Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Tired Legs

The last two weeks, I have taken my running more seriously than I ever have before.  That means not only more miles, but more quality miles.  I ran several days last week during the week, which is frankly not something I have ever spent as much time doing as I should have.  Then on Saturday I ran about 16 miles out at Umstead with my good friend and frequent training partner, Tim. We did a lot of single track, as he is getting ready to run the Mount Mitchell Challenge in February.  http://www.blackmountainmarathon.com/

Normally Tim and I are pretty evenly matched, which is one of the reasons that we run together so often.  However on Saturday, I think he'd been eating his Wheaties, or maybe taking some meth, because I really had to struggle to keep up with him.  I managed to hang on, but it wasn't pretty.

The next day I went back out to Umstead to run with my wife, Wendy.  She needed to do about 14 miles for her current training plan.  We arranged a sitter and headed off to the park to spend some quality time together running as much single track as we could. Let me say, right off the bat, that my wife can run.  We have run multiple marathons together and it is not unusual for her to say good-bye to me somewhere around mile 20.  Sunday was no exception.

I knew right away that I was in for a long morning.  Although it was a beautiful morning and it was great to be in the woods and running with Wendy, my legs just felt heavy. This didn't pose too much of a problem until we got to our first stretch of the single track. Just a few minutes in, right after commenting to Wendy that the stretch we were running was fairly technical and that she should be careful, I tripped on a rock and went down hard.  Fortunately, Wendy was in front of me and didn't see it happen. It was not a graceful move. I did manage to put my wrists out in front of me because everyone knows that when you fall down you should try to break your fall with the back of your wrists, right?  After skidding to a stop, I took a moment to gather myself and off we went.  I was a little dirty but nothing was broken, torn or ruptured.

About an hour later, still on one of the trails, my hip flexors felt like they were on fire, which was a new sensation for me.  This was exacerbated by the hills.

I managed to keep up with her until we got back out to Turkey Creek, although I was sucking some serious wind and had hit the ground one more time.

Eventually, she simply ran away from me. I did all I could to keep up with her. I'm almost foot taller than she is so I decided I would try to catch her by bombing down the hills as fast as I could, using my longer legs to make up time. This worked for a while. I would almost catch her on a downhill and then she would pull away on the uphill.  I finally managed to catch her with about a mile to go.  Too bad I had to basically sprint to do it.  I fell in step with her for about 10 yards and then had to stop and walk. She was waiting for me at the car when I got there. Because she's good person, and a wonderful wife, she was kind enough to lie to me and tell me she hadn't been there long at all and that I hadn't slowed her down during the run.

Monday was my rest day and I didn't do anything that could even remotely be considered exercise.

This evening after I got home from work I jumped on the treadmill to knock out what I thought would be an easy 12 miles.  Boy was I wrong. I felt pretty off for the first mile, but that's not unusual. When I run on the treadmill it takes me a few minutes to work out the kinks and get moving.  Sure enough, after a couple of miles, I started to feel a lot better.  I did notice that that my left shoulder was still feeling the impact of my fall, but nothing to make me stop.  I finished the 12 miles in about 1hr 42min, which was several minutes slower than I had wanted to run.

I can tell that my body is still getting used to running more than a couple of days a week.  I'm scheduled to run 6 tomorrow, 8 Thursday, 20 on Saturday and 10 on Sunday.  I'll let you know how I feel after my Sunday run.

1 comment:

  1. Didn't the NTSB recently recommend a complete ban on texting and cell phones while driving? I think the same would apply to snapping photos while running, esp. on rocky singletrack! Nice photos, though. I hope the shoulder is feeling better.

    With regard to our run on Saturday, there were no wheaties or meth in my system, just my normal drug of choice: caffeine. Plus, I had the benefit of 3 days off prior to our run and Sunday was a rest day for me. You've certainly ramped up your miles of late (100+ miles in 3 weeks is impressive!), so I think you're entitled to have tired legs.

    Great blog! Keep up the writing and running. I'll try not to be too frequent a commentator.