Week 13 - unlucky for some! - and as I sit writing this with a hot water bottle nestled on my quad (more of this to come) I do feel a little bit like I have been struck by the curse. Especially as it was Week 13 of my London Marathon training last year that I also developed a shin trauma!
MONDAY: having completed my long run on Saturday and just a gentle recovery 5k on Sunday, I felt quite good today. I resisted the urge to do any additional more strenuous exercise though, sticking with the cross trainer before my Body Pump class.
TUESDAY: today's interval session saw the return of hills - 10 x long hill repeats over 7 miles. I chose the same route as I had ran a few weeks back, but I wish I could say it felt as good as my last venture. After the first incline I could feel my legs were considerably more tired, the power just was not the same. From here on it was a challenge, with my legs feeling heavier with each climb. A tough run, but I made it.
WEDNESDAY: with the heaviness from yesterday's run still very much in my legs I knew today's run would once again test me. 6 miles with 3 fast miles in the middle. I aimed for 8 minute mile pace for the middle section, and was marginally out at each split despite my best efforts. It hurt, my calves in particular felt like solid bricks, but again I was pleased to complete it. Body Pump class afterwards.
THURSDAY: after two tough runs I needed a good run today - and I got it! I ran 8 miles with my friend, keeping an average pace of 8.32 min/miles. My body did not protest too much at all, and most of all I enjoyed it!
FRIDAY: Rest Day
SATURDAY: I swapped my long run to Saturday this week, with 20 miles on the cards. Psychologically the fact this run was 2 miles shorter than last week's epic meant I approached it with less fear, as it just seemed that little bit more manageable! I ran with my friend and could not believe how quickly time elapsed and the miles ticked by. My legs were also feeling much better than on last weeks 22 miles - that was until I hit about the 15 mile point. A sudden sharp pain struck my left quad, like someone was poking their finger into a pinpoint spot and not letting go.
It was uncomfortable, especially on inclines, but did not make running impossible. On finishing our run I was so happy with the final stats, 8.49 min/miles and an overall time of 2 hrs 56 mins. I didn't want to rest on my euphoria though and knew I needed to address this quad. I grabbed the trusted frozen peas and iced the area. However, as I stood up after icing it was like my entire quad had ceased, and walking was very painful - I had made it worse! I was slightly worried at this point and opted quickly for the reverse treatment, massaging the area, foam rolling and having a hot shower. This helped return the muscle to its initial post run state, but it was still sore. I went to bed trying to ignore the niggle.
SUNDAY: overnight my leg had sadly not magically healed itself - damn! Thankfully, I was booked onto a foam rolling workshop with the Sports Therapist I use in the morning so I was able to seek her advice. The diagnosis - my TFL at the top of my quad had gone into spasm and was extremely solid and tight. The answer heat (which was why the ice did not help at all!) and foam rolling to try relieve the pressure and tension from the area. This reassured me slightly that there was no muscular tear to the area, but still was a little frustrating as to how it had just occurred. I opted to rest totally today rather than the slow 5k recovery run I had planned - it seemed not worth straining the area further for no real benefit. So not the best end to the week, but I hope something I can sort relatively quickly with just three weeks until race day!
Alice's Adventures In Running Land
Read about my adventures in running land...