Friday, January 29, 2010

Hangin' in There

Shopping for 100s, TrailRunner Magazine showing up, and a deadline looming to publish the Western Reserve TRAIL Running newsletter...reminders everywhere about the trails. Add in Facebook posts about all of those fellow crazy folks who are running the original Buckeye Trail 50K tomorrow...unofficially and just for fun. I should BE there. We're also in the middle of a string of nights with clear skies, downright brittle temperatures in the single digits and a moon so bright that it beckons me to lace up and head out under it's light. Oh yea, my new trail shoes should arrive any day at Vertical Runner...the Vasque Transistor. I've been reading race reports and viewing photos from the Bear 100 which takes place the same weekend as the Akron Marathon. Assuming I get my strength back in my left leg, I am undecided on my fall schedule and I really like what I see at the Bear. I'm also not opposed to returning to Oil Creek again a few weeks later. One or the other, of course. Anyway, I fear I'm becoming a "bear" of sorts to be around. Edgy, grumpy...yea...it's a fact. Not proud of it, though. I know I control my own attitude and it's all on me...I'm just in a funk, I guess. It is what it is.

I do feel stronger but don't feel like it would be wise to run any trails although I want to more than anything right now. I would say it's been awhile since I've felt anything adductor related...even longer from the iliopsoas muscle. I wouldn't say they are fully healed, though...at least the adductor isn't. When I do the exercises to strengthen my core area, I can still tell a distinct difference in strength and stability when comparing left and right adductors. With the exercises shown to me by my physical therapist, it is extremely easy to isolate the different muscles and quickly identify what is still weak and what is not. The goal is to make the left feel like the right. That's my "green light" to head to the trails for a test run. My goal is to be there by the 3rd week in February...an incredibly 3 short weeks from now. Otherwise, bye bye MMT. The other thing I feel quite clearly is weakness in the extreme lower abs. That is a major central area where so many things connect and the overall strengthening I'm working on should help that area. I'd say when I feel discomfort during a run, it is in that area. I really feel nothing at all in the adductor area during runs anymore. A good sign, for sure. (Not sure where the adductor and psoas muscles are? Click here.)

So for now, I'm hanging in there. Weekly mileage is in the range of 30-40 miles..all road...and all in paces from 8:30 to 9:20 per mile. No concern is being paid to pace...I just run the pace that allows me run a nice and easy stride with no labored breathing or extended strides. "Steady-state running," as I like to call it. With any pronounced soreness in my lower abs, I take a rest day. I'm not trying to do anything more than keep a good base of fitness and not gain wait while my muscles heal and get stronger. I'll buy those Transistors when they show up...in cash, of course. No more credit! I've been saving my "allowance" to buy those shoes so I hope I like them.

I often think about what got me where I am today. I'm convinced it was my self-inflicted "work-load" last year. It wasn't necessarily the 3 100-milers, though. I believe it was things like racing a 5-miler on Labor Day weekend when I wasn't trained for that kind of running and also, running the Akron Marathon a week after the YUT-C 50K and 2 weeks before my 3rd 100-miler, the Oil Creek 100. Just too much. Would I change any of it? I'd still do all 3 100s but I wouldn't race that 5-miler and I wouldn't have run the Akron Marathon. Oh yea, I forgot about marathon #25, the Bobcat Trail Marathon in November. I wouldn't miss that one, either. :-)

Happy Trails, everyone!

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