Thursday, 11 October 2007

Taper - What Taper!!!

I have run about 2 to 3 miles in the last four days and it looks like I won't run any more miles this week - more of a sudden stop than a Taper. On Monday I completed 10 minutes warmup on the threadmill in the gym (about 1.2 miles). So far in line with tapering mode. On Tuesday I was in Dublin during the day and did not make the track in time to get my planned intervals in. Instead I drove to the Lee Fields car park on the straight road (2.5 miles of straight flat road, as the name suggests). I planned to warmup for about a mile and run 3 out and back 1,000m intervals with 400 to 500m recoveries (6k fast). I felt reasonably good and paced out 1 km from the car park, ran on another 400m and stretched. While I felt a slight tightness in my left calf I paid no attention to it - that was until I ran back to commence my first interval and the calf began to tighten up and cause pain. I stopped and stretched some more but the tightness did not leave and the pain remained as I jogged. Deciding to take no chances I walked the 1km back to the car (a few runners passed in both directions but I showed restraint - well more common sense than restraint). I drove to the gym for a short swim and a stint in the steam room to loosen out the muscles. I did not run on Wednesday as my left calf was still tender. This morning I went to Letti for some physio. She noticed swelling on the back on my left knee and tightness on the outside of my calf, where I felt the pain on Tuesday. She also found my right calf quite tight - "I'll have to take a hammer and chisel to this" were her exact words. She advised that I do no running for the next few days and Xtrain if I wanted to. So I've decided to hold off on running until Sunday when I will do a medium long run of about 15 miles - either with 8 to 10 miles at MP or some intervals between 5 miles of warmup and warmdown. I've certainly missed my speedwork this week. I still hope to get some final intervals in on Tuesday next, my final speed session before the marathon - and still safely 13 days before race day. (May even try Thursday - 11 days out) When I got leg cramps a month ago I went back on magnesium tablets (I took them for about 6 months last year before Dublin) but I have not been diligent in taking them daily - that'll have to change for the next two weeks. At least I think I have done nothing stupid (so far) as Thomas advised.


  1. Hammer and chisel? That's gotta hurt! My lack of stretching and strengthening will eventually come to haunt me too. Reaching my toes is now a long gone memory...

  2. I have a long standing issue with calf cramps, and not just when running. A few years ago someone recommended magnesium-phosphate tissue salts, which you can buy dead cheap in every health food store. I have been taking them ever since, and I believe they have helped, but not alleviated the problem.

  3. I'd be careful with this one Grellan. If it's only tightness, you should be OK. Monitor it during the warm-up for Sunday and postpone the run if the pain is still there, or doesn't subside with continued easy running.