29 May 2011

Trusting the Process

I got my hair done last week.  I love it!
One of the reasons why I love using Daily Mile to track my running is that I can see trends.  I can look back and read my comments as well as check my pace and distance.  This is helpful not only to track progress and gage what my marathon pace will likely be, but also in such instances as what happened to me in the last week or so.  I was really starting to feel sluggish- as if my legs were made of lead.  I was getting aches and pains in my hips and ankle even though I was tapering so my mileage was greatly reduced.  At first I kind of thought it was all in my head, or perhaps it was normal to feel that way once tapering began.  Then I started realizing how many miles I had actually ran in my shoes.  I was close to 370 miles for this training period, and the majority had been in my New Balance! 

The week prior when I drove up to Road Runner Sports up in Kent the salesman there was helping me select some sunglasses and I asked him how often minimal shoes should be replaced.  I was having a hard time finding this information online since the shoe I run in only hit the market in March.  I was thinking they would last longer than a typical running shoe, but he told me they actually need to be replaced more often- probably around 250 miles.  Hello Tiffany!  I needed to replace my shoes, and quickly so I could get a few miles in them before the marathon! 
Out with the old, in with the new!
So last Tuesday I drove out to Fleet Feet in Bonney Lake to get my new shoes since they are impossible to find in the Tacoma area.  In fact I called South Sound Running and they informed me they do not carry minimal shoes at all.  That place is a ridiculous excuse for a running store, I have been in there twice and never bought anything.  They don't even carry compression socks.  So I don't mind making the treck to Bonney Lake-  I LOVE that store.  The staff there is extremely helpful and their selection is always great.  I chatted with one of the ladies that works there for a bit and she gave me some nutrition advice for the marathon, I bought some Cliff shot blocks, the new edition of Northwest Runner and my awesome new shoes and was a happy customer. 
What a difference the shoes made!  I went for a 6 mile run in them the next day and my legs felt awesome and my pace was back where it should be.  Plus- no aches or pains!  Thank goodness I figured that out before the marathon, that would have been terrible!  I am not sure why it never occurred to me to replace my shoes, I always replaced my shoes during the half marathons I trained for.  So here is my advice to you all- pay attention to your body and if something seems a bit off...maybe you need to replace your shoes! 

I am not sure how I feel about tapering.  I realized that this is the first race I have trained for that I am actually able to finish the program.  Last year at this time I was babying my knee and missed several key long runs for the NODM half marathon.  I pretty much stopped all running for the last weeks leading up to the race to heal my knee.  Then last September for the You Go Girl I was having pain in my right quad so I also stopped my training early as well!  I know that being injury free right now has a lot to do with switching to a more minimal style shoe, focusing on my form as well as properly cross training.
Inside my shoe it says "less is more"  <=>  So True!
I did my last "long" run yesterday (8 miles) and it left me a little unsatisfied.  Although it was pretty warm and sunny out so at least I got a bit of a tan out of it!  I thought I would be happy for the reduced mileage but I am finding myself questioning whether I am ready for next weekend.  What if my training wasn't enough?  I guess my point is that the 8 mile run yesterday did nothing to reassure me that my body is ready to take on 26.2 miles.  I followed a marathon training plan that thousands of people use every year with success.  I followed it exactly, logging all the miles on the planned out days, except for that week my ankle was bothering me.  So I guess now I need to trust the process.  I am ready.  Right???   

Hanging out with my BFF on her bday!

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