Sunday, May 12, 2013

(Down) Week(s) in Review

4/29 - 5/5:
68 miles
14-15 mile long run
1 day off
3 days sick

5/6 - 5/12
45 miles
14-mile long run
3 days off
5 days sick 
5 days with pinkeye

As the above stats indicate, the past few weeks have been pretty disastrous as pertains to my health, fitness and overall state of well-being. I caught the cold and/or virus from hell shortly after returning from my amazing trip and felt so terrible on Friday that I actually took my first day off from running since Nemo in early February. I salvaged a few decent runs on the weekend, including a hard solo 20k around the Neck on a picture perfect Saturday afternoon and a fun 1:45 with Carly in Cambridge on Sunday, but by Monday morning I'd coughed myself hoarse and was reduced to pantomiming or acting out most of my sentences. It didn't help that this was the busiest week at work in quite some time, with 10+ hour planning sessions each day, so when I woke up with my left eye swollen shut on Wednesday I just assumed my illness was invading more innocent body parts. That notion was dispelled 36 hours later when my bosses all but pushed me out the door to the minute clinic, where I discovered that I had somehow managed to contract conjunctivitis (i.e., pinkeye) in both of my eyes. Was this related to being sick? No, the nurse practitioner told me as she failed to mask her revulsion at my monstrous visage, just a delightful bacterial coincidence. 

Oh, and did I mention that something is going on with my shin? Apparently I've got some burgeoning soleus issue that has reduced me to limping down the stairs and uncomfortably shuffling (even more than usual) through morning runs. I was certain that three days off earlier this week would nip this in the bud--the irony that I'm on the verge of celebrating one year of injury-free running is not lost on me--but unfortunately it still remains an increasingly major inconvenience. If I didn't have the US Half-Marathon Championships looming on the relatively near horizon I would shut things down for a full week, but that's a luxury I simply don't have right now. Instead I'm strengthening and sticking and epsom salting and compression socking and doing just about everything I can think of to manage the issue. As it stands, I've done nothing faster than a jog since my race in Italy, so I need to get this under control enough to attempt a workout or two next week. Fingers (and toes) crossed for a return to good health sooner than later!

To my left, Marblehead harbor view from the causeway leading to the Neck. No filter!

To my right, ocean view. If you look closely you can see the Boston skyline in the background.

If there's one silver lining to this shitstorm of a week, it was the opportunity to cheer on the three fastest ladies I know at the New Balance Boston Twilight Meet on Saturday evening. Abbey D'Agostino, my NCAA champ training buddy from earlier this winter, crushed the women's 800, while Kim Smith and Molly Huddle mixed it up with the boys (and beat a good number of them) in the 5k and 3k respectively. It was great to catch up with each of them on their cooldown jogs and then to enjoy a highly meat-intensive dinner with Kim and Molly after the meet. Hoping some of their speed will rub off on me (as opposed to, you know, my pinkeye infecting them). If nothing else, their performances have definitively motivated me to put my life back together and get in shape!

Kim on her way to a 15:02 world-leading 5k

Molly tucked in with the boys en route to an 8:57 3k