Since I’ve recently started seeing progress in my recovery from IT Band Syndrome, I figured now might be a good time to develop some sort of plan as I move forward with running. What got me into this whole mess originally was training for last year’s LA Marathon way too fast after about a month of barely running at all. My body was out of whack, and on top of that, I wasn’t stretching nearly as much as I should have been following my runs. Some things you just have to learn the hard the way, I guess.
The foundation of my new plan to get back into running is to be smart by increasing my mileage at a safe rate and according to how my body feels. I’m not going to sign up for a race – be it marathon or 5K – anywhere in the near future. Since I’m apparently much more confident in my body’s ability to train than it actually is, I know I need to take it super slow and not have a pending race/event causing me to push myself harder than I know I should.
Two weeks ago, I ran 1.37 miles. It was such a beautiful moment because I haven’t been able to run more than a mile in an entire. freaking. year. Then last Sunday, I reached a whopping 1.81 miles, and I was so blissfully happy. Everything feels so backwards because at one point, I considered a 12-mile run short, and now I near 2 miles and am amazed at my distance. Life is funny sometimes. 😉
As I keep testing my progress each week, I’m going to work towards following “The 10% Rule.” This is one of the most recommended strategies for increasing mileage and avoiding injury. Is it right for everyone? No. Is it a good strategy to try to follow? I think so. The rule dictates that every week, you only want to up your total mileage by 10%. So if I were running 10 total miles over the course of, let’s say, 3 runs, the following week I’d run 11 miles total…and the next week a little over 12.
Obviously, right now I’m barely running at all, so this 10% rule is more of a future goal. At this point, I’m going to do the following:
- Keep running until right before I sense my knee hurting (keeping track of my progress)
- Add a second run in the week (and eventually a third)
- Stretch and foam roll at least once or twice every day
I’m thinking once I’m able to reach 3 miles, I’ll officially start following the 10% rule. Something different about how I’m going to follow this strategy though: my first priority is listening to my body. If my IT Band and body in general feels fine, I’ll keep running until I reach the designated 10% increase for the week. I’m not going to push my body to that point if I don’t think I should. If I have to baby my IT Band because it’s stubborn, then so be it. One of these days, I WILL be back running like normal.
And let me tell you…I will do everything in my power to prevent ITBS from developing again because this girl needs to run!!
Do you follow the 10% rule? If not, how do you add mileage to your runs?