Thankfully the back issue did not continue past getting the new mattress. While sleeping on the old mattress I had some lingering issues as noted below but nothing significant.
Day 62, Monday, December 7, 2015
I woke feeling good but a bit stiff. My left calf was definitely tight. The run went fairly well. The tight calf was noticeable but did not affect my stride. I made sure to stretch, foam roll and wear the compression sleeve. My back felt fine up until I was walking around Costco. It felt a bit odd and stiff, especially on the right side. I’m keeping an eye on it but not obsessively.
Day 63, Tuesday, December 8, 2015
I woke feeling pretty normal, after a few minutes a little stiff. The stationary bike ride went well even though I wasn’t pushing as hard as I have in the past, at least at the start of the ride. I could feel some tightness in my left calf. Since this seems to be a frequent occurrence after tough races I’m going to add calf stretches into my daily routine and look for ways to strengthen my calf. For the ab work, I did not increase the weight of the medicine ball just in case. My back felt fine. I pushed as hard as I could. For the PT homework, I kept to regular bridges instead of single leg just in case. They definitely felt easier. On the side planks I definitely felt a little more unsteady on the right than the left. Afterwards I felt pretty good, some slight tightness in the back but nothing significant.
Day 64, Wednesday, December 9, 2015
I woke up feeling normal, although after a few minutes some stiffness returned. My back felt fine during the run. (The leg issues are nonexistent now.) I could maybe feel a little bit of stiffness/odd sensation during the run but nothing significant. My stride felt strong and even. The run went by quickly. Afterwards I still felt okay but throughout the morning I’ve had odd achey and uncomfortable sensations in my back/upper legs. It’s hard to describe because it’s definitely not the same as the pain or ache last week and depending on the situation, I don’t feel anything. I’m hoping that maybe these lingering sensations are due to the inadequate mattress that I’ll be sleeping on for just two more nights. It did get better and felt almost normal through most of the afternoon and evening.
Day 65, Thursday, December 10, 2015
This morning I woke up slightly creaky but mostly normal. The ride on the stationary bike went really well. I felt like pushing hard and got really far. (Well, as far as you can get on a machine with the word “stationary” in its title.) My back felt a little tight but nothing significant. Neither of us felt like doing the ab workout so I stuck with just the PT exercises. I felt really steady on the arm/leg extensions. For the bridges, I did all but 2 sets of 10 reps with both feet on the floor. I did try to step it up again on the last two sets. (1 with the left on the floor and 1 with the right) On the side planks I felt steadier than last time when I added the leg raise. For the walking lunges I stuck with two sets because I added a 5lb weight. Afterwards my back feels a little achey but nothing too bad.
Day 66, Friday, December 11, 2015
Today’s run was the best I have had in a very long time. I woke feeling good and that continued through the entire run. I felt strong and fit. my leg and back felt completely normal, strong even. The tempo portion was difficult, just the right speed. I had to walk for two minutes after to catch my breath and slow my heart rate before starting the cool down portion of the run. Afterwards I still feel really good, no stiffness whatsoever.
Day 67, Saturday, December 12, 2015
I slept really well on the new mattress. Friday night I decided that the last thing that I wanted to do Saturday morning was get up crazy early to try to cram the long run in before work. Thankfully, now that I am back to designing my own training plans again, (more on that to come in my year end/goals post) I could easily switch the long run to Sunday. There’s just something about getting to run while the sun’s up. Plus, the fog would have made visibility a bit on the dangerous side for that early in the morning.
Day 68, Sunday, December 13, 2015
Despite a morning of change in the start time this run went really well. I did not want to start running when it was time to get going. This probably helped motivate me to keep my pace up through the first 35ish minutes of the run which were run before the sun came up. In the past my pace has suffered during the “dark” portions but during this run I told myself that I was going to keep my pace up. I managed to keep my splits all within 10 seconds up until the last 30 minutes when I tried to increase the pace a little. Although the split for the first 10 minutes of that portion was actually a little slower than the mile before, it was on a hill and then the two mile splits after that got quite speedy. I felt strong throughout and had no odd issues.
This “long” run concludes the interim portion. Starting Monday (today) I will officially be training for the Tobacco Road Marathon. (Goals will be discussed in my year end/beginning post.)