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May 26, 2015

Last blog entry detailed the issues with injury that I’ve had since Canberra, which has been frustrating to say the least (there are other words that could describe it better but they are also unfit for publication). Yet dedication to the cause, showing faith in local events and the urge to at least do something with Gold Coast a matter of weeks away saw me take my place on the start line last Sunday for the Rocky River Run.

Forget smiling for the camera!

Forget smiling for the camera! CREDIT: Phil Spencer (Rocky River Run Facebook)

This event sees the earliest start time for any event that I regularly participate in, with the 21km run starting at 6:15AM. It’s a good lead in for those looking to do the equivalent event at the Gold Coast, for that start time is just 15 minutes earlier. It’s probably scheduled this way in order to fit all the events of the day in a reasonable timetable, for after this came a 10km event, a 5km run and walk/wheels without timing over 5km and 2km, and also to minimise disruption to the roads which are never that busy on a Sunday morning in Rockhampton.

Bandaging for the hamstring that has been giving me grief was applied 24 hours earlier to help me through football umpiring commitments (I was never going to play on the Saturday, and that was before the numbers were sufficient for me not to have to play). This seemed to help me feel more confident in the leg than I had at any stage post injury for I was able to run at a pace where I would be reasonably comfortable yet not over extending myself with bigger goals in mind. With that injury in mind, the aim of this was just to finish in a comfortable time which wasn’t excessively slow.

The first lap was actually very comfortable at a decent tempo. There was no restriction in my running action, and there was no discomfort in the hamstring. I was even relaxed talking to a few guys on the route about this, though I didn’t cross paths with the lass who decided to dress as though it was 1975 or the Belgian exchange student who ran draped in a Belgian flag.

Despite being in what I term as “No Man’s Land” (far enough behind a group to have to work excessively to catch them, too far in front of the next group to drop back without affecting the tempo), everything seemed OK until coming off the bridge on the 2nd circuit which was about two-thirds of the distance in. Having had a history of calf troubles in the years prior to starting my participation in running events, I was a little worried when I felt some soreness in the lower-mid region of the calf. From that moment all the only aim was to make it to the finish line regardless of time, so to wobble into the finish chute in a time just 3 minutes slower than last year was probably remarkable.

As of now the calf doesn’t feel painful to walk on, and the hamstring feels as good as it’s felt prior to the injury. Given the period of inactivity the quads are at the moment feeling rather second hand, but my experience tells me that this only lasts a few days before going away. This should mean the resumption of normal training during this week, with the City2South in Brisbane less than 3 weeks away providing the last race simulation training prior to Gold Coast. Hopefully I’ll resist the temptation to increase the training load to compensate too much, for the Gold Coast aim at this stage is sub 4 hours.

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