Marathon recovery and racing

Last week I went for my first run since the Philadelphia Marathon – it was a slow run and I was aiming to do at least 3.5 or 4 miles. Apparently my muscles were not ready for that and the tightness in my calf led me to abandon at just 2.7 miles. That was on Monday. I planned to try again on Wednesday, but for one reason or another that run didn’t happen.

Thursday was Thanksgiving, and that meant the Ashenfelter 8k Classic – I had not planned to race it this year, but RVRR was pushing to get the team represented in the last team points race of the year (plus it’s a fun race) so I had signed up.

Given the difficulties I had running on Monday I wasn’t really expecting much, but that all changed when I started running – there’s something about a large crowd at a race that can push you beyond what you would expect. I thought I’d aim for a 7 minute mile pace and see how it went. The first mile was completed in about 6:50 which felt reasonable – the only difficulty was breathing and I suspect that was due to the cold – I don’t recall breathing that hard in a race for a long time. The second mile was similar, still feeling reasonable, so I picked up the pace slightly after that.



My official time was only 2 seconds slower than last year so I felt pretty good about that (only 11 days after Philly) although I seem to recall not feeling too great last year either so perhaps it’s not the best comparison. I had a feeling my legs were not going to be happy after this and I was right. My calf muscles ached more than they had since a few days after the marathon and I had to rethink my exercise plans for the weekend focusing on just stretching in the Bodyflow classes.

I’m hoping to run later today with no problems.


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