Half Marathon training update

It's been a little while since my last post, and I wish I could say it's been down to my busy training schedule... Instead, most of my time has been spent hunched over a laptop copywriting or painfully mulling over my next essay. So I thought I'd hunch over a glaring screen a little longer to give something of a running update.

Unfortunately, it's not all great news. I have had some brilliant long runs and I was excited to see my Sunday mileage go up to seven miles... eight miles... nine miles. Half Marathon distances were slowly but surely within my reach. 

But it hasn't been without its challenges. Aforementioned work has consumed me and I feel stressed most of the time. Fitting in exercise has become a challenge in itself, but I need it more than ever to thrash out some of the stored up stress. With the long hours at a desk or in my car came lower back tension, which oddly enough manifested itself in my right ankle. Running started to hurt. 

Some amazing physio and sports massages later, said ankle was fixed. Then two weeks ago I was eight miles into an 11 mile run when returning tension in my lower back spread down my right IT band and accumulated in a knot above my outer knee. The knot became so intense it felt like it had pulled my kneecap out of place. 

No amount of walking breaks eased the discomfort, which was increasingly turning into pain. I tried to convince myself I was only three miles from home, but I knew I was doing more harm than good. Even if I somehow made it home, I knew I'd probably wreck my chances of a fast recovery. 

My first ever phone call to be picked up mid-run was made. I was gutted. 

The boyf arrived 15 minutes later, just as I finished a round of stretches. It was a beautiful day and I tried to take in the warm sunshine, the park in full bloom, and the peace and quiet of a Sunday morning. It did little to cheer me up as I awkwardly slid into the car to avoid twisting my knee.

Another round of sports therapy later and I cautiously eased into a gentle run on one of my favourite routes in the Swansea Valley. A short while in, I seriously thought I had recovered enough to do the Swansea Half as planned. Minutes later, though, the pain returned to my knee and I found myself walking home.

Maybe it was the endorphins, but I didn't feel defeated this time. I decided by this point I wouldn't be taking part in the inaugural Swansea race, which was most definitely a real shame, but knew 100% I wasn't abandoning ship. I made the decision not to race - this time. I know I have it in me to try again.

A work colleague, also injured, pointed something out to me as we both hobbled around the office: to remember we do this because we enjoy it. It might sound obvious, but when you're stressing about keeping up with training schedules and if you spent long enough on the foam roller, it's a welcome reminder. 

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