Saturday, February 15, 2014

A valuable lesson I don't understand . . .

My foot is hurting again and I can't run right now.   Got to admit this is FRUSTRATING!!

Now don't misunderstand . . . I am NOT frustrated because my foot hurts . . . I am frustrated because I MADE it hurt and I didn't realize it at the time!  Let me explain.

My last post was about Wednesday's awesome run . . . my first run since surgery!  I was trying very hard to listen to my body (that is to say my foot!) to see how it was reacting.  I had promised my doctor (and more importantly myself!) that is I felt ANY pain whatsoever, I would stop running immediately.  And with 100% honestly I can say I never felt any pain.  None.  Zilch!

But I have to admit that during the run I did often question myself about how far I was actually running.  I wondered if maybe I should only start out at a mile or two.  But the doctor said the key was PAIN!  If it hurt I should stop.  So I didn't stop!  I ran 4.3 miles!  Never any pain.

The next day (Thursday) I did feel pain . . . but it was muscle pain!  My foot still didn't hurt.  I decided to take Thursday as a rest day so I didn't run at all.

Then Friday I went for a run.  My foot was slightly sore as were my muscles . . . but this really isn't unusual.   I started very slowly.  My foot burned.  It never eased off any.  So I quit at about 1/4 mile, turned around and walked home.  The rest of the day my foot hurt / burned and today the foot pain continues.

I don't believe I have done anything that has caused any serious damage.  But I do believe I did too much running and that inflamed my foot  So I'm taking a few days off again until the pain goes away and then I'll start back training.  But with much less mileage initially.  And I'll build up my miles fairly slowly.

But if pain can't be my guide to exercise intensity and duration . . . what can?  This is VERY frustrating!!  How can I know if I'm doing too much?  And just as importantly . . . how can I know when I'm NOT doing all I really can do?

Finding that "right" balance is critical and I'm honestly LOST if I can't use pain as my guide.

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Littleton, North Carolina
World's Slowest Runner . . . well, at least in contention for the honor. Just your average "below average" runner.