On my way to Grandmas

Monday – May 12, 2014 (6 Weeks to Grandmas Marathon)

I had meant to keep a weekly update of my training progress towards my return to running a marathon, but the return was looking so uncertain that the blog got a bit neglected. I thought I cleared all the hurdles, my doctor now knows I am running (a little) and she is OK with that, she is happy with my overall progress and is happy to consider weaning me off all treatment over the next 12 months.  But my confidence in the ability of my body to handle the challenge has taken a battering. Each week I tried to ramp up either speed or endurance there has been a setback requiring a visit to the physio and time off from running. It made me question if what I was asking of my body was maybe just too much considering the underlying damage.   
Over the past six weeks I’ve managed a, not nearly enough, total of 200km. Not a lot of running that would inspire my confidence to tackle a marathon.  Anyhow I am still optimistic especially after a strong Sydney 10k on Saturday May 2 at Homebush. I exceeded my expectation, whilst not a blistering pace it was quite a bit quicker than I thought I was capable of at this stage of my progress.

I am on a quest to find the right pair of running shoes that will take me through a road marathon.  I am convinced that is the main problem now and if I can get that resolved I should be fine, providing I don’t run out of time.  Currently running with a painful R heel, muscle cramping in R calf and high hamstring tendinopathy (just back to normal I guess). Almost weekly physio visits are keeping me on the road.

Over the next month my focus will be on building my long slow distance runs and work on building my mental strength.   Each run is a mental struggle to keep going, partly due to a change in diet and partly due to lack of conditioning. I am waiting for the breakthrough moment when running feels smooth and natural and I will be able to run feeling like I have an extra gear – if needed.    

BUT despite feeling slow and clumsy at the start of each run, it is absolutely thrilling to be running again – highlights in the a past month include a five day running camp in Alice Springs over Easter – not a huge amount of running but plenty of interval running on soft surfaces and the most amazing scenery.

I also  returned to Athletics NSW competition in the Novice X-country event at Scarborough Park, Ramsgate and  Hammer I went to the Sky Run at Mt Buffalo in early April, he ran while I spectated.

Rangers cabin on top of Mt Buffalo
And lastly I did a 20km slow run walk in the Blue Mountains during the Mt Solitary Ultra in late April.  Five weeks to go till Grandma’s marathon – trip is booked just need to get a few long runs to boost my confidence.