Success!?! I guess that's what you could call it. This past week/weekend was a busy one. Wed night we hosted a run with the KC Track club and I marked out an 8 mile run course and then cooked for the group of about 25. Thursday after work, I went out to a state park to scout out some trails for potential use in an adventure race I'll be designing the course for soon. Friday afternoon, I went out to the Lawrence River trails to help set up the transition area and mark the course for Saturday's duathlon. Saturday, Caleb and I did the duathlon and Sunday was the Brew to Brew 44 mile relay run from KC to Lawrence.
For the Brew to Brew, I had only planned to be a spectator/driver for our team, but one of our team members couldn't run and even though my running ability has been questionable at best lately, I agreed to attempt to do one of the remaining legs. My part of the course initially was leg 9 or the 10 leg relay. It was a 4.2 mile run on country gravel roads with a pretty stiff headwind.
I took it easy and allowed the still healing knee to warm up gradually and finished the 4.2 miles in 33 mins. Not a record breaking time, but just being able to do it without pain is a first for me in a few months. I was so happy to be feeling this good, that I kept going through the transition area and continued on to do leg 10 and finish up the run for our team. That last leg was on a river levee that is out in the open with no wind or sun protection and was 4.7 miles of mental torture. You can see where you're supposed to be going, but the levee curves around and regardless of your pace, it seems that you're barely making any progress. Other people may not feel this way, but it's tough for me mentally to push through that. With about a mile to go, the knee started to feel that familiar twinge and I backed off the pace significantly dropping my pace to about a 10 min mile. When I finished the 9 miles in 73 mins, I was feeling no pain and was so happy to have been able to run again. The two and a half months off running has caused quite a decline in my speed and endurance, but I still think my overall fitness is ok. I'll just have to put in some miles now to regain a base and go from there.
One thing that I think made a big difference is that I took 2 motrin about a half hour before I started running. Maybe drugs CAN help? They're certainly not the answer though.