Well after a fabulous week of running I found myself with some new pain the last 4 or so miles on our 22 mile run Sunday morning. I noted the pain, and didn't think much of it. It's 22 miles, things hurt when you run 22 miles. I took Monday off for some extra insurance and iced like a mad woman and even got in an ice bath Monday night.
Yesterday I decided to get in an easy lunch run to test things out and make sure everything was go for our track workout. I survived just over 7 easy miles, but the pain was still there. Mild, but a little worrisome.
Got to the track last night and hoped things would loosen up and allow me to do the workout. Unfortunately the lunch run, or perhaps the walk downstairs to the car, had left my leg more than mildly irritated and I decided I was not helping myself any by trying to force a track workout when I couldn't run 1.5 miles easy with any semblance of a normal gait. It was hard to pin point the pain, but I definitely felt searing pain at the top of the calf below the knee and I believe there is also pain in the tendon connecting the hamstring to the knee.
It hurts to walk and to touch. I took another ice bath and it did not feel like it responded to that at all. It was stiff this morning and painful getting up and down the stairs in the house. I decided last night that if I couldn't run I better at least try to swim to get in some sort of aerobic workout today. I dug out all my swim toys and called up Daisy to see if I could join her for her swim this morning. I figured worst case scenario I should be able to get in a pull workout, best case I'd be able to kick without it irritating the leg.
I was not exactly happy as I packed up all my swim stuff and woke up early and drove in a haze to the pool. I imagined that the swimming would not be any kind of substitute for my daily run and that it would be a chore that I would have to muster my way through when I would rather be doing something else. To my surprise it didn't feel any harder than it used to when I was swimming regularly, and I actually enjoyed getting in a mile with my friend. We did mostly pull, but I was able to swim normally without irritating the leg much for about half the workout. I would feel it the first kick off the wall, but otherwise not much. Unfortunately the swim did not seem to loosen things up as I had hoped it might and I was still hobbling around when we finished the workout to head into work on dry land.
I am sure that this injury did not come about randomly. My hamstrings have been barking at me the past month or so, and I have been willing my way through workouts hoping they would miraculously get better. I kept telling myself as long as they weren't getting worse it was ok. I have been tight on money so I have been putting off a massage, though the signs were there for weeks that I should be getting something done. I assumed my daily foam roller and stretching was enough. Clearly it was not.
I've got a massage scheduled for tomorrow. Hopefully she can help me loosen everything up and work with me to get my lower body back into alignment. Then in the afternoon I have a doctors appointment to hopefully diagnose whatever I did to my leg. I set up an ART appointment for next Wednesday (the earliest I could get in) and in the meantime I will be icing/stretching (or whatever the doc tells me to do) and hopefully swimming (going to need a gym membership) and doing some core work to keep some sort of fitness while I am not running. Hopefully I can get better fast, but the pain definitely has me nervous this might not be a quick fixer.
Not exactly where I pictured myself being this week. But obviously it could be much worse. Going to keep my head up, try and enjoy the swimming, and try to forget about the $27 I sent in to race on Sunday, and really try not to think about the possibility of not racing April 18th. But if it comes to that I have plenty of options left still this year. I am sure there is some lesson here that I should be learning. Probably that I should have been listening to my body all along and shouldn't have been pushing quite so hard. I am really so excited about racing Boston and about achieving my goals, so this is a bummer, but possibly it was an avoidable bummer and hopefully I won't put myself in this position again further down the line.