November has been a big bust for me. Six weeks ago I was on track for another record mileage year, over 1500 miles. But my long string of mostly injury-free running came to an end as I tweaked a ligament just below my ankle. Ah well. Luckily it was AFTER my trail marathon, so it didn't ruin any big plans. So I vowed to take some time off and let it heal.
Sadly, it is like most of my ailments lately. It just doesn't heal very quickly. Seems like every time something hurts it takes months and months to go away. Time off doesn't seem to help. And running doesn't seem to make it worse. It seems like it will be like my plantar fasciitis, or my other foot ailments, or my wonky knee, and will just be a nagging pain for a long time.
Yesterday I did my local turkey trot 3 mile. It was cold and rainy and I had already picked up my free sweatshirt, and there was no chip timing or race results. So there was plenty of incentive to blow it off. But I wanted to keep the tradition going, and I wanted to test the foot. The pain has been mild but nagging and basically not improving for 5 weeks. And this run was no different. It hurt a little, but no big deal. Afterward it hurt a little more, but I popped some advil and a couple hours later it was back to normal. So I am going to go back to running and gradually pick up some miles.
Because I need to! I have gained about 12 pounds in 6 weeks and my pants are getting kind of hard to button! And the race was embarrassing. Even slower than the 5K I did 3 weeks ago and I felt so out of shape. I bolted out at about 7:00 pace and quickly decided that was going to be too fast. I had no real goal or reason to push it, so I treated it like a tempo and just ran hard. Mile one was 7:22 and I was running with a friend. But then she pulled ahead and I realized I was slowing. Mile two was 7:42 which felt plenty hard enough thank you. Mile three I hung on and maintained with a little push at the end to catch one guy I knew. 7:39. Not close to the 6:45 pace I had been doing for a 5K earlier this year. Now today, the day after, my quads are sore! After 3 miles! Yikes. So I'm going to rest a day or two and kick off my comeback tour on December 1. Banking November with 8 miles, my worst month in nine years.
But I have plenty to be thankful for on this Thanksgiving weekend. I had a good long injury free run up until now, and I can still run without much pain, so I can't complain (too much). Life is good.