Saturday, April 06, 2013

The [Almost] Shuffle

I've ran the Shamrock Shuffle on and off for the last eight years. Off years were when the Shuffle conflicted with a vacation or worse, I was injured.

I was prepared to run it again this year, remembering last years warm temperatures and my standing 8k PR. I'm more than ready to say goodbye to winter weather right about now.

Wednesday, I joined a fun run from the new Universal Sole location in Lakeshore East. The 3.5 mile loop took us down to run right on the lake's edge as opposed to the bike path closer to Lake Shore Drive. As I ran that night, I thought about how I never think to run down right on the water like that. Maybe I'd start mixing it up a bit.

The following day, I met a friend for a lunch run date. I met her about a mile in to my run and we headed south. Again, we went along the water's edge. The weather was so beautiful I had tied my coat around my waist. We were in a conversation about our Easter weekends when it happened. All in slow motion. My right ankle buckled and I began to lose my balance - Oh no. This is happening. Again.

We regrouped in the grass and I assessed the sprain. Could I walk it off? I thought so. We continued south for a few minutes, then picked up running again. We ran another 6 miles together.

By the time I returned to the office, my ankle was getting stiff. Unfortunately, I know this process all too well. So much so that I have provisions at work to RICE (rest, ice, elevate, compress).

Though I was disappointed in my klutzy performance, I hoped that this little fall wouldn't sideline my Shuffle plans. After all, it was only Thursday.

Fast forward to tonight. I decided just this evening, after reading more online, taking to my massage therapist and trying to think of the bigger training picture, that I won't run the race tomorrow morning. Though my ankle seems to be on the mend, a week of no running is probably the best remedy to ensure it has a chance to heal.

Dave tried to console me by saying, "it's just the Shuffle. It's not the (Chicago) marathon or Marine Corps (marathon)." He's right. The Shuffle is not my 'A' race this year. But I remember not so long ago when it was. I think it's a great event that gives many runners a big city race feel.

The most difficult part about not running tomorrow is that I am forfeiting my commitment to run the race. That's unlike me. No matter what race I've signed up for over the years, I've always been there on race day. Ok, there was one Soldier Field 10 I had to pass on due to an injury, but its the only race I can think of. Tomorrow will be two.

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