On The Dreadmill

Getting out for two runs a week is manageable in summer.  In winter just getting one in requires a bit more effort.  Fitting in three runs a week on a regular basis requires more organisation than I possess.  The solution?  In January, I bought a treadmill.  The only way running farther is going to happen for me is to gradually increase my running by running more frequently.  And the only way I will be able to run more frequently is if I can run without leaving the house.  Hopefully this will also help stop me from pushing harder than I should when I only run infrequently and hence ending up injured more than I would like!

While my intentions are good, it’s been off to an incredibly slow start.  Firstly, I bought the treadmill the day after the physio had told me not to run for 2 weeks – boo!  Then when I was allowed to run again, I wanted to head outside, because I had missed it too much to just run at home.  I started getting back into a rhythm and put a couple of short 2-3km runs on the treadmill – all part of my plan to run a little more frequently without over doing things.  Then two weeks ago, I broke my toe.  Not running related.

Since we have another rogaine on this weekend, I really needed to test out my toe beforehand – so on the trusty treadmill for this purpose.  This way if my toe started screaming at me at any point, I was already home.  I buddy taped my toe, with a little extra tape to prevent possible blisters on the toes now pushed together.  I slipped on my shoes – all good so far.  My plan was to do an hour on the treadmill at whatever pace the toe could cope with.  I hadn’t run for two weeks, and with the break in January as well, my fitness is rapidly decreasing.  Walking 4km/hr was ok, so I turned the speed up and settled at 5.5km/hr – not pushing things, but not dawdling either.  After 20 minutes I increased the speed to 8km/hr for 5 minutes to see how it all went with a bit of running action.  To my surprise, I still felt absolutely no pain or discomfort.  Another 20 minutes of walking, 5 minutes running and ended the hour with a final 10 minutes walking.

Success!  An hour on the treadmill, no pain in the toe and I now have high hopes of coping with the rogaine tomorrow.  I loved that the treadmill allowed me to do this at home so I had the security of knowing that if the toe caused issues, I could stop at any point.  Or is the taping was problematic, I could take a break and sort it out before continuing.  It also meant that I didn’t have to worry about silly things like stubbing my toe on uneven pavements or tree roots on a trail.  While this rogaine is another 6hr event, we will again only be there for a shorter time – no more than 5hrs due to babysitting constraints.  Probably a good thing really.

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