I’m seriously thinking about ankle-replacement surgery. My ankle is so stiff every morning that I have difficulty walking down steps and down my driveway to get the paper. I have my weekly contests to determine which is the better pain reliever — Advil or Aleve — which I take everyday (Aleve is winning).
I even lament walking steep downhills; they make me painfully “roll” my left foot and ankle a bit more I do walking flat stretches or uphill. I sometimes walk diagonally downhill to lessen the impact (no joke).
So what am I doing walking a marathon on June 25? Good question, for sure.
At any rate, the Rock ‘n Roll Seattle Marathon will be my 21st and final marathon, I have determined. No need to keep doing an activity I’m no longer able to enjoy or do at full strength.
I thought walking races would be an easy transition from running (which I really miss!) road races for 10 years. It hasn’t been all that bad. But walking seems much more boring for me than running. It’s also more time-consuming, less effective at managing weight, and, in recent months, somewhat painful.
I have been doing more and more of my workouts on a stationary bike, and am looking forward to getting a new bike as a Father’s Day present. Though I don’t expect to ever stop walking for exercise, I don’t feel a need to do another marathon post-June 25. Things could change, but I doubt it.
If I have trouble getting adjusted to sitting on a bicycle seat for several hours at a time, I may change my mind. Or, if I do replace my ankle, we’ll see what exercise opportunities that might bring. I need to do something to stay fit. (I’ve been told not to expect to be able to run again; an ankle implant is a metal contraption placed where your ankle is, or was, that is vulnerable to pounding.)
In the meantime, how is my marathon training going? Up and down. Some days, walking hurts; other days, I’m just fine. Yesterday, May 29, I walked 15.5 miles on the Sammamish River trail, with no problems. So I am encouraged. Three weeks earlier, I did the Kirkland Half-Marathon Walk, also with no problems. I plan at least one more long walk, along with numerous shorter walks and cardio-training on the stationary bike.
I should be OK for this marathon, but a key will be how much I can jog. The ability to jog at least three miles helped me finish my last and only other marathon walk in 7:31 — which is slow, indeed, but a time I will gladly accept this time around.
If I can’t jog at all, it could be a very long walk, and a very long day. I might be still walking when all of the race organizers go to bed. Hopefully, I can cross the finish line before they take it down.
Till next time.