Thursday, October 27, 2016

2016 Hot Chocolate 15k: Pre-race thoughts

Hot Chocolate 15k 2015
I've only run four times in the past three weeks. After taking 11 days completely off from running, my first run post-marathon was a laborious and uncomfortable three miler which resulted in me to taking another four days off. My legs (especially above my knees) and my hips have been extremely tight and sore. I only have a few fleeting moments during my runs where I am not absolutely focusing of all of the micro tears and tightness in my muscles. So it's not an especially fun place to be right now, but on the bright side I can still run.

Last week, I figured all of my maladies would disappear by this week, so with one dose of optimism and another dose of habit - I decided to sign up for the Hot Chocolate 15k which takes place on Sunday. However, the condition of my legs has not improved at all since last week and I'm somewhat regretting my decision to pay to race on Sunday. I'm sure that 9.3 miles at race pace is too far and too fast considering it is only three weeks post-marathon. Typically my legs bounce back about two weeks post marathon, but I fear that this time around my recovery may take two months or longer.

If the state of my legs doesn't improve by the end of next week, I'm considering not signing up for another race again until my legs unwind and heal up. That would mean passing up running the Schaumburg Half and the Lincolnwood Turkey Trot both in November. That doesn't mean I won't run at all however. My self-designed recovery plan includes doing short runs five days a week with the sole goal of stretching and strengthening my legs. The speed and distance of those runs will be based on how I feel and not according to a plan, since I won't have the pressure of a race looming on the horizon.

With that said, I am going to see if I can show some restraint on Sunday and just have fun at the race instead of punishing my legs to go fast before they are completely healed. I love (most of) the Hot Chocolate course since it's primarily on downtown Chicago streets, and it's already paid for, so I really don't want to pass it up. If I can keep the pace relatively slow, I might not set back my recovery too much and also have a fun at the same time.

On a lighter note, I may have to dodge still-celebrating (or passed out) Cubs fans in the streets if the Cubs win on Saturday night. Let's hope that's the case!


  1. I'm sorry to hear your legs are fighting you! I was hoping to do the Schaumburg half but guess what? I have to work that day. Funny how life has a way of keeping me out of trouble. Sort of.

    Good luck and sending thoughts for a good race! It's only 9.3 miles...

    1. Sorry to hear you won't be able to do the Schaumburg Half. Oh well, maybe we'll run it again next year! Thanks! :)

  2. Hope your legs come around for you this weekend! Listen to your body :)

  3. Can't wait to hear how you did! One day post-marathon (for me) and I am questioning the idea of November races at the moment. We'll see in a week or two! Hope you had a good day!