This is what progress looks like

Anyone that knows me in person, and anyone who happened to be within a 50 foot radius of me at the gym last night, will be aware that I hit a recovery milestone: my first 10k since I was injured. No, it wasn’t fast, and yes, it was on a treadmill, but it happened, and my knee didn’t crap out on me.

The fact that a 10k is no longer a distant hope is, for me, akin to being solicited by Leonardo DiCaprio (dressed as a dapper Jay Gatsby, and having recently decided he no longer gets a thrill out of banging Victoria’s Secret models), and being whisked away to live out the remainder of our days on a tropical island with people serving us cold beer and grilled halloumi every day.  Sorry Ian.

Me, basically.

As much as this thrills me, I am keen to practice some self-restraint (not of the Michael Hutchence – rest in sexy peace – variety).  I know that the only reason I am able to run that kind of distance is because I backed off of running entirely (for much longer than I thought I would have to), and I have been sensibly building back mileage s-l-o-w-l-y.  I’ve swapped over from logging all of my workouts on dailymile to fetcheveryone, and the dork inside me loves being able to analyze all of the graphs and statistics and stuff that is available, even though it is child’s play compared to Dan and his training log that is verging on obsessive.  Making sure I log all of my workouts means that it is clear when I am doing too little (never) or too much (almost always).  For the moment at least, my running is in check:

weekly run mileage up to marchThat 9 mile week last week?  Two runs.  One of them was even outdoors, like a normal person.

I can also peruse my training log, specifying a time frame if I like – so that’s neat.

Here's most of March.  Blue is swimming, red is running, black is cross training.

Here’s most of March. Blue is swimming, red is running, black is cross training.

What perhaps appeals to me the most, however, is the fact that you can compare yourself to everyone else who logs their training on the site by checking out where you stand in the ‘League’.  Obviously, I am opting to show you the swim league since my lack of running has me placed embarrassingly far behind.  And yes, that is 63+ miles I have done of swimming in a pool.

swim league marchHopefully I can now start climbing back up the running league slowly.  A month ago I honestly didn’t think that I would be anywhere near a 10k because I had pretty much lost hope with running, and the boredom of swimming lengths in a pool was getting very, very close to driving me to a state that looks pretty similar to this:

tumblr_n47cmgeUSn1ttw9tho1_500Thankfully that isn’t the case, so I’ll just keep plugging away at training and see how I go.  To everyone I ever eye-rolled when they mentioned online how ITB syndrome was stopping them from running, I apologize.  I am now a believer.

16 thoughts on “This is what progress looks like

  1. Thanks for the shout-out. But more importantly, glad to see the progress! There’s nothing more frustrating (and demoralizing) than running in constant fear that the next step will herald that telltale sign that you’re not back where you want to be. Three cheers for a successful 10k!

    • No problem. You can imagine how difficult it was not to do a victory lap of the gym, fist-pumping the air, and dishing out high-5s, before taking a bow. 🙂

  2. That is awesome, glad to hear it 🙂 You have been doing so much cross training too, I hope you find that you haven’t lost much fitness running wise once you get back in to training.

    • Thanks – and I’m glad to have not been the only person going through a lame slog of boring recovery stretching and very limited running. Glad in a ‘misery loves company’ way, not a mean way. 😉 I’m also pleased to see you’re relationship with running is back on track, because I’ve got to admit, and I’m sure you’ll agree, an affair with swimming leaves one quite unsatisfied.

  3. another +1 for strava here. it’s geek-heaven and you can virtually stalk famous athletes too! *waves at steve way* oh and well done on getting back to a 10k and even running outside like a norm and not on a treadmill like a hamster. summer’s coming too so all is good in the world.

  4. Great stuff MS, though you’ll know that running progress isn’t necessarily linear. Expect setbacks, hopefully only of a minor nature.

    I’ve given up on the geeky tracking of every movement I make. However I’ve re-joined a 1000 mile challenge table for 2015 which is keeping me honest.

    • 1000 miles is a great annual goal! I do know to expect setbacks, sadly, especially as my legs get used to the impact and muscles are re-awoken. Hopefully I’m being sensible enough to avoid anything major. 🙂

  5. My friend is dealing with ITB syndrome too, her longest run before pain is 7km. I dealt with it when I first got into running and had to stop for the pain to go away. Once I resumed, I built up mileage veeeeerrrrrry conservatively. That was 5 years ago. To this day, I will ere more on the side of caution when it comes to pushing distance.

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