It’s been awhile since I blogged last. I have intentionally been pretty quiet about my Ironman training because, for the most part, up until recently everything was going exactly as it should. Until last week, I didn’t have much to say about training because my miles were increasing, my body seemed to be adapting well, and I was enjoying the journey (for the most part…no amount of butt butter will make a 100 mile bike ride comfortable).
Last week, my training plan called for a 20 mile run. My weekly long runs have been around that distance all summer, so the distance shouldn’t have been a problem. On mile 3, I felt an old familiar pain on the right side of my leg. Two years ago when I was training for a marathon I spent some time in PT because of a painfully tight IT Band. On mile 5, I was convinced my IT Band was flaring up. Miles 6-10 I was in denial and thought I could keep running through the pain. I was stopping after every mile to stretch. Mile 11, I physically couldn’t run anymore and had to limp 2 miles back to where my car was parked. Considering my race is at the end of September, I started to panic. If you can’t run, you definitely can’t try and complete an Ironman. I made a few frantic calls to local PTs and have been seen twice so far. Earlier this week I had my first experience with cupping and have a dry needling schedule planned. For someone who hates needles, I am NOT looking forward to that. As long as it fixes my IT Band, and helps me get through the marathon next month, it will definitely be worth it.
In addition to my right IT Band screwing up my training, my left arm is currently out of commission. Tuesday, I went in for an appointment with my doctor. He told me that he had been reviewing my file and noticed I was missing 3 of the necessary vaccines I’m supposed to have since I don’t have a spleen anymore. After my surgery I had 4 shots before I was discharged from the hospital. I thought I didn’t need anymore shots until 2023. Evidently I needed those boosters and got 3 during my appointment in my left arm. The next morning, I felt like I had been hit with the flu (nauseous, light headed, cold sweats, overall achy) and couldn’t move my left arm. I was planning on swimming this morning, but realized there’s no point in going to the pool because I can’t lift my arm over my head. It takes me about 5 painful seconds to lift my arm, which means that swimming isn’t going to happen. Side note – Yes, I am forcing myself to move it, yes, I know this sounds wimpy, and NO, I can’t just swim through it (If I could I would be in the water right now instead of writing this blog).
I feel like the online presence of runners/triathletes/athletes is usually summarized by pictures of finish lines and medals. The triumphs are seen, but not the struggles that it took to get to the finish line. My ultimate goal is to find the finish line next month and earn the title of Ironman. However, right now I’m in the middle of a pretty discouraging week. I’m only 5 weeks away from a race I’ve been training for since the beginning of last year, and I can’t run or swim. School starts back Monday so my free time is dwindling. Here’s to hoping the rest of the month is better!