in the off-season

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


As illustrated by this giant tray full of desserts, I've been indulging a little. (In fact, this mountain of postprandial goodness followed a feast at the Lazy Ox Canteen on Saturday. Apparently dinner -- which involved a cheese plate, seven different types of tapas, Roussanne and seasonal holiday beers -- wasn't enough, so we went to the Nickel Diner and ate more.)

So it's no surprise that easing my way back into running has been challenging, to say the least. I took some time off after CIM to allow myself to recover -- my sad hips and sore knee needed a break. Since raceday, I've only run three times, for a whopping total of nine miles -- most of which were slow and characterized by feet that felt like led and very heavy breathing. (Although I will say I had a pretty decent tempo run today at lunch. Granted, it was only three miles, but I got negative splits, and the last mile was under a 9-minute pace. And this was with a headwind almost the entire time. Yeah!)

Even though I do have a race coming up in February, I'm trying not to think so much about mileage and training. Instead, I'm focusing on what I can do to strengthen my body so I don't have the aches and pains that have plagued me during the past few months. I know my injuries stem largely from a weak core, which is making my hips overcompensate, which results in really tight hip flexors and also ends up affecting my knees. And then I bonk at Mile 23 and want to lie down on the side of the road and cry.

So I've signed up for Pilates. (Dear self: Merry Christmas.) I had my first reformer/apparatus session tonight. (Yes, folks, double workout! Running on my lunch break! Pilates in the evening!) It was not easy. I felt like my instructor was pointing out weak spot after weak spot after weak spot. And then she said I really need to work on my walking before I can improve my running.

Yikes.

But I guess this is what it means to build a base, right?

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