Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Taking a Break

I haven't posted much lately. Things have been hectic, but they always are so that's not really much of an excuse. I guess I just haven't felt a need to share.

I was talking to my sister the other day and she informed me that a couple of her friends missed the posts and want me to post more, just not about running. So I guess I'll apologize for boring you with the details of my running. I understand that it may seem irrelevant or boring, but it is actually quite important to me on a number of levels.

First, I only have one body and everything depends on it working properly. Running has cured my high blood pressure and helped relieve day to day stress. I also suffer from migraines which comes with an associated elevated risk of stroke so maintaining good cardiovascular fitness is important to protect by brain.

Second, it helps meet my need for competition. I'm only competing against myself, but that's enough. Having goals drives me to train and gives purpose to the training. It's disappointing when result don't come, but when I have a breakthrough race like I did in my last race of the season it feels great.

I don't think I wrote about it, but on May 19 I ran a 5k around the Texas state capitol. I averaged 7:36 per mile and beat my personal record by a minute and a half. I followed that up about an hour later by running the Congress Avenue Mile. My mile was relatively slow because my legs were shot from the 5k, but I'm still excited by my 5k performance a month later. But after I finished I realized that I needed to take a break. My hips hurt, I had sharp shooting pains in my right shin, my right foot was sore again and had started having shooting pains in the ball, and my hamstrings were very tight and tender. I'd started my marathon training at the beginning of August and trained hard with only a week break after the Dallas Marathon in December and two weeks after the Austin Marathon in February. I'd exceeded all of my goals, but now my body was starting to break down and needed a break.

So I actually haven't run since before Memorial Day. It's only been a little over 3 weeks, but it feels like forever. Am I really a runner? I don't feel any compulsion to put on my shoes and go out for run. In fact, I'm appreciating having a little bit more time each day. Part of me dreads starting running again but not for the reason you might think. I enjoy running, but I'm afraid that I'll be so out of shape that it won't feel good and that I'll be nearly starting over. Plus, I still have my niggling aches and pains.

I received notification that I didn't get a lottery spot in the New York Marathon so my winter marathon plans are up in the air but I'm thinking of doing the Marathons of Texas series and doing Dallas in December, Houston in January, and Austin in February. Regardless I won't start marathon training again until after Labor Day. Between now and then it will all be about losing weight, regaining flexibility, doing some strength training, and having an enjoyable summer.


GuateMom said...

I don't mind you writing about running some of the time :) Sorry you didn't get a spot in the NY Marathon. Maybe next year when I have vacation time again and can actually go to keep you safe in the big bad city.

Clayton said...

I've enjoyed reading your blog and getting to know you. I am a runner as well and slightly OCD. I'd love to run a marathon with you sometime. I must say that I had no idea that you were formerly LDS. You have had a facinating life thus far and I wish you peace and happiness in your endeavours.

Bull said...

Thanks clayton. Have you run a marathon before? If you get Texas way for a marathon let me know.

Sister Mary Lisa said...

Interesting stuff. I hope you enjoy your break and that returning to running will be less painful than you think it may be..