For me, this past week has been one of those ‘tentatively-trying-out-training-again’ weeks and of course I’ve been enjoying it, but then I’ve also been finding it pretty hard as well. I’m sure anyone coming back from injury will understand what I mean…
I’m back running so all is good.
Jogging is great- but to be honest, having had a month and a half out, any form of running seems enjoyable. It’s nice to be back at club training with the group, and not having to go aqua-jogging anymore, buuuut…
Everything is SLOW.
I hope you guys can sympathise with me. I’m talking about how runs have to be built up really slowly, and then the actual pace is also slow, and there’s also the fact that injuries in general just take ages to heal. So yeah, for a runner who tries to do everything as quickly as possible, it’s tricky. But then again it’s better than no running at all so who am I to complain?!
A Sample ‘Just-Making-a-Return-Week’
Obviously I’m not a coach, physiotherapist or expert in any field for that matter, but this is what my past week has been like- and I’ve had no pain so I think it works. Fingers crossed. Touch wood. Silent Prayer.
Sunday: 10 minutes on grass very, very, very easy with new trainers and kit (hence the photos!)
Monday: 15 minutes easy on treadmill, and then a 30 minute spin and 30 minutes of strength and conditioning.
Tuesday: Rest from running, but I did go for another spin and strengthening.
Wednesday: 20 minute run around the roads in the dark which was super creepy, and again this was done at a slow pace- pretty boring to be honest because I couldn’t actually see anything! I also attended my yoga class afterwards.
Thursday: Back to training!!! Well, I say training, but I actually only did half of the reps (and jogged) but it’s still something right? Total running time was probably about 25 minutes.
Friday: Rest and then babysitting in the evening- a huge challenge in itself.
Saturday: Hastings Parkrun. I have to say, even though I did start 10 minutes before everyone else and ran quite slowly (I think it took around 25 minutes), I really enjoyed it. The weather was beautiful, and so naturally I made sure to get LOADS of photos. I’m not even joking: there was over a hundred!
Straight after I walked into town and grabbed a Nero’s hot chocolate (which might I add was way too sickly), and then did a bit of Christmas shopping. I think buying only one gift and about five items for yourself still counts right?
Today: Sussex Squad training at Tilgate Park, Crawley with Evie, Erika, Shannon and Fraya. Last year I was put in the fastest group for this session however, today I was in the slowest… and I still found it really hard. I was only doing half of the reps but it was my first time going faster than a jog- which was definitely tougher than I thought it would be. Overall I ran 2 x 800m, 3 x hill, 4 x short loop, 9 x short hills completely pain-free. And this afternoon I’m hoping to go to the gym for a steam room because my membership ends in 3 days so I want to make the most of it!
In addition to the above, I’ve been doing at least 20 minutes of yoga a day, with 6 different foot exercises to strengthen and prevent injury in the future
But I’ve talked enough about me, and so now I just want to thank you guys for being so supportive throughout this time. All those lovely messages really do mean a lot to me, and it’s just the best to hear from you. I haven’t been answering many questions recently, but here’s a topic that Ellie wanted to hear about.
Tapering before a race.
When racing distances below 10km, adults and non-competitive runners probably don’t reduce their training that much- however for us that’s usually different. I always have an easy week before a race- so on the Tuesday I’ll be running 300m reps (usually around 8), and on the Thursday it’s always 6 x 200m strides. For me this is really important because it gives my legs a nice rest from all of the hard training and without it I tend to find that I don’t race as well.
The only exception for this will be over the next two weeks when I’ll be training hard just to get my fitness back up- even though I do have at least one race. I’ve been resting for a long time now so I’m sure I’ll be fine.
I know that everyone is different, but I strongly believe that having at least one easy session before a race is crucial- so what do you think?
Do you taper off before a race or just carry on training as normal?
And one final thing: it would be great if you could check out the new TeenRunner Athlete of the Month!