Saturday morning I ran a local 5K – the We’ve Got Your Back 5K in Reston. The irony of the reason for this race isn’t lost on me — after a week of back pain I am running a race all about spinal health!? Meant to be, if you ask me. Anyway, I ran this race last year and set a PR at the time of 25:22. When I PR’d a few weeks ago with 25:16 I decided I needed to do this race again this year so I could really measure my fitness (although they did alter the course slightly). Since my back pain had dissipated but not disappeared I ran the race cautiously on Saturday. My goals for the race were to run smart/really listen to my body and to enjoy myself. I accomplished both and I set a new PR! 24:52. I felt great – no pains or aches and I can honestly say I had a lot left in my tank when I crossed the finish line. I was the 4th female in my age group and 17th overall female (out of 192). These things make me smile because I know I’m overcoming the issues I’m facing and that I’m stronger because of it. Just like any mountain we have to climb, right?
Last week I was in the dumps. My lower back was hurting and I felt anxiety about it, wondering is my running a hindrance to getting back on track, or is it helping to make me stronger? The doc says to continue to run but do it carefully, really listening to any aches and pains. So I ran a handful of slow miles last week and did strength training and Pilates, too. I felt my strength – physically and emotionally – returning. My pain subsided and my spirits lifted.