Today was like any other day, and then bammmmmmmmmmm. I opened a random email from active…you know the emails I’m talking about if you have ever signed up for a real race. They send you a million of them with random running topics. Well for some reason I opened this one instead of throwing it into my trash…probably because I was feeling a bit unmotivated to run today and I was desperately searching for something to get me excited. Well as I said……BAMMMMMM
Q: Are treadmills “easier” on your body than running outdoors?
Yes and no.
Longer answer: In general, running on a treadmill is less stressful on the body than running outdoors. John Post, the medical director for TrainingBible Coaching, explains that the treadmill absorbs a significant amount of impact, sparing your body. On the other hand, he says, “The downside is that it doesn’t condition the shock-absorbing musculature of the lower extremities like road running does.”
Result: Over the long term, heavy treadmill use may actually leave you more prone to injuries like stress fractures.
And with that, my mind was blown. Well, not blown….but yes, blown. I kinda knew this all along, but when the experts just come out and say it, it makes it more real to me. What I’m referring to is that last sentence….about the stress fractures….I guess anyone who happens upon this post hasn’t learned EVERYTHING about me, but lets just say stress fractures and me are frenemies. They want to be my b.f.f., but I just want them to go far, far away and bother another gal.
Anyway, every year that I train for a marathon, it is winter, it is freezing, and I don’t mix well with either of those. So what happens is I spend a majority of my time training inside on my third b.f.f. (no where near as special as my first b.f.f., my iPod (no joke) and of course very close to my pal, stress fractures (sorry Turd, if you are even checking this site, you are fourth in line, but tied with S, Lil T, and K-Swizzle))—my third b.f.f., my TREADMILL. I am still amazed that thing still works and hasn’t fallen apart. We spend more time together daily than most people do with their significant other. I’ve always thought that my relationship with my treadmill was an issue, however…I part from him (obviously my treadmill is a man.) for a minute and immediately I am hurt. It’s like one awful abusive relationship. Every year when the weather gets nice, I will venture outside and throw myself into an intense run, and again, BAMMMM. Hello stress fracture, hello rest.
Turd has always insisted that my stress fractures were due to me running too often with too few breaks. I often disagreed. I always take 1-2 days off per week, while other bloggers seem to run double what I run and never take a day off. I have always noticed the relationship with me starting to run outside and getting a stress fracture, but when I finally read that statement, it proved my point and finally made me think about what I’ve been doing.
The first thing I did, after re-reading that article, was send it to Mr. Turd. The second thing I did was plan my run outside. And then as soon as I got home (Yep, still got that motivation in me) I was out the door and getting in my miles in the burbs. No treadmill for me today, and hell, I think no treadmill for me tomorrow. I think I’ll hit up a local park. I have gotten my motivation to run outside now…or at least for a while. I will suck it up for the cold if it means I can keep running (and not have to deal with excessive medical bills for stupid injuries). Like I wasn’t motivated enough, I then saw this blog post from someone I just started following, and BAMMMMM. More things to think about. Winter could suck its cold, nasty self because I am going to dominate it until Spring!
I already find the title of this post to be annoying, but oh well. Every time I thought about what to write, that song jumped out at me. This blog is indeed ironic….like a traffic jam when you’re already late…and a “No Smoking” sign on your cigarette break. Okay, enough of that awful song. Clearly not Alanis’s strongest moment in my eyes, but hey, I won’t knock a fellow runner.
The irony is related to this website. I originally said I was starting this blog to track my running progress and to keep myself motivated during my marathon training-something that I have struggled with every year I have trained for the marathon. The idea of running is amazing to me. I love running. Even when I don’t want to do it, I eventually feel good about my choice to actually get up and run. What does not sound amazing is someone telling me to run. Isn’t that the truth though?! When you are told to do something, it tends to make it so much less fun. “Go clean your house” sounds so awful, but when I CHOOSE to clean my house on my own, it is almost therapeutic. “Go make dinner” “Go read a book” “Go run 14 miles”……..eh. See-there went all of the fun…. Ok, to most people, that does not sound fun at all. But to me, it doesn’t sound awful, until I’m being told to do it and know that I have to do it. On any given day, I will pick a random amount of miles and go do it just for the hell of it. I set my mind to accomplishing something just to prove to myself, but I can always change it up. Not so much changing can be made when I know I have an overpriced running race and I have to be able to run a brutal amount of miles.
SOOOOOOOOOOOO, back to my girl, Alanis, right? (Of course all of this talk about her has got me motivated to listen to some of her songs I do feel are wonderful…the ones that remind me of junior high are pretty amazing.) The irony is that I started this little bloggie here to keep me motivated, but between starting to think about writing about running and reading a million other blogs about running, I’ve been beyond motivated to stick to my running plan….so motivated I’ve basically found zero time to throw a post up about it. I’ve been strict to my schedule’s mileage and have even noticed my speed coming back to where it used to me. It’s been pretty awesome. I have had my yucky days of running (this am when my legs were dead), but I’ve had some pretty awesome ones-like last Wednesday when I decided during the work day that I wanted to knock out my long run early in the week because it sounded good to me. 14 miles sounded good to me? I’m not even going to lie, I actually enjoyed it. I usually dread them all week and put it off until I can no longer avoid it, and here I was, excited to get in some mileage and clear my mind. It was incredible. I actually didn’t even have to push myself to get off the couch because I just couldn’t wait to get moving….And this feeling has not went anywhere.
I am anxious to get in another long run, which again, is a new feeling to me. Tomorrow I will devote to resting, a good walk, and of course, working 12 hours, but the few days after that….hmmmm. I have no long run in my schedule for the next week as it is a recovery week, but I already hear myself saying ” should I take advantage of the excitement for running while I still can?” I know the recovery week is placed there for a reason as I’ve learned from the past three stress fractures a thing or two or three, but what if I lose that feeling? Will it just go as quickly as it came? OR on the other side of things (thank you six years of psych education for giving me this fancy term to use…and of course the debt and lack of financial resources) what if I continue to hungrily grasp for those positive running feelings (endorphin rush or crack-induced delirium?) until they disappear…oh no, will I overdose? Will I go through withdrawal? Will I deal with an extinction burst??? Will I be slapping at that damn lever obsessively in hopes that I will continue to receive a reward, but come up with nothing? I can’t get that thought out of my head….stupid thoughts, right? But I know where these thoughts are going, and I can tell you all signs are point to >>>>INJURY<<<<!!!! I am going to push myself too hard. I am going to lose motivation from tedious, continuous running on painful leg injuries. I am going to ruin my marathon race for the second year in a row. I don’t want THAT. THAT was probably one of the worst pains I have dealt with. Sounds kinda vain and shallow when I say that, but it was. To plan and dream for months of a challenge and three day before find out you can’t do it…and then see thousands of others who can….That hurt. I’m hoping those are the feelings that will keep me level and in prospective, but the excitement I feel from this blog, other blogs, and running in general is overpowering right now. Lets hope I can use it to help me in the right ways….I will keep you posted on that one…hopefully in a more timely manner!