Tuesday, July 10, 2007

The Little Engine that could

Chugga, chugga, chugga ... chugga, chugga, chugga .... this Little Engine (although porky pig may be a better mental image) rolled out of the house this morning bright and early for the first "real" run in 3 weeks. My back is feeling much better. It's stiff, but doesn't hurt anymore. Not wanting to tempt the Fates and hurt something else, I decided on a very conservative 1/2 mile walk - 1/2 mile run strategy along a 4 mile loop. The advantage of the big loop, of course, is that I can't quit once I get started.
 
It was with some trepidation that I started a slooooooooow jog after the first 1/2 mile warm up walk. Everything held together. No pain my back, hips or knees and only a slight discomfort in my gut. I didn't wear my watch since there wasn't any need to time this run, but I probably averaged 9:40/mi on the jogs and 18/mi on the walks. I made sure to throttle down at the end of each 1/2 mile and not over due it this morning.
 
Thanks again for all your suggestions ... I actually took many of your suggestions to heart and incorporated them into my recovery:
 
1) Take it slow ... couldn't go much slower or I'd stop all together. I'm following the Pfitz Marathon Recovery program right now to ensure I'm back up to to the 35-45 MPW range before I need to start serious training for Carlsbad in late August.
2) Get more flexible, take up Yoga ... over the howls from my 19 year-old daughter that I've gone totally "gay", I bought a book on basic yoga. I have to read up on anything new I try (it's a curse) ... but I'll stick with it and will get more limber
3) Have my gut checked out ... already did this. I don't have a hernia or other serious abdominal problems, I seem to have a muscle problem that won't go away. I did isolate the problem to the lower abdomen where the lower part of the abdominal muscles attach to the pelvis. I can't do any exercise that causes a rapid contraction of the lower abdominal muscles. The Leg Press Machines are a killer right now.
4) Cross-Train on my off days ... I've getting reacquainted with my gym. I started weight training for my problem areas (quads and abdomen in particular). When I can scrape together a little extra cash, I'll get my mountain bike fixed and hit the trails again. My gym also has a pool, but I don't know if I'm ready to commit to swimming. I still haven't figured out how I'm going to fit in Yoga and Weight Training into my already full schedule, but many of you seem to get the job done, so there is hope.
 
Thanks again for sticking with me through this. I know I've been a real pain in the ass. Take care.

18 comments:

J~Mom said...

I love the image of you 19 year old howling...at any age our kids torture us. :>)

Phil we are all rooting for you, you are not a pain at all! Your plan for recovery and continued success sounds great.

Laurie said...

J mom is right, we are here for you, we don't think you are a pain in the ass. You just have one ;)

I'm glad you're taking it slow and easing back into things. Take care.

Dusty said...

Good job taking it easy - that is the only way you'll get better. Have you tried a chiropractor? Ones that do the Palmer method or use an activator are gentle and it doesn't hurt at all.

Hang in there!

DawnB said...

wow Phil I was coming back here to comment on your previous post. What a difference a day makes!!! I'l glad you took it slow and easy today, I'm not sure about that 9:40 pace being slow and easy though!!!

Nicole said...

Glad you are doing better. A don't let your daughter's laughter prevent you from stretching - even though I would probably do the same thing if my dad started to do yoga.

stephruns said...

the pain and the physical exhaustion comes along with our "hobby", as I'm just learning myself!!! Every time it beats me down I appreciate my good times when I run even more. what helped me finding time and joy to weight train was the fact that it would help me being a better runner.

Ewen said...

Good to see you getting back into it Phil. Ask your daughter to take a photo of you doing the splits as part of your warm-up routine before the next marathon ;)

miss petite america said...

glad to hear you're up and running again!

and tell your daughter lots of normal guys do yoga. my class is full of 'em. if only to check out the girls . but still...they prolly get pretty limber in the process.

Thomas said...

In Ireland, men's Yoga participation shot up by a huge amount about 4 years ago when the country's most famous footballer, Roy Keane, said in an interview that he does Yoga, and credited it with extending his career.

And believe me, nobody ever told him he was gay and lived to tell the tale. The guy was a thug of the highest order during his playing days.

ReneeMc said...

Nice plan to get yourself back to feeling 100%! Personally, I need to get back to yoga myself. I think I'll go totally gay with you.
I keep telling myself I can just stretch, but really, I can't. It's too straight!

Mike said...

I'm glad you're not rushing things here, and I'm also happy to see the adbominal issue isn't a hernia. As always, it's how we handle adversity that really defines us, rather than how we deal with the occasional bouts of success that come come along. Keep the chin up and the walking will be history before you know it.

Jamie said...

Awesome things are returning to normal. Best wishes in that they continue to do so. Just makes us appreciate running and being healthy more, and you'll be back soon enough.

Deene said...

i'm glad you're taking care of yourself and not trying to run thru the pain.
isn't the 19 yr old kid also the one that gives you the finger at photo ops? i recommend you return the salute.

Gotta Run said...

Thanks for the super sweet email!!!

By adding Yoga you should see some benefits soon. I am holding out for the same hope. My husband and oldest son just laughed when I did my cd the other night. That has never stopped me before... :)

Great update on the back. Still cheering you on.

Josh said...

glad to hear you well on the road to recovery. And that you're taking the advice.

As for xtraining, you'll find that you can work out more frequently and harder because you're working different muscle groups - particularly with swimming. And you're gaining good core strength and cardio-fitness all of which will help with your running.

Lana said...

Glad you're back on the road again!! And I am cracking up about your daughter's comments on the yoga! LOL

Anne said...

Ah-oh. If your daughter thinks yoga's gay, then I best not mention that Pilates is especially good for strengthening the back. I do hope the recovery continues for you. Three weeks can seem like an eternity with someone as active as you are.

Chad in the Arizona Desert said...

Be careful, all that cross training when you are a hurt runner is how triathlon got started in the first place. If you do it too long you might just end up over with us on the Dark Side. ;-)

Glad to hear you are back on your feet. Bad backs suck!