Exercise is important but if you forget the recovery then you will injure yourself and become unable to exercise at all. I want to talk about recovery because it is going to take a lot of work for me to keep training harder to run longer distances. But with more work comes more effort I need to put in on the recovery process. The fact that my foot is having problems showed me I needed to take some time and effort to fix it quickly so that I could get out there and run again sooner. I purchased two products this week to aid me in this, a n 18" foam roller and a hot/cold foot roller. The foam roller came with a 15 minute muscle massage routine DVD. I am going to try out that video tomorrow on my rest day.
I ran three days this week. Sadly, I didn't run last week except on the treadmill and elliptical, which in my mind really don't count as running but do count as exercise. I did some strength training but not as much as I need to. I ran two days at our park for five miles each. Today, I was supposed to have a 7.5 mile run. I was doing pretty well until I got to four miles. We went to a new park to run because it was a longer track and it has inclines. It also has a lot of downhill slopes that were very hard on my toes. It pushed my feet down into the tops of my shoes and caused shooting pain through my toes and the tops of my feet. I managed to get them to stop hurting for a short time and run another mile but in the end I only ran a little more than 5 miles. My teenage son hurt himself riding his new penny board and was in a lot of pain, too, so I used that as an excuse to stop and come home instead of running for another 45 minutes it would take to finish the 7.5 miles.
The incline is going to be a great help in training for our half marathon in August, there will be three miles of incline. But the slopes...ouch. It is my hope that over time I can build up my strength so that the slopes won't bother my toes anymore. If not, I will have to turn around when I get to those parts of the path instead of going all the way around the park. I am going to do my long runs each week out there on Saturdays. During the week I will keep running close to home.
When I got home from my run I had a fabulous bath in my jet tub. I spent two hours in the tub and it was so relaxing. I used the jets to massage every part of my feet including my ankles. I think that is going to be a weekly routine to help aid my recovery process since my long runs will be on the weekend. I am glad I figured out that it would be so beneficial. I will still use the foot roller. I am putting my feet up on pillows for a while in bed each night, too. After my bath I scrubbed the dead skin off my heals and put some extra emollient night cream on them and covered them with socks for the night. I massaged it into my feet to give them even more attention.
I love my new shoes. They felt great until the slopes started taking their toll. We will see how my feet do on Monday when there is just a normal trail to run on. It has been a very good week. I am hoping for many more weeks like this one.
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