Fall Running

I haven’t posted in awhile, so I thought it was probably time. I mentioned before that I was planning on seeing a chiropractor, and I have. I had an x-ray and it was determined I have a slight misalignment to my lower back, which can be corrected. Yay! So we started the process of fixing the issue. Well, unfortunately this hasn’t come without some additional issues.

For example, I’ve had some additional pain, which is normal and tends to dissipate after a day or so. This isn’t so bad. But after a couple weeks of sessions, my left knee, on the left side, had been aching off and on. This displeased me as I love to run. I was told that this is also normal during the adjustment period, but I wasn’t so sure it was worth it. My back felt fine, and still does.

Then I spoke with one of my dear running friends who told me her experience with a chiropractor and how she ‘will never go back’ as she feels it made things worse for her. She says that if she feels out of sorts or in any pain she just does some mindful stretching and even yoga and it helps.

So I was in a quandary…I didn’t want my knee to be negatively impacted by my chiropractor visits, but at the same time I did feel it was helping me overall with regard to my back. What’s a runner to do?! I continued going, but discussed the issue of my knee, to ensure the issue got addressed. I simply cannot have this knee issue because I run, and I simply cannot stop running. It’s not an option for me. For me, running regularly is like breathing, or eating. I need it…well maybe not like breathing or eating, but it definitely helps my well being. Those of you that run and are reading this will understand. 😉 Anyway, after discussing it with my chiropractor, he is mindful of the issue and has been addressing my knee as well. Now I’m feeling no issue there!

I recently ran a 76 mile relay race with 7 other women. This race really helped me gain some confidence in my racing capabilities! I ran 3 legs of the 19 leg course. My first leg was 3.4 miles and I finished in what I considered a disappointing 8:07 average pace…but it was better than my last year’s pace on the same course! The second leg I ran I just kept telling myself ‘this is a race, you are capable of racing and getting past the discomfort’ which totally helped! Mind over matter, right?

Then I felt myself kinda start to slow down…and a taller woman came up next to me and said ‘come on, we got this, you’re my pace’, and we began running together! I picked up my pace to stay with her, and the next thing I knew, I was ahead of her and never looked back! I finished that course with a 7:12 average pace in the last mile, and an overall average pace of 7:39 per mile! I was so pumped! I also knew I ‘wasn’t going to complete my final run quite so fast’, I told my teammates.

Then I ran my final run of the day, which included a team finish at the end so I knew I would need to slow it down at the end anyway so we could run in together. It was still faster than my first run of the day, but not as fast as I ran it last year. I was still pleased because I intentionally ran it slower, it wasn’t because I couldn’t run any faster. There is definitely a difference, and it’s a powerful thing when you realize as a runner that you can intentionally control your own outcome with regard to your race pace. It truly is a mental journey!

Realizing the power of my mind, I have some goals for next year that I believe I can achieve. I’m not going to get too in depth about it for now, but let’s just say I will be getting back into serious training mode and doing some things I have not yet done. In the meantime, I’m going to continue lifting weights, running, and going to my chiropractor-at least until the sessions are done!

Happy running everyone!

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