Sunday, June 01, 2008

Bumpety bump, bump, bump

That's me at the moment. Bumping along in the current of life. I'm enjoying certain aspects of being able to put some focus on things other than running--family, brewing, lazy afternoons--but it is certainly different not having that driving pull of the next run hanging over the head. No sooner one hard session under the belt than looking to the next one by avoiding late nights, sleeping in, over-indulgence, and overtime. None of that any more.

Last Sunday night I "celebrated" my first entire week with no run in, well, I don't know how long. It would have to be measured in years rather than months. A far cry from last September when I ran every day in the month.

I nearly made it a second consecutive week, but late this afternoon, with a sense of some improvement in the Achilles (and a DVD that needed returning--I am Legend--don't bother if you haven't see it), I headed out for a "jog". Yes, it really was a jog. About 5:30/km pace most of the time...at least the times when I wasn't standing at lights or handing in the DVD or, and this shows how slow I was going, being stopped by a funny little old lady who insisted on giving me two nodoame (throat lollies) because she likes to, "minna ni shitsetsu shimasu" (be kind to everybody--she was a cracker, in every sense of the word).

I clocked exactly 6 km (according to the footpod) in 34:13...average pace 5:42/km. See? It was a slow jog. There was even a couple of minutes when I was tearing along at 5:00/km, so I guess the "5:30/km most of the time" that I mentioned above was a bit optimistic.

Anyway, no point dwelling on the stats. There is no joy to be had there. The point of the run was just to see how my Achilles is going. And the goodish news is that it was not as sore as it was two and a half weeks ago when I last ran. On a pain scale of 0 to 10, where 0 is no pain (and the target I am aiming at) and 10 is sharp, shooting agony, I guess I moved from 6 to 5. Waaay hooo! Such progress!

But really, I am encouraged. Encouraged enough to know that very little to zero running is the right course. And to keep up with the tedious heel drop exercises.

Apart from this, I have been along to the gym sort of semi-regularly (twice a week if I'm lucky). Managing about 30 minutes on an elliptical trainer-like thing (actually called "Arc Trainer": picture; discussion) and 20 minutes on a bike followed by an upper body strength workout from "Run Strong" (edited by Kevin Beck). The main point of all the weights is to get a body like Harvey Keitel in "The Piano", you know, a few muscles to go with the gut ;-)

Gym sessions are best endured by borrowing Mr 15-year-old's MP3 player and listening to his collection of Offspring, RHCP, Nirvana, Sum41, etc. and, his latest, Hadouken!


以上です。

9 comments:

Clairie said...

Hi Stephen!!!

Sounds like a lot of us are down and out at the moment...but coming back.

Yeah Baby!

Fingers crossed in a months time..maybe more (for me) we will all be geared up and full of mojo and heading towards a new goal and supporting all our fellow runners out there.

Looking forward to hearing more good news about your come back.

Luckylegs said...

After listening to that video, Steve, I realize just how much I have "aged"....there, I've used the forbidden word about myself! But that's OK, just as long as you don't use it!

Big hug....mend quick.

Scott Brown said...

Hey Stephen

Strangely enough I was just looking at your running log from last year and noticed how much you were running. I don't suppose an extended break would hurt at this stage even if you weren't carrying an injury.

Just be careful not to get into the mode were you start looking at all the bad things about running and forgetting how good it is. If you do this for an extended period you can write your own book that would make a mediocre video called "I was legend."

Tesso said...

I reckon when you start doing those comeback type runs you should leave the watch at home, I do. I still make sure I know how far I've gone though.

I'm spending more time in the gym too and doing weights more often than usual. Maybe we can have a virtual arm wrestle :)

Ewen said...

I'll put a six-pack of Coopers on you to beat Tesso in an arm wrestle any time (with you using your left arm).

Steve, I know from hanging out with you in Sydney that you are a legend.

Hadouken really tested my fast-twitch reactions - hit the pause button in record time. I can take Offspring and Nirvana, but not that!

Ewen said...

Forgot to say Cybex-600A is pretty cute.

Gordon said...

Steve, thanks for your post on my blog. I read the stuff about the ankle strengthening exercises and started doing them too. Although my massuer worries it could be making things worse (says I should do them AFTER the pain goes).

I've been getting massage, acupuncture and lazers beamed into the ankle. For two days after each treatment I feel good - so it seems to be doing something. I read that your pain is 5 or 6 out of 10. Mine is only 2-4, but I worry about making things worse -- achilles seem to take for ever to heal.

Good luck with your running and achilles.

Gordon said...

Steve, thanks for your post on my blog. I read the stuff about the ankle strengthening exercises and started doing them too. Although my massuer worries it could be making things worse (says I should do them AFTER the pain goes).

I've been getting massage, acupuncture and lazers beamed into the ankle. For two days after each treatment I feel good - so it seems to be doing something. I read that your pain is 5 or 6 out of 10. Mine is only 2-4, but I worry about making things worse -- achilles seem to take for ever to heal.

Good luck with your running and achilles.

Anonymous said...

Steven,
have tried to comment on your Blog many times but the comment did not show. Even if you are not running currently, you still are a runner, that's for sure ;-) Feels strange to have so much time for other things to do, I know what you mean. For me, running releases some stress as well. Hope that stress will not build up for you while you are taking off for some time. Well, enjoy this -hopefully short- period of your running life and get your Achilles back to normal quickly.

Joachim