Pardon the running interruption, but life has been a little crazy the last week. California turned into a sauna (yes I am talking straight up humidity and 90-100) just in time for the ol’ outdoor wedding.
Don’t worry I figured out a way to keep myself cool.
We had a house full of guests and I actually got dressed up and wore high heels which happens oh so very rarely.
But fear not…I kept running.
I took advantage of the extra hands around the house to sneak in a few miles over the longish weekend and was able to get close to 20 in over 5 days . Turns out my hammy is lovin’ this Miami-like weather because even the greatest level of effort is yielding sloth-speed miles.
The truth is, the heat is giving me a chance to do some seriously proper recovery from an almost injury – you know when you are flirting with something serious and have the option to push it over the edge into sidelined for months or actually, you know, BE SMART.
So how do you handle the wiggles/niggles that could turn into something worse before they do?
–Go See Someone. Yes, schedule a hot date with your doc/PT/whomever. Having someone watch your mechanics and give you an actual indication of what is going is
probably perhaps maybe most definitely better than a google search. Don’t get me wrong, I love to let the internet diagnose me, but I usually get this confirmed just annoy my sports med doc when I go in to find out what is really happening.
-Stretch, Stretch, Stretch. Spend some serious time with the foam roller and lacrosse ball. I have always been a big foam rolling fan, but honestly, one of the BEST gifts ever was
the gift of my Trigger Point Therapy Foam Roller from kids. The moments of pain we have go to 50 Shades of Red, but it’s worth it to help keep everything loose and limber.
I also try to remember how lonely my life was without my lacrosse ball. I’ve probably googled every pressure point on the leg and use the lacrosse ball on it regularly. Some people can be intimidated, but it’s really super easy. I plan on posting a “how to” on this in the near future.
-Keep it Chill. Ice away. Don’t be afraid to use every bag o’ veggies or your kids lunch ice packs on every part of your legs. I’ve been known to walk around with them stuck in my compression shorts throughout the day (and perhaps to the neighbor kids’ giggling even walking around the neighborhood with a bag o’ peas stuck in my pants). 20 minutes on, 20 minutes off on the niggly area a few times a day.
-Slow It Down. It’s every runner’s (okay not really, just the Type A ones) nightmare when you’re told not to push it, but it’s critical to slow down. I have really slowed my pace down by 30-90 seconds a mile. Some days it kills me. No, I probably won’t be pulling any PR’s out of my butt for a while, but um hello…I’m running….it could be so much worse, like, I could be…errr…..NOT RUNNING.
Sometimes a little niggle means lower mileage as well. I read somewhere (sorry internets, you’re so big I can’t remember where), that your fitness doesn’t usually deteriorate until 2 weeks of inactivity, so even shorter, slower, smaller workouts are better than nothing and the impact not near as great as it seems.
-Switch it Up. As much as running is my life therapy, I find the niggles disappear faster when I keep it mixed up – hit the bike, swim (ugh, I love to hate you and hate to love you but it’s happening…,) take a HIIT class, whatever it takes. Heck, schedule a hot date with your DVD player and your favorite workout video (I love me some Jillian Michaels).
And if you’re questioning whether or not you should be running, for the love of the land, please just go watch some really awful reality TV and suck on a GU pack if you’re feeling really guilty….your body will thank you when you’re running in 3 days instead of 3 months later.
Do you have other tips to cure the niggles?