GO CRAZY? DON'T MIND IF i DO!
After my failure of run on Wednesday and the consistent struggles I've had over the past couple weeks, I went to see the doctor today. I hit the nail on the head with my diagnosis guess for the right leg: a classic case of shin splints, the doctor was able to demonstrate pain as he pressed on different places on my shin.
On the left leg, things are a little more vague. There was nothing to indicate a sprained ankle or strained ligament, so the diagnosis of varicose veins stands for now, but the fact that I've had some weird tingling, tightness, or burning (makes it sound worse than it actually is) in the muscles in that area made him think that a nerve is getting caught up in some repetitive-motion injury. He suggested that rest should help this settle down as well. He can't tell if that's what's causing the pain in lower calf or if it's just related to overtraining, but rest, again, is the prescription.
On one hand, I'm a little relieved. I mostly haven't felt great since the marathon, and I'm sure if I I probably made things worse when I pushed myself so much at Celtic Solstice. In addtion to these lower-leg problems, my quads just feel really tired and weak on every run and a month or so off will be a good thing, even though I'll have to build my endurance back up. I would hope I could be ready to go for Broad Street (10 miles) in May, but since registration will open in February and be sold out in days, I probably don't want to pull the trigger on that since I'll just be starting again.
On the other hand, I really wish I could have hung in there till after Shamrock. However, I can't even reliably run 5 miles right now, there's no way that I could manage this through the 18, 19, and 20 milers ahead. With the disclaimer that the left-leg diagnosis is still kind of a guess, I also recognize that I'm getting off pretty easy in the world of running injuries.
Not running is going to drive me nuts, but I know it's probably for the best.