Wednesday, February 08, 2012
So, I'm back again.
I haven't been kind to myself and my body got mad at me. I am currently recovering from lower back, both knees, and right ankle injuries. The only thing really bothering me still are my knees. In order to keep my back happy, I started using the foam roller. Sadly, I don't use it nearly as much as I should. :( After everything, I still don't stretch very often.
Allow me to reiterate what I have always known, but don't always do==> STRETCHING IS IMPORTANT.
Well, I almost always stretched after every run, but when running as much as I was, the amount of stretching has to match. See, I got the original injury --the back injury-- because (1) I didn't increase my mileage incrementally and (2) because I wasn't stretching accordingly. I would like to believe increasing from running 20 miles/week to running 40 miles/week in one week (preparing for a marathon) wouldn't have been such a bad idea if I'd increased from stretching abt 1.5 hours a week to at least 3 or 4. Unfortunately, I will never know. While it was a lot of fun to run 40 miles/week, I know I have to build back up to it like a responsible adult. lol
So, on top of being injured and still not stretching, I was urged by a doctor to not run the upcoming marathon. Did I listen? lol Of course not. By mile 10, I wanted to cry and wished an infirm van was following me so I could quit. Did I quit? Yes. I had to-- I started feeling pain in places I didn't know pain could come from and I recognized the lower back (that I was ignoring) was sending pain to other places I couldn't ignore. After running 13.1, I finally listened. The doctor had given me great medicines the week before and I considered medicating before or even halfway through the run. But, I don't like taking meds unless I have to and I incorrectly believed my lower back wasn't THAT angry with me. Clearly, I was wrong about my lower back. lol
So, that marathon was on Dec 18th and here it is, Feb 8th and I still cannot run. The doctor told me, after another visit, that I cannot run another marathon for one to two years until my knees have healed. I almost cried. He told me the 2nd marathon I had scheduled for Feb 11th absolutely wasn't going to happen. In order to keep me honest, he told me he'd had to tell runners who ignored his advice and subsequently injured themselves again, that they would never again be able to run. He had to refer them to the pool. *gasp* I like the pool, but not when its my only option. Still tho, I ALMOST ignored him until the physical therapist --3 weeks after seeing the doctor-- almost failed at not laughing at me when I asked about running my Feb marathon. This happened during my initial appt 3 weeks ago.
Sooooo, I haven't been able to run since November (except for that one day in December when I ignored the doc's advice), but I continued to eat like I was running. I've gained pounds (but not in any of the places I could've used them...lol). Since I discovered the love of running, it took over my life and there's pretty much nothing else I love to do. That makes it hard to workout.
I started a kickboxing class when I moved to California and fell in love with it. I did the class 5 days/week and ran 5 days/week. When I got up to 20 miles/week, I stopped the class. So, once my knees and lower back started cooperating, I went into the gym and started up again with the heavy bag. I would foam roll after every session so my back wouldn't hate me the next day. After 2x b/c pain started kicking in, I realized you do need your knees in order to kickbox. lol I backed off of the heavy bag and became good friends with the speed bag.
When I first started with the speed bag, I was TERRIBLE. I mean horribly terrible. lol It took about 3 sessions to really get it together. I'm still not as fast as the men that use the speed bag, but I have reason to suspect they've been using it more than just a couple of weeks. lol I try to go every Tues & Thurs (to the gym near me, not to the one where I was doing the kickboxing) to hit the speed bag and do a few kicks. I'm proud that my speed bag sessions are easily b/t 1-1.5 hours. Last time I went (didn't go yesterday), I even jumped rope (on a heavily padded mat & with running shoes on) for about 12 minutes. I think it was 15 minutes with the breaks. You'll be happy to know my knees didn't hate me after that. :-)
I started lifting weights again. Okay, I thought about starting weight lifting again. I tried to start a few months ago, but the men in the gym kinda looked at me like I was alien. I don't know why, but it made me feel uncomfortable and I stopped. Two nights ago, I pulled out my dumbbells and did one exercise for my triceps. I was HORRIFIED at how low I had to set the weight. All of my progress, gone. To be fair, most of my progress was made in 2009. I haven't really lifted seriously since then. I did P90X and Insanity several times since then and I suspect that's the only reason why my arms didn't turn to complete mush.
I said all of that to say, because I was stupid and caused my own injuries, I am now trying to get back into working out while doing something other than running. Unfortunately, the pool here is not open, or I would've been ALL over it. So, weight lifting again on MWF. Yes! Speed/heavy bag on T/Th. Yes! Stretching & foam roller every day. Yes! Biking (that I dislike) on T/Th. Yes!
(Can you believe the physical therapist told me to bike for 10 minutes a day to see how my knees feel and if they feel normal, to increase in 5 minute increments??? Doing so little is killing me!)