Friday, January 21, 2011

Running Faster... Through the Paaaain

I'm not sure what's in the air these days, but tonight at Nike South Beach Run Club and last night at  Brickell Run Club, I was booking it. Not the 'wow-I'm-getting-into-shape-this-is-awesome' kind of fast run, but something more like 'uh-oh-i-got-caught-up-with-the-faster-group-and-now-i-can't-look-like-THAT-girl-that can't-keep-up-but-my-lungs-are-screaming-and-i-think-my-throat-is-closing-up'. It was awful.  Hopefully, there's some muscle building up under there and I can keep up that pace next week.  I met this guy, Aaron, before yesterday's run. He's about 3x my size. Not sure why I thought I could pace myself next to him. But when I saw that he was sweating profusely and breathing heavily, I figured we were on the same page and just pushing each other. Yeah! That's how we do it!

It's inevitable that you'll hit some sort of strained muscle, cramped organ or maybe even nausea if you run long or hard enough.  I was never worried about running through pain, until my mom told me that the worst injury a runner (or athlete for that matter) could suffer is a ruptured Achilles tendon. Do you want to look like this guy? Pay attention to these symptoms:
  • Swelling and severe pain towards the heel
  • Inability or severe pain when 'pushing off'
  • Difficulty placing your foot in a downward position
  • Inability to stand on your toes
So the majority of you will hopefully come no where near this experience. I just wanted to be dramatic. What a gross picture.

On a more more 'normal' note, let's pop over to one of my absolutely favorite resources for all things health related:  Last November, they published an article discussing how you actually CAN push through certain types of pain and it won't damage your body.  Even the medical director for the New York City Marathon says you can 'run through most pain without causing permanent damage'. Let's be smart about this though. If it's sharp, unsubsiding or changes your running style...slow down or walk. You aren't proving anything to anyone when you end up icing your knee on the sideline or are limping through work for the next two days. Build up, build up, build up.

Use your common sense to step above your Comfort Zone, but far below your Senseless and Stupid Acts zone.

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