No one said it’d be easy

Life, ya’ll. It gets in the way. Of lots of things, of most things.

Namely, blogging. Secondly, running.

So let’s focus on the running thing. I see the last time I made a meager appearance here was a few days before my last marathon. I guess it’s only fitting I make my return a few (9!!) days before my NEXT marathon. I guess I never talked about how that whole thing went, but sometimes (all the time) there’s so much overload in my brain that I want to say about a topic that I panic and say nothing instead. Or too much. In this case… well, obviously, nothing. To make a very, very long story short: it went well, all things (bad weather, bad fueling, bad attitude) considered. A 12+ minute PR. But I trained like a monster for that thing. I ticked nearly every run off my training schedule like it was my job (sadly, it isn’t my job). Usually I don’t even MAKE a training schedule, so, this was a pretty big deal in my book (and this is my book, so it’s a big deal).

Fast forward, oh, about 4 months, to now. Shockingly, I’ve spent the past few months in a self-imposed pile of wallowing that can only be induced by me doing what I do best – getting hurt and not being able to run painlessly. This time it was a long bout of IT band issues, which I slowly remedied with physical therapy. It took a bit of time, and it annoyed the hell out of me, but it was finally(!!) getting better. In August, I ran the Madison Mini Marathon (why don’t they just call these damn things what they are – a half marathon), and my goal was to hopefully not be in excruciating pain. As my last run over 6 or so miles was in June at my last half, I was hoping this was a reasonable goal. Lo and behold, it was, and actually ended up being my 3rd fastest half. (though I have reason to believe the course was short. Count it!)

So this was all well and good and promising, except I started to feel a little bit of tendinitis creeping up in my interior ankle. And I thought, oh yes, I’ve felt this pain before. I know the depths of torment it can bring. I was determined to not ignore it, like I did last year, when I kept running until I made it unbearable to the point of not being able to train for the Lakefront Marathon (which I actually wrote about here and here). So I took a mini-break. I felt it subside. I continued on.

I started to add longer-ish runs back into my routine. Each time it was a little dance with the devil, like is this going to end in pain? Each time I squeaked out alive. Tiny little baby twinges on the inside of my ankle. Fine. 10 miles. 19 miles.

So on Tuesday, I figured, hey, I’ll run like 14ish miles. Because even though I know you’re not supposed to play catch up when you’re training for a marathon, sometimes (all the times), I just literally cannot stop myself. So off I waddled (after making the mistake of putting off this run until the day after leg day. So… that definitely helped nothing at all), slowly but surely. It was a struggle, marked by the whole inability to get my legs to move after the day before in the gym. But that’s the kind of suffering I can endure. At the end of the run (which unexpectedly came out to 15.5 miles total) the outside of my ankle hurt. Because I apparently am incapable of catching a break.

So, I may be exaggerating the pain in my head, but I really don’t feel like taking chances on it either. I’m pacing the Brewers Mini Marathon on Saturday (holla at yo girl if you wanna run a flawless 2:15!), and Lakefront is the weekend after, so I’m crossing all my appendages that it’ll all work out in the end. I think a lot of the issues may boil down to shoe choices, but the problem is I’m not sure which shoe choice to make. I thought I was pretty sold on wearing the Mizuno Wave Sayonara 1 (old school) to both pace the half, and for Lakefront, but after wearing it on Tuesday and getting the weird niggling ankle pain, I’m basically questioning all my life decisions.

I guess time will tell? No one said it’d be easy, but I’m sure as hell going to make it worth it.