Sooo I wouldn’t exactly say marathon training has been going *well*…
In my last update I talked about a bit of an emotional breakdown due to overextending myself with work. I thought a positive attitude had gotten me through that but turns out a smile doesn’t change the fact that I was simply doing more than my body (and mind) could handle. I was rundown and constantly tired with no signs of slowing–it was a breeding ground for injury.
Week 7 Recap
MONDAY | 10-Mile Run
This was the first training run I did along the marathon route. I took the green line out to Newton and then ran home. I actually live on the marathon route, right by the end of the course, so I quite literally ran home. It got me so excited for race day! And Heartbreak Hill isn’t too bad … when it comes at mile 4. 😉
I felt great during this run but it ended up being slower than my other two 10-mile runs because of the snow on the ground. Once I got onto Comm Ave it was clear, but the first two miles I was tip-toe prancing in 4 inches of disgusting snowy slush. I couldn’t really avoid it by getting off the sidewalks either because Washington St. is a major road. I would encounter this same problem every time I neared an intersection as well. That aside, I felt great, which is the most important thing in my book.
TUESDAY | Strength Training Double Session (Btone + BodyPump)
I would say this is when I started to notice something was a little off with my right knee. I didn’t think much of it though because it felt kinda like I just had a bruise on my knee cap: tender to the touch, hurt if I kneeled directly on it, but wasn’t affecting my range of motion and didn’t seem bothered by impact or movement. I figured I’d just bumped into something.
WEDNESDAY | Active Rest
I had a busy teaching day, which I think only aggravated my knee more. When you demo some exercises for the class, you mimic the megaformer on the floor by kneeling down and sort of dragging your lower body across the floor (this sounds totally bizarre if you’ve never taken a Lagree Fitness class, I know, haha). Every time I demoed wheelbarrow or cobra, my knee was NOT having it. Still, it didn’t seem to affect other activities so I wrote it off as a bruise.
THURSDAY | 3-Mile Run + Yoga (YogaWorks)
It’s a cool marker of how far I’ve come with the training that running three miles feels like NOTHING. It doesn’t even mentally register as a “real” workout (even though it most definitely is). Crazy! Knee felt fine during the run, but it yelled at me a few times throughout the Hip Hop Yoga class I took at YogaWorks that evening (any time I kneeled on it). When I walked home from yoga, it felt achey. Ok, starting to worry …
FRIDAY – SUNDAY | Injured
Yeah, yeah, my pinkie toes are weird. I’m aware, and I embrace them.
I taught four classes Friday morning and that was the last straw for my knee. When I got home, it started to stiffen and swell up, and by that evening, it looked like I was smuggling a softball under my skin. Because of the swelling I could barely bend it.
Normally, my reaction would be immediate despair and anxiety. But–as weird as this sounds–I honestly felt a little relieved by it. My body was telling me I needed to slow the hell down and I just looked at my throbbing, swollen knee and said a silent thank you to it. You’re right, I need to pump the breaks.
Rest, frequent icing, elevation–I cancelled all my active plans for the weekend and instead devoted myself to healing my knee. By the end of the weekend the swelling was pretty much gone and I could walk normally, but I still couldn’t bend it deeply (quad stretch = no way) or put pressure on it (kneeling = not happening).
Week 8 Recap
It was a no-brainer that I’d take the week off from running. The notion made me a little nervous–a natural reaction when you’ve committed yourself to training towards a goal with a set-in-stone date. But as I talked to more and more people, I felt reassured and even good about skipping a week of running.
I was told stories of people who’d done their entire training for the marathon on an elliptical to lessen the impact on a bum knee. Other people told me they only ran once a week for their long runs and then did other forms of low-impact cardio the rest of the week to avoid injury. People reminded me that overall physical fitness is a huge part and I’ve been committed to regularly working out for years. I can do this. A week off is good. Don’t push your knee or it’ll just end up worse.
MONDAY | Spin (Recycle) + Strength (Btone)
I was itching to workout after three days of barely being able to move. I took a spin class at Recycle, sitting in the back corner so that I could modify if needed. I knew the seated stuff would be fine but wasn’t sure how riding in third would feel. I was elated to find that I could do 90% off the class without my knee speaking up at all! Quick jumps from first to third were the only moves I had to skip.
After spin I walked across the street to take a Btone class, and while I had to modify all the kneeling positions, I know that machine like the back of my hand at this point so I was comfortable in knowing what moves to substitute. Again, I just went off to a corner machine so that I wouldn’t distract the class during the exercises I had to adjust.
TUESDAY | Spin (Recycle) + Yoga (YogaWorks)
Feeling excited after a double of classes the day before, I again went to a class at Recycle followed by yoga at YogaWorks. I modified some of the yoga flow to avoid kneeling on my right side, but otherwise was able to do everything pain-free. Yay!
WEDNESDAY | Quick Core Workout
In between teaching classes, I put myself through a 10-minute core workout on the megaformer. Self motivating on that torture device is no easy feat haha. Here’s a little video I posted to Instagram that shows part of what I did. In real life everything is done much slower and you stay on each movement for a minute.
THURSDAY | Spin (SoulCycle) + Yoga at Hotel Marlowe
SoulCycle had a Super Bowl Halftime Show class (Beyonce!!) conveniently following the two classes I was teaching at Btone that morning so I walked over to spin. Later in the day I checked into Hotel Marlowe for a blog project. As part of their Feel OMazing package, I got a private yoga lesson in my suite! I’ll be sharing all the details tomorrow or Tuesday.
FRIDAY | Strength (Btone)
I took the Btone class right before the night shift I was covering.
SATURDAY | Rest
SUNDAY (today) | Test Run, Literally
I AM SO HAPPY. I subbed a couple classes in the North End this morning and decided to run home afterwards to test out the ol’ knee (it’s been feeling 100% the past couple days). No irritation AT ALL! I felt so good I contemplated continuing and just doing the long run I have planned for tomorrow. But to be safe, I think it’s best not to jump the gun and see how it feels tomorrow. Discipline doesn’t always involve doing that which you don’t want to do; sometimes it’s equally important to hold back when you want to go all out. I ran an easy three miles today, spent a lot of time foam rolling and stretching, and iced my knee afterwards just to be safe.
WOOOO I’m back in action!
Have you had to train through an injury?
P.S. I honestly don’t even know who’s playing tonight, but go Beyonce!