Saturday, 5 May 2012

A long-winded post to say...

I ran today!!!

Yesterday was my second appointment with my new physio, Julie.  (Jan the Physio is on sick leave and Julie is her colleague.)  I was apprehensive about starting with someone new and initially feared that this apprehension might be justified, as Julie's instructions to add in 50 calf raises/day left my injured leg in spasms from mid-thigh to mid-calf.  But I persevered in my usual brave and stoic manner, and quickly was up to 100 calf raises/day with no pain and no cramping.

My leg was feeling stronger and healthier, too.  There was only a minimal pulling sensation very occasionally by the time I went to Shetland at the beginning of this week where, of course, I promptly re-aggravated things on the stationary bike at the gym.  No idea why this happened.  One second I was happily pedalling away at low resistance; the next, my hamstring tendon and calf completely seized up.  I immediately stopped - if I've learned nothing else from this injury, it's STOP when something hurts - and walked back to the flat.  For the next two days, I could feel a low level ache in my calf most of the time and depressed myself with visions of any return to running being put back yet another month.

My next purchase.
I expressed this worry to Julie at our appointment but, after a thorough examination of the offending muscles, she didn't think that I had done any further damage.  Her hypothesis is that, as the microtears of the original injury healed, they left behind scar tissue which has resulted in adhesions between the muscle fibres, hence the feeling of pulling and cramping when the muscles are stretched.  It's only in one area that she can feel a small lump of scar tissue; this will be for Adam to address at my massage appointment next week.  In the meantime, she had me hop on both legs, hop on just the injured leg, jump with both legs ('Jump higher!  Higher!   Don't be such a girl!'), and run in place on a rebounder.  Nothing hurt. 

Julie's attitude was, 'You won't know if you're ready to run until you actually try running.'  So I left with instructions to try a 2min jog/1min walk for one mile on a soft surface and to be guided by my body, not my head, as I increase time and distance over the next two weeks.

And that is what I did today.  I have a fierce sore throat and a developing head cold but nothing was going to keep me from giving this a go.  I walked a half-mile to the local sports field as a warm-up and then, with a prayer offered up to the running gods, started to shuffle at a faster-than-walking pace.  Two minutes passed and nothing hurt/tore/spasmed.  In fact, my calf felt pretty good.  By the end of my mile (or rather, 15 minutes as I have no idea how far each lap of the small playing field is), I was moving at a jogging pace - still really slow, but it was definitely more than a shuffle!  I walked the half-mile back home, was tempted to try some more jogging on the way, but resisted the urge.  A slow and sensible progression, that's my aim.

I never thought that jogging for a total of 10 minutes would make me feel so happy!


  1. Hooray!!!!! Bet it felt great. So pleased for you. Hope the head cold's feeling better too.

  2. Thanks, ladies, for your collective 'woo hoo!' Although, if this is how I'm carrying on after running less than a mile, can you imagine how insufferable I'll be if I ever manage 26.2?!

  3. *When* you manage 26.2, you will be entitled to be as insufferable as you like!

  4. And we'll support that insufferability (word??)! I'll give you capital letters when you get to 10 miles again! x