Saturday, January 29, 2011

Lessons Learned from Injury

Last time I ran was January 2, 2011.  Running those 7 miles was THE best way to start the new year.  It was the longest distance I've done.  So far.  It felt so good.  A half-marathon didn't seem so far out of reach.  I felt empowered....until my right leg started to bother me.  A lot.

The Iliotibial band (ITB) is this long, wide stretch of muscle on the outside of your thigh.  It becomes painful and inflamed when it stretches and rubs against your femur (Iliotibial Band Syndrome or ITBS).  This could be caused by many things from lack of stretching, incorrect shoes, worn shoes, too much downhill running, or over-training.

In my case, I ran too far too soon AND my shoes were so worn out I should not have run in them that day.  Ugh.  Lessons learned from all this?  First one, stick to a training plan - those training plans were designed for a reason - to reduce the risks of injuries as you increase your mileage/speed.  Second, never let your running shoes expire.  Log in the miles you put in them so that you can order/buy the next pair in time before your old pair wears out.  Otherwise?  You will end up waiting - like me - for the new shoes to arrive (it didn't help too that the new line of shoes were coming so the running store near me did not have enough sizes in stock!).

In the end, the wait is good.  Need to be off my feet anyway to heal.  But it is killing me to not be able to run.  I get so jealous when I see a runner outside.  But first thing first.  Need to focus on healing and treating my ITB.  Ah, lessons learned, indeed.  For next time.

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