Thursday, 14 October 2010

Cracks In The Clouds

Every runner gets injured. Even the ones who say they haven’t probably have and the ones that say they have definitely have. I am probably like everyone in that I go through stages of unrest after an injury has hit. The stages are denial, rage, depression, acceptance and renewed neurotic disequilibrium. Okay, so I got that from a book but it is just about right. Denial: I tried to run 10 miles whilst sort of knowing that my knee was shot. Rage: when I got back to the house I shouted at the dog for getting in my way and got angry at the freezer for hiding the ice. Depression: made myself a massive sympathy lunch which included chewy sweets and two packets of crisps. Acceptance: well I’m writing this blog entry aren’t I? And I don’t know what the last one is but I guess I’ll cover that tomorrow.

Of course, there is another stage to this process. The stage is blind bloody fear at the fact I have my first marathon in two weeks and I can’t even run a mile. Brilliant.

Throughout the year I’ve had a few niggles here and there. In fact the worse lay off through injury was done playing football when I busted my hamstrings. I have had to stop training just through tiredness but not really through injury. Nothing more than a few days. So, I am having a hard time at the moment through little injuries that are stopping me from running. Now, like I’ve said every runner gets injured so I am not going to whine. Sure, I feel annoyed and worried but I am not going to moan and complain. Shit happens.

However, I am going to do some detective work. I want to find out why my legs have been falling apart. I was running well up until a month ago then the wheels came off. So what exactly is wrong?

1. Plantar Faciitis on my left foot that was only getting worse. It went away but then came back after a week and seems to take 3-4 days to clear enough to run on.

2. My knee is a bit buggered. I went for a slow and easy seven mile yesterday which was very relaxing. Afterwards, I noticed a pain on the outside of my left knee which was exaggerated whenever I walked downstairs. Today, I started a 10 mile run and discovered pretty quickly that the knee was fucked. I was reduced to hobbling back through the front door. A sheepish 0.7 of a mile.

3. I have a continuing tightness in my right hamstring and both calf muscles. In fact, pain seems to come and go all over my legs. It isn’t too bad but it does make any running uncomfortable at one stage or other.

Right then, on to the reasons.

1. My last good, strong run was 20 miles. I ran it faster and more comfortably than I expected and it is possible that this just knackered my legs. It is only the second time I have run that far and maybe it just took too much out of me.

2. After that 20 mile run I changed my shoes. My old shoes were quite worn and had covered about 550 miles. With the unused cushioning, the new shoes feel quite different and I can feel that my gait is slightly changed when running in them.

3. The third reason could just be simple overtraining. I have only been doing 3-4 sessions per week but in those sessions I have been working very hard. I might just need to reduce the intensity of my hard sessions.

I would not like to say that there is one particular reason but in all probability a mixture of all three. With a marathon in two weeks I need to sort this out quickly. Two of the problems sort themselves out. I am not doing any more long runs or intense sessions before the marathon. On the shoe front, I am going to start using my old shoes again. I don’t have the time to get my gait analysed and work out if the new shoes are the main source of the problem. I am going to stick with what I know.

With regards to my recuperation I am not going to do any running for the next few days. I will do some gentle cross training and see how I am at the weekend. I have to stay sensible, take each day at a time and try not start climbing up the walls. Rest, ice, compression and elevation seems to be tried and tested. I now have a very cold knee.

I might get a haircut. That should make me lighter on my feet. It is difficult to run sensibly with a massive ginger afro.


Post a Comment