This is a first for me. I have always taken one rest day from running every week, when I would swim, bike or do nothing.
I feel great! My legs feel great.
These runs have mostly been within my aerobic zone, with the exception of a few progressions, 2 tempos, and regular strides. One or two weekly runs are done within my recovery heart rate zone. I have not done any intervals, or really hard running (with one exception, a time trial) and my longest run has been only 16 miles.
Why did I not get injured?
Honestly, I think I am not injury prone. I think I have a pretty efficient stride, and am just lucky. I don't do anything special to stay healthy. I do eat well most of the time, and I do sleep a lot (9+hours this week as I am nursing a "who knows what bug"). I also do a lot of plyometrics and strength now, to ensure that my glutes don't get lazy again. I have not been doing anything crazy, like running on super tired legs, increasing mileage and intensity at once, you know, common sense stuff.
Many people do what I do and get injured. And it is frustrating. I think many believe that getting injured means that you messed up somewhere in your training. I think that is BS. Messing up most likely correlates with training, but it does not always lead to injury, just as not messing up can lead to injury. Messing up can be stigmatizing, it can mean that you are to blame for the injury, and that is just not right and not helping.
I think it all comes down to finding your own recipe for injury free running. Sure, if you run easy all the time, you will not get injured, and that is fine as long as that is your goal. But in order to get to your potential as a runner, you need to push your limits, you need to find your limits. Looking back at my past injuries, I know that they were all "mess ups"; I do not blame myself for them, however, because I did not know that I was messing up at that time. I have never gotten an injury that puzzled me and had no idea where it came from. And I learned from my injuries, at least I think I did (my coach might disagree with this one, ha!). So, I don't really know my limit thus far...how many miles a week I can handle, how many key workouts/week I can do, how many runs/week would be safe for me? I am very interested in finding answers to these questions, because, even though there is a risk in finding your limits (aka injury), in my book the benefits outweigh the risks! I have seen how quickly I came back from injury (and much faster!), and what a great learning experience that was for me (realizing that there are other things that I can focus on besides running).
I have no idea how long my streak will continue. I know coach has a plan to break me and then rest me well, so that I absorb all this training. Until that happens, I am running happy hoping I will not find my limit any time soon:)