Happy Saturday morning from Philadelphia! The forecast for this weekend is looking perfect – especially if you are racing a 10-miler tomorrow.
Of which I am not.
I have finally made the executive decision to not run Broad Street (i.e., my most favorite race of the year). And it sucks.
So here’s the deal. I’ve had a pretty great spring training-wise, have completed some fun speed workouts, long runs, and PR’d at Cherry Blossom last month. Two weeks ago, I went on an excellent 10-mile bridge run, which was to be my last “longer run” before Broad Street. I felt great during the run, but that evening I began experiencing some dull pain in my pelvis.
Which then became a dull pain in my groin (definitely groin pull), which was accompanied by sporadic sharp pains in my pelvis and lower back, along with extremely tight glutes and hamstrings. Yay!
In denial, I was hoping this was just a pulled muscle situation that I could simply warm up, massage out, ice a bunch, medicate, and move on. After a few days on the elliptical, last Saturday I forced my determined self on the treadmill. The first 5 minutes sucked, but I eventually warmed up and mustered through 6 miles in minimal pain. Suddenly, a wincing pain shot up through my pelvis, which nearly stopped me in my tracks as I almost flew off. Pissed, (and worried) I hobbled off the treadmill and limped home.
At this point, I was still naive and hopeful that I could run Broad Street which was still a full week away. I started an ibuprofen regimen to keep any swelling down and was icing 4 times a day. On Monday, I got a sports massage at Phila Massages, where Natacha focused on my groin and glutes (sorry Natacha…), and also did a lot of stretching of my hip flexors and crazy maneuvering of my hips. I stuck to the elliptical all week, or took Manny on brisk walks. But, no running. Also, I didn’t bike commute this week, afraid that the pushing down on my pedal was also affecting the groin.
Finally, last night, I was feeling okay. At the gym, I warmed up for 30 minutes on the elliptical, and gazed longingly at the treadmill. (Did I just say “gazed longingly at the treadmill?” oh, the irony!) So I cautiously hopped on, and started with a slow 10-min/mile pace. Felt okay. Slowly increased to 8:30’s. Still felt okay…. when suddenly, at about 6 minutes in, wincing pain through my pelvis. Defeated and humbled, I hobbled home again. (Which was subsequently followed by 2 - 3 glasses of rosé).
Um, obviously, I can’t run Broad Street. I can’t even run for 6 minutes! What was I thinking? One of two scenarios would happen if I attempted to start: (1) I would start at an annoyingly slow pace, and drop out at about 5 minutes in, somewhere in No. Philly or (2) I would somehow finish, definitely NOT anywhere close to a PR, and hurt myself even more resulting in a longer recovery. It’s a no brainer.
During my rosé-induced pity party last night, Joe finally says to me, “Get over it! It’s just Broad Street!” Ha. Why is he always right? This is the first race I've ever registered for that I decided not to follow through on, which felt really dissapointing. Although I love that race, it’s so not a big a deal in the ol’ grand scheme. The most important race to me this year is obviously the NYC Marathon in November. There is no question.
So, I had planned on taking a 2 month training break after Broad Street, before NYC training begins sometime in July. It looks like that break is coming a little earlier than originally scheduled.
This week has given me a lot of opportunity to consider the year ahead. Like I said, there is no question: I am running the NYC Marathon. But I feel like my body is wearing down and discovering my “weak links”, which is resulting in injury. So, I know I have some work to do over the next 6 months. I want to be stronger, flexible, and just more durable and resilient. So I’m hoping to find a training plan to incorporate all of these goals so I prepare the best I can to meet some bold goals injury-free. Because being injured is bullsh*t and annoying.
I am still not sure what exactly my injury is. In the 18ish years I have been running, I have had experienced a multitude of pseudo-injuries on some level or another. But, I can’t quite pinpoint this one. One second I am sure it is an aggressive groin pull. But other times, I am worried it is some sort of bone alignment issue with my pelvis or hips. And I am trying to put out the chance that a pelvic stress fracture is the culprit of the “wincing pain”. I’m gonna give it a week to see how it improves, at which point I’ll decide whether to visit the doc. (I’d like to avoid a hefty MRI co-pay that simply results in someone telling me to RICE – which I already know.)
On the bright side, if you need to pick a certain day to admit that you’re injured, it might as well be Cinco de Mayo! To all those running Broad Street, iBuena Suerte! Run a little harder out there for me! And Have fun! I’ll be cheering at Spruce & Broad!