Home » Running » When a run goes completely awry

When a run goes completely awry

I had planned to run yesterday. Booming thunder at 5am, shortly accompanied by those big raindrops which hurt when they hit you, put a quick stop to those plans. Okey doke…knowing I needed to do something to get myself back on track, I went to the gym for some resistance training and inclined treadmill walking. BTW – yes, yes I do have t-rex arms today, completely unable to lift them even above my shoulders. I decided I would just shift my run to today.

I didn’t even really procrastinate this morning once the kids were off to school. I’d put my running clothes on right out of bed. I had my coffee and some sustenance. Once I returned from dropoff, I had some water, used the ever-faithful foam roller, grabbed my sunglasses and headphones, and was on my merry way. I almost never hit the light right that’s about a quarter-mile into my run. I’d started slowly, so when I hit the red light, legs warm, I did some easy stretching of my calves and hamstrings. Just before the light changed, and after the left-turners were just finished, another runner blew past me, happily waving as she bolted ahead of me into the crosswalk. What the? Knowing I’d never catch her (I’ve seen her three times now – she’s pretty fast and you can just tell she’s been running for years), I settled in to a good, haven’t-run-in-a-couple-weeks pace. Now, I can’t run a mile in any direction without hitting a hill. This particular hill on this particular route has a decent elevation change. I made it up with little trouble, and hey, there was that happy runner, not too far ahead.

As the road flattened out, I felt a burning start in my right calf. It’s happened a few times before. I let myself live in denial for twenty more yards. The burning spread up the back of my entire right leg. (Insert choice words here) Knowing my muscles were cramping up, and really not wanting to burn my Achilles, I stopped. Maybe if I stretch it out a bit, walk it out, the cramping will ease and I can continue my run. Uhhhhh…..it took five minutes to even be able to stretch  decently. I stood there for ten minutes working on that leg. Then I tried to run again. I didn’t even make it ten yards. I stopped my running app, and turned around to start the mile-long walk home. I was frustrated, and just plain mad. Even walking burned, but unless I called a friend to come pick me up – the ultimate runner’s humiliation – a walk was in the cards.

I’m still frustrated, and completely bummed. I know it will take a few days of resting that Achilles before I can even attempt another run. I’m struggling to overcome those negative voices in my head screaming at me. My own body image has taken a serious dive this summer and instead of working on that recovery, I’m sidelined again, albeit for just a few days. So much for positivity. I’m going to pout today, while I ice/rest/motrin. Tomorrow, I will pick myself back up and get on with it.

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