I’ve been so busy with Ironman training that I haven’t had much time for blogging lately, but a lot has been going on with me. Unfortunately, it isn’t all positive. I’ll start with the not-so-fun stuff, so that I can get that out of the way and end on a brighter note.
The Bad News
The bad news is that I’m dealing with a bit of an injury issue and that is definitely weighing heavily on my mind as I’m only 17 days out from the IM.
You may remember that back in early spring, I really wanted to break 2:00 in the half marathon. I wasn’t successful in doing so in either of my two attempts, and although I didn’t go into a lot of detail at the time, I was struggling with a left hamstring injury. I just couldn’t seem to get it healthy, no matter what I did. It was extremely frustrating, particularly since I had made improving my strength and keeping up with foam rolling major goals for 2015 precisely to avoid injuries like this.
Later in the spring, I had a Retul bike fit after a friend suggested bad bike position may be causing or exacerbating the hamstring issue. The fitter noticed a pronounced leg length discrepancy that he thought was the cause of my hamstring woes. In his report, he said:
“Stephanie came in with . . . complaints on her left side. We found that she has a hip imbalance which is pulling her right hip up causing an approximate 10mm leg length difference. This is a lot and accounts for nearly all of the compensating injuries on her left side. She needs to see a good chiro and have 2-3 adjustments along with a couple of massages to get her hips back to normal.”
I did have a couple of really great sports massages over the course of the summer and thought I had resolved the issue. However, as soon as I started building up my running mileage again in preparation for the IM, the problem resurfaced.
This time, I ended up seeing a fabulous local massage therapist and active isolated stretching practitioner on the recommendation of two friends (if you are local and want his contact info, let me know!) and to make a long story short, he reached the same conclusion the bike fitter had reached. After just one visit, he concluded that the source of the problem was my SI joint, which was causing my hips to be misaligned, resulting in my left leg being functionally (not actually) longer than my right (the first problem described in this Running Times article). I’ve seen him twice now, with another appointment scheduled for next week, along with a chiropractor to work on my alignment. I’ll be seeing the chiropractor again tomorrow.
I’m trying not to panic, but this is really the last thing I need with the IM just around the corner. In addition to the worry and self-doubt this has caused, there is the considerable cost and time associated with frequent massage and chiropractic appointments. I’ve already felt guilty throughout the Ironman training process about the expense and spending so much time away from work and this is only heightening those feelings. I’m trying to remind myself that we are almost to the finish line, but it’s definitely weighing on mind.
The Good News
But, that’s enough on the bad stuff. The good news is that I’ve registered to run the LA Marathon in February!
I am off the charts excited about this race!
I’ve had running LA on my bucket list for several years now, after watching the race on TV, but really didn’t think it would materialize any time soon for several reasons, including the logistics/cost of racing on the other side of the country and training for a marathon through the winter months.
I had also resisted registering for any races of any kind or distance slated for after the IM because I really wanted to keep my options open for next year (e.g., I may decide to take a break from triathlon and focus on running races, or I may sign up for another IM, or I may decide to do something else totally new – I’m just not sure).
However, on the day LA Marathon registration opened, the stars aligned and my friend Ashley and I decided to register for the race and plan a girls weekend in LA! It was all very spur-of-the-moment, which I think added to the excitement because it’s so out of character for both of us.
I can’t wait to be reunited with this lady in L.A.!
If you aren’t familiar with the race, the course starts at Dodger Stadium and ends at the Santa Monica Pier. Just typing that makes me excited! I’ve only been to LA once – just for one day and many, many years ago – so I am really excited to go back and explore a new city with a dear friend. As an added bonus, the Olympic Marathon Trials are the day before the marathon, so we will get to spectate that race as well. I can’t imagine any more perfect motivation for the following day’s race!
I know Ashley and I are going to have a fabulous time and I can’t wait to get on that plane!