OK…so last Wednesday I walked from the foot of the Oakland Bay Bridge , along the embarcadero all the way over the Golden Gate to the bridge to the vista point, and then back to the Bay bridge, for a total of 16.3 miles. The weather was picture perfect and my breathing was good. Maybe a little too good.
Why do I say that? Because I was breathing so well during the walk that I went crazy and started going way too fast. The following day , my legs ,calves and shins were so sore I could barely walk, and for the first time ever, my biceps were actually cramping up on me. That’s right..my arm muscles were cramping up! My right calf muscle is still so sore that I’m going to have to skip this Sundays 10 miler.
My lungs didn’t fare too well either. Though I was breathing great during the walk, it finally caught up with me the next morning. Not as severe as the last walk, but still bad enough to make me miserable for a few days.
I think these are some of the mistakes I made.
1) I was breathing so well during the walk , that I went hog -wild and started racewalking . I know better than to racewalk during an LSD, but I did anyway. And not only did I racewalk , but I racewalked at least 10 of the 16 miles. Shame on me!
2) Rather than doing this LSD walk at a recommended pace of 18-20 min/mile, my average pace was more like 12:30 (faster than race pace).
3) I tried to break in my new racing flats . 16 miles is way to far to try out new shoes, especially racing flats .This is what probably caused the shin splints and calf pain. Instead , I should have worn shoes that had more cushioning and a higher heel , which would have not only saved my shins, would have also discouraged me from racewalking ( it’s too difficult to racewalk in running shoes).
4) I think the reason my biceps were cramping , is because of all the racewalking I did (when you racewalk, you swing your arms a lot).
5) Though I thought I was well hydrated before the walk, I didn’t count on sweating as much as I did. Following the walk, I had all the symptoms of hyponatremia . Loosing too much sodium is probably another reason why I had such a problem with muscle cramping .
6) Finally, I just plain over- did it. I jumped from 13 miles to 16 in two weeks. Too fast , too soon. My body hasn’t acclimated to the longer distances yet.
So , with all this in mind, hopefully I will do a better job with my next LSD , which is 18 miles 2 weeks from now.