After last week - here’s how week 7 panned out....
The plan was: speed session – 7 x 800 meters; tempo run – 8 miles; long run – 17 miles.
Last week was one of those where with work and kids to juggle it was hard to know where the runs were going to slot in. I wanted to give my hip as much as a rest as possible before I attempted a speed session so started the week with my tempo run. This was going to have to be done on Tuesday morning after the kids went off to school and before I went to work (which was going to make me very late but as I’m my own boss I can get away with it!).
I’d been icing and stretching since last Sundays run plus taking ibuprofen; but it was clear as soon as I started running on Tuesday that my hip wasn’t happy and there was going to be nothing ‘tempo’ about the run. I also knew that 8 miles wasn’t looking likely either. In the end I did 5 miles at a dismally slow pace and called it a day.
Clearly I needed to give it a little longer to settle so decided to do no further running until the weekend. I would do a park run on the Saturday instead of the speed session then my long run (hopefully) on the Sunday. This would give me 3 clear days without running.
I was still pretty chilled as I was confident that it wasn’t serious and with some TLC and reduced mileage I’d soon be fine.
Come Saturday my hip felt fine – but the problem has been that I wouldn’t know until I start running whether it would be OK. And as soon as I started running I knew it was not OK. This wasn’t helped by the fact that parkrun was a mud bath. I wasn’t in pain as such; just discomfort. And it was enough to make me abandon the run after 1 ½ miles.
Now I was no longer feeling chilled L. I’ve so desperately wanted to stick to my plan and I couldn’t decide what to do about my 17 miles the next day. Long story short I did a long session of yoga stretches on Saturday evening and massaged my hip with a tennis ball (thanks for the tip Max!). I decided to set out on Sunday to see what would happen and promised myself that I would stop at the first sign of any pain so as not to aggravate it. But to my utter surprise my hip felt almost absolutely fine!! I knew it was there but that was all. It didn’t come close to being painful throughout the whole run. In fact I didn’t notice it at all in the final 5 miles but that’s because it paled into insignificance with the generally fatigue I was feeling all over!
On the whole I enjoyed the run but it did start feeling tough at around 12 miles. By the last mile I was so exhausted that I think I’d gone into a state of delirium. Heaven knows what I must have looked like to the people that I passed! But that’s 17 miles nailed. It was very slow but considering I didn’t think I’d even be able to do one mile I’m very pleased with that! It’s 2 more miles than last week and the most I’ve ran in over 1 ½ years.
This last couple of weeks has been a sharp reminder that the road to marathon glory is not linear. It would be wonderful if we could have a clear 16 weeks without work or domestic commitments; injury; or illness. There are plenty of bumps and obstacles along the way and half of the battle is how we deal with them.
I will keep up with the treatment but am feeling hopeful that I can get back on track now. It’s a step back week coming up too which helps - ‘only’ 13 miles for the long run this weekend. We’re doing an organised trail half marathon on Sunday which should be fun.
I hope everyone else is doing OK.
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