Monday, December 12, 2011

It's been a while...

It's been almost two tumultuous months since I last posted anything, so I thought I'd post a 'quick' update.

Since my last post I've run a total of seven times.  Yup, seven.  That's it.  Three times in October, three times in November, and one time (today) so far in December.  There are several reasons (some call them excuses) for that; a general lack of motivation, interest, and feeling just generally crumby and tired a lot - kinda like the old days.  At the tail end of October I did something to my lower back - I hurt it.  I don't even know how I did it, but it was causing me severe pain and discomfort.  It was like someone was stabbing me in my lower back just to the left of my spine, and even directly into my spine at times.  Sleeping was a challenge and every move would send lightning into my back and wake me up.  It took me about 4 weeks, and lots of chiropractor visits, to get back to about 75% when I tried a couple of short runs.  To my surprise, the back didn't bother me much while I was running, but my pace and my HR had gone to pot.  I was gasping for air going about 4:00 slower than my normal pace with a HR about 20 BPM higher than normal.  What.  The.  Hell.  Doing a 4 miler was a HUGE challenge.  About a week after that discouraging outing I felt a 'pop' in my lower back over to the left side.  Not a bad 'pop', but a good 'pop'.  My back was suddenly about 95% with only a bit of residual muscle soreness that went away after a couple of days.  My chiropractor told me the he suspects that it's my SI Joint (sacroiliac joint).  Whatever it was, I was hugely relieved and figured I was back in business.  My motivation was low, and I'd put on a few pounds (OK, about 7), but figured I was good to get back at it (or at least try).  But, my fitness was still sucking and my legs were weak, weak, weak.  A short 3.5 mile run practically killed me, and recovery was slllllooooowwwww.  My muscles were so sore I could hardly walk for days.  What the heck has happened to me!?!?  And then, at the start of last week, I get some GI thing, that I still don't think I'm 100% recovered from even still.  To pile it on, on Saturday, BOOM!  My back!  Again!!!!  Motivation = 0%.  Discouragement = 100%.

Today I'd say my back is feeling about 80% - to my relief - and doesn't seem to be a total setback.  I feel like it's going to recover relatively quickly.  So, I decided to head out to the Bone Yard today.  My HR is totally out of control still and hit a high of 185, with an average in the high 160's.  Not good.  I was running through 4" - 8" of snow, at a super slow pace (15:00ish) but at great effort.  If there is any good from it, my legs didn't feel totally horrible.  I kept it to 3.5 miles in hopes that I'm not totally destroyed tomorrow and can head out and try it again.

During this whole two month layoff, I've been massively struggling with eating and maintaining a good diet.  Thanksgiving, and a plethora of birthdays in the family, have been big contributors to that.  I seem to do OK during the work week, but weekends just destroy me.  I've been perusing some different books lately, looking for motivation and inspiration - books like Wheat Belly by Dr. William Davis, The Paleo Diet for Athletes by Loren Cordain & Joe Friel, and some other Paleo / Primal books.  I'm trying to do the gluten/wheat free thing now, and leaning paleo, hoping it will make me feel better in general, and maybe boost my performance and recovery times.  But I'm struggling, in general, with everything...

I'm only 39.  I feel 79.  Should I really feel this lousy, tired, and broken down???