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Wednesday, 20 April 2011

Hamstring rehab = Freedom parkrun in the sun!

With a bit of luck I am hoping to get out for a freedom parkrun today in an effort to continue my hamstring injury rehabilitation.

Now I'm not sure what the cause was, but since my parkrun effort on Saturday, my hamstring has been very sore. Obviously the initial cause was the original hamstring injury. Now it could be that the Saturday parkrun itself was the cause of the renewed soreness, but I don't think so. The hamstring felt fine on Saturday afternoon. More likely it was all the bending whilst gardening and playing football and rounders with the kids all afternoon on Saturday. It was like an overstretched feeling in the muscle.

Anyway, the upshot was that on Sunday I could only hobble about and I was not much better on Monday either. The grumpiness of injury had shown its head again! Yesterday seemed to provide a miraculous recovery as the soreness had completely gone overnight. The great news here being that it was indeed only soreness and not re-injury. I really had to force myself to be sensible yesterday evening to stop myself going for a freedom parkrun. I knew the extra day would be a good idea. And today it feels even better still.

So thankfully it looks like I can get back out into the park today to do a freedom parkrun, and what a beautiful day for doing a freedom parkrun in the sun! The grumpiness has gone and I can't wait to get back out there, filled with optimism that the injury is close to full recovery and plenty of sunny runs ahead.

Now the question is, what pace shall I do my freedom parkrun at? Last week I did a 23:51 freedom run and then 20:23 at parkrun on Saturday. But I think the recent soreness has made me a little wary. So I think I will do a very gentle warm up, maybe around 9 minute mile pace, for at least 15 minutes. Then, all being well, I will stretch before doing the freedom run. I think a first lap at around 12:00 minutes would be good and if all feels well then I may look for around 11 minutes for the second lap. Then a nice slow jog home.

The great thing about parkrun and doing a freedom run for rehab, is that I am now so used to the parkrun course (having run it more than 100 times) that I know how to run a 12 minute lap or a 11, 10 and even 9 minute lap. This is so helpful when trying to come back from injury in a sensible manner, but also trying to gradually increase speed in a safe way.

After my freedom run I will then have to see what it feels like. I know that I have the dreaded cold bath hanging over me if I feel any kind of soreness. I hate cold baths so much, but whether it is pyschological or of real-physical benefit, I know it helps me. The threat of the cold bath will certainly be enough to stop me pushing it too hard.

And after that I'll just have to wait and see and hope that there are no negative side-effects in the next day or two. And hopefully no soreness! If I get through the freedom parkrun unscathed I can consider another freedom run in the next couple of days, try to increase the pace a little more and hopefully put myself in a position to do the parkrun on Saturday. If I make it to the start line at parkrun on Saturday it would be nice to go a little faster than last week in an effort to gradually get back towards my best times.

Fingers crossed!

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