I knew it would happen eventually. I get so obsessed over things sometimes I just do, do, do until one day I've done done it to the point I: a.) hurt myself or b.) burn myself out. The kicker is, I knew I was doing something wrong from the beginning, but I was hoping for, what? My body to become invincible? When will I ever learn?
Maybe I should back up a bit...
Three weeks ago, I started walking home from work a few times a week. I live about 5.5 miles away, so I figured this would be a great jumping off point for my more lengthier training sessions: 5.5 miles a day times 5 days a week equals 27.5 miles plus what I'd do on the weekends. Perfect plan! Right? Right.
Believe it or not, this is not where I had problems. It seems that no matter what I do, I can't seem to get walking home more than three times a week. Appointments keep popping up where I need to be home earlier than 6:30 (takes me about 1.5 hours to walk home, btw).
The walking was going great! Until this past Monday.
My lovely apartment building only has two sets of washer/dryers for the 26 apartments contained therein. Since summer has finally hit the Great Pacific Northwest, these machines have been in a constant state of washing and drying. I haven't been able to wash anything since last week. On Sunday, I wore my last clean pair of workout socks. So Monday, I just grabbed a pair of my regular short socks and figured there couldn't be that much of a difference. Right? Yeeaah, right.
This is where you all shake your heads, sigh, and tell me there is a reason workout socks are twice as padded as regular socks. If I had thought to take pictures before writing this, I'd show you the difference. In fact, when my camera batteries get done charging, I'll post pictures.
Here are the socks:
(I have NO idea why the photo is turned sideways... it's not on my computer, just happens when I upload it. /sigh)
Add the thin sock situation with the fact that I'm still breaking in my New! Shoes! (which I still haven't blogged about... damn, I'm behind) and you get... Anyone? Yes. Blisters! I haven't worn anything on my feet but flip flops for two days now. The sides of my heels are blistered.
So, feet? Blistered. But that's not all! Oh, no.
I've been trying to drink more water when I walk. This is kind of a new concept for me because I think carrying a water bottle is a big old pain in the ass.
This is where you shake your head again.
I've made it a point to carry water with me while I walk home and have done so, drinking every time I stop at a light for the last two weeks. It hasn't been that bad, actually, as I've been carrying a backpack full of my work clothes and it has side pockets especially for water bottles.
Monday, however, was hotter than the other days I've walked. I followed my plan, and pulled out my water bottle at every stoplight and sipped while I waited my turn to cross streets. I didn't feel anything different (aside from the growing blisters I mentioned earlier) until I got home and took off my shoes and crappy socks. Then my legs started to ache. From my hips down to my ankles, it felt like they were swelling.
At first I thought, "hmm... weird!" And I propped up my legs with pillows to get the swelling to abate. Nothin' doin'. They ached and ached until finally around midnight, I caved and took some Ibuprophin to get some relief. (Yes, I know I should have started it earlier. I was just hoping it would go away on it's own.)
By morning, my legs no longer ached, but my ankles still did. I went into work and spoke with some of the exercisers we have, and it seems that I need to drink drinks with electrolytes in them when I'm walking (especially in the heat) and my legs were swelling to try to keep some of the fluid. This all seems so simple and intuitive, doesn't it? This is stuff I should know!
Here I am on Wednesday. I haven't walked since Monday. My legs, for the most part, feel back to normal. The blisters, save one gigantic one, are all gone. So, I think tomorrow I'll be back in the swing of things. I hope tomorrow I'll be back in the swing of things and I'll walk home again.
With workout socks.
And a sports drink.