Regardless of who you are or where you are in your running stage, everyone has their own running superhero power and kryptonite. Running Superhero power is whatever trait or skill that is your strongest one in terms of running. Kryptonite is your weakest.
There are all sorts of running superheros powers: sheer talent, ability to withstand high mileage training, speedy recovery, never/rarely gets sick, mental fortitude, ability to train in heat and humidity, nailing a pace without a GPS watch, etc. And there are many kryptonites: injury prone, mentally gives up too easily, lacks discipline, bad racing strategy (e.g., positive splits), poor diet, overwhelming life/work responsibilities, not enough sleep, etc.
My running superhero power is that I’m injury resistant. In the six years that I’ve been running, I’ve had only one major running injury and that was five years ago. After my first year of running, I had plantar fasciitis, so I had to lay off running for a couple of months. I had a touch of plantar fasciitis a year after that, but it wasn’t as serious and I just had to reduce mileage for about a month. Since then, I haven’t had a single major injury. No stress reactions. No IBS. No sprains. Nothing. Once in a while I feel a niggle here or there, but it literally goes away in seconds. I feel quite lucky in the fact that I can train without worrying if I’ll get injured.
My kryptonite, however, is slow recovery. It seriously takes me a long time to recover from hard races and hard training runs. I just don’t bounce back as quickly as some people. And I don’t mean this in comparing myself to younger runners. I recover more slowly than runners my own age too. It took me about a couple of months before I felt like myself after CIM (I don’t mean that I couldn’t run or even start doing some speed work again. I could. Nothing hurt, but I just didn’t feel 100% like myself.). Work and stress take a toll on me and I don’t recover well enough from a night of sleep that I’m able to put in the same type of hard effort as I could if I weren’t experiencing a ton of stress or working long hours. As mileage increases, I fatigue more quickly than the average runner and I need more recovery days/time than the average runner. In past training cycles, as I feel myself lagging, I’ve asked Leah to give me more recovery by either reducing mileage or giving me an extra rest day.
This was a fun little exercise to think about when assessing my strengths and weaknesses as a runner.
Tell me what your running superhero power and kryptonite are.