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Time is (not) on my side February 26, 2010

Posted by bettyjoan in Running.
Tags: , ,

Just because I’m a seasoned (haha) triathlete doesn’t mean that I don’t encounter challenges in my training.  At the moment, my biggest challenge is finding the time to get all of my workouts in.

Last year, I was living in downtown Atlanta, so my commute to and from my Decatur office was pretty darn short.  In fact, if I wanted to get a cycling workout in, I could just bike to work (it was about 6 miles one-way).  I was working a schedule of 8:30 AM to 6 PM, so I had plenty of time to exercise in the morning.  Freedom Park was right across the street from our building, meaning that I had a plethora of well-paved jogging routes.  We also had a really awesome dog-walker, so I rarely had guilt about leaving Jack (our pitbull) in the crate for an extra hour while I took a quick swim.

Now we live in Lawrenceville, so my commute is much longer (and prohibits cycling).  In order to minimize traffic congestion, I changed by schedule to 7 AM to 4:30 PM, meaning that I have to leave the house at 6:15 AM in order to get to the office on time.  Needless to say, that makes morning workouts somewhat unappealing.  It also means that coming home and dealing with the pup is priority numero uno on most days, as he spends more time in the crate than he did in our previous arrangement.  There are sidewalks and bike lanes near my house, but the area is pretty congested, and you definitely have to drive to get to the closest park.  I find myself really struggling to follow our suggested training schedule, given these and other limitations.

This week, I was feeling so guilty about my lack of discipline that I decided to kill two birds with one stone and get some runs in WITH my dog.  On Monday, we did about two miles (took about 30 minutes), and on Tuesday, we did just under four miles (in about 46 minutes).  Deep down, I knew I wasn’t supposed to run two days in a row, and I also knew that I was probably overdoing it in terms of mileage, but I just desperately wanted to get into some sort of routine.  Of course, you can guess what happened next…

My left knee started feeling all kinds of jacked up.  The pain flared up shortly after each run, and it was particularly sharp when going up and down stairs (down was actually worse).  I pretty much wrote it off as getting older and needing to lose a little weight to take some pressure off (both of which are probably true).  However, when I was swimming with the Team on Wednesday night, I noticed that my knee was still acting up, especially when I was kicking in back balance.  I started chatting with my running coach and one of my mentorees (who happens to have also been a TNT running coach), and they both hypothesized that I was having issues with my IT band due to a very common syndrome known as “too much, too fast.”

So, as proud as I was of my willpower and motivation, now I am hurting and need to take it easy (which is what I was trying to compensate for in the first place).  I’m going to my favorite running store this afternoon to get some input and advice about how to address the pain, but what say you?  Have any of you had IT band issues like this?  How did you treat the pain?  In this crazy busy world, what tricks do you use to stay on track and get your workouts in?



1. Mom - February 27, 2010

I cook on Wednesday due to training, so I could add 1 other day of Jack walking and Jason could do 1 more early day if schedule permits so that you could have 2 more afternoon times to bike or run on your own. Would that help?

bettyjoan - March 29, 2010

Yes, it would definitely help – now that the weather is getting warmer and it is staying light out longer, I will definitely take you up on it.

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