A break from running

20 Sep

I set out for a long run of 7 miles yesterday at my trail, Breakwater. The plan was to run 3/1 intervals, but after the first mile, my knee couldn’t take it. I was feeling heavy and out of breath. It finally hit me that I’ve absolutely dreaded running for the last few weeks. I no longer enjoy it, and the pain I feel afterwards is not worth it. After that first mile, I stopped my Garmin and headed back to the car. After a few minutes, I received a text from Jeff. It was a cute picture of him. He’s a constant source of inspiration for me without even knowing it.

I turned the Garmin back on and continued to walk the rest of the way. I walked a total of 5.5 miles… not quite the 7 miles I was hoping for but my decision to not lather up in Body Glide came to haunt me and my inner thighs. Instead of hating every minute of my time outdoors, I enjoyed the walk. However, by the time I got home, I was in tears. I’ve fallen out of love with running. My six-year-long dream of running the Walt Disney World Marathon was quickly being flushed down the drain. I’d never again be able to call myself a “runner”, and I started to feel like I’ll never again feel the intense joy of finishing a long run or race. This would never happen again…

nyc 12

(Me finishing the NYC Half Marathon with a smile on my face)

 

And I’d never look like this again…

175pounds

(I’ve gained 19 pounds since this picture was taken)

 

I knew if I tweeted about my meltdown, I would certainly find someone else going through the same thing. Thankfully, Sana came to my rescue. She’s going through an injury as well and feeling quite bitter about it. We g-chatted, and she gave me so much to think about. She learned while travelling in Europe that they stay fit over there by starting and ending their days with a walk. She encouraged me to try new things while I give myself time to heal and learn to love running again. My brother also told me “no one can be that motivated all the time” referring to me wanting to train for something all the time. I need a break from running.

Therefore, I’ll be starting my days with a walk and ending my days with a (stationary) bike ride, swim, or yoga session. There will certainly be rest days, but I’m not scheduling them on specific days. I’ll take them when I need them.

Armed with a new sense of confidence about my new workout routine, I woke up before the alarm went off this morning at 6am. Normally, if I had been planning on a run, I would have hit snooze and bailed on the run altogether. But today, knowing all I had to do was walk, I woke up feeling motivated. I got out the door before the sun had come up and walked 3.4 miles around my neighborhood. It felt great!

Tonight, I rocked out 8.7 miles in 30 minutes on the stationary bike. I also ran in to the personal trainer at the Y, Daniel, who is competing in Disney’s Goofy Challenge. I go to him for a lot of my questions. I told him about my break from running, and he gave me the encouragement I needed to not completely give up on the WDW Marathon. He advised I lay off running until late October and kick it in to gear for 2 months (if I feel like running again).

I finally feel revitalized and ready to start something new!

If you’ve taken a break from running, what did you do instead?

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10 Responses to “A break from running”

  1. Caren September 20, 2010 at 9:03 pm #

    Hey Andrea! I’m sorry that you’ve fallen out of love with running but it sounds like you have a good attitude about it and a few ideas to help you continue living a healthy life. I had to take a week off recently due to some pain in my calf also, I have been feeling the need to “switch things up” a bit. I’ve started trying different classes at the Y, Body Pump, Zumba, Pilates, FIT, etc. I am really enjoying it and feeling like my workouts are improving a lot because of the switch up. Have you thought of trying some new stuff?

    Good luck with everything! I’m really excited to hear more about your move, it looks beautiful in CO!

  2. Sana September 20, 2010 at 10:07 pm #

    Wow, I thought the EXACT same thing today.” All I have to do is walk” and suddenly I ENJOYED my walk!

    There is something about the fall weather that makes me appreciate walking and being outdoors so much more.

    I am POSITIVE that those 19 lbs will melt right off 🙂

  3. mikala September 21, 2010 at 12:57 am #

    Hi! I’m mikala, I fairly new reader to your blog 🙂 I actually just took a long hiatus from running after a 1/2 marathon last october. Instead of running I used the elliptical and biked and enjoyed some yoga if I found a not too expensive class. For the past few months I’ve been trying to get back into it. It has been rough (I too had a knee issue). I’ve just been taking it super slowly and all is good so far! Listen to your body and listen to your mind…I had to learn to mellow out and if my body wanted a break, I had to give it what it wanted…but I think the trainer gave you excellent advise!

    • mikala September 21, 2010 at 12:57 am #

      By the way…I moved to CO for a bit and fell in love…I hope to make it back one day 🙂

  4. Lisa September 21, 2010 at 12:29 pm #

    I wish I had seen your Twitter comment. I’m in the same boat. I have an injury. I ran something epic and overused my IT Band…that means 6-8 weeks off from running. I’ve been so lost the last few weeks. I’m not even half way through my “break” but I am trying my best not lose it. 😦

  5. FruitFly September 23, 2010 at 5:35 pm #

    Awww. Your 6 year dream is so close to being a reality. I hope you re-find your love so you can achieve your dream next January! ºoº I’ll send some pixie dust your way!
    ~RR

  6. heidi September 26, 2010 at 4:44 pm #

    it’s funny because i’ve been going through this same debate with myself. i’ve run 4 marathons and am currently attempting the 9+1 program for the NYC marathon (next year!) but with that as my goal, I’ve put the breaks on running for now – lots of pain in my ITB and knee pains galore. I’ve been doing lots of other things – yoga, bootcamps, spinning – and i love it all and ocassionally i’ll still head out for a run but for the most part, for as much as i enjoy running it always feels like a chore so i’m giving myself a break.

    There’s nothing wrong with taking a break though – and i agree with your trainer try new things! Lots of them! 🙂 good luck with everything and you WILL run the WDW marathon 🙂 🙂

  7. Cassie September 28, 2010 at 11:47 am #

    I think we all get unmotivated sometimes and that you shouldn’t force yourself to do something you don’t love. Your new plans sounds great and I’m sure you’ll get back to a place where you’re comfortable with your weight. Good luck!

  8. Nickolas Hammill November 12, 2012 at 6:07 am #

    When you have knee pain, if find that topical capsaicin also works in relieving the pain and inflammation. :

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Trackbacks/Pingbacks

  1. Back in the game « Run, Eat, Date, Sleep - November 2, 2010

    […] Nov After a very terrible few months of dealing with plantar fasciitis and a bum knee and one last straw, I began a break from running on September 20th. I have sat on the couch for over a month. I really […]

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