Monday, September 12, 2011

Running Through Pain

We all know not to run through pain, right?  It's a huge no-no.  It leads to injury or exacerbates an existing injury.  I know this firsthand.  I had a stress fracture in my 3rd metatarsal last year because I ran through foot pain.  I had ITBS last year as well, from running through pain.  I know better.  But on Sunday, I had 18 miles on the agenda.  Rather than adjusting my training schedule or cutting back because of pain, I pushed it.  I told myself I was being weak and I could push through.  And I did.

I completed 18 miles and when I stepped off the treadmill my leg almost crumbled beneath me.  Of course, it's my left leg -- it always is.  It's my problem child.  I think it is longer than my right and it causes me all sorts of issues.  Rightie is always fine, never complains, but leftie always has something to say. 

I tried to foam roll but it was far too excruciating.  So was stretching.  So was walking.  How did I manage to run 18 miles and then found it nearly impossible to walk?  How does that work? 

I woke up several times in the night because I had moved my leg and it caused a sharp, shooting pain.  Today, I am limping.  It hurts to walk, bend, stretch, move.  What was I thinking?

It could be something serious but I am crossing my fingers that it isn't.  I am icing, resting, elevating and taking anti-inflammatory drugs.  I am praying that it dissipates and all goes back to normal.  The Chicago Marathon is in 26 days!!  This is my peak week.  Come on body, pull it together and I promise I will never make you run when you're hurt again.  Yes, I've been talking to my body a lot this past weekend.  I hope it forgives me and we can move on. 

Us runners have a real relationship with our bodies, as do all athletes.  We need to work together, mind and body.  I am still learning how to respect my body and how to not ask it to do too much.  It needs rest and love and I can't bully it into running more than it wants to.  I know this but I often ignore it.  I think my body and I need couples therapy.

Here's to hoping that my body mends.  Until it does, I'll be resting and thinking positive thoughts. 


  1. OH NO seriously??? Hoping you are right, that it is nothing serious. Thinking of you and fingers crossed you do not join the pussy posse. Keep me posted.

  2. Oh man --- I loved the 18!!! on the mill. So sorry about the pain that followed. :(
    26 days is PLENTY of time.
    Yes, keep talking to your body - I swear it works [one blonde to another].

  3. Sorry to hear about your leg, I read an article a while back from Jenny Barringer Simpson about injuries, and the main takeaway from the article I thought was "you never want to be able to point exactly where something hurts." She also said that if one side is hurting more than the other you might have a problem with symmetry or balance."

    Also, if you do think one leg is shorter than the other, you may want to see a doctor or chiropractor to get your hips and legs measured to see if indeed one leg is shorter than the other. Not sure if you follow Page, but she talks about it more on this post:

    Hopefully the shooting pain stops soon!

  4. Oh no! Glad you are resting today...sending good vibes your way!

  5. I have always found running long on a treadmill to be hard on the body. Do you put any elevation on it when you run? I've heard that it should be at 1% (or 1 degree) to prevent hip pain and other injury issues

  6. I am always baffled that while you're exercising, you can totally get through something and then you stop and settle out and it's difficult to walk. I wonder if this is our brains overpowering the event or if it's something about increased blood flow to the affected area?

    Hope it is just a fluke and feels 100% back to normal tomorrow.

  7. Keeping my fingers crossed for you!!!! Sometimes the hardest part about running is making our heads listen to our bodies.

  8. i am thinking of you. i have 20 on the schedule for this week and am praying that my hip and calf stay in one piece. like you i just need to make it for the next 26 days....

  9. Oh no! Hopefully it is just some kink that has to be worked through, and will solve itself with a little TLC. Thinking of you!

  10. Kate! I love you for your passion and determination! I knew from our first run together that you are amazingly talented. Over the past 3 years I have seen not only that you are talented but you work EXTREMELY hard. Sometimes you work so hard that you push your body over the edge. Remember that post where you talked about yoga is like giving your body a big hug?? Running can be like that too, sometime we just have to listen to the cues are bodies are giving us. Maybe this week you should give your body a big hug with a lot of massage, yoga, stretching and rest. You have worked so hard and have built up great cardiovascular endurance. There is no doubt that with the fitness you have you can cross that line in 26 days with a smile on your face. But that will take patience and rest this week!! Please be good to yourself!!!!


  11. I'd hit up the PT and get some ART. Sounds like stuff I was dealing with. A good PT and a little ART might fix you right up :) I hope you get lefty on the right page and with the program!

  12. OH KATE....that breaks my heart. I am praying for you that this will heal up QUICK and you will run Chicago pain free!

  13. ughhh that's the worst! Hope you're feeling better SOON! (Also, saw you're reading the Alchemist--love. that. book.)

  14. You are a rockstar. Seriously. I honestly don't understand how anyone can run 18 miles!! When I do 5 on the elliptical, I feel like a champ. Haha.

    I hope you heal QUICKLY!!! Sending healing thoughts your way! xo

  15. that sucks....I'll send you some positive vibes and hope all works out for you. Just rest, rest, rest and then you'll be able to bust it out in time for Chicago!

  16. Oh no! I hope this is nothing serious! Sending some healing vibes your way!

  17. Be careful!!! I know someone who ran through pain and now can't run any longer!

  18. Sending healing vibes your way Kate!

  19. Ah Kate!!! Damn the leftie!!! Hoping you are caring for that leggy now and ready to roll in Chi town in a month!!!

    Thinking of you!!!!!!!!!!!

  20. Kate, I too am running through what I hope is just a 'sore foot'. With a 1/2 in just 2 weeks, I'm giving myself one week of rest. I hope your rest week gives you the recovery you need for your marathon. Please tell me again why we do this?
    Mary Ann

  21. Kate - honey - is there someone who can take a look and give you some idea? This sounds terrible...

    Hope you're feeling better by now. Heal up. XX

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