When I was in Oregon earlier this week, I set out for a 10-mile run on Sunday morning. I created a 5-mile loop (which I planned to do twice) around Mal’s grandma’s neighborhood, grabbed by Garmin, and hit the pavement. I looked forward to a nice, long run outside in ‘warm’ weather without snow covering the ground.
The first couple of miles of my run were really tough, but I just figured my body wasn’t quite warmed-up yet. Plus, I had just woken up about an hour before, so I probably needed to shake off the cobwebs. Well, things didn’t get any better as my run progressed: I walked around Mile 3.5 and then again around Mile 4. My lungs burned, my legs felt like lead, and my IT bands were insanely tight. My body just did not want to run, so I finished the 5-mile loop and called it quits.
The next day, my IT bands and shins were so sore!! I hadn’t run outside since January, so I assume making the transition from treadmill to pavement upset my legs.
On the flight home to Boston, I read the March issue of Runner’s World.
In it, I discovered an article about how to avoid common running injuries: The Big 7 Body Breakdowns. Just what I needed! I’m not sure the timing could have been more perfect!!
There was definitely something going on with my IT bands that day, so I closely read the article. I’m also hypersensitive to any sort of weird pain in that area since I’ve struggle with IT band issues in the past, so I took note of the recommended ways to prevent and recover this potential injury:
- Strengthen the hip abductors with lateral side steps, side leg lifts, and one-legged squats.
- Use a foam roller before and after you run: Rest the outside of your thigh on top of the roller, and roll your IT band from your knee to your hip.
- Hiking and bicycling can aggravate ITBS. Instead, swim, pool-run, and use an elliptical trainer.
- Change directions every few laps while on a track.
- Limit how often you do hilly routes.
- Learn to shorten your stride so that your weight centers on the front of the heel or the midfoot as you land.
So, before and after my run this afternoon, I used my foam roller. It seemed to help because I didn’t experience any pain and only a little bit of tightness.
I finished 8 miles in 1:14:23 (9:17 pace) and felt pretty good. It took my legs a little while to warm-up, but once I got going, I was okay.
The Runner’s World article discusses how to avoid and recover from the most common running injuries, so if you’re struggling with something, be sure to check it out. It was really helpful to me.
Here’s where I snapped my dinner photos:
And here’s where I actually ate my dinner:
Mal and I probably only eat at our dining room table once a week or so. We like the coffeetable better!
Mal just went out to grab firewood, so I guess we’re having a fire tonight!
Enjoy the evening!