Sunday, August 28, 2011

"I am a marathon runner. I can not stop running."

Funds collected to date: $2465.80 (94%)
Amount needed to reach pledge: $154.20
Long run: None due to injury :(
Weeks to Go: 10

This past week was, I am sad to report, not good on the running front. Things started last Sunday with foot pain (remnants, I believe, from last week's 16-miler). The pain wasn't horrible, so I went running on Tuesday after taking two full days to rest. That run turned out to be a bad idea, as it basically made me a cripple, out of commission for the remainder of the week.

Being injured while training for the marathon is whack. It's whack because basically I have become this crazy brainwashed running zombie crack-head who needs to run. I did an hour on the elliptical machine and literally was like "meh." Messed up.

The treatment for most running injuries -- from what I have been told and what I have researched -- is RICE. This does not mean eat copious amounts of basmati, but rather it stands for Rest Ice Compression Elevation.

I'm doing my best to comply, but it is very difficult / awkward to do this during the day at work.

I have also eliminated flip flops from my footwear (as they are basically the worst thing you can walk around in, turns out).
So I have purchased not one, but two pairs of the coolest freaking shoes you have ever seen from the fashion-forward retailer Easy Spirit. The other clientele in the store were minimum four decades older than me and they approved of my sensible footwear. I think even the woman ringing up my order was embarrassed for me.

I did a little bit of research on "The Google" regarding running injuries, and the first result that came up -- an archived NYTimes article from 2007 -- did little to assuage my fears. The article begins as such: "Worried about dropping dead if you run a marathon? Researchers in Canada say you can put your mind at ease." Well, I wasn't before, but now that you mention it, New York Times...damn!

So let's delve further, shall we? I'm evidently not supposed to be too worried about the actual dying itself, but what about this ankle? And other potential issues? A site called has compiled some injury rates and statistics. Let's take a look at the first gem:

Epidemiological studies estimate between 19.4% and 79.3% of runners sustain an overuse injury in a one year period.

Wow. Thanks for narrowing that band of likelihood for me. 19.4 to 79.3. You're really willing to take a stand here on the statistics, huh?

As you know, I enjoy charts and visual aids. Here is one:
So allegedly I fall into the 17% for Foot/Ankle. Fine. Useless information, but fine.

....and that pretty much exhausts the internet other than medical websites staying "STOP RUNNING" and message boards on running websites with everyone giving their useless opinions. It's a no man's land out there. A mele of words and uselessness.

So, my week has been kind of a downer. Luckily a "hurricane" (putting it in quotes since it was the lamest hurricane ever) came through making it basically mandatory that I sit on my ass and do nothing.

This afternoon I was able to get out there and do a slow run in Central Park.
A view of the lovely and almost over-flowing Central Park reservoir.

I think the run went okay, but I'm going to rice the crap out of my legs the rest of the day. Because Team For Kids has a pretty aggressive schedule, I have done a 16-miler before others that are training for the marathon and I am in decent shape. But I'm surprised at how "out of shape" from a running perspective I feel after a week on the couch. And in the bar. And eating nachos. I have, however, caught up on my Keeping Up With The Kardashians viewing, so I guess there's always a silver lining in everything.

Also, Sam shared this video with me which is a must-view for any distance runner or anyone who has had to deal with a distance runner. It is completely accurate and amazing. An excerpt:

Runner: "It is an over-use injury."
Non-Runner: "What does that mean?"
Runner: "It is caused by running too much."
Non-Runner: "But it is 5 am. And you are going for a run."
R: "I am a marathon runner. I must run."
N: "But you are injured."
R: "I must run."
N: "You are an idiot."
R: "If I do not run I will get fat. And lazy. I will lose all my fitness."
N: "You will get better."
R: "I am a marathon runner. I must run."
N: "Will your injury get better if you continue to run?"
R: "It is unlikely. It may get worse."

Good lord, this is totally what we sound like. And -- yes -- I am aware that I am an idiot.

But you love me anyways. I am a marathon runner. I must run.

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