Friday, August 31, 2012

Be careful what you wish for

In the "Take 2" post, I mentioned that it would be better to be dealing with an injury than my mystery training intolerance. Alas I obviously spoke too loudly. That tweak I felt in the calf on Tuesday reappeared when I attempted a jog on Thursday. I did check before going jogging with a few hops and basement run jog throughs. The calf was a little tight, but not sore. However, once I went outside and set off on a proper jog, it started to hurt and after some umming and ahhhhing I turned back and cut the jog short. Next step - a trip to Clinic 88.

My 'taped' calf
At my visit to Clinic 88, we were in agreement that I have a grade 1 tear. Likely precipitated by running in minimalist shoes and doing some box jumps on a weak calf muscle. It is pitifully weak (after all most of the medial gastrocnemius is solid scar tissue). I stopped doing the various exercises that were prescribed after the first injury once I was back running. Let's face it, all those little exercises that they send you away to do, rarely happen. I think they give you too many and they are fiddly. Hence, compliance just isn't a happening thing.

Case in hand. Let's look at what I've been told to do this time around.
Eccentric heel drops - 3 x 15 reps TWICE a day (both straight leg and bent knees)
Bridges 3 x 15 - daily (to strengthen the glutes)
Standing bicycle exercise - to fatigue TWICE a day (to better use the glutes and hammies)
Hip flexor stretches - TWICE a day 30 sec to 1 min holds
Tennis ball pressure points through the hip region - 1 x day.

I go in with a torn calf, I come out with so many exercises I'm dizzy! Will I do them all every day consistently, would you?!

How long can I not run? Probably 2-3 weeks at least in my books. I worry that as I mentioned the Canberra Times Fun Run Bo said they could review things next Friday and consider a running option. That worries me because if I was fit and healthy, I'd latch on to that. Thing is, I've torn a calf before (admittedly substantially more severely), there is no way it will be completely healed in such a short time frame. A good thing I don't have any urgent training to get back to :-). I guess we will see what the mind set is next Friday at my next visit with the awesome Jim at Clinic 88.

For the time being, it will be bike rides either on the indoor trainer or with those lovely magpies.


  1. It's a shame they didn't use red tape (to match your lycra).

    I'd do them if it got me back to running faster. Well, at least half of them. Yes, no way should you be racing Canberra Times. I'd say 3 weeks for a calf tear then 3 weeks to come back.

    1. Thanks ET. Yes I'm very disappointed by the lack of colour for the tape! Bo is inexperienced, so I think he was being overly optimistic. The inexperienced are a worry when it gets to calf injuries! I'm sure my previous injury was worsened by poor advice from an inexperienced young physio. I kept trying to run on it too soon. Oh well, we live and learn. Time to don some lycra.

  2. Is it just me, or are those word verification puzzles getting harder?

    1. I don't get them, so I can't comment.