"It's a treat being a runner, out in the world by yourself with not a soul to make you bad-tempered or tell you what to do." - Allan Sillitoe

Thursday, November 19, 2009

The road back

Went to the physio last night and came away feeling very positive.  The problem I am currently experiencing is being caused by scar tissue (probably from the needling done to promote healing of my ITB issue).  The lump of scar tissue is quite noticeable and that is what is causing the straining, pulling feeling above my knee.

As well as some quite painful, deep massage of the tendon in an effort to break down the scar tissue, Anna provided me with some glute and hip strengthening exercises that I need to do.  I am allowed to run and cycle but stay off hills.  Ice after exercise and also stretching and self massage including with the foam roller into the sore spot.  I think I'll get the cricket ball in there too.  Back to the physio again next Tuesday.

As a result, I was able to go for my first run for 2 weeks this morning.  Just ran down to Mends Street and back so approx 6km.  Felt slow and heavy but I'll take that over not running any day. 

Ran into Sugar, Kim and Sas at Mends Street.  Looked like Sugar and Sas were doing some barefoot strides after a run.  Had a quick chat before heading off again as didn't want to stiffen up.  Got rained on while running home but couldn't care less as at least I was out running again.

I think I'll give tomorrow a miss and go for a decent bike ride on Saturday morning.  In the meantime, I'll be getting stuck into that scar tissue.  It was only 6km but I feel like a runner again already!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Completely crocked - rest time

Tuesday - headed out to do the 2km repeats that I had planned.  Did my 2km warm up but when I started the first 2km repeat, the tendons in my knee felt like they were going to rip off so pulled the pin on it and ran easy up to the Narrows instead.  Saw Sugar, Kim and Sas down near Mends Street so stopped for a bit of a chat.  Time is not an issue when your running is going like mine is at the moment.  Good to have an encouraging chat but also slightly depressing when you think about all the good running you are missing out on. 

My knee and associated tendons etc felt a lot better on the way back so I pushed a bit for one 2km stretch which I did in about 7.50 (3.55/km pace) into the wind and without straining at all.  Easy 2km run home.

Wednesday - Can't remember what my plan was when I set out but knee felt good so decided to do what I had missed on the day before.  Did a 3km warm up then 3 x 2km with 2 min walk recover between.  Ran at around 3.37-3.40/km pace throughout.  Knee felt good - some tightness in the tendon though.

Knee got a bit sore post run and felt some soreness in the bursar.  Felt inflammed and sore to touch.  Continued with ice and back on the anti inflamms.

Thursday - Saturday - Rested as I wanted to give my knee chance to settle down before I played cricket on Sunday.  My thinking was that as my knee is ok for shortish runs and intervals so should be OK for cricket.  Tested it out with some practice run throughs etc of my bowling run up and action with Ben on Saturday and felt fine.

Sunday PM - Cricket for Perth CC Masters Vs University @ James Oval UWA.  This ground is one of my favourite places to play cricket even though the wicket is always a batsman's paradise.  Fantastic weather as well.

We won the toss and decided to bowl first.  Uni have a pretty good side and won their first game easily when they bowled Claremont-Nedlands out for 16!!  - which is the lowest score in adult cricket at a decent level that I am aware of locally. 

I opened the bowling (2nd over) and straight away knew that it was going to be hard going.  The same tendons in my knee that had cut short my interval session were straining from the start.  Added to that was that my big toe was slamming into the end of my boot in my delivery stride no matter how I tried to adjust it.

Didn't bowl too badly but didn't get away with anything either and had no luck (the bowler's lament).  Should have had an LBW in my first over and still can't work out why it wasn't given but didn't push the appeal given that it was first over and still feeling my way back.  Wish I had now ...

Went for 54 off of my 7 seven overs (2 spells 4 overs at start and 3 overs at the end as Uni made 220 odd from their 40 overs.  Picked up 2 wickets in my last over and had quite a few runs go off the outside edge but plenty came out of the middle as well.  In short, a pretty average display and certainly felt my age as well as my injuries.  I was finding it a bit of an effort to get to the crease but we were pretty light on for bowling and I figured that the damage was already done.  Also took a catch but my toe and knee/leg were very sore by the end.  Had a sock full of blood from my toe and will probably lose my big toenail.

We were in trouble from the start when we lost one of our openers in the second over and struggled to get around 140.  I batted at number 10 and was last man out for a well compiled 2.  Caught at deep mid on trying to hit over the top - (it was supposed to go straight).  To top off a great day, I managed to on drive the first ball I received into my sore toe!!

Knee very swollen and had a red swollen line about 2cm wide and 8-10cm long along the tendon on my leg above the knee.  The bursar wasn't bad at all, it was all in the tendon.  I guess I needed to push it too far to face up to reality.

I have decided that I won't run again this month to try and let my body heal.  I'll keep going with the foam roller and do lots of hip flexibility and strengthening exercises.  I have two other options to try as well.

I have ordered a "miracle cure" treatment over the internet. It's a bit controversial and seems to work brilliantly for some people and not at all for others so I'll say no more until it arrives and I have given it a try.  It is recommended by Alberto Salazar though so that is good enough for me.

Other option is to see Dr John Whiteside - basically local anaesthic needling (myofacial).  He fixed a chronic shoulder injury for me back in the 90's and treated my brother successfully a few times along with many elite athletes and sports people over the years.  I'm not as much of a coward about needles anymore which is a good thing because I almost fainted last time I saw him.

So it could be that I don't run again this year.  I'll be doing my best not to get fat which will be hard as I have distance runner's appetite (even though I hardly drink alcohol anymore and am pretty good at keeping off the junk food).

I am thinking its going to be a long hot January as I try to get my fitness back.

In the meantime, I won't be blogging much unless there is anything positive to report.

Monday, November 2, 2009

32km on Saturday

Yes, I did 32km on Saturday morning ... however it was on my bike. I wanted to do something relatively hard and long but it would have been unwise to run long so went for the bike instead. I used my 1 tonne mountain bike with knobbly tyres so it was a decent workout, much more than I would have got if I had gone on my road bike (which needs a bit of work in any case). It was quite windy and I pushed reasonably hard so felt like I got something out of it.

On Friday morning, I ran 8.4km easy by myself. Knee felt OK without being brilliant hence my extra caution on Saturday. In my head I had pencilled in 12.8km easy for Saturday but I just didn't feel confident.

I took Sunday off and on Sunday evening watched the New York City Marathon. It started an hour later than I expected because daylight saving kicked in on the States on Saturday night so it made for a late finish (1am). Worth staying up for though as both the Men's and Women's races were good contests into the final miles. Really pleased to see Meb Keflezighi win the men's race topping off a great comeback from some really serious injuries and great to see Robert Cheruiyot after a couple of pretty average ones this year (thought it was very average that he wasn't introduced at the start in the elite introductions. 4 times winner at Boston, once at Chicago should be enough for an intro in my book).

Planned an easy run for this morning (Monday) but slept in and gave it a miss. Planning to do some 2km repeats tomorrow (Tuesday)morning so the extra days rest on my knee was probably a good thing.