It's 11 days out from showtime and I'm going to be honest, I'm not feeling great. I know that generally happens during taper but I'm not talking about the typical tapermadness aches and pains. I'm talking about actual discomfort. I was worried that I might have gone a little too hard at Around the Bay and I can pretty much confirm that I did. Normally I bounce back relatively quickly if I'm smart with my post race recovery. I did what I normally do post long distance race: recovery drink, re-hydrate, gentle stretching, compression, ice bath, hot bath, more compression, proper stretching. The only thing I didn't do was book a massage. It took me a couple of days before I could walk up and down stairs properly. Even then my recovery run on the Tuesday post race was anything but easy. I stretched more and foam rolled. I was supposed to do mile repeats on the Thursday post race and I could barely get my speed up. My hamstrings and glutes were super tight. I went to hot yoga on the Friday thinking that would help. It didn't do as much as I hoped it would. I was really regretting not booking that post race massage. I had one scheduled for this coming Sunday and I figured that would be sufficient. I only have a limited amount of coverage per year and I don't want to blow through it before my summer of racing starts. But, looking back on it, I should have booked it. Shoulda coulda woulda. I'm now dealing with sciatic nerve pain down my left leg because my piriformis muscle is super tight. I had some ART work done on it yesterday and it seemed to help but then by the end of the day I was incredibly uncomfortable. It hurt more than it did last week. I went home and iced it, then had an epsom salts bath and took a Tylenol. I got on the treadmill at the gym this morning and managed to run 10 minutes at a very easy pace. I wasn't in pain but I was definitely uncomfortable. I figured it wasn't worth it to try and get my interval workout done. Realistically I've done all I can, now it's just about resting & recovery. The important thing is to get to the start line INJURY FREE. This will probably be the easiest taper I've ever had, ha ha.
A couple of months ago, I had registered for an 8km race that takes place this Saturday. I figured that I could do a nice 5km warm up, race the 8k and then do a 3km cool down to get my 16km in as I'm supposed to be running it at a faster pace. But given that the race is on a very hilly course, I'm thinking maybe it's not the wisest thing for me to do right now. I've been going over the pros and cons in my head for the last two days:
1) I've paid for it already
2) It's a good little speedwork session
3) I have a massage scheduled for the next day so whatever I do to my legs could get worked out.
4) I've done this race before and I really like it
1) It's a hilly course
2) It could make my glute / nerve pain worse
3) I'd be wasting my entry fee if I didn't race
4) I'd go harder than I actually need to because it's a race
On screen it's a tie but I think that Con #2 is my biggest concern. So, instead of racing, I think I'll don my expensive race shirt and do my long run on the flat waterfront trail by my house Saturday morning. I hate missing races but realistically this is not my A race. It's not even my B race, it's just a race. Period. It would have been race number 3 of my #13in2013 challenge but looks like that honor will fall to Boston, which isn't necessarily a bad thing. I have to remember to keep my eyes on the prize: finishing Boston feeling strong!
11 more days. Where did the time go?