I think, therefore I blog
RSS icon Email icon Home icon
  • Week 6 CIM Training

    Posted on September 30th, 2012 Michele Sun No comments

    Last week I entered my 6th week into CIM training, and my 2nd 20ml long run. This 16-week program I am following for CIM is put together by my friend Chris, which he incorporated my running capability and race goal into this tailored program. The program seemed to be a bit engineered and specific, but suits me well because I am a goal oriented person and I don’t deviate from plan. Basically I will be doing 1 x track workout, 1 x tempo run and 1x long run each week, and the weekend runs start at 13ml as base and increase very rapidly, with many 18ml and 20ml runs. It clearly is a program for someone has done several marathons and wants to improve her marathon time.
    Last Saturday’s 20ml took place in very scenery Monterey coast!! First I went to setup an aid-station around mile 7 with my friend in chilly morning, so our running buddies could refuel along the way. This is a self-supported group run, so wanted to make sure every runners stayed hydrated with energy to complete whatever mileages they plan to do. After the station was set, thanks to Michael, we drove to the meeting spot – Lover’s Point to gather with the rest of the group; I personally don’t like to waste too much time waiting and taking too many group pictures! So after couple shots, I took off with couple fast runners and I started at their pace which probably was my first mistake of the day.
    Mile 0, run started at Lover’s Point and continued about 3ml along the Sunset Blvd right by the beach, sun on my face and Pacific Ocean on my right shoulder 🙂
    Mile 3, I entered the famous 17 Mile Drive through Pacific Grove gate, running on feet saved me $9.75 entering this rich and fancy community 🙂
    Mile 5, Spanish Bay, gorgeous view of ocean made huge splashes on rocks, amazing view! Michael and I stopped for a minute or so to appreciate the ocean breathe and smell of ocean. We continued on to China Rock, Bird Rock, Spyglass Hills.
    Mile 6.5, stopped at the aid-station we had setup this morning, snacked some orange, pretzel and shared a banana with Michael; we also waited for runners that needed longer break, and I think this might be my second mistake because my body shut down after such long break.
    When I took off again my left calf tighten up immediately and from mile 8 to 10, the pain continued on. Hurt through Cypress Point and Ghost Tree, but I was able to maintain today’s target 9:30 pace
    Coming back the narrow and windy 17-mile Drive plus careless drivers taking pictures while driving slowed my pace down to 10:00, but at this point I cared about my safety more than the pace now. Left calf hurt so bad that I started limping, but I thought I should not take break or walk it off because I may never be able to continue if I had stopped.
    Last two miles hurt like hell, and I decided that I shall just run faster and run through the pain. So I pushed myself to 9:15 pace and just focused on finishing this 20ml long run.
    When I finally returned back to our car, despite the calf cramp, I actually felt great after this 20ml; my ankles, knees and ITB were not complaining! The only disappointment I had was missing my target pace, but for a run at 17-mile Drive I was happy to enjoy the open space and beautiful view. I can catch up with my pace at next week’s shorter 13 mile run. I can do my usual solo run and focus on running and speed! Also I may try salt tab on future long runs!
    For the rest of the day my leg was hurt and I thought it was from fatigue, so I massaged it with sport stick and went to bed early. Middle of the night I woke up from thirst and pain, and it alarmed me when I found the pain was unbearable when I put my left foot on the floor. My calf was swollen and turned into weird brownish-red color, and I could feel fluid under my skin when I touch my leg. I stayed awake and turning in my bed because of the pain.
    Sunday I met up with couple friends whom I had done the 20 miler with, for Dim Sum lunch, and they were surprised to see me limping into the restaurant. They found out I had muscle cramp at mile 8 and continued on with my 20 miler, they demanded “Why did you do that?” Well, for one I am a very stubborn person, and two I thought I could tough it up and run it off. Now I know I should not have run it off, instead should have stopped to stretch and walk it off.
    That afternoon I made an appointment with Paul at Living Room Acupuncture for Monday, and hoping he would tell me it’s no muscle tear or hamstring injury. I continued to apply ice-pack to my leg, and massage it with sport stick then put on my Zensa compression sleeve for the entire day.
    Monday morning leg was still very swollen, and at the acupuncture clinic Paul told me I had overused my leg and should have stop right away when cramp happened. He listened to my syndrome and inserted about 15 needles to my hand, feet, arms..etc. He told me to use hot compress at home and take time off from running.
    Ever since Paul fixed my knees problem last fall, I had come back to see him for ankles issues, ITB issue…and now calf. He half joked that “now we are treating you NEW  injury.” I have complete trust in Paul’s treatment, and I have no worry about taking time off from training. Because I know pain happened because I was careless, and from here I just need to be more humble, and more careful.
    That evening after work, I jumped into the pool and started my aqua running exercise. It’s very hard to stay at one place in the water, jogging in one place without moving forward is very challenge also — too boring. I had my iPad by the pool and was hoping the music would entertain me. But after 20min or so, I was getting really bored and the water was getting too cold, so I got out of water. Tue, Thur and Sat I skipped three runs, and instead I ran in the water one more time, and went to Bikram Yoga for the 90 mins yoga in heated room. The heat in the room warmed up muscle to prep for the sequence of movements and poses, really great workout to stretch all muscle. I think I will continue this even after recovery, just need to make time for this.
    Every runners experience injury, and this is not the first time I face injury, but I am experiencing something quite new. “Fear”. I woke up early in the morning and sensed my own fear; I knew I would recover in couple weeks, but I worry that I would lose the momentum I have had for the last six weeks, and I am afraid that once I get better and go out running again I may hurt myself again. The scary thought clouded my mind and I was so afraid.
    Thanks to running peers giving me advice based on their experience, and Max told me I still got two full months to CIM, and even if I don’t hit my target time at this race I still have Tokyo Marathon in Feb. Oh yes, both Max and I got into the Tokyo by lottery, so this time we both will be going to Tokyo running instead of him supporting me only. Thinking that CIM is not the last race I will ever run, I feel less stressed, and the thought of running Tokyo really excites me.
    There is life lesson everyday and you just need to recognize it and learn from it. From the injury this time I discovered that I may be strong in running distance, boredom, even icy river, and even I always claim to be a self-supported and independant solo runner, but I rely on friendship for morale support and keeping my perspective straight. Without friendship, just running alone can’t keep me sane.


    Leave a reply