Getting My Legs Back

Circle HopIt has been three weeks since my last run. I didn’t really plan on having such a long break after the marathon. I wasn’t particularly broken or injured afterwards – just a bit of tightness and discomfort, but I guess my body needed a bit of a rest after all those month of training.

Today though, I decided that I had rested enough and that it was time to dust of my running shoes and get back out there.

I’d been using a run-walk-run strategy for the last few months to help get me through the marathon without injury, but I really wanted to get back to running continuously without walk breaks again. I wasn’t sure how my body would cope with this, so I set myself a target of 2-3K of continuous running for this morning, depending on how things went, and planned to gradually build up to 5K over the next few weeks.

It was nice and cool when I headed to the seafront just after 7:00 am. There was a bit of a breeze, but nothing to worry about, as I set off along Hove Lawns to the cafe just before Peace Statue. The plan was to run there and back, which would be pretty much 2K, and then maybe do a bit more if I felt like it.

As I had no clue as to how I would manage this, I started off nice and slowly, pretty much ignoring the Garmin and just running by feel. And it felt pretty good, so much so that as I approached the 2K mark, I decided to keep going for another half kilometre.

According to the Garmin, my pace was picking up a bit too, although I couldn’t really feel it. In terms of running by feel, the effort was consistent and comfortable, so I continued to ignore the Garmin and keep going to 3K, then 3.5K.

After that, however, I did start to feel a bit tired so, not wanting to push things too hard on my first post-marathon run, I decided that I would stop when I got to 4K.

I felt really good afterwards and pleased that I had managed much more than I’d expected. The left hamstring was a bit uncomfortable and my calf started to tighten up as I walked home, but it was nothing compared to what I’d been having before, so maybe the three weeks of rest wasn’t such a bad idea after all.

The most surprising thing about the run though, was that I managed to run negative splits for each kilometre. I hadn’t expected that at all, but perhaps it was just my legs waking up after their rest.

2015-05-02_Splits

How’s your training going? How much time off do you take after a big race? Please share your thoughts in the comments.

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3 thoughts on “Getting My Legs Back”

  1. well done on getting back into it! my running coach says the first run post mara is always ugly, but it pays to push through, then the next run is usually awesome. I ran 5km 4 days after my first marathon, then again 2 days later.
    It probably depends on how you’ve pulled up to be honest!!

    I think I progressed to 10 km 2 weekends after that, then the 3rd weekend half mara distance (or 2 hours) – coach said to run for 2 hours every alternate weekend thereafter if you want to keep the distance in your legs – the upside is you don’t have to train for a half marathon again, as you’re always good to go!

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