We had about 76% totality here & although my camera refused to fully cooperate, there were some cool pinhole leaf images.
There's a partial eclipse in there somewhere....
Running-wise, week 8 wasn't a *terrible* week, but it also wasn't exactly the week I'd planned. As usual, things got off to a pretty decent start with morning strength work and karate on Monday and a solid speed session (9.5 miles) at the track on Tuesday. All paces were hit and nothing felt weird or off.
That is, until I got home, and noticed that some of the painful spots in my shins from the week before had returned. And there was one tender painful spot in particular on the left side that did not get better as the evening went on, and in fact the pain was bad enough to be actively annoying and keep me up half the night and irritate me the entire next day at work.
Generally, I don't freak out too much about painful shins. I've always gotten shin splints, and after years of seeing a wide range of professionals and trying every imaginable intervention on earth, I've come to the conclusion that they're largely due to tight calves, so I do try to roll and stretch them out as much as possible (y'know. When I think about it).
It used to be that the possibility of a real-life-honest-to-god stress fracture was a kind of bogey man that scared the crap out of me any time the shin splints got bad or started to feel a little more localized, but it always went away without ever showing any of the really tale-tell signs of a stress fracture. So shin pain became sort of this ritual where I'd wring my hands and whisper to myself, "Gee, I hope I don't have a stress fracture" but then also roll my eyes at myself going, "For the last time, chill, you so do not have a stress fracture." But, that was before I lived through two of them, so these days they feel a lot more like a legitimate concern.
(For the idly curious: PTs guessed that the first sfx--fibula, left leg--was a result of using my left leg to compensate for worrying about the recently torn muscle in my right hip, and the second--tibia, also left leg--was a result of trying too hard to shift my form to running on the middle of the ball of my foot rather than the outside, which is more my natural tendency (and once left me with tendinitis in both feet). In neither situation was I running even *remotely* a lot, nor had I made any changes in terms of footwear or running surfaces, which I just mention because although those are the most common reasons for stress fractures, they can happen for other reasons, too.)
This pain on Tuesday and Wednesday was weird in that it definitely felt like bone pain (once you've had a bone injury you will never mistake it for anything else) and definitely felt localized to one spot, but I did not have pain while walking, running, or hopping on one leg (key sfx indicators). Also the spot felt as if it was right behind my tibia, right where the muscle attached, which made me wonder if it was some kind of weirdness where my (inevitably over-tight) calf muscles were pulling on the bone in some way and that was what was causing the pain.
Cue allllll the rolling
There was no karate on Wednesday so I'd planned an easy 8-10 miler, but given that the spot on my shin had been aching all day, I figured it was smarter to skip the run and instead take a big dose of extra calcium & then grab a nap. (Fun fact: Not sleeping enough increases your risk of stress fractures, because deep sleep is when your body releases a lot of the hormones that do the work of rebuilding tissue damage from exercise.)
Thankfully by Thursday everything felt normal, though I still felt really, really tired. (Fun fact #2: Lately I've felt like I'm running 60 miles a week rather than low to mid 40s, for which I blame stress, lack of sleep, and not eating as well as I should be largely due to lacking a kitchen.) Friday and Saturday went fine, and on Sunday I had a 14 mile long run schedule; alas, it was cut short due to basically giving myself donut poisoning that morning (don't ask) so I ended up with only 10.3 miles.
So, yeah. It's been a week!