It's that time in the training season when things are starting to ramp up, and let me tell you, I am tired and I am feeling it. Care to hear about it? Thank you, I knew you would!
Quads: my muscles feel like two swollen pieces of meat that you expect to see hanging from a hook in some foreign meat market and you think "that can't be healthy, those look too...red?" I do my foam roller and curse out loud (silently when the girls are present) at the spot just over my knees. The other day I thought I'd survived quad soreness after my 15 mile run, but once I did my quads at the gym the next day, that was all she wrote. Maybe it's time to go lighter on that muscle group until after the marathon. Marathons.
Toe: right foot, the one next to my big toe. The toenail-less one. Lately it's been burning around the edges. Putting any pressure on it hurts. When my socks are too thick, my toe tells me. The only time I want socks covering it is for running.
Heels/Achilles: this is an old one that has returned. Very tight after prolonged periods of sitting or laying down. Then after a few minutes they stretch out and everything's fine.
Calves: general soreness.
Stretch more. Foam roll more. Sleep is becoming essential. Nutrition, in particular protein for muscle recovery. What else am I missing? Is this just me for the coming few months?
I'm not complaining, I'm simply inventorying my soreness. I've found it remarkable, especially when looking back later at my running logs, that I general I rarely experience new things while running. I might forget, for example, that XYZ hurt back in 2010, and then when I read an old race report or run entry, I'm like "oh yeaaaaaaah, how did I deal with it then?"
See, I'm convinced that as runners, we conveniently forget all the less-pleasant stuff each year as we say "yeah! I'll sign up for that (insert insane running distance here)!" It's that same way for mothers and childbirth. After the first one you forget, and then suddenly you're pregnant with kid #2, you're 8 months in and all of the sudden it hits you like "oh daaaaaamn. Somehow this baby inside of me has to come out", and all the mystique and glamour shrouded in a hint of mystery that was present before baby #1 is gone. Because you know it's going to hurt. Like a mother. I mean, it's not that bad (running pains) but it's that same "foggy, distant memory" that keeps us coming back for more.
Maybe someday when I'm 100% super super in shape it won't hurt as much? Although I suspect I'll be pushing myself to new levels, which of course, is not supposed to be easy.
And then I think about friends and acquaintances who are running ironman distances and shake my head at myself at all this for miles into the mid/upper teens. (The good angel whispering in my ear says: stop comparing!)
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