The Secret To Treadmills

Wanna know the secret to a down right fantastic treadmill run?  Even when your gym is a thousand degrees?  Even when you forget your iPod and have nothing but the subtitles on the TV for entertainment?  Even when the only treadmill open is the one crammed into the corner and you keep knocking your elbow against the wall?

Take a week off to nurse an injury.  Trust me, running in any way, shape or form after being restricted to a stationary bike for seven days is pure bliss!

Today was amazing for a thousand different reasons and I left work with so much energy it was ridiculous.  The skies were a beautiful, tormented grey today –  threatening rain.  The trees, an unbelieveable green – the kind of green that makes you think you’ve woken up in Oz.  Every part of me wanted to be out in it – daring the skies to open up and drench me.   

We don’t always get what we want, but in this instance I am more than happy with what I got.  Coming off an injury I knew hitting the pavement wasn’t the best idea.  I haven’t run since last Tuesday (is that all? it seems like a month!) and my shins weren’t really improving.  I knew if I  was going to run at all it would be a test of sorts.  Either the pain that’s been plaguing me would ease up or it would get even worse.  Since resting and icing didn’t seem to be doing the trick, and I was growing more restless by the day, I was up for the gamble.  I wasn’t about to press my luck anymore than necessary though so, rather than heading out to enjoy the stunning outdoors, I sucked it up and headed for the gym.  It was dreadmill time.

I haven’t run on  a treadmill in months and months, but today was a huge, glorious success.  When I got there I was resigned to doing 10 minutes on the treadmill, then 10 on the Stairmaster, and then, depending on how the first round went, 10 more on the treadmill.  My first 10 minutes went great.  The was a small twinge in my left calf but it definitely felt more muscular than anything and I was ok with that.  After 10 minutes, I was still going strong so I bumped up the speed and logged another 20 minutes.  I completed a 5k in 27:54.  Not bad, not bad at all. 

My calf was burning a bit on the way home and when I walked in the door I saw why.  There was a huge knot in my calf muscle!  I could actually feel it when I lightly ran my hand down my leg.  Two guesses what my next move was….

If you guessed foam rolling, you would be correct!!  I spent some quality time with my foam roller and slowly eased that muscle into submission.  Three hours later, my legs are feeling better than they’ve felt for a week!  I hope I’m not jumping the gun on this one, but I dare say I’m on the mend! 

Thanks to everyone out there for all the encouragement and advice!!  I really don’t know what I would have done without all the stories from you guys about how you’d been there before.  It was really helpful to hear how you overcame all of your injuries – both from a mental and physical standpoint.  If this is truly is the tail-end of this ordeal, I know I lucked out in comparison.   


6 Responses to The Secret To Treadmills

  1. The Linz says:

    I hear you! After not running for almost a week last week, I too was happy to run anywhere. I am glad you are healing and getting those feets back to work! 🙂 And I REALLY need to get a foam roller. It sounds like a life saver.

  2. Gina says:

    Hello! I found you through Caitlin’s site. I ran the Frederick and Baltimore half last year too! I know exactly what you’re talking about. I had to stop running for 6 weeks last year because of an injury. I was so happy when I was able to run again, even if it was on the treadmill.

  3. BostonRunner says:

    Glad you got back to running!! My calves have been super tight lately, which was probably the cause of my mystery injury. I don’t usually mind the treadmill as long as I have an iPod and cover the time with a towel, but definitely any running after a break is good!

  4. James says:

    If you’re interested, Fleet feet Baltimore does evening runs at 6:00 on Tuesdays and Thursdays. I’ve gone several times lately. Many of the runners do run/walks. There are different groups for your pace. Most go for about 45 minutes. Very good for someone recovering from an injury. They are close to the intersection of 695 and Reisterstown road.

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