This week I now find myself back at the title of my blog, except my challenge is not now how fast can I run 5k but whether I can run 5k at all. After an hour with the Physio consisting of a series of assessments, an explanation of the diagnosis and how to move forward, my response to ‘do you have any questions?’ was naturally ‘can I do May Day?’
He was quite rightly reluctant to give me an answer on this until he has seen how I respond to the rehab sessions set for me over the week but the ‘if you respond well over the next week then you should have no problems completing 5k although you may be sore afterwards’ was interpreted as a ‘yes, go for it’.
The diagnosis was lots of contributing factors leading to an overload on the injured hip caused by a weakness on both – stability on one side and extension on the other creating an imbalance in the way that I walk and run. It sounds rather complicated but this is definitely the preferred outcome to just one sinister issue. So armed with a rehab programme, I left feeling very happy and positive about getting back running…apart from him using the word ‘jog’ on my rehab sheet…I really don’t know why this word bothers me so much…
He did, however, redeem himself by telling me I had perfect feet for running 😀 Well, I don’t actually think he used the word perfect but that was obviously what he meant…my arch and toe functions make up a great running movement which clearly made my day! He also confirmed my suspicions that I do in fact have a 100% neutral gait and not an overpronating one and therefore have been wearing the wrong trainers. It is unlikely that this fact solely caused this injury given the weaknesses he discovered but it certainly wouldn’t have helped.
So onto the rehab. I am delighted to say that today I completed the first session on my feet in over two months. I am not sure I can call it a run session just yet given it involved more walking than running but it was still a full session nonetheless. This run/walk interval session totalling 6 minutes of running and 12 minutes of walking did challenge me more than I thought it would, but I was pleased to discover that the hardest part of it was finding somewhere flat to complete it!
On my short walk back home after the session I may have discovered the reason it turned out to be more of a workout than I had expected….I think maybe the use of the word ‘jog’ was supposed to reflect a relatively slow pace and not the 8:20mm one that the watch indicated afterwards, which is only marginally slower than my 5k PB pace…oops! I was very consistent though with every run being exactly the same pace, even if it was probably a tad too quick for my first session back…will I ever learn…
The important bit though should surely be that whilst I could feel my hip reacting to doing some running again, it wasn’t painful. Any tightness had subsided completely within a couple of hours of the session, which is what I was to expect. The next session will be similar but increasing the run slightly with a follow up at the Physio on Friday where I will learn the full prognosis for May Day – we all know I am going to do it but whether I am advised to run the 5k part or run/walk it is yet to be confirmed!
However, I have surpassed my expectations so much on the bike in the last few months that I fully intend to be racing the swim and the bike elements at May Day to see what I am capable of when I am back run fit again. A month ago I completed a 14.7 mile loop in 77 minutes…yesterday I completed 15.5 miles slightly extending the same route in 65 minutes which is not only more than 10 minutes quicker than a month ago but nearly a mile further which must equate to knocking about 15 minutes off!
I have no idea if this is good or not and it may just sound impressive as I would never reduce my run times in this way, but my confidence is certainly building on the bike. Even more surprisingly I will actually embrace the hills (once I find the right gear), it’s just the coming down the other side I am still a bit unsure of, which is weirdly exactly the same way I run hills! So with a fairly undulating bike course I can’t not do May Day even if I have to walk the 5k at the end.
But mainly I have to do May Day so that I can wear the new HERC Triathlon kit which I tried out yesterday and was awesome!