Last week the doctor told me to stick to cross training for 2 weeks (totaling my no-running to 4 weeks) and I decide to fully embrace the fact that I have no reason to be running right now and declared November “Recovery Month.” Friday was a frustrating day, I was in a lot of pain and feeling like my foot would never get better. But I have been staying persistent with the massage and foam rolling and, as of yesterday, am starting to feel some improvement so I am hoping this is truly healing and not just a phase.
I am not a person that can run 6 days a week. Four is my maximum and I often only opt for 3 days, but I rarely cross train. I decided that this would be a great time for me to get into the habit of cross training and see what I like and what I don’t like. Admittedly, it is much easier for me to get myself to the gym now that the days are shorter and colder because I don’t feel like being outside in the dark all the time. This past Thursday I headed to the gym and got on the bike for 30 minutes. We don’t have cable at home and all of the cardio equipment at the gym has individual TV’s, so I reward myself by allowing myself to indulge in whatever trashy show is on. That morning it was Couples Therapy Reunion or something like that on VH1. Sunday morning I headed to the gym and put in 60 minutes on the bike, enjoying HGTV the entire time. This morning I decided to switch it up and did 15 minutes on the lateral machine. That was actually pretty awesome and something I think I will start incorporating into my cross training, it kept me fairly entertained and I didn’t even put the TV on. It also got my heart rate up pretty well. I finished out with 10 minutes on the bike. Tomorrow I will head in and do some weights before my rest day on Wednesday.
I am sure I am losing a bit of fitness, but in December I can start working on my running base a gain. I currently have myself scheduled for cardio 4 days a week with an additional day of weight training. After week one I can honestly say I am enjoying it. It’s nice to not have the pressure of a training schedule (though I do have workouts scheduled out, that’s just how I am) and I have been allowing myself to keep my heart rate a little lower during my cardio. Mostly, I just want my foot to heal up so I can go back to enjoying running as an activity and not a chore.
I’m also doing a little reading. My BRF, Courtney, has had some issues this season too and had to drop from her fall race. As soon as she got injured she pre-ordered Dr. Kelly Starrett’s Ready to Run. She handed it off to me on Saturday and so far I am hooked. Though I don’t see myself switching to minimalist shoes anytime soon, I am in the mindset that orthotics or a different pair of stability shoes isn’t going to fix my problem. My chiropractor has been great so far with helping me to fix the mechanical issues I have and I am looking forward to beginning to incorporate some of the exercises in this book into my daily routine.
Speaking of Courtney – Saturday I joined her in the bridal district of Reading, Ohio, for her wedding dress shopping. I headed to her house around 7am and her, Michelle, and myself headed out to meet up with her mother and sister. After trying on a few it all came together and she ended up saying yes to the dress! It didn’t take her that long to choose, so then her sister and Michelle began perusing the bridesmaids dresses. Courtney nonchalantly turned to me and asked me if I wanted to be one of her bridesmaids. Umm, DUUUUH. Courtney has been one of the most supportive friends I have met here in Ohio and I am looking forward to logging many more miles on the trail with her this winter and standing by her side during her wedding next summer. I’m probably more excited to be a bridesmaid than what would be considered normal. This also may be because my husband and I did not have to attend any weddings in 2014, so we’ve had a nice break from the previous 3 years of wedding festivities.
After some impromptu bridesmaids dress try-ons, we headed out for a delicious brunch. Most of the meal was spent chatting about different books and it was a nerdy good time. We finally got back to Columbus around 5:30 p.m. It was a long, but fun day. I am pretty excited to work with the other bridesmaids to plan some fun wedding stuff for Courtney.
So that’s where I am right now. Enjoying cross training and time with friends. I am honestly perplexed by those that go from one race to training for another without time off in between. In the past I have taken time off from training, but continued to run while focusing the bulk of my mind and energy on other things. I think it’s an absolute necessity to take a step back from training at least once a year. Looking ahead, I am ridiculously excited about the holidays this year and am really looking forward to some quality time with both my family and my husband’s parents.