Sorry about the slack updating, but things have been a little hectic lately. (Which has made attempts to find time to train during the week a fairly interesting/frustrating challenge...)
Anywho, in nutshell, here's where things stand as of this week:
(1) You can't spell pain in the ass without "IT": The pain in my knee and ankle turned out to be the result of a poor IT band, which is the muscle that stretches from your hip down your leg to the knee.
Mine has always been weak - I can actually hear my knee pop when I walk sometimes - so the workouts were stressing out my knee and my ankle tried to compensate. Et voila! Leg pain bad enough to make the walk down the stairs as challenging as my long runs. I made it to a walk-in sports clinic and the good people at Towson Sports Medicine gave me some stretches and exercises that have helped build up strength in my band, which lessens the pain. They also recommended a knee brace, which I have yet to find and pick up.
(2) Ice baths: They're not for the weak: Ok, I actually wouldn't know a thing about that, since I have yet to take an ice bath. But it looks like it's only a matter of time before I need to grow a pair and take one. Since my longest run will be this Saturday (13.1miles/21km), I have a feeling I'll be able to report on the experience by Sunday. As my friend Suz tells me, your heart only stops for the first few seconds.
(3) 13.1 miles is, amazingly, only half-way there: This Saturday Baltimore hosts the 2009 Baltimore Running Festival. Since I have yet to run with a big group, this seemed like a good opportunity to see what it's like to take part in an actual running event. So yours truly will set reason aside and run the half-marathon around the neighborhoods of Fells Point, Canton, East Baltimore, Wyman Park, Homewood, Bolton Hill/Mt. Vernon, and the Inner Harbor. I've been told that the Baltimore marathon trail is one of the hardest IN THE WORLD due to it's many, many high angled hills. Of course, I didn't discover this until after I had paid the $90 registration fee. Awesome.
I pick up my registration packet tomorrow (the 8th), which includes my number and this nifty digital tag that records my time as I run. I'll be sure to post photos of the event. It'll also be on tv and online (www.wbaltv.com). Just look for the little brown-ish woman who looks like she's about to fall over :)
(4) Almost to the goal! So I am half-way to personal goal (and more than halfway to the minimum amount I need to raise) for the January event for LLS. PLEASE, PLEASE, PLEASE DONATE if you haven't had a chance yet! Any amount is greatly appreciated and will help me and Team in Training raise awareness and fund research to combat cancer. Just click here (http://pages.teamintraining.org/md/wdw10/adjwiley) or contact me for details. (Donations, of course, are completely tax deductible.)
The half is this Saturday, October 10th, staring at 9:45am. I'll let you know how it goes.
Wish me luck!