Training has been going well, for the most part. I'm getting stronger and faster. My form is still a mess, but it is not nearly as bad as it used to be. And I'm happy to say that I successfully completed my longest run (nine miles) to date last Sunday. I'm no longer worried about finishing my upcoming 10 mile race. Yes, I will probably run the race very slowly. But I will cross that finish line.
Sure, I've had a few aches and pains, but most of my problems have been a result of either not stretching properly or ignoring rest/recovery (not refueling properly after long runs, running too often, skipping rest days, not getting enough sleep, etc).
My main concern at the moment has to do with my breathing. Breathing has become incredibly difficult during runs. I get winded much easier than usual and can never seem to catch my breath. Even slowing down and walking doesn't seem to help very much. I end up wheezing and gasping for breath and feel as though I'm drowning because I can't seem to get a full breath of air in my lungs.
At first, this only seemed to happen during speed work. I thought that I was just pushing myself too hard or was just too out of shape.
Lately, however, it has also been occurring during my long runs and my easy runs and even just walking up the stairs at work. To make matters worse, I continue having trouble taking in a full breath up to a day after one of these incidents. The breathing problems have made me nervous about running, and I'm not enjoying my runs nearly as much as usual because of this.
Although I was able to finish my run last Sunday, I did have to stop for a moment during the last three miles because I felt as though I couldn't breathe and I started to panic. Thankfully, I was able to get my breathing back under control pretty quickly and was able to complete my run - I just finished those last couple of miles at a slightly slower pace.
My breathing problems have gotten bad enough that I've managed to overcome my intense fear of the medical profession and make an appointment with my doctor to try and find out what is happening. Wish me luck! I'm hoping for some answers. And I'm hoping the answers are that this is something simple that can easily be fixed. Just for the record, not running does not count as a solution.