So week 4 of my urbanathlon training started off very discouraging. While doing my Monday morning run, I began feeling a discomfort in my lower leg that gradually turned into pain by mile 4. Time limited me to only about 4 1/2 miles luckily that day so I gave it a little while to see if the pain would subside. It did not. It got worse. Unfortunately I couldn’t tell if the pain was muscular or something more serious. So with much resistance, I agreed to myself that I wouldn’t run for week 4 of my training. While I continued to do my TRX workouts, instead of running, I supplemented with both the elliptical and the Keiser indoor cycle.
After day 3 of no running, my leg began to feel better. While there was still some tenderness to the touch, I was able to walk on it pain free. However, I continued to follow my plan of no running. If there was a more serious underlying injury, I wanted to make sure I gave it plenty of rest before potentially reinjuring it again. I planned on beginning week 5 with the same plan.
This post ties in also to the very common occurrence of overtraining. To most who do not work in the fitness industry, it is not something the average weekend warrior fitness enthusiast sees very often. However, for those of us who spend our work week and personal time in the gym, it’s something we see in a startling overabundance. Overtraining, as defined by WebMD, usually occurs when the body does not have enough time to recover after the stress of intense training. As it’s defined, it does not seem to be something to be concerned about. However, the physiological and psychological effects of overtraining can be much more serious. Oftentimes those who are overtraining will work despite an injury and will continue to work through the pain of a serious injury. Pay attention to what your body is telling you. If there are aches and pains, rest. That will be your best friend. Furthermore, you may see a decrease in performance if you have reached overtraining.
Continuing the pattern of resting my hurting leg, I proceeded with my training in week 5 and utilizing the elliptical and cycle to do my cardio work. I continued to do my TRX workouts 3 times a week. I have seen quite the improvement in performance, endurance, strength, physique, and I have even dropped 5 lbs. since the start of my training. I’m very encouraged even though the pain in my leg could have ended the entire thing. I no longer have the pain in my leg, however, I think there could potentially be more harm than good if I jumped back into running too soon. So week 6 I continued on the same pattern and as I head into week 7 of my 8 week journey, I will keep up the same pace.
The next couple weeks will certainly be a challenge to make it through Christmas and New Years with the same momentum. I will continue to log my eating and keep it clean and lean with my food. This will most certainly help me when it comes to keeping my weight stable and my body feeling good.