Friday, April 29, 2011

Oh my aching hip!

It’s a Friday night and I’m sitting in the recliner, icing my hip, reflecting on a (nearly) successful week.  After starting off the month with record mileage, I’ve been feeling pretty confident and looking forward to my next challenge.  I had eased up on my mileage a bit last week; my last “hoorah” before getting serious about training for my next half marathon on May 29.  But this week I wanted to be back in full force and accumulating a solid 25 miles this week.  The miserable weather from last weekend’s 5k was replaced with more seasonable temps, and it was nice to get out and enjoy the climate.  I was able to run five times this week, but sadly none of the runs had me feeling very energetic, and I’ve really started to doubt my level of fitness. 
Sunday was Easter.  I had every intention of doing my long-ish run of 8 miles, but I ran out of time and had to cut it short.  It was such a beautiful day and I enjoyed most of it with my horse, so by the time I headed out for my run I was already late for my Easter obligations.  So 8 miles turned into 4, but I was honestly quite tired from the previous day’s 5k race and my endless frolicking through the woods with my horse, so I was perfectly fine with shortening the run. 
Monday my legs were quite dead, and I certainly should have used it as a rest day.  But… all my pals were going running and I didn’t want to be left out (plus what else would I do with my lunch break…eat??) so I ran with Todd, Jaimee and Kerri out to the ice cream stand.  My legs were so heavy though and I told them from the start that I would be slow.  Sure enough, I spent the entire run trailing behind them and in some cases I was so far behind that they were out of sight.  In hindsight, I really should have taken Monday as a rest day.
Tuesday I forced myself to take a rest day.  So, naturally my legs felt totally fine and willing to run.  I settled for two 2 mile walks.
Wednesday we did Jaimee’s route.  This is the long route that we need to run at a quick pace in order to get back to work in time.  Kerri took control of that route, leading us from start to finish.  She seems to have cultivated this new surge of energy and she’s on fire, presumably due to her stellar 5k win over the weekend.  It was also unusually warm, with temperatures in the 80’s and a hot sun that just baked me over the hot pavement.  It probably wouldn’t have felt so severe if it hadn’t been 50 degrees cooler just a few days earlier when I was running.  Hopefully I’ll get accustomed to this warmer weather soon.
Thursday only Jaimee and I ran, and since Jaimee was tired from her 5k the night before, thankfully she was willing to run slow with me.  I’m really starting to feel like a slow poke, always running in the back of the pack and guiltily being thankful for my friend’s tired legs.  In any event, we decided to hit the trail again and did a long slow run along the Merrimack River.  This is the kind of run you have to do slow, at least on the river portion; otherwise a stray root might send you careening into the river.  This, as you will learn shortly, is not so farfetched in my world.  The route is fun, scenic, and easy.  It’s a great alternative and will probably be used frequently during the hot summer months because of its shade and breeze coming off the water. 
This brings me to today.  Working at home today, I was forced to run solo.  The good part about this, though, is that I can do a longer run since I don’t need such long shower time when working from home.  I had a route planned in my head that encompassed both trails and roads, and I expected it would be at least 5 miles.  This was important to me, because my total mileage for the month was 85-ish miles, and I really wanted to get to 90 miles for the month.  It’s really just an arbitrary number, but it’s the little things that motivate me.  So off I went, on my solo run, and two miles into it I ran into trouble.  On a downhill section of a trail, I tripped over a root and had to seriously scramble to avoid eating dirt.  I managed to recover, but it forced me to land extremely heavy on my right leg.  I had an immediate pain in my right hip socket area.  It didn’t seem too bad so I ran through it, although running uphill was a bit of a challenge.  By the end of my run I felt ok, but after three more hours of sitting at my desk, my hip stiffened up ferociously and by the end of the day I could barely walk.
So here I am: A Friday night, sitting in the recliner, soaked in Max Freeze, numb from 7 hours of ice on the hip, loaded up with Motrin and Microbrew.  I’m hoping that sleep works wonders tonight and that I wake up tomorrow pain free.  After all, tomorrow is the last day of the month and due to my shortened run today, I am at 89.78 miles for the month.  I don’t care if I’m on crutches tomorrow; I will run at least a quarter mile to make it to 90!

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