The Bad News
So I went for a run today, down by a green belt that has a nice bike/walking path running through it. On my way home, I didn't lift my foot high enough and stubbed my toe and tripped over a raised sidewalk panel. On the way down, I remember making a noise like "WULLLAAG!" I then landed kind of awkwardly on my knee and hand. Here are a few pictures:
(The Dirt Makes It Look Worse Than It Is)
I ran home the remaining quarter of a mile and didn't notice the knee until I got to my door. The cleaning process was not very fun. Here's a pic after several cycles of running water, soap, and hydrogen peroxide:
(Clean Enough To Eat Off Of. Yum!)
I made a trip to Wal Mart to get giant bandaids and neosporin. Not sure how long this is going to take to heal.
The Good News
The good news is that the preceding 3 miles of my run were pretty awesome. The path I ran on goes through a green belt so there was a lot of interesting stuff to look at. I ran by a bunch of joggers and walkers. I even had a short conversation with a young kid on a bike (with training wheels, so we kept each others pace for a while). By conversation, I mean that he reminded me to watch out for glass for about a minute. I'm pretty sure that his dad said something to him when I ran by them a few minutes earlier.
The other bit of good news is that I've now beaten my distance record by about a third of a mile, up to 3.33 miles. And no pain in my feet or ankles!
A Positive Change
I've been switching up my normal weekly running routine. Before the change, I was trying to run the same distance at about the same pace every day. The problem is that it limited the progress I was making. Running 1.5 - 2 miles every day takes its toll. I wasn't giving my feet time to recover from the previous days' runs before asking them to do it again. I ended up with a bruised tendon on my left foot, and it limited the maximum distance I was able to achieve on any given run to about 2 miles.
After letting the tendon heal (by sitting at home for a week... boo), I decided to make a change that corresponds to my resistance training schedule. Basically, on M-W-F (resistance training days), I run a mile. On T-Th I run between 1.5 and 2 miles. On Saturday or Sunday I go as far as I can before my feet (or any other part of my body) tell me to stop, and on the other day I rest.
After 3 weeks, it's worked out pretty great. During the first week, I managed to get up to 3 miles for my long run. Last week was Thanksgiving, but I still managed to get 4.5 miles in. And this week, despite only running 4 days, I have run almost 8 miles, and 3.3 on my long run.
It's been cold and my weekday runs are at night, so that is another factor in why I made the change to do shorter distances throughout the week. But so far, the cold hasn't prevented me from going barefoot. Although if I hadn't been able to gradually transition into the cold weather, I'm not sure if I would have stuck with it all the way until now.
Despite the minor setbacks, I feel like I'm on the right track. I probably won't reach my goal of 5 miles by the end of the year, but I've already run further than I've ever gone before. And I don't feel like there is anything holding me back to go and faster and longer.