The best spring/summer recipe, Do I have an INJURY or it is just DISCOMFORT???

Super fun that we are back to glove weather here in Utah for my morning runs.  At least I can still wear shorts… if we go back to running tights because of snow, I’m really going to throw a fit or something.

The kids had a great morning together playing and hanging out with Beretta before Knox left with his mom for the day.

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Brooke and I headed out to spend some time together.

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We first went to a bday celebration for some of our girls!

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180 Tacos is another Utah must-try if you ever visit.  Cascabel chicken salad and cascabel chicken soup (aka I really have a thing for their cascabel chicken).

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And then the two of us spent the afternoon swimming at an indoor pool.

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Pretty excited about her new flamingo swimsuit!

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And this is how you know you had a good time at the pool… prune hands.  I think we went around the lazy river approximately 58 times.

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We got home, showered and I got to work while Andrew was studying.  Brooke was coloring and then she just came over to Andrew, put her head on him and fell asleep.

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Beretta felt like it would be a good idea to to join Brooke.  Swimming is exhausting, I get it.

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Tis’ the season for COWBOY CAVIAR.  This stuff is heavenly.  Please make it soon and tell me about how much you loved it.

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We also had an amazing watermelon from Costco… when looking for watermelons we are all about searching for as many bee sting marks as possible on the watermelon. We figure if the bees are trying to get to a particular one like crazy, it must be sweet and perfect.  This one was beyond sweet.

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One of the many great things about Cowboy Caviar is how well it goes with everything else… you can put it on so many different things.  My favorite is on top of a sweet potato and these chicken and cheese nachos were amazing too.

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Round two happened at 9:09 pm… this stuff is good.

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Ya know what I think is one of the hardest parts about running?  Knowing whether whatever you are feeling is just a little discomfort and not a big deal or if what you are feeling is an injury (or soon to be injury).  It is a tough call and a lot of times if you really can’t tell, you should definitely visit your doctor, pt or chiropractor but there here are some things you can think about when determining whether it is an injury or not:

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“Injury:  Lingering or sharp pain that causes gait change, compensation and stress in other areas of the body, and mental anguish.

Discomfort:  Doesn’t change gait, dissipates with movement or over time, low level pain that dissipates, slightly uncomfortable but not stressful.” (source)

There have been a few times where I was definitely in the injury denial phase.  Once, I was running on the treadmill with a quad injury that was completely causing me to limp (gait change) and a friend that saw me at the gym told me it was time to get off the treadmill and go see my doctor.  She was so right.  I took 5 complete weeks off from running after that.  If whatever is happening with your body is causing your form/gait/stride to change… it’s time to take a step back and get the problem fixed.  Even if it is a small injury, the change in your form/gait/stride is most likely going to cause an injury too;)

Discomfort is different.  For me, this is when I have something bugging me that takes a mile or two to go away during a run.  It is a little uncomfortable but I’m definitely not thinking about it a lot during the run (if running with an injury, that is pretty much ALL I can think about).  Discomfort is kind of part of running (in my opinion).  It’s hard, my body is telling me to quit constantly and especially when I am doing hard workouts, discomfort is my middle name.

My current motto is if the pain/niggle/problem is taking the fun out of running for me—> I STOP.   If it is just a little annoyance every now and then or if it just lasts for the warm-up then I adjust my training a bit but keep running.  Injuries take all of the fun out of running for me so there is zero point to keep running for me.

Stress fractures are tricky, I think, to really know because sometimes the pain has just started out super dull for me… and then it leads to much more.  I have noticed a pain and it was probably a stress reaction that then turned into a stress fracture.  Stress fractures are most common in the shins and feet but they can also happen in the femurs and hips!  Some of these symptoms include “swelling, pain, tenderness over a specific spot, increased pain and swelling with activity, earlier onset of pain with successive workouts and continued pain even at rest as damage progresses.” (source)  I definitely take it as a big red flag if something is hurting when I’m NOT running!!

When in doubt, take time off (and go see someone to check you out).  I’d rather take a few days off for discomfort that I’m worried might be an injury than run through an injury that I think might just be discomfort and be forced to take months off!

And if you do have to take time off, there are so many different cross-training things you can talk to your doctor about… pool-running is my favorite!

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PS the 5 most common running injuries that happen—> Plantar Fasciitis, Achilles Tendinitis, IT Band Syndrome, Shin Splints and Runner’s Knee… I’ve had 4/5 of those injuries in the past.  I haven’t struggled with any achilles problems (that I can remember)… knock on wood.

Be prepared if you do get an injury in the future… Runner’s Jealousy is real and I experience it big time with each injury;)  Just remember that you will come back a stronger and smarter runner!  Before you know it, after treating your body to some rest and much needed recovery, you will be back out there with everyone else enjoying (ehhh working hard) those miles!

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Have you had one or more of the 5 most common running injuries?  Which one(s)?

How do you know whether or not to run through something?  When it is an injury?

On what days of the week do you usually do your more difficult workouts for the week?

-Usually Tuesday/Thursday because I don’t love doing workouts on Mondays so T/Th just feels right and it gives me time to recovery before my weekend longer run.

Would you rather have fresh berries stocked in your home 100% of the year or perfect watermelon stocked in your home 100% of the year?

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60 comments

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watermelon is my favorite, especially as it gets warmer outside! My harder runs are Tuesday/Thursday but I tweak it depending upon my schedule and the weather.

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Whaaaat I think the pattern of Brooke’s bathing suit is the exact same as the image I have as my desktop wallpaper at work. This is the image I used: https://prismic-io.s3.amazonaws.com/maydesigns%2F4bcc8194-e046-44b6-b319-034f1db3724f_md-desktop-mint-flamingos-opt.jpg I would love a bathing suit with that pattern haha!

I’ve never had PF but I’ve had the four other common injuries! This post is timely for me because I’m currently trying to decide if I have runner’s knee right now. When I was on my cruise the waves were really rocky and when I ran on the ship’s track I was bounced around a lot and my left knee felt kind of sore after my last run. I wonder if my gait changed while I was trying to stabilize myself and stay upright! It doesn’t feel tender or sore anymore so I’m hoping it was just a cruise thing!

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Oh I LOVE it Kristina hahaha! I’ll see if Old Navy has an adult version of her swimsuit;) So interesting about your knee and I really hope it was just a cruise thing (so glad you got to go though:)! Keep me updated with how your knee is feeling!

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My latest injury has been hard because my boyfriend has continued training for our half marathon this Sunday. This will be my second DNS of the season and I couldn’t even hear him mention his mileage accomplishments at first but then I just rode my bike next to him trying to be gracious. Sigh. I’m now not limping anymore but don’t think I can run just yet. It’s been 5 weeks.

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Sally, I am SO so sorry about what you are going through. I’m very glad that you aren’t limping anymore… but still so so hard. Thinking about you!

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I’ve had plantar problems in the past and it was awful! I was training for a 15K and got to the final week of training before I decided I had to pull out of the race. I still haven’t hit that distance, and I think my past injury is part of what has been holding me back. Maybe I’ll try to tackle it again this year ;)

Your fruit question is so hard! I love to load up Greek yogurt with berries, but watermelon is so good! I might have to go with watermelon, though. I just love how sweet and juicy it is :)

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Oh my gosh, I want her flamingo suit!! Im going away to paradiso soon, so I need a new bikini! Injuries are so tough my god… i usually let myself rest for a few days then i figure out a loophole to still get a workout in.

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Ugh. I’ve definitely suffered through plantar fasciitis and a few stress fractures (the worst being a pelvic one and a hip one). I used to run through all pain, but I’ve reached a point where I realize my well-being is more important than getting miles in, and I’m OK with having to take time off when I need to. I haven’t had any major running injuries in a really long time, and I’d like to keep it that way. Hopefully my kidney issues will be completely gone soon, too, so that I can train harder and race again!

I would rather have fresh berries because I HATE watermelon!

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I like Thursdays for harder runs.
Watermelon all the way!

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Like you I’ve had plenty of running injuries. Not that is a good thing. I always give myself a few days to see if it gets better. If i feel pain/discomfort after a few days then I shut down running and get a deep tissue massage. If I still feel worse later than I go to the doctor to make sure it’s not bone related!

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Thanks for your comment on running injuries – perfect timing for me to read about that and remember the difference between discomfort and pain.
I had (and thats really strange to realize) all 5 common injuries in the past. The one that bothered me the most was Shin Splints. And I had 4 stress fractures (fibula, tibia, midfoot, backfoot). Unfortunately, the last 2 months I felt a dull ache in my other foot… I took off a few days from running, but it didn’t help. So right now I am totally into cross training (elliptical and pool-running with a friend, the only way to get through these very repetitive workouts in my opinion). Hopefully by backing off early I avoid having my fifth stress fracture in six years of running….

(and another thanks for reminding me of Cowboy Caviar – we loved it and its on the menue for next week again)

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FOUR STRESS FRACTURES… oh Sarah, that is rough! Yes, pool-running and the elliptical are a million trillion times better with somebody else! Please keep me updated with how you are doing… I’m hoping in the next few days you start to feel better and that this is NOT a stress fracture!

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Oh man, this post totally hits home! As you know, I am STILL dealing with hamstring tendonitis and IT band ickiness. Took 2 weeks off running completely (in the middle of marathon training) and am in PT 2x/week. Also getting dry needling 2x/week. Doing strengthening, stretching, foam rolling, icing, ice baths – you name it I’m doing it. Have had a lot of runner jealousy, especially living in Boston during the biggest race of the year! I got back to running a bit, ran 10 miles on Saturday, thanks to some ibuprofen (yes I know I shouldn’t mask pain), and now my knee hurts (transferal pain). My marathon is on May 7th and I do feel like I can finish it, but my BQ goals are out the window and if I hurt, then I will DNF as to not completely put myself out for months. After the marathon, I will definitely take some time off and hopefully come back stronger for a BQ in the fall. I will be stronger after all this, right?!

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You are doing everything you can Kim to get healthy and that is so important. OH I BET that was hard during the marathon to be injured/coming back from taking time off. PLEASE keep me updated with how you are doing and put that body of yours first! You will get that BQ someday and I can’t wait to hear all about it!

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I have never had any of those injuries. Knock on wood. I have however caused my sternum to pop out, and now it is healed permanently in its new position.
I normally do my long workouts on the weekends. I haven’t started any strenuous running workouts yet, because I’m still a little new. (Well I used to run then I took an extended time off and I’m trying to get back into it) I do however use the week days to add weights.
That last question is a hard one. I think I would have to say watermelon.

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Ooo…I will have to use that strategy next time I go to pick out a watermelon!!

However, I would probably have more berries in my house. I can eat raspberries all day long!

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So can Knox and Andrew…. we buy raspberries and they are gone in seconds. I hope you get some amazing ones soon Tiffany!

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Runner’s Jealousy is definitely a thing! I even get it when I’ve gone for a run in the morning, and then see other people running outside later in the day, lol. Especially if its a nice day.

I am fortunate to not have had many injuries. I’ve struggled with shin splints when I increase my mileage, and I’ve had some issues with my hip flexor, but nothing that can’t be cured with a few days rest.

I usually do my long run on Sundays, and take Wednesdays and Saturdays off. The rest of the week, I go based on how my body feels, so I don’t really have a schedule other than that.

I looove watermelon (and ate so much last summer when I was pregnant), but I think I would go with berries.

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HAHAH YES… I get that too Laura and then I have to remind myself that I’ve already gotten in a run that day and to look forward to my run the next morning! I hope you are having a wonderful day and I was the same way… when I was pregnant with Brooke I could not stop eating cold watermelon during the summer (probably because I was like 14 months pregnant living in a house with no AC in July ha)!!

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Absolutely love this piece on injury vs. discomfort. I definitely tend to push through discomfort……wish a certain running partner I had could do the same:-)

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Thanks Lori! I hope you are having a great day and I hope you and your training partner are on the same page soon;)

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Wow, I haven’t had any of those 5 injuries! My first real running injury was last spring–a femoral shaft stress fracture. Yeah, go big or go home, huh?! I remember reaching out to you during that time, and you sent me the sweetest/most encouraging reply. It really helped and made a difference, Janae. I truly appreciated that.

Then, this spring I was suffering from lower back pain. I saw a chiro/PT/started doing hot yoga, and had acupuncture. I think the hot yoga and the acupuncture made the biggest difference!

After the whole femur thing and taking 10 weeks off, I’ve learned to just cut back and shut things down if something feels off. You’re so right–before I took a break with my back in Feb, the worry of the injury/discomfort was sucking the joy out of running, too. Not worth it. Running will always be there. I enjoyed the spin bike, muscle class, and hot yoga til I returned to running.

Okay, I wrote a book! Sorry! :)

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OUCH… a femoral SHAFT stress fracture. I remember our emails Jen! I’m so glad that you recovered and I’m so happy to year that the hot yoga and acupuncture helped with your lower back problems! Love the lessons you have learned! Thank you for your comment Jen and I hope you have a wonderful day!

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Pretty sure I have achilles tendinitis and have for a while. Taking a few weeks off helps but it’s never healed completely. I probably need to take more time off but man, that would stink! Hardest days are Wednesday and Sunday for me. I would prefer fresh berries over watermelon.

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Hey Ali!!! That does not sound fun at all! I hope the pain melts away asap and that you get some fresh berries soon!

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I’ve run with shin splints before and it’s NOT fun! This is really helpful, we should be listening to our bodies when we run.

Also, that cowboy caviar looks so good! I’ve never heard of it before. Do you have a recipe for it?

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Shin splints are the worst!! YES… here is the recipe: http://hungryrunnergirl.com/2016/04/the-best-cowboy-caviar-recipe-sunday-happenings-and-my-training-last-week.html

Have a great day!

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Berries! And Wednesday workouts with long run/rides on Saturdays.

Probable tendonitis on the TOP of my foot right now (we think). Do PT exercises to hopefully get rid of the silliness :/

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The top of your foot? Oh Leeann that is not fun. Hopefully it all gets worked out ASAP and feeling back to normal. Thinking about you and I hope you get some berries soon!

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I’ve struggle a lot with shin splints. Once I pushed too much on a long run having shin pain that I ended up in tears of pain, that’s how I realized I was injured. Whenever any running pain is keeping me from walking normally for more than one day, I know I should not run through it.

I used to do my most difficult workouts of the week on Thursdays. Right now, as I’m not following a training plan and everything is crazy with the end of the school semester, everyday is kind of the same when it comes to levels of difficulty.

Having to chose between watermelon and berries is kind of hard for me. I’m recently obsessed with blackberries, so I guess I will chose berries for now.

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That watermelon looks delicious. I can’t wait to eat some on a hot summer day – cause that’s when it tastes the best!

I’ve had plantar fasciitis before. It’s pretty miserable.

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I’ve definitely been in injury denial a time or too. I once though I just overused my ankle and ended up with a sprain halfway through run! It’s so important to listen to your body and be honest with how you’re feeling. side note: that cowboy cavier looks AMAZING!

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I can’t WAIT for watermelon season around here. I can eat so much in one sitting because it’s just so refreshing. I think I might need to get a Costco membership this summer just for the watermelon…

Since I have been running after my knee injury, I am a serious hypochondriac. I don’t want to be injured again with every little twinge I jump into the “oh my gosh, my foot is broken/Achilles is strained/IT bands are torn” pit of worry. It’s the worst! But I hear you, telling the difference can be so hard. I just need to appreciate the time right now where I am totally ok and try and relax and really listen to my body :)

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Thank you for writing about injury denial — I struggle with this so bad. Also, that cowboy cavier looks amazing. I am going to make that this weekend!

I was back in Utah this past weekend and got my best ever time running the SLC half marathon – I didn’t keep track of my time and by the time I got to the end I was shocked at my finishing time haha! Your blog has really showed me how I can use whatever is going on in my life (the uplifting and hard) to push me to run faster. Thank you for that!!! In the past I’ve always compartmentalized — “Running is separate from work which is separate from my relationships. . .” but you’ve done such a good job on here showing me how running parallels what is going on in our lives and we can use it to become stronger runners and stronger people! It’s incredibly vulnerable to share personal things on a public blog and I so respect people who do it. I was thinking about that around mile 9. Haha!

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Meg,
I cannot thank you enough for your sweet comment! AND HUGE CONGRATULATIONS on the SLC half marathon. It was such a beautiful day for the race too! I am so happy that I’ve been able to help a little bit. I love the realization you’ve been able to have…. you are amazing! Seriously thank you and please keep in touch! I hope you enjoy the cowboy caviar this weekend!

Thanks,
Janae

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Fresh berries, definitely! I have been quite lucky to have no real injuries to day.

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I’ve had PF, IT band, and knee issues. (I also had a hip stress fracture, which was not fun at all).

I know if the pain is sharp or sudden that I have an injury. Since I have an hip impingement I get pain that lingers. I have exercises to work around it which usually keeps pain away.

Swimming IS exhausting and naps are better when the dog or cat join in. :)

Berries, hands down. Any and all the berries.

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I have had ALL the injuries. I’m with you on not running through pain for too long. I love running when I am pain-free. I DESPISE running when something is screaming at me. Running is no fun when something is hurting.

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OMG – I was just thinking through this myself recently. I have had a niggle in my foot and instead of ignoring it, I throw ALL THE THERAPY at it and see someone if it gets bad. This approach has kept me training consistently and injury free for almost 3 years. I’ve had stress fractures, it band injuries and achilles tendonitis as a newer runner but I find as my body has adapted to the load, I am injured less and less.

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That cowboy caviar looks SO GOOD. I am definitely going to make it this spring/summer.

I love watermelon, but I would prefer to have fresh berries at all times. I love berries and I can totally tell a difference when I eat them (they make me feel really good).

I have had plantar fascitis, shin splints, and tendinitis.

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Never really been sidelined with those runner’s injuries. I think mixing in triathlons gives me enough cross and strength training to avoid what are mostly overuse issues.

Typically my tough workout is on Tuesday. I did your 10k pace ladder today. Tough, but fair. Loved it. Will be adding it to my Tuesday interval rotation.

Love both, but would probably opt for the additional health benefits of berries.

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I reading this post sitting at my desk at work with my foot propped up under my desk in a PF Boot. :( I can’t sleep in it at night, because it makes my toes go numb. So when I’m sitting for extended periods of time, I strap in on. I’be been struggling with PF since I started back working out after giving birth 7 months ago. I’ll go through periods where i think it’s better, and then I’ll walk barefoot for a few hours… I’ve had to change what shoes I can wear, I never walk barefoot, I stretch my foot constantly, and I foam roll my calves and hamstrings/roll my foot on a spiky ball (which is possibly one of the grossest feelings ever). I’ve avoided going to the Dr., because I know he’s just going to prescribe RICE and possibly physical therapy. I’ve been trying to figure out what else I can do to help…

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Hey Katie!!! I am truly SO so sorry about what is going on with you right now… PF is THE WORST!!! I have had it a lot and usually wearing the boot at night for a few days makes it a lot better… boo to it making your toes go numb though. SO I kind of stopped going to traditional doctors for injuries like this and started seeing a chiropractor (Dr. Bennett) and it has made the world of difference. Rather than say, just take time off, he finds the root of the problem and what is causing it. Scraping has helped a TON for me when I get PF too.

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Berries v watermelon is a hard one! Probably watermelon. But only maybe.
I have had plantar fasciitis and IT band issues and tight hamstrings. And I still struggle about wether to run through something.
My hard running workouts are t/th for sure

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Hi Janae!
My question is a little off topic, but how long should you wait after a marathon to start speed workouts again? I know definitely wait until your body is feeling ready to just start to run again (and start out easy!) but when is an okay time to start incorporating some speed workouts? Thanks so much!!
p.s. watermelon all day long :)

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Great question Anna! Congrats on your marathon! For me personally I try to remember that even though my body might feel up to a speed workout again after a marathon, there is damage down to the cellular level that happens during the race and that needs recovery too! We just can’t feel that:) So if I raced a marathon and really put in a lot of effort, I wait a month or so (sometimes more just because I feel burned out mentally). If I take the marathon at an easier pace then I usually wait 2-3 weeks! I hope that answers your question!

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Thanks so much!! :)

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Yes watermelon season is here! Costco has the best watermelons hands down. But I haven’t heard of this bee sting theory?! I need clarification! Why would they sting a watermelon?

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So there isn’t really a theory but we just think that if all the bees want to sting a certain watermelon then it must be the best one!? I’ve heard that the bees go for the sweet ones! Kind of silly but it always works for us!

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Lol I have never heard anything like that! I’ll give it a shot. Ok but I just can’t let go the fact that when a bee stings something it dies, so the bees that want that watermelon are on a total kamikaze mission. That would have to be like the BEST watermelon ever.

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I Love Watermelon. I had never heard of bee stings and watermelon. How do you tell if a bee has been stinging the watermelon?

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I was just thinking about the distinction between injury and discomfort today, since my hamstring was starting to feel a little funny (not funny) today. I’m usually pretty good at determining when pain is dangerous and when it’s just a discomfort… Some rules of thumb I use are that pain is okay if it’s not getting worse when I run OR when I stop (I’ve had some tricky injuries that only start hurting when I stop running!), and if stretching significantly helps it.

I’ve had achilles tendinitis, IT band syndrome, and shin splints – all within the past year! Fortunately, none were so bad that I had to take off for more than a week.

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I currently have an IT Band injury, which I’ve had since 17th of March, not that I’m counting or anything, haha. I’ve broken my leg before and had it in an ilisarov frame (google image it, lol) and this is honestly so much more frustrating. I was training for a marathon which is on the 1st May and although I’m now able to walk with only slight pain, my physio has advised me a marathon could leave me with some permanent damage.
I rely on running as my therapy and I’m really struggling. Also runner envy is a sooo real. I was cross-training (swimming, elliptical, rowing) but it kept irritating my IT band and I wasn’t healing properly so I completely stopped exercising as of last Friday. Any words of wisdom to help me mentally through what most people would not think of as being a trying time, would gratefully appreciated!!

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Been having shin splints for a few months off and on but it fades after a mile or so and is only there while running. Frustrating but it doesn’t keep me from running and i just hope it will fade eventually.

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Perfect watermelon for the win! I hate having to lug those things home and cut them up, not to mention guessing if I’m picking a good one or not – having an unlimited supply of prepared perfect watermelon would definitely increase my quality of life ;)

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I contemplate the difference between injury and discomfort on almost every run. Ha! On Saturday when I went out for my run I had an ‘off’ feeling in my ankle. If I ignore that feeling and it gets worse, I limp for days after #notworthit But sometimes it just feels off the first mile. I am not willing to ignore the discomfort and run the risk of getting an injury (I have had ALL the ones you listed as most common at some point in the last 15yrs) No single run is worth that. Luckily the discomfort went away and I ran 5.5 miles and it felt fine then and does now.

That cowboy caviar truly is good on errrthang.

I love watermelon, but I would pick berries.

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Are bee sting bites on watermelon rind a real thing? What does that look like?

We’ve had weather go from winter, to spring temps/sun, then a snow revisit. My compromise is shorts with long socks or short sleeves with arm warmers (then the ever present winter mittens and hat) harumph!!!!

Do you do *workouts* scheduled/routinely even if there’s no race on the horizon?

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I am dealing with an IT band issue on my right knee and a left calf strain. I made it through my Boston marathon training but my doc told me today to not run for 4 weeks, cross train and go to PT. Hoping that will do the trick so I can get back to training for a fall marathon. Hopefully these 4 weeks will go by quickly!

I am definitely a berry girl. I will eat watermelon but don’t love it.

I can’t wait to get back to running so I can try a few of the speed workouts that you have posted lately!

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I’ve never heard of the bee sting theory but it’s sure interesting. I grew up in a place in Jamaica where there were lots of watermelon farms so it always tastes like home.
And that cowboy caviar sure looks good.

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Currently dealing with my first stress fracture on top of my foot. Never had any of the 5 injuries before- but def ran too fast and too far after labor :( Now I’m stuck in a boot and can’t walk without limping with a newbrn

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