I headed out yesterday with Garmin in tow planning to do my 8 on the 10th (not quite as cool, I know, but Friday was a busy day for me). I was excited to be able to use my Garmin to ensure that I ran exactly 8 miles for the “race”, and I hung out in the little park across from my building for a few minutes with my wrist held above my head, waiting to pick up the signal so I could start. After looking like a dork for 3 minutes and 22 seconds (the length of Tim McGraw’s “Where the Green Grass Grows”), I was finally ready to go. I headed out at a fairly sluggish pace – had been out drinking the night before until 4 AM, and so I was pretty tired when I woke up at 10 AM. I had set up my Garmin to automatically put splits at every mile, and I noticed something interesting: my pace was usually showing around 12-15 minutes/mile, yet every mile at the split it would announce a 9:25 time! Odd. I suppose I’ll just chalk it up to Garmin sucking in NYC though, because it worked just fine in San Francisco. You know you’re a crazy marathoner if you consider moving cities to one with better Garmin satellite connectivity.
The run was fairly uneventful – it wasn’t too hot, and it was overcast, but was slightly humid. I tried to think of things to write in my race report when I finished, but I realized I’d probably have a fairly boring report. So to spice things up, I decided to injure myself!
Just kidding – this was not on purpose. But at mile 6.85, I started feeling a cramp in my right knee. It honestly felt like a cramp, not an injury – as if I hadn’t been getting some nutrient from my diet. I paused Garmin and slowed to a walk, and also tried to shake my leg out, all to no avail. It wasn’t really painful, just slightly, and I probably could have run through it, but I know that with knees you don’t take any chances, so I walked the last mile home, resulting in a DNF for the race. On the bright side, my pace was much slower than I would have liked, so I was kind of glad not to have to compete with it 🙂 I figured that after I ate and rested up at home, maybe I’d go out again or hit the treadmill to finish my last two miles.
Lap 1 – 0:09:25
Lap 2 – 0:09:25
Lap 3 – 0:09:39
Lap 4 – 0:09:52
Lap 5 – 0:10:10
Lap 6 – 0:10:01
Lap 7 – 0:09:00 for 0.85 miles
But the question is… what’s wrong? I got home and had a few glasses of water (in case the alcohol had dehydrated me and that was the problem), as well as a plum and some vegetable soup. My knee felt better for a while, but then when out doing errands later, I was walking home and it got really bad – way worse than on my run. It still felt like a cramp rather than an injury, but this time it was enough to make me limp instead of walk normally. No chance of finishing the last two miles that I had skipped out on earlier – I just stayed home and tried to take it easy on my leg. The cramp is right around the knee and just below it – not above it, like I think ITB problems would be. I looked up some potential causes online, and dehydration as well as lack of potassium were listed, so I tried to bump up the water intake (but didn’t try that hard – I need to get on that today) and also threw a banana into my cereal this morning.
Anyone have any advice or thoughts on what this could be? My knee is still sore today, but it doesn’t feel as much like a cramp – now it feels like actual injury soreness, though not enough to affect my gait. I’m pretty worried though – I need it to get better for next weekend’s marathon!
This post was supposed to be a part of Nancy’s 8 on the 8th virtual race to celebrate the opening of the 2008 Summer Olympic Games. Sadly, I failed. Or rather my knee failed. That’s right, knee, I’m blaming you!