Toronto Mike

Running Injury: What Did I Do?


I need your help.  I'm lying in bed, just like Brian Wilson did, and I'm here because of something that happened at the end of my 17k run yesterday afternoon.  Here are the details.  I'd love to hear your thoughts on what happened to me and when this pain will go away.

We ran a good 12k before breaking very briefly for a bathroom break and water.  Then, we ran another 5k.  With about 2k to go, my right leg started cramping up.  It was along the right side and back and every step was painful.  I wanted to finish the run, so we just cut the speed and I managed my way through the discomfort.

Last night at home, it felt bruised, but I was able to limp through it.  I was hoping a good night's sleep would cure what ailed me, but at 3am this morning the pain was excruciating.  My right leg felt severely bruised and a walk down the hall to the bathroom almost caused me to black out.  I popped Advils, had a hot bath and managed to sleep through the night.

This morning, I feel better than I did at 3am, but I'm still operating on one good leg and one crap leg.  It hurts to bend, the stairs are a bitch and it's tender as all hell.  Revisiting the run yesterday, I have a few theories as to what I did wrong.

  1. It was cold outside, especially along the Lakeshore, but I still wore shorts.  Did cold legs cause this seizing and cramping?
  2. I had spent about five hours on my feet before this run, and I was already tired when we began.  Did I simply do too much at this stage in the training game?
  3. I mentioned the break after 12k.  This was a nature break and a chance to drink some H2O.  It only lasted a few minutes, but did I inadvertently cool down causing issues during the last 5k?
  4. I didn't fuel properly.  I violated all the rules when it comes to long runs.  I didn't ensure I was properly energized before the run and I didn't eat during the run.  Did my body simply run out of energy?
  5. Prior to yesterday, my long runs (>10k) have all taken place at 8:30am.  Yesterday's run took place at 3:30pm.  Did this change play a role?

There's your 411 and a few potential causes that are rattling around in my head.  Firstly, I'd like to know what I did wrong so I can prevent it from ever happening again.  Secondly, I'd like to know what I can do to recover as soon as possible.  And finally, I'd like to know what the hell this is because I'm not a big fan of rehabilitating pain.

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