As a runner, coming back from injury can be quite traumatic. I find that when you start running again you can feel ultra sensitive to any slight twinge in the affected area and sometimes I find I can be over cautious.
This week I had booked two races. On Tuesday was the Jane Tomlinson Canal run and on Friday the East Leeds 10K, both of these races being scenic off-road flat courses around the canals and lakes. I had seen the physio on the Friday before and he suggested a gradual easing back into running so I cancelled my Canal Run entry and marshalled instead. It was an amazing evening because two of the women from my running club won prizes! I had decided not to run the 10K on Friday but after going out for a few trial runs in the week, the little devil on my left shoulder said “oh go on what the hell!”.
So it was with a few nerves I parked up near the RSPB visitor centre at the St Aidan’s nature reserve on Friday at about 6 PM. It gave me a huge sense of pride to, as one of our club’s captains, award the trophies to our two prize winners from the Canal run on Tuesday: Jen and Jo-Anne (since they were not able to collect them on the night), so that lessened the nerves slightly.
I had set myself one simple objective, to get round. It wouldn’t matter how fast or slow I went and that to run-walk around would be totally acceptable. It was with this thought that I gently jogged out from the start. I felt OK because my fitness obviously hadn’t gone back that much and my feet were pain free and by half way I still felt good. At half way, just before a beautiful causeway that crosses one of St Aidan’s lakes, there was a drink station so I stopped (yes really stopped) to have a proper drink of water (it was a warm evening). I then got going again.
With about 2 miles to go I could see two of my club members ahead and I thought it might be a good idea to catch them. Therefore, because I still felt pretty good I decided to “go for it” in the last two miles. With about a mile to go, I caught up with Louise and this was a moment which made me feel good about my run and raised a smile. Another of our runners (Richard) was about 25 yards ahead and I asked Louise if she was gaining on him. When she said “no” I said that I would go ahead and catch him. Someone running alongside Louise said with astonishment (something like) “is he serious?” and I know it was a very small thing but I knew then that I was back!
I did manage to pass Richard and afterwards, I think I had got away with it and not made my injury worse. I also managed a steady parkrun this morning so it’s now time to take a rest. Marathon in October, can I be serious? Who knows, only time will tell.
“Give careful thought to the paths for your feet and be steadfast in all your ways.”
Proverbs 4:26 NIVUK