Scared Smart

As I am sitting here tired and happy after my biggest weekend of running in a long time, I am also in full fledge recovery mode.  I had such a great weekend of running, one that reminded me why I am training for another 50 miler, and why I love trail running so much.  It also reminded me that I really need to make sure that I am continuing to take care of these hard working legs so I can continue to increase my mileage and happily run exactly how I want to run. 

In one of my million per day text messages with Jojo, the idea of scared vs. smart came up.  I was telling her about my runs this weekend, how I am feeling great, and that I have an ART appointment tomorrow. 


As I continue to increase my running and feelings of confidence, I still occasionally get that scared feeling in the back of my mind.  I am scared that at any moment my IT band will act up and scream at me, bringing my running to a halt, even though it’s been months since that happened.  Because of that, I have been taking precautions day in and day out to try and keep those fears from becoming reality.

Assume long run recovery position…
photo 2 (7)

Icing… After every run, at least once, I ice my whole knee area and IT band.  I don’t know if this does anything at all, but I am convinced it has to be helping in some way.

photo 1 (7)

Rolling… Every night I roll with the foam roller and stick (I use both because I can get into different spots with each).  Every morning before I leave to run I do some sort of rolling.  It’s just become a habit in my daily routine, and the stick and foam roller are just part of our living room decor now.

Stretching & Yoga… I was going to yoga once a week and after a couple weeks off (partially because the teacher was on vacation), I am going back!  I am awful at stretching on my own and just need someone to make me do it.  I try to do some in addition to my rolling so it’s not just one day a week, but it doesn’t always happen.  Must be better.  Yoga also helps with strength and balance, both of which are very good things when it comes to running.

ART… I have been going to maintenance chiropractor appointments once a month for ART and general adjustments/check ups.  I want to make sure I stay on top of anything that might make my body mad and I personally feel this works best for me. 

Taking a step back and looking at my routine, I guess being scared has lead to some smart habits this time around.  I have always tried to be good about these things, but not as good as I am now.  That little nagging fear in the back of my mind has really changed how I go about taking care of myself.  Especially these days, when I would much rather sit on the couch or go to bed after a long day of running, working, cooking, taking care of the pets and doing chores, I also don’t want to take any risks with knowing that I should have been doing anything more so I make them happen. 

I guess being scared will continue to be a good thing, as long as it’s making me stay smart in my recovery and running.   

Does (or has) being scared also make you smart with recovery and running?

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5 Responses to Scared Smart

  1. shelly August 12, 2012 at 6:58 pm #

    You are being super smart. And that is sometimes a hard thing to do when you are a runner at heart.

    Today I was smart. I ran way too much at the beach. I ran barefoot and in the sand which is something I am not used to BUT I just loved doing it. So today with a cold/flu trying to get it’s claws in me and legs that felt like lead, I was smart and did a minimum run.

  2. Shauna @Pleasure, not Punishment August 12, 2012 at 7:58 pm #

    I think it’s GREAT to be proactive, especially if you’ve been sidelined before!

    I haven’t gotten injured yet (knock wood) and I think it’s because I’m paranoid and make sure that I ice, foam roll, stretch, etc. all as preventative measures.

    In fact, I’m icing my knee as I type this and get ready to watch BREAKING BAD!

  3. Marlene August 13, 2012 at 5:12 am #

    Keep doing what you’re doing to take care of those running legs. Sometimes a little fear does us good. :)

  4. Susan - Nurse on the Run August 13, 2012 at 8:58 am #

    I think we take it for granted when we’re fully healthy, so being scared smart is definitely a good thing. I’m terrified that my back pain is going to come back, so I’m trying to take things slow and stretch even though I never really did before. Prevention is SO important.

  5. Christine August 13, 2012 at 6:59 pm #

    Good job on being smart and proactive! I use biofreeze after each run, I can apply it and move on while still icing my legs.It works great!

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