A week ago, I bought a Nike+. If you’re not familiar with it, this little device uses a transmitter in your shoe to communicate to an iPod receiver the distance, pace, time, and calories burned for each run. Now, if you’re a gadget-hound like me, this is the perfect motivation. It records your run data and uploads it to the Nike+ website when you sync with iTunes, so you get a little home page where you can track runs, set goals, and participate in challenges.
The trouble is, the thing is so cool that it makes me want to run more just so I can see a taller bar on my bar graph of runs. During the first week with the Nike+, I ran 17 miles–significantly more than my previous week’s mileage, which hovered somewhere around 8 miles. It was just so exciting to see the miles add up and realize that I’m a lot stronger than I thought. One four mile run means I can do another the next day, right?
I survived that week, but this past weekend, I ran my first 5-mile long run, followed by a 2-mile walk/run with a friend. If I’d stopped at the 5 miles, there would be no issue. But I didn’t, and as a result of the 7 miles, have been dealing with an aching body ever since. Combine that with less sleep due to a crazy work schedule, and you’ve got the recipe for misery.
My hips ache, my right knee has a twinge, and the little tendons running from the outside of my ankle to the muscles on the outer right part of my calves are killing me. After much internet research, I discovered this post about stretching the peroneals, and it isolated the pain, all right. Ouch! I’ll be adding that to my regular post-run stretching routine. Since Mondays were listed as “Strength and Stretch,” I did some arm/ab moves and the Yogatic Yoga for Runners, and Yoga for Hips videos.
So much of my information about running comes from the internet, for better or for worse. Should I run through soreness? Google will know! After reading many, many message boards that said it is okay to run through mild to medium soreness, I set out for my Tuesday 3-mile run.
Turns out, I should have listened to my aching, exhausted body and stayed home. Today’s run was listed as 2-mile run or cross-train, and I opted to stay home with Jillian Michaels’ 30-day Shred (level 1) to get in some strength training moves and give my running muscles a break.
Lesson? Your body will tell you if you’re overdoing it. The hard part is giving it what it needs! Tomorrow is a 3 miler + strength…here’s hoping my legs are back up to full capacity.