Before I get started writing about my latest half marathon experience, I want to ask all of you, do you have any endurance events you are training for? If so, what is the event?
Ok. This morning I completed my second half marathon.
As I mentioned over in the Lounge on this thread, Good Luck to Spiral
, I took about a week break from running due to IT band/knee issues on my left side.
I was hoping that the rest (a) wouldn't cause me to lose much in the way of conditioning and that (b) as a result of the rest I would be able to get through most of the race without any pain in my left knee.
As it turns out, I think both (a) and (b) turned out to be wrong assumptions. I will say that the weather was a little hotter, in the high 60s, whereas it was in the low 40s in the Carmel half marathon. But it was much, more humid, about 90 percent to 95 percent humidity.
It was very crowded, being the largest half marathon in the United States, about 35,000 runners and walkers. If you wanted to run at a steady pace in this race, it would take concentration, because you would always have to be weaving around people.
In some races it is crowded for the first few miles. In this race it was crowded for the entire 13.1 miles.
About 3 miles in, I thought I might do okay. My left knee wasn't hurting (yet). But I wasn't really fired up about running faster than 9 minute miles.
Then the knee pain kicked in and the fatigue kicked in. So, for the first 7 or so miles, I ran at about a 9:30 min/mile pace, or thereabouts. I probably ran a 11:45 min/mile pace on average for the last 6 or so miles.
My official time was 2:16:20.
Overall, as I look back at the last 6 months of training I have done, I am a little disappointed, but not too much. For the most part, I think I have gained valuable experience as a half marathon runner.
I know that I trained too vigorously. I just put too many demands on my body. So, I ended up with some impressing training runs. But my two half marathons performances suffered, I believe, as a result of the injury/fatigue caused by the overly demanding training. I will know better next time that sometimes "less is more" when it comes to training for a half marathon.
I will, however, be taking at least a month and possibly as long as three months off of running. A complete break.
Because I want this left IT band/knee issue to be completely gone before I get back into training for another half marathon. And since the pain is not present when I am walking, since the pain is often not present during the first couple miles of my runs, since 7 days of rest wasn't enough to "cure" this problem, I think I need more extended time off.
I can't wait to start training for another half marathon. But there's no point in being in denial. My left knee needs a rest. If it isn't rested, I won't be able to accomplish my goals which are (a) have fun running and (b) get faster at the half marathon.
I'm a running junkie. But I haven't completely lost my mind.