Niggles And A New Approach

Despite last weekend’s experiment with Jeff Galloway’s run-walk-run method, the old injury started rearing it’s head again this week. It felt ok after last Sunday’s run, but towards the middle of the week it started niggling again, so much so that I decided to forfeit my runs on both Wednesday and Saturday, and went for a much slower but slightly longer run-walk-run this morning instead.

Conditions this morning were pretty good (cool and damp with a hint of drizzle), and while the wind did make things a bit more challenging when running West along the seafront, it did help me to keep my pace under control in the running sections. As with last weekend, I used a 3:1 run:walk ratio, but eased back on the pace by an average of 12 seconds per kilometre, which probably helped me to keep going and increase the distance to 4.5K.

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Unfortunately though, the niggle is still there, so I doubt I’ll be able to get a mid-week run in on Wednesday. This is pretty frustrating as I have already taken a couple of months off to try to sort it out, but it seems that as soon as I start running again, the injury flares up.

So, since resting it completely isn’t doing the trick, I’ve come up with a plan to try to get myself back on track:

  1. Continue to increase distance by using Run-Walk-Run once a week.
  2. Start doing exercises to strengthen the ankle and achilles.
  3. Invest in a new pair of running shoes.
  4. Introduce some cross training to replace mid-week and Saturday runs.

Usually, when it comes to cross-training, I go for a really long walk. However, I have found that this can aggravate the injury too, so I’ve decided to invest in an exercise bike instead. It’s nothing fancy. Just a cheap basic model, but hopefully it will be good enough to help me build on my general fitness without putting too much stress on the old muscles and joints.

While it is frustrating to not be able to run as much as I would like, there’s no point in taking any chances. So, I’m going to embrace the cross training, do my strengthening exercises and, with a bit of luck, I’ll be back on track soon enough.

How’s your training going? Do you cross-train as part of your exercise program? What type of cross-training works best for you? How does it help with your running and general fitness? Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments.

A Wee Short Jog

After two whole months of sitting on the sidelines, feeling miserable about being injured and not being able to run, I finally decided this morning to tie on my running shoes and go for a wee short jog along the seafront.

Getting back into running after a such a long break isn’t as easy as you might think. Even though I’d missed it like crazy and was itching to get back out there and start working on my half marathon training, I was nervous. I knew I wouldn’t be able to do what I could do two months ago and that there would be a fair bit of catching up to do, and that bothered me. I was scared that I wouldn’t be able to do it.

Silly, I know, but there you have it.

In the end though, I realised that the only way to get back on track was to get up, get dressed and get out the door. That was always the hardest part back in the days of C25K and even then, when I could barely run for 60 seconds, I always felt better about it once I got going. It was just a case of getting out there.

So, a little after 8:00 am, I headed for the seafront for a wee short jog. There was no plan, no expectation, no training goal to aim for. Whether I ran or run/walked, it didn’t matter. If I managed a kilometre, I would be happy; if I did five, it would be a miracle. I just wanted to have fun and see what I could do.

Surprisingly, I managed to do more than I thought I would. Ok, so I had some walk breaks but I completed 3K without too much trouble.

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I did consider jogging back home to clock up another kilometre, but with narrow uneven pavements and the prospect of dodging pedestrians and dog walkers, I thought better of it. No point in risking a rolled ankle at this stage, right?

Besides, I’d been for a run. And that was all I needed, for now at least.

How’s your training going? How do you motivate yourself you get back out there after a long break from running? Please share your thoughts in the comments.