And I will run(/wallk/run) 100 more!
I crossed the 100 (cumulative) mile mark this week. That seems like such a huge milestone in some ways, and in others it seems like nothing at all. Over the last three months I feel like I’ve changed a bit. I feel more like my “old self” aka my pre-anxiety self than I have in years. That alone is amazing and makes me feel like this is really something I need to keep right on doing for the rest of my life.
One of the sillier changes I’ve noticed is a change in how I perceive distance. Three miles used to be far, at least to walk. Now it’s nothing to run/walk/run. It’s just a warm-up. Missoula seems smaller when I have my running shoes on.
This week I attended the Injury Prevention and the Missoula Marathon presentation put on by Run Wild Missoula and a local physical therapy clinic. The presenters gave us some great information about exercises and stretches we can do to minimize our risk of injury, and demonstrated good form for us.
I felt pleased that I’ve already been doing much of their recommended core work, at least at the beginner level. However, the running drills they showed us seem like something I need to start doing. I can feel that I have a weakness in my right leg, but I can’t tell if it’s at the knee or the hip.
During the portion of the presentation dedicated to stretching, my pace group leader brought up Galloway’s anti-stretching stance. The presenters weren’t exactly sure how to handle that, but they assured us that stretching is important. As they were physical therapists, it’s difficult for me to discount their opinions on the subject, and my own body is telling me that some stretching would really be a good idea.
I’m going to try to take a middle path when it comes to the stretching. Galloway’s objections to it seem to stem partly from the times when people stretch. Everybody knows not to stretch cold muscles, but Galloway also cautions about stretching too soon after a run. I’m probably mis-remembering this but I seem to remember that he said something about the muscles still being too activated & easy to tear or injure. So I am going to try to do gentle stretches of warmed-up muscles, but not right after a run, and see how that treats me. I’ll report back.
Another thing our class has been covering is nutrition during the run. Now, during the time when our runs are still fairly short, is the time to play around with our food and water intake to see what works for us. The Runners Edge carries some gluten free gummies and honey gels made by Honey Stinger. I tried the gummies on our 7.5 mile run and they were way too tasty. I think they’ll be great for a true long run, but they’re just too darned good to be using at this stage. It’s too hard not to gobble them all down. I plan to try one of the gels, mixed into water, on my next long run (10 miles). I don’t imagine it will be quite as irresistible.
Our 10 mile run is this coming Sunday and I’m really looking forward to it. My body seems to be adapting almost as well as my mind, to this new activity. Only 129 more days until the marathon, and I still feel like I can do it.