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What is a runner’s worst nightmare?
Most runners who have been injured and not been able to run for a while, especially during the first stages of their comebacks, have a heightened awareness of any little pain that doesn’t go away immediately.
We want so badly to get out there running again, but at the same time we are scared to death, that something is going to happen to make us stop and not be able to continue running.
If we do get injured, during our comeback, what is the biggest reason?
A: Doing too much or being stupid.
No we so want to run like we used to before getting injured. Dependent upon the injury and how long away from running you have been, should really decide where you start your recovery running program again.
Not how far or fast you ran before your injury.
If it has been more than 3 months without any running, dontcha think that you really need to start from pretty much step one or two, instead of step seven. Yes you know how to run and all the theory behind how to recover from an injury, but more importantly – how well do you listen to what your body is telling you.
When you first get out there and experience some success in your comeback, you know – you are feeling really great, making some really nice progress, you tend to lose track that you are still in recovery mode, not running mode yet. You want to do more than you should and your mind tricks you into thinking that you can do more than is smart or wise.
That describes me
I had arthroscopic surgery on my right knee in May 2011 after injuring it in February 2010 playing racquetball. The ornery old fart in me wanted to get back to running as soon as possible and I began running within a month of the surgery. I did 1-2 miles of running for about a month and the knee started to ache a bit too much and I backed off to let it heal more.When I started back up again in September, I went really slowly building up to 10 miles a week and no back-to-back running day, until mid-October.
Then I started to get involved with the online running community, reading all these great posts about people running this distance or that race, that I forgot that I was still very much in recovery mode. By the end of October I started running more and ignoring the well-thought out recovery process I had put together and had done so well with.By mid-November, I really went full-in and began quickly increasing my mileage and distance very rapidly, including a 21 day running streak and several 5 and 6 mile runs over the past few weeks.
Too much too quickly
The reality is
Right now like all runners I just want to run and run mostly pain-free, so that means slowing myself down and training smarter, instead of trying to leap tall building with a single bound, thinking I am more powerful than a locomotive or faster than a speeding bullet, well you get the picture none of us are Superman or Superwoman. No it is time to be smart listen to my body, instead of being stubborn and worrying so much about getting a certain amount of miles a week or a faster pace.
- How about you when you come back from an injury are you hyper-aware of all the aches and pains that are caused by running and slow down?
- Do you change what you are doing or do you just keep on running?
- If you are coming back from an injury and starting to get some aches and pains, when was the last time you looked back at your training log to see what you actually have done.