Things Aren't Quite Going To Plan...
I'm now four weeks in to my training plan for the 2019 Cyprus Marathon in March, and my training so far hasn't exactly gone as I had hoped. I originally planned on posting this blog at the end of my fourth (successful) week of training, but unfortunately that's not the case. Not even remotely...
During week one, I decided to cancel my second run due to "Storm Diana". Excellent start. Seriously the weather was so bad that day, I really didn't think it was worth taking any risks. That day aside, the rest of week one went pretty well, with three pretty good, fast paced runs, with me clocking up an average pace of 07:26/mile over the three runs. Come the end of that week, I was feeling good, relatively happy with myself, and more than ready for week two.
Week two started much the same as the first week finished off, with me continuing my runs at a pretty good pace. I also decided that inserting a lunch time run in to my schedule was a good idea, to get some daylight, so that I'm not almost constantly running in darkness. This week was also the first time that I had ran three consecutive days in a row for as long as I can remember, and although they were all relatively short distances, I definitely felt it in my legs, and shins. However, after a day or so rest, they felt good to go on Saturday morning (the 10+ pints on the Friday evening, however, are another matter altogether!), and I headed out on a planned nine mile run - which would incidentally have been my longest run since Crathes Hall Marathon in September. All was going well, I even headed out on an un-opened section of the AWPR and had the whole dual carriageway to myself for a while, and then around the five mile mark, I felt my left calf go...OUCH.
Shortly after I'd turned to make my way back, I slipped on the slight verge between the edge of the road and the grass and was immediately met by a sharp shooting pain in my calf. I could still run, barely, but it hurt. Being out on the (un-opened) AWPR meant that I was around 1.5 miles from traffic, which meant I would need to limp my way back to civilization in order to be rescued from Kerry in the car. That mile and a half of running/limping was an extremely deflating experience - knowing that I was only two weeks in to my training, and I'd gone and hurt myself was incredibly frustrating. So, unfortunately I missed the whole of week three. My calf did start to feel slightly better by the end of of the week, but I didn't want to risk anything, so I decided against running and concentrated on stretching/foam rolling in order to ensure I was good to go for week four.
Week four came around and my calf was feeling good - the pain was still there, although it didn't really hurt. Tuesday was my scheduled day to run, and there just so happened to be a world ending storm on that day - great. Anyway, I got home from work, and thankfully the weather had started to ease up so I got changed, stretched and got ready to head out for a three mile run. For the first mile, everything was going to plan; I had my headphones in, there was no pain, I was feeling good and enjoying myself. But as I got closer to 1.5 miles, I felt it, my calf was starting to hurt...I knew what was coming. The pain came fast and sharp - not as bad as the first time, but enough to make me stop in my tracks, stop my watch, turn around and immediately start walking home. It was incredibly frustrating - I knew I'd rushed it, but I was so eager to get back out there. I really want to give a good account of myself on this marathon, and was so determined to get back on track with my training that I left no where near enough time for the injury to heal. Deflated, I limped the 1.5 miles home (coincidentally the same distance I had to limp my way back after the first time), in the rain, contemplating my next move.
I've decided that I'm going to give this injury some serious time to heal - at least four weeks I think, then I'm going to reassess the situation, and try and make the most of what training time I have left...and if it takes longer than that to heal, then so be it. I can't risk hurting myself again - I'm DETERMINED to run this marathon, and run it well.
I want to finish off by saying that running through winter is gruelling; the dark nights along with the cold winds, and rain make it really hard to stay motivated day after day. But as gruelling as it was, I'm gutted at the fact I can't get out there. So, hopefully if all goes to plan, then I'll be back, some time in January with an update for you all. In the mean time, wish me luck.
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