Posts Tagged ‘Ankle’

For those of you who read my last post, in the comments you may have noticed that someone offered to put together a team for the Army Ten-Miler.  Since he is in the reserves, he gets to register two weeks before the general public.  What does that mean? I can’t “forget” to register in time.  I never realized that there are so many races in Washington, DC, which is a city I love.  I believe everyone has a city, one that fits them and is a reflection of their inner self.  So why is it DC for me?  It is a very different city than most large US metropolises.  Its layout and city planning are very open.  In 1910 a law was passed to limit the height of newly constructed buildings.  What this creates is a city that is open to the sky.  Add to that the Roman architecture, and you get a sense of the culture and history.  There are places like Rock Creek Park, which is like a piece of nature cutting deep into the heart of the city.  Numerous memorials and monuments litter the city, each with their own history and story.  I could go on and on about DC.  However, I will not.  I’ll save that for another post, perhaps.  For now, let’s get back to the Army Ten-Miler (ATM).

So a reader and contributor offered to put together a team.  Now we just need runners.  I have started the process to reach out and recruit for this team.  After reading up on the race, I learned that if you don’t cross the five mile marker by 9:45 AM they end your race.  At first I thought the race started at 9 AM.  That would mean you need to run a 9’00” pace.  Not bad, faster than me, but not bad.  Then it hit me; that only works if you are in the first wave.  There is no way I could make that!  I took a deep breath.  I had agreed to do it, so it meant I would just need to train harder.  Before I let panic mode set in, I decided to look up that race start time.  Turns out that it starts at 8:00 AM.  I can do that.  I’m ready for that run.  Now with that out of the way, on to my Easter run.

I woke up this morning and the Easter Bunny had given each of my kids, my wife and me each a basket full of treats.  Ah, the Easter Bunny, you deliver to me once of my vices, the jelly bean.  Or rather, a large quantity of jelly beans.  It is only fitting that I had planned to run ten miles on Easter.  It is the best way to burn off the calories that would surely be consumed in jelly bean form.  Did I mention that I love jelly beans?

These are my Jelly Belly jelly beans, and you ...

(Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I normally bring hydration with me for any run ten miles or longer.  I also bring with me a snack, PowerBar Energy Blasts.  Unfortunately, I am out of energy blasts.  Instead, I opened a pack of PowerBar Energy Bites.  Not quite the same thing, not even close.  They are too dry to eat while running, so they are only good for a pre-run bite.  Therefore, I have decided to sign up for a monthly delivery of Energy Blasts through Amazon.com to make sure this oversight doesn’t happen again.

This is also my first planned long run since my sprain.  It has been more than a few months since I needed my hydration bottles, and now they are missing.  I knew this would make for an interesting run.  On top of that, this run would be along the same path I took on the day I sprained my ankle. It sounds like a bad sequel, “Rural Run 2: This time, no hydration or snacks.”  If I had brought jelly beans as my snack, it would have seemed somehow wrong.  So off I went with nothing but the one small 6 ounce bottle of Gatorade I could find and an iPod.

When I left the house, I was already tired from two hours of walking around the zoo with the family this morning.  The first three miles of the run were rough.  Out the door I already had a headache, and my right knee, right shin, and left ankle were all screaming at me.  No matter the pain, I always give my run at least two miles to let the joints lube up and get the juices flowing.  By mile two, it still wasn’t feeling good.  I decided to give it another mile, just one more.  By mile three, no pain… only the road.  The run itself was uneventful until the run back.  On mile seven I encountered another runner – human this time.  She was ahead of me at one point.  Her pace was similar to mine.  I pushed to catch up in order to have a companion on the lonely road.  Sadly, she turned in a different direction than my intended route.  So then I was alone once again.  It had been good to see another runner.  I hadn’t felt so crazy to be out there in the middle of nowhere.

By mile eight I was approaching the place where I had sprained my ankle.  Not this time.  I watched each footfall to make sure they landed securely.  I noticed the size of the potholes in the area.  No wonder I had sprained my ankle!

As I said, the run was uneventful.  The most important part was that I completed it.  This is the longest run I have done since the sprain, with an OK pace of 11’20.”  Not the greatest, but good enough.  The true test will be tomorrow morning.  By then my ankle will tell me how good of a run it truly was.

Question:

What do you take on long runs?

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The Seven Stages of the Bench

Posted: January 18, 2012 by Roberts in Injuries
Tags: , ,

During the last six weeks, much has happened, and yet very little has happened. To bring you up to date, I have not run since my sprain. Today marks the fifth day in a row that I have been brace free. At the end of each day, the ankle is a just a little sore from walking. Since I have been unable to run, I feel myself slowly going mad. Since I have no reference point, I can only compare it to what I believe withdrawal would feel like. My days are riddled with sweating, runny nose, muscle aches, anxiety, insomnia, nausea, vomiting, cramping, goosebumps, and shivers. Ok, not so much…just in my own overly dramatic mind.

These past couple weeks I have noticed how addicted I am to running. That’s the first step to recovery, isn’t it? But I don’t want to recover from this addiction. I want to fall off the wagon and get back into it. When I will this ankle work again?

Not I am not an athlete by any stretch of the imagination; merely an enthusiast. The days are getting colder and I find myself thinking with each passing day how great my pace would be with the dropping temperature. It is aggravating, to say the least. After thinking about it, I am going through the seven stages of grief for my ankle.

Stage One – Denial: I actually asked the doctor two days after the spring, “I have a 5k this weekend, think I will be able to run it?”

Stage Two – Guilt: Many times I was caught saying, “I should have known better and paid more attention.”

Stage Three – Anger: Watching other runners over the following weeks got me jealous and irritated. A friend has started running, losing weight, and generally improving his health. I hate him for it, since I can’t!

Stage Four – Depression: I tried to add alternative exercise routines. It wasn’t the same. I felt like I was cheating on running. I became unmotivated and gained weight from overeating and not exercising.

Stage Five – The Upward Trend: I threw myself into work (thus the lack of posts). I put in longer hours and tried to find other ways to spend my energies.

Stage Six – Reconstruction: If I can’t run again, maybe I can take up cycling. It gets me outside, and it won’t stress the ankle if it never gets back to normal.

Stage Seven – Acceptance: NEVER!!!!!

My plan is to put in a run this Saturday if the ankle can handle it. The risk is great, the reward is immeasurable. How I have missed the outdoors and the pavement. My watch keeps asking me when we are going to run again. Very soon, watch…..very soon.

Keep on running.

If you have been following along, you know I am benched from running with a sprained ankle.  I can’t afford to get too lazy while I recuperate.  I have come too far to let it melt away.  The elliptical is now my litmus test of recovery.  If I get to a day after an elliptical session when my foot fails to remind me that it is sprained, then I can return to the road.  How I have missed you, cold and lonely road.  Going forward, I will use the elliptical every other day.  Today was no different. 

Looking back on my journey, the elliptical was the beginning, and now, injured, I return to it.  It seems my workouts have come full circle.  After logging over five hundred miles on the road, elliptical workouts represented constraint and boredom.  It was nowhere near as exhilarating as the cold bite of the open road.  Until my last injury, I had not touched it in a year.  Only a few weeks ago, my wife even asked if we could sell it.  I promised I would find a way to add it back into my routine.  It only took a face plant into pavement to keep that promise.  Now it offers freedom from the boredom of recovery.  It doesn’t stress my sprained ankle’s mobility since it is only a third of my stride. 

I try to keep myself entertained on the machine, but it is difficult.  I have rigged up a portable DVD player to the display.  I tend to watch TV shows since they last about 45 minutes.  It is about the right amount of time.  The show this time was Battlestar Gallactica.  I’ve seen it enough times already, though.  Are suggestions on other shows, I am open to anything? 

Looking around the room I could see the evolution of my routines.  The basement is filled with the story. First the elliptical, next on to the treadmill, and finally just my running shoes.  The least expensive and complicated is the best.  Maybe I should get an exercise bike?  How much exercise equipment do I need before my basement becomes a gym?  There isn’t space for one anyway….unless I move…NO…when would I have time to add another routine?

In addition to using the elliptical, I have decided to accept the Peacewolf Pushup Challenge.  If you follow us on Facebook, you may have seen the post about it.  The concept is to do a set of pushups and go until you can’t go anymore, and do this for thirty days.  The question is, how many more can you do on Day 1 verse Day 30?  Day 1 I started at 25.  It isn’t that impressive, but it is a start.  I don’t have a set goal of where to end up, just every day improve and see where it takes me.  By Day 30, I should be back on the road. 

Here’s to not having pain in my ankle tomorrow!