The Running Librarian

In 2004, I ran my first marathon in 4hrs36min. 12 years later, I'm going to attempt my second marathon. I just hope to finish it...

Tuesday, April 27, 2004

[6km in 31 minutes]
Steve's parents bought me a copy of Hal Higdon's marathon book for my 30th birthday (very thoughtful of them). In Hal's training program he recommends only running 32km once through the 18 weeks of training and that's exactly what I was going to have to do on my adjusted plan, so I'm very relieved. I think I'm just going to follow Hal's plan now instead of the Running Room course. I'll keep going to the Thursday night sessions, but Hal doesn't recommend beginners do speed work, and that's what the group is doing now. I'll just do 80% of what everyone else does.

Another discovery I've made is...I really do notice when I've had crappy food to eat. What I mean is, my workouts suffer and I don't feel as good while running when I haven't eaten well. For instance, last night I ate a certain food that goes by the nickname "red hots" and tastes good with relish and sauerkraut...So, I've decided that the month of May is discipline time. No more beer, no more crappy food. I'm going to be low-key all month and try to get as much sleep as I can. All said, I'm sure this won't be as easy to pull off. Hal's book should help to keep me focused.

Sunday, April 25, 2004

I did it! 19km with no pain. Well - no "unsual" pain, that is. Yesterday was a perfect day. Full sun, perfect temperature. My knee seems to have strengthened and was able to carry me the distance. Stretching and weight training has become my number one priority during my training. My knee could easily succumb to injury again, so I have to be very careful.

Thursday night we had a very inspirational speaker - Lisa Bentley (Canadian triathlete - recently won the Austrailian Ironman). The things she said to us were exactly the things I needed to hear. She spoke of injury as being a good thing because it gave her the opportunity to try new & better training methods (cross-training). Lisa goes by a philosophy that attitude is more important than fact. I like that and I'm going to use it.

I'm a little worried about being behind in the training. I've made myself a modified plan. I've missed two of the longest runs (32k each) and I have yet to do a 32k run. I'm only going to be able to one of these long runs. Some people in my group are planning on going beyond 32 to get closer to 42 (the marathon distance). I just don't have time for this, unfortunately. I can't jump back into far distances because then I'll be sure to do damage. There is a 10 percent rule that says you shouldn't increase your distance more than this each week. I'm already going to have to break this rule on my modified plan.

Thursday, April 22, 2004

I ran 5.4 km on the treadmill with no pain! I'm still very cautious. Yesterday I was going to run 5km but I had this itchy feeling deep within my knee, so I immediately stopped and hopped on the stationary bike. I'm afraid I'm going to be very nervous when I run now. I've decided that this weekend will be the ultimatum run for my knee. If I can't do 15km without pain, then I won't be able to continue the marathon training...well, I can continue training, but it won't be for the marathon on May 30th - it will have to be for another marathon, perhaps in the Fall. If I don't experience pain this weekend, I'm going to move forward with the training schedule (and hope that the injury doesn't return). Of course, with 3 weeks lost, this means I'm probably going to feel absolutely awful during and after the marathon. [This is intentional negative thinking to prepare myself for the worst case scenario].

Tuesday, April 20, 2004

Day 16 of my injury and I'm happy to tell you that I was able to run pain free this morning! I only ran 3 km on the treadmill but there was no pain. I felt great and finally got to experience that cardio workout that I've been missing. I wanted to keep on going, but I don't want to push myself prematurely and risk re-injuring myself.

Pain-free running aside, I still don't know if I'll be able to run in Ottawa. I'm going to take it slow this week and ease back into running. That leaves me with only 3 weeks to train for longer running. I'm not sure if that will be enough - but as long as I don't re-injure and feel fine on May 31st, I'm going to try to run it regardless of the fact that I haven't put in the mileage that the Running Room recommends. I'm sure I'm going to feel like hell, but it will just give me insentive to improve for my next marathon.

Thursday, April 15, 2004

It's day 11 of my injury and I'm still not able to run. I've been swimming a bit and lifting weights, but I am craving a good cardio workout where I soak my clothes with sweat. I see people running and I'm envious. I even had a dream that I was running barefoot and free of pain down our carpeted hallway at work. I tried jogging this morning on the treadmill but I had to stop when my knee screamed at me. It's depressing. As each day ticks by my anxiety level rises as it seems more likely I won't be able to run the marathon.

I had a message from Caroline from Sweden. She is doing well and has been very lonesome on her 30k runs. I told her that she should start up a Running Room in Sweden.

Saturday, April 10, 2004

My worst fears have come to be. I injured my knee last Sunday during the half marathon in London. I'm not exactly sure how I did this, but I think it was a combination of: 1) using new orthodics throughout the week but not on the run, 2) very cold temps and no warm-up, 3) pushing myself to go a bit faster, and 4) a trail I hadn't run before with a lot of small ups and downs. I've been icing the knee and haven't run at all. I'm feeling like I'm getting very out of shape since walking has even been painful and I haven't tried to do any other kind of exercise. This may prevent me from being able to do the Ottawa marathon...I'm hoping it will heal quickly, but my training is definitely going to be set back and I don't know if I'll be able to catch up. I think the injury I have is Illiotibial band syndrome (pain on the outside of knee and when I bend it). I'll talk to Dr. Murdie and maybe see my GP too.

Friday, April 02, 2004

Ran hills in the dark in a cold misty rain last night. We did 8 hills. Our hill is a bit of a joke, though. It's not very steep - but do you think I'm going to complain to the others about this? Not on your life. I've been feeling guilty lately about missing runs...But then I heard others say they are going to drop down to 4 days of running now that we've launched into super-long runs.

At our Thursday meeting, I heard some interesting stories from the "Around the Bay" race that many of the group ran in. One poor girl ran in her new orthodics and developed a very serious blood-blister on the bottom of her foot. She also stepped in a pot hole with the same foot and broke her baby toe. Because she had been in so much pain from the blister, she just kept running with the broken toe and actually finished the 30km race! They took her to the hospital shortly afterward. She's off for a week but plans to get back at it after that. Somebody made the comment that "there is a difference between Rambo and Nimbo". Laura reported that after the 30km she developed severely swollen fingers. I found this interesting because I too experienced this. I think it's just a hydration issue and I'm going to work on avoiding this. We learned that sports gels might be the culprit since they require extra fluid for digestion (I had taken one and Laura had taken two).

I'm running a half marathon with Jen this Sunday in London. It's what she's been training for, so we probably won't actually run it together (she'll be striving for a good time and I'll just be striving). I'm nervous about the whole race environment -- but that's the reason I'm doing this so I won't be so naive when I go to Ottawa. I'm off to Kingston for work next week and I might consider running with the Running Room people there.