Saturday, April 6, 2013

My Achilles Healed!

two little runners ~Kristen

Oh, by the way, I am running a MARATHON! The Mountains to Ocean Marathon in Ojai on May 26. I’m registered. I have hotels. I have days off of work. I have outfit possibilities. I have a friend flying in from St. Louis to possibly run the half. Or possibly to cheer me on. Or possibly sleep through the whole thing. The race starts at 6:00 a.m. Ouch!

So I began real marathon training in March (base building in January and February, check). I started out diving into the deep end with a 58 mile week – my highest mileage week ever. I was a bit over enthusiastic and ended up with Achilles pain during my first speed workout. Mistake!

I was in full research mode with the Achilles. The best article I found on Achilles injuries was from Strength Running. Apparently Achilles pain is due to tightness in the tendon/calf or to poor foot stability. I figured I was in the tightness camp and went after it with all kinds of foam rolling, tennis ball rolling, massage, and stretching. And I took a few days off of running. By the end of week 2, the Achilles was fine. Crisis averted!

The High Mileage Week (58 miles)
3/2 (Sa) – Easy but hilly in Del Mar and Torrey Pines. 10.5 miles @ 8:15.
3/3 (Su) – Long in Mission Bay. 14 miles @ 8:00 + 3 @ 7:20 (marathon pace (“M”))
3/4 (M) – Easy in Balboa Park. 7 miles @8:30.
3/5 (Tu) – Threshold on Embarcadero. 9.5 miles with 2 x 15 minutes @ 6:50 (1/2 marathon pace (“1/2M”))
3/6 (W) – Easy in Balboa Park. 7 miles @ 8:25.
            I took a tumble during this run. Belly flopped on a sidewalk I must have run on 100 times by now. But brushed off and kept going!
3/7 (Th) – Speed on treadmill. 10 miles with 12 x 0.25 @ 6:22 / 0.25 recoveries @ 9:15.
            Surprise! My Achilles started hurting at the end of this run. It continued to hurt after the run, even while walking around for the next few days.
3/8 (F) – Leg strength.

The Penalty Week (11.5)
3/9 (Sa) – Rest.
3/10 (Su) – Rest.
            Spent the weekend in the Palm Springs area attending the Indian Wells Tennis Tournament. So it was pretty easy to take this weekend off of running.
3/11 (M) – Rest.
3/12 (Tu) – 5 mile hike with my bro.
3/13 (W) – 12 miles on bike with bro through Mission Bay. And I “bricked” it with an easy 5 miler in Solana Beach @ 8:10.
3/14 (Th) – Easy in Balboa Park. 6.5 @ 8:25.
3/15 (F) – Leg strength.

Nadal is back!
Thanks to massive stretching and rolling efforts, I was back to regular training 3rd week of March, which was essentially a repeat of week 1 but a little less enthusiastic and no speed. 

My basic training strategy is 3 key workouts per week: (1) long, (2) M pace or 1/2M pace tempo, and (3) speed workout. Then 2 or 3 other easy running days, targeting 50-60 miles per week. Plus leg strength workout once a week. And daily core and yoga. 

Deja Vu Week (49.5 miles)
3/16 (Sa) – Easy in Solana Beach/Cardiff. 9 miles @ 8:00.
3/17 (Su) – Long in Point Loma. 15 miles @ 8:30 + 2 @ 7:20 (M).
3/18 (M) – Easy in Balboa Park. 6 @ 8:40.
3/19 (Tu) – Threshold on Embarcadero. 9.5 miles with 2 x 15 minutes @ 6:50 (1/2M)
3/20 (W) – Easy in Solana Beach. 5 miles @ 9:00.
3/21 (Th) – Leg strength. Easy 5 miles on treadmill with progression of last 2 @ 7:15.
3/22 (F) – Rest.

two little runners ~Kristen


  1. Good for you to fix your own "niggle" before it became a full-blown injury. I've fallen running in a place I run all the time, too - maybe we get too complacent and don't watch our step!

    1. I had a big uh-oh moment after the end of that speed workout. But the article was really comforting. Just lay off entirely for a few days, and you can take care of this one in days. I was really sorry to read about your injury! Hope you are back to running soon. :(