I’m a new runner. I only started running about 6 months ago. Since then, I have completed a couple of local 5ks, several virtual races, and gradually increased my mileage. I’m not the fastest runner, but I try hard and I am learning.
The last 2 months have been difficult for training. Between the heat, other activities, and several injuries/sore muscles, sometimes it’s hard to get the mileage that I want to get. Especially since I am training for a half-marathon in October.
My biggest problem is pushing too hard, too fast. It usually means I will end up hurting something. That usually means I am out of running commission for a while. For me, that’s hard. I want to do my best and I want to be out running. I can’t improve if I can’t get out there, right?
The last week or so, I have been battling a knee injury. I’ve done something to it…probably a strain. I figured something was wrong when I tried to do an 8 mile training run on Sunday and only made it ¾ of a mile…and even that was a struggle.
So why is this a problem? Some people may say: “Just stop running.” “Just ride a bike.” “Just don’t do it.” The issue is that I need to keep running. I can’t do my half-marathon on a bike. I can’t continue to improve my lifestyle without activity like this. Running has helped me in so many ways. It’s improved my health, it’s helped me lose weight, it’s made me stronger.
The result of my injury is that tomorrow, I will have my first DID NOT START (DNS) for a race I signed up for. It makes me sad to do this. Until this morning, I thought I was at least going to see if they would let me switch from the 10k to the 5k, because I can at least walk the 5k (they don’t allow walkers in the 10k). But the knee is just not cooperating and it’s telling me I need to rest it some more. I wanted to do this race – it was going to be my longest race to date and I wanted to put some more points on the board for the local Grand Prix competition (I’m currently in 4th place for my age group – yippee!).
While this is upsetting, I just have to keep my half-marathon in the back of my mind. That race needs to be my priority. It’s important to me. It’s with my niece, and it will be our first half. Vacation time has been requested and approved; the race has been paid for; plans are set. The only thing that will keep me from running that race is if a doctor says I can’t. Otherwise, I will be at that starting line with her on October 6th, race bib on, and ready to go. I don’t care if I run/walk, run, or crawl, but I will be in that race.
I am determined.