One of my favorite bloggers, Amanda, has been having a Runners Tell All link-up the 21st of every month. Since getting back into running and training for my first 13.1 in a few years, it has been a perfect motivator and great place to share running related topics that I wouldn't normally share. Today's prompt is: Share a bad race or training experience and what you learned from it.
A few years ago I had this grand idea on attempting one half marathon a month, for 12 months. I even blogged about my attempt at said challenge (which I seemed to have deleted) in 2010. Since getting into running, the only thing that seemed to motivate me to run on a consistent basis was to train for a race. So, in an attempt to keep me motivated and running consistently, I decided it would be a good idea to run 12 half marathons in as many months.
However, what I thought would be motivating, was not. I wasn't training like I should have been and had taken some time off before I started this asinine idea so when I attempted a few long-ish runs I got injured pretty quickly. Around mile 3.5/4, the outside of my right knee would start to hurt. Like really hurt. Felt like if I took one more step it would just break in two. Being somewhat of a novice to running and never before really having any type of serious sports related injury, I feared the worse and thought my running "career" was over.
I explained to the husband where it was hurting and that is when he told me it was my IT Band, or the Iliotibial Band for those of you who are are more technical. The IT Band is a band that extends from the outside of your hip/butt stretching all the way down to the side of your knee. The pain can present itself anywhere between those two connecting points.
And this is when I was first introduced to what has become my running BFF, the foam roller. The foam roller is a firm cylindrical foam noodle-type thing that helps to massage those parts of your body that are hard to massage yourself. To work out your IT Band, lay the foam roller on the floor then lay down on your side on top of the roller, rolling up and down, making sure to only target between your hip and the outside of your knee. Then repeat on the otherside. If my explanation is hard to get (I am not great at explaining things), here is a video that shows you how.
When I hoped to continue with the 12 half marathons in one year plan, I rolled out twice a day and on each side for 2 minutes. Unfortunately, that didn't help me at the time so I had to accept that I wouldn't be able to complete the challenge at the time. I have, however, discovered a trick that works for me now. If I am going for a run that calls for 4 or more miles, I roll out each knee before the run. Knock on wood, I haven't had any serious pain since.
What is your worse training or race experience?
What type of running related injuries have you experienced?
Has your IT Band ever been an issue?
Have you heard of foam rolling before? If so, do you make time for it when training?
until next time