Well that’s what it seems like sometimes.
Nine days after my operation I went to see my Physio (Jason Ellis), he checked me out to see how I was recovering, he tested my strength and flexibility, all looked good, so he set me a pretty intense rehabilitation program. Jason knows me very well now and knows whatever he tells me to do, I’ll stick to (and push it). So with this in mind I left the clinic with a positive feeling and a program in my hand.
For those of you who might not be familiar with Nordic Track, Nordic track is a cross country ski machine. It looks quite basic, it has a metal frame with wooden removable ski’s and string and pullies for the handles. The benefits of the Nordic are that it is as close to running that you can get without any impact. It takes good core and co-ordination, but once you get the hang of it you can rattle on at a good rate. I’ve had my Nordic for about 20 years now, I don’t use it a lot but the times that I’ve been injured it has proven priceless.
I had an appointment with Mr Clark on Tuesday, the last thing that he’d said to me before the operation was “I’d imagine by the next time that we see each other, you will have been out for a run”, well for me that was all the encouragement I needed, so I replaced my two 20 minute walks with two 20 minute runs.
I set off very cautiously at first, trying to feel every tweak and pull, but all went ok. It felt really good to be out running, I must say after five months out it all felt very alien to me. I’ve been exercising very hard during this time but it’s all been non weight bearing, so my legs were wondering what the hell was going on.
That evening Clare was going for a run around the block, so giddy from my first run back and still pain free I decided to go with her, this time I felt even better and it was great to be out running with Clare again.
The next day was the day of my appointment, so in the morning I dropped Clare off at work and was planning on going straight home, but the traffic through Durham was Horrendous, so I parked up and went for a run to give it a chance to calm down.
I parked up by the prison and ran around Franklin farm, towards Durham and back to the car via a lap of the pond, the run was all on trail, which was a bit tougher than my last run, all of the twisting and turning, dodging through the trees and the undulations were activating my core and felt uncomfortable. My legs were really sore from the two runs the day before, but it felt good to be out, it felt good to have sore legs from running.
My appointment went well, Mr Clark was pleased with my progress, he laughed when I said that I’d been out running, he said that he knew that I would have been out testing myself. He said I was ok to run but to keep off the trails for a while and to just keep running as long as it was comfortable, he also thought that I’d be doing sessions by the end of the month.
Clare was doing a session on the grass at Maiden Castle Tuesday evening, so I warmed up and warmed down with her and while she was doing her efforts I jogged around. By now, my legs were getting pretty sore.
Wednesday morning, coming down the stairs!! Oh no! It was almost a case of sit on my bum and take one step at a time. I’ve had long lay off’s before, but I’ve never had sore legs like this before coming back, the only thing I can compare it to is the first time you do a fell run. If you’ve never run down the side of a mountain/fellside you might not understand, but what happens is when you descend you use eccentric muscles, these don’t get used much so after a steep descent they go in shock and the days that follow are agony. Because I haven’t run for so long it really is like I’m starting from scratch.
So no running on Wednesday, I did however have a very good core session and half an hour on a cross trainer.
I started back to work on Wednesday, two weeks after my operation. My Doctor was going to give me a six week sick note, but I’ve never been someone who takes time off work on the sick and if I was being told that I could run, how could I justify being off work. I do however have to avoid any lifting, so I’m being careful.
Thursday came and I was still tired and sore, so I decided to run in the evening to give myself longer to recover. Clare was going for a run so I thought that I would set off with her and turn back when I’d had enough. On this run there are a few places where I could cut the run short. I got to the first turn around point, I still felt good so cracked on, second turn point, still felt good, third point, feeling good, well I might as well keep on going. Once I was passed the point of no return my legs went BANG!!
Oh my god! I felt like I was on the last couple of miles of a marathon, I struggled on to the end of the run, seven miles!!!!!
So here I sit Friday, feeling tied for my first three days back to work and sore from running. I’m having a total rest today, I’m thinking about the last few days. I think that I coped really well during my injury. I’m not one of those runners who hates every other non injured runner when I’m out of action, I just find what I can do and get on with it, but the first sniff of running injury free and I’m straight back into it, no breaking in gently, my third day of running and I do a seven miler, but my lesson is now learned and I’ll be taking it steady from now on.
Well, we’ll see what happens!