Five weekends ago I ran 10k which was demoralizing after having been off for a few weeks.
Four weekends ago I ran 12k which was pretty tough.
Three weekends ago I ran 14k which was tough but a little bit less so.
Two weekends ago I ran 15k and also went back to my much hillier route which meant added distance and difficulty. It felt surprisingly good and I was pumped. Runner girl was back!
This past Saturday I did the same 15k hilly route again. The hills and the first 10k went quite well. Then I turned into a nasty headwind for 3k which sapped my strength and slowed me down. I persevered and finished but was exhausted by the end...and for the rest of the afternoon. I also had some foot and shin pain which seemed a little odd because I had stretched and iced right after the run and hadn't experienced any problems up to that point.
Later that afternoon I entered my run into my online training program (Training Peaks) and I looked at how my mileage was adding up.
That's when the first of two things hit me.
Céline, you've been so focused on getting your running fitness back that you forgot all about recovery weeks.
I have been running for five weeks without a break - increasing the mileage every single week without slowing down to let my body recover.
So, ready or not, this week is an easy week - 5k runs in the morning before work and 10k on Saturday. C'est tout!
Then the second thing hit me as I limped around the house all afternoon.
How old are your running shoes anyway?
Because I had not been training for anything official since early September, I wasn't paying close attention to the mileage on my shoes. Thankfully, Training Peaks tracks that for me too. I did a little checkie-check and discovered that my 'new' shoes had actually been purchased in June (June!) and had 719k on them.
I usually trade them in at 500k to avoid injury.
How does one run an extra 200k without noticing?
My mathematical prediction?
Easy week + new shoes = an extra little bounce in my step.