Long Runs, Injuries, and Blueberries

>> Monday, August 16, 2010

I was lazy. Yeah. I didn't accomplish much of what I wanted to accomplish this weekend -- at all. However, I did manage to get in my 20 mile run on Sunday despite a steady rain that lasted from the minute I closed our back door until . . . well . . . mile 19. Oh, yeah. And those of you who follow us on Twitter know all about my recent injury scare. Last week, I dealt with excruciating foot pain. It's a long story, but after I ran my 17-miler in my Vibrams a couple weeks ago, I developed pain on the top of my right foot.

I don't blame this pain on the Vibrams. Instead, I blame it on my stupidity for running 45+ miles -- in a row over the course of a week and a half -- barefoot. I didn't think the "ease in" rule applied to me because everything felt so good while we were on our vacation. I backed off barefooting and slipped back into my cushy Gel Nimbus sneaks. Soon after, I developed this terrible, tendinitis-y pain below my left ankle. A couple crappy runs and days off later, I started to noticed it felt almost like my ankle had been jammed . . . and desperately needed to be popped back out.

I'm no expert, but I think the difference between Vibrams and the super-duper cushioning of the Gel Nimbus (look at the difference between the two shoes here) created this issue. One of the main differences is in where your feet first hit the ground. Heel to toe (standard running shoes) versus mid-foot (Vibrams). Of course, a mid-foot strike is more natural . . . and I got used to it. I won't go on and on and on because, really, I'm feeling better. But I spent a couple days icing, stretching, and cross-training. I also switched back to an old pair of Brooks I trained in for last year's marathon. They have less cushioning and are better worn in. Must have been what I needed because I'm like 98% better now!

Anyway, I finished a great 8-miler on Saturday at 8:13 pace. Then Sunday's run in 2:52 -- that's 8:49 pace! I'm definitely on target for a sub-4 hour marathon. Maybe even 3:50, if I'm lucky (fingers-crossed!).

This morning, I began the day with the anti-inflammatory power of blueberries. This smoothie not only tastes great, but it's perfect for the day after a super long run. My legs are thanking me.


What you'll need . . .
  • 1 cup frozen blueberries
  • 1 cup frozen peaches
  • 1 cup Greek yogurt
  • 10 raw almonds
  • Almond milk

Method . . .
  1. Combine all ingredients in blender and blend until well incorporated.
  2. Add almond milk to achieve your desired consistency. I go for a thicker smoothie (so I added only 1/4 cup or so), but you may like things a little more easy flowing!
We've received several questions about how we eat before/after our long runs. What we do in the day after we're done pounding the pavement. Basically: What does marathon training mean for our weekends? So, sometime very soon, we're going to give you a day-in-the-life post with all the gooey details of what our Sundays look like during peak training times.

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