Depression Marathon Blog

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Diagnosed with depression 18 years ago, I lost the life I once knew, but in the process re-created a better me. I am alive and functional today because of my dog, my treatment team, my sobriety, and my willingness to re-create myself within the confines of this illness. I hate the illness, but I'm grateful for the person I've become and the opportunities I've seized because of it. I hope writing a depression blog will reduce stigma and improve the understanding and treatment of people with mental illness. All original content copyright to me: etta. Enjoy your visit!

Thursday, December 20, 2018

Running update

I celebrated another birthday this week. My goal for my 51st year is to actually run a race again. I ran my last race the day before I turned 49. So it's now officially been more than two years since I last raced. Two years! I can't believe it. It's been a long, long time, and I'm not sure an end to the drought is in sight.

With that in mind, I ventured out on my second run this week. I've run 2 to 5 miles, 2 or 3 times per week for the last 6 weeks. My Achilles tendons, both of them, have been sore, so 3 weeks ago I began running in a new shoe, the Nike Vaporfly 4%, in hopes I might avoid further injury. The Vaporfly 4% shoes are the super high tech running shoes which were created for the Nike Breaking 2 project.

The new shoes were ridiculously expensive, but they really are super-cushioned and energy-returning, just as advertised. Almost immediately I was running faster with the same or less effort. It's not that I'm focused on speed right now, but running the same pace with less energy expenditure feels great. Unfortunately, my Achilles soreness has not abated.

As I sit here right now I fear I will not get a chance for a third run this week, as both of my Achilles tendons are hurting. So while I'm thrilled with my run today, a very comfortable and easy 5.6 miles, I'm frustrated beyond belief with this chronic Achilles soreness. My legs and my lungs are clearly ready to increase training volume, but I dare not. The last thing I need is another Achilles tear.

I'm doing everything I can to avoid further injury. I'm running less and advancing mileage slowly. I've got the new, high tech shoes. I'm foam rolling my calves after every run and often on the days in between, too. I'm using heat and/or ice on an almost daily basis. I'm strengthening my calves, and I'm stretching, even though I already have excellent ankle range of motion. I don't know what else I can do. I can't figure it out. There seems to be nothing left to fix.

My plan, therefore, is to continue forward slowly. I'll keep doing what I'm doing, take days off as needed, and pray for the best possible outcome. I'm longing to be the runner I used to be. I'm yearning to feel the grace and freedom, in my body and soul, of floating along effortlessly, enjoying a beautiful day, with Jet running by my side. It's been a long time since I've experienced that. I know it's possible. I just have to get there. Somehow I will. I have to believe that.

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