Back to the drawing board
Here we go again - after getting my hamstring healed up during our Utah trip and after, I though I was in the clear to resume intensity and building out my long runs. I got back on the track and started doing some of my speed workouts on the flat trails of Monument Valley park. I was missing the forest for the trees though - with all the little races packed in January and February, I was working too hard to try to reclaim by speed. I should know by know that the runner I was in 2005 no longer exists and trying to find her again is near futile. But I still think I should be able to run as far as fast as I used to too. Everything was going well and I was turning in some good workouts over the past month. I was starting to feel more like the runner I used to be instead of the jogging cyclists I am now. And then Monday, five minutes into my last interval, the hamstring twinged. Nothing major - but noticeable. I attributed to the cold. It was a little nippy and I'd opted to wear shorts. Maybe a mistake as my legs were cold and it took me a little finger going. I could feel the tightness the rest of the day and in the run the following day. But it didn't affect my running - just a little tighter then usual. So I didn't pay much attention to the twinge. I knew it was there - could feel it through most of my activities.
And the came my Christmas Day long run - hoping for 15 miles, nice and easy. Nick started with me, planning on doing 3. I was feeling good, much better then in past days. The pace felt easy. But just shy of 1.5 miles in, my hamstring spasmed. It was worse then the gradual tightening that has happened before. It was a sudden spasming that felt like a loose string going taut. And I was done. There was no way I was going any more then it was going to take me to get back home. Walking was fine, but trying to run? Not so much. I couldn't straighten out my leg for a full stride at all. Pain in the same spot as before, but more intense. I could see my entire January and Feburary falling apart.
So it's back to the drawing board for my running. I need to cut the mileage down for a few weeks and eliminate all the intensity for at least a month. And when I start feeling better, I need to behave. Even if I feel like I can run fast, keep it chill. It's not going to be easy - I was getting amped up for two very busy months of racing. I'm still going to do the races, but throwing expectations out the door. I think they will have to be my intensity. The expection management will be the hardest part. Still trying to recapture the runner I was, with the expectations that I had whenever I lined up does not fit with me babying my hamstring like it needs. Showing up with a false expection of where I am will only lead to further injury. It's what I have to do if I want to see my entire season through to completion.