With my hip being a bitch -- which is getting better, albeit slowly -- I haven't been running nearly as much as I have in the past. It's odd to be training for a distance longer than a marathon, yet be running fewer miles than I would for marathon training. (Did that make sense? Meh.)
When I am not training for a specific race (which, uhm, is seldom at most), I run somewhere between 40-45 miles a week. During marathon training, that has been as high as 65 miles a week. During this 50k training, I've been hitting, uh, 25-35 miles a week. Waaaaaah.
The good news is that my hip has been feeling better. I'd call it mostly healed, but I'm still treading suuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuper cautiously. It doesn't outright HURT when I run like it did in October, November, & December which is good. Instead, I get these tiny twinges of feeling like something is still wacky. It doesn't suck, but it doesn't feel normal. I also am realizing that there are certain paces where the twinges are more severe than others. So, really, I am just playing an avoidance game at this point.
Aside from avoiding pain, what have I been doing to heal, you ask?
1.) I've been going to ART every 2 weeks. I've left with bruises, swelling, and some really addicting feelings of euphoria. It's helping. I attempt to stretch & foam roll, but this doesn't do much for me so I don't do it often.
3.) I'm not running many miles on pavement. This means a significant cutback on weekday miles. And I'm kind of alright with this while it's still generally dark before & after work.
4.) Most of my miles are on the weekends, when I'm running long and slow on trails. I know low-mileage isn't an ideal way to train for an ultra, but the time on my feet is better than nothing, the soft trails are good for my gimpy hip, & slowing down is also lovely. Plus, I get to see lots of pretty places that I wouldn't normally see when I'm just pounding out mile after mile as fast as I can on the road.
Right now I'm enjoying running outside my comfort zone in so many ways. I'm enjoying seeing what's beyond my immediate neighborhood; I'm enjoying slowing down, breathing in, and letting my body heal. I know I am a road runner through & through, but this as been a good experience so far, both for my hip and for my mind post-injury. When aiming for specific paces during training, I don't truly get to look around at all the beauty around me because I'm generally focused on my watch (and traffic).
The most I'm really looking out for now is being hit in the face by hawks.
It's been a great break from the marathon routine & in some ways I think this 50k could be perfect timing for recovery.
I admit there are times when I think an ultra could be a toss-up if anything sets me back in the gimpy-hip department, but for now I'm moving ahead as if I'll be running it. One day & one run at a time. I just know I will be excited to toe the start line if I make it to that point.