Thursday, June 21, 2012

Race recaps, the return to racing

I was discharged from physical therapy last month, and to say I 'hit the ground running' would rather be an understatement.  Yes, I started running.  Yes, it hurt.  Yes, I'm going back to the therapist today to find out why I'm still not feeling the love.

On May 19th I did an 8K.  On May 24th I did a 3.5 mile race.  On May 26th I did the Soldier Field 10 Mile.  On June 3rd I did a 5K.  Finally, the weekend of June 8-9, I did the Ragnar Relay, completing about 20 miles in three legs.

I have changed my race schedule (note to self: update schedule on the blog!) due to my hip causing me troubles here and there.  I am comfortable as far as my endurance again, and am feeling good about my form.  My hip, however, is not happy with any of it.  Here is a summary of some of the madness I've put my body through in the past month.  Soldier Field and Ragnar will get their own entries, as they are quite a bit longer than these smaller races. 

 The 8K I did was an inaugural race in the town where I live, benefiting the school district.  I was able to get through the race just 4 minutes off the PR I set back in November.  This included a quick walk break near the end so I could pick just the right song to finish the race to.  Aside from that, I felt good throughout the race.  I was certainly slower than I was before my injury, but still felt OK.  Had I not gone out with an 8:40 first mile, I would have finished even stronger.

Next was my 3.5 mile race, which was the JPMorgan Chase Corporate Challenge.  This is a 3.5 mile road race held in Grant Park in Chicago.  I have done it for many years, with my PR being set last year at 29:10.  Of course, last year was super cold and this year was super hot.  The heat took its toll, but, also attracted many more runners than appeared last year when it was cold.  Plus, being open to all employees of local corporations and businesses, most of the crowd was not experienced runners or racers.  Etiquette was scarce, to say the least.  This made for a crowded, hot course.  I was not happy.  I felt really good, but, couldn't find a groove as I swerved around the throngs of walkers, slow joggers, and those who have no idea how to stay to the right when they're not keeping up with the swarm.  I was annoyed, to say the least.  I felt good at the finish and in the days that followed.  The hip was keeping up its end of the bargain.  Sore, but keeping up.

So, that's not so bad, is it?  A pretty mild return to racing after my injury and all the therapy.  Oh, wait.  There's more.  Much more.