I’ve had a post floating around in my head for a while now, but I just haven’t had time to put finger to keyboard. And now it seems it’s a bit late. Because things have changed. I wanted to write about how positive I’m feeling about my running this year and how well it’s been going. Then I got stopped in my tracks.
But I’m going to start at the beginning anyway. The post I wanted to write.
At the start of 2017, I was questioning whether I should ever run a half marathon again. I’d had to pull out of the 2015 Cheltenham half marathon and was close to pulling out of the 2016, both due to recurring injuries on my left side. Maybe a half marathon was just too much? Maybe I should just do 10ks instead?
My blogging friend Pink Oddy was doing the Tewkesbury half marathon in May and asked me to join her. But I couldn’t do it. I wasn’t fit enough. I wasn’t strong enough. I was stuck with my recurring injuries.
I thought about yoga and acupuncture (I already do lots of stretches after running that I learned from a physio a couple of years ago), but two factors meant I didn’t do any more than think about them. Money and time. The two things parents never have enough of.
And then I couldn’t resist signing up for Cheltenham half marathon 2017.
My training this year was a bit different. And it really worked. I was running more often and doing more miles in total, but not so many long runs. I felt fitter, stronger. I felt invincible. I loved running more than ever.
I ran the Cheltenham half marathon and was just 13 seconds outside my PB.
And, feeling fitter, stronger and invincible, I signed up for the Stroud half marathon three weeks later.
My plan was just to keep running, not to let my fitness slip back too far. Next year I would do the Tewkesbury half marathon in May, not to mention the Cheltenham half marathon and the Stroud half marathon.
But 10 days after the Stroud half marathon I went for a six mile run (or a 10k run if you prefer). Nothing out of the ordinary, just a fastish, regular training run. The sort I do several times a week.
After my run, I ached. In my bum, if you want detail. Not IN it as such. Muscular. The gluteus maximus. And on the right side. I never ache on the right side.
It ached that day and the following day, but had eased up sufficiently for me to do Parkrun the next day. And it really killed on my first few steps. I didn’t run particularly fast, but I was third female overall, which I was very pleased about.
But, oh my goodness, the pain!
I started sitting on ice a couple of times a day and by Thursday, a week after the initial injury, it had eased off sufficiently for me to tackle a four mile run.
I took three or four steps and I was literally stopped in my tracks. I’ve never felt anything like it before. I couldn’t physically run. In the past, pain has been something which is advising me to stop, it hasn’t been something which physically made me stop. It was like there was a clamp all the way round my right hip, groin and glute.
And I knew my invincibility was over for the time being. My dream of the Tewkesbury half marathon is already slipping away. There was nothing for it but physio – and crossed fingers that it can be improved fairly quickly.
I hate not running. I’m just not quite myself when I don’t run. I’m not as happy, not as energetic, not as me. I can still walk and that’s OK. But walking just isn’t running.