Tuesday, August 27, 2013

The long road back

I ran today! Or should I say, I jogged? The first steps in a long slow progression to running again. It was a simple start. 10min walk 'warm up' followed by 10 x (1 min jog + 1 min walk) and a walk 'cool down'. I think the 8 weeks of detraining was very effective! Those 1 min jogs felt tough. None of that feeling of gliding that I get on the bike and no easy way to run with a super low heart rate. I felt like I'd gained 20kg and was a sack of potatoes. However, there has not been any actual weight gain, that's just what unfit muscles feel like. It's far too early to tell if the muscles have recovered, but at least it was a good start with no obvious discomfort. Relapses are common when overtrained muscles return to training, so it's going to be a very gentle approach over the next 3 months. No races or running events that would cause me to run too hard too soon. Patience was never my strong point. A good thing I have the cycling to keep me distracted. There's something very satisfying about doing those 100k+ rides, even if they are super slow. Commuting to and from work on the bike is also very therapeutic. The next run will be 7 x (2 min jog + 1 min walk). Daniels has an introductory running plan that looks suitable for a gradual return to running. No fast tracking allowed here! Who knows, maybe I'll be in good running form when I enter a new age group next year?!

The long road ........

Thursday, August 15, 2013

Scared to run

It's been 6 weeks since I last ran. However, I am scared of going running! I've been spending my time doing lots of gentle cycling and lots of walking. It has been a good break for the running muscles. The thing is, those muscles have been so sore and reluctant to run for so long, that I am afraid to challenge them again. Shock, horror, a runner who's scared to run! We are always told to 'just do it'. Alas, I tried to 'just do it' and for 2.5 years battled episodes of training intolerance and muscle pain. I tried various approaches, but nothing worked. So here I am today, 6 weeks off running and now reluctant to run.

There's no need to rush to start running again I tell myself, it's not like I have any events in mind.  Plus I suspect the main running muscles need more time (although I think fear is very much a factor here). Slow cycling has been very good for the mental health. I can ride for hours and keep the heart rate mostly in the lowest zone. Something I can never do running. I don't get any muscle pain spinning in an easy gear and it's been a pleasure doing the odd commute to work by bicycle.

When (if!) some of the fear of running subsides, the plan is 3 months of a 'couch to 10K' kind of approach. No intervals, no races, just good old fashioned jogging mixed with walking. I'm just not quite sure when that will be.

The trusty TCR

In the mean time, it's more time in the saddle of my trusty Giant TCR. I've already covered nearly 1200km on the bike(s) since late June.