Two weeks in and I have unsurprisingly logged my first semi-serious muscle strain. Although I’m pretty sure this is not a major setback, it did force me to skip a 3 mile training day. At least my problems are falling on the short run days…
Briefly: I have a ton of tightness in my right peroneus longus muscle, causing a slight limp and a weakened ankle. I definitely had to look up some leg diagrams to diagnose that one.
Typically, my injuries occur in the upper left leg, so the right calf was pretty unexpected. On Wednesday (post-5 miler) my lower leg just felt somewhat tired and weak, but by Thursday and Friday it was clear that the tight peroneus longus was the problem.
I think the culprit might be the change in my stride in order to keep my times between 8:45 and 9:00 per mile. Over the last 2 weeks, I’ve noticed that these runs have been working my calves more than normal. Although calf stretching is always a part of my pre/post run, sports medicine blogs taught me that peroneal tendon and connected muscle group need specialized, targeted stretching that I haven’t done.
For 2 days, I stretched, iced and foam rolled my leg in hopes of being ready for Saturday’s 9 mile run. Luckily the AM temps have been lower this week because I was running late due to the added stretch time and oversleeping (I got a nice 4:00a Saturday wakeup call from five fire engines outside my window). All said and done, I finished without any leg issues, so that was a huge relief!
While foam rolling on Friday morning, I started thinking about the state of my sneakers and if they played any role in the injury. My first pair of sneakers were incorrectly fitted and resulted in a trip to the orthopedic surgeon only 50 miles in. I was re-evaluated and given Mizuno Wave Inspire 9’s, which properly support my moderate overpronation. I’m a big fan of these sneakers, but I also don’t have anything to really compare them to.
Throughout our training, we’ll be running around 440 miles. That seems like a lot to put on my 240 mile-old Inspires. Although the internet tells me that people have run their Inspires into the 600-800 mile range, I’m increasingly apprehensive about injuries sustained by training in “dead” sneakers. As a beginner, I don’t really know when to retire my current pair and if I should risk trying a different brand. I’m still in the beginning stages of mapping out my sneaker use plan, but I will be sure to post any updates or information regarding swapping sneakers while marathon training.
On to week 3!