To Run or Not To Run – That is the Question

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This blog is going to drive Jodi crazy! Why? Just like our polar opposite way of race preparation (I bet she already has her playlist created!), I am still debating whether I will attempt the half or cheer on my BRF.

Let me take a step back and play catch up. After a very painful heel injury coupled with sciatic in late April, I was forced to miss 3 of my long runs. The good news, after a very humbling trip to the doctors, was that it appeared that I had “simply” pulled my muscle and that the injury wouldn’t be chronic. I was to rest the affected areas and lower my mileage – considerably. I was told to listen to my body.

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So that’s just what I did.  After about a week’s rest, I returned to my twice a week 5km, running intervals at a slower pace. This has been the training plan for the last 3 weeks. I have increased the tempo, added in speed work, and was able to complete a one hour run without any pain. My longest run was 15km. A special thank you to Jodi for the KT tape in my birthday loot bag! But, have I done enough to safely run the upcoming T.O. Women’s Half this weekend?

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Meanwhile, my dear BRF, Jodi, is probably ready to go with gels and playlists already made. She probably has her most treasured lululemon bag packed with different outfits to choose from. Her game plan includes projecting split times, reviewing the route and most definitely, a PR goal has been set. I love this about her!

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Ironically, my pre race antics are a bit more dramatic this time round. What bothers me most was that after a year of training for the Princess, I have come to simply love my alone time, pounding the pavement. It is truly a moment of time that forces me to live in that specific moment. I love the personal satisfaction that I feel after a run. I have won my battle against my foe: consistency! That is until this injury put a wrench in my plans.  No matter what, I am looking so forward to my much-anticipated BRF weekend away with Laural and Jodi.  There is a BAMR birthday to celebrate! Now, I really need to finalize my plan for this weekend: Will I attempt the half marathon or cheer on my BAMRS?

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I have also realized something about myself.  The thought of not running the half marathon is disappointing but not life altering.  I am more upset about not getting the FOXY finisher necklace than about not starting or finishing. This is not so surprising to my BRF as initially it has been about the BLING and the achievement of the impossible.  In my mind, I ran my goal of the Princess Half Marathon in February.  Maybe, this is telling me something!  I have come to adore my twice weekly 5-6 km runs.  I too cannot believe I am writing this – I find the 10km distance long enough to be challenging and personally fulfilling, but short enough to not put unrealistic pressure on me to find the time to do the long runs that preparing for a half requires.  A year ago, I could barely run 3km.  Perhaps, with time, my running goals will again change.  And, if not, is it so bad?

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This injury has affected my confidence more than anything else.  For my sanity, I need to make a decision to run or not.  Unfortunately, the 5km sold out early and I was unable to transfer.  Perhaps, cheering on my BRFs would provide an interesting perspective.  After all, I know just how much it means to me to see familiar faces in the crowd. Just in case, right beside my running shoes I will be sure to pack a permanent black marker and poster paper.  My lesson learned this time around is that running can be so much more about the mental game than the physical preparation.

Has an injury ever put you in a situation that you had to make the decision to run or cheer on the sidelines?  If you could do it again, would you make the same choice?

Princess Alana

**A word from Princess Jodi: My play list was finished on Sunday. My outfit has been laid out all week (and planned much longer). My gels are indeed packed in my race belt. So either my BRF knows me all too well, or I have become much too predictable! Princess Alana, whether you are running with me or cheering me across the finish line, I could not do it without you! And if you don’t run, I promise not to flaunt my finisher necklace too much 😉

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4 thoughts on “To Run or Not To Run – That is the Question

  1. Alana,
    I’m glad you’ll be there, no matter what 🙂
    Couple things 1) I bet you can run the 5k. What are they going to do? Tell you you can’t? I think you should have that as a back-up plan. People drop out.
    2) If you do run it – just run with your phone. See how far you get. If you want to drop out just call my husband and he’ll pick you up. Seriously.

    Just glad you’ll be there (and PS I have nothing set out either – Playlist? nope. Outfit? Nope)

  2. So true that running can be more mental than physical. And, I agree that 10K is a really good distance–enough to make you feel like you’ve accomplished something, but not too long to really cause damage! Do what your heart tells you to do, not what anyone else might expect of you!!

  3. It’s great that you’ll still be there regardless for your friend – sometimes dedication to your friendships is just as important as dedication to your health. I’m running the Ten Miler in October with my coworker that just so happens to be my sidekick in all this. 🙂 Regardless of what you decide just make sure the choice is good for you.

    http://rookierunning.blogspot.com/

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