Road NYC Marathon 2018 Log
Overcoming Injury, Emotional Stress & Anxiety
It’s a little under 8 weeks of training before I go cover the 5 burrows of New York as fast as my body can move on foot on the day. I’m preparing my mind, and my body, and the last year has not come without a ton of hurdles to overcome.
I didn’t think mindset would be one of them but it has. I didn’t think injury would be one of them but it has.
My goal this month is to be able to run again
I know, I know..I’m kinda needing to be able to run to run a marathon.
The purpose of me sharing this is not for sympathy,
I’m really feeling strong, and confident. It’s for record. It’s for sharing how I’m overcoming while I’m overcoming. A look behind the curtain of an amateur athlete with a ginormous goal. I know I will cross the finish line. I can see it, visualize it. I can feel the emotion I will feel. I know God has my back.
Why I am doing this?- Because I always wanted to do another marathon after I completed Dublin, and I write more about that in this post.
First I will explain the hurdles -
Inflammation in my body made it more difficult to absorb the nutrients in my food, so I set out to repair that in the first 6 months of training, while mileage was relatively low, and it worked.I thought I had gotten through all the tough stuff, because my new system felt like an unstoppable machine. And it was until….
Emotional stress began-
July 9th we lost our family dog. I had thought I had prepared myself , because we knew it was coming, but it blew my heart apart and the pain of loss, emotional stress, causes stress on the body that can lead to further stress during workouts.
I gave myself permission to feel, and many runs were not without tears. It’s kind of impossible to run, cry, and breathe at the same time, and even now, as I type this, tears run down my face. More is in this post.
Then with August came the onset of wildfires and our community became filled with high levels of smoke.
My husband and I had to take our training indoors to the gym treadmills.
We were so grateful to have that option and truly made the best of it, but it didn’t come without some really tough challenges.
I hadn’t run on a treadmill in about 15 years so I had to learn and get comfortable.
Out of courtesy for other gym goers we would go in the middle of the day when no one else was there, because our runs were long. Completely outside of my "perfect training window", but it turned out to be okay there. Kind of nice breakup of the day.
I can’t see over the dashboard of the treadmill and at times the lights would annoy me and I found it hard to relax…but I worked through it.
Unfortunately though, I began to get anxiety about my workouts, especially the 3 hour run I planned to do on the treadmill .This was actually an early warning sign of overtraining.
To beat my internal fear I broke the run up into sections and did I ever feel like a bada$$ when I completed that one. After that day the wildfire smoke cleared.
I got to finally run outside, and I ran so fast I blew my doors off. It felt like I was a hamster let out of her wheel. I felt a little hip flexor stress, but nothing I couldn’t handle.
The next day I ran again longer, and harder…big mistake… it should have been an easy run.
Hello psoas muscle injury…what the what???? At this time I am writing, that is what I’ve self diagnosed myself with the help of a very experienced running friend Laurie, and Dr. Google.
Like most people, I really wanted to see if I could self diagnose, and repair before seeking professional help.
The first step before seeing someone was to go through my training log. (Love my Garmin for that) Usually injury comes from repetitive stress…not just 1 incident.
The cumulative effect of Injury
Just going to backtrack a bit here..when I went to the gym to treadmill train I did less warming up, and less stretching after. And in the 6 weeks or so prior I was spending less time on functional fitness, foam rolling, and Yoga to complement my strength & range of motion.
You think I would have learned right?? From last time? When I began running again last winter and my calves were screaming.
I also have never run on a treadmill..we are naturally a little imbalanced, and long bouts of something new is foreign.
I have to add all the other stresses in my life to the cup, because all of that raises cortisol levels which increases injury risk. (That’s a whole other post)
As I’m typing this it’s been about a week since I’ve ran, but my recovery is going well. I have a very special person to thank for helping me get my mindset back and pointing me in the right direction. Laurie Hunt from The More-In-Me MOVEment is a fellow runner and triathlete. When something is wrong, I usually clam up, google it, find a solution and move on. This time I shared my pain and struggle with her .
When I told her my pain, she told me the muscle to google, and bingo, bang on with my symptoms.
Then she encouraged me to get out my bike and it will at least help me feel better emotionally — ..That was a tad scary. But she was right.
I felt fear dragging my bike out from under the deck amidst the cobwebs and spiders..I pumped up the tires, and checked the brakes.
I felt fear going out in traffic...what if I get runover?...what if I get a flat?...Really??
I was afraid I would feel pain..but what I felt was the imbalance correcting…which was another thing Laurie mentioned.
So now as I stare down the path of a fast approaching date that will not be moving for me, I know my training plan will not be exactly as written but I am determined to heal, and my goal is to finish, not to win it, and I know I can, even if that means I don’t complete all the workouts in the plan.
But still feel a little lost about what to do..how to get back to a plan..how to ease back in to running without undoing the repair.
When I contacted my good friend and running coach and owner of Dream Travel . He encouraged me more, like I knew he would, but also encouraged me to go see a physiotherapist.
I’m 45 years old, and I’ve never been to physiology, Chiro, only had 2 massages in my life…so I took his advice and made an appointment.
Another brand new experience is on the horizon.
Hmmm…isn’t that a lot like life? We don’t give up, we find ways to shift, to make it through the groan zone.
We allow people in that understand what we are going through, and when we are ready to receive the information AND implement, that’s when another hill is climbed.
My goal this month is to build my training back up and be more serious about dynamic & core strength training- In about 2 weeks I’m easing back into the running..shorter distances, more frequently and I quite likely will arrive at the start line “undertrained”-
I can do this...to be continued...
Do you have a story? How you’ve overcome or are overcoming ? Please Share below..
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