Running Recovery

At the end of February, I injured myself on a long run and have been slowly coming back from it. I’m now back to running about every other day, and I have been able to cautiously increase the distance little by little – I’m now up to about 5km per run. I don’t feel any pain, and could probably run longer, but I am going to go slow. I’m not training, after all. I just enjoy running and I don’t want to jeopardize that freedom by getting injured again.

I also have to accept that my body doesn’t recover as fast as it used to. 😁

Pick-Me-Up

Photo info: Apple iPhone 12 mini, 4.2mm, f/1.6, 1/12800 sec, ISO32
“Found Smile” Cedar Park, 2022

Today’s run was great for a couple of reasons. First, my left leg (which has been giving me trouble) didn’t hurt at all, and secondly, I saw a cool smiley face in the street. 😀

I haven’t been able to run very far before my left knee, or rather the soft area behind my left knee, starts hurting. So I have been trying to just run a few kilometers while it heals. And today, I ran over 3 km with no pain! I think I will gradually increase the distance, while taking one or two rest days in between runs. Should be good, right?

I hope you had a nice day! またね

Virtual Marathon Struggle

Photo info: Apple iPhone 12 mini, 2.71mm, f/2.2, 1/460 sec, ISO25
“Virtual Marathon” Cedar Park, 2022

I switched my Austin Marathon registration from in-person to Virtual, which meant that I could run the distance anytime between February 20 (the date of the in-person race) and March 13. After looking at my calendar, today seemed like a good day to run the Virtual Marathon.

So at 10:45 am, I headed out to run the same course that I ran in January, which is basically four 7-mile loops from my house. This meant that I could stop at the house for water, snacks, and bathroom break 3 times. The weather was perfect: sunny and in the 40s F.

The first 7-mile loop was good, and I was taking it easy to conserve energy. But the second loop was when things got difficult. My legs felt dead… no energy! At the half-way point, I had my water and snacks, but when I started the third loop, my left leg could hardly move. It was not good. But I decided to start walking and hopefully it would loosen up. It sort of worked, but within a mile, I started feeling a bit of pain in my left leg, so I began walking again.

At this point I was worried that I would not be able to continue. We are going on vacation in a few days, and I didn’t want to get injured. So I kept walking and thinking about if I wanted to call it quits or not. Well, alternating walking and jogging a seemed okay, so I persevered and completed the third loop. I’d say I walked 80 percent of the time.

When I started the final loop I knew I would be walking the whole way (except crossing streets). My walking pace wasn’t too bad, and after I resigned myself to finishing slowly, my spirits rose, and when my Strava said I had reached 26.2 miles, I was so relieved! I had completed the Virtual Marathon without injury! Of course, I am not happy that it was such a struggle, but there were some small victories, the main one being that I didn’t give up, of course. 😌

Anyways, I’m not sure exactly why my legs were so dead, but perhaps it’s because my running is not as consistent as it was last year. Of course that must be the reason. 😀 またね!

Latest vs Original

Photo info: FUJIFILM X-E4, 21.4mm, f/8, 1/100 sec, ISO1250
“New and Very Old” Cedar Park, 2022

My new pair of On Cloud running shoes arrived. I usually wait for the 20-30% members-only sale at REI to buy my next pair, so when it comes time to switch over, I have shoes ready. The “experts” say that you should replace your running shoes after 400-500 miles or so, and that would mean every couple of years for me. But this past year I have been running much more, and only after 5 months, I have run 550 miles! It seems like I am just breaking in my new shoes!

Anyways, in the photo above are my brand new On Cloud running shoes (4th pair) which I will switch over to when I feel like my current shoes are ready to be retired to everyday casual use. The other pair of shoes in the photo are my original On Cloud running shoes from 2014 which I have been using as gardening/yard work/garage shoes. I will use my 2nd pair of On Clouds for that use. So it’s time to say goodbye to the old grey and orange shoes. Thank you for all the miles (and lawns mowed)!

Running on Vacation During the Pandemic

Photo info: Apple iPhone 12 mini, 1.55mm, f/2.4, 1/75 sec, ISO50
“Running” Torrance, 2021

I’ve been trying to keep to my running schedule while we are on holiday in SoCal, but it’s been difficult. The main reason is that Torrance is so crowded with people that it’s a hassle to run on the sidewalks and streets in a socially distanced way. In order to avoid others, I am constantly having to switch to the other side of the road or sidewalk, or hop from the sidewalk to the road or vice-versa.

At my neighborhood in Texas, the roads are very wide so I can pretty much run there and avoid most contact with others. It makes for a relaxing run. But in Torrance, constantly having to keep an eye on my surroundings gets old real quick… and it makes for a mentally exhausting hour. Still, I am getting a few miles in on my run days, which is better than nothing.