I know it’s been a while since my last blog update. The last several months have been crazy! Part of the craziness is working through some injuries that have made my marathon training more difficult.
Here’s a little background. In training for my first marathon in 2012, I learned that I had chronic compartment syndrome. At the time, I was able to avoid interrupting my training schedule through making some changes to my training that included physical therapy. For a while it seemed to work and I made it through my first marathon in May 2012! But last year it didn’t seem to work out as well, and the compartment syndrome hindered my running.
The only true fix for compartment syndrome is surgery – a fasciotomy. Obviously surgery is a big deal, so I put it off for a while. But I ended up having it in June and spent the summer recovering and rehabbing. I finally got back into the running, but must’ve done something wrong – like ramping up my mileage too fast or not doing the strength training I needed – because I got a case of shin splints. At first I tried running through them, which proved to be a mistake, as they only got worse. I did what was inevitably necessary. I took myself off the road got back into PT, which started to help – but it’s a slow and steady process.
Now PT/rehabbing isn’t easy. Besides not being able to run, which was frustrating, I worked hard to strengthen muscles that were weak and to prepare myself in general for the physical demands of running again. At the same time, I needed to keep up my cardiovascular endurance while avoiding certain activities, especially anything with impact. Though it was an arduous process, I’m glad to say (though I’m crossing my fingers!) that I’m back in action and feeling much better. I’m beginning to increase my mileage again, but this time having addressed the issues that were causing the shin splints, as well as continuing with the necessary strengthening and being very careful!
As I thought about all of this, I realized how much I’ve been through to get to where I am now training for the Boston Marathon. Marathons aren’t easy – or else everyone would do them! Oftentimes we think of the hard part being the long runs. But the hard parts can easily manifest themselves in other ways too, such as in dealing with injuries and working hard to get back on the road. I think that making it through these difficult parts of the process are what make the end result so rewarding – and I look forward to that happening in April.