Had my first run today since the GOR marathon. It’s been a nice break, and the extra time with family has been much welcome, but I an now itching to get back into it.

The run itself was pleasant – just a short 5k round Braeside Park. Sadly, it seems my body hasn’t quite sorted itself out – I’ve had a tiny niggling ache in my foot ever since the marathon. The irony of it, is that it seems like it may have been caused by my last minute decision to wear slightly more supportive shoes to protect me from the road. I might have pulled out fine had I stuck to my vibrams. The ache itself seemed to sort itself out, and as of this morning, I had been pain free for about 4 days.

The run itself felt fine, and I was concentrating on trying to drive my self using my glutes. Oddly enough, I can’t seem to engage the glutes without breaking into a near  sprint – so it was actually pretty hard to do given I just wanted to have an easy jog. I ended up doing a half-baked attempt at an easy 5k – more like a tempo run at 4:45/km. Looks like there will be some work to do to get the glutes firing at lower paces. Weather was good, but the park was a little crowded – some school was holding their annual cross country meet. I spent a few minutes spectating – somewhat jealous that I had only discovered the joys of running in my 30s.

My foot felt great throughout most of the run, so it was disappointing that 3 hours later, the nasty ache came right back and was pretty intense for another couple of hours. As I type this, it seems to have settled back down, but isn’t quite back to where it was this morning.

I’m glad suddenly that I don’t have another major event till next year – this takes the pressure off and sort of allows me to feel better about downtime. Nevertheless, it’s annoying to lose all the hard earned fitness I’ve built up over the past few months! Fitness to me has been a means to an end. What I really love is spending hours exploring the trails on my feet, and to do that, I need lots of endurance, and a little speed certainly wouldn’t hurt. Each injury setback means I have to cut back down and start over, and the reduced range is pretty frustrating, as it limits to less remote, tamer trails.

Still, I have learned the hard way that, with an injury, it’s better to rest now and recover faster than to push through the pain. Nip the problem in the bud, as they say. In the meantime, hopefully the next few months of strength work and glute activation will be the answer to injury free running for me!

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