Who knew that simply running one mile would be such a triumph? Sure, I've run one mile before and had it turn out really well, but this morning's one mile was a different kind of victory.
I ran the whole mile without feeling any pain whatsoever. It was the first time this has happened in almost three weeks.
Yesterday evening I obtained a new pair of shoes after deciding that my old shoes may be contributing to my ITBS. I'll be sorry to see them go; after all, they were the ones I wore for the Detroit Marathon, but at 450 miles their life cycle was nearing completion. My new Brooks Adrenaline 9s are actually men's shoes. Size 10. I have big feet, OK? The shoe guy felt that I would benefit from even more wiggle room in the toe box, and there were no women's Adrenalines bigger than size 11 (the size I've been wearing) so I've been bumped up to the status of a dude, as far as my feet are concerned. Actually, this opens up a whole new realm of possibilities for shoes. I can go with more "manly" color schemes (case in point: the new shoes) and I'm not limited strictly to the women's offerings. Sometimes it pays to have big boat feet.
I am now in the uncomfortable position of being an experienced runner with a new pair of startlingly white shoes. I can't help feeling sheepish and self-conscious, since my shoes scream "noobzilla!" while my legs scream "I can run 12 miles at once!" Unfortunately, my legs are covered up at this time of year, so I will have to get out there and pound some pavement and dirty the shoes up a little instead.
I decided not to break them in during the group run last night and instead hit the treadmill at the gym this morning for my triumphant one mile. I quit after that sole mile because I felt it was best if I didn't push my luck. Also, that way I could accurately say "I ran one mile without any pain!"
I did my stretches and strengthening exercises like a good little runner; they are becoming less annoying and more habitual. I'd put them on a par with flossing my teeth: I know it's good for me, but it's still a bit of a drag. Just like I doubt I will ever squeal "Oh boy, time to floss my teeth!" I probably won't be excited to do my stretches, either. However, now that I have experienced actual positive results from running through the routine every day, it will be even harder to neglect them because I know what the consequences will be.
I have 7 miles at race pace (8:30/mile) scheduled for tomorrow. I am feeling optimistic about being able to complete the run. I will have the additional benefit of running around my hometown near Cleveland as I am heading down there this afternoon to visit the family. A change of scenery is always welcome.
Starting Monday I will also be taking a weekly yoga class. I have been contemplating this for a long time and I'm glad I am finally going to do it. I think I need something to balance the running. It's all about finding inner peace, you know?