So, I decided to take a month off of running post-marathon. I have been trying to stay away from running for a few reasons. (1) I don’t like to mess with injury, and although my knee finally feels better when walking, it’s still tender during certain yoga poses. (2) I wanted my cleanse to be relaxing and to inspire a new sort of stillness into my life. I wanted to relish not having to run just because my training schedule mandated it. (3) One of my goals during this cleanse (and this period of my life) is to delve into my yoga practice, and in my head this meant foregoing all running for yoga.
But today I was antsy. I was itching to run. Now that I’m getting over the nasty effects of toxins making their way out of my body, I have this boundless energy, and it needs to be used up. Since the marathon, I haven’t been sleeping well at night, and I know it’s because I’m not expending the energy I normally do during the day. This — 16 days — is the longest I’ve taken off running since 2008.
So today, I made my decision. I had to run. I had toted my yoga mat downtown and was going to head to a studio in Tribeca after work, but I had completely forgotten to bring yoga clothes. I took this as a sign. Go home. Put on running tights. Run.
Central Park at sunset is gorgeous. The temperature was 40 degrees, and the air was brisk. I was so content to back out on the path.
Happily, I haven’t lost much fitness over the past two weeks. My breathing was steady and measured, and my pacing felt pretty normal for me. I didn’t bring a GPS, but all I wanted to do was run for 20 minutes.
Unfortunately, about fifteen minutes into the run, my knee pain started to return. It was the same pain I felt during the marathon, and it progressed pretty rapidly. I pushed because it was only 5 more minutes, but by the end I would have been forced to stop anyway.
I’m glad I tested it. It was worth it to get out and run again; I miss it. I miss the release, physical and mental. But now I think I’ll be spending at least another week staying off the running path and waiting for my knee to heal.
How is the cleanse going otherwise? Fabulously. I feel great, and if my knee were back to normal, I feel as if I could run all day. I’m alert, and I’ve stopped craving caffeine and sugar. I am, however, dying for a glass of red wine. And I’m not even a wine person. Weird, right? But all in all, I’m loving my green smoothies and plant-based meals. Onward with the wellness journey.