Friday, May 28, 2010

No Risk No Reward

Do you have a talent? I haz talent. I have the unique ability to make my back hurt. It comes from bad posture. Besides not getting ANY exercise sitting in an office chair all day, I have learned if you sit wrong, you can hurt your back.

Yea, I know. Don't do that...

By the time I realized that my body was sending me signals, it was too late. The swim in the pool that night was fine, but my bed has a way of aggravating it, and the chair I work in from home? Not so good either.

I spent all day worrying about. Cooked dinner early. Feed the boyz and sent Dee Dee off to work with dinner in tow. Procrastinated a bit and finally got out the door at 6:30-ish PM for my run. I know it probably wasn't the smartest thing to do, but I have a reputation for being bullheaded, and besides. I have never allowed myself to be "injured", and I'm not going to eff it up now by not listening to my body.

Well, said body started complaining the minute I started running. At first, it was a sharp little pain in my lower left back. I immediately decided on a run one minute walk one minute strategy. Ignoring pace seemed like a good idea too.

After run/walking the first three-quarters of a mile or so, I reached the long downhill that takes me to the bottom of my neighborhood. My back had loosened up a bit, and I was able to switch to a run three minutes walk one minute routine. During this time, I learned that if I landed with a jarring impact on my left foot, I was rewarded with a sharp pain and an involuntary buckling of the left knee. It was especially obvious going downhill, which caused me to land more on my heel.

I realized that I was getting a lesson in vertical displacement...

By concentrating on my form, running smooth, no bounce, landing on my mid-foot rather than my heel, I was able to make it out to the three mile marker. I could either turn around here or go for the full 8.4 mile loop. The heating pad on my back had kicked in, due to the sweat no doubt, and I certainly didn't feel any worse. The endorphins must have been helping as well. I decided to complete the full loop.

Usually, I run the loop in about an hour and twenty minutes. This day, it took me an hour and thirty eight minutes. By the end, it FELT like a half Ironman run, which was a good thing I guess.

At the end of the day, I had to carefully weigh the risk of running with the reward of the workout, and I'm glad that I did. It was totally worth it. Today, my back is actually feeling a little better, and I am none the worse for the wear.

On my way to school this morning, my heart broke when I saw a little boxer turtle crossing busy Bells Ferry Road. I know. They are a dime a dozen in these parts, but the little guy was taking a major risk. I pondered going back to get him, but I realized that by the time I dropped Matthew off at school, he would either be dead or safely across the road.

I hope the risk was worth the reward...

Have a great weekend, y'all....

Wes

14 comments:

Scott Keeps Running said...

That there's a fine line between risk and reward. Once you get the risk management equation fine-tuned then you let me know.

Kim said...

wes - take care of that back my friend! i hope that turtle made it to the other side. have a great memorial day weekend with deedee and the kids!

Maryland Girl aka Michelle said...

I hope the turtle made it! Enjoy your weekend!

Missy said...

Massage, chiro for the back?! I don't allow myself to get injured either so it's a fine, fine line.

Julie said...

Wes...Bullheaded? You need to start listening to your body:) Don't make it worse...take care of yourself! Have a great weekend Wes!

challenges2010 said...

Funny how it's do as I say not do as I do with you :-) I remember a few years ago someone telling me to listen to my body and rest an injury....lol.

When I saw the word "hill" I immediately winced thinking of your back not liking them!

Joe said...

There really is a fine line, Wes. And it takes some guts sometimes to know just where the line is.

Interestingly, I have often found that the flexibility of using different run/walk ratios helps. What you did early makes a lot of sense and provides a quasi-scientific way to assess just how bad it was. Had the 1/1 kept hurting, it would have been a good signal to call it quits and keep yor powder dry for another fight.

Enjoy the weekend!

triguyjt said...

hope that back stays loose....Good luck!! You get any massage??

Runner Leana said...

Hopefully your back is feeling better! Aw, poor, brave little turtle. I hope he made it across the street okay. When I was driving out to Mount Saint Helens I turned a corner and realized there was a chipmunk in the middle of the road and I had to just keep going. I looked in my rear view mirror I saw him scamper off. Phew!

Michelle said...

Hope your back is doing better. My chiropractor has done wonders for me - something you might consider if it keeps bothering you.

Stuart said...

Ouch back pain is the worst, maybe it's a sign...you know if better form is painless? Just sayin'!

JV said...

My husband uses an inversion table for lower back pain. Could be worth a try - that and stretching your hamstrings. Stay strong and rest up!

Smithposts said...

Hope the back is "back" to normal soon! I, too have a weakness for little animals crossing the road. Maybe the turtle had a safe journey!

Jess said...

Sounds like you need to get a nice massage to work out the soreness in your back...any excuse for a massage is a good one!