Wednesday, April 11, 2007

A many-stepped journey

I know I'd be a happier person if I took my own advice more often. For example: don't sweat the small stuff.

Today I had a particularly stressful phone conversation with my manager, for reasons I won't go into here (nothing bad, just the usual). I immediately went down to the treadmill for my Week 6 Day 3 run of my C25K plan. Things went okay until about 15 minutes into the running portion. With ten minutes remaining, I wasn't sure I had it in me to finish.

Five minutes went by, and what had started as a slight nagging in my legs had turned into a burning pain in each calf. I was counting the seconds, and had 300 to go. I tried to push it out but after another 30 seconds I realized how stupid I was being. Pain like that, that gets worse as you continue the exercise, is usually not something you want. I dropped back to walk pace immediately, walked for 5 minutes, and then stretched for a few minutes.

The pain is gone, but it's still tight. And I'm pissed that I couldn't complete my workout. But this is just one step on a long journey -- one training run that didn't complete as expected is hardly reason to get upset.

But such is the paranoia of the man who isn't fully confident he can do what he's attempting (even though he's done it before). Every tiny setback is examined from all possible angles.

Dave, don't sweat the small stuff. You still got a great workout in.

The question: was it just random chance? Unstretched legs? New running shoes? Too fast?

What do I change next time?

My plan: stick with the new shoes, drop my pace a bit, and try again in a couple days. If the pain returns, go to the running store on Monday and see if there's a different shoe I should be using.

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