Wow. It’s been a while! September became a record breaking month for me. At 63.3 miles, it was my highest monthly mileage ever! But then my workouts kind of came to a screeching halt. Since my Main Street Mile virtual race, an old hip/hip flexor injury started resurfacing. It came on slowly and is more of a deep ache than any acute pain, but it’s stemming from my TFL on the front side of my body and either the glute med or glute min on the side/back with a deep ache around my illiac crest (hip bone) when I stretch. Running didn’t necessarily make it worse, so I kept running for a bit, but mid-month I finally decided to take a full week off and see if that helped. While it’s not totally gone, it has definitely gotten better. I think at this point I just need more hip/core strength work and to remind myself of the benefits of foam rolling while not running the same route every time. The sidewalks and roads in my neighborhood are banked and I can start to feel the imbalance if I don’t switch things up often enough.
On top of that, in the middle of the month several things came together at the same time. I had completed all of the required hours for my health coaching practicum, so I was ready to take the final exam, which was a two part practical that I needed to pass in order to apply for the national certification exam. That application was due by October 30th, so we were under a bit of a time crunch. In the time of COVID, the practical final meant coaching a standard client for an initial and follow-up health coaching session through Zoom while my instructors watched to assess my coaching skills. If I thought regular test anxiety is bad, it’s nothing compared to knowing I’m being watched with a full debrief afterwards. Oof. So that was stressful. Less stressful was the Certified Health Education Specialist (CHES) exam that I took that Friday. Yep, in the same week as my health coaching finals I also sat for a national certification exam. (I also had two major assignments due that week. It was a big week.) I was supposed to sit for the CHES in April, but because of COVID it got moved to June. Due to technical issues, I wasn’t able to take it in June so it got pushed to their next regular October test window. I am happy to say, I passed! I am now certified for all of your health behavior change and community program planning needs!
However, the stress of that week kind of threw me in to an autoimmune flare. I never got the overwhelming fatigue I normally get, which was nice, but my muscles all felt shortened and like they had been packed with wet sand, my stomach was cranky, and I was super forgetful. Like, one day it took me 3 hours and 4 tries to get one email sent because every time I went to do it something distracted me and as soon as I was distracted the thought about sending the email was just gone. So that was fun. I also hit a point where I realized I needed to take a break from my running coach. She was great to have when I was training for Wine & Dine and for accountability at the start of the semester, but I felt like it was getting to be too much pressure having my workouts set for me. With everything else going on, I needed the flexibility to do whatever workout I felt like doing that day for my schedule, stress level, and sanity. Since I’m not training for anything and I often need shorter workouts, I’ve been dropping the run/walk and just running. Since they are short I’ve been telling myself I have to go at least a mile, the rest is negotiable, with the goal being to regularly run a continuous 5k by the end of the year. I have to tell you, it’s been hard. How is it that all summer I did 12-15ish miles of run/walk per week, but 4ish miles run during the week without run/walk is hard?! I used to do this. I don’t remember it feeling this hard. Oh well. Nothing to do but keep chipping away at it. Onward and upwards!
Monthly total: 11 Runs for 25.5 miles (6 hours and 33 minutes); 1 Walk for 2.1 miles (40 minutes); 4 Strength sessions (2 hours and 25 minutes); Total: ~9 hours and 39 minutes.