Monday, January 20, 2014

The importance of rest

Have you ever had ART done?  I did on Saturday morning by an awesome chiropractor who isn't remotely near me so I can't even go back regularly.  Adding to the awesome, he even direct billed my insurance company so I don't have to save the paperwork and submit on my own - which I rarely do.  I left his office feeling amazing.

You see, I have a desk job and had bad posture for about 15 years of that job.  It resulted in a twisted pelvis and a functional leg length difference.  These things weren't really a problem until I decided to start running.  Any kind of imbalance in your lower body will cause problems when you run and, as you can imagine, this particular imbalance can be rather harmful.

That afternoon, we decided to walk down to the frozen yogurt shop.  It's not a particularly far walk, but the icy sidewalks this time of year can make it somewhat hazardous.  And in an unexpected twist, I actually slipped on the ice and landed hard on my hip and elbow.

I'm quite certain this undid any good the ART did for me that morning.  The good news was my yogurt landed right side up so all was not lost.  I didn't even lose an almond or a piece of pineapple.

I did, however end up with some pretty good bruising and a need for some rest based on yesterday's run.

And that's the hard part for me.  I'm actually kind of angry at the homeowner who couldn't be bothered to even salt or sand his icy sidewalk.  Because as a runner, I don't like to rest.  From what I've seen in some online groups, this is pretty common among runners.

When we rest, we feel we aren't making progress.  Our mileage isn't increasing.  Our speed isn't increasing.  And we lose that wonderful feeling we get when we run - even if it is just some twisted sense of accomplishment after finishing a particularly difficult and painful run.

Which I felt on Sunday morning after walking and running my way through 2.5 miles on the treadmill with tight calves and a wonky stride and more anger than is really warranted toward a homeowner who couldn't be bothered to deal with the ice problem caused by the snow problem he ignored earlier in the season.

But the reality is that the fall is just helping me realize that my body was already calling for a rest.  It started in Vegas and I blamed it on all of the walking, but I started getting a shooting numbness into my left heel when walking up/down stairs, but at no other time.  Back in the gym, that continued into my running and the first ten to fifteen minutes had that shooting numbness (tingling?) at every step.

It probably had been resolved by the ART, but falling on that hip undid the good he did and it's questionable whether or not it would've been effective beyond a run or two.

Continuing to run is clearly not the answer.  I'll take a couple of days of active rest, although what the "active" part of that entails I don't know yet.  I'll see if I can get in for a massage or some more ART.

And in the meantime, I'm going to be frustrated and upset by my lack of running.  I'll be sad that my mileage for the week is low and I'll be bummed when I fall in my Fitbit group standings (I WAS IN SECOND PLACE BEFORE THIS!)

Who knew that resting could feel this awful even when I know it's something I need to do?

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