Sunday, November 13, 2011

The Unwise Runner

What do you do the day after posting on your blog about how are suffering hip issues!?

Run 22 miles!!

This morning, after behaving and taking several days off running, I decided I (ahem, my hip) was feeling decent and set out for a long one.

From miles 4 through 21, I didn't notice my hip at all.  Running clearly "warms" it up, as it feels stiffer when I am sitting or walking.

I ran 6 laps around Lake Merritt (about 3.5 miles/lap), plus the distance to and from my front door, for a total of 22.13 miles in 2 hours 46 minutes.  Pace: 7:31 min/mile.

6 laps was pretty monotonous, but I listened to Mike and Tom Eat Snacks (Michael Ian Black and Tom Cavanagh, both of whom amuse me to no end when I run) and felt really good until mile 22.  As I approached mile 20, I was happy to find that each mile was ticking away at the same pace, if not faster, than the first 10 miles.  Like so:

Miles 1-10:    8:11; 7:34; 7:22; 7:37; 7:32; 7:38; 7:30; 7:39; 7:24; 7:27
Miles 11-20:  7:36; 7:28; 7:32; 7:20; 7:27; 7:24; 7:24; 7:29; 7:22; 7:31
Miles 21-22:  7:24; 7:29; 1:00 for 0.13 miles.

Mile 22 was the only rough mile.  Both hips started stiffening up, it felt almost like I had to shorten my stride to deal with them.  There were also brief moments in that last mile which forced me to recall the feelings of the last horrible-but-lovely miles of a marathon.  That's something that I can't say I have ever experienced in a normal run, so it was a miniature test of facing THE WALL.  Shudder.

Water stops not included in the total time.  My Garmin auto-paused when I stopped at water fountains (4-5 times).

Overall, I'm glad I got a long run in despite the fact that a wiser runner may have continued to nurse their hip.  I have never claimed to be the wisest runner.  I still have 3 weeks to get this hip happy... I am really appreciative of your stretching, icing, and foam-rolling advice.  I don't have a foam roller, but I DO have a Tiger Tail (hehe....such a silly name).  So I will attack with the Tiger Tail.

A couple non-running pieces of fun.

Last weekend I visited the niece Gemma again, and practiced restraint by only kissing her 23 times.

She drools a lot....real immature

Yesterday, I went to our annual Friendsgiving (or Friend Thanksgiving, whichever term your prefer).  Conversations were flowing, food was in abundance, and I wore my $18 Costco Kid's dress.

I was told it looked Presidential, which is hilarious when I think about the fact that Costco is trying to make little kids dress like Hillary Clinton.

Doing my best Presidential pose. 

Friends eating

eating and making spiderwebs out of my hair

A lot of toys made their way to the dinner table, as there were at least 6 toddlers

This is my second year partaking in the Tofurkey, and I have to say, it does not suck at all.  I truly like it more than real turkey.  Real turkey always tasted slightly...I don't know, raw or something.

I'm getting giddy for the holidays!  Fingers crossed I get some days off work....

Do you celebrate a Friend Thanksgiving?


  1. I have both the Tiger Tail and a foam roller. Roller is way more effective. Unless you have a helper than can put most of your body weight of pressure onto your IT band (b/c it's pretty hard to do yourself). It's worth the small investment for the roller (I've had mine since 2003 when I was training for LA).

    Since my parents moved out to CA from Mass in 2006, we've had at least 4 ppl for Thanksgiving.
    This year they are in Italy. So, it's looking like a two-person turkey day. I would eat tofurkey but it wouldn't fly with the husband.

  2. I really don't know if there is such a thing as a 'cautious' or 'wise' runner, not when we love the sport (and the experience of running itself) so much. We are only human: the desire to 'test things out' or, no matter what the circumstances, to believe that things might just be okay on the next run, during periods of injury, can spur us on regardless of what might be 'best.' People can finger-wag all they like, but unless they're injured themselves then they cannot know what it's like, not even if they've been injured in the past, because when you're in that moment, the moment when a planned run as gone by, when you have to redefine yourself in relation to running, it's like you've lost a piece of your heart in the present, and not the past.

    Elites are a different matter: they have coaches to steal their running shoes or superglue them to the couch when they're struggling, but I've done the same thing as you (um, though never that distance at that speed!) with lots of injuries, including stress fractures which still niggle me (and I know how monumentally stupid that is) but it's so tempting, always, to risk the 90% pain potential for the 10% of 'I will finish this run, and thus feel alive again.'


  3. People play up their injuries, play down there injuries, you never really know what's actually going on. So for others to judge what an unwise move is, it just can't work that way. I'm sure I've done plenty of dumb things with running on muscles that probably needed an extra day off, and perhaps it's good or bad for it. Who really knows. That's what I love so much about running, we each make it our own and no one else can get plopped into our running schedule and have the same plan work exactly the same for them. If that even makes sense to you.

    This year, I have been a little more conservative about running too much after I had that stress fracture last year that put me out for five months. But I think it may have paid off because I didn't really have many issues to speak of this year so far.

    I wonder if your hip thing may be tendonitis-ish because of the way that it gets better after warming up. Just a thought, I really have no idea.

  4. GIRL...take care of that HIP!! I can't wait for your marathon PR recap so we need that hip (now hips) to not be stiff. You are a speed demon and I love your pictures. Yep, we definitely celebrate Thanksgiving and this year we will be in Cali to do so!

  5. Our friends throw an "Orphan" Thanksgiving every year. The name started the first year, when they gathered everyone who was still in town for the holiday. But, they realized they wanted to celebrate with all their friends, not just the ones who had nowhere else to go, so they moved it up by a few weeks, but kept the name.

    They threw it Sunday, and it was amazing. Deep fried turkey, OH MAN.

  6. Thanksgiving: I'll have to take your word for the Tofurkey. I don't eat meat but I usually make an appealing stand alone veggie main dish like wild mushroom lasagne. I wouldn't turn it down if someone offered it to me. We don't have family close by and I will not travel for Thanksgiving (of all the holidays, it seems like the nuttiest). We usually wind up going to an "orphans" Thanksgiving (on the day itself) or hosting for our friends. Fun! This year we'll be in London!

    Take it easy with that hip. I finished the Clarksburg (half) yesterday and man is my hip sore, but I'm done with my big training for the year. I'm interested to hear what suggestions you get for stretching out because mine is unresponsive to everything and rolling it made it seem worse. I should probably go see someone but I know I'll keep running.

    Keep kissing babies, it's very therapeutic and no need to throttle back, I'd say....

  7. Nice 22 miler! Now roll that hip out and tell it to be ready for CIM :) Can't wait for you to kick that course's hiney!

    I too am a Tofurkey lover. It's good!

    Hoping you get some well deserved time off for Thanksgiving!

  8. GEMMA!!!! I must see her again soon. Must.

    Jealous of your Friendsgiving. Thanksgiving may be my favorite holiday, and I would have loved the opportunity to celebrate it twice this year. Hope I get to see you soon!!!

  9. You look great in your "presidential" dress - that color is nice on you. And, rock star with the 22 miles! ;-)

  10. Nice 22 miler girl!! You're so speedy and such a good pacer. You're going to do great in CIM!! :)

    Never tried tofurkey. Your niece is precious!!

    Have a great week!! :)

  11. I've been a vegetarian for over five years, and I hate Tofurkey. I think the sides that come with it are tasty, but there are better fake meats out there.

    Gemma is adorable, drool and all.

  12. A lacrosse ball works well as a foam roller replacement (and is less than $2).
    I need to find the auto-pause setting on my garmin!

  13. I've had some hip soreness after speed workouts lately and find that resistance bands are working wonders for me. Since I started the bands, I haven't had hip pain. I just do 10 reps of leg out to the side, leg to the front and then knee to chest. Hope you are able to overcome this crap soon.

  14. omg that is hilarious! you do look a little presidential..maybe in a mandy moore movie? Anyways I've been wanting to try tofurkey...maybe i'll get it...

  15. oh and PS I don't know if I loved my tapering plan....I hated it in reality and mine was complicated by a bad upper respiratory infection. I want to taper less before my next marathon.

  16. 7:30s for 20+ miles WITH hip pain?! Dang girl, you crazy (that sounded funnier in my head).


we have a strict no-word-verification policy. Comment away!