I realized yesterday that I have been focusing too much on what I can't do, instead of what I can, and how far I have come over the last 4 years. I have been down on myself because my fitness level isn't what it was 1-1/2 years ago when I did the 250k. Well, no shit. True, I have been having a lot of trouble with pain from injuries and arthritis, not to mention that nasty (and very painful) little bout with cellulitus that required 10 days of antibiotics. True, I've been having a lot of fatigue the last month or two that has made my motivation slip, I think part of this is residual from the infection and antibiotics. So this is me, pulling myself up by my boot straps, slapping myself upside the head, giving myself a good shake, and yelling, "Get over it!!" Yeah, it's like that.
I have been approaching a lot of my leg training as physical therapy in an attempt to be able to run again. This will continue, and get a bit more intense. I've been spending about 30 minutes after each swim (so, three days a week) doing leg work in the water. This has been great. I'm really trying to strengthen my hip abductors and pelvic girdle to give me more stability when I run and cycle. I have been cognizant of stretching in an attempt to loosen up my hips, to decrease my chances of more IT Band issues. I have to interject one thing here, cycling makes for tight hip flexors. I mean stiff, tight, old lady hip flexors. I also have a good, solid leg routine that I do 2-3 times a week of weights, strength training, body weight work, and plyometrics. I am adding to this routine with more stability work to try and better activate small muscles and kinetic chain. Because I don't workout enough, I need to add more. Really though, more dryland training is needed if I am ever going to be able to run at anything more than a hobble for 5K.
I am back in the running shoe market. Damn shoes. I have some that I really love, but with chronic foot pain I think I need to add more padding than my beloved minimal shoes offer. Especially on pavement. No, I don't plan on running on pavement much, but it is a necessary evil. Even on trails I think that increasing the cushioning in my shoes won't be a bad thing. Honestly, I can't even begin to tell you just how much my feet hurt. Getting older sucks. Now I know why old people move so stiff and slow, it is because everything hurts.
I am adding meditation to try and move past the aches and pains that are from a body well used, as well as continue a search for supplements, diet tweaks, and physical therapy to reduce the pain as much as I can. I need to be able to function, and a body that hurts doesn't want to train. You wouldn't believe the conversations I have with myself trying to convince me to work past the pain. No, I am not talking about injury pain, just the day to day discomfort that has increased considerably this year.
That is the current plan of attack. Basically keep doing what I am doing, but do more of it. Remind myself of what I can do and how far I have come, not what my limitations are.