Well – that would be me. Because I am the idiot who insisted on running a 30K race without checking out the course profile. Because I did not amend my race strategy when I realised that it was an entirely different race from the one I ran so successfully and confidence-boostingly (bear with me with this lack of grammar, I’m on a roll here) in London in March (extremely hilly instead of flat, on trails instead of roads). Because I kept thinking I could hit a sub 9 mile pace in it. WHAT WAS I THINKING? I wasn’t is the answer. Thinking. I didn’t think until at mile 17 it felt like someone was hitting the bottom of my left kneecap with a hammer. And I had to struggle in.
Since then my knee has bothered me. It has improved – weekly sessions with Jonathan have loosened the tightness in my quads and improved the tracking of my kneecap. It was never terrible – nothing like my knee pain last year when I could feel it coming down the stairs. I felt it in the last miles of my 16 miler a week ago. Nothing that stopped me, but it was there. After 3 months off orthotics, I have started wearing them again and this week’s 12 miler went fine – no pain.
But what it has done is made me nervous. Everything else is looking good. I have been going through my average paces and workouts in my last training cycle and my average paces are up. What felt hard last time is comfortable now. My VO2 pace has gone up (or down – whatever – I’m faster) and my long run pace is a lot faster. I haven’t missed many runs in this cycle and found them easier than I did the first time around.
I’m just nervous about my left knee. I took out my orthotics some time ago because in the space of a few days the orthotic on my right foot really started to hurt my arch. I was fine without and just carried on and have only started wearing them again, on and off, since I hurt my knee. I think I probably should wear them in the race but I’m terrified of what might happen if I suddenly develop this pain in my right arch. Right now – and I know this is completely mad but perhaps you’ll understand – I’m thinking of taking 2 soft insoles with me tucked into my fuelbelt so that should my arch suddenly become unbearably painful I can take my orthotics out and put my soft insoles in. Kind of insane I know but it might just put my mind to rest. Hrmmm.
Or is all of this just taper madness? To an extent. Or just general madness. Plenty of that going around too.
Otherwise, however – thank you! You guys! What a response to my previous post! What an amazing bunch of friends I have in the running community (and all you lurkers out there – I can see you!) and what a point to prove about what running has brought to my life. Thank you so much – all your comments made me feel very virtually hugged. Wonderful. Can’t wait to meet each and every one of you one day out running.
And that’s what I’m trying to keep hold of right now. I run because I love it – and I truly do. Not always, not all the time, but most of the time I love it. I have trained hard for Berlin and really would dearly love to BQ. I’m thinking positive thoughts and visualising and all that good stuff. However, however, however – I also want to be okay with it if it doesn’t happen. I even want to stop kicking myself for being such a dumb*ss. There’s little point in it anyway..
So that leaves me here children. 3 days to go. Last run done yesterday morning (7 miles with 2 at RP – well kinda) and I’ve decided to ignore the 5 miler Pfitz wants me to do on Friday and the 4 miler he wants me to do on Saturday. I’m going to keep the juice in the box now. Sunday morning, 9 am, let’s see if I can use my “bat out of hell” strategy again. I’m not sure whether you can track me – my bib number is F1864 – so far I’ve not managed to find a tracking website.
I’m going to run this thing. And then I will let you know all about it. I promise!