Progress update, or “why I should have had PT earlier”

My intention was to keep my blog updated on progress mainly so I can look back on this time if it can help me in the future, but as usual the intention has not turned into action. So, here’s the last month in summary, and now I hope to update more often.

It is clear now that I should have gone to Physical Therapy sooner. The weakness in my right hip probably got worse over the last year as I continued to run with the ankle issues. PT has been working to get rid of my Achilles tendonitis and to strengthen my right hip. I have difficulty finding the time for the exercises every single day but I am gaining strength, and the Achilles problem is getting better.

This past week I decided to run a couple of 5k races, partly because I wanted to see how fast I was, and partly just because I have not done any speed work for a while. On Saturday it was the Pancreatic Cancer 5k in Edison where a 6-year-old girl beat me (she happens to hold the world record for 5 and 6-year-old girls). My time was about what I expected given the circumstances (21:40). My Achilles hurt in my warm up and a little early in the race, which is pretty typical now. My second race was the first RVRR Summer Series race of the year. As it was hot on the day I decided to take it easy but it’s easy to get caught up in the race and soon it turned into another speed workout. This time there was no Achilles pain at the start, but there was after the race.

I finally decided I need to apply my coaching toolbox and set myself a plan to get back to form, so last night I planned to run an easy few miles with RVRR. Early in the run I realized that my cadence seemed low (at least for me – historically I’ve run at 195+), so I wondered if that could be causing issues and spent the rest of the run trying to keep my cadence over 190.

Will it make a difference? I’m not sure, but I ran longer than planned (4 miles instead of 3) and mostly felt good so I will try to maintain that. At around mile 3 I did wonder if my Achilles would hold up as I could feel some pain creeping in, but it ultimately didn’t cause any problems and felt reasonable when I stopped.

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