On I went, out of the wood, passing the man leading without knowing I was going to do so. Flip-flap, flip-flap, jog-trot, jog-trot, curnchslap-crunchslap, across the middle of a broad field again, rhythmically running in my greyhound effortless fashion, knowing I had won the race though it wasn't half over, won it if I wanted it, could go on for ten or fifteen or twenty miles if I had to and drop dead at the finish of it, which would be the same, in the end, as living an honest life like the governor wanted me to. -Alan Sillitoe, "Loneliness of the Long Distance Runner"

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

I'm BACK!!!

My first run back was the middle of last week (all on the down-low, as it was still against doctor's orders).  How did it go?

Well...  honestly, not very well.  My sister instructed me to do 3 miles - no more - and that I could walk if I needed to.  I stupidly picked 10:30am on a hot day.  It was already in the mid-80s when I left my apartment.

I don't know about you, but my runs follow a pretty standard trajectory.  Something like this:

Miles 0-.25: "I'm running!  This is so awesome!!!"
Miles .25-~1.25/1.5: "Why am I doing this. This sucks. GO HOME. Crap, if I turn around I have to run home. So I'll gut it out. But this sucks."
Miles 1.5-3: "Eh, this isn't that bad.  Nice day out."
Miles 3-3.2: "HALFWAY THERE! Take a walk break. Check your email. But don't dawdle... too much."
Miles 3.2-6: "I love running. So nice out. I love running.  Running is awesome.  It's basically like flying.  But better."

Well, sadly, a problem I was having before I took time off has continued.  I don't know how better to describe it than to say that I'm not "clicking in" to my runs.  That point I get to around mile 1.5, where I just settle in, I'm warmed up, my body has accepted that like it or not I'm running now - that hasn't been happening.  I wasn't ever, ever getting to the last phase, the phase that keeps me coming back for more.  And that would describe this most recent run.

In terms of pace, the first mile was too fast, and then the second and third were too slow (go figure).  My legs - which I expected to feel superfresh - felt like jelly in a bad way.  I noticed my ITB for the first time, ironically the day after it had been "kneaded out" on a foam roller.

More tomorrow on my leap back into the deep end of the running pool, as I attempt to pick up where I've left off with mixed success.


  1. Well, at least you're running again. ;) How is your ITB today?

  2. The ITB is doing much better. No pain at all today. Turns out I need to get a bigger foam roller, though, who knew!

  3. bigger? like the longer ones? i bought a short one 'cause i'm cheap.

    BTW, I made an appointment with Dr Babiy! They asked who referred me and I said you. Maybe you get a free PT session or something out of it. I also felt vaguely weird referencing an "internet" person; I actually had to stop and think for a second to prevent saying "go tracy go sent me!" LOL... a couple more things:1) how very efficient of you to pre-write all of your posts; I'm far too disorganized for that, and 2)Are you quoted in Hal Higdon's marathon book? I read the name and it stuck. No, I rpomise I'm not actually stalking you, just in an internet way. Glad the post from the future indicates you're feeling better!

  4. Thicker, not longer. I went with the cheapest one Road Runner Sports had, and evidently it's not right. Dumb. I guess I need 6" and I have 4".

    Am I quoted in Hal's book? Any chance you know what page? I know my sister is, but I haven't read it, truth be told. My sister was one of Hal's very first internet "V-Team" members. For a while, Hal was mining the V-Team like crazy for quotes for his publications. Hal's wife (Rose Musacchio Higdon) is actually my grandfather's cousin (true story). We're not close, though.

    I'm very curious to hear what you think of Dr. Babiy. So far so good for me, although I'm not sure if it was the magic of the diagnosis/PT or just the rest...

  5. Amazingly enough I found it (that book is completely full of quotes. Mostly I skip those parts. How maybe-yours caught my eye, I'll never know.)Pg 319, third edition, "Tracy Musacchio of Philadelphia works out math problems in her head. 'It's 70 degrees out. What's that in Celsius? How high can I name prime numbers? What's 86 squared? It seems silly, but it works for me.'" Where's your sister's?

  6. That's totally me. I still do that sometimes, too. I've actually never looked through the book, and now I'm completely amazed: on p. 53, with the first-timers, I'm facebook friends with 5 of those people and used to live with one of them (Dave Russ, while we were both in Boston). My sister is on p. 141 and 335. It's so crazy - I had no idea that the new edition of the book had so much of the V-Team in it. Thanks for pointing that out!! And I hope it doesn't take away your faith in the book now you know who one of his sources was :)

  7. And to think, I always thought that *this* was my moment of running glory (also courtesy of Hal and the V-Team):


  8. I do not in fact ever reach your usual 3.2-6 euphoria. Instead, at miles 3.2-6 I usually experience more of a : YOu aren't dying, it's okay, keep breathing, WHY AM I DOING THIS???" I don't get a runner's high. Ever.