It was the running equivalent of panic-buying, like when everyone feels the need to buy several loaves of bread and a gallon of milk because the shops are closing for one day at Christmas.
But the message was loud and clear – a tweet from one of my local newspapers that only 800 places remain for the Birmingham International Marathon and therefore if you’re interested, pull your finger out.
I am, of course, very interested, although in my head I wanted to wait until I could be sure I’m recovered from this injury to my adductors before committing. The impending deadline has forced my hand and so this morning I duly filled out my online entry form. 26.2 in my home city this October, here I (hopefully) come.
As for the injury, it’s a very slow recovery. I am aware of the strain pretty much every day and the feeling is nigh-on constant. I say ‘feeling’ because it isn’t pain as such, but just an awareness that all is not right.
My twice-daily stretch routine on physio orders is probably the reason why it isn’t subsiding and he assures me this is normal. He also says it’s OK to keep running (which I have been) as long as the mileage is low (which it has been).
I had my second appointment last week and I explained my concerns, namely why am I still having issues. In a nutshell he said I need to condition the muscle and build strength back up. Yes I could stop doing anything to it and, in couple of weeks probably, all would appear fine. But the likelihood of it going again is far greater.
So I’ll stick with the stretching for now and trying to keep good warm up and cool down discipline when running which, truth be told, has never been my strong point. We’ve agreed to chat again over the phone in a fortnight and then it’s up to me if I want further treatment, which all comes at a cost of course.
Running-wise, I have started following the marathon improver plan I mentioned in my last update. It started with three runs a week up to four miles each and is now at four a week. I’m still in pretty good shape and can easily run sub 8s for my miles, but I’m consciously trying not to in order to minimise the exertion on my thigh.
I did something a bit different over the weekend which was a five mile trail run. It was a chance to explore somewhere new as I was attending a charity dragon boat race over at Himley Park near Dudley. After our team was knocked out in the heats (my strength is clearly in my legs, not my arms!) I laced up and took myself off for a run around the grounds.
The weather was gorgeous and it was nice to be in different surroundings. There was a steep climb at one point but the views – and peace and tranquillity – were definitely worth it. Who wants to be messing about on a river anyway?!
And so for the second time this year I am going into marathon mode, swapping winter training for a sizzling, sweaty summer routine. Let’s just hope lightening doesn’t strike twice and I can have a fair crack at this one. Fingers and toes crossed.
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