I had a bad run on Saturday.
There I said it! Why is this such a big deal? People have bad runs all the time myself included.
There was the super hot 6 miler I did last summer which was torture. There was the horrible 15 miler I did where I was way too cocky when I started late and didn't carb load because "it's only 2 more miles than a half" in December which was hell on earth.
There are many more but this is different because this is the first run I have ever started and not finished the distance I set out for. Like seriously. Even after the marathon when I was recovering, I said I was going to run for 1 mile and I did.
Now what caused this? Crazy shin pain. I haven't had pain like that since i started running years ago. I felt a slight ache after about 5 minutes but it went away when I stopped to walk. After about a mile, the pain was more prominent. Then after a 1.5 miles, I stopped to stretch and I couldn't move.
I knew this was it. I was about half way through 3 miles. I knew I needed to just turn around and get home as quickly as possible. I was able to insert a few run cycles of 30 seconds but most of it was just walking in the hot sun.
I was sad. I was disappointed. Of course I have skipped training runs for various reasons or shortened them the morning of but I had never left my house and not completed what I started.
I was bummed and started doubting myself especially with dopey sign up on the horizon. But I had to nip that in the bud. Me being logical and analytical, I knew I had to figure out why this was happening and what I could do to fix it in the future.
What I learned when I analyzed my situation:
1. Alcohol and food issues
I only had cider beers the day before and wasnt hungover but I also didn't eat a large dinner before bed. So by the time I went to run, I hadn't had a real meal in 16 hours. So I was running on empty.
I have to drink water and have a snack before runs on the weekend.
2. I hadn't rolled
I didn't roll or stretch the night before. Walking 14000 steps the day before I knew better. Especially since my legs have been sore for the past week. But I was just too lazy to do it. Bad call!
3. Sleep and time
I slept enough-10 hours-but by the time I got going it was 930 which was much to late on this humid weekend (the temp went from 58 when I started to 73 in about 30 minutes). If I'm going to run on weekends, I need an early start.
I wore my normal clothes I wear for 630 runs which is 2 shirts. It was fine when I started but much to hot when I finished. I also didn't have a hat which I needed with the sun being so bright.
5. Lack of time
It was Ralph's sister and nieces's last weekend in LA so we had spent tues night, thurs night and Saturday afternoon and evening with them and not to mention it was Easter! Also we hung out with Damian on Friday and I had to go to brand new tires as well. I was exhausted and overbooked and stressed from my regular errands of the weekend and I was very discombobulated. I had already postponed my run once the day before so I felt pressure to get it in on Sunday.
So In analyzing all of this walking home, I learned I HAVE to monitor all of these things going into another hot summer in Pasadena. Mornings are wonderful but late mornings are HOT!
However it's not all sad! No more pity party for me! I got home and atr and rolled and stretched and felt much better.
This story does have a silver lining though. I was able to redeem myself. After Easter brunch with my boyfriends family and catching up on chores and emails I felt ready to run again.
Something else new for me: I've never done two a days before.
So my boyfriend, who said he would run with me in the morning but told me he was too tired, and I went to the rosé bowl to run around 7 PM. I had rolled for about 15 minutes earlier in the day and guess what?
Shin pain was gone! We did a lap so even though I was sad I didn't do 4 miles initially, I ended up doing 5.5 miles and I was happy with that! It's so true not everything will always go your way but it will be for the best.
So what I did learn?
1. I need to roll and stretch every day. I have to make this a habit now so it will be automatic when training picks back up in June.
2. I have to eat well, hydrate well
Water, water, water and good clean food will do my body good.
3. Early starts and proper attire for summer running in Pasadena
Bye bye winter-hello summer! It will be tank tops and shorts and hats and glasses and probably bring some water too! I have to be very aware of what the weather is like.
4. Have my plan and stick to it
I need to stick to my running plan and make sure I can fit my miles in! It's just hard now because I'm in "maintenance mood" with no race on the horizon until Dumbo.
5. Keep the drinking to a minimum
I love to be social and have wine. However those things cause me to be so tired, lazy, and inactive. I need to monitor my drinking as it relates to my health and my runs to make sure I'm sticking to my running plan
6. I have to be healthy to prevent injury
I have so much motivation and energy to run now-which is great and new to me-but I need to slow down. I'm worried my random shin pain and general leg tightness could develop into shin splints and/or stress fractures. I have to make sure to listen to my body and not do too much, too fast.
Have you ever had a bad run? What did you learn from it?