I am going to be very honest. Things have not improved over here. At first, after the marathon, I figured putting running on hold would be sufficient enough to heal all my aches and pains. I continued to bike, hike, walk, swim, strength train, and practice yoga.
My left hammie/back of my left knee has been a cause of concern for a while. The tendons feel strained. It started to become uncomfortable during marathon training, but of course with a big goal in sight, I pressed on. Right after the marathon, after I grabbed my gear and sat down I attempted to straighten my legs. My left knee fought back. It was very stiff. I applied some ice, but did not think much of it after that.
I continued to stretch the tendons beyond their limit. I was on the trainer the next day and I could feel the slight pain in the back of my left knee, but thought it was a normal, stiff feeling. All the walking and yoga classes were not helping. I really strained it one night in hot yoga.
In addition to a pulled hamstring, my left heel still has a lingering ache, I have bicep tendonitis in my left arm, and pain in my left shoulder blade. Pretty much, the left side of my body is out of commission. I first experienced bicep tendonitis towards the end of my senior year of high school as it was brought on from so much swimming.
While I can get through workouts, since the pain is not excruciating, I do not feel awesome or strong afterwards. I feel weak and it has just been delaying full recovery.
While I may be extremely frustrated, I am learning a lot from the forced time off. I have had a lot of time for self reflection. Although I crave running/biking/swimming/yogaing? I absolutely need to rest or the injuries will never heal. It has taken me a while to come to this realization. Maybe it’s because I am new to the sport, both running and triathlon, or I am just used to pushing through any pain I am feeling. Very dumb and amateur of me though.
I have tried to find a physical activity that will not impinge my recovery, but there really is nothing!
I was in denial that I was injured. None of these injuries are major. I thought I could keep pushing through the pain I was feeling. Because its not like the pain is unbearable. I can perform all the activities, but I can’t push as hard as I want. I don’t want to have a constant nagging pain all the time.
So now, as I rest, I know I am losing fitness. I am also losing my mind (maybe). This is scary. Who knows how long this could take. This is also scary.
Right now, I need to be patient and focus on other aspects of my life that have been neglected. This could be good for me.
With these injuries I have learned the limits of my body and to respect it and be grateful for what it can do. It is not indestructible. And when it is out of commission, it sucks. I need to start training and racing smart, and not go crazy with races and upping intensity and mileage too quickly.
Looking forward to 2015 I need to keep functional strength training a priority. My hips/glutes are weak and I believe this has been the root cause of some of my issues. I have been performing exercises to strengthen them, but will continue to do this. I also want to hire a coach. I believe this will be a key aspect to staying healthy and having a great season. Something that I did in 2014 that I will not do in 2015…have a bunch of races close together. These need to be spaced!
I am learning from my mistakes and will come back stronger. But for now, I’m just trying to exist in the “real world.”