Something happened on Sunday that I wasn’t expecting .. I ran 15.3 miles almost completely pain free. I went into the weekend thinking that my long run would be somewhere between 12-14 miles .. but hearing that my brother and our friend Ben (who are also training for the Cox marathon) ran 16 miles on Saturday made me that much more determined. So I upped my mileage goal for the next day while also telling myself that I’m still injured and it’s okay to stop whenever I need to.
But the run ended up being really great! I did two 7.5 mile loops making sure my house was at the center so I could stop in real quick for some water and a GU (the only time I stopped running). The most challenging part was making this a tempo run and keeping the pace around 9:00 or 9:15 rather than my marathon goal pace of around 8:45. A big part of reducing knee pain for me is running with a cadence of around 180 steps per minute.. so that requires shortening my stride. Of course this can be accomplished at any pace, but I’ve gotten used to keeping up with that cadence while running at a pace around 8:30. Slowing down was tough .. I’d think I was doing a good job and then look down at the garmin and be running at 8:40. Whoops.
But thinking about my pace so much kept my mind off my knee and I hardly noticed pain until about mile 8 and it was very mild after that. I couldn’t believe it! I had zero expectations that this would happen so soon. Needless to say I am now that much more confident that my knee will be healed enough to run a marathon in less than 3 months.
Only other set back to Sundays run was that I was definitely dehydrated.. I wasn’t expecting to run such a long distance so didn’t properly plan for it earlier in the week. I could really feel the dehydration in the last few miles. And then I drank a smoothie too soon after the run ended which was a horrible idea cause it made me puke. Oh the joys of long distance running!
Monday my knee felt surprisingly good so I ended up going to kick boxing at the gym and then an hour of yin yoga which was very much needed since my muscles were feeling super tight.
And today I get to try a new procedure at physical therapy .. dry needling. It’s a PT’s version of acupuncture. Supposedly it helps loosen tight muscles up almost immediately. Don’t know why I’m nervous about a few small needles in my quad when I’m covered in tattoos .. but we’ll see how this goes.