Why is it taking all week to recover from my long run?
I'm training for the Edinburgh marathon and only started running a few months ago. I've had various aches and pains that I've manged to overcome with physio but now I'm finding that as my weekend training runs are getting longer it's taking me all week to recover from them. I ran 11 miles for the first time ten days ago and hurt so much afterwards I couldn't run for several days. I completed my first half marathon on Sunday but my legs still feel like they've been beaten and I'm not sure when I should try running again. I think I'm doing all the right things; stretching before and after running, eating and drinking plenty; so I'm not sure what the problem is. Am I just trying to do too much too soon?
If you only started running a few months ago, going from zero to half marathon in those few months will have been a big ask for your body. Stretching, running on forgiving surfaces, wearing appropriate shoes, making sure the pace isn't too fast, etc., are all sensible and will help to an extent, but it takes time for muscles to develop and adjust to training and I suspect that your body needs longer to adapt. It may be sensible to adopt a run/walk strategy to ease the strain on your muscles and joints.
You said it all in the first line of your post.
You're training for a marathon before you even checked to see if you were in fact a runner.
Like chosing Everest or K2 as a first climb.
You don't say what speed you're running at, Marie. If (for example) you're doing 11 miles at, 10:30 minutes a mile, then try slowing it down to 11:30 per mile. It can make a big difference.
Whatever speed you do, you shouldn't be feeling particularly out of breath whilst doing most of your runs - especially your longest ones. The common test is "could I hold a pretty normal conversation whilst running at this speed?" If you feel you couldn't - slow down.
Thanks. I'm trying to follow a beginner's training plan which calls for three easy runs of 3, 4 or 5 miles and one long run a week. The long run is typically increasing by about 2 miles each week and I am supposed to aim for 15 this sunday. Until recently I've been able to manage all mid week easy, low mileage runs and the long slow distance on Sunday but as the long run is increasing in distance I'm finding it hard to recover in time to carry on with my mid week training runs. I appreciate that my body might be taking a while to adapt but I'm worried about missing crucial training
Thanks RicF but I think I've earned the right to call myself a runner now! And Run Wales I'm running most of my miles under 9 minutes so maybe I need to slow up a little?
I will give that a go, thanks. Certainly don't have trouble talking while running at the pace I am but maybe the pace is proving a little too hard on my body.
I'm new to running this year as well Marie. Its' great isn't it!
Running is great because it's so accessible, but a marathon is a big old distance. If you're really, really struggling at half distance now, and you've only got a couple of months left to train, less a couple of weeks for a taper, do yourself a favour and pull out. Do it next year instead, or resign yourself to walking lots of it.I did my first half this weekend and I'm still in pain too, I can't imagine going from this to a full marathon until next year at the earliest. Unless you're really young and fit already, bodies just don't adapt quickly enough to achieve this without hurting yourself.
Did the half marathon in 2 hours and 3 minutes. It was a very hilly route so I'm wondering if that might be part of my problem - I'm okay going up hills but find it hard running down. My legs just want to brake! My last two long runs have both been a bit hilly so I'm hoping that running a relatively flat route next might help
I really don't want to give up on the marathon yet. I'm fine running the long distances, just need to find a way to recover quicker! Thanks for all the advice though
Thanks Cougie - I'll bear that in mind.
You have the answer. 2hr 3 min for the hilly half marathon. Let's say it was equivalent to 9:05 per mile if it had been flat.
But you're running at faster than your race-pace for an 11 mile run. No wonder you're knackered! I really think 10:30 to 11 minutes per mile for your long runs will sort you out. If you can re-hash your programme a bit, it might be an idea to stop short of the planned 15 miles this week. Maybe 13 or 14 at your new training pace.
There is a possibility that you'll find the new slower pace a bit difficult, and you might actually feel that you want to speed up. Try to avoid speeding up (unless you have to).. at least until you're past mile 10.
When it comes to race day, and your legs are fresh after the taper, you'll have you'll be able to go faster again... but that's another topic.
Run Wales, thanks for the advice. I will definitely try a slower pace and will probably cut back from 15 miles to 13 or 14 this Sunday. Fingers crossed!
You did say that you were running most of your miles at around 9 minute miles - I think for your longer runs you should be looking to slow the longer runs down - remember time on your feet, so perhaps you could adopt the odd walk break within the run making sure that you are drinking plenty of fluids not only on the day but in the days leading up to and after your longer runs - Good luck
Visit the official Runner's World page
Follow Runner's World on Twitter
Other Natmag-Rodale Sites
Run For Charity
About Runner's World
Runner's World is a publication of Hearst Magazines UK which is the trading name of The National Magazine Company Ltd, 72 Broadwick Street, London, W1F 9EP. Registered in England 112955. All rights reserved.
Website powered by: Immediate Media Company Ltd. | © Runner's World 2002-2014 |