Band Syndrome this summer and now self-diagnosed peroneal tendonitis.

I can be extremely thankful that none of these bumps and bruises have seriously sidelined me for any extended amount of time (knock on wood!) they have been extremely frustrating. This latest mishap has me more frustrated than usual. While it doesn’t hurt as bad as the IT band flare-up did, it’s more of a nagging pain. I can run with it, it even seems to go away after the first few miles, but I just want to run injury-free. Is that so much to ask for?

After seeking advice from some friends and going on a Google frenzy in search for stretches and exercises to ease peroneal tendonitis, I came to the conclusion that it might not be a bad idea to take a few days off. I haven’t done that in the past eight months so maybe that will help? Hopefully. I know I sound like I’m complaining but it pains me to “rest” especially when I see my friends and the close-knit virtual running community logging their weekly miles. I want to go running, why can’t I log 30 miles, 40, even 50 miles a week?

Oh, that’s right, I only started running eight months ago. I think my ambition and sheer love of the sport is the real cause for these injuries that keep sprouting up. I love running so much and am always itching to get out on the road or to hit a trail that sometimes I forget to really listen to what my body is trying to tell me- I need rest.

This reminds me of a conversation I had with my dad a few months ago. My dad is a 16-time marathon veteran (he ran Boston eight times and boasts a 3:09 PR) and although he hasn’t been a consistent runner for awhile now, he can relate to my recent frustrations. He said to me, “Hannah, running is like a roller coaster. One day you can be high up and feel amazing and the next you come crashing down.” He explained to me that a lot of the time things happen for no apparent reason and you just have to take it easy to prevent further injury.

Old photo of my dad running Boston.

If this means resting a few days for me, so be it. I forget that there are so many people out there who can’t run. I get so down on myself when I get an injury and find myself getting jealous of those runners who say they’ve never been injured, but the truth is, every runner is different. I also need to be more patient with my running. I get overly excited by new PRs and longer distances that I forget I really haven’t been running that long. Moral of the story? I need to be more patient, listen to my body and be thankful for all of the progress I have made in the last eight months. The rest will fall into place over time!

Have you had any running-related injuries? What’s your advice on staying positive through injury? Share you stories in the comment section below!