“I want to run (faster, longer, etc), but I’m afraid my IT band is going to start hurting again…”
I feel like the above statement has gone through this a gazillion times in the past two years, the problem is that I whenever I did increase my training, my IT band did start to hurt–bad. I would start out training, have a strong race or workout, then my IT band says “not so fast, I’m not finished with you!”
The above scenario is not what happened this time, but I did experience some IT band tightness so I’ve been quite fearful of ramping up my running this time around.
Things felt fine for a couple of days after the 10K and two 3 milers (all very hilly compared to where I normally train) but then I hopped on the treadmill and felt tightness after one mile. I got off, did my strengthening and stretching and tried again the next day. Same thing happened. So, I decided to stop running for a few days. Well, a few days turned into almost TWO weeks. Yikes. I went running on this past Sunday on a very flat part of the C&O Canal out of Harper’s Ferry, West Virginia. It felt good, no IT band pain/tightness, but I started to freak out that it *might* start acting up, so I stopped and walked back.
I know at times I can be too cautious and not working as hard as I can due to fear of getting injured. I’m confident I’ve almost got a handle on this IT band thing as I’m not having pain, just some tightness. I’ve ramped up the strengthening and stretching (lunch breaks at work are for hip bridges and planks in an empty exam room) and I’m focusing more on good running form rather than speed.
So what does this mean for the fall race season? No half marathons as originally planned. The plan is to do 5Ks, 8Ks and 10Ks that are on my schedule–but only if there’s no pain/tightness in my IT band. I started the Hal Higdon Novice 10K training plan today (my goal being the Wicked 10K on Halloween), which includes 3 day of running and builds in cross training and strengthening to the schedule, which is exactly what I need right now.
Have you ever had an injury that you can’t mentally get over?