Wednesday, 13 September 2017

Running Update



I managed not to do any running for five whole days last week, then physio Steve ruined it all by declaring me fit to run, and telling me he wanted me to get back out there. So, on Saturday I went out for a very cautious one mile trot up and down the lane. No knee pain, which made it tentatively OK to unexpectedly run in walking boots and jeans around the New Forest on Sunday morning chasing our friend Old Richard (as opposed to our friend Young Richard), who was running the NF Half. He wasn't expecting to see us and his face was an absolute picture when we popped up at mile 6 as he was trudging wearily up a forest track with hundreds of other runners towards the Rhinefield Ornamental Drive. We yelled and cheered and I bounced up and down doing my best, most enthusiastic, Tigger impression, and he went on with more of a spring in his stride. 

Hurtling back to the car, we realised if we zoomed across the forest we could meet him again at mile 10, so we did, dodging the full marathon runners who by then had clocked up 22 miles and were looking like they had. We arrived with seconds to spare. Mile ten can be a bit of a killer on a half marathon, and sure enough Rich was plodding a bit at that stage but he looked good and gave us a huge grin and thumbs up when he saw us and once more picked his pace up. We stayed for a bit to cheer on the other runners through the drizzle, one chap came over for a high-five (happens a lot in races), before heading home. M got a text later to say that Rich had set a new PB and how much it had helped him seeing our faces en route. Excellent.

I did a slow 6 mile run with our Club on Monday which went fine, and then took the dogs out for a 5k around the fields this morning. Knee was a bit achy but essentially OK and there was no pain or stiffness afterwards.

Judy B, ace sports massage therapist and general wonder-woman (she's a caver who crawls through the tiniest subterranean tunnels to reach magnificent chambers where rivers run, she used to run ultra marathons of 80 plus miles, and last week she and her hubby decided to cycle to Lulworth (6 hours), go for a swim, have a few nights there to walk the coastal path from dawn to dusk and cycle home again- I am in total awe of her), gave my leg a thorough going over on Tuesday and couldn't find anything that suggested a permanent knee problem. She did say that the muscle definition around the knee is weak compared to the rest of it, which backs up Physio Steve's assessment.

So, I've got the go-ahead to run the Winchester Half in a fortnight (which you may remember was the race that started this running malarkey back in September last year), but.....drum roll please......and brace yourselves for a shock at how sensible I'm being......I've decided not to do it.

This was partly down to driving the route this morning and realising what interminably long, dull, never-ending stretches of unforgiving tarmac it's comprised of (I would find this mentally a killer to run), and partly because I feel in my gut it's too soon to be doing another HM.

My knee is progressing well and the daily exercises are strengthening the muscles that support it (by God they hurt so they must be working), and I can now hold plank for two full minutes without my arms shaking like they're made of jelly or my back collapsing- this is a big improvement as when I started I lasted all of ten seconds before my entire body was wobbling desperately- but despite Steve's assurances that I need to test it, I just feel running 13 miles on tarmac in 10 days time is too soon.

So what to do instead? I've an off road 10k (6 miles) this weekend, another the weekend after and if they go well, the weekend after that it's the Clarendon Half, which, being hilly, off road and through some really beautiful countryside is much more my cup of tea than pounding long grey roads with three thousand others.

It's a funny thing when you decide to let a goal go that you've had as a focus for months. I thought I would be gutted, but instead I feel empowered by the decision. My running means much more to me than the completion of one half marathon (probably helped by the fact I've done four this year) and I don't want to risk the recovery of my knee by running longer distances than it can yet cope with. Gosh, how sensible I am becoming in my old age :o)

So that's the news from here. I am persevering with the exercises and very grateful to be able to be back out running again, but I'm taking it steadily.

In other news, L is enjoying his first week at sixth form college. He's up at 7 (unheard of) and out the door for the bus at 7.20. This means I also have to be up earlier than normal and three days in it's catching up with me. Both my men fell asleep on public transport yesterday, M coming home from London and L on the bus. Perhaps I need to start travelling on buses and trains so I can also have a nap during the day and then not be knackered by nine pm?

I got L a set of lock-picks (his suggestion) for his 16th. He has taken them in to college and apparently everyone on his tutor table is very interested in them. I've had a go- it's not as easy as it looks. This is probably a good thing, because while he's occupied with figuring out the padlock they came with my front door remains safe and unpicked. He's been threatening to take his hip flask in but I think we've managed to persuade him that pretending cranberry juice is red wine in your first week might be a joke too far for the college authorities.

Hope you're all well?

CT :o)

21 comments:

  1. Cracking birthday gifts, especially the lock picks. So glad your knee is doing well and that you're out running again. Steve is very encouraging isn't he. Love that you went to cheer on your friend in his race, what a lovely thing to do. Good luck for the weekend race. CJ xx

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    1. L usually manages to go for unusual presents :o). Yes, good old Steve. He's been a god send xx

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  2. Goodness take care of that knee !

    cheers, parsnip

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  3. What an unusual present! It's great that there are so many runs to choose from and amazing that a year has gone by already since you started, I wonder how many miles you've run altogether. x

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    1. I have been keeping a note of them all but haven't totted them all up yet! X

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  4. So glad that your knee is getting better and I think that it's very wise to avoid the Winchester HM. What fantastic presents - I bet that L will be in great demand when people invariably lose their locker keys or lock them inside! xx

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    1. I think so too- caution feels sensible at this time x

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  5. Glad to hear the good news. I agree about the Winchester HM. You have nothing to prove now as you've already achieved your goal from last September. Can't believe that year has gone by since I read your very empowering post:). Love the sound of L's presents, clearly a character! Take it slow and steady and I'm sure the Clarendon will be a doddle and much more of a 'you' run. B x

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    1. Thanks my dear. How's your running going? Xx

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  6. Hey CT,
    I've pencilled on my first run since the long school holiday for Sun morning. Early. A gentle 5k to get back into the swing of it. You are wise not to do a flat, tarmac run. Uphill and down dale, scrabbling in places and great scenarios are much better running conditions! I think it suits you (and I) much better.
    Leanne xx

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    1. Ooh! I bet you can't wait. You'll so love being back out there. I agree- off road is much more fun (although a good friend of mine can't stand it and much prefers the tarmac).

      I have got a moth for Olly, just trying to work out how best to post it! Xx

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  7. It's this stiffness in my legs that is making running very slow for me at the moment, feeling a bit chubby at the moment thus!

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    1. The first few runs back after a break are always the hardest. Good luck.

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  8. I'm so glad your knee is better and good on you for making a hard decision. It is very brave and sensible, definitely an act of empowerment. Your sports therapist sounds like an interesting woman to say the least.I can't get my head around 80+. Lock picks???? xxx

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    1. She's an amazing woman. Very quiet and unassuming. I couldn't believe some of the things she has done/ does. Thanks for the apple and rosemary jelly suggestion- am going to make some this weekend. Sounds delicious! Hope all's well with all of you (lock picks were only got on the agreement no actual house locks would be experimented on!) xx

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  9. The goals come and go. And some, like David Beckham we miss.
    I've just lost €30 prepaid entry fee as I can't get to the start line on the day of my planned half marathon. But like you, I'll soon be feeling "empowered". Now, there's a word! The spirit of Invictus haunts these pages.

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    1. Indeed! Onward and upward. There's always another race :o).

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  10. now that i'm a veteran runner of (ahem) six days, i can safely state that it would do my head in to have to run that far on tarmac. ugh. definitely the up-hill-down-dale-scramble for me. although, to be fair, i'm still shuffling along the road....only because it's ragweed season and i don't fancy stirring The Pollens unnecessarily.:)

    and tarmac is very unforgiving on the olde jointes...so good on you for picking something else instead :) i look forward to the day when i'm picking races....*laughs hysterically*

    xoxoxo

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    1. It won't be long before you are picking races....XX

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Thank you for leaving a comment. I always enjoy reading them and will try my best to reply to every one. CT x