Life is like music; it must be composed by ear, feeling, and instinct, not by rule.

Friday, December 31, 2010

Friday, Dec. 31st . . . making peace with the treadmill

After a .5 mile barefoot warm-up on the treadmill, I put on the Evo and did a 6 mile run at 8:30 pace. It was -8F this morning and while I've run in temperatures that cold before, I don't have much interest in doing it any longer so I made peace with the treadmill and accepted that it will be part of my running routine this winter. I put on a good movie and had a good run.

I had almost no pain in my right foot so it's almost completely healed. The past 4 days has actually been a great reminder for me about how much I love running but also a reminder about the delicate balance required to pretty much run injury free. I've been injury free for over 1 year because I've been disciplined with my feet strengthening and maintaining a good mix of easy and hard running.

However, for the past 3 weeks, I got a bit lazy and didn't continue all my feet exercises and I started to turn my Sunday long run into a tempo run and instead of running a good comfortable pace (7:30 - 8:15), I started running it between 6:15 - 6:45 which was plain stupid. I already have 2 runs per week where I run at paces ranging from 5:30 - 6:30 so it was stupid to add such paces to my long run, not to mention my body, and specifically my feet were not prepared for it.

Since I run close to barefoot (in Evo's), I must be very careful and conservative when I add pace, distance and/or intensity as I can overload the tendons and muscles in my feet (actually this applies to any runner, shod or unshod). Thank god I've spent the time over the past year learning and understanding my body so that I could reduce my pace work for a few days and quickly recovery without having to take an extended break and most importantly, I was able to avoid the dreaded plantar fasciitis injury.

I'll spend the next few weeks running nice and easy to make sure I'm 100% before adding back the heavy pace work.


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