Sunday, December 2, 2012

Fifteen Weeks

On September 22, I stopped running.  It had been a tough September, with lots of pain in my left ankle and shins.  Two weeks earlier, I'd had to stop a run when the pain in my left leg just became too much.  I'd come back with a decent five miles and thought nothing of it, but after running my last race, the Sasquatch 5K (my wife reviewed it at "Never Trade", but I never bothered), it just been bonk after bonk after bonk. On September 22, I went down to the rail trail, knowing that if I was going to have any shot at all at the Atlantic City Half Marathon, which I was going to run with no expectation of PR, anyway, I had to have a good run.  I labored through 5 miles, getting only that far because I had to in order to get back to my car.

I called my orthopedist, I deferred from the race, and most significantly, I just quit. In January, when I couldn't run, I did everything I could to stay in shape and I got right back out there and made some quick progress in my spring races.  This time, I gave into my depression and did I ate and drank a lot and did a lot of sofa exercises (like sitting on a sofa.)  In early November, when my doctor got my MRI results back (diagnosis is shinsplits, or something similar, since the placement on the leg isn't the classic case of shinsplits) and said I could start running again, I took that as "Wow. I need a couple weeks at the gym to get myself back in shape a little."  And I tried, but in the meantime I'd gotten heavier than I'd ever been. 

I started doing the elliptical at the gym, doing 45 minutes with different inclines to work different muscles, but we all know that's not the same.  When I joined my wife for a session with her personal trainer on Monday, which I'm signed on for for the next 10 weeks, I got the rude awakening of out-of-shape I'd let myself get.

My long-overdue Day of Reckoning had come at last, and I ran again.  Two miles on Thursday and three miles today, which felt like 10 and 20 miles, respectively, but it was good to be out there again.  I have 15 weeks to get ready for my third -- and let's face it, quite possibly last -- marathon, and from here on out I'm going give it everything I've got, even if it's probably too late.  I know if I can get myself up to 6-7 miles by the end of December, I'll be at the place in which my 2011 Shamrock plan began (I was ahead of schedule then!).  I can't let fatigue, work stress, or fear of failure stop me.  If I CAN run, I have to do it.  There's just not time to slack off.  I'll need to work harder than I've worked before at running, and I suspect that the next three months will my make IT band rehab look like a walk in the park.

There's a chance.  Probably not a good chance.  But there's a still a chance a chance for the revenge I've sought all year.  And I'm going to take it. 


  1. You've got this! The hardest part (starting again) is over--now you just need to get back into the rhythm of training. Looking forward to following your progress.

  2. There he is! Welcome back! Hope you stay and feel healthy through the holidays!