Guess what? I’m injured and I’m not joking! Despite everything that went on in the last 12 months my first run was littered with rookie mistakes and now I have shin splints in both legs. Am I going to let it defeat me? Well no I’m not. I’m going to keep being Smart.
The best laid plans
My first run was something I have been planning for a while but the opportunity was grabbed on the spur of the moment. As I write I am on a tiny plane heading to Ireland on a hen weekend (more about that later). In advance of me abandoning Mr LMR for a weekend alone with our pack of rampaging monkeys, he took a couple of days off with me to brace himself. So I was suddenly able to avail some free time.
On day one I thought “brilliant, I’ll go for that little 2k run I have been planning.” I planned my route home from the school run. He drove us there I ran back. Easy! Now to be clear I haven’t gone from not running to 2k after a year off. In the last few months I have run on a treadmill weekly. Building up gradually. Last time prior to the run was 1.5k. I felt ready.
Take a deep breath
Thing is, a treadmill isn’t the road. My trainers have not been gait analysed since I got my orthopaedic insoles. I have gained weight and 2k was probably too far for a first run out. On the plus side my PTT felt fine.
My initial reaction was to curse a lot and give myself an internal punch in the brain. I didn’t do that though because that is the quickest route to giving in and failure. Again. I took a deep breath, and reassessed my situation. I’ve messaged my PT so that he can tailor our next session around it. I popped some ibuprofen and got on google.
Here we go again
So it’s three weeks off running. Time to dig the bike back out of the shed. On Monday I have a day off Monkey free so I’m going to get my gait analysed with my many orthotics. “Maybe running isn’t for you” you might say. Well I disagree.
In 2016 when I got back into Parkrun I met a lady on the course. We got chatting and she told me she had sustained a serious back injury and she would never run more that 5k once a week. She told me that was enough for her. If that was her limit then that was fine for her. I thought about her a lot over recent months. I’ve discovered so many other activities that I do not love like I love running but they make me stronger. So if I could only ever run 5k once a week that’s fine.
I’ve got this
It isn’t about speed or distance, it is about the little thing that running gives my brain. That boost that non runners don’t get. It’s so hard to explain or define. It is the hormone that fits like a purpose made key into the parts of your brain that the day to day keeps tightly imprisoned. Instant anxiety relief. I’m not giving that up lightly.
It’s only shin splints after all. The road to recovery is long and littered with hurdles but come back continues. This is why my smart planning was worth it. Built in flexibility means that your disappointment isn’t crushing when it inevitably comes. Trust me, I’ve got this.