Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Ask Coach Kelly

Since I have started having a post every now and then with more of a coaching theme, I've opened up the forum to questions.  I've received a couple already and here is the first from Colleen at Colleen's Triathlon Training Blog.  She sent me this question:

I have a sore foot and the doctor told me... 3 weeks ago that it was just bruised. He said not to run on it while it hurt or it wouldn't get better and that it would probably take a few weeks to get better. I took a few weeks off then it felt totally better so I ran my half marathon on the 11th, but man was it hard after taking that time off! I was so sore afterwards! My foot felt pretty good for the most part until I stopped, then it started hurting again. And it hurt again after my next few little recovery runs so I've decided to take the next few weeks off again. Trouble is I have my first tri (olympic) of the season on July 9th (2.5 weeks) and my A race (Half ironman) in 9 weeks. Is that even doable? I'm starting to get nervous that I won't even be able to run the 10k and  that I won't be able to get enough miles in to be ready for 13.1 in august. I'd just love to hear your thoughts on this. I've done a full but never a half ironman before. 

So, first let me say that I am not a doctor or a medical professional of any kind, so what I will say is from a coach's perspective not a medical perspective. I think we have all been in this position before.  We are registered for a race that we have been looking forward to, and BAM we get hurt.  It seems like you did the right thing by resting for a few weeks, which I assume means no running, but still keeping up with swimming and biking.  Without knowing all the details, it seems like the plan derailed a bit when your first big run back was the half-marathon.  That set you back a bit for sure, because racing is definitely not training!!  Then, even though it was hurting, you still did "a few" recovery runs.  Hmmm...You have to remember to listen to what your body is telling you even if it's not telling you what you want to hear!

My advice to you would be to do as your doctor says and not run until it feels better.  Once it is feeling better, ease back into your mileage slowly, and if your foot hurts, STOP!  In the meantime, you can do some deep water running, which is a great way to maintain run fitness when you are unable to be out on the roads.  Also, use this time to have a little cycle/swim block as well.

As far as the upcoming races, especially the one that is around the corner, a very wise doctor once said to me: "Don't sacrifice your entire season for one race."  Keep everything in perspective and remember that there are more races than the next one!  Turn your race into an aquabike, or defer your entry until next year and volunteer instead!  Keep up the pool running and the rest of your training, and when you get the green light from the doc to run, ease back in.  Make the decision on the half-ironman once you are running pain-free, and you will be much happier in the long run (literally)!  Good luck with the training and the healing!

If you have a question for me, please shoot me an email.

1 comment :

  1. Thanks so much for the good advice! These are things I should totally know by now, but it's always good to have someone tell me. My foot feels totally better now, but I will be very careful to ease back into it. That half marathon wasnt the smartest thing I've ever done, but it was fun!


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