Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Injury update and race goals

Thanks for everyone's concern about my leg/ankle issue - just wanted to give a little update here. I told most of the story a couple weeks ago, in posts here and here. The basic recap of those is that my lower left leg started hurting, I rested it for about 5 days, tried running again, and it still hurt. Saw my doctor and had an x-ray which didn't show the stress fracture that I had feared.

After that there was nothing to do but rest it more. So I did that - for two weeks, even skipping the Lake of the Sky trail marathon which I had already registered for (my first DNS!) Unfortunately, I didn't do it very smart - I should have switched to some cross-training and continued all my core workouts. What I did do was absolutely nothing - and the fact that I allowed myself the luxury of a couple beers most nights meant I put some  weight back on over those two weeks.

At any rate, last week I did a couple of test runs - 3 miles Wednesday and 5 miles Friday - on which the leg felt absolutely fine. That set me up to do the Emerald Bay Trail Run on Sunday, a 7+ miler that went pretty well. I thought I felt a couple twinges from the ankle near the end, but it wasn't bad at all.

So this week is technically the taper week for the Lake Tahoe Marathon, but I'm using it as a "get back into the swing of it" week. I had some easy intervals (8 x 2:00) on Tuesday, and easy half hour this morning, another 30 minutes plus strides tomorrow, and a really easy keep-'em-loose run on Saturday. So far between yesterday and today, I've been able to feel the leg ankle pain slightly more each day. This despite the treatments I've been giving it.

I haven't been icing it - my doctor didn't think that would be helpful, but I may start up again. I've been using arnica gel on it, at the suggestion of my mother, although I don't have a lot of faith in it. Ibuprofen does help when it's feeling sore. And this morning I tried some KT Tape, in a shin splint wrap, to see if that would make any difference. Didn't seem to this morning, but I'll try the wrap again a little more aggressively tomorrow morning.

So what does that mean for the Lake Tahoe Marathon this weekend? This was really my goal race for the year, what I've been training for over the past 10 months.Before this injury, my goal for the run would have been to run under 3:30, and hopefully to finish in the men's top 25 and pick up one of those ridiculous yellow finisher windshirts. To do that, I was going to try to run the first half in under 1:40, around 7:30 pace - then slow on the hills and pick back up for the last 5 miles. I had been feeling pretty good about that plan, but don't think I'm up for it now. My adjusted plan calls for starting out in the 8:00 per mile range, doing what I can on the hills, and seeing how the last section shakes out. Hoping I don't turn this into a sufferfest, like it has been a couple of years. I have a feeling I may be suffering differently by the end of it - but we'll see.

Addendum: Thinking about this while running this morning - I'd kind of just like to PR on Sunday. As my marathon PR is on the Tahoe Marathon course, and is 3:54:14 (from all the way back in 2007), I'm pretty confident that I can do it. I mean, three weeks ago I was fairly sure I could run near 3:30 on this course. But at any rate, I may take it even easier in the early miles to make sure I don't blow up later and miss a chance for a marathon PR to add to my 5K, 10K and half marathon bests this year.

1 comment:

SnowLeopard said...

Oh Turi, I'm so sorry dude. I can relate to being depressed at not being able to race the way I'd planned (or at all!). I hope the new taping method works out- maybe you just strained something- sounds like the rest did help, and at least you get to run on Sunday... Good luck to ya! :)