Everything is falling into place and I am feeling better in myself than I can remember. I have a job I thoroughly enjoy, so much so that I actually look forward to going to work on a Monday morning! I do also love my weekends but I like to get stuck into my week day routines. And my training is at a level where my fitness is exactly where I wanted it to be before I progressed to the next stage of introducing some quality swim and run sessions.
The slight snag is that my left hip is giving me a few problems that I need to address before I can safely say I am injury free. It started just over a week ago but, with many of the other niggles I’ve been getting as I have progressed my strength and alignment training, I continued with a reduced mileage run plan to see if it settled. It didn’t, and on Sunday I had to admit defeat and cut a run short.
The positive part, though, was that Sunday was the second day in a row of running – possibly for the first time in over a year – and I had no reaction whatsoever in regards to the original injury. I am referring to the shin splints here, although it is difficult to know what the original actually was.
Over my years of doing sports massage I saw many cases of the ‘unwinding process’. This is where the troublesome area is treated and a similar symptom presents elsewhere. Whilst I am a firm advocate of addressing the cause of the problem (in my case, poor alignment and untreated mental health issues), if the body spends many a year compensating for the cause, you end up with a whole heap of issues building up that need addressing in some way.
This recent hip issue is exactly the same as I had a couple of years ago but on the opposite side. I don’t recall having hip issues prior to 2015 but I do remember suffering with ‘runners knee’ on the left side in 2004. At the time I saw a massage therapist who kindly massages my knee, but as I now know, this would have done absolutely nothing as the problem would have stemmed from my hip area….the one I am now having problems with.
I have taken this week off running and reintroduced the hip exercises I was given two years ago. I shouldn’t necessarily have continued with them all this time, but I can definitely feel the areas working again! Instead of running I am using the turbo to do similar type sessions, e.g. today should have been a tempo session: three minutes of speedier running within a 30 minute run, so I did 30 minutes on the bike and put the gears up for three minute intervals.
I was amazed at how my fitness has improved. My last session on the bike was November last year, but I was struggling for fitness from September/October time. Below are screenshots of a 30 minute turbo at the beginning of October (the top two) and today. My HR was pretty similar, but today I covered more than two extra miles as part of an interval session versus a flat ride five months ago.
The downside is that I may have to reconsider this not cycling malarkey as I actually quite enjoyed that session.
Anyway, back to running. I am hopeful that a week off with some cycling and specific hip exercises will see me running solidly again….I feel I am so close to being back to my old self and am quite looking forward to what the summer may bring. I am entered into Eastleigh 10k on 19th March, which actually would have been my Grandad’s 99th birthday….it would be wonderful to be able to run and enjoy that for him.
I have several ‘goals’ for that day depending on how the next 10 days go. I am not going to detail them all but they range from running a comfortable PB (this is more achievable than it sounds given I have only ever done one hilly 10k race in my life in 2012 – 56:something – and Eastleigh is flat) to getting to the start line. Not necessarily completely injury free, just to the start line. I have entered this race several times and never actually run it so I have a reasonable chance at achieving at least one goal if this week goes well!
I’ll keep you posted!