What I’ve come to find over the last 4 weeks is that running really had become the string to my bow, the wiz to my khalifa, quite literally, the spring to my step. What’s more, having not written anything, clearly a major outlet for creativity.
On the 5th March I suffered, what my physio and I believe to be, a partial tear of the Soleus muscle in the calf and a subsequent grade 2 strain of the Gastrocnemius. Weirdly the injury didn’t occur all at the same time, more it came on slowly over a few days and then, finally, something popped toward the end of a hard 18 mile run and I hobbled home.
Slap bang in the middle of training, my London Marathon bubble burst. This was bad news. Very bad news. Until said puncture, I’d been running well. A fairly casual, clock free, 1:21 half marathon in Barcelona and averaging 55 miles per week. All seemed on track for a quick half in Fleet and then all aboard the PB bus for London… For the 4 weeks that followed that dreaded Sunday however, I couldn’t run. Not once. No chance. Not even to the bus stop.
But, determined to keep calm and write terrible slogans, I tried to stay physically active whilst safe guarding ‘The Injury’. Cycling, swimming, yoga and confined to the gym, I didn’t put on too much weight save a little around the middle (a result of the early onset of the solace found in beer). Neither had I lost too much endurance. Actually I found varying my training quite rewarding, redefining my athletic persona, one Sunday the Cannibal of Epping Forest, the next the Flipper of Clissold Park’s middle lane. Whilst friends were out running personal bests on road and trail, I had the chance to make friends with a burly Polish builder in Gold’s Gym, N22. He helped me make my arms look more like arms and less like pipe cleaners, so that was also an achievement.
But whilst I’d found solace in other activities (and Marek, bless Marek) in all honesty, nothing has replicated running, that same life-force, the immediate rush of post run endorphin. So now here I sit in split shorts. Having run twice this week, both times on the treadmill, both times 4 miles with varying success, today, the sun is shining and I am going to try and get back outside. This has been the biggest omission of the last 4 weeks. Just generally being able to leave your door whenever you want – run through the woods on your lunch break, run through your manor in the middle of the night. I mean, I’ve got great abs these days sure, but haven’t been able to replace the great outdoors.
From a writing perspective, I’ve been scribing about other things (mostly yoga) over here on Medium. Which has been namaste, but this blog has been neglected… I can’t tell you yet what I am or am not going to be able to do in terms of running this year. That is going to be determined by a sensible return to training and how quickly the Phyz can get me properly mobile again. But, thanks to learnings over the last few weeks, I am going to start writing a little more broadly about wellness, mindfulness, diet. I might even go for a rebrand, love a rebrand. Let me, hopefully, ponder what that rebrand might look like during my jog in the sunshine.