I’m training for the Credit Union Cherry Blossom 10 Miler, which is now frightfully near in the future (the Race Day countdown says it’s only 48 days away). Jack Frost has not gotten the hint this year, and it’s cramping my training style. I’m not against training in the cold. In fact, there’s something extra-satisfying when your body warms itself from the running that I really prefer running in the cold to running in the heat. However, I don’t do precipitation. And there’s been no shortage of snow this year. So I’m indoors.
We are lucky enough to have a fancy treadmill. I have been using this fancy treadmill. One would think that this would be the perfect solution to all my problems. Yet over the last several workouts I have developed completely debilitating calf-cramps. We’re talking can-barely-move-totally-hobbled-need-assistance-to-even-get-off-the-treadmill calf-cramps. This has greatly reduced my ability to train. It’s not a “just need to train harder” kind of hurt. It’s worthwhile to push through that kind of hurt, because that is where you grow. It’s a “something is completely wrong” kind of hurt. It’s not productive to keep injuring yourself.
I think I have figured out the problem. I usually set the treadmill at a 2% incline, and over time instead of using my leg power to properly push my feet, I have instead been running with my toes fixed in an upward-pointing angle and landing mid-food. Completely wrong form, and over-extending my calves. I paid extra close attention to my form today, and although I corrected my form in the run itself (and have put it at 0% incline until my form is consistently good), the pain does not resolve immediately.
I’m fairly behind on my training program, but hope is not yet all lost. I’m doing the Intermediate Program, and at least I know that there are people on the Novice Program who are logging fewer miles but will still finish. I’m hopeful finishing is still in the cards for me. Also, the weather report says that things are supposed to warm up soon, so with any luck, I’ll be able to run outdoors soon, and use the treadmill intermittently.
As always, I’m looking for some new tunes for my running playlist. What’s been keeping you going lately?