Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Eye-Opening 11-mile Run

I'm very proud of myself for running 11 miles yesterday. No one else cares, so I will take this opportunity to use this self-absorbed blog to pat myself on the back.

  1. It's the farthest I've ever run in my life! 
  2. I made a plan and followed my plan: 7:30-9:00 run around Bay Farm to Alameda Towne Centre. 9:00-9:30 eat, drink, rest and wait for the AEF, 5k, Run 4 Education, starting at 9:30. 
  3. I was well-prepared in appropriate clothing (it was hot), lots of sunscreen, fitness water, GU, energy bar, ID, AmEx, $20, health insurance card, and the usual iphone, GPS watch & heart rate monitor, sunglasses & hat.
Unfortunately, ~6 miles into my run my right knee started hurting badly! Oh no, smack in the middle! What to do? Should I keep it stiff? Or should I keep it flexible? I should pay more attention to correct running form. Should I stop running or run through the pain? Could I focus on what felt good and ignore what felt bad? After 8 miles I had my 1/2 hr break before the AEF Run 4 Education. I ate, I drank, I stretched, I rested.

4.   Fortunately, during the 5k my knee didn't hurt much. I haven't run a 5k, for time, in so long that I didn't know what time I was hoping for. I finished in 25:49. Hmm. ok. That works out to ~8:20 min/mi. I finished 21st overall (only 82 people participated); I was the 7th woman, and only 2 women in my age group finished before me. All that sounds pretty good, especially considering I had already run 8 miles before starting the 5k!

5.   After the race ProBalance had a massage tent set up and Ada Wells, a Physical Therapist whom I know, was there. So I talked to her about the pain in my knee. She analyzed my stance, squatting, flexibility, exact pain points, etc. and told me it was not my knee! It's my IT band. So the good news is that I know both the prevention (stretching and strengthening) and treatment (ice, foam roller and stretching) so that I can continue my distance training without making it worse. So, the lesson I learned is: don't ignore injuries & don't assume rest is the best treatment. See a professional health care provider!

Now I have a couple weeks to stretch and strengthen my IT bands so that I won't have any pain during my next LONG training run. I'm so proud of myself for my 11 mile accomplishment!

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