Saturday, February 09, 2008

So They Say Time Off Can Be A Good Thing - I Think Not

You always read about people saying " The injury was a blessing - it forced me to give my body a rest and I've come back stronger than ever." Well, I've been through an extended forced rest time and I'm throwing the bullshit flag that it's a good thing.

Starting early last summer my psoas muscle (which I like to refer to as my Soh Ass) began to act up. I've had some problems with it in the past; but, I was able to get past it fairly quickly. Well, with my change of job, getting ready to sell our house and moving from Billings to Plains, I didn't take the time to get on top of it. I had seriously neglected by stretching, strengthening and core work for several months. As a result, a minor flare up turned into a serious issue.

The shortening of my Soh Ass resulted in my hips and pelvis getting out of alignment which then caused problems with my back. By September and October is was bad enough that I was missing as many days as I was getting runs in; and, there were some days where it was problematic just to walk.

In November I thought that I was starting to get a handle on it when the whole thing came back with a vengenance. Things went from bad to worse. I basically missed all of December. It really wasn't until the week of Christmas that I could even begin to run.

Well, by that time, I was fat, had lost all of my fitness and most of my muscle memory. There was no coming back stronger or feeling refreshed. I just felt old and tired. 8:00 pace was a challenge, sub-7:00 would now be in the speedwork category, and forget sub-6:00. For the last month someone else has been running in my body. Some slow old guy took over.

Thankfully in the past couple of weeks things seem to be coming around. I'm almost back up to what I consider to be my normal baseline mileage (50 mpw). My daily training pace is slowly starting to come back towards 7:00 pace, I've run up to 12 miles (hadn't been able to do more than 8 since sometime last August) and, I'm starting to look forward to starting hard workouts and getting ready to race.

But, in no way do I think that the injury was a blessing. It was my own fault to let it get that bad and it has basically cost me last summer, the fall XC season, and a couple of indoor races. And, who knows how long it's going to be before I'm back to racing normal pace again. So, there's no way that I'm going to be happy about it and I'm not looking at it as a benefit in the long run; but there's nothing that I can do about it now but move forward, be positive and do the best that I can to return to fitness.

See you on the roads tracks and trails.


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