After battling with injury for the past few years I have officially been injury free for 6 months now.
Don’t get me wrong, I still have runs that suck and runs with little knots and cramps and pains here and there, but that constant painful injury is gone.
At first it was all about playing it smart, taking it easy and seeing what my body could handle.
Then, it was about easing back into running and racing without reinjuring myself, so every hard day was followed by an easy day – my body got lots of time to recover.
Now, I am slowly testing my limits. Sometimes, I’ll do two or three hard days in a row before I give myself an easy day or a rest day. I am working on being smarter and listening to my body and when it tells me no, I listen. (Which is how last week’s long run was quickly cut to a 5 miler.)
One thing that is a big difference for me, after years of being injured and not really being able to push myself, is learning the difference between pushing through an injury (bad!) and pushing through soreness (necessary evil). So, this weekend’s long run was all about embracing my sore tired legs and pushing through the soreness to finish the run strong.
I started off the week with four Orange Theory Fitness class (a great mix of speed work and strength work) so I was already going into this 10 miler with sore, tired legs. However, I decided to really push myself by starting off the run on one side of the Cooper River Bridge.
Yep, the bridge is that long. I took this picture from the bottom of one side when I was about to tackle it. It is our one “hill” in Charleston. A 2.5 mile long hill that has an elevation of 573 feet. For someone who lives in a town with not a single real hill, that is some hill work. Luckily, it was an overcast day (with some crazy wind) because the temperature was already in the 60s at 7am.
I am pretty sure I fit some of the most beautiful runs in Charleston into this long run.
The seawall along the harbor, water on one side and million dollar Civil War Era houses on the other, Water Front Park, which was in full bloom, and the Cooper River Bridge.
To top it all off – I did it all under my goal pace.
10 miles, with 5 of those being hills, at 10:22 (I had wanted a 10:30something).
It was also an awesome chance to test out my new Mizuno Running Wave Rider 18. Turns out they are just as awesome as my last pair. (Duh)
After that I drove over the bridge, no more running that bad boy, and parked near the farmers’ market. I was starving so I got the most amazing brunch – Huevos Ranchero. These were so good.
A crispy corn tortilla, rice, beans, spicy chorizo, two eggs over easy, salsa verde, lime crema, and a ton of cilantro (plus all the sriracha sauce I added on top). I may now crave this after every long run. It was not the healthiest, but it is seriously the best breakfast I have had in a long time.
Then I walked around downtown for a bit before remembering that Cupcake had sent my a email for a free birthday month cupcake. Since I was right there anyways… I mean how can you turn down a free cupcake?!?
Yes, I want to learn to live healthier.
No, I do not ever want to be so healthy I turn down a free birthday cupcake.
The gluten free flavor of the day was key lime, so it was like fate – I LOVE citrus everything!
All in all a fabulous day. It was so wonderful to be able to run on sore legs and still push myself. I am learning how to listen to my body and how to tell the difference between sore and injured.
Eggs over easy (like in my huevos rancheros) yes or no?
Dad and I love them, mom and sister-in-law not so much.
Favorite cupcake/cake flavor?
I love lemon, hummingbird (it is a Southern thing, think carrot cake minus carrots plus pineapple instead), and carrot.