I have been on a forced running break for almost 2 weeks because of my calf issue. To be honest, I have been pretty cranky about it. My mood has been low, I feel sluggish and just blah. It’s one thing when you CHOOSE to take a break. It’s another when your body just physically cannot run. Oh – I tried. On Saturday, I drove out to watch some of my teammates run in the VA Wine Country ½ Marathon. I was signed up to race this as well but obviously had to take a DNS. I planned to run 2-3 miles while my teammates were racing. My calf felt about 80% better so why not? I made it 100 meters and felt a lot of pulling and uncomfy tightness in my calf muscle. I stopped immediately. (Disclosure: I did not clear this with anyone and in turn, got stern looks and the same reaction from both my coach and Physical Therapist (PT): “So, why did you do that?!?”) I was so hopeful it was going to feel great so that I could start running again. Another week in the pool…
Don’t get me wrong, I am so thankful I have the pool, but my face has kind of resembled this during the last couple of pool runs:
|Scrunchy-faced pool runner.|
I have enjoyed catching up with Cheryl and being able to chat with some of CAR’s faster runners that I normally wouldn’t be running with, but again, I am anxious to get back out there. Even though I feel good finishing a nice long pool run, it is nothing like finishing a nice, long, sweaty run on one of the DC trails. I miss it like crazy and it doesn’t help that the weather has been near perfect the past 10 days.
As I mentioned above, I started seeing a PT for my hamstring/glute issue the week before I hurt my calf. Lucky, I suppose because now he can help me with both issues. The PT is going really well, especially with my hamstring. If there is one thing I can do well, it is be OCD about the exercises he assigns me to do and I see improvement already. For instance, when he first had me doing single leg bridge exercises, my hamstring kept cramping. I could not even make it up to 10 reps. That was because I was using my hamstring to do all the work and not engaging my butt. I have been working on that and again can easily do 20 reps with no problem.
Also, we have been basically just monitoring my calf and letting it heal. There has been a lot of foam rolling and massage. We started with some band exercises and moved on to standing calf lifts. They felt great today. The good news is that he gave me the OK to try 2-3 miles tomorrow with another stern warning that if I feel anything tweaky to stop immediately. Go slow. No speed. Flat surface. Wear compression socks. That is a deal! Wooohooo! I NEVER want to feel that pop again. I will be cautious.
I may only make it a lap or a mile but that is fine with me. That is one more lap than I am doing today and that makes me happy. Forward progress is a beautiful thing.