I’ll be honest, I haven’t been the best or most consistent about marathon training. I’ll drop a day or two and then it becomes a week (sometimes more). I got sick last month and was derailed for a WHILE. On Sunday, I did a ten-mile run and now my shins really don’t like me. At first, I was positive it was just initial soreness, but attempting to run last night, I made it about a mile before they became pretty uncomfortable.

My apprehension is running so much that I end up injuring myself, giving myself shinsplints or worse. I set out to go run a trail today, only to get to the park as it was closing. No run. I have every intention of getting up early in the morning to try to run before work. I’ve never been successful at these kinds of plans, but as September closes and I creep closer to my October 30 marathon, I’m more and more committed to crossing the finish line.

The challenge and difficulty with running is that in many ways, it’s very inconsistent. I’ve never been good about keeping a pace, especially if I’m taking walk breaks — taking walk breaks meaning I can recover, but it also means I’m more likely to push the tempo when I am running.

I really, really, REALLY want to do this race, but part of me is wondering if maybe it wouldn’t be a good idea to skip the October race and focus on getting in shape for Big Sur training.

I dunno . . . It’s just a thought, but I’m a little discouraged with so little time left and the fact that I have only scratched at the surface of long runs.  I haven’t decided what to do, but for now I’m trying to remain optimistic and believe in myself. (Plus, my training is giving me some sexy legs — not ready to relinquish that just yet.)

Thoughts? I’m open to all opinions — I don’t want to get hurt, but I’m trying to decide if it’s wiser to push myself for 7 more weeks or if I should call it a wash (the race doesn’t even have a finisher’s medal – a little ridiculous, if you ask me . . . if I’m going to run 26.2 miles, you should give me some bling, please).

Seriously, I’d love some advice here . . .

I’m posting this video because I love it and it makes me happy — it’s definitely on my favorite running playlist.


3 responses to “Ouchies

  1. Robyn, I’ve been through a lot of this before. I had terrible shin problems for the first 3 years that I ran, every time ending up in situations like you’re in now.

    First: address the shin issues. It’s probably too close to your marathon to make any serious changes to your running form, but you should aim to get past the shin stuff, not just to deal with it. I wrote a post about what I did to fix my shin problems, here:

    The biggest thing I’d say is to be happy with running slow for now. Get out of the mindset that makes you run fast in between your walk breaks. It makes a big difference in the stress your legs (and body) feel, and once you get a lot of miles and a marathon or two under your belt, it’ll be much easier to work on speeding up. (In my experience, anyway.)

    Without knowing what your training schedule has been like and what you still have left, it’s hard for me to say whether or not I think you should skip this marathon and shoot for Big Sur. Can you give me some of that info?

    • Hi Matt,

      Thanks for the advice — I’ll definitely be reading and studying your shins post. The marathon is on October 30, I have only done about 10 miles of long running so far — not exactly great. I’ve really fallen short with strength training, too, unfortunately and my hips and back feel much more achy when I do complete longer runs. I still have plenty of long runs, so if I keep up with the training for this race, I would probably not have much of a taper, if any at all. I’m already registered for Big Sur, which is in May 2011, so if I choose to back out of this race, I’ll (theoretically) have more time to get in shape, get moving and training (better) for Big Sur.

      I talked with my boyfriend last night (he’s not a runner, but he’s good listener) and he thought maybe I should try to keep up with training for a few more weeks and see how I’m feeling then. We’ll see . . . I am just trying to decipher whether or not I’m just psyching myself out or if I’m just being very cautious.

  2. There is a GREAT book about running injuries and their prevention: The Runners’ Repair Manual by Dr. Murray Weisenfeld (http://amzn.to/b2TslX). I can loan you my copy.

    But my approach to running was always to take it easy and to build up speed or mileage very slowly by no more than 10% per week. Keeping a running log really helps with that.

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