Thursday, April 20, 2006

Drastic Measures

This morning, after an unusually sore recovery run, I did the unthinkable.

I took an ice bath.

I've heard about things like this, but never imagined doing it. I recall seeing a photo of an elite runner dumping ice into a hotel bathtub after a marathon to speed recovery. The implication - he was going to sit in that bath. Other fine running articles, coaches, and commentators have said this method of recovery shortens the time required for recovery and allows the athlete to get back to hard training. So there must be something in it. There is.


And cold? Man, that was cold. I must have been in a fog as I poured the ice into the cold water without aplomb. Plunk plunk splash. In went the ice. In went me.

I'm amazed I stayed in. Just shocking. But it must be done. I've got start taking measures that help me to recover. This is why my leg's been bothering me for too long of a period. Not enough / right kind of recovery. And I am certainly not going to help matters by running a marthon in 2 weeks - but shy of canceling the race, there's not much to be done.

I won't cancel. I think I'm quick enough even with the right quad issue to do well, and since the soreness abates when the leg warms up, I feel the distance won't be an issue. I have been on a major taper these last 2 weeks and have 2 weeks to go. This will be the longest taper for me. I have switched to shorter runs at good brisk paces to keep me fresh but to limit the amount of time on the leg. The only exception being the weekly long run which I truly enjoy - and the leg doesn't mind it too much since it's not coupled with blazing 10 milers midweek.

Last night I went out with foolish dreams of running some longer miles at MP - but with the soreness in the leg, I immediately changed the plan and ran 5.2. I sped up a little for turnover sake and finished in 34:02. Felt good to be running faster than I plan to do on marathon day. Hopefully, I can play it "smart" and relax the first 20 miles at a good brisk pace without pushing. Easier said then done. I've been reading several reports from Boston. Most had the same plan but somehow those first miles just get blistered. Positive splits for many - and I know what that's like!

Another thing I have decided on is too drop the watch again for this race. A lot of comments about Boston were the disappointment felt when the runners looked at their splits in the 2nd half. That's got to have an impact psychologically. The danger of running without a watch of course is *not running faster* to squeak beneath the wire of some time goal. But honestly, I have yet to finish and say "I could have run faster".

Training this week:

Mon. 2.6 miles with intervals
Wed. 5.2 miles tempo
Thu. 2.5 miles recovery
Fri. 2.6 miles with intervals (planned)
Sat. 20 miles long (planned)


Blogger Chad Austin said...

How do you do "2.6 miles with intervals?" That's not even enough time for me to get warmed up, let alone do intervals and a cooldown.

4/20/2006 1:24 PM  
Blogger Love2Run said...

Sounds like you're getting desperate there Andrew! This runner has no words of advice with aching quads as well. That ice bath sounds good ;-) Take care now.

4/21/2006 6:22 PM  
Blogger Thomas said...

I can only hope I will never feel so desperate for recovery that I have to submit myself to an ice bath. The thought alone makes me turn up the heating.

4/22/2006 12:30 PM  
Blogger D said...

Recovery probably would have come quicker for me in the past if I would have taken ice baths...I'm too chicken!

4/22/2006 2:12 PM  
Blogger Robb said...

I'm shriveling with the thought of an ice-bath. These are desperate times Andrew. I do, however, trust that it works!

You are blazing fast!

4/22/2006 10:19 PM  

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