Feeling like I’ve finally turned a corner in this years-long rehab. While I’m not completely ‘back’ from the bizarre double-hamstring injury of three-plus weeks ago, I’m back on the road.
I’ve logged three short runs this week, and the results, while mixed, have been improving…and not from a ‘time’ standpoint.
Wed 2/8 – My first run since the injury was fairly miserable, but that was more due to it being on rolling hills – hardly ideal for someone with recovering hammies and a fair amount of down time. That was just a 2.5 mile jaunt. The main issue during this run was fatigue in the recovering left hamstring. I just couldn’t maintain my usual cadence (180-185 SPM), as my left leg just didn’t want to cooperate. Ended up pausing after a few of the larger hills. I tried to force it, and just ended up overcompensating. That led to MASSIVE soreness the following 2-3 days in unusual spots. The good news is that none of the soreness was in either hamstring, and none of it felt like ‘bad soreness’.
Mon 2/13 – After a few days of ‘purposeful walking’ to try to loosen up, I hit the treadmill before work. Goal was to do a split 5K, with a half-mile walk in between. Pace was irrelevant to the plan. Struggled through the first mile trying to maintain cadence – I could tell I was favoring away from my left hammy. Eventually I just slowed down a bit to keep from forcing it. Stuck with the plan the rest of the way without issue, although cadence remains a concern. The best part is that my heart rate was still relatively low at the end, so I’m sure the work on the elliptical and in the pool has helped keep the cardio fitness in order! Minor soreness the following day, but localized to the calves. That’s to be expected, so no worries.
Wed 2/15 – Treadmill again. Went into this with the intent of running it through, maintaining the best possible cadence throughout. Discovered early that the hammy is improving, but isn’t quite there yet. Cadence was almost there – just shy of 180. Ran with a small uphill grade for the first half, flat for the rest. It was work, no doubt, but I got through it feeling pretty good, and the soreness today is minimal.
So I feel like I’m on the road to recovery. I haven’t incorporated targeted stretching for the hammies since the injury, as I want to give them max opportunity to heal before I start abusing them again! Lots of foam rolling and a massage or two have done wonders. They’re still tight, but improving.
The best part is that I haven’t heard a peep from my Achilles during this time. I hope that’s a sign that I’ve finally turned the corner!!!